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Viking Star Cruise Review
5.0 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
1,878 Reviews

Too much to see, too little time!

Viking Star Cruise Review by Goldsurfer1

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Trip Details
  • Sail Date: Jun 2019
  • Destination: the Mediterranean
  • Cabin Type: undefined

We have sailed a number of Viking river cruises but this was our first ocean cruise. Suffice it to say - we rebooked the same ship and the same stateroom for a 2021 Viking Homelands cruise. Loved the ship but went on so many land excursions that we didn't have enough time aboard to enjoy all the ship had to offer. Embarking and disembarking was easy and well organized for the excursions.

The main and specialty dining rooms were excellent all around. The World Cafe (buffet) had a good quick food selection (several specialty stations) but I thought the waiter service (juice, coffee, etc.) was poorly staffed (not attentive at times). Satellite food areas on the ship were convenient - afternoon tea in the Winter garden, grilled food at the Pool Grill, and a very nice manager managed to find me cookies late night after the "cookie bar" had closed.

Until after we had boarded, I didn't realize that free limited shore transportation was available in any port where a town center was not close to the ship. Otherwise I would have booked fewer shore excursions and done more exploring on our own. That being said, we did book one or more shore excursions for each day. We spent 3 days on our own prior to and immediately after the cruise. As such, we immersed ourselves (on our own) in Barcelona and Venice then limited those cities' shore excursions to ones we felt that might be easier to do on the Viking excursions. So in Barcelona, we opted for the Viking Montserrat excursion (fair) and in Venice I did the Viking Secrets of the Doges Palace (terrible). All my most favorite excursions involved smaller boats - (Marseille) Summer in Cassis & Calanques, (Corfu) Paleokastritsa Coastal Views by Boat & Old Corfu, and (Split) The Krka Waterfalls & Town of Skradin. And yes, other ports also had good excursions. Don't miss - La Sagrada Familia Cathedral in Barcelona; it is unlike anything you could imagine.

Free tours versus optional tours - some optional tours include content from the free tours so read up to prevent overlap. For example, Marsailles - our tour guide for (optional tour) Summer in Cassis & Calanques covered at least 50% of the (included tour) Scenic Marseille. The free tours are good but I feel many of the optional tours are great.

I didn't rate the Entertainment and the Fitness & Recreation Ratings below because I just didn't have enough time to partake in all the offerings.

For us, having no (or few) children on the ship makes it more relaxing. Kudos for this.

The entire staff is geared toward assisting you and they do a good job of it.

2020 plans - a week in Paris then a Viking river cruise up the Seine through the Heart of Normandy


Goldsurfer1's Full Rating Summary
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Onboard Experience
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
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Shore Excursions
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Cabin Review

Just the right size cabin. Best houseman we could ever hope for. Would have liked a little more drawer space but managed without it.


Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

Barcelona

Nice bus ride. Interesting place but too limitedl to spend that much time there.

Cassis Walking Tour

Summer in Cassis & Calanques included a boat tour

View All 37 Cassis Walking Tour Reviews
Marseille

Was good until afternoon when we took the Summer in Cassis & Calanques excursion which duplicated much of this tour (but without this tours stops)

Monte Carlo Walking Tour

Walk from ship

View All 55 Monte Carlo Walking Tour Reviews
Nice Walking Tour

Nice on Your Own - Its fun to explore at your leisure

View All 13 Nice Walking Tour Reviews
Florence (Livorno)

Florence on Your Own - Too bad we visited on a day that many attractions were closed. But we still enjoyed it!

Included hours on our own in Vatican city

View All undefined undefined Reviews
Amalfi Coast

Great bus ride but scary at times

View All 284 Amalfi Coast Reviews
Walking Tour

Very crowded at times. The "on your own" time (after the guided tour) was good

View All 77 Walking Tour Reviews
Split

I love waterfalls and the Skradin local lunch with local entertainment was nice too.

Venice

Secrets of the Doges Palace - The guided part was a dirty dungeon - not worth the effort. The palace itself (self guided) was amazing.


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Goldsurfer1
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