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Sail Date: November 2017
We have done several river cruises with Viking and were curious about Viking Ocean. The price was good and had free air. We then continue to Cuba on a back to back for a total of 18 days. We found the staff outstanding, the went out of ... Read More
We have done several river cruises with Viking and were curious about Viking Ocean. The price was good and had free air. We then continue to Cuba on a back to back for a total of 18 days. We found the staff outstanding, the went out of there way to make your cruise enjoyable. The entertainment was very good. The food was very good, and we enjoyed having the option of dinning rooms without additional charges. Our favorite was Manfredi's. As expected, the ports on the Transatlantic were limited, and the shore excursions were a disappointment. However, I enjoyed the Cultural Cuba ports and shore excursions. The Background information and speakers were very good, and made the sea days enjoyable. I had a knee replacement, so I found the main pool hard to get into, and only used it once. The infinity pool at the back of the ship is small, but very enjoyable. The spa therapy pool is very nice, my used it every day. The seating around the the pools were very comfortable. We enjoyed sitting outside the Wintergarden, it was very quiet and comfortable. The pool grill had a great selecton of hamburgers and the onions rings are great. Afternoon tea was fun, and the pastries in the Explorers' Lounge were outstanding. The cabin and balcony was comfortable, but our closet was in an awkward location next to the bed. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2017
Very poor communication during the year-long reservation period about changes in times and places. Excursions were spent riding a bus to get somewhere for a very short rather hurried view of the place. Had a jr suite that was supposed to ... Read More
Very poor communication during the year-long reservation period about changes in times and places. Excursions were spent riding a bus to get somewhere for a very short rather hurried view of the place. Had a jr suite that was supposed to allow earlier boarding—-had to inquire after original check in and finally allowed to board ahead of some. This jr suite was also to have stocked mini bar with drinks and snacks. We requested wine and were constantly resupplied with liquor and had to call to get corrected. On about the third day we ate some of the snacks—-they were never resupplied. It’s all too bad——we had booked this cruise a year ahead (to get free airfare but that didn’t go away as we were told it would if not booked by a certain date) and were so looking forward to it. I’m very sorry it and Viking were so disappointing and not the top notch cruise I was expecting. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2017
Itinerary: Miami, at sea, Key West, Cienfuegos 3 days, at sea, Miami Viking should stick to the European cruise market and forget about the Caribbean. If you were thinking about taking a Viking Caribbean Cruise don’t do it or at ... Read More
Itinerary: Miami, at sea, Key West, Cienfuegos 3 days, at sea, Miami Viking should stick to the European cruise market and forget about the Caribbean. If you were thinking about taking a Viking Caribbean Cruise don’t do it or at least wait a few years until they work out the kinks. I did not appreciate experiencing their growing pains on my dollar. To start, the itinerary I paid for was Key West, Havana overnight, Belize and Cozumel. Viking marketed this cruise before they had approval to dock in Havana, so in August we were informed that they were not approved and the itinerary no longer included Havana, Belize or Cozumel. Viking attempted to make up for it by giving a $250 ship board credit per person and an included tour on each day in Cienfuegos. The credit did help ease the annoyance a little, but if I knew then what I know now I would have wanted a full refund (not that this was an option). EXCURSIONS: IT IS AN 8 HOUR DRIVE ROUND TRIP FROM CIENFUEGOS TO HAVANA. The tours included a full day in Havana excursion (12 hours) or a 1.5 day overnight in Havana to make up for the itinerary change. Viking did not inform anyone that this meant a 4 hour bus ride each way to Havana. The Trinidad excursion was a little less then 2 hours each way. Yes, there is a bathroom on the bus. The excursions were a complete cluster the first day in Cuba. We waited 2.5 hours to clear immigration, exchange money and get the tour started. So, if you were on the 12 hour excursion to Havana you spent over 2 hours waiting, 8 hours driving and less than 2 hours to actually see Havana. The Trinidad excursion was also rushed due to the late start. The lunch was good, but again very rushed. The streets were so hilly and uneven that a few people had to request a cab for the way back to the tour bus. Do not take this tour if you have mobility issues. No time to shop or explore on your own. Cienfuegos on foot also felt rushed even though we started on time. Cigar factory part of tour was not worth the stop, but overall tour was pretty good. Tour guide couldn’t get the QuietVox to work so we couldn’t hear anything. We finally had 30 minutes to shop at the end. The Ship: The ship was elegant, beautiful and spotless. No crowds and no kids. Balconies in every stateroom. This ship is EXACTLY the same as the Viking Sea. I do think all the Viking ocean ships are designed the same, but even the menu and entertainment are exactly the same. The food: I am comparing the food on the Viking Sun to the very high bar that Viking set for themselves on my Viking Sea Ocean Mediterranean Cruise. The Wintergarden service was very slow and disorganized the first couple days. Manfredi’s served us Caprese salad with frozen mozzarella and cold pasta. On the Mediterranean Cruise Viking tailored the menu to each country we visited as we were in the region. They did not put much effort into creating a Cuban cuisine. They used the same menu as the other ship. However, the sushi was amazing and the pool grill had excellent service. The drinks: On the first sea day, it was as if Viking was surprised that people drink mojitos and pina coladas and hang out at the pool on a Caribbean cruise. Everyone was complaining that the pina coladas were not that good. For the price of this cruise you expect the drinks to be done right and not made with cheap mixer. I was also surprised that Viking would pull something like being out of stock of the nicer tequila included in the drink package. I suspect the itinerary change fiasco cut into their profit margin so they tried to save money in ways they thought would go unnoticed. We noticed. If this were a cheap cruise all these things would have been forgivable and even expected, but this was a VERY expensive cruise and the value was just not there. So you might as well take the more affordable cruise from the cruise lines that are experienced in this region. I have sailed two Viking Ocean cruises and I am not sure I like the all inclusive pricing. You end up paying a premium for things you don't use or like. While I appreciate the culinary artistry of the Chef's Table it was not good enough to pay more for. You get to reserve the specialty restaurants based on price of your cabin. The higher price for first dibs is NOT worth it. The main restaurant and casual dining venue are just as good. If you don't drink wine you still pay for it. The included tours are usually just OK and you have to pay for the better ones. They purposely schedule tours so you will not be able to take the included excursion and another optional one. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2017
The Viking Sun was seven week old when we boarded -- gorgeous! Some rough spots with a new ship, but minimal and resolved. But the itinerary was lacking --- way too much time on buses (nice as they were, with great tour guides). If the ... Read More
The Viking Sun was seven week old when we boarded -- gorgeous! Some rough spots with a new ship, but minimal and resolved. But the itinerary was lacking --- way too much time on buses (nice as they were, with great tour guides). If the ship was too large to go into to the shallow Havana harbor, why not stay outside the harbor and use the tenders since it had to use these in Cienfuegos anyway? Overall food and service were good, but service was much better for dinner when 300 people were still off-ship on excursions. We were disappointed in the Italian speciality restaurant -- menu was plastic, crowded tables; service and food were OK, but not special. The Captial Table speciality restaurant was excellent -- interesting fixed menu, with supurb service. We heartily recommend the Viking Sun, but not the itinerary if only one port in Cuba. As far as we knew there was not an outreach to the LGBT community until we asked for a designated meeting place. On other cruise lines this has been included in their standard schedule. Viking did accommodate an announcement after we asked (with a very good turn out), but no one from staff came to welcome us, as is typical on other lines. Disappointing overall. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2017
We chose this cruise to see Cuba and their culture before it changes. Knew nothing about Viking Ocean Cruises until reading reviews. To our great surprise this turned out to be one of if not the best cruise we have taken. The Viking ... Read More
We chose this cruise to see Cuba and their culture before it changes. Knew nothing about Viking Ocean Cruises until reading reviews. To our great surprise this turned out to be one of if not the best cruise we have taken. The Viking Sun is almost brand new which is very apparent as you look around at all the modern technology and spotlessness of everything. Room was a Deluxe Veranda on deck 3. Very nice with comfortable bed, sitting area, coffee maker and mini-bar. Food was excellent even in the buffet which is where we ate almost every meal. Wide variety of choices including great sushi and seafood. Servers were very good if you needed something to drink, etc. Bar staff did a wonderful job of making drinks correctly and quickly. Good entertainment and limited activities but didn't choose this cruise for those things. First stop was Key West which have been to before so just went into town to walk around have a drink and eat Key West pink shrimp. Next stop was Cienfuegos, Cuba located on the South side of the island. The shore excursion we chose was an overnight stay in Havana at the Melia' Habana that included transportation, lunch, dinner, a wonderful show at the Tropicana and breakfast before returning to the ship. Oh, did I not mention that a group of 74 restored vintage American cars from the 50's picked the group at the hotel and took us in a caravan to the Tropicana. We toured Old Havana, shopped and stopped at the Bay of Pigs Museum on the way back to the ship. Didn't choose to go on another shore excursion because we were happy to enjoy the ship. We liked Viking so much that we booked a cruise with them for next Fall. We will continue cruising with Viking. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2017
I chose this cruise for the combination of Cuba and Viking Ocean. Originally we were suppose to dock in Havana but Viking didn't get docking rights...so the itinnery was changed to Cienfuego. Viking gave us an all inclusive overnight ... Read More
I chose this cruise for the combination of Cuba and Viking Ocean. Originally we were suppose to dock in Havana but Viking didn't get docking rights...so the itinnery was changed to Cienfuego. Viking gave us an all inclusive overnight in Havana and free excursions in Cienfuego to compensate us. as well as on board credit. We were a little nervouss because of the change in itinnery and news reports of diplomatic problems. Non of these were an issue while traveling in cuba. All the guides were knowledgeble and friendly The excursions were excellent-beyond expectations and the ship was beyond expectations Ship was elegant, Cabin was attractive, service was also beyond expectations. Wonderful spa experience, wonderful food. Afternoon tea was superb. Felt like a treasured guest...no one was trying to sell us anything This was the most elegant cruise we have been on and we have been cruising for about 50 years. We will definitely cruise with Viking Ocean again..and will rprobably try Viking River Cruises Read Less
Sail Date: November 2017
We chose this cruise because of the destination and the value of the cruise - it was offered at a really good rate. The onboard lectures were informative and entertaining, and the shore excursions were likewise. The ship's ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the destination and the value of the cruise - it was offered at a really good rate. The onboard lectures were informative and entertaining, and the shore excursions were likewise. The ship's accommodations were outstanding, and the staff were uniformly helpful and attentive. The cuisine on the ship was fresh and tasty, with a good variety and new items each meal.Viking Cruises handled all the details about getting our visas for Cuba. We also appreciated the many items included in the cost of the cruise, such as wifi, wine with meals, and so forth, because these have been add-ons on for extra cost on cruises we have done on other cruise lines. One disappointment was that the ship docked solely in Cienfuegos, and the trip overland to Havana was long; if there could have been docking on Havana one day, and the other days in Cienfuegos, that would have been preferable. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2017
Wanted to experience Cuba Cabin attendants were excellent. Being handicapped and using a wheelchair or walker I used room service frequently. Precious was an apt name for my attendant. In every way she was precious. I appreciate ... Read More
Wanted to experience Cuba Cabin attendants were excellent. Being handicapped and using a wheelchair or walker I used room service frequently. Precious was an apt name for my attendant. In every way she was precious. I appreciate the wide variety of television selections.I chose not to go on the land tour of Cuba. I was delighted finding on the television the biography of Albert Einstein. I enjoyed an entertaining and enlightening day in the cabin. I appreciated a cabin large enough for my chair and walker. Having a balcony made it a pleasure to enjoy the view whether of the waves of the sea or the other ocean ships passing by. Also it was nice to be able to open the door for fresh ocean air. The choice of which gourmet restaurants shall I try was difficult. The menus were all tempting. Each offered entrees I couldn't resist. Service was always excellent, I think I tried every one. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2017
We code Viking as they were one of the first cruise lines to travel to Cuba. We had been on several Viking river cruises and were looking forward to the brand new ocean ship. The ship was amazing from our cabin to the entertainment to ... Read More
We code Viking as they were one of the first cruise lines to travel to Cuba. We had been on several Viking river cruises and were looking forward to the brand new ocean ship. The ship was amazing from our cabin to the entertainment to the fitness room to the spa to the restaurants. We especially enjoyed the Rat Pack singers as part of the entertainment onboard. We each had a massage and enjoyed the snow grotto. The fitness rooms had all of the equipment we needed to work out while at sea. Our cabin had a coffee maker, small refrigerator with complimentary water, snacks and soft drinks that were replenished every day. We also had complimentary robes and slippers and binoculars in our cabin. Our cabin steward was attentive to our every wish. Our first stop was to Key West where we sailed on a catamaran for a snorkeling adventure at a reef filled with colorful fish. Havana is an amazing city and we enjoyed our ride in a 1952 Chevy convertible to dinner at a Cuban fusion dinner. We were then treated to an evening at the legendary Tropicana Club followed by staying overnight in a 5 Star hotel in Havana. The next morning we toured Fusterland in Havana before heading to the Bay of Pigs museum, I highly recommend visiting Cuba before it changes and traveling on a Viking Ocean ship. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2017
This was my third cruise with Viking. We were able to drive to the Port of Miami so embarkation and disembarkation were extremely easy, along with parking at the terminal. Our cabin included a sitting area, large closet, plenty of ... Read More
This was my third cruise with Viking. We were able to drive to the Port of Miami so embarkation and disembarkation were extremely easy, along with parking at the terminal. Our cabin included a sitting area, large closet, plenty of drawers, and balcony with chairs and table. The ship has two specialty dining rooms, a main restaurant, cafeteria style restaurant, plus several other areas with food. The very friendly crew was from lots of different countries and it was interesting finding out where they were from and learning about these countries. The ocean ships of Viking are smaller ships which is what appeals to me. This was Viking's first cruise to Cuba so there were some snags with the excursions but having been with them before and seeing how well run their excursions always are I am sure their next cruise was very well organized. The destination lectures were very informative and knowledgeable. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2017
Now that Cuba is open we wanted to see what was happening there. My wife visited Cuba in 1980's as a travel agent and saw how poor the country was. This time I was surprised how poor it still was. Beautiful architecture was in ... Read More
Now that Cuba is open we wanted to see what was happening there. My wife visited Cuba in 1980's as a travel agent and saw how poor the country was. This time I was surprised how poor it still was. Beautiful architecture was in disrepair - thought some reconstruction was evident. Disappointed that Cuba would not let our small ship dock In Havana, however it allowed us to see the country side during the 4 1/2 hour bus trip. An over night excursion allowing use to stay over night in Havana was very special. Wonderful 5-star hotel, great dinner, a ride in the old American cars and a visit to the Copacabana night club highlighted the excursion. Little to see in Cienfuegos. This was the Viking Sun' first cruise. A wonderful new ship. We had a, Explorer cabin - one of the best we have ever cruised in. Large walk-in closets, direct view out the bow of the ship and may other special features. Truely a five-star-cruise. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2017
In November 2016 we experienced Viking Ocean cruises for the first time on the Viking Sea and we were very impressed. In my 5 star review on C.C. I said "Well, I am delighted to say that out of the 15 or so cruises to date this one ... Read More
In November 2016 we experienced Viking Ocean cruises for the first time on the Viking Sea and we were very impressed. In my 5 star review on C.C. I said "Well, I am delighted to say that out of the 15 or so cruises to date this one was the best by quite a way!" Sadly our experiences on this cruise on the Viking Sky failed to meet our high expectations in many, but not all areas. My first piece of advice is that under no circumstances should you buy the Viking 2 night Pre-Cruise package. It was unsatisfactory in almost every way: For more details see my hotel review on t.advisor (Hilton Cabana Miami Beach). Viking's included tour was short, badly organised and in some cases the information given by the guide was just plain wrong. Transfer to the port from the hotel included the added bonus of a long and loud 'serenade' from a bus driver who should never give up his day job: although is it safe to drive with one hand while holding the microphone with the other: a practice that occurred on other tours during our cruise? Embarkation was quick and efficient but we were greeted ,upon entering the ship, with an underwhelming one quarter full glass of fiz. The cabin was pristine and just as good as the one on the Viking Sea and we were well looked after by our efficient and pleasant steward Dian, during our 14 night cruise. Food was another reason for our return and we ate Dinner in Manfredis on three occasions and I am pleased to report that this was a outstanding experience in every way: the food was delicious and the service impeccable. We did try the Chefs Table one night but found it to be a little pretentious and some of the food and wine was not to our taste. Dinner in the main dining room was of a high quality, with good service and a friendly atmosphere but on the odd occasion a long line to get in was a little irritating. You may have noticed the rather odd title to my review and now is the time to explain. There were food supply problems on our cruise: items that they didn't have or ran out of. These included mozzarella, granola, greek yogurt, some types of wine, dark beer (both types); we took on more in Columbia and then ran out again! and BANANAS. The lack of bananas given the ports of call we had visited before new supplies were eventually procured does not suggest great catering management! This leads me to another unsatisfactory aspect of our cruise .The included tours were plagued with problems. They seldom ran to time: some were very late, the guides were variable and in some cases one had to question what Viking were thinking: for example the visit to a "Craft and Heritage centre" in Montego Bay beggared belief: most items were probably made in China! The two tender ports were fraught with difficulties and I felt that the Viking staff in charge lacked experience and organisation. We enjoyed the entertainment in general and were particularly impressed by Iain James Kennedy's lectures. On board sea mammals expert Robin and partner, were a mine of interesting information. Some of the show productions were very similar to the ones on Viking Sea but we very much enjoyed the National Dance Company of Belize. Mamsen's was wonderful for breakfast and afternoon cake and the Pool Grill was a great venue with good food. To be honest, we tried the afternoon tea in the Wintergarden and found it a little underwhelming. Room service was rather variable. sometimes it was very good but on other occasions mistakes were made with the order and breakfasts were always earlier than ordered: sometimes far too early. The general layout of the ship is impressive. There is plenty of space and it is very easy to find a quiet spot. The free wifi worked pretty well compared to other ships we'd been on and the general attitude of the staff was friendly and welcoming in most circumstances. However, my feeling is that this ship is still a 'work in progress' This company have a place at the top of a very competitive cruise industry. They charge quite high rates to 'journey in Viking comfort.' On this cruise package did it justify these high rates? Sadly, my answer is no. One last piece of advice for the guests with later flights. We were delivered by Viking to Miami airport by 10.15am as part of their package for a 5.15pm flight to the U.K. We sat with our luggage for over 4 hours, before an understaffed BA check in took them off us. Organise something before the airport would be a sensible thing to do. I have asked Viking to contact me regarding my concerns, particularly with the Pre-cruise part of my package. It's early days, but I have not yet received any communication. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2017
In the past we had taken a river and one other Viking Ocean cruise. We choose this cruise to see this part of the world. I also wanted to avoid going on a long plane trip to Europe. Last year we very much enjoyed the West Indies Cruise. ... Read More
In the past we had taken a river and one other Viking Ocean cruise. We choose this cruise to see this part of the world. I also wanted to avoid going on a long plane trip to Europe. Last year we very much enjoyed the West Indies Cruise. This cruise was a slower pace as we had 4 sea days out of the 15 day cruise. The ship is very comfortable and the food and service we found to be very good. We were disappointed with some of the included excursions. Transportation and lack of guides were the biggest problem in one port. Also some of the optional excursions were cancelled due to weather related issues. One optional excursions was two hours from the port and three hours back due to traffic. I most likely would have chosen a different excursion had I known it was such a long bus ride. This was the first time Viking had done this Itenary and needs to rework some of the offerings and better prepare people on the ship. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2017
The itinerary was excellent. It included part of the Panama Canal and Cartagena, Colombia, which we were interested in visiting. The addition of sea days (we did not have them on our last Ocean Cruise) allowed for more shipboard ... Read More
The itinerary was excellent. It included part of the Panama Canal and Cartagena, Colombia, which we were interested in visiting. The addition of sea days (we did not have them on our last Ocean Cruise) allowed for more shipboard activities which we enjoyed. We liked the length of the cruise--15 days-- and had been on a Viking Ocean Cruise before so knew the ship would be delightful, which it was. We have taken now four Viking Cruises--two river and two ocean--and find Viking to be always interested in the passengers and their satisfaction with the cruise in all ways. They are very responsive to suggestions and/or concerns and try to address those immediately. We have always found the food to be of high quality and the entire crew and staff of the ship are welcoming and pleasant. We looked forward to the two alternative restaurants, Manfredi's and The Chef's Table and we were not disappointed. The ship's Captain Bengt Gustafsson was very visible interacting with both crew and passengers. We had not experienced this on any other cruise and were most impressed. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2017
We used in the past and enjoyed everything about the experience. We liked the included excursions, but we also liked the option of choosing other excursions and the choices available were very good. We were always taken care of on the ... Read More
We used in the past and enjoyed everything about the experience. We liked the included excursions, but we also liked the option of choosing other excursions and the choices available were very good. We were always taken care of on the excursions with comfortable buses or vans with appropriate restroom breaks. We also liked the excellent port talks and various lectures. Although some of the lectures were not my cup of tea, the variety provided something for everyone. The speakers were very knowledgeable and some of them were very entertaining as well. We much preferred the lectures and learning about our visit to the various areas over spending time in a casino. Also, the friendly service by all staff creates a very enjoyable environment; they were always helpful and pleasant. The food was excellent. Talks, lectures and activities always started on time, unless it was out of the control of the Viking staff. Everything is very organized, from the embarkation to the the disembarking--it was so easy to be able to enjoy our time. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2017
We previously traveled on a Viking River Cruise and were extremely pleased. We wanted to experience a Viking Ocean Cruise so choose this one. Truly enjoyed the professionalism of the staff. All were extremely pleasant and went out ... Read More
We previously traveled on a Viking River Cruise and were extremely pleased. We wanted to experience a Viking Ocean Cruise so choose this one. Truly enjoyed the professionalism of the staff. All were extremely pleasant and went out of their way to be helpful. The main dining room offered so many options to choose from and all were presented and tasted wonderful. We especially enjoyed the soups! Enjoyed the various dining options on board, the cafe, the poolside restaurant, the Aquavit Terrace and room service. Afternoon tea at the Wintergarden was very enjoyable. The entertainment provided was so diverse that there was always something to see, do or learn. Enjoyed the presentations of each port of call explaining what we would see and all the options we could choose for excursions. The included excursions were well planned. The tour operators were knowledgeable, pleasant and provided a lot of information about their country and everyday living which added to flavor of each port. And there was always a place to sit and relax, whether on deck, at the pool, library or your balcony. You could be as busy or as relaxed as you wanted. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2017
We wanted a guided tour because of health issues last year. I thought it would be easier to travel and have someone else plan it. Also, we have not been to any of the countries on that tour (and even Key West) and I thought we could ... Read More
We wanted a guided tour because of health issues last year. I thought it would be easier to travel and have someone else plan it. Also, we have not been to any of the countries on that tour (and even Key West) and I thought we could check them out to see if we wanted to go back and stay a week or two. We normally travel on our own, making all of our own reservations and private tours. This was our first big ship cruise ever ( we are in our 70's). We have traveled the world, driving in Greece, Italy, New Zealand, etc.,etc. Because we are used to being on our own, the 900 passengers on Viking Sky were too many for us. However, we thoroughly enjoyed dining and talking with other passengers. The ship did not feel crowded, but navigating the shore excursions, the busses, waiting in the dinner line. That was not something we enjoyed. The food was too upscale for me...I know this sounds weird, but I am used to eating where the locals eat when traveling. I missed the ethnic foods. I probably am a food peasant. We are mostly vegetarian, would have liked more interesting and spicy vegetarian food. We did manage to get some vegetarian Indian food on request one night, and that was super nice. I don't eat lobster, steak, pork, ham, calamari, fish, etc. The Chef's table was wasted on me. I thought the meal we had was pretty bad (jellied cucumbers, ox tail soup -yuck), The lamb was okay, but the only really good part was dessert. Since you have to sign up ahead of time and the menu is fixed, I didn't think we had much choice but to go on our scheduled night. I think some other nights the food would have been more to our liking. The Italian specialty restaurant (Manford's?) was delicious. Actually, I ate a lot of pasta on the ship and it was delicious. I had a hamburger one day at the pool grill and it was dry. I do eat hamburger once in awhile. I liked the sit down dining as opposed to buffet style. I couldn't have any wine during the cruise because of health issues, so can't comment on that. The cabin maids were wonderful. Actually, all the staff on the ship were extremely caring and hospitable, always smiling no matter what, every single person. Service was superior everywhere. In regard to the shore excursions, we are used to something much different since we travel alone. The Embera shore excursion was the best. The Aviary in Columbia, the Panama Canal and the river ride in Jamaica were also good tours. I don't feel like I saw much of each country though. I can hardly remember them. We watched the educational lectures about each port and really liked that we could view them in our room. We did not go for the nightly entertainment. Just not our thing. The ship is beautiful and the lounges are very well done with interesting and educational decor. Embarkation and Disembarkation went smoother than I expected. No big line for embarkation. We came to the port on our own. Organized disembarkation but kind of a mess at the airport checkin. We have signed up for a river cruise and I think the smaller ship (and a whole lot less people) will be better for us. I rate the cruise as excellent, because it really was. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2017
My husband and I felt the time had come to go on another cruise. After all, 30 years have gone by since our last voyage. So, why not? We researched different cruise lines and talked to a few of our friends who had sailed on the Viking ... Read More
My husband and I felt the time had come to go on another cruise. After all, 30 years have gone by since our last voyage. So, why not? We researched different cruise lines and talked to a few of our friends who had sailed on the Viking River Boats. They told us that they had a wonderful time sailing on Viking. So after listening and researching, we decided to "take the plunge." We made our reservations through the travel club that we have a membership with, and they got us connected with a Viking Travel Representative. We were really impressed on how fast the the transaction went on receiving all of the necessary information that was needed to even get on the ship. Especially when it came to getting our passports renewed. And, sailing on a brand new ship was definitely going to be a great experience! We booked all of our shore excursions ahead of time, and also made a few dinner reservations. Whew! Got that out of the way. I got travel insurance for "in case something happened." Thank goodness nothing did. Bought a few new clothes, packed and off we went to our new adventure. We so impressed on how easy embarkation and dis embarkation went. Especially when we disembarked in Miami, the Captain was there to say farewell and hoped we sail on Viking again. But I am getting a little ahead of myself. The dining on the Viking Sky was wonderful! Best of all, it was interesting to see and taste the Chef's interpretation of American Cuisine. Especially the chocolate chip cookies. Instead of mixing the chocolate chips in the dough, the chocolate chips were put on the top of the cookie. The dining areas were nice because one could see where the ship was sailing to during the meal, and if you wanted to eat outside on deck, you could. Best of all, it was open seating. I met so many people from all over the world who had come on this voyage just to experience being on a brand new ship, just by asking if my husband and I could join them at the table. What a treat! And to listen to their travel tales that they had taken on various Viking voyages was absolutely fascinating. We were very impressed with our state room. It was very comfortable, and having an outside balcony was great. I took a lot of pictures from the balcony. Especially when the ship was coming into another port or leaving. Plus, having a small refrigerator to keep our drinks cold was definitely handy. The nice surprise though was the bathroom not only having a heated floor, but the towel rack was heated, too! And, one must not forget the two cabin boys (gentlemen). Dave and and his assistant (Wong?) were absolutely wonderful! No request (within reason) was too big to handle. During the 15 day voyage, these two gentlemen almost became family. They were always cheerful, and constantly kept asking if there was anything we needed. When the voyage came to an end, it was almost hard to say "adios." We wished them wish well on their next voyages and hoped we might meet again. The ship's stores were very nicely done up. But the one area that came in handy was a little corner of a store that sold cough drops, candy, etc. One never knows what might have be forgotten. This little store just might have what you're missing. Another amenity that was available to anyone was the self-service laundry room. I did spend a lot of time done there. I also found myself explaining to a lot of people how to operate the washer and dryers. Please keep in mind, the ship does provide the laundry soap and does have an ironing board and iron for ironing clothes. My husband and I did goes on the shore excursions as planned. There were times that there were a few cliches that took place. But we did have a good time in learning about the different ports and cities that we were transported to. And the shopping at most of the ports was fun. One must keep in mind to always ask if the U.S. dollars is accepted or does one have to make an exchange of currency before going ashore. There were a few excursions that we felt were too short. Since time was always a factor, there was never enough time to really experience the excursion as it should had been. The evening entertainment was always fun and the cast of actors and dancers were very gracious. When the ship was at sea, the event that really became popular was Trivia! We were always invited to participate. And at 4 p.m. was tea time. That was quite enjoyable too. After spending 15 days on the Viking Sky, we have been asked several times whether or not would we got again. The answer is YES!! We thoroughly enjoyed ourselves, and getting the travel fever of wanting to see more of the world is quite addicting. We definitely recommend getting off the couch, stepping outside of one's environment into another to experience something different. Happy sailing!! Read Less
Sail Date: November 2017
We had several friends who had sailed with Viking and raved about it. Had sailed with Princess and liked it but wanted to try Viking. Can't say enough great things about it. Cabin was much roomier than we had had before, food was ... Read More
We had several friends who had sailed with Viking and raved about it. Had sailed with Princess and liked it but wanted to try Viking. Can't say enough great things about it. Cabin was much roomier than we had had before, food was great, people we met were great, the crew was great. We really liked not being nickeled and dimed every time we turned around. We loved the guest lecturers and the fact that we could catch it on the TV in our cabin if we had missed the live one. We also liked the port call talks as they were informative and didn't try to steer us to certain shops. We also like the fact that an excursion was included with each port of call but we could select from several paid excursions as well. We did about half and half and liked all of them. The tour guides were mostly very good and some were excellent. I really liked Costa Rica and also the swimming with dolphins in Roatan Hondorus. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2017
We chose the Miami pre-cruise extension and were disappointed. I am accustomed to having Viking provide sightseeing each day. There was nothing scheduled for our arrival day, so we arranged our own tour. Our room was not ready, so we ... Read More
We chose the Miami pre-cruise extension and were disappointed. I am accustomed to having Viking provide sightseeing each day. There was nothing scheduled for our arrival day, so we arranged our own tour. Our room was not ready, so we were told to return after 4. We returned after our tour, around 6, and our room and similar ones had been given away!! We spend an interminable time at reception trying to find a place to bed down for the night. The hotel eventually upgraded us and gave us a $50 chit for dinner, but that didn't quite make up for the hassle we had endured. The wine and cheese party the next night (a disappointment after the usual Viking river welcome dinners) was held in room off the lobby that was open to the sky. It was a virtual wind tunnel. We were the first to take our inferior snacks and glass of wine out to the lobby, and were soon joined by most of the group. What a poor choice of a room...and of the nibbles. The Hilton Cabana Hotel was not the best. Only one elevator worked, so it was a disaster on the day of our departure for the ship as people tried to bring themselves or their luggage down to the lobby. Our luggage was never picked up, so Bob had to bring it down himself. The embarcation process was the smoothest I have ever experienced. (The same was true of disembarkation) Everyone was ready for us, passports were scanned, ship key cards issued and we were ushered onto the ship and greeted with a glass of bubbly...always a nice treat. We chose this to visit Key West, the Panama Canal and Cartagena, all of which we enjoyed, plus we wanted to experience a Viking Ocean ship since we've been on several Viking river cruises. The ports, other than the ones mentioned above, were not very interesting and the tours were dip. I was disappointed and I was also disappointed in the number of sea days, tho I knew how many there would be when I signed up. I never dreamed that I would finish three books of over four hundred pages while on a sightseeing cruise. The meals in the main dining room were the expected high caliber of Viking. The selections were so wonderful that we always had trouble deciding on what to have. We always selected different courses so we could sample each others choices. The idea behind the Captain's Table was clever- small bites of special sumptuous food- but we found the main dining room preferable to the Italian restaurant. The buffet lunch was always tasty, so was breakfast there, tho my husband preferred to have breakfast in the main dining room...so we alternated. I did have a problem with the tossed salad at lunch on the buffet. On your riverboats it is so easy to fix up a big plate of salad by yourself. On the Sky, the toppings/additions were out of reach so we had to stand in line and wait for the chef to serve us...time wasted and no one likes to stand in line for food. We are smokers and appreciated the fact that our area was covered and so protected from sun and rain, however the tall cigatette disposal towers were never emptied. There wasn't much to the gift shop, but it was certainly better than on your river boats. I have already complained about the rotating globe that we purchased in the shop and you can check your records for that. I think the shops on the Regent ships are more interesting...especially when there are so many sea days. Naturally, despite what I have written, we will try another Viking Ocean cruise...I am thinking of Bergan to Greenwich. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2017
This ship is easy to navigate and has wonderful public areas. The pools are very difficult to exit. The thermal pool in the spa had temperature issues, one day cold another scalding hot. The food was excellent with the best steaks. The ... Read More
This ship is easy to navigate and has wonderful public areas. The pools are very difficult to exit. The thermal pool in the spa had temperature issues, one day cold another scalding hot. The food was excellent with the best steaks. The staff was unfailingly efficient and pleasant. The shore excursions were a bit of a nightmare. This was Sky's first Panama Canal Cruise. Arriving in Belize after 2 PM with an 1 1/2 hour bus ride left little to no time to visit Mayan ruins. Some buses arrived when it was already nearly dark.. Other shore excursions had buses with weak to no air conditioning. One paid for excursion in Columbia highlighted a Gold Museum which was closed when we arrived. Our provided flight home was awful with a 5:30 PM departure time. Customer service agent with Viking had told us we would be able to exit our cabin at 8:30 AM and stay in the common areas till afternoon departure. (Lie or lack of knowledge on ships procedures?) Being a smaller ship you will feel the vibration even in calm seas. Entertainment was low keyed. Super comfy theater. Best of all no one is constantly bothering you to buy expensive fruity drinks. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2017
Wanted to see some of the countries and to experience the smaller cruise ship. The paperwork arrived on time. I wanted to use a different airline but was told we had to use United for the inclusive air. When we did get the paperwork, we ... Read More
Wanted to see some of the countries and to experience the smaller cruise ship. The paperwork arrived on time. I wanted to use a different airline but was told we had to use United for the inclusive air. When we did get the paperwork, we found we were flying red-eye. That turned out to be very bad experience for us. We had no eats, very little beverage from deparure early Saturday evening til we were on board in mid afternnon on Sunday. The wheelchair attendant at Miami got us the to the luggage area where Vliking prrsonnel was waiting. At the port we found there was a bit of walking which makes it interesting for handidap people. After checking in and boarding the ship we found our cabin was not ready—meant we had to wait for an additional 2 hours from scheduled time. Second day my husband (diabetic, stroke and heart conditions) was in tne ship hospital from dehydration. As for the ship—the food was excellent whether the buffet on deck 7,the tea in the afternoon, the dining rooms on the deck 1 and 2. We were not impressed with the Chefs Table but the Italian speciality was excellent.The room service was appreciated. I found that there were a number of covered plates and room for such in the room was limited. Just a warning for those enjoying breakfast in the cabin. As for the cabin, heated bathroom floors!, excellent steward. Cleanliness throughout the ship. For the tours—we limited our trips. I liked the idea of some tours are included and we participated in 2 of them. Probably one of the highlight of the cruise was going through the Panama Canal locks in a smaller ship and then turning around in the lake. Even with a smaller ship, we didn't explore all the activities and area of the ship. We would eventually head to the front of the ship, watching the waves, enjoying beverages and Scandinavian food, reading and napping. We did not appreciate the transfer from the ship to the airport. The bus left us at the Delta section. We needed United. We had suitcases to move. We found a cart, placed our suitcases on it. My husband was handicapped. I had requested wheelchair for him with United. So we walked to the far end of the terminal to locate United. There were very few people to ask directions. And those said to keep walking. Eventually we found the correct airline. It is too bad for the cruise to end up with such a bad experience. We should have booked our own transfer. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2017
We chose this cruise, not realizing Viking Sky hadn’t been there before. The excursions need to be improved upon since we got to the Belize ruins shortly before it was getting dark and was muddy from all the rain. The other cruise ... Read More
We chose this cruise, not realizing Viking Sky hadn’t been there before. The excursions need to be improved upon since we got to the Belize ruins shortly before it was getting dark and was muddy from all the rain. The other cruise lines have priority on excursions so get the earlier buses for transporting passengers to the ruins. The Roatan Garden was a waste of time. Rather than walking through the garden, the guide was more interested hurrying us through the few trees she showed the people in front rather than the entire group so she could slice some fruit and then wanted tips. She grabbed her tip jar and then said, “Oh your bus is here.” What?! We were supposed to have 45 min to walk around on our own. Very poor service, Costa Rico was good, but the canal tour was only one way in and one way out rather than experiencing the “various canals” as we thought we were supposed to see. So Viking needs to rethink their excursions or better yet, dock on days when no other cruise lines will be in port or else change ports if another cruise line will be there. We enjoyed the Panama Canal tour, the Cartagena tour, the Montego Bay tour and the Grand Cayman tour, but there was no time for shopping. Viking was the last ship to dock and the first ship to leave. The food was good and the service was excellent upstairs in the World Cafe. The service was great in the main dining room on two nights and just okay on the third night. We decided to eat the rest of the time in the World Cafe rather than standing in line for The Restaurant. It would have been nice to have the creme brûlée in the WorldCafe once in awhile. There was always a long line for the gelato. They should have had gelato on both sides or else available all day. The entertainment was great and a very pleasant surprise. We didn’t miss not having a casino. We enjoyed hearing about the ports before our arrival and glad these were available on our cabin tv. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2017
My wife and I wanted to try Viking's new ocean ships due to good reviews and good experiences on Viking's river cruises. Pre cruise stay in Miami was the worst hotel experience we've ever had. Way below prior Viking ... Read More
My wife and I wanted to try Viking's new ocean ships due to good reviews and good experiences on Viking's river cruises. Pre cruise stay in Miami was the worst hotel experience we've ever had. Way below prior Viking standards. On site reps had just been hired, never worked for Viking before, and clearly were left with inadequate support to remedy problems. Our room was smaller than our suite on the ship. Elevators didn't work. Food mediocre at best. As to Embarkation, busses we're hours late and guests we're left crammed in an area of the lobby with their luggage. Embarkation greeters at the dock asked us to listen to an "important" announcement, which turned out to be "give us gratuities." We finally got into our suite hours after we were supposed to. The ships indeed are beautiful but Viking needs to enforce its dress and conduct codes, including for dinner. Our cruise had hundreds of people who dressed terribly and acted pushy all the time. Picture people who went on hot sweaty excursions during the day and showed up for dinner in the same clothes, including jeans and shorts that violated the dinner dress code. Viking did nothing about this and it therefore diminished the enjoyment on board for those guests who respected tbe dress code, dressed nicely, and didn't push their way through lines for dinner, excursions, entertainment, etc. Thank God for our wonderful Penthouse Junior suite where we could peacefully enjoy the cruise. Another haven was the Explorer Lounge, a great place to relax during the day and a quiet place to have a cocktail at night. As to Excursions, some were very good and some were poorly planned and executed, badly timed, and frequently required more difficult walking than described. Also, some of the Central America stops had third world busses that barely worked. Panama Canal partial transit was great, and the original train to Panama City was too. Overall, Viking needs to decide if it wants to be a high end ocean cruise line or an economical line for the masses. We frankly are puzzled by the latest rankings that place Viking above Crystal. No way, at least not right now. They have the ships and the potential, but there is a lot of room before they achieve 'six star" status. We'll do more Viking river cruises but we're not sure about ocean cruises. Given similar itineraries, we probably would choose Crystal or Regent. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2017
We loved the ambiance of this new 2017 ship, which included the many locations for quiet reading or conversation, the classical music, the entertainment options, the excellent service, the small size of the ship (about 950 passengers), the ... Read More
We loved the ambiance of this new 2017 ship, which included the many locations for quiet reading or conversation, the classical music, the entertainment options, the excellent service, the small size of the ship (about 950 passengers), the absence of a casino and children, the many educational lectures, the excellent food and restaurant options, the self-service laundromat on each deck, the afternoon tea in the relaxing Wintergarden, the free hot pool and snow room in the spa, and the free unlimited wi-fi. The main restaurant was divided into smaller "rooms," so it was quieter than a large open space. The food choices were delightful. When we wanted a quick meal, we used the World Cafe. We didn't try the room service. Viking offered a free excursion at every port, but we often chose a different excursion that cost money. We were very happy with the included tour to the Altun Ha Mayan ruins in Belize, the paid Gumbalimba Park on Roatan Island off Honduras, the included canal cruise near Tortuguero in Costa Rica, the paid rainforest and aerial tram tour in Panama, the paid gentle river rafting on a bamboo raft in Jamaica, and the paid tour to pet the stingrays in waist-deep water in the Caymans. The paid tour of Cartegena wasn't exactly as described because of the guide. We liked going through the Panama Canal locks and floating on Gatun Lake. Embarkation was bad because hundreds of us were warehoused in a giant room for several hours after overnight flights with no coffee, water, or snacks while we waited for Viking staff to open their check-in lines. Then there were hundreds in long lines. Read Less
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