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9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2015
This was our first ocean cruise and we couldn't have picked a more beautiful ship! Not a speck of dust, a fingerprint, a scuff mark, nor any dirty spot either inside or out! Room was very comfortable and we had a balcony as do all ... Read More
This was our first ocean cruise and we couldn't have picked a more beautiful ship! Not a speck of dust, a fingerprint, a scuff mark, nor any dirty spot either inside or out! Room was very comfortable and we had a balcony as do all the staterooms on this ship. "Classy" was the term used by many travelers. The seasoned travelers all agreed that this was the best ship on which they had ever traveled. Food was amazing and I know I gained 6-7 pounds! The quality of the food was the best and everything was fresh. One of the Maitre d's told me that they never hold anything longer than three hours. Be sure to have the made-from-scratch sticky buns and cinnamon doughnuts made on alternate days! YUM! On board entertainment was wonderful: string quartet, opera, piano, singers in night club, etc. No climbing walls, no ice skating rink, no gambling, no water slides, etc. so this might not be the best choice for children. My biggest disappointment was not in the ship at all but the near lack of free time in ports with only 20-30 minutes at the destinations. Most of the tour guides were very good except for the one we had in Barcelona. (Do not take the panoramic tour of Barcelona!) Naples is a port that could be skipped as far as many were concerned as it was very shabby and buildings were falling apart with rubble and trash in the streets. Even the best part of town ("where movie stars and football players live") was very shabby. Better to have been shuttled over to Capri. One of the most memorable stops was in Valencia, Spain, where we were taken to the Market on our tour. This place must have been as big as a football field inside and had the biggest, most beautiful, blemish-free fruits and vegetables, meat, poultry, fish, etc. If I lived anywhere in Spain, it would have to be near this market. Fabulous! While we are not seasoned ocean travelers, the "rough" seas we had were enough for us to decide to stick to river cruising. Other travelers thought it was nothing and even the captain told us in a private conversation that it was next to nothing and that the ship could handle ten times that. We will leave it to others to enjoy ocean cruising. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2015
This was our first cruise so I do not have a comparison. However it met or exceeded all my expectations. Our cabin was well appointed with adequate storage space. The bed and chairs were very comfortable. We had access to laundry ... Read More
This was our first cruise so I do not have a comparison. However it met or exceeded all my expectations. Our cabin was well appointed with adequate storage space. The bed and chairs were very comfortable. We had access to laundry equipment which we used as we were traveling after the cruise. Our attendant, Arya was very thorough in keeping our cabin clean and well stocked. In fact we were impressed with the quality of service we received in every area. The restaurant managers, waiters, and wait staff were very friendly and attentive. All the members of the staff were helpful, courteous and accommodating. We were very impressed with the food in the World Cafe. We actually enjoyed it more than the specialty restaurants. In fact one meal at Manfredi's was unappetizing and the fish at the The Restaurant was flavorless. But otherwise the food was very good with a wide variety and some dishes were made to order. We thought the excursions were excellent with the exception of the Underground Cisterns. Although the Cisterns were unique and interesting , we only spent 30 minutes there and the rest of the tour was just wasting time. I did not think it was worth the money. The others were great. The Complimentary ones were as good as the optional. Loved Kotor and Dubrovnic. All the guides were wonderful. We were disappointed we missed Pula. We did not take advantage of visiting Venice at 5:00 pm as a replacement of Pula as we were going to stay two night after disembarking. We had made our own arrangements prior to the Cruise in Istanbul and in Venice. In Istanbul, we stayed for two nights in the old City at the Seven Hill Hotel. It is small older boutique hotel with a fabulous rooftop restaurant. We stayed at a Marriott Autograph Collection Hotel that was charming. The Cruise was an experience of a life time and we would definitely consider another Viking Cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2015
I rated this cruise as Very Good only because we had no other cruise to rate it against. The Viking Star was great. Our cabin was surprising in how spacious and comfortable it was. Embarkation and disembarkation was very ... Read More
I rated this cruise as Very Good only because we had no other cruise to rate it against. The Viking Star was great. Our cabin was surprising in how spacious and comfortable it was. Embarkation and disembarkation was very painless. The Staff were all very friendly & obliging. The service was very good, nothing was too much trouble and any little "wrinkles" were ironed out very quickly. The food onboard had only problem - it was so good you just wanted to eat more. The entertainment on board was varied, interesting and enjoyable. We only went on the included shore excursions and found them to be very informative with good and knowledgeable tour guides. Leaving the ship each day for our excursion was easy, very organised and well managed by the staff. As I said we are only novice cruisers and apart from a short Alaskan cruise and a river cruise (with a different Company) this was our first big cruise and we loved it. We loved it so much we are planning our next cruise as at this time. We would like Viking to cruise down the west coast of America, through the Panama Canal up to New York. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2015
We had taken a Viking river cruise 3 years (Rhine) ago and learned then that Viking was building an oceanliner. As we loved the river cruise, we were on board from the start to try the new ship. Loved all of the information emailed to us ... Read More
We had taken a Viking river cruise 3 years (Rhine) ago and learned then that Viking was building an oceanliner. As we loved the river cruise, we were on board from the start to try the new ship. Loved all of the information emailed to us before the Viking Star was built and how beautiful the ship was going to be. We are in our late 50's and were happy there would be no children on board and also liked the size of the ship very much. The staff was always friendly and accommodating. Our room servant Wido, had a genuine big smile on his face everyday and was so helpful. Things that could use improvement: Americans like coffee with CREAM (we call it half and half - cream and milk mixture, not just milk. And the coffee was a bit weak. I think the general wine was a dissapointing too and not enough selection. The food, was always excellent no matter the level of service. The infinity pool was too deep for most women but the temp was perfect. And there could be more shade at that pool like umbrellas. Better bussing of dishes and empty glasses there too. We did not use the larger pool as there seemed to be very dead air there all the time and fumes from the engine. All in all we had a very good experience. The ship was absolutely lovely top to bottom. We plan to go on another river cruise and another ocean cruise. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2015
We booked our cruise after reading a promotional flyer in July 2013. The next two years we spent following the progress of the ship's being built and tested. This to say that, as seasoned travelers who had never taken a cruise and who ... Read More
We booked our cruise after reading a promotional flyer in July 2013. The next two years we spent following the progress of the ship's being built and tested. This to say that, as seasoned travelers who had never taken a cruise and who live in Europe, we were very much anticipating this different adventure. We were not disappointed. Since we handled all our arrangements in terms of arrival and departure, we cannot write about theses issues, but can say that our embarkation and debarkation were handled smoothly and professionally. The ship itself was wonderfully laid out, with so many different lounges, the spa, and quiet corners that I'm not sure we discovered all of it on our time aboard. The Explorer's Lounge is quiet, seemingly private and very comfortable. I met with a group of friends (who all met for the first time on the second day out) nearly every day in the upstairs of the Explorers Lounge. We all had a common issue and, for the most part, were able to share our experiences, solutions and challenges in some privacy. The artwork displayed throughout the ship was excellent and we enjoyed being able to read about the artists and the works in the book provided in our cabin. I'd suggest a lecture or a tour of the artworks as an activity for those who are inclined. So much of the work was thematic for the region in which we were traveling that it was a subtle enhancement to the experience overall. We didn't participate in many of the shipboard activities, lectures, etc. so I can't say much about them, except that we watched a few of the port lectures on the tv in our cabin and found them informative. In Bergen, we skipped the tour as we'd spent three days there in advance of the trip, and is our style, had discovered much of its hidden enchantments on our own. The cruise into the fjord with Flåm as our destination was, by itself, a highlight for both of us. Waking to those cliffs, waterfalls, and draped with long low clouds and mist was absolutely magical. The fact that the Viking Star is so quiet and smooth enriched the experience. We booked, in advance, our own rail trip in Flåm, so we cannot speak to Viking's excursions there. Our excursion was enjoyable and informative, although we hadn't left ourselves enough time to explore much. The Pulpit Rock cruise was great fun and our guide was informative and entertaining. As we are both active and fit,we'd have preferred a hike to Pulpit Rock, and would have scheduled and paid for it on our own, but there wasn't enough time in Stavanger for us to do that and be assured of returning to the ship on time. After our fjord cruise in Stavanger, we had precious little time to explore this charming town which we would have liked to do. Our time in Aalborg, on the walking tour, was well spent. The guide was thorough and spoke nearly-flawless English. My husband got tired of being in a group, but stuck with it. Because the walking tour was long, we also didn't have much time to explore the town, however, we'd already seen most of it so it wasn't necessary for us. We skipped the Copenhagen tours during the day and went out on our own. The added excursion of the Canal Jazz (actually Dixieland, not Jazz) was sensational. The band was great fun and the cruise gave us a view of Copenhagen we'd otherwise have missed. We almost missed the cruise itself as it wasn't well-publicized, and we only found out about it from friends. We didn't take any of the Berlin tours as we planned to spend the month of August, and are now, in Berlin. Gdansk was great, albeit a bit hurried. I appreciated the accommodation to my motion-sickness on the bus tour. The front seat was reserved for us even though we hadn't given much notice. Our guide was very good, well informed and professional. Our only problem came during the walking tour. Our guide was very short, and she either couldn't or wouldn't hold up the group sign, nor, apparently did she did ask anyone taller to do so. As Gdansk was extremely crowded, I got lost from the group on more than one occasion. This was quickly remedied as my husband alerted her and once I walked into the range of her voice on my listening device, I rejoined the group. The day spent sailing was fine and relaxing. However, most of the window area lounge chairs were taken up the whole day by people who camped out on them, left their belongings for long periods of time in order to save their places, and made it impossible for anyone else to use them. Bad manners. St. Petersburg: the bus tour wasn't the best. It was difficult to see much. Fortunately, we'd booked the canal cruise and the weather cooperated by giving us clear skies and mild temperatures—a fortuitous happenstance. The cruise was informative and we had much better views and viewpoints than on the bus tour. As an added bonus, we toured the Church of Our Savior on Spilled Blood and the St. Isaac's church. Our guide, Irina, was excellent, the best we had on the whole trip. She was our guide again the next day for The Hermitage. The next day, we started early for our tour early and arrived at the Hermitage before the crowds, being admitted to what amounted to be a nearly-private touring. Our guide, once again, was knowledgeable, complete and very well educated in both history and art. This s an excursion not to be missed! Especially with Irina. She knew how to navigate this huge museum, allowing us time to see many masterpieces without any crowds at all. We had time to linger with the Rembrandts and many others. Quite a few of my fotos have no people in them—remarkable considering the time of year, the venue and the extremely long line waiting to get in after we left. Definitely the best excursion of the whole trip. We cancelled the walking tour of Helsinki and went in on the shuttle. It's a charming city, and it's one we may return to on our own. We took the bus tour of Stockholm, and as I hadn't reserved the front, we were farther back. Fortunately, I had no motion sickness, but the tour was a wash in that we couldn't see anything. We stayed on our own a week in Stockholm, so we got to know the city fairly well. As to dining: we ate only once at the Chef's Table and had the Sweet and Salty meal. It was sublime, and spoiled us for all our other meals. We ate lunch and breakfast almost exclusively at the World Cafe. The food was very good, not excellent, but not at all common cafeteria food either. The selection was good. The Pool Grill was also good. Service at both was very good. All the wait staff were polite, friendly and professional. Our favorite restaurant was The Restaurant and we had dinner there frequently. The choice of meals varied nightly, with some constants. The quality never varied—it was always excellent. As was the service. The Beef Wellington is to die for, absolutely great, as were all the fish dishes. Our only dining disappointment was at Manfredi's. The waiters were very good, and apologetic that out food took so long to arrive. The chicken one night was overlooked, and my one pasta dish wasn't al dente, nor particularly tasty. When we spoke to the maître, he was surly and defensive. He tried to explain to us how each meal was individually prepared, etc. as if we had no idea how a well run restaurant of reputation operates. Rather than argue with him, we simply didn't return there. We heard from others that they'd had great meals there, so I assume the quality varies. In summary, I'd say it was a wonderful trip, made all the more so by the friends we made on it, and the sights we saw. We may taking a Viking Star cruise of the Eastern Mediterranean in the future. It depends on if one is scheduled for the Fall, as we normally spend our summers in the States and return to Barcelona for the Fall. 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6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2015
My wife and I chose this cruise as our first cruise ever because it was going to destinations that were on our list in the Baltic, and the ship would be newly built and crewed. It was also smaller than the large vessels at under 1000 ... Read More
My wife and I chose this cruise as our first cruise ever because it was going to destinations that were on our list in the Baltic, and the ship would be newly built and crewed. It was also smaller than the large vessels at under 1000 passengers and every cabin had a balcony. We weren't disappointed. Passenger service was very good and the staff was friendly. The only down side was an excursion to Berlin which, due to traffic problems, didn't live up to our expectations. We filled our stops with excursions, perhaps too many. There were stops in Norway (Flan, Stavanger, Bergen), Denmark (Aalborg, Copenhagen), Poland (Gdansk), Germany (Berlin), Estonia (Tallinn), Russia (St Petersburg), Finland (Helsinki), and Sweden (Stockholm). We certainly enjoyed our visit to the Hermitage in St Pete. We didn't participate much in the onboard entertainment since we usually rested after our excursion packed days. However, we did enjoy the pre-port lectures on the cities and cultures. The food was very good with a large variety of settings. We really appreciated the choices of gelato after lunch and dinner, which came with complimentary house wine. All in all it was a memorable time. We have booked another different trip on the same ship for 2016. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2015
Overall our cruise was what we had expected from Viking Cruises although this was our first trip. The ship was superb, if bigger than we expected, but never felt crowded even during embarking and disembarking. The staff was always warm and ... Read More
Overall our cruise was what we had expected from Viking Cruises although this was our first trip. The ship was superb, if bigger than we expected, but never felt crowded even during embarking and disembarking. The staff was always warm and friendly and most accommodating. The food excellent and generous . We enjoyed all of our tours and tour guides. We are looking forward to enjoying a river cruise in the future as so many told us how wonderful they were. All in all a very satisfying experience. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2015
Overall, this was a wonderful cruise from Barcelona to Bergen. The food was great! The staff was friendly, helpful, and professional. Our stateroom was very comfortable, especially the nice bathroom and the comfortable bed. The spa ... Read More
Overall, this was a wonderful cruise from Barcelona to Bergen. The food was great! The staff was friendly, helpful, and professional. Our stateroom was very comfortable, especially the nice bathroom and the comfortable bed. The spa treatment for my wife, her first, was awesome. She really appreciated the attention to privacy and comfort given by Natalie. We both enjoyed the music by Lazlo and the piano music in the Atrium and the Winter Garden. On the other hand, The computer system really messed up our bookings at Chef's Table and Manfreddie's. We had to take whatever time was left. Very disappointing! Buy, at least, we did get to sample their tasty food. The service in both restaurants was superb, as was the food. When we booked and paid in advance for our shore excursions, we were expecting the time for each as quoted in the on line booking. Unfortunately, we only found out the night before when the bulletin for the next day's activities was left in our room at turn down time. The problem occurred when we were booked at a different time, as several excursions for the same tour were listed. My wife had a spa appointment booked on line before we left for our cruise. Had she not inquired earlier in the day, we would have had to pay for the spa appointment that she missed due to a change in excursion time the next day. Fortunately, the error was caught in time to change her appointment time. One last thing, my wife and I were spending our on board ship credit that we received due to the 'at sea' additional days, and I was billed $165.00 for a 'VIKING M NVY FLEECE L' item code:809976. The tag showed $65.00. Bummer. It was billed to my American Express credit card. Otherwise, the cruise was a wonderful experience. Hopefully, the glitches are now resolved. Kudos to the entire staff and crew. We adored the ship's captain! Thank you for hearing me out, and for a memorable cruise. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2015
While I realize that there will always be a few glitches in a brand new ship overall we had a wonderful cruise aboard Viking Star. The ship itself is gorgeous and very comfortable, the food incredible and the service was superb. We had ... Read More
While I realize that there will always be a few glitches in a brand new ship overall we had a wonderful cruise aboard Viking Star. The ship itself is gorgeous and very comfortable, the food incredible and the service was superb. We had done a river cruise and this was our first ocean cruise, we did not want to cruise on a ship with 2000 other people, the Star was a perfect size and we found it very spacious with lots of places to meet people or just sit by ourselves if we wanted to read a book and be pampered. We stayed an extra 2 nights in Barcelona at the NH Calderon hotel which was Arranged through Viking, a very nice hotel and well located, great breakfast buffet. The port activities were as expected, similar to a river cruise with local guides escorting and explaining the history of the area and important landmarks. We loved the cruise and will probably be planning another ocean cruise in the near future. We stopped in Cadiz, Cartenega, Gibraltor, Lisbon, Paris, London and ended in Bergen. The one glitch was we only had 1 day in Paris and London because of tides on the Seine and Thames rivers, Viking did compensate us for the shorter stay. The only negative I can say about our whole experience was getting our air arranged with Viking. We booked business class and were told that since we were on an ocean cruise we could not get Air Plus and therefore could not reserve our airline seats until we got our tickets which was 30 days before departure. After repeated contact with Viking air about this issue we had to wait and hope that we could at least get seats beside each other for the 10 hour flight, I hope Viking improves this part of their service. Read Less
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