• Write a Review
  • Boards
  • Log In
  • Find a Cruise
  • Deals
  • Excursions
  • More

Viking Orion Review

2019 Best Overall
2019 Best for Cabins
2019 Best for Dining
View More

Find a Viking Orion Cruise

Viking Orion
5.0 / 5.0
406 reviews

Pros
Many perks included in cruise fare, including one-of-a-kind thermal suite and fine dining
Cons
People looking for traditional cruise activities -- casino, glitzy production shows -- will be disappointed
Bottom Line
A solid value on a cruise ship that focuses on exploration onboard and ashore

About

Passengers
930

Crew
550

Passenger to Crew
1.69:1

Launched
2018

Shore Excursions
456
Sails To
Australia & New Zealand, Asia, Alaska, Canada & New England
Viking Ocean Cruise Deals
Colleen McDaniel
Cruise Critic Editor-In-Chief

Viking Orion Overview

With its debut in 2018, Viking Orion became the fifth ship in Viking Ocean Cruises' rapidly growing fleet of nearly identical ships. With a capacity of 930 passengers, Orion is a small ship that's big on amenities designed for those looking for relaxation alongside their exploration.

Free Price Drop Alerts
Get tomorrow's price drops
250,000+ people have entered their email
By proceeding, you agree to Cruise Critic’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

Viking Orion stands out as the first ship in the fleet to feature a high-tech planetarium. And it's fantastic. Passengers with even a passing interest in space will adore this brilliant element, which brings the stars and planets up close. The high-res 26-seat dome theater links to the ship's telescope and shows 3D programs that will make you feel like a kid again. The ship's ties to exploration have been around since its inception; it was even christened by astronaut Anna Fisher. (You'll see photos of space exploration everywhere onboard, further strengthening the theme.) The planetarium is a whiz-bang feature that grabs your attention, but it's certainly not the only thing that makes this beautiful ship so outstanding.

The exceptional cabins are also a big draw. No matter which category you pick, you'll find yourself with plenty of space and amenities that make your voyage more comfortable -- things like heated floors and fog-free mirrors in the bathrooms, spacious balconies and a living area large enough that you'll actually enjoy spending time there.

Then, there's the thermal suite, a part of the spa designed for relaxation, with a heavenly thalassotherapy pool, steam room and snow grotto. Viking's thermal suite is one of the best perks at sea because it's included in the cost of your cruise. The cruise line holds dear its no-nickel-and-diming policy, which makes Viking Orion an excellent value, with included dining even at the ship's specialty restaurants; wine, beer and soft drinks at lunch and dinner; and a shore excursion in each port. The quality and variety of dining on Viking Orion is top-notch, while included shore excursions are fairly standard, with few that stand out. Service in general also is notable, as crew members are friendly, helpful and efficient.

The ship has Nordic roots, so it's no surprise it's decorated throughout in pure Scandinavian style, with light and bright woods and fabrics, shades of blue and clever use natural lighting everywhere. Dining, drinks and even the spa reflect Scandinavian tastes with goods (salmon and waffles, for example) and brands (from Norwegian craft beer to Swedish skin-care products).

Viking Orion succeeds because of its attention to detail, which is evident in every space. The Living Room, the ship's main atrium area, is designed to feel like your living room; comfy chairs and tables fill the space, and these have hidden outlets and USB ports so you can charge your devices while reading a book or listening to the musician play. Details in spaces like the Wintergarden and the Explorers' Lounge reflect deeply personal tastes and memories from Viking Chairman Torstein Hagen and his family.

For more details about cabins, dining and things to do, see the separate sections of this review.


Top Viking Orion Itineraries

View All Viking Orion Itineraries (49)

Fellow Passengers

Cruisers on Viking Orion tend to be 55 and older. They're often well-traveled and have the flexibility to take longer cruises, plus a desire to explore with like-minded travelers. Passengers under 18 aren't permitted to sail (and they likely wouldn't want to, given the atmosphere onboard is adult in nature, with activities and entertainment aimed squarely at baby boomers). Americans, Brits and Aussies make up the primary passenger base, and English is the language spoken onboard.


Viking Orion Dress Code

Passengers wear casual clothing during the day, when time is often dedicated to shore excursions. Almost anything goes, from jeans and T-shirts to summer dresses, shorts and capris. Poolside, swimsuits and cover-ups are the norm; swimming attire isn't worn in indoor spaces.

At night, it's country club casual, with women wearing dresses or dress slacks or skirts with blouses, and men in trousers with button-down or collared shirts. Ties and jackets aren't required and are rare though not unheard of. Those preferring to keep it more casual can dine in the ship's buffet, the World Cafe, which doesn't have a dress code in the evening. There are no formal or elegant nights on Viking Orion.

Viking Orion Inclusions

Viking Orion cruise fares include the basics like your cabin, all dining (even in the specialty restaurants) and entertainment. They also include a number of impressive add-on discretionary items that many cruise lines charge extra for, including Wi-Fi; self-serve laundry; one shore excursion in every port; and wine, soda and beer at lunch and dinner.

You'll pay extra for premium wines and spirits as well as beverages outside of lunch or dinner. The ship's Silver Spirits package is available for US$19.95 per person per day (including 15 percent gratuity); this covers any drink up to US$15, premium wines (and a premium pairing at The Chef's Table) and a 15 percent discount on beverages over US$50. Passengers are allowed to bring beverages -- alcoholic or otherwise -- onboard to drink as they please without paying a corkage fee.

Onboard currency is the U.S. dollar. The recommended gratuity is US$15 per person, per day (except for passengers from Australia and New Zealand) and it's automatically added to onboard bills. Passengers can make adjustments by visiting the customer service desk. Alcoholic beverage purchases levy an automatic 15 percent tip. Tips are not automatically added to spa services. Tips for tour guides aren't included. Passengers wishing to tip guides and drivers can do so at the end of their tours, in cash.


Free Price Drop Alerts
Get tomorrow's price drops
250,000+ people have entered their email
By proceeding, you agree to Cruise Critic’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

Find a Cruise

Viking Orion Ratings

CategoryEditorMember
Cabins5.04.7
Dining5.04.5
Entertainment4.04.1
Public Rooms5.04.8
Fitness Recreation5.04.4
FamilyN/A
Enrichment5.04.4
Service4.54.7
Value For Money5.04.2

Already Booked?

Get to know who you'll be sailing with

More about Viking Orion

Where does Viking Orion sail from?

How much does it cost to go on Viking Orion?

Cruises on Viking Orion start from null per person.

Is Viking Orion a good ship to cruise on?

Viking Orion won 12 awards over the years, including Best Overall, Best for Cabins and Best for Dining in 2019.

Awards and Recognition

Cruise Critic Cruisers’ Choice

  • 2019 Best Overall
  • 2019 Best for Cabins
  • 2019 Best for Dining
  • 2019 Best for Embarkation
  • 2019 Best for Entertainment
  • 2019 Best for Fitness & Recreation
  • 2019 Best for Public Rooms
  • 2019 Best for Service
  • 2019 Best for Shore Excursions
  • 2019 Best for Value
Show More

Viking Orion Member Reviews

Viking Orion
bteng
Sail Date: Jun 2019
My husband and I enjoyed Viking Orion so much that we booked 4 more Viking cruises after this one.... Read More
Viking Orion
LennyW
Sail Date: Jul 2019
The ship Orion was spotless, the cabin steward was fantastic, always there and ready to serve our every request.... Read More
Viking Orion
Gropo
Sail Date: Jan 2020
Participated in the Kitchen Table experience with the Orion Executive Chef on a trip to the market in Melbourne, and dinner prepared by him that evening.... Read More
Viking Orion
dwd62748
Sail Date: Sep 2019
Seeing Japan was new to us and Orion offered a number of interesting stops.... Read More

Viking Ocean Cruises Fleet

Viking Star
5.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating

1878 reviews

Refined, yet relaxed, with an emphasis on fine dining and long port days; highlights are free Wi-Fi, plus wine and beer at meals; holds about 1,000.

Viking Star Cruises to the Baltic Sea Viking Star Cruises to the Mediterranean View All Viking Star Cruises
Viking Sky
5.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating

Thoughtfully designed ship, with gorgeous pool and spa, carries 930 passengers on destination-focused cruises; fares include Wi-Fi, select shore tours and drinks with meals.

Viking Sea
5.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating

All-balcony ship carries 930 passengers and impresses with airy design, multiple dining venues and gorgeous pool deck; fares include wine with meals, Wi-Fi, tours, spa access.

Viking Orion
5.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating

Viking Orion is Viking Ocean Cruises' fifth 930-passenger vessel, which is almost identical to its predecessors.

Viking Sun
5.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating

The 930-passenger Viking Sun, will spend its maiden season sailing Viking Ocean Cruises' first world cruise -- a 141-day itinerary visiting five continents.

Viking Jupiter
5.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating

Launched in 2019, Viking Jupiter is the sixth ship in Viking Ocean Cruises' mostly identical fleet of 930-passenger vessels.

Viking Venus

Viking's seventh oceangoing ship has the same magic formula of smart inclusions and sumptuous Nordic design.

Want to cruise smarter?
Get expert advice, insider tips and more.
By proceeding, you agree to Cruise Critic’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.
Cookie Consent