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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2018
We cruised on Regatta (sister ship) a few years ago (Rio-Amazon-Miami) and had a very positive experience. This cruise (Dubai-Capetown) was disappointing in comparison. The ship is slightly aged, but kept in excellent condition. ... Read More
We cruised on Regatta (sister ship) a few years ago (Rio-Amazon-Miami) and had a very positive experience. This cruise (Dubai-Capetown) was disappointing in comparison. The ship is slightly aged, but kept in excellent condition. We upgraded to concierge verandah cabin for this trip so were prepared for the level of accommodation; no complaints. We're still not sure what "concierge service" means, though. The service was good but we didn't know what to expect above and beyond what we got on our previous cruise. We found the food and service to be excellent, especially in Toscana. I have difficulty hearing in noisy environments, so after our first meal in the Grand Dining room, I learned to request seating just inside the entrance, away from the busy waiters' serving stations. The entertainment was of average quality. A couple of the professionals were extremely talented; a couple were not. Some of the scheduled entertainers were no-shows or delayed due to travel or visa problems. One such delay resulted in an impromptu Passenger Talent Show: mildly entertaining but not what we hoped for. The String quartet was excellent -- highly professional, and the ship's band was super talented. The six young on-board performers were equally talented. They put on several very entertaining Broadway-type shows as well as separate performances. No disappointment there! With a number of sea days, there were activities like bracelet-making, embroidery, bingo, and other parlour games -- not of interest to us. Two "Enrichment" speakers helped fill in the days: one was well-informed and entertaining while the other was rather pedantic and didn't hold our interest. Surprisingly, there were no "Destination" Speakers. Adequate information about upcoming ports was very lacking and very missed! Activities (e.g., more and varied speakers) and more substantive entertainment would have helped the long sea days pass. In retrospect, the cruise itinerary could have been better thought-out. One or two of the four stops in India could have been skipped, with the time added to other stops. Sailing for a day or two (or more?) just to spend a few hours in the next port, now seems like a waste of time. For instance, we sailed west for about two days from Seychelles to Mombassa, then part of a day to Zanzibar, and then a day and a half back east to Nosy Be (Madagascar) where we anchored for only six hours! In our case, Madagascar was of more interest than four stops in India. After an hour delay in tendering plus 40-minute boat rides to and from Nosy Komba to see lemurs (a couple hours) there was no time left to go ashore in Nosy Be or any other part of Madagascar! Very disappointing! Being rather inexperienced with shore excursions, and concerned with being left behind if we were delayed returning to the ship, we opted for the security of booking through Oceania. Never again! The excursions we chose (based on brief, sometimes inaccurate or misleading descriptions) were mostly disappointments. Expensive disappointments. As an example, an excursion in Durban was described as "panoramic", which, to me, suggests there will be stops where photos of interesting places can be taken. The actual excursion was a half-hour drive to "Umhlanga Rocks" ( apparently not a natural formation, but a high-end residential community instead), another half-hour drive to "Ballito" (apparently a small beach town, popular with locals) where the guide disappeared to apparently look for restroom facilities, leaving us to wander on our own for 15 minutes, then another hour-long drive back to Durban, where we drove non-stop through the downtown area, trying to snap pictures of places like "...the Theatre, where they have plays...". As another reviewer remarked, too many excursions are made up of too many people: the guides are often too far from most of the group to be heard clearly (both on the buses and on walks). And even guides in "third-world" excursions should understand not to let their charges get strung out for a hundred feet in unfamiliar narrow streets and pathways. These examples reflect our (and others') experiences on a large percentage of our excursions. Assuming we ever do cruise with Oceania again, it's very unlikely we'll use their excursions. Many people we met aboard (some had multiple Oceania cruises) were equally disappointed and expressed strong doubts about using Oceania again. The general opinion was that after Oceania was acquired by Norwegian, cost-cutting and short-term profit-taking have caused a noticeable reduction in the level of service. Unfortunately, our many good experiences on this cruise (especially with the crew and staff members) were offset by the excursions and other disappointments; we don't expect to use Oceania in future. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
My wife & I have done many cruises over the last 10 years,And this has to be the the lower end of all we have done,If this had been our 1st it would have been our last,1 With CMV, 1 with Tui/Marella/Thomson,2 with Cunard & about 16 ... Read More
My wife & I have done many cruises over the last 10 years,And this has to be the the lower end of all we have done,If this had been our 1st it would have been our last,1 With CMV, 1 with Tui/Marella/Thomson,2 with Cunard & about 16 with P&O,The check in at Southampton was amazingly quick,15 mins from pulling up to cabin is the fastest we have ever experienced,After that it was nothing special,We were experiencing a banging noise outside our cabin,we did contact the pursers desk,the head deck steward did respond very quick,after 30 minutes or so,The desk phoned and said it was a faulty part on the deck above,deck 9 lido,and was required for operational purposes from 07:00 to 23:00 hrs.,They did give some compensation & ear plugs.We were hoping that the faulty part was going to be repaired or replaced at our 1st. stop,Madeira,but no it wasn't and we had to endure this noise for the whole of the Voyage.The there's the entertainment,Or lack of it,There was an illness with 1 of the theatre group,OK I can understand that the show had to be rearranged,so accepted that,but the rest was poor,Pat Patton the the Golden Lion EVERY night,not that good either,A Juggler on the theatre,Come on,we are not 10 year olds,There was 1 night they had a pianist in 3 different bars/venues at the same time,John Martin "comedian" seriously needs new material,He's been on cruise ships for years & is still using the sames gags,Keeps going on about being from Bootle,I thought Liverpool was full of comedians,John not one of them.Entertainments teams didn't mix with the passengers,Cunard like to call us guests,Equinox were good stuck up in the club,but that was empty,with no atmosphere,They did the Golden Lion one night & the Queens room on the last,both were rocking when they were there,I did tick the poor box on the feed back,And the Entertainment Director phoned my cabin & asked if I/We could have a talk about my poor comment,I felt like a naughty child being summonsed to the head teacher,But he was OK,Don't know the average age,We are both in our late 50s.,were very young compered to others,We mention this to the director that Cunard need to move with the times.and start looking after today's generation of cruisers and not who are in the latter years of life,He did seem a little shocked at that comment,But when he thought about it,knew what we meant,they need to rotate the entertainers,We were asked about a cigarette stump/butt on our balcony & we don't smoke, Everything else was great. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
We arrived at the Singapore transfers from the hotel to the ship a bit chaotic but eventually got on board,we stayed in a silver suite which is lovely and the ship is also tastefuly decorated. The food is poor the speciality restaurants ... Read More
We arrived at the Singapore transfers from the hotel to the ship a bit chaotic but eventually got on board,we stayed in a silver suite which is lovely and the ship is also tastefuly decorated. The food is poor the speciality restaurants I wouldn’t bother with , in room dining is also shocking ,hot rocks and the pizza bar are very good.we found that the food was always Luke warm at best ,indochine is neither Thai or Indian it’s a bit of a poor attempt at both . The staff in general are what you would expect but the reception staff are rude ,don’t book a message during a show as you won’t enjoy the experience far too much second hand noise fighting with the zen music. We spent 3 days in port in Yangon surrounded by lorries and containers with a large cargo ship just off the aft spewing out black smoke the excursions were a nightmare due to travelling distances really couldn’t recommend this itinerary . Overall not worth the money loads of room for improvement. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2018
The ship is lovely except for the old windows which need painting. The dining room food and service was outstanding. Thank you Vishal ..the egg man, for looking after us. The Living Room was our favourite place...classy, quiet, and ... Read More
The ship is lovely except for the old windows which need painting. The dining room food and service was outstanding. Thank you Vishal ..the egg man, for looking after us. The Living Room was our favourite place...classy, quiet, and relaxing with the ever changing view. The buffet food was always only luke warm. Many passengers complained but this was never resolved. Shore excursions were well organised. Dr Ron Orenstein guest lecturer was fantastic. Bars and lounges were very nice with good service. Missed two ports because of bad weather and mechanical issues. Uninspired entertainment. Piped music was horrible and repetitive. The ships general areas not very clean with the same crumbs on the floor for days under tables. Beds and linens were wonderful but no clock in the cabin. Captain was very entertaining and did give plenty of updates.Feel there could have been more guest lecturers on board talking about night sky, glaciers, geology, weather, and marine history. All staff were wonderful...very attentive. The big thing was the buffet food. No excuse for it always being barely luke warm. Many really upset passengers over this. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
Have enjoyed previous Viking River Cruises so much we wanted to try the Viking Ocean Cruise and wanted to see Australia before we got too old to travel that distance. We found the Viking Ocean Ships professionalism is not up to par with ... Read More
Have enjoyed previous Viking River Cruises so much we wanted to try the Viking Ocean Cruise and wanted to see Australia before we got too old to travel that distance. We found the Viking Ocean Ships professionalism is not up to par with the River Cruises. My wife is gluten free with some other food allergies which we had informed the Viking booking agent but the available foods for her on ship were below par. The ship was beautiful and functioned well but much of the staff seemed confused and inexperienced. A few of the tours, especially Komodo Island, where unorganized and actually dangerous as the steps necessary to access the docks were old and hazardous and times to load on the return exceeded one hour in very hot and sunny environment. Many were showing signs of heat exhaustion. Once again, the ship and the cabins were very nice. The entertainment was nice. There were many different food offerings as long as you do not have any food issues. The Viking booking agent made changes to our itinerary that the Viking Ship staff and we were unaware of that affected our post cruise itinerary causing us much distress.60 Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
We choose this cruise because we loved our Viking river cruise on the Danube the previous year and also because I've always wanted to explore the Amazon river and rain forest since I was young. We have sailed on RCL 4 time and ... Read More
We choose this cruise because we loved our Viking river cruise on the Danube the previous year and also because I've always wanted to explore the Amazon river and rain forest since I was young. We have sailed on RCL 4 time and Princess once. This was our fist Viking ocean cruise and more than likely our last. The staff on board was excellent. Every single member of the crew was friendly and helpful. They felt like family to us. The ship was very nicely appointed in Scandinavian design. The Explorers lounge and Mamsens were particularly nice common areas. The spa with the steam and cold rooms we used frequently. Our room was acquitted but could have had more storage space. Dining was hit or miss. We had some excellent meals at the Chefs Table restaurant. We also ate some under done steaks and over done fish at the restaurant and the buffet. The musicians and entertainers we professional. Typical of the entertainment you would find cruise ship. The Brazilian female singer was wonderful. Snorkeling in Saint Thomas and sailing on a catamaran Saint Lucia were wonderful. The shore excursion in Brazil were as good they could be is the best way I can describe it. Our focus was to see as much natural beauty in the Amazon region. The city tours were a bit underwhelming and struck me as typical cities you would find in many developing countries. We could have skipped Belem all together. We never got off the bus probably for good reason. We enjoyed the Pink Dolphin encounter, the survival trek, piranha fishing, and the search for caimans excursions. I wished we saw more wildlife. It's my understanding the best time to see animals in the area are at dawn or after dark. The caimans excursion was at night so we did see what we were looking for. The other excursions were during the day so the animals were not active. Our tour guides did their best to find what they could though which we appreciated. Our biggest complaint about the cruise was the lack on activities. We had 8 days at sea and we were not big on catching up on reading so we really started to go stir crazy. The few activities they did offer like the lectures (which were great!) felt mobbed. If you didn't arrive 30 minutes early to the theater you had trouble finding a seat. The atmosphere generally speaking felt a little sedate on the ship. This is what many people on the ship enjoyed, but it just wasn't for us. I think we need a little more excitement. It seemed like Viking I using the minimalist activity model which works on the river cruises but does not for a ship this size. Our next complaint is that it seemed like we had to wait in long lines more than I would expect. Wait in a line for a table for dinner. Wait in line to get into the Theater. Wait inline to get out of the Theater. Wait in line for the excursions. Wait in line for crab legs! We didn't feel this way on larger ships we've been on. Lastly, We purchased the premium drink package and the ship started running out of our preferred beverages 2 weeks into our 3 week cruise. We talked to others who were having the same issue. Viking should plan better for this or ask us what we like prior to departure. All this being said, we are going on another Viking river Cruise this summer. All the issues I have with Viking Sea seem fixable. I'm hopeful Viking figures it out. Matt Note: we had to conserve water while in the amazon river since the ship could not desalinate fresh water. Not a big deal but something I didn't know prior to the cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
The Star Pride, food service and crew met all of our expectations and are the reason we continually pick Windstar. On board services were first class. Now for the cons: Since space is not available for a large swimming pool, the Swim ... Read More
The Star Pride, food service and crew met all of our expectations and are the reason we continually pick Windstar. On board services were first class. Now for the cons: Since space is not available for a large swimming pool, the Swim Tub is a good idea; however, most passengers use it as a second jacuzzi and just sit there. This means that those of us wanting to swim, have no facility. Windstar needs to figure his out. We would like to see more reasonable priced ship sponsored tours that are comparable to local tours obtained through services like trip advisor. Our biggest grip and disappointment on this cruise was most port stops the first week did not met what I would call Windstar standards. We suggested to Windstar the following:(like they would listen to me.) No visits to St Thomas on Sunday , or better yet, none at all. Town completely closed down and a waste of time to visit. Folks in town that I spoke to said,” there is no way they will open on a Sunday to a 200 passenger ship”. Poor port choice. No stops in Montserrat, Little bay. Nothing, absolutely nothing to do but see the volcano.and exclusion zone. Waste of time. Roads are poorly maintained and dangerous to drive on. Taxis in poor condition. Why not cruise off shore from volcano, explain eruption and exclusion zone on speaker system and continue on to next destination. Very poor port choice Josh Van Dyke. worst port of all. Too devastated, a shanty town. White beach okay but figure out how to get tender there instead of docking on out skirts of town and then forced to take a taxi to beach. Virgin Gorda another do nothing stop. The chosen beach BBQ area was picturesque and fully functional but immediate surroundings were devastated by the hurricane. Due to rough seas we had an fabulous BBQ on the ship. Poor port choice. It feels Like no one from Windstar has really assessed the Montserrat, Jost Van Dyke or the Virgin Gorda environment. Very, very poor port choices Conclusion is Windstar must do a better job in selecting ports of call on the first week of the San Juan and Virgin Islands itinerary,especially for islands affected by Hurricane Irma. We were very displeased and disappointed. Our stops on the second week, Windward Island surf and Sunset cruise were far better than first week.In fact, if I would have known how badly devastated some areas were the first week, We would have only booked the Windward Islands segment.Shame on me, should of done my home work, I hate learning the hard way. I also feel more reasonable beverage prices would be appreciated . $7.99 for a mini bar beer is outrageous and gouging. I stopped drinking the second week. Beverage packages are not designed for those of us that have partners who do not drink or for those who have a couple drinks a day. Dress codes are hard to enforce but at times there are violations that should to be addressed. For instance every night at dinner either at Candles or Amphora, their are guests wearing shorts, or blue jeans, tee shirts and sandals. Windstar is a cut above the rest and dress code violations should not be permitted or Windstar should change the code. Overall we have graded this cruise experience as a 3 out of 5 due to the first week’s choice of ports. We have done four Windstar cruises this is our the first “3”, all the rest graded “5+”. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2018
Without a doubt, we had a great cruise on Sojourn Oct-Dec 2018, pretty much flawless, so we booked a 94 day cruise( Auckland to Cape Town). Total disappointment, the entire cruise was fraught with inconsistency in service and chaos in ... Read More
Without a doubt, we had a great cruise on Sojourn Oct-Dec 2018, pretty much flawless, so we booked a 94 day cruise( Auckland to Cape Town). Total disappointment, the entire cruise was fraught with inconsistency in service and chaos in dining rooms and bars. To say the least, we were disappointed in Seabourn Service standard not even 1 star. These are the highlights (tongue in cheek): Bar staff totally disorganized and inexperienced ( served gin/tonic with stick of olives) Terrace outside dining chaotic and inefficient, sometimes service other times not Main dining room food bland, monotonous,poorly prepared, service inexperienced Sometimes staff indifferent and other times friendly were not knowledgeable What was good: The itinerary and ports of call fabulous The ship itself and captain great The Ventures tours interesting with competent staff The emphasis on safety in tendering excellent The cabin a haven of refuge Summary Clearly, the cruise industry is struggling with high fuel-costs,labor costs and commissions to travel agencies. So revenues from passenger bookings are off set with cost cutting in services areas such as labor and food etc. to achieve operating margin and profitability curves, a sad commentary and unhappy experience for passengers. Seabourn did not meet. mission or vision for this cruise: What's so special about poor service and poor food?, Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
Princess has it right on Embarkation and Disembarkation. Smooth process proved to be one of the best. The ship is older and void of all the exciting pastimes of newer ships but full of traditional pastimes for older passengers. Cabin ... Read More
Princess has it right on Embarkation and Disembarkation. Smooth process proved to be one of the best. The ship is older and void of all the exciting pastimes of newer ships but full of traditional pastimes for older passengers. Cabin service was so exceptional that any flaws in furnishings was not noticed. Wow service for sure there! Food was exceptional in all aspects..better than any other cruise line I have experienced. Dining service was exceptional as well. Entertainment left a little to be desired. Needed more productions, more seating and better entertainers...something more breathtaking like "arial" acts, and such. Found myself bored at certain times, but mainly because of the weather and lack of other exciting activities. Not just gambling. Service everywhere was exceptional and I loved the staff. Only a couple of issues there, not worth mentioning. The Islands were awesome, economical and interesting. Less expensive than Ensenada, Mexico (who had ridiculously high prices) and no bargaining. One fan for $7.....really!!!! Don't even get off at that port. The cruise was rough sailing but we never got sick so hats off to Prncess! We would recommend but would not go again. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
Chose countries I was interested in exploring...Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia. I have traveled on Viking Riverboats twice before, and I was disappointed in the ocean cruise experience with Viking compared to other lines (I have ... Read More
Chose countries I was interested in exploring...Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia. I have traveled on Viking Riverboats twice before, and I was disappointed in the ocean cruise experience with Viking compared to other lines (I have traveled on Holland America, Celebrity, Royal Caribbean, and Silver Seas). Overall, I felt the excursion experience lacked attention to the travelers, as excursions sites were poor, and we spent most of the time on the bus driving around. The local tour guide companies were less than well experienced, and the guides themselves were simply not helpful beyond the script they read to us. I realize that several ports were primarily for commercial travel with few amenities geared to the passenger ships, but Viking did little to compensate for that. When we exited the ship there were no personnel in the 'tents' at the bottom of the gangway, and as a passenger you were on your own to find your way to the terminal or to the buses (somewhat dangerous in an unknown country). The preparation for off-board travel lacked useful information also. I must give complements to the onboard staff who were wonderful, taking good care of my roommate who contracted the 'noro' virus and was isolated in the room for 2 days. In my opinion, the overall experience was 'not up to Viking standards'. Read Less

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