15 Viking Ocean Viking Orion Cruise Reviews for Senior Cruises to Asia

We decided to do another Viking Cruise to celebrate my husband's retirement. He chose a cruise from Hong Kong to Tokyo with a 2 day extension in Hong Kong before our cruise began. Viking offered 2 Hong Kong included tours, one from ... Read More
We decided to do another Viking Cruise to celebrate my husband's retirement. He chose a cruise from Hong Kong to Tokyo with a 2 day extension in Hong Kong before our cruise began. Viking offered 2 Hong Kong included tours, one from the hotel and one from the ship. Both were very informative. We were also given information and opportunities to explore on our own, where to eat, the evening laser show, how to get around and what to be careful of. The Orion is a beautiful ship--all the Viking Ocean ships are the same so we knew our way around from our first ocean cruise. The food was excellent an a few nights were specialty dining. We mostly ate in the Restaurant or World Café, both have options for diet issues. As far as the entertainment went, there was more to do than we had time. There was a huge variety of excellent entertainment from lectures and port information, movies, shows, dancing, teas, spa and pools, music venues and miscellaneous activities. If we missed something we could watch it in our cabin later. Viking took care of every detail, we even had popcorn for the movies. Our cabin was small with a regular balcony. We like portside to enjoy arrival and departure. One night a brass band played as we left and another night there were fireworks for our departure. People gathered to wave us in and out. That was really special! The service on the ship was superior. We did all included shore excursions and we added a sightseeing excursion in Tokyo. Guides and tours were excellent, only 2 were a little disappointing, Osaka we wanted to see more and another place, it seemed the guide was a last minute substitute (I think it was Beppu). Viking is an adult only cruise. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
This was our first Viking Ocean cruise — we’d done Viking River Cruises and they were always terrific. This cruise interested us because it called on ports in Japan and China as well as Hong Kong. We were completely satisfied with ... Read More
This was our first Viking Ocean cruise — we’d done Viking River Cruises and they were always terrific. This cruise interested us because it called on ports in Japan and China as well as Hong Kong. We were completely satisfied with the cruise, including the room, dining and shipboard experience. We were a little disappointed with the shore excursions, not because they were bad, they just weren’t as good as they were on their European river cruises. We were told it was because Viking controls the tours on European river cruises but contracts them out on ocean cruises. Getting on and off the ship was easy because there were less than 800 passengers aboard, even with the Chinese immigration officials making it difficult. Passing through immigration in Japan was a piece of cake. The ship had scheduled entertainment nightly in the theater and other areas of the ship as well as dancing in the lounge. Viking’ ships are a great size, not too big and impersonal, but big enough to have the amenities and entertainment to make it fun. Hong Kong and Shanghai were wonderful places to spend time and snorkeling on Ishigaki Island was memorable. We could have given up The smaller ports for more time in the larger. Dining was first rate at the Restaurant, the Chef’s Table and Manfrettis’ and very good at the World Cafe. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
First time on a Viking ocean cruise. Great ship. Great staff. Great food. So organized! The daily tours took us places we probably wouldn’t have ventured to on our own. The tour guides were very knowledgeable. The food was excellent ... Read More
First time on a Viking ocean cruise. Great ship. Great staff. Great food. So organized! The daily tours took us places we probably wouldn’t have ventured to on our own. The tour guides were very knowledgeable. The food was excellent with several restaurants to choose from. The only thing I would not do again, would be the Chef’s Table. I would turn that into a steakhouse, and make Manfredes (sp) more Italian. We always had excellent service in all the restaurants. No request was ever denied. Plenty of beer and wine was offered. Afternoon tea was lovely! Our cabin was lovely with plenty of space for clothing. Actually, more than enough. Loved the makeup mirror. Loved the mini bar. Very comfortable and spacious room. The entertainment was excellent. We got to know the entertainers. Nice variety. Onboard lectures were varied and enjoyable. Planetarium is a nice touch. Tours were so well organized. Pre and post cruise tours and accommodations were EXCELLENT! Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
Cruise provided 1) enjoyable and educational excursions. 2) a lot of history. 3) a good understanding of modern China. 4) a great sense of hstory of Okinawa. All accommodations,food, spa and exercise equipment were impeccable. We ... Read More
Cruise provided 1) enjoyable and educational excursions. 2) a lot of history. 3) a good understanding of modern China. 4) a great sense of hstory of Okinawa. All accommodations,food, spa and exercise equipment were impeccable. We enjoyed numerous on board lectures: history, shipping, and NASA/space travel. We did a river cruise on Viking Rurik, Waterway of the Czars (Oct 2018). W e really enjoyed that trip. We were very pleased with the Viking experience. We wanted to try an ocean cruise in Asia. Our experience on Viking Orion was as satisfying as the trip on Viking Rurik. We anticipate we will take another Viking cruise in the 24 months. The variety of excursions was wonderful. We did as many as we could. We visited temples, mosques, markets, local restaurants for lunch and dinner, acrobat show, tallest buildings, and night light shows. We traveled on mag-lev train (252mph), funicular rail (30 degree incline) and sampan (30’ ). Talking with tour guides and Viking staff really made the trip a warm and welcoming experience. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We choose this cruise because we had not been to China before. We were keen to do another Ocean Cruise after doing a Viking River Cruise the year before. The embarkation process was very smooth and we were on the ship in no time. These ... Read More
We choose this cruise because we had not been to China before. We were keen to do another Ocean Cruise after doing a Viking River Cruise the year before. The embarkation process was very smooth and we were on the ship in no time. These ships are really beautiful - very spacious and hard to believe there was about 800 people on board. There are so many places to go to it is easy to get lost in the first few days. We found the food on board to be of a very high standard. Sometimes when we read other reviews we find it hard to believe we were on the same ship! There were so many different places to eat and you could have any thing that you wanted, especially in the World Café. The BBQ meals on the pool deck were very good with different themes on sea days. Breakfasts always good and lots of variety for both lunch and dinner. We enjoyed both Manfredis and The Chef's Table - they were great places to eat. The crew were all amazing! It wasn't long before they knew our names and they were so efficient in their roles. We had a lot of fun with some of the bar staff especially Gary 1 and Gary 2 at the Atrium bar. Nothing was too much trouble for the crew. We went to a few of the entertainment evenings and we enjoyed them very much. Service everywhere was excellent. We enjoyed the ports we visited with some better than others. There was not a lot to see In Ishigaki but we enjoyed Okinawa and had a great guide to show us the site of the Battle of Okinawa. Shanghai was amazing - we had such a good time there. We enjoyed Qingdao although it was very busy as it was the 70th Celebrations in China. Dalian was a lovely place and we had a great tour there. The standard of tourist guides in some ports was not very good. We had one day when we walked for a very long way before the guide realised we were walking tin the wrong direction. Overall, this was a lovely cruise but we did have some issues with the time it took to get off the ship due to the Chinese immigration requirements, not Viking's fault though. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
What a wonderful experience!! This was our second Viking cruise on their luxurious 930 passenger max vessel. We are so proud to have been passengers aboard the Orion. The Viking Ocean cruise Team was outstanding in planning, ... Read More
What a wonderful experience!! This was our second Viking cruise on their luxurious 930 passenger max vessel. We are so proud to have been passengers aboard the Orion. The Viking Ocean cruise Team was outstanding in planning, execution, frequent pre-trip communication, airport transfer process, and the luxurious on board experience. Our cabin was a deluxe veranda style and very comfortable. Having been guests for cocktails in a friends cabin suite, we have recently booked our next cruise for a penthouse junior suite. The excursion selections were numerous and covered a nice variety of time and exertion. Our area helicopter tour at Valdez was excellent. The on board Viking Resident Historian lecture program was absolutely a “cannot miss” daily experience. Great subjects, content and presentations by Mr. William Simpson, resident historian and Howard Parkin, astronomer. The post lecture round tables were perfect for our more detail questions. The on-board planetarium was like being on a space flight to the cosmos. We even met for a midnight viewing experience of the International Space Station fly over and searched for Northern Lights viewing. Wow! Fitness center was excellent and equipment inventory was never a wait situation. Massage facilities and personnel were excellent. We enjoyed the wave pool facility. 4 PM tea was never missed. Our dining experiences in all restaurants was 5 star. Staff, selection, ambiance, and prompt service was outstanding. Manfredi’s (thanks to Ian and his staff), Chef’s Table, Restaurant were a great variety of cuisine. Evening entertainment was Hollywood quality and a great time. Overall the cleanliness and strict attention to sanitation was very important and they ship personnel did a discreet and outstanding performance. Thank you to Cesar, our Viking Tour advisor from beginning to end. The overall cruising experience provided by Viking Ocean Cruises was absolutely outstanding. Move this intinery up on your bucket list. You will never forget it. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Chose this cruise because we wanted to visit Japan, Eastern Russia and the Behring Sea. The ship was second to none, and I've sailed on many ocean cruises: 4 times on Princess (reasonably good for the money, but certainly not ... Read More
Chose this cruise because we wanted to visit Japan, Eastern Russia and the Behring Sea. The ship was second to none, and I've sailed on many ocean cruises: 4 times on Princess (reasonably good for the money, but certainly not great), 1 time on Celebrity (very good cruise line!), 1 time on Orient (now out of business - and with good reason), and 3 times on Oceania (also a very good cruise line -- but with several negatives which makes me wonder if I'll ever sail with Oceania again). But the best, by far, was Viking's Ocean ship - the Orion. Here's why: OLDER TRAVELERS. I'm a senior citizen (age 67 at the time) and this ship was great for older folks -- which is not to say that it's not also great for folks from about 35 years and older. But no children are permitted, so there was no crying children to cope with. My wife and I interacted with many others on this cruise and everyone was pleasant or nicer. I can't, of course, control who can sail on this cruise line, and one small group bothered me. I overheard them in the buffet restaurant complaining about a long delay to sail away from an Alaskan port -- and they were correct; it was a long delay. But they unanimously and loudly decided it was those "lazy union workers" at the port who were responsible even though there was no way for them to know. I've never been a union worker but to accuse anyone of something without evidence is just ignorant. I guess it takes all types to make a passenger list. SHIP. The ship is very well laid out. I love libraries on ships and on Viking there were little libraries all over the ship -- all with comfortable chairs and loungers, and friendly, attentive, unobtrusive drink service. Besides great libraries the décor was expensive but very tasteful. So many interesting pieces of art all over the ship, and great photos too. The interior of the ship was done in very warm, cozy colors. The gym was fantastic with just about any kind of machine you can want -- European style. I loved the fact that there was NEVER a line at the elevators! The stairs are right there, but if you want the ride, the elevators are fast and readily available -- even at meal time. FOOD. This is always of interest to travelers. I found that the food in the main dining room ranged from superb to rotten. Of course if you don't like your menu choice you can always get something else from that menu -- so you always have something at least "pretty good" to eat if not superb. The specialty restaurants were superb every time we went, and they don't cost extra to get in. But you do need reservations and at least BEORE the cruise you are limited in the number of reservations you can make in those specialty restaurants. After you're on the trip you can get extra reservations if available at the time you want. Another thing I liked about Viking Ocean cruises is the fact that in the restaurants (but not the buffet) if you're an anti-social sort (like me) you can always get a table for just you and your traveling companion. You can always opt to dine as part of a larger group, and if you want to dine with specific friends, that's always possible (if your friends like you enough). One other thing about the main dining room: it is NOT one large room; it is divided into five (or was it seven?) separate seating areas, so you never felt like you are eating in an airplane hangar or, ugh, a barn. The main dining rooms always felt cozy and service was great. CABIN: This was our first cruise with Viking, so I can't say much about the other cabins on the ship, but ours was enormous. Wasn't quite big enough for a full basketball game with referees and such, but very spacious and well-appointed. Of course the cabin steward and helper were so very pleasant, respectful (he wouldn't call me by my first name even though I insisted) and efficient. However, since my wife and I were in a large suite it was strange (after cruising on Oceania) that there was no "butler" service. I'm not a butler-type guy; I'm sweet and gentle and never demanding. But butler service on Oceania was so wonderful, and I missed it on Viking -- especially in our pricey cabin suite. But the cabin steward and his helper were great, and when we had laundry to do -- it always came back within 24 hours even though the schedule said it would take 48 hours. Go figure. POOL. I never went in the pool, but I loved the fact that the pool had a retractable roof so that when it was closed it was comfortable for swimming even in cold climates. As always on this ship, a library was right nearby and I did sit at poolside very content to read in peace and quiet. (Yes, fellow travelers did use the pool in every climate we visited.) ENTERTAINMENT. I can't say enough about the entertainment! I tend to choose lectures and science-oriented movies and there were 3 (count 'em, THREE) auditoriums (auditoria?). One very large one and there were always seats available for whatever was going on there, and two smaller ones for movies and lectures. Again, never a problem getting seats in these smaller places. The two smaller ones were closed off from the very large auditorium by a moveable wall - so during very popular entertainment presentations the seats in the small auditoriums became part of the already-large largest auditorium. FUTURE CRUISES. There is a "future cruises" office available (on a rather limited time schedule, unfortunately), and the discounts for those wanting to book future Viking cruises (both Ocean and River, I think) while on a current cruise are great! My wife and I were so impressed with Viking Ocean cruises that we booked another cruise at this "future cruises" office. The fellow who worked there could have been a little better informed on certain matters, but he was knowledgeable enough. Maybe he was filling-in for somebody else. But, as I said, his schedule in that office was very limited and you really needed to make a reservation in advance. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We have cruised on numerous ocean cruises over the past ten years including Princess, Regent, Oceania, and National Geographic. Viking Ocean will now be our "go to" cruise line unless we are seeking an expedition cruise. ... Read More
We have cruised on numerous ocean cruises over the past ten years including Princess, Regent, Oceania, and National Geographic. Viking Ocean will now be our "go to" cruise line unless we are seeking an expedition cruise. Everyone's cruising style is different, but Viking is perfect for us. Our reasons include what they don't have, no children, no casino, no Vegas style shows, no butlers, and no formal nights, to what they do have - sleek, Scandinavian design with room for everyone, focus on educational lectures, focus on classical music, the most amazing spa and fitness center at sea, fabulous food with no charge speciality restaurants, and wine and beer with lunch and dinner. We had a penthouse veranda and it was wonderful. Maybe a bit more closet space would have been nice. The bathroom was our favorite ever with it's roomy shower and heated floor. I would chose the same cabin when we cruise with them again. As mentioned by others, Viking needs to work on their shore excursions. We were on a new itinerary so maybe that was part of the problem. They definitely need to invest in new listening devices. But overall, we have found our new favorite cruise line and can't wait to sail with Viking again. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
We are loyal Viking River cruisers (5 trips) and decided to give Viking Ocean a try. We have traveled on other ocean cruise lines. Generally, things went pretty well for us, though there were a few bumps during the first couple of days. ... Read More
We are loyal Viking River cruisers (5 trips) and decided to give Viking Ocean a try. We have traveled on other ocean cruise lines. Generally, things went pretty well for us, though there were a few bumps during the first couple of days. We love the Viking Orion. With only about 900 passengers, it is small and intimate but still has everything we wanted. If you are looking for casinos or large Vegas-style reviews - the Viking Orion is not for you. The good: wine and beer included with meals, free internet, free launderette, free excursion in each port, heated bathroom floors, comfortable beds, adequate sized cabins, alternate restaurants included, outstanding lecturers and speakers, friendly & efficient crew, good food selection and preparation, verandas on all cabins, the "Explorer Dome". Ample storage in cabins. Certain class cabins get free minibar and laundry. Awesome use of state of the art technology everywhere on board. Spa area. Many quiet comfortable spaces to read and relax. Infinity pool. Musicians and singers were all good. What we thought could be improved: Dining Room was crowded - seemed like there were too many tables for the space. Excursions - We usually take the "Easy or Leisurely" excursions due to some mobility issues - Choices were limited. Need magnifying makeup mirror in bathroom or elsewhere in cabin. Itinerary - Bali to Hong Kong - Sihanoukville, Cambodia is awful. Dirty, polluted - No reason for any passenger to go there. Singapore - Needed an overnight there - not just one day. Vietnam, Singapore, Kuala Lampur, Bangkok, Bali, Hong Kong were all very good . Indonesian ports other than Bali were just okay - not great. We'll cruise again with Viking Ocean, but will carefully select the itinerary based on Mobility-friendly excursions. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Could not get the flight I wanted, even though I took Air Plus. Flight home was delayed 2 hours, so United dumped all luggage at LAX stopover and cancelled all connecting flights. We had a scheduled 3 hour layover, so there was plenty of ... Read More
Could not get the flight I wanted, even though I took Air Plus. Flight home was delayed 2 hours, so United dumped all luggage at LAX stopover and cancelled all connecting flights. We had a scheduled 3 hour layover, so there was plenty of time to catch our original flight. But, instead we had to rebook and ended up with crummy seats in the back of the plane. Many excursions were filled up before I was allowed to sign up. Much waiting in line for everything; this ship could not accommodate this many people! Had to go to everything a half hour early to get a decent seat. Restaurant service was very slow - waited in hall half an hour to be seated - by ourselves (we wanted to meet other travelers and the best time to do this is at dinner), then another half hour to order, then another half hour for food to arrive, for a total of 2 hours to eat - ridiculous! On previous river cruises, we had open seating (seated ourselves) and had food in 10 minutes, except France (took about a half hour). Why do you wait until 7:00 p.m. to open the restaurant? If you opened earlier (5:00), people could be served more efficiently. Food was not all that good either. We were so frustrated with all the waiting, we resorted to the World Cafe to eat the remainder of our meals, where the food was even less tasty - resembled cafeteria food, and there wasn't much variation in the menu. When I go on a cruise, I want to be pampered and waited on; not serving myself - I can do that at home.The only thing I had that was good was the stir-fry (offered only once). Breakfast was always the same. The apple pie in the explorer lounge was very good, as were the burgers at the pool grill. I liked the room arrangement - plenty of storage space. Entertainment - not much variety. I'd prefer something different each night. Bring in more local talent. Not much to do on sea days. Lectures were boring; Aida movie put me to sleep. Slow computers; difficult to use - took me 2 hours to print air check-in for return flight so I missed sailing into Sydney Harbor - something I really wanted to see. More help needed in the future cruise area - could not get an appointment until the second last day - best rooms were already gone. Also more help needed at help desks for booking excursions - another line to wait in. Very pricey for what we got; I could have gone on this same cruise with another cruise line for half the cost. I did book another cruise on this ship, so I hope you'll forgive my negative comments; I offer them as areas that could use improvement. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
We wanted to visit New Zealand and Australia. Tasmania was a terrific surprise. We selected a mid-size cabin due to the length of the trip and that there would be days at sea. Everything was exceptionally well done from the housekeeping ... Read More
We wanted to visit New Zealand and Australia. Tasmania was a terrific surprise. We selected a mid-size cabin due to the length of the trip and that there would be days at sea. Everything was exceptionally well done from the housekeeping staff to the entertainment staff. The food was amazing and the surprise birthday cake was a special treat. We would go on this trip again if we didn't have such a long air flight at each end-we are traveling with the same company to a different location(Baltic) A special treat for us was the educational courses and being able to interact with the educators for further information. We were given information about the area, history, & astronomy so we understand what we would see and be part of the for the next day. The food was terrific in all locations and had no problems with reservations for the smaller restaurants. Often we ate in the main "cafeteria" location and were able to make many new friends at nearby tables. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
Our voyage on the Viking Orion from Bangkok to Bali was certainly one of the most memorable cruising we have the pleasure to partake. Viking has a way to pick the best crew, and this is no exception. As this is a new ship, our review ... Read More
Our voyage on the Viking Orion from Bangkok to Bali was certainly one of the most memorable cruising we have the pleasure to partake. Viking has a way to pick the best crew, and this is no exception. As this is a new ship, our review reflects the fact that every detail has not been worked out, and polished on this ship. Our cabin configuration was very well thought of, with plenty drawers. The under bed has enough clearance to easily stow our empty luggage. A little quirk; the shower stall is designed in such a way, that one is forced to exit the stall completely to get to your towel! An extra hook adhered to the side glass panel just outside the door would solve that problem. We prefer fantail room for its views, and we enjoy sitting on the balcony for that reason. That is the reason we booked cabin #4123. Disappointingly, because of a design flaw, which blocks water drainage, we constantly have inch-deep water pooling on the balcony; and the water is not only from rain. The infinity pool above us constantly splashes water to our balcony! Our cruise mates, in the cabin directly above us (deck 5), does not have this pooling problem. We were not able to enjoy the balcony as we have in past cruises. We recommend avoiding booking cabin #4123, and #4122, for this reason. We enjoy wine pairing with our food, and definitely it is worth purchasing the beverage package. Viking wine selection and premium liquors are extensive, and the package allows liquor enjoyments outside the dining room. We were able to sample some of the best wines on a cruise, in part because of the expert guidance from our knowledgeable sommelier, Kat! We were truly excited that there is an onboard planetarium and with an astronomer crew member. We feel that the planetarium and the astronomer are not utilized to their full potential. People have to book ahead for the 3D shows, as the facility has limited seating capacity. I love watching 3D movies. Unfortunately, only one of the shows (Space travel) requiring tickets, pertained to space, or astronomy. The best presentation was conducted by the astronomer, unfortunately also have limited times. My recommendation is to try to see the Space presentation and attend the astronomer's lecture, and skip the rest. Karaoke is not for everybody, but having no karaoke in an Asian tour seems a bit extreme. We asked the Cruise Director if a karaoke session is possible, and was told that the company CEO forbid that activity on board! The trip from Bangkok to the ship docked in Laem Chabang, because of traffic, took over 2hrs! Is there a nearer port from Bangkok, other than Laem Chabang? Wouldn't it be a unique experience to for passengers to be shuttled to the ship on a fast boat, like a hydrofoil? How boarding a hydrofoil from Klong Toey on the Chao Phraya River, and shuttle us to the ship in it, if Laem Chabang is the only cruise ship friendly port from Bangkok? There is nothing worth seeing in Laem Chabang, so all tours are centered in Bangkok. Realizing how long it is to reach Bangkok, we even skipped an included 9hr tour, because we know we will be wasting at least 5 of those hours, just for the commute! Our only disaster, was our pre-cruise tour of Bangkok. The guide failed to provide us with rain gear, and we were soaked to our skins in the downpour! Viking learned from that goof, and we were given rain ponchos at every shore tours after that. Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
What’s Qnot on the Orion. Evertthing from a luxurious stateroom, great food, entertainment and activities. The staff go out of their way to insure every meal, activity and tour are top notch. The ship itself has every acommodation from ... Read More
What’s Qnot on the Orion. Evertthing from a luxurious stateroom, great food, entertainment and activities. The staff go out of their way to insure every meal, activity and tour are top notch. The ship itself has every acommodation from entertainment, shopping, exercise facilities, swimming, spa treatments, great food and spirits as well as a staff that finds no need to great. Your cabin is well equipped with fresh linens and towels on a daily basis. There is so much entertainment you will never be bored including lectures, movies, high tea, availability to an onboard library, a swimming pool, spa treatments, exercise equipment and a sun deck as well as a walking track. The staff will provide 24 hour room service. There are several specialty restaurants as well as the Buffett. The Buffett serves everything from soup To nuts. They even have gelatos. You’ll fell very comfortable with any of the Viking cruises. You will never e bored or hungry on Viking no matter what trip you take. Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
This was our third Viking experience, previously a 15 day river and 15 day ocean. I guess I should start out by saying the the Viking ships are beautiful, well laid out it never feels congested. The cabin attendants are first class and ... Read More
This was our third Viking experience, previously a 15 day river and 15 day ocean. I guess I should start out by saying the the Viking ships are beautiful, well laid out it never feels congested. The cabin attendants are first class and the dining is excellent. Entertainment is limited but, we already new that. The singers and dancers on board did a very good job with what they were given. The cruises director and staff seemed to only work about half the time. Compared with our previous Viking cruise, the entertainment was almost non-existent. The guest services group ranged from very good to just another body filling up space. My wife and I flew into Hong Kong from LA two days early. it was a tough 15 HR flight and my wife experienced some issues. The Viking host at our hotel was very helpful but, it was evident that many staffers were not adequately trained to Viking standards. This would turn out to to be the overriding theme for the rest of our trip. Transportation to the Orion was uneventful and embarkation was smooth. Our luggage was delivered to our cabin within a half hour followed by the attendants. We enjoyed the ship for two days but upon arriving in Xiamen my wife was still not feeling well so we visited the medical center. Before I proceed, I just want to say that the doctor and med staff were caring, thorough and extremely professional. They had a doctor and two nurses with quite a lot of equipment. After much testing the doctor decided to send her to the hospital for further tests. We were advised to take it easy for the rest of the cruise. We cancelled our post cruise extension and were advised that we would need to file a claim with the trip insurance company(we are still working on that). Three days before disembarkation, we received the details for our four day extension for the first time(the one that we cancelled). It included baggage restrictions...we had four bags and each one was over sized according to their list. We also had medical equipment which was not allowed. For the morning flight returning to Beijing we had to leave our hotel in the early am. Bus rides and planes made up most of the time during the four day trip. The day before our final port my wife was feeling worse. We went to the med center and they kept her over night. The next morning she was transported to the hospital in Tianjin where she stayed for five days before flying back home. The reason for this long story is that the cruise had many high points and of course many lows. In the future, I would definitely travel with Viking again. I will always find out who the cruise director is before booking, and will not travel with this one. I will purchase travel insurance on my own and not use TripMate. If traveling to Asia I will fly, train, drive, book hotels on my own and hire my own guides. It is difficult to separate our personal problems with our feelings about THIS Viking cruise. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
My wife and I were trying to get from Europe to Japan mid-October to meet our son for a two week vacation with the least amount of jet lag. This seemed to fit the bill. We could catch the ship in Mumbai, disembark in Hong Kong, spend a ... Read More
My wife and I were trying to get from Europe to Japan mid-October to meet our son for a two week vacation with the least amount of jet lag. This seemed to fit the bill. We could catch the ship in Mumbai, disembark in Hong Kong, spend a week in China before catching a short flight to Tokyo. The ship is beautiful, comfortable cabin, good food, great on board library for readers who like history, memoirs, exploration etc., which I like, not so great for thrillers, romance novels etc. Got to know all the fellow smokers well. Passengers are mostly affluent, retired Americans (I'd guess 80%), the others mostly anglophone from the UK, Australia, NZ. Ports of call and tours were a mixed bag, many at container ports with miles of docklands a long way from anything you'd want to visit, though seeing the container ports themselves was eye-opening, often with beautiful sunsets through the gantries. No way in most places to walk off the ship and explore on your own. Our own favorites were an overnight trip to Kandy (Sri Lanka), Georgetown, Penang, and Viet Nam (Saigon, Da Nang and Hoi An and Halong Bay). The best ports for getting off the ship and exploring on your own are Georgetown, Halong Bay, Singapore and Hong Kong. The port for Bangkok was especially inconvenient, a 2-1/2 hr drive each way in slow traffic. We went in once, spent the second day in port on the ship. In ports like Bangkok and Saigon, where the ship is docked overnight, our advice would be to book a hotel in town and explore on your own. Our main criticism of the ship-organized tours, which we took in every port, is they left no time for wandering around on your own. In Sihanoukville, where we took a tuk-tuk tour we took things into our own hands and told the driver where we wanted to go (a liquor and cigarette store), after which we lost the rest of the tour group, to our relief. Same with Hoi An, where a large majority of those on the bus rebelled against some cultural stop that hadn't been flagged on the itinerary and asked to be dropped off in town to wander on our own. These turned out the best of the tours. A lot of passengers complained about Sihanoukville, which is dirty and poor, with little culturally of interest to see, but we found it interesting, the obviously poor public services, the life story of our tour guide, sent to a child labor camp at 6 where many of the children died of starvation, the signs of Chinese investment (billboards promising great new developments, some built, some half-built and abandoned, some just billboards of fabulous things to come). I hope Viking won't drop it from future cruises based on the comments of others. Our guide was grateful for us coming, and I hope others will come in the future. The ship is beautiful, but not without flaws: it should have teak decks (the rubberized, fake teak decks are deplorable), for cruises in the tropics, there's inadequate shade for the sun deck loungers and after-deck dining, the promenade deck, which is wholly given over to walker, would be much improved if it had deck chairs. The library should have a section of guidebooks to the countries being visited. An ATM onboard dispensing US Dollars, even if not local currency, would also be helpful. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
Viking Orion Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.6
Dining 5.0 4.3
Entertainment 4.0 4.1
Public Rooms 5.0 4.8
Fitness Recreation 5.0 4.4
Family N/A 4.4
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.8
Enrichment 5.0 4.3
Service 4.5 4.6
Value For Money 5.0 4.1

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