Viking is best known for its river cruises, but its Viking Star ocean line has received enormous accolades since its launch, including being named Best New Ocean Ship by the editors of Cruise Critic with a 5-star rating.
The unique and luxurious amenities they offer on their ships make Viking Star the top-of-the-line for couples and solo travelers longing for a relaxing, rejuvenating voyage.
What to Expect on a Viking Star Ocean Cruise
- Free use of the spa for every guest and the spa is incredible!
- Best for couples and solo travelers looking for a relaxing experience.
- Free guided walking excursions at every port.
- Every stateroom has its own private balcony.
- Top notch dining designed to connect you to your destination with local cuisine.
The Viking Star is categorized as mid-size or small, but its modern Scandinavian design makes it intimate and comfortable, with plenty of spacious areas and fewer people to crowd with. There’s no shortage of things to do—the nine decks are comprised of restaurants, theaters, community gathering spaces, the Wintergarden, the spa and pools, and more. Plus, the smaller size allows this ship direct access to most ports.
Staterooms on Viking Star
Each stateroom has its own private balcony and is designed and decorated with an understated elegance that makes Viking famous. There are five different sizes to choose from, each with its own perks. They all come with luxury items, and higher levels include extra services like free dry cleaning and guaranteed reservations at the specialty restaurants.
The ship offers free wifi to all its guests, and has both American and European plugs for charging your gadgets.
Named as one of the five best cruise ship spas in Berlitz Cruising & Cruise Ships 2016, Viking Star’s spa features a Snow Grotto. Following a Nordic tradition, you sit amidst gently falling snow to stimulate your circulation, then hop into the sauna to warm up and relax. You can also get a massage, and all of their features are environmentally friendly. After a long day of exploring each port, the first thing I did when returning to the ship was head to the spa.
The onboard dining offers alfresco dining areas for a refreshing experience, and cuisine designed to connect you to your destination with regional specialties. There are a variety of venues on board, from cafes to pool grills to upscale restaurants for whatever suits your fancy. Unlike other cruise lines, there are no extra fees to dine in any restaurant.
There are even restaurants with alternative dining options to accommodate your dietary needs. Wine, beer, and soft drinks are included at lunch and dinner. If you’re interested in specialty cocktails, you can upgrade to the Silver Spirits package.
Viking Star’s shore excursions are as unique as its other features. They’re designed to enrich your experience and give you a look into the life of the people you’re visiting. Each port includes a free guided walking tour, in addition to the other optional tours.
You can tour amazing architecture, catch cultural performances, visit markets—and for an even more personal touch, you also have the opportunity for welcoming home visits with the locals. Because the Viking Star can access city ports, you have more time in the cities and are close to the heart of exploration.
Viking Star has its own theatres for live performances and for movies, both first-run and destination-themed classics. The live performances are varied, with some geared towards your destination with music and cooking, and some that are beautifully theatrical themed shows. Beyond that, there’s a library to peruse and lectures to immerse you in the knowledge, art, culture, and history of your destination.
Viking’s ocean routes include the Baltics, Northern Europe, the Caribbean, North America, and the Mediterranean. If you are interested in the exact cruise I went on, it was the 10-Day Empires of the Mediterranean, which includes stops in Venice, Dubrovnik, Pula, Kotor, Santorini, Istanbul and more. I arrived 3 days early to explore Venice on my own before embarking on the ship.
Overall, my Viking Star experience was far superior to the other cruises I have tried. I prefer it over ships with thousands of people. Keep in mind, however, that these cruises are best for couples and solo travelers looking for a luxurious and relaxing experience. It is not recommended for families in need of child-friendly activities.