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Glenndale

Viking Ocean Included Excursions

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We are considering a cruise on Viking Spirit in May 2019 and are interested in opinions on their included excursions.

Are they mainly walking tours or do they include less mundane offerings.

The appeal of Viking is that the cruise price seems to be more or less the bottom line or am I delusional? I'm not expecting included helicopter tours and the like but would hope for more than a walking tour.

Just for info the cruise we are looking at visits Japan and Alaska.

Thanks for any insights :)

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I recently had to cancel my Tokyo to Vancouver cruise. The included tours are not all walking tours, but are very basic. If you have been there before, the included tours are not of interest. But their optional tours are reasonably priced.

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I see from the Viking website that they are still in the process of figuring out the details for 2019 but you can see what they have in mind so far by going to the webpage for the itinerary you are looking at (I'm assuming that it is Tokyo to Vancouver). Click on the tab marked itinerary and then scroll down the page to where you see the day-by-day, city-by-city description of the tour and click on Day2. This will take you to a page dedicated to the port of call of the day; scroll down to see the shorex (currently, these pages are not well populated for 2019 cruises but they will be as time goes on). Scroll up to the top pf the page again and click on the NEXT button to navigate to the next day. Remember that at this point, whatever you see for 2019 is subject to change.

 

In general, Viking's included tours are either walking tours or panoramic bus tours and are of a couple hours duration. Only very occasionally are they more than half a day (4 hours).

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As usual, Peregrina 's thorough and helpful reply tells you most of what you need to know. You could follow her directions to see the more extensive list of options for a more established cruise to check out how they vary the choices. The included tours often combine some bus touring with some walking, with time on your own. In many ports, there are shuttles running all day back to the ship, so you can start with the include tour and then remain behind to explore on your own.

 

We did a mix of included and optional tours, and I agree that prices were reasonable. On the Empires of the Mediterranean this April, for our optional tours we paid around $69 per person for most, and $179 per person for an all day tour with an include meal.

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I will check out the Viking website, thanks to Peregrina651 for the detailed instructions :)

I am pleased to hear that the other tours are reasonably priced as Oceania's tour prices seem to me to be crazy and generally we organise tours thru the roll call.

Sitraveler, we will be cruising with you in November, I'm pleased you decided to stay on the cruise. Look forward to meeting you.

Thanks to all who responded.

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I will check out the Viking website, thanks to Peregrina651 for the detailed instructions :)

I am pleased to hear that the other tours are reasonably priced as Oceania's tour prices seem to me to be crazy and generally we organise tours thru the roll call.

Sitraveler, we will be cruising with you in November, I'm pleased you decided to stay on the cruise. Look forward to meeting you.

Thanks to all who responded.

 

Oceania has long been known for the worst over-pricing on their shore excursions -- and then for cancelling them 'for lack of interest' [duh!] In planning for the Viking British Isles tour next year, I have found a few included excursions that seem to cover the area well enough. But for a good majority of ports I am arranging private or roll call excursions that will include more than the Viking optional for the same or a lower price [just like on every other cruise line we have taken]. This is making me think that the Viking cruises are overpriced -- but maybe the onboard quality will impress me enough to say it is still worthwhile!

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Glenndale

 

Looking forward to meeting you on Riviera. If memory serves the included tour in Tokyo is Tokyo on your own. That means they take you there and bring you back- nothing else. On the inaugural, Rome on your own had a cost, guided tour around Rome did not?? DUH

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Oceania has long been known for the worst over-pricing on their shore excursions -- and then for cancelling them 'for lack of interest' [duh!] In planning for the Viking British Isles tour next year, I have found a few included excursions that seem to cover the area well enough. But for a good majority of ports I am arranging private or roll call excursions that will include more than the Viking optional for the same or a lower price [just like on every other cruise line we have taken]. This is making me think that the Viking cruises are overpriced -- but maybe the onboard quality will impress me enough to say it is still worthwhile!

 

I honestly don't believe that the included tours are the biggest selling point for sailing with Viking.

We either DIY or private tour probably 90% of the time.

We sail Viking for a whole lot of reasons that do not include what their tours have to offer. But that is us.

 

My point is that I think the Viking value is far reaching over their included tours.....and yet those who enjoy walking or bus tours find great value in them.

 

We travel other lines as well.....most often for their specific itinerary or because others we want to travel with are on those itineraries.....and on them we DIY or private just as we do on Viking.

 

It's nice to have the choice. Hope you feel the same after your first VO sailing!! And same to the OP.

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When we cruised with Viking for the Paris to Normandy RIVER Cruise we found the included excursions to be very good. But everything I have been reading about the Viking OCEAN excursions leads me to believe that they will be much more mundane. We will be doing the Iconic Cities of the Western Mediterranean in July/2018 and are anxiously waiting to hear of others' experiences with the included tours on Viking Ocean.

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When we cruised with Viking for the Paris to Normandy RIVER Cruise we found the included excursions to be very good. But everything I have been reading about the Viking OCEAN excursions leads me to believe that they will be much more mundane. We will be doing the Iconic Cities of the Western Mediterranean in July/2018 and are anxiously waiting to hear of others' experiences with the included tours on Viking Ocean.

 

 

Done 3 Viking River cruises and one Viking Ocean. Viking Homelands was an excellent experience, but I felt the included tours were not nearly as good as the river tours. Less just walk off and go on a walking tour from most ocean ports. One factor could be that Ocean visits large cities, cities with traffic problems, so the bus included tours are less fun. Also, in cities like St Petersburg, Rome, etc. when a half dozen or more 3,500+ passenger cruise ships all dock, the city's streets fill with busses and the attractions invariably get mobbed.

 

I found the somewhat pricey Optional tours much better. The ones we selected were away from the crowds.

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Glenndale, You might want to check on the availability of the Viking Spirit cruises in May 2019. When we booked the Hong Kong to Tokyo segment in May it was filling up fast. As of today it is listed on the website as completely sold out. There are a few cabins left for the Tokyo to Vancouver segment, but mostly suites. Just a tip.

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For our Into the Midnight Sun cruise, there were more coach (with a bit of walking) tours than pure walking tours, at least for the included tours. It depends upon the port. Many ocean ports are too big, or situated too far from areas of tourist interest, to make it easy to provide a walking tour for a large number of people.

 

My personal opinion after doing 2 ocean cruises with Viking is that their included tours are generally pretty good, and for a cruise line to provide these tours to 900 people amazes me. In London we saw a lot more than I ever expected, including two very interesting stops. Of course, if you're willing to pay for a private guide and spend a whole day in the city, you can see a lot more. A lot depends upon the city you're visiting, though. In some ports (Caribbean ports come to mind), the included tours may be a bit disappointing just because of the limited infrastructure and tourist activities in these places. However, I always do some research before I cruise and find out what's available each place I go, regardless of whether it's a big city or a small beach town. Then if I decide to take Viking's included tour, I usually have time before or after the tour to do some exploring on my own, which makes me happy.

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Roothy123 - I have to agree with you, the organisation of the included excursions was always very well handled. No one seemed to ever be waiting and staggered times meant no queuing to get back on board thereby no impinging on the Prosecco time! Ha ha!

 

We did wave to you in Leknes when we arrived but you'd all headed out on your excursions and by the time we got back to the dock, you had all gone! Truly ships that passed in the afternoon! :D

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Roothy here, but using family member's Cruise Critic name, since he's already logged in.

 

Ooh, I loved Leknes, and could have spent a whole day there. I did one of the optional excursions there and really enjoyed it. Since we were out quite a while and didn't have much time before we departed (short day in port) I didn't see much of Leknes itself, or the small port area where you docked and we got off the tenders. However, that afternoon and night cruising north through the Lofoten Islands was magical. The scenery and light were amazing. I was glad we had eaten in the World Cafe that evening so I could do some scenic cruising, camera by my side.

 

We had one day of excursions where there were complaints about the organization/execution, but it was a pretty unusual situation. In Honningsvag, when we only had a half day there, departure for the first groups was delayed because gangway placement was tricky due to the tide situation - and because another ship got the better docking location. All the excursions ended up being bunched together - and just about everyone on the ship was taking a Viking excursion, since there's not much to do on your own in Honningsvag! Also, lots of people came early to the theater and that made it hard to find a seat for a while. Then to top it off, there was a medical emergency which delayed our departure. Whew! There WAS some grumbling going on, but really, I think Viking did a great job with the obstacles they faced. We all eventually got to the Cape and it was a hoot!

 

In Geiranger, the included excursion was very similar to what we had paid for when we were there before, using the vendor that's right at the pier. We decided to take Viking's included excursion anyway, and it actually went one cool place we hadn't been to before - a large lake up in the mountains. Then I wandered around Geiranger, finding places I missed before. It was one of those half excursion/half wander and explore days that I've come to love!

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Roothy,

 

I was on the Oceania cruise with you a few years ago and we were in Geiranger. A little while ago, we saw a movie called "The Wave". It was so interesting to see a familiar place in a movie. You should check it out now that you're home. It concerns a tsunami in Geiranger fjord!

 

Mia

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Roothy,

 

I was on the Oceania cruise with you a few years ago and we were in Geiranger. A little while ago, we saw a movie called "The Wave". It was so interesting to see a familiar place in a movie. You should check it out now that you're home. It concerns a tsunami in Geiranger fjord!

 

Mia

Thanks, Mia! I've never seen anything filmed, or about, Geiranger - unless you count the cool webcam there! I'll look for "The Wave."

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