Viking Star Cruise Review by REHarris
- Sail Date: May 2019
- Destination: Mediterranean
We started our trip with the Tuscany pre-sailing stay and were so glad we did. They put us up in a beautiful Tuscan Villa just outside of Florence and it couldn’t have been more charming. The accommodations were excellent, the service outstanding and the views were what you’ve seen in movies and pictures. We were taken on full day tours in high end motor coaches with a guide who put all other guides to shame. The tours were nice but as usual, the local guides tried to pump too much information into your ear so off we went to explore on our own once the meeting place and times were set. We enjoy the local shops & such but live just finding a small outdoor cafe and having a coffee or a glass of wine with some small nibbles.
Viking bussed us to Venice where we picked up the Viking Star. What a beautiful ship. For a small ship it was quite large. But by comparison, we were docked next to the Royal Caribbean Oasis of the Sea and we were tiny by comparison. We had cabin 8007 which we found to be a perfect location. The ship was easy to learn and easy to get around. The first thing you notice is how warm and friendly the crew is. From the stateroom stewards to the bar tenders, waiters, kitchen staff, etc. We spoke to many of the staff we came in contact with and they were genuinely happy to be there despite the hard work and long hours. To a person they all thought Viking was the best of all the cruise lines to work for.
There were bars & restaurants all around the ship so getting a drink or a little something to eat was never an issue. There is the World Cafe buffet for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, The Restaurant for breakfast & dinner and two other specialty restaurants that required reservations. Viking has a casual attitude so resort casual is fine for all the restaurants and pretty much anything goes in the buffet. So gentleman, leave your suits and sports coats at home. The real treasure is up in the Explorers Lounge which has a fabulous bar and lounge overlooking the bow of the ship as well as a little cafe that serves the best breakfast waffle you’ve ever eaten and then later in the day some of the best desserts. Cannot recommend it more.
There is a wonder spa, workout facility, and an area near the spa with a hot pool, sauna, steam room and a snow grotto. Kinda crazy fun.
The included tours and fine for getting around the various ports of call but there are many optional tours available as well at an additional expense. Check those out on line. The included tour in Rome was our least favorite so if there’s something really specific you want to see or do there, book that.
Overall, I’m not sure you could have a better cruising experience than with Viking. Nothing in life is perfect but Viking seems to get as close as humanly possible. Now, I’ll caveat that with if you’re a whiny type who just likes to complain about the littlest thing, we’ll, nothing’s going to make you happy so just stay home so the rest of the passengers can enjoy themselves.
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