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32 Viking Ocean Rome (Civitavecchia) Cruise Reviews

I have been reluctant to take a cruise as a solo since being widowed 5 years ago. Been told there are too many happy couples and it would make me sad. Well, I have done some traveling now, but the advice still stands for me. Most on ... Read More
I have been reluctant to take a cruise as a solo since being widowed 5 years ago. Been told there are too many happy couples and it would make me sad. Well, I have done some traveling now, but the advice still stands for me. Most on this voyage...Secrets of the Southern Mediterranean were couples. I found the few solos or friends traveling together not very engaging. I have previously traveled with groups 15 to 30 people and it was kind of natural to get to know one another...couples or not. I did not find it so on this venue....very few fellow travelers struck up conversation and I was certainly never invited to dine with anyone. I was tempted to take this cruise by the itinerary....Malta, Tunisia, Algeria, Sardinia and Spain. Not your typical cruise territory especially in February. Weather was cool, but dry which was fine for my tastes. However, the shore excursions were disappointing in Tunisia and Algeria. I was looking to really get out of the tourist made and see what life was life in these countries. Well, they are not ready for tourism and I felt Viking did not communicate that. In both countries, we were put on multiple busses...4 and 5 relatively, then driven around with police escorts and hardly allowed off the bus. In Tunisia, where the runs at Carthage were a big draw for me, we were only allowed a short bathroom break at the edge of some aqueducts.....hardly an enlightening experience. Algeria was much the same....many places, I longed to hop off and so a bit of exploring for half an hour or so. Malta, Sardinia and Spain are lovely destinations and the shore excursions were top notch. I only wish that I had not expected the same in Tunis and Algiers. Viking ships, crew and amenities are top notch......just not a good fit for solo travelers. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
We had bad experience even before we started the trip. We purchased the 3 days pre cruise extension of Tuscany. No documentation whatsoever for this pre cruise extension came with our cruise documents. No instructions for pick up at the ... Read More
We had bad experience even before we started the trip. We purchased the 3 days pre cruise extension of Tuscany. No documentation whatsoever for this pre cruise extension came with our cruise documents. No instructions for pick up at the Florence airport nor contact info for Viking contact at airport. Even though my travel agent assured us that there will be someone to pick us up at the Florence airport (as told to her by the Viking rep when she gave Viking our flight info). I felt uneasy so I placed a call myself to Viking a week before the trip & was told they do not show an airport transfer for us & no one would be picking us up. They claimed my travel agent did not give them our flight info & it is too late now to contact their agent in Florence. I couldn't believe my ears: a week is not long enough for them to give this info to their agent in Florence? I called my travel agent immediately who placed a call to Viking. The agent she talked to assured her that Viking do show they have our flight info & everything should be fine. When we finally arrived in Florence, there was no Viking rep at the airport. An airport official whom Viking contracted for her service was there to pick up another couple & sure enough, she showed "no transfer" for us. I was really upset by then. She had to make some phone calls to the Viking tour leader who was stationed at the villa where we're staying. We were finally allowed to go with this couple to take the transfer to the villa. Can you imagine what would happen to us if there were no other people on our flight for the Tuscany tour? We would be stranded at the airport with no contact # to call! What a fiasco! This is really unacceptable since Viking rates themselves to be # 1!!!! When we finally get on the ship, I did not get my luggage, despite repeated calls to Guest Relations & Housekeeping Dept. I couldn't freshen up nor take my medication before our dinner reservation at the Chef Table at 6:30 pm. I finally got a call at 6:30 pm & had to get my luggage at Security. Needless to say, I was late for my dinner. My first impression with Viking Cruise/pre Cruise extension was really bad! We had a deluxe veranda room which is small with a tiny balcony. Storage space is only enough for 1 person, not 2. Our room is midship but for some reason, the first few days, it was noisy with vibrations during the day. The included wine is mediocre, you have to pay for better wine! Viking Ocean could not be categorized as a "luxury cruise" as they claimed. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
This was my 8 or so times cruising, with past 2 cruises on Oceania (Riveria) and latest, Regent (Mariner). This latest cruise was chosen with the following requirements: 1. Did not want to cruise on a cruise brand lower than premium ... Read More
This was my 8 or so times cruising, with past 2 cruises on Oceania (Riveria) and latest, Regent (Mariner). This latest cruise was chosen with the following requirements: 1. Did not want to cruise on a cruise brand lower than premium status. 2. Did not want to go on a boat with guest of more than 1200 or so guest. 3. Had to be a Mediterranean Cruise and Port of Call was important as I have been on 4 Mediterranean Cruises and did not want to go to the same ports. 4. Dining an important area as both Oceania and Regent did a great job and we like to eat well. 5. Had to be in January as wife wanted to go on babymoon. Viking "Secret of the Mediterranean " fit this perfectly....especially with the deal I received (1799 USD per person for a Deluxe Veranda). I purchased this quickly especially after reading the great feedback (92%) compared to 60% something of Regent. This included "free " shore excursion and free beer/wine for lunch and dinner. There is a Silver Package Drink upgrade for 139 USD and included drinks up to 15 USD (except champagne) which I purchased. Embarkation at Rome was ok, but be aware that you should hail a cab with a permit to enter the port or else you will have to wait at the Port Transfer Station, which buses passengers to the cruise ship....we waited 30 minutes at the station before being transported to our boat and it was freezing weather. We got on the boat within minutes of checking in. The ship itself was one of the beautifully designed boat (interior and exterior) i have cruised on. Scandinavian interior was just a treat to be in. The ship was literally brand new. Stateroom was about the size of Veranda Room on the Oceania Riveria. The design of the room....to be honest....very IKEA, functional and minimal. Heated bathroom floors was a nice touch. Restaurant Service was -B. The effort of the restaurant staff (especially Indonesian and Filipinos) was great but the overall service of the restaurant staff was not as polished as the other cruises I have been. Wrong orders here and there...forgotten orders and so on. House Keeping was spot on and were great Room Service was relatively fast was average food Bartender in Torshavn was Top Notch Gym was surprising big Thermal Spa with Sauna and Cold Dip was great (free) The remaining Service Team (mostly Europeans) such as Guest Services/Excursion and Front Desk were effective but not as friendly as the other staff. Everything else was below standard. Food - Too salty, no imagination, no variety (often repeated) and wrongly cooked....just not very good. Food in Regent and Oceania were far far more superior in terms of taste, variety and ingredients. Port........Malta, Tunisia, Calgari, Algiers, Valencia. These were truly exotic and for me, the deal breaker to go on this cruise. We missed Valencia entirely due to bad weather. We stayed in Tunisia and Calgari for only 4 to 5 hours...way too short. Algiers was just a waste of time as we had to stay with the Cruise excursions only. Excursions - we did the free included excursions and i personally thought they were all crap and way to short....average of 3 hours long....Algiers was 2 hours. We decided to take a taxi while we were in Tunisia and that was worthwhile and around 40 Euros. If Viking thinks "included" excursions will be a unique selling point....they should consult Regent. Entertainment was so so. No big production, just mainly LED screens. The band in Torshavn was good. Though at first i was ok with no casino....in retrospect, a casino would have made life on board a little more bearable. Overall, it was a good cruise and given the price I paid....not a terrible result. But i am still confused about the outrageously high reviews on Cruise Critic and though Oceania and Regent were a bit more expensive, my next cruise would not be with Viking. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
We chose this cruise to see some parts of the world we never visited. We were particularly looking for ward to visiting Tunisia and Algeria. What we were not told is that we could not leave the ship unaccompanied in either port. On ... Read More
We chose this cruise to see some parts of the world we never visited. We were particularly looking for ward to visiting Tunisia and Algeria. What we were not told is that we could not leave the ship unaccompanied in either port. On tour, we were heavily guarded by police with rifles. A bit unsettling to say the least. The tour buses in these are not close to Western standards. In fact, our bus broke down in Tunisia, which cut our touring time considerably. Viking did provide a partial refund, but hey, we traveled this far to see the sights!! Algeria is essentially a military state and we witnessed an encounter between our tour guide and a self important military lackey at a visitor site. It was embarrassing for our guide and telling to us as visitors. The food on this ship was very good. We were able to book a couple of nights in Manfredi's and one at the Chef Table. Skip the Chef Table. My wife has a food allergy to shellfish. Despite making this known to the restaurant manager, three of the four courses served at the Chef's Table had shellfish!! It would have been easy to inform us of this issue ahead of time. Didn't happen. The chef even tried to convince her that oyster sauce has no real oyster in it. We were not taking the chance. We had ship board credit which we used for the Tunis trip. As earlier mentioned, we we refunded a part of the Tunis trip, but there was no time to use the credit as we were unable to get into port in Valencia due to 50 MPH winds and 20 foot seas. Viking refused to reimburse this credit. Our stateroom was low and central in the ship. This was a good choice because the seas were rough and many folks were getting seasick. Our steward was OK, but not great. One day we came in and found another passengers key card in our slot. We got a convoluted explanation as to how this happened. The on board entertainment was not bad. The performers were energetic and gave it their best. The internet was surprisingly good. The biggest complaint was the confusion on our final day. We were to disembark at about 9AM. However, due to the aforementioned high seas, we could not dock on time. We were told the best case was we would be docking later that night and spending another night on board. You can imagine the chaos that ensued with people worried about flights home and post cruise plans in Barcelona. We canceled our hotel in Barcelona. Low and behold, about 5PM we are docking in Barcelona, unannounced!! We were able to get our reservation reinstated and we got off the ship and jumped in a taxi. We missed a tour we had set up for earlier that day. After spending two nights in Barcelona, we headed to the airport for our flight home. We ran into a couple we had dined with. They were originally scheduled to leave on Sunday, but Viking was unable to get them on a flight until Tuesday. What a shame. Their vacation was ruined, our troubles paled in comparison. If you are going to this part of the world,do not assume the Med is not rough!! And don't have high expectations for Tunis and Algiers. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
We decided to take the Mediterranean cruise because we wanted to see the ports of call (they ended up cancelling the Tunis stop which was very disappointing) especially Barcelona. We went there first for 5 days prior to the cruise...then ... Read More
We decided to take the Mediterranean cruise because we wanted to see the ports of call (they ended up cancelling the Tunis stop which was very disappointing) especially Barcelona. We went there first for 5 days prior to the cruise...then flew over to Rome to catch the ship on our own. The embarkation area was very confusing and no one seemed to be able to help us when we first got to a Viking station. The meals in the main dining room (The Restaurant) were so bad, we only ate there 2 times and both times left feeling great disappointment with the preparation of the food and the service from the wait staff. We did enjoy the 2 specially restaurants but ended up eating all the rest of our meals at the World Grill. The included excursions were short (we rode on the buses almost as long as we were on the actual tour) and poorly planned. We felt that after paying so much for the cruise, we would just take the included tours...bad choice. The guides were limited in their knowledge of the ports and we had very little time to shop or explore on our own. We have been on Viking River Cruises and loved them (have 2 more planned in the next year) but we will probably not go on another Ocean Cruise...trust me there is a big difference. The common areas never seemed crowded and the ship was beautifully appointed but the whole experience lacked the kind and friendly service we have had on the river cruises. We hope Viking is not getting too big too fast and leaving behind their personal service and attention to detail that we felt on our prior river cruises. Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
Th Viking Star was just that. Food throughout the ship was wonderful. Staff went far and beyond to make fora memorable experience, Bosko ,Rina, Ivona were the best. My only disappointment was the ports of Naples, Sicily and Sardina. The ... Read More
Th Viking Star was just that. Food throughout the ship was wonderful. Staff went far and beyond to make fora memorable experience, Bosko ,Rina, Ivona were the best. My only disappointment was the ports of Naples, Sicily and Sardina. The complimentary tours were took long with guides talking non stop. Not enough time to explore on your own. Naples was dirty and did not give you a safe feeling. I am sure the paid tours were a whole lot better. Definitely not enough facility breaks and one bus did not even have a rest room that could be used for even an emergency. Mallorca was the best having time to shop and enjoy the true flavor of the town....not enough time In Valencia. Bringing us to that wonderful market. with only 15 minutes on our own was ridiculous....by the time you used the facilities it was time to rush off to meet the group. A few of the guides were difficult to understand and offered way too much information at times, sometimes too repitituous. I would definitely travel with Viking again and again and recommend to my friends but I would not recommend this itinerary. I have to say it was very disappointing. I have been to many different parts of Italy many, many times and this is the first time I was so disappointed. Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
There was a special price for the cruise because we had sailed with Viking before. We would not do another ocean cruise preferring the river cruises....more scenery along the way and a more intimate atmosphere in general. The food was ... Read More
There was a special price for the cruise because we had sailed with Viking before. We would not do another ocean cruise preferring the river cruises....more scenery along the way and a more intimate atmosphere in general. The food was great but the service was poor. Unlike the river cruises, we had to search for a server and almost beg for a glass of wine. The Asian workers were great. The majority of the Eastern European workers were unfriendly and slow to serve. This was in stark contrast to the Danube cruise where the Eastern European wait staff was phenomenal. (We gave Milos and extra tip.)The pre-cruise extension in Rome and the post-cruise extension in Barcelona were horribly overpriced. The shore excursions were very good and the tour guides (especially Marco at Selenunte and Carmine at Pompeii) were outstanding. Afternoon tea in the winter garden was a nice addition. That staff was very accommodating. The food at the Chef's Table restaurant was disappointing....none of our table liked anything. Manfredi's food was excellent. Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
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