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82 Viking Ocean Australia & New Zealand Cruise Reviews

Overall i like the Viking ocean ships. Clean, crisp norweigian style. Food choices good. Room layout very good. But this review is about my view of the way Viking handled the itinerary debacle caused by the virus. We were merrily ... Read More
Overall i like the Viking ocean ships. Clean, crisp norweigian style. Food choices good. Room layout very good. But this review is about my view of the way Viking handled the itinerary debacle caused by the virus. We were merrily headed to Hobart Tasmania when the captain informed us early in the morning while at sea that we were headed on a beeline to the mainland of AUS to get into port there. It was obvious from the direction of the boat that Sydney was the intended port. NZ had just closed its ports and it was clear AUS would follow suit. We never made it to Sydney. AUS closed its ports before we got there. We were redirected to Melbourne. Due to an AUS exception to its port closure order we were able to disembark as long as we all headed to the airport for departure. To my knowledge nobody on board was ill before disembarkation. Overall I was impressed with Viking's offer for free flights home for everyone on board even if you did not arrange travel thru Viking. Coach of course. It probably took a huge effort to get flight's (re)arranged in the short time before disembarkation for those who did not do their own thing. My wife and I immediately redid our own arrangements so we could stay in business class. Viking provided transfers for everyone to the airport and allowed people to stay on the boat as long as possible before their flight. I found the guest assistance very adequate in helping us and other people figure out their new arrangements. I have to figure out what to do about upcoming Viking trips depending on how the virus thing is panning out but appreciate Viking's flexibility on reservations (vouchers for future travel and cancellations almost up to the time of departure). I may be wrong but I think they were first out of the block with the most flexibility. There are a few nits and nats I could describe but they are trivial compared to how things generally unfolded and were dealt with by Viking. I see reports of chaos on other ships. Some are still floating around out there looking for a port. God bless and help those people. Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
Our first Viking Cruise was the most comfortable and relaxing cruise we have been on...probably because it is geared for people of our age group (late 60’s-70’s). We enjoyed the spa, lectures, entertainment, and all the open spaces on ... Read More
Our first Viking Cruise was the most comfortable and relaxing cruise we have been on...probably because it is geared for people of our age group (late 60’s-70’s). We enjoyed the spa, lectures, entertainment, and all the open spaces on the ship. The staff was very good and friendly. We mostly ate at the buffet (World Cafe) and enjoyed the convenience of that (we appreciated the staff’s concern for cleanliness, having everyone wash their hands when entering the buffet). The food was good but sometimes cold. The food in the main restaurant was just okay, although the lobster was yummy. The food in the Italian restaurant was pretty good but the same menu every night. We did a couple of the included shore excursions but mostly purchased the optional ones, which were good. Our cabin was comfortable (DV2 category), but could have been a little larger. My main complaint was the inconvenience of the closet, which was right next to the bed and had heavy doors that you had to slide back and forth to get into the two parts of the closet. I did comment to our cabin steward that we were having a problem with the shower head and it was adjusted immediately. However, all things considered, we will definitely cruise with Viking again!! As we all know, nothing is ever going to be perfect. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
Hello, we just got back from our Viking Ocean cruise from Australia and New Zealand on the Viking Orion. First let me tell you it was well worth the time Money and experience. We had a great time on the ship and the ports of call. The ... Read More
Hello, we just got back from our Viking Ocean cruise from Australia and New Zealand on the Viking Orion. First let me tell you it was well worth the time Money and experience. We had a great time on the ship and the ports of call. The crew is absolutely fabulous, they were the friendliest and most helpful staff I have ever cruised with (with about 12 cruises so far that saying something). The food is excellent and the preparation is 5 star. The rooms are spacious and well setup. Free use of the laundry rooms was a very nice perk for a 2 week cruise. The onboard entertainment is fun and professional. Brian the Cruise Director is a classical trained singer and has an exceptional voice. The embarkation and disembarkation was quick and organized well. With all the Virus scare going on they were very careful checking us in the first day. Most of the included excursions are just a bus ride around the local city. The quality of the excursion is based on the quality of the driver who talks about the area and sights. He has to do this while driving so can sometimes loose his train of thought. All the ports were worth stopping at and exploring. We did 3 privet tours and one Viking paid excursion. All the passengers were friendly and had no problems with any of them. The only complaint I have is the constant changing of tables when dining (first come first assigned and rotated to balance out the restaurant. The plus side of this is you meet more people, The down side of this is you don't really make any real connections with your new friends and get to know them well over an extended cruise. The internet is spotty and weak and very bad in port. We really enjoyed the relaxed atmosphere of the cruise and the enrichment lectures they had on the area and people we were going to visit. From the lands history to the origin of the people living there. Informative and relevant information was passed on to help you get the most out of each port. We will be doing another Viking cruise in our future, both Ocean and River. The have earned their quality reputation. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
If I could rate Viking with a 10 star review, I would. We were on the 30 day Australia, Indonesia, Asia leg of the Ultimate World Cruise. When we signed up for the cruise we were worried about wildfires, volcanoes, and possible riots in ... Read More
If I could rate Viking with a 10 star review, I would. We were on the 30 day Australia, Indonesia, Asia leg of the Ultimate World Cruise. When we signed up for the cruise we were worried about wildfires, volcanoes, and possible riots in Hong Kong. Who would have thought we would be faced with the Coronavirus outbreak? The itinerary we signed up for was definitely not the one we took. The ports pretty much changed on a daily basis with our original disembarkation in Hong Kong, being moved to Singapore, and finally Bali. Because we needed to bypass China and Malaysia, we spent 22 days in various parts of Australia, visiting some very interesting added ports. We even sailed to New Caladonia. The crew were short handed as many were not allowed to board in Sydney because of the regions they had came from, but the service was still excellent throughout the cruise. When we got to Indonesia things really changed, as we were not allowed to dock in Surabaya or Samarang because of a rumor that we had coronavirus passengers on board. We were also turned away from Bali for a day because of the same rumor, and then it all became political between the Indonesian countries. We had our temperatures checked in Komodo, Samarang, and Bali. Al three times everyone on board, including crew were deemed healthy, no fever. An executive from Switzerland flew out to negotiate with the Indonesian government in Bali, and we were finally allowed to dock in Bali for a day of tours and disembarkation. Who knows what that negotiation cost Viking, I am sure they paid dearly. The main reason for the 10 star review was how well Viking went far beyond anything we could have expected to keep us safe and healthy. Our original air itinerary was changed 4 times, everytime with the intention of keeping us safe and out of Asian airports, thanks to the wonderful and capable people in Guest Services. Our Cruise Director, Beven, was remarkable. He dealt with the whole situation with humor, transparency, and an ability to keep us all feeling safe and calm throughout all of the uncertainty. We were all in the same boat, so to speak. We were always kept informed as to what was happening whenever staff knew. The real downside was the flight from Bali, to Dubai, then home to San Francisco, 35 hours total, but again, to keep us safe. Since our flight left at midnight Viking put us up ia a lovely beach resort for the day, including a nice room and meals. We met some amazing people onboard and everyone seemed to interact more openly with each other because of our shared situation, which was really nice. We almost cancelled the trip last minute, but we are really glad we didn't, as we had a great time overall. This was our 5th Viking cruise and the entertainment was by far the best we have ever had. The talent, from the singers and dancers to the cruise director, and the asst. cruise director were extraordinary. The excursions were not the best, but with the constant change in itinerary, Viking did their best with last minute arrangements. The food was varied and very good. They had to be creative, as provisions were sometimes delayed because of the port changes. We were also nicely compensated with a very generous future cruise allowance. Overall, we are again greatly impressed with Viking and their regard towards safety for all of the passengers onboard. We felt much safer from the Coronavirus on board the ship than we feel being back in the US. As the Captain reminded us daily, WASH, WASH, WASH, and take care of each other. Thank you Viking Cruises! Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
Just returned from Viking Orion- Australia and New Zealand, plus a pre-cruise to Cairns. Over all our trip was wonderful. We were so blessed with good weather and mostly calm seas. Our flights took us from KC to Dallas, to Sydney. Then ... Read More
Just returned from Viking Orion- Australia and New Zealand, plus a pre-cruise to Cairns. Over all our trip was wonderful. We were so blessed with good weather and mostly calm seas. Our flights took us from KC to Dallas, to Sydney. Then to Cairns for our pre-cruise. I would recommend this pre-cruise because the northern part of Australia is beautiful with the Barrier Reef and rain forest. Our Sheraton resort was also quite luxurious and the town of Port Douglas is a great tourist area. Many artisan shops and reasonably priced restaurants. Our flight back to Sydney was delayed, so we did not get on the ship until close to 7pm. Others, who did the pre-cruise, wanted to do the evening dinner excursion that first night, but missed it due to the flight delay. The next day, we did the Sydney city tour and had free time in the afternoon. Unfortunately, our bus guide for the city tour was terrible, so we were disappointed that we did not learn more history etc., in Sydney. I did comment on the excursion review that our guide was a spacey 30 something more interested in her dare devil sports, then informing us about the area. Oh well. In Melbourne, we opted for a day long wine and animal park excursion. It was enjoyable, worth the money, but the time at the winery was too long. The wine presenter personally poured samples into 70+ glasses, which took close to an hour, with the cheese paring. After that we had lunch, which was delicious. The first group there had 30 folks, so their tasting went faster, and they finished lunch with desert in a timely manner. Our group rushed through the meal and some folks did not get desert, due to the timing. We were not affected by the fires or smoke that was happening between Sydney and Melbourne. Nor did we have any mention of the virus that has affected other cruise ships further north. We did the included tours in Hobart, Tasmania and Dunedin NZ. A lot of beautiful gardens, architecture, and nature to observe. In Christchurch, we chose to see the inland of NZ, and did the Lord of the Rings excursion. It was interesting to see the mountains and flat countryside as we drove about 2 hours. We were a bit disappointed in our lunch, probably because in the past, we have gotten great food in the additional excursions. Our stop was at a town hall were a couple senior aged women served cold sandwiches. There was fruit and sweets, but not the gourmet food you think about with Viking. In defense of the folks, in town, we were in the middle of nothing, so I get that resources were limited. My suggestion was to lower the price of the excursion and maybe state a simple lunch is served. We also stopped there on our way back for tea and sweets. At least the bathroom was clean. Our bus ( 1of 3) broke down on the way back, but the company was prompt to replace it and get us back to the ship in a timely manner. Our second bus had poor air conditioning, but we were all happy to be on our way. In Wellington, we went on the included city tour, and rushed back to the ship to watch the Super Bowl. Free beer was served that afternoon. Being from KC, we were delighted our team won. In Napier, we signed on for a winery tour, and were not disappointed in our choice. Clearview Estates provided an appetizer and wine pairing, along with a very interesting presentation by the owner/wine maker. Our second winery had more of a brief wine description and set out a tray of cheese and crackers. for all to enjoy. The other wine excursion did not have the food and wine paring that Clearview offered. Rotorua was the stop my husband and I did the kayak excursion. If you enjoy canoeing or kayaking, I would recommend this option. Fun drive out to the lake, fun folks at the kayak company, and fun time in the hot sulfur baths. We wore UV protected shirts, another thing I would recommend, although they had plenty of sun tan lotion for all to use. In Auckland, we did the included city tour and then the Sky Tower and Aquarium. The afternoon tour also took us past 3 places we saw on the included tour, so I thought we could have skipped that and just gone to the museums. Overall, we had enough time to see everything. The next morning we exited the ship about 8am. We had a late fight, so Viking asked us if we wanted to spend the day in a hotel, next to the airport, or go to the hospitality room ( in a hotel) in downtown Auckland, then be transported to the airport. We chose the day in downtown Auckland. We went with other folks to the art museum and had a great Mexican lunch. We were told the last bus to the airport was 4pm, which we board at 3:45. Because our flight was 10:55pm, we ended up at the hotel ( at the airport) anyway. It was nice to relax on a super comfy bed with regular TV, and really fast internet. If I knew that was the plan, I would have showered at the hotel and not packed like I was ready to travel the night before. Oh well, but thank you Viking for taking such good care of us. I hope this review helps those wondering about this cruise trip. We were very pleased and grateful to Viking for providing a wonderful vacation/holiday. If anyone has specific questions, don’t hesitate to contact us. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
We have been on 2 Viking River Cruises, but never an Ocean Cruise, so we chose to try our first Ocean Cruise with Viking because of their reputation for excellence and we wanted a small ship experience. Overall the cruise was excellent. ... Read More
We have been on 2 Viking River Cruises, but never an Ocean Cruise, so we chose to try our first Ocean Cruise with Viking because of their reputation for excellence and we wanted a small ship experience. Overall the cruise was excellent. The ship was beautiful, open and airy with lots of huge windows and spaces to use without ever being crowded. All the Viking staff are top notch, which we love. The staff are genuinely happy to make sure the guest is having a great experience. On this ship, our Cruise Director, Bryan Rodrigues was wonderful, and the entertainers were exceptional. Such talent was beyond our expectations. The entertainment was so good, we often went to both the early and late shows, as they were so amazing. We cannot say enough good things about the Viking Experience as a whole. If we had to make any suggestions, we would offer two: First, have less lectures and more fun things to do with guests on "Sea Days". Second, it would be helpful to know about the docking situations in each port so that the guests can make a more informed decision regarding their excursions and times. Knowing how far the dock is from town and the time at port would be extremely helpful in planning one's day. We would have made some different decisions, had we known ahead of time some of these details. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
Viking is noted for being an above average cruise line. Unfortunately this particular cruise started out substandard for Viking. I made comments early on in our cruise and was really pleased with the quick feedback and attention to my ... Read More
Viking is noted for being an above average cruise line. Unfortunately this particular cruise started out substandard for Viking. I made comments early on in our cruise and was really pleased with the quick feedback and attention to my comments made by Viking staff. The staff on the ship were all exceptionally friendly and attentive. The food was very good-especially in Manfredi's-my favorite. Did not care for the Chef's table but that is more related to what was on the menu for the evenings I attended. The educational talks were excellent and it was great to be able to watch them on my own schedule, in my own cabin, on my own TV. The cabin was beautiful and comfortable with the best shower I have ever experienced (so much pressure). The amount of storage in the cabin was excellent--we did not even fill up all the drawers. The nightly entertainment was very good. The cruise director, Brian Rodriguiz was amazing--what a talent. For me I would have liked more options for shore excursions. I would have liked more hiking options-or other active excursions. I was disappointed in some of the included tours and found it unfair that on certain days I had to choose between included tours and optional tours rather than being able to do them both. This was due to scheduling overlap. This did not occur on the Viking River cruises we have taken. I was not happy with the arrival at the airport or the departure. This was disorganized. The post trip in Port Douglas was nice. The hotel was excellent. The ship is beautiful. I loved the itinerary and highly recommend it be added to everyone's bucket list. I do recommend Viking and the Orion is a beautiful ship. Love that no children are on Viking cruises. Love that everything is included on Viking cruises. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
Auckland to Sydney. The only disappointment was the final day in Sydney being too short, and apparent confusion amongst Viking staff about water shuttles from wharf to attractions. Arrived Sydney at 1PM, and cruise ended next morning ... Read More
Auckland to Sydney. The only disappointment was the final day in Sydney being too short, and apparent confusion amongst Viking staff about water shuttles from wharf to attractions. Arrived Sydney at 1PM, and cruise ended next morning .. only half a day for this great city. Directions we received from Viking shore team sent us as pedestrians thru an active working dock area to a non-existent shuttle. Wound up taking taxis at $60 to access Australian Maritime Museum, one wharf away from the ship. Otherwise, everything aboard ship, and all the organized shore excursions and enrichment sessions exceeded expectations. Food in all dining venues was excellent. Even had a special cake for 50th anniversary in Chefs Table. The Viking label Aquavit ( aged aboard a Viking ship on a round the world cruise) only available on Viking ships, was excellent ... much better than any other Aquavit aboard. Be sure to ask specifically for it, as they tuck away the bottle in the back of the bar fridge. Participated in the Kitchen Table experience with the Orion Executive Chef on a trip to the market in Melbourne, and dinner prepared by him that evening. Excellent commentary as we shopped in the market, and an enjoyable meal. A couple participants were disappointed that they did not experience hands-on slicing and dicing food preparation, as they were led to believe from the event description, but we, personally, were not disappointed ... who could top the preparation by the Viking kitchen? Also went on the Best of Australia extension to the outback. Terrific experience. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
Clean ship, great staff, great tours (included and extra) never disappointed with anything! Food was outstanding, entertainment top notch! Well organized activities. Although a non stop 15+ hour flight I would do it again. Viking phone ... Read More
Clean ship, great staff, great tours (included and extra) never disappointed with anything! Food was outstanding, entertainment top notch! Well organized activities. Although a non stop 15+ hour flight I would do it again. Viking phone support staff very helpful leading up to the trip. JUST WOW!! Viking Orion was fun we always felt welcome and were treated with utmost respect, from the Captain to the people who cleaned our rooms. They are very happy people who love their jobs and they show it with warm smiles and conversations. The Cruise Director, Brian R. was multi talented and it was a joy to hear him and his wonderful team of entertainers sing. Back to cleanliness, ever minute I was on the ship everywhere we went the staff was cleaning and I must say I felt very safe onboard. All ports were great and we did the included and also an additional tour each port. This cruise was so good we booked another Viking cruise next year!! Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
Visiting New Zealand was on my bucket list. The trip was a way to celebrate my retirement. I was impressed by the beauty and cleanliness of the ship. Every room had an outside balcony. The food was made from fresh ingredients and ... Read More
Visiting New Zealand was on my bucket list. The trip was a way to celebrate my retirement. I was impressed by the beauty and cleanliness of the ship. Every room had an outside balcony. The food was made from fresh ingredients and beautifully prepared! I went to the spa often and felt renewed each time. The staff were friendly, competent, and available. I enjoyed the presentations from the historians and the beautiful music from the musicians. Even though the Orion was at capacity, the ship never felt crowded. There were lots of cozy places to relax and visit. I participated in the Kitchen Table experience, meeting a chef and preparing a delicious meal. I loved both the included and extra excursions that I participated in. Handing out water to us each time we left the ship was helpful . As a nurse, I also appreciated the emphasis on washing hands when entering the restaurants. A fabulous experience!! Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
Love Viking, have done 2 ocean & a river. This cruise did not disappoint. Friendly staff, lovely ship, great food. Exactly what we've always experienced on Viking. Not a fan of the Chef's Table menu, but that's a ... Read More
Love Viking, have done 2 ocean & a river. This cruise did not disappoint. Friendly staff, lovely ship, great food. Exactly what we've always experienced on Viking. Not a fan of the Chef's Table menu, but that's a personal thing. The included excursions were good, if not exceptional. If you like visiting botanical gardens in every city, you'll love these excursions, but not a lot of variety. That said, we opted for mostly optional excursions. The port talks were enriching & usually entertaining. Did not partake of evening entertainment as we were usually tired after busy days. Some of our best times onboard were watching Chiefs playoff games - thanks for streaming Viking. The best part of this cruise however, was not the cruise, but the optional extension "Best of Australia". The 6 days took us inland to parts of the country cruisers would never see. Our guide Ronald & all of the drivers (one a native Maori) were exceptional. Knowledgeable, entertaining, creative & so organized. Even with 2 glitches, that they had could not have foreseen, they adjusted in ways that made the trip even better. So glad we opted for this extension, highly recommend it. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
I have traveled on 9 previous Viking River Cruises and realize I enjoy smaller ships more! I chose this ocean cruise because I wanted to see New Zealand and it was the only Viking Cruise available. I found that with river trips, ... Read More
I have traveled on 9 previous Viking River Cruises and realize I enjoy smaller ships more! I chose this ocean cruise because I wanted to see New Zealand and it was the only Viking Cruise available. I found that with river trips, people are more interested in the places traveled while with ocean cruises it seem to be the cruising itself. Also it is easier to get to know people and make friends on a smaller trip. .The ship itself was beautiful and very comfortable and of course the food excellent, the drinks good and the staff very friendly and efficient. The spa facilities and offering were very good, though expensive. I am sorry we were unable to get into Dunedin due to wind in the harbor as we had booked an excursion there that we were looking forward to. We very much enjoyed the Wildlife Sanctuary in Melbourne and the Walk in Taurange. I was disappointed in some of the other excursions: the description of "Punting on the River" implied it lasted more than 25 minutes and the Auckland City Tour and Planetarium were both disappointing. Many of the shipboard activities did not appeal to us so we did not take part (nightly entertainment was late in the evening). Perhaps this was an error on our part. I have and will always recommend Viking. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
I was invited by family. I had never been to Australia and wanted to go. Viking had a good reputation. The food was excellent and I always enjoyed the wine service. All staff were friendly and helpful and made me feel at home. The ... Read More
I was invited by family. I had never been to Australia and wanted to go. Viking had a good reputation. The food was excellent and I always enjoyed the wine service. All staff were friendly and helpful and made me feel at home. The wandering musicians were a joy. The ships decor was lovely. I loved all the lectures and adult activities. I dislike casinos, art auctions, noisy children and play areas and too many people on the boat. This was perfect. I appreciated having everything included in the price. The Explorers Dome shows were interesting. I didn't go to all the theater shows, but I enjoyed the ones I attended - especially the magician. The bus excursions were interesting and gave a good over view of the area. Lombok was the greatest disappointment. It would have been much better to have had time in Bali. We were not told that Lombok was essentially a day on the beach - bring your suits. So most people didn't and we wound up sitting in the lobby waiting to get back on the bus. Nothing to see there of interest. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
We chose this cruise because we had long talked about going to Aus/NZ and with free airfare, it was time to go! A storm out of Antarctic kept us from stopping in the port of Dunedin, and fire danger cancelled out Melbourne "Koalas ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we had long talked about going to Aus/NZ and with free airfare, it was time to go! A storm out of Antarctic kept us from stopping in the port of Dunedin, and fire danger cancelled out Melbourne "Koalas and kangaroos at Sunset" special tour, but with 105 degree temps from winds blowing off the outback, I can't say I was all that disappointed! The rest of the cruise was up to our expectations from having taken a number of Viking River cruises before. This was our first ocean cruise and it gave us just enough of a feel for NZ that we now want to go back, take the Trans-Alpine train, visit greenstone country on the west coast of the S. island, go to Te Anu, visit Queenstown, and see Milford Sound, all things that weren't on the cruise itinerary to start with. The Viking Orion has an on-board planetarium and we had University faculty lecturer experts in Astronomy, History, Military History, and Geology. The on-board entertainment was above our expectations and Brian, our Cruise Director, blew us away when he performed NessUN Dorma to close the evening's entertainment one night. Viking is known for it's more cerebral entertainment and it did not disappoint. We loved the onboard experts' presentations and the planetarium, which doubled as an IMAX 3D type theater with the initmacy of only 20 some seats, was a huge bonus and is not available on all Viking Ocean ships. We will book on the Orion (or one of the other 2 that have a planetarium) whenever we can! We will for sure choose Viking again! Staff were super friendly and expert. We tried the specialty restaurants (Manfredi's - Italian, and The Chef's Table - fixed menu with wine pairing - menu varies throughout the cruise) the main restaurant (called The Restaurant), and we kept going back to the World Cafe, which had fabulous views from the 7th deck, a wide selection on the buffet and the choice to dine inside or out on the deck. We loved the high tea, served all 'sea days', but we found that too many scones with clotted cream and strawberry jam and finger sandwiches can ruin your dinner appetite, and with the great seafood buffets, BBQ buffet, sushi, and always a carved meat and far too many sides to begin to mention, on top of the gelato and dessert buffet, we had to skip high tea, if we wanted what was being served for dinner that night! There was a little glitch with Embarkation that resulted in passengers standing out in the sun, uncovered for almost an hour because the boat was not docked at the main terminal in Sydney. The next day we were docked there and all embarkation and disembarkation went flawlessly, but the first day was well over an hour standing, most of it out in the hot sun, while everyone went through a makeshift screening - just very slow. We were grateful it wasn't pouring rain, but the hot sun was burning people because of how long they had to be out in the sun. Highly recommend Viking. The quality of staff and service we came to expect on Viking River Cruises happily extended over to this Ocean Cruise. We'll be back! Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
We have been on five cruises before - Celebrity, Princess, Cunard and Norwegian. None of them compare to Viking (although Cunard is close). This cruise was pretty much flawless in every way you can imagine. Embarkation was smooth and ... Read More
We have been on five cruises before - Celebrity, Princess, Cunard and Norwegian. None of them compare to Viking (although Cunard is close). This cruise was pretty much flawless in every way you can imagine. Embarkation was smooth and painless and they let us on the ship and into our room hours before we expected. The food was universally great, there was always lots of it, and the specialty restaurants were all very good. We bought a beverage package and for us that was a good investment. But their policy of providing drinks with meals was very liberally applied, and if you limited your drinking to meals you probably wouldn't need that package. The talks about upcoming ports were very informative, and the included tours - we took most of them - were very good. Brian, their Cruise Director, was not only a splendid presenter and full of great information....he's also a very talented singer! The ship was generally spotless and I had a very hard time finding any rust. That was not true on every other ship we have ever been on. Rust is a continuing problem on ships and leaves a bad impression about overall ship maintenance (I did four years in the Navy) but the Viking people seem to have defeated it. Disembarkation at 8 AM was very early for us - our plane from Auckland didn't leave until very late that night. So first they put a bunch of us in a downtown hotel, complete with coffee, soft drinks, lots of snacks. Later they took us to a hotel at the airport and put us up in a room for several hours! This was all at no charge - a very classy thing to do. Overall we were surprised and very pleased at how nice this Viking cruise was....and how much better in every way it was compared to all the other cruises we have been on. The fact that they have eliminated kids/bogus art sales/casinos/overpriced photography shows that they understand their audience. They have hit the marked squarely. We'll be back, Viking! Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
We choose this cruise because of the pricing and the inclusion of the flight in the price. It was a trip of lifetime made within our reach. Also, Viking is a “no” children cruise line something we prefer. The ship is beautiful ... Read More
We choose this cruise because of the pricing and the inclusion of the flight in the price. It was a trip of lifetime made within our reach. Also, Viking is a “no” children cruise line something we prefer. The ship is beautiful (cabin sufficient, clean and comfortable. Loved the sunrise in Sydney from our balcony), food very good (we loved Manfredi’s), shows “cruise ship” entertainment, crew absolutely wonderful. Embarkation and disembarkation easy and well organized. One issue was the “description” of excursions in Indonesia. Lombok was listed as an excursion to Senggigi where you can stroll beaches, explore the shops and business along High St. etc....We were driven to a large chain hotel, beach resort. There were no shops, no businesses. Your choices were to walk the beach, swim or each in their restaurant. The Komodo NP was great however it was over 100 degrees F and 90% humidity. Many people were not prepared for the hike. There were no rest stations along the way with water or seating for people. The staff however were sitting in shaded area and some actually offered their seats to those struggling. Needs to be better planned (taking weather into consideration) or described. I don’t think people understood “demanding.” Also, if you have traveled with Viking before you expected each excursion to have different level available. Other excursions were very informative and fun. I would like to have had more time in the embarkation city, Bali and disembarkation city of Sydney. We did stay an additional couple of days in Sydney on our own since the cost under Viking was about 5x that of what we could do on our own. My issues are not with the cruise but with the planning and Viking Air. They did not seem to have any idea what had and had not been done. We paid the extra amount to do reservations early, no one seemed to know that (travel agent issue?). We came into Bali just after midnight and were told we would be picked up by Viking and taken to a hospitality suite to rest and refresh before going to the ship later in the day. After not receiving a confirmation for the hotel, etc. I called again. No one knew anything about that and we were told we would have to take care of that...after a conversation with a supervisor, etc. we were told again were would be picked up and taken to the Sofitel Hotel. Still no confirmation received. I called the day before our trip to make sure all was set only to find out we were being picked up by Viking but would be taken to the pier to await or ship...3 women on a pier at 1:00am awaiting embarkation! Seriously! After a long discussion, a call back and another after hours call, the transportation and hotel were confirmed and paid by Viking. All went smoothly from there. I don’t know if I would use Viking Air again even though air being included is what made the trip affordable since it was an issue from start to finish. My previous working with Viking had always been so smooth and easy. I will say everyone we spoke with were very nice and wanted to help so not sure what happened once the calls were disconnected! I truly enjoy Viking adventures and yes would travel with them again and hopefully will do that again in the near future. Thank you for a wonderful, unforgettable adventure of a lifetime! Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
We have been in love with Viking since our first River Cruise! We've been on 3 Ocean Cruises since. However, our last experience aboard Orion was not up to our expectations: The accommodations at both our pre- and post-tours were ... Read More
We have been in love with Viking since our first River Cruise! We've been on 3 Ocean Cruises since. However, our last experience aboard Orion was not up to our expectations: The accommodations at both our pre- and post-tours were beautiful! What we couldn't figure out was why there was such a problem going from the Hotel to the ship. It seemed to be too many people and not enough busses. Why was this not foreseen? It was very chaotic and time consuming. The same thing happened several times throughout the holiday, at Komodo people were lined up on the pier (98 degrees, F) to get the tender, and it took us over an hour to board the catamaran to go out to the Great Barrier Reef. Compared to our other experiences, Viking seemed very disorganized. We were also discouraged with the choices at the Chef's Table: Almost EVERYTHING was too spicy or, on the only non-Asian night, they served fish.....not for our pallets. We also had much greater expectations for the Planetarium: Other than a very quick explanation of the zodiac by the resident expert (whose company we really enjoyed) it was used for short 3-D movies (which we have at home) and not really used as a planetarium! Although this cruise was our choice, we thought some of the ports were less than interesting or exciting. ie: Thursday Island, Airlie and Newcastle. We should have not depended on the "included" excursions. As we are sure that we will be on other Viking adventures, and we understand that in the Ocean Industry, you are still a "start-up" company, the over-all staff, though mostly bend over backward, is still in the "rookie" stage. As an odd thought, at 18 months, this was the oldest ship that we've been on! Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
Chose this cruise because of the itinerary. Embarkation was kind of chaotic but the disembarkation was very smooth. Viking does not administratively handle single people well. I guest this is not their market. However, more and more ... Read More
Chose this cruise because of the itinerary. Embarkation was kind of chaotic but the disembarkation was very smooth. Viking does not administratively handle single people well. I guest this is not their market. However, more and more people are widowed and traveling alone. Cabin and service was excellent; entertainment and activities were on the low side; dining was good as was expected; included shore excursions were nothing to write home about; optional (paid) excursions were good and some above my expectations. The specialty restaurants were included in the cruise fare and were average. I was expecting a higher class of restaurant. The ship was well appointed and very comfortable. This cruise was on a different level as far as the what the destination has to offer than a European cruise and people have to recognize the history of the area to get the most out of this trip. Viking will have to change their singles policy before I would travel on their Ocean Cruise again. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
I had always wanted to go to Australia. My husband and I had a great time. Processing to board and disembarkation went very smooth. Our time in Bali before setting sail was at a beautiful resort. The entire crew took such good care ... Read More
I had always wanted to go to Australia. My husband and I had a great time. Processing to board and disembarkation went very smooth. Our time in Bali before setting sail was at a beautiful resort. The entire crew took such good care of us. We felt so special, the housekeeping staff always remembered our names and the dining experience wonderful with a wide variety of choices. Having our laundry done was a real treat. The ship was spectacular, always clean and beautifully decorated. We really enjoyed the shipboard talks and entertainment. Most of the shore excursions were extremely hot and physically demanding. Many of the participants had trouble along the way. Use of the tenders to primitive location didn’t always go smoothly, ours hit and pierced the fiberglass hull at Komodo Island. The things we saw were once in a lifetime from the Komodo dragons to the awesome beauty on the towns and shoreline of Australia. I leaned so much about this country that I didn’t know. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
We chose this cruise because of the December sailing dates and because we wanted to snorkel at the Great Barrier Reef. It's our first Viking cruise, and we were not disappointed. From the pre-cruise stay in Nusa Dua at a lovely hotel, ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the December sailing dates and because we wanted to snorkel at the Great Barrier Reef. It's our first Viking cruise, and we were not disappointed. From the pre-cruise stay in Nusa Dua at a lovely hotel, with a great tour to three temple sites, to the interesting shore excursions, we were very pleased with the cruise. Our cabin was spacious and we had a great steward. Dining options were plentiful, and we actually preferred the variety and choice of portion size in the World Cafe for most meals. The specialty menus offered at one of the restaurants were delightful. We particularly enjoyed the lectures and music offered on board, especially the Classical Duo. We chose several "adventurous" excursions: visits to rainforests and snorkeling trips were led by good guides and were educational as well as recreational. It was a pleasure to have a NASA astronaut on board, and his lectures were fascinating. We took advantage of the walking track on Deck 2 and the sauna (and cold pool and hot tubs) throughout the voyage, but especially on sea days. Entertainment in the big auditoriums was good and not too flashy for our more casual style. Service was impeccable. There was only one shore excursion we're glad we avoided: the trip to Komodo Island wasn't well planned, and it was very hot and crowded for those who chose the included tour that day. We were happy to have gone snorkeling instead on a lovely pink beach. We were surprised at how much we enjoyed all our time in Indonesia, especially in Bali. We liked this cruise so much we're signed up for a New Zealand trip in the future. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
We chose this cruise because it encompassed both my husband's bucket list of the Komodo Dragons on Komodo Island and my bucket list of snorkeling the Great Barrier Reef. All the other stops were the cherries on the sundae. Komodo ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it encompassed both my husband's bucket list of the Komodo Dragons on Komodo Island and my bucket list of snorkeling the Great Barrier Reef. All the other stops were the cherries on the sundae. Komodo Island was rough, dry and dusty. It was exactly what we were told to expect. We were able to observe five of the dragons at a watering hole. We, also, saw a couple of juvenile lizards along with other species that are indigenous to the island. Our guides had our safety uppermost in their minds but also to give us a good experience. Very knowledgeable and answered all questions. The two snorkeling adventures that we were able to attend were far beyond anything that I could have imagined. Both snorkeling boats were comfortable and the crews were experienced in handling all comers from the most qualified scuba divers to the beginner snorkeler. I brought back so many pictures of vibrant corals and fish. Couldn't click the camera or turn my head fast enough. We went on many of the included excursions and found the guides to have a true love of their city or region. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
To see Australia. Ship and staff were wonderful. Food in all restaurants was exceptional. Loved all the cities we visited. Wish the cruise had been longer. The weather was hot in some areas but was always comfortable aboard the ship. ... Read More
To see Australia. Ship and staff were wonderful. Food in all restaurants was exceptional. Loved all the cities we visited. Wish the cruise had been longer. The weather was hot in some areas but was always comfortable aboard the ship. Met many wonderful people and made many friends. Lots of entertainment and activities to keep us busy while out to sea. Very informative information was given before each excursion. Cabins were always clean and well stocked. The ship was handled very well by the crew. We often did not even feel us leave or arrive in ports. Loved that the cruise was all adults. We are already looking for another cruise. Would like to do another ocean cruise but would also like to do a river cruise in Europe. We stayed in Sydney for two days after leaving the ship and feel Sydney is a beautiful city. Would love to visit there again sometime. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
Location---never been to Australia. Had a great experience before on a Viking cruise. Dining is awesome. Love the Italian option, but spread it around with main dining room and Chef's Table. Bars really fun. Cabin amazing, but ... Read More
Location---never been to Australia. Had a great experience before on a Viking cruise. Dining is awesome. Love the Italian option, but spread it around with main dining room and Chef's Table. Bars really fun. Cabin amazing, but common areas so appealing that we really did not need the size cabin we took. Entertainment was awesome on some nights and mediocre on others. The Viking singers were awesome with song and dance. But they only did a few shows. The comedian/magician was also great. I'd love for there to be great entertainment every night, not just about half the nights. But the half that were great were really great. Could use an extra day in Cairns. Generally, the excursions were at least good and sometimes amazing. Always well organized and on time. Most memorable experience was in Brisbane when we had cocktalis while an incredible lighting show was happening over the mainland. Finally, the wind got so strong that the heavy chairs and tables on the deck actually started blowing around. Deck crew got us inside about 10 seconds after the rain hit and we got 100% soaked. Too much fun. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
The cruise hit the locations I wanted to visit. Super itinerary, excellent food and service. The alternative gourmet selections, especially the Chefs Table, were excellent. Shipboard internet access was reliable. Great lectures, especially ... Read More
The cruise hit the locations I wanted to visit. Super itinerary, excellent food and service. The alternative gourmet selections, especially the Chefs Table, were excellent. Shipboard internet access was reliable. Great lectures, especially historic perspectives, scientific topics and educational lectures. The crew was reliable and friendly, and most helpful in assisting with excursions, dining reservations, etc. The captain’s frequent updates on the ship’s location, weather, etc. was very welcome. Our Stateroom steward was very attentive and helpful, and he kept our stateroom clean and comfortable, and would often provide useful advice. The physical fitness facilities were first class (and used often). Spa facilities were excellent. Disembarking and security procedures at ports of call were handled professionally and smoothly. The shore excursions, both inclusive and optional, were well designed for maximum effect. I would also like to commend the very effective way Viking handled pre and post cruise accommodations, air travel and administrative issues. I will definitely choose Viking ocean cruises in the future. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
We chose this cruise because it was 30 days across southern Australia, across the Indian Ocean, and parts of South Africa. We had never been on a Viking Ocean Cruise before, only Rivers across Europe and China on Viking. We were surprised ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it was 30 days across southern Australia, across the Indian Ocean, and parts of South Africa. We had never been on a Viking Ocean Cruise before, only Rivers across Europe and China on Viking. We were surprised at how quickly we acclimated to being on the ship for 30 days but the time went quickly. Viking is a first rate operation with passenger comfort a top priority. The ship is beautifully designed with Viking era art throughout. Free WiFi and huge movie list for sea day entertainment. Staff learned our names and treated us like royalty. Wide range of on board entertainment such as lectures from archeologists, astronomers, historians, indigenous people performed their native dances and music, and a troupe of dancers and musicians traveled with us to entertain as well. A free spa with relaxation tables, hot tubs, cold plunge tubs, a frozen grotto filled with snow and a steam room. Massage therapists, beauty salon, and gym rounded out the experience. Laundry facilities on each deck. Small stores with lots of fun articles to buy for souvenirs at decent prices for a cruise ship. It was a small ship but did not feel crowded. Lots of public areas to use with cozy furniture for lounging. Multiple bars and snack stations for around the clock refreshment. Can’t wait to go again!!! Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
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