As it was my first Viking Ocean Cruise, I had no clue as to what to expect onboard. Having sailed with Viking before on their river cruise itineraries, their ocean ships were entirely new to me.
I had the chance to get onboard the Viking Jupiter, for the second half of the “Homelands” itinerary. Embarking at Berlin and sailing through the North and Baltic Sea to Norway, I got to experience just what it was like to ocean cruise with Viking.
My expectations were exceeded — Viking went above and beyond in experience and service, showing again just how great of a company it is to sail with. There is something special about the Viking (river and ocean) Cruises. You feel like you’re with family the entire way. The food is excellent, the experience enriching, and you can’t beat the service they provide.
Getting to sail this part of the itinerary, this time with my dad with me, was memorable. The whole week onboard, we kept raving about everything from the wine lists to the food, to the daily excursions. When it comes to cruising, I love that their ships are intimate — only 930 passengers. Often you feel like you have the whole ship to yourself. The design is elegant and calming, just what you want for a week or two of sailing.
So here’s a look at what to expect on a Viking Ocean Cruise, the details, the restaurants, excursions, and more. For those looking for river cruises, please read more on this post.
What to Expect on a Viking Ocean Cruise
Quick facts about a Viking Ocean Cruise
(specifically the Viking Jupiter Ship)
- Passengers: 930
- Crew: 465
- Built: 2019
- Decks: 9
- Outdoor Pools: 2 (1 with an optional retractable roof)
- Restaurants: 9 options (including room service)
Restaurants and Dining on a Viking Ocean Cruise
Onboard the Viking Jupiter, what blew me away was the number of options for dining. On top of that, the food is incredible. They really understand the importance of quality and you find that in their menus that highlight regional cuisine as you sail.
The restaurants onboard:
The Restaurant: This is the main restaurant that requires no reservations. It is white linen, open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The menus have two sides — one that is the mainstay dishes and the other that rotates each day focusing on regional cuisine. The interior space is beautiful in its Scandinavian Design and their seated breakfast is wonderful.
The Chef’s Table: One highlight dining experience is the prefix Chef’s Table. The onboard sommelier (impressive!) and chef de cuisine come together to create a wine-paired menu. The dishes are focused on a region of cuisine and rotate every three days. *Reserve in advance.
Manfredi’s Italian Restaurant: This Italian restaurant on the Jupiter is a standout meal — their fresh plates of pasta are delicious. I loved coming here for some classic Italian dishes and their bistecca is a must. *Reserve in advance.
World Café: Open for all three meals, this is more of a buffet-style restaurant with everything from sushi to local dishes. It’s casual with open seating.
Aquavit Terrace: Just outside the world cafe, a good open terrace to eat and enjoy the views.
Wintergarden: During the afternoon, a wonderful afternoon tea is served here with three-tiered plates with small bites that are served with an extensive tea selection.
Mamsen’s: I adored coming here for Norwegian open-face sandwiches and waffles. A smaller menu, good for a snack or light lunch, has their grandmother’s recipes and Norwegian traditional dishes. You’ll want to get the waffles at least twice!
Pool Grill: Come here for a casual lunch (burgers and more) right by the pool.
Room Service: For those who want breakfast in bed or want to stay in, the room service menu has a bit of everything and is 24hours.
Alcohol/Drinks Onboard a Viking Ocean Cruise
Select wine and beers are complimentary and available at lunch and dinner only. Coffee and tea are always available as well.
I’d highly recommend upgrading to the Silver Spirits package which covers any drink (minus champagne), including premium wine by the glass, cocktails, house wines, beer, liquors, well drinks, and mixed drinks throughout the entire day.
Dress Code on Viking Ocean Cruises
This is one of the most commonly asked questions! What do I wear on a Viking Ocean Cruise?
While you’re out exploring, you’ll want comfortable shoes and tons of layers for the colder months. No need to pack an umbrellas as your stateroom has them!
For meals, you’ll find breakfast and lunch is more casual as people are headed out for the day or just returning.
For dinner, this is the only time there are dress codes at restaurants like The Chef’s Table, Manfredi’s, or the Restaurant. It states “elegant casual” and no jeans are asked. There are no “formal” nights but you’ll often find women in dresses or skirts with blouses and men in collared shirts (occasional jacket but rare).
The Staterooms Onboard Viking Ocean Cruises
Booked in a Deluxe Veranda Stateroom, I loved how spacious it felt. The rooms are minimally designed with Scandinavian touches. They’re well-appointed and have ample room to store your belongings. A few key features:
- King size or two twin bed option.
- Heated bathroom floors with standard amenities.
- Terrace with two chairs and a table.
- Wi-Fi included in room/throughout the ship.
- Mini-bar with select drinks/snacks replenished daily.
- Twice daily room cleaning.
Head here for more facts and a virtual tour of the room.
Activities and Entertainment Onboard Viking Ocean Cruises
There is always a little of something for everyone on Viking. Whether you want to spend a day relaxing or listening to an informative talk, I love how diverse the entertainment is. The entertainment options include:
- Spa (full wellness program, saunas, and thermal pools.
- A full gym.
- Daily Port Talks.
- Destination Performances from opera to dance performances.
- Movies and Ted Talks in the Theatre
- Explorer Dome Planetarium featuring a cinematic stargazing experience.
- Note: There are no casinos onboard.
Daily Excursions Onboard Viking Ocean Cruises
Every day on a Viking Ocean cruise, you’ll have a select amount of excursions to choose from. There is always a complimentary option that often is a cultural experience like a guided walking tour or a panoramic coach experience. There are paid options, and these excursions can range from a more in-depth culinary tour to a seaplane flight — each of these is curated by Viking themselves.
It is highly recommended that when the time comes to reserve in advance that you do so. The highlight tours often sell out in advance. On the itinerary pages of each cruise, it will share what tours are available and more details on levels of activity before you set sail.