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Client Report: Viking Ocean’s Star in the Mediterranean

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Our agents at Willamette Intl Travel booked a cruise with Viking Ocean for long-time client Nancy T. Now Nancy’s come back from her amazing trip through the Mediterranean. Hear what she has to say about the voyage:

How was the Ship?

The Viking Star is absolutely stunning. It is very well thought out. Even though there were over 900 people on the ship, you never felt crowded. Our room was quite large and the bathroom was exceptional – full size shower and heated floor! The food was amazing. We loved the sauna and snow grotto room. Because we took an extensive excursion every day, we really didn’t have time to try out all the amenities on the ship. You could spend your entire trip onboard! There are so many beautiful places on the ship.

You did the pre-cruise extension, Two Nights in Istanbul, with Viking. How was the hotel?

Istanbul was beautiful. A side note to Viking—the Conrad hotel is not well placed for visitors. I know Viking will be getting a lot of feedback regarding that. It’s a beautiful hotel but not situated well for those wanting to explore Istanbul. Lots of business people and conferences being held there. It’s  a 30 – 40 minute walk to the nearest transit station and then another 20 minute ride to the old section. Taxis from the hotel to the old section are expensive because of where the hotel is placed and all the traffic.

(Note from Wittravel: The Conrad is a superb hotel, but indeed may be suitable for those travelers who wish to relax before their voyage. For those who want quicker access to the sights and smells of Istanbul, we can arrange nights in many excellent hotels closer to the city center. Call us for a one-on-one consultation.) 

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Tell us about the Excursions — how was Istanbul?

We did the guided tour provided by Viking on the first day – well thought out. The second day, we walked and took the light rail to see the Blue Mosque and Hagia Sophia. Also went to a small bazar. The next day was spent entirely at The Topkapi Palace which is huge. We were too tired to get to the Grand Bazaar or go to the recommended spice market. It was good we had done the smaller bazaar since it had spice stores there.

We did see some of the Syrian refugees. It broke our hearts. Turkey is trying hard to deal with them compassionately but their patience is running out. There are already over 2 million refugees and a million more are expected. I have a greater regard for Turkey and its place in our world.

We loved all the other, added-on excursions we did. I fell in love with Montenegro. Our excursion was 5 hours that day. Santorini was amazing – that was an 8-hour day. Athens was a 6-hour tour. Kusadasi ( Ephesus) was a 3.5-tour.

Final Thoughts?

It was an amazing, exciting trip. I highly recommend it to anyone wanting to explore that part of the world. Another side note – the majority of passengers on the ship had already on it for ten days before we got on it. They had combined this trip with another one which started in Barcelona.

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Viking Cruises launched its first ocean-going itinerary in May of this year. Ocean voyages have been fully booked up well into 2016! Viking’s world-renown cruise line has ranked highly on multiple travel lists, including Conde Nast Traveler’s Gold List, Travel + Leisure World’s List, Travel Weekly Readers’ Choice Awards, and National Geographic’s The 10 Best of Everything. The ocean cruises continue the Viking tradition of an all-inclusive experience, from all onboard meals, cultural enrichment, complimentary room service, to shore excursions, wifi, self-service laundry, wine, beer & soft drinks, and all port charges and government taxes.

The Viking Star is an all-veranda ship that accommodates up to 928 passengers. Combining Viking world-class standards with refreshing itineraries, the Viking Star is the ultimate luxury voyage that enhances each destination port. From the lavish 270-square-foot veranda to the premium Owner’s Suite spanning a whopping 1448 square feet, there’s something for everyone on the Star. She will be equipped with multiple restaurants, serene Wintergarden lanai, Piano Bar, Explorer’s Lounge, and a Nordic Spa. The Star will also have as its token jewel an Infinity Pool that is cantilevered over the ocean—the only one of its kind among cruise ships worldwide.

Call us for more information on Viking and their ocean and river itineraries. Contact 503-224-0180 or email info@wittravel.com.

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Viking Ocean Cruises

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Did you know that Viking Cruises is launching its first-ever Ocean itineraries? Yes!

Since 1997, the world-renown cruise line has provided unique sails on its 35 ships around Europe and Asia, top-ranking multiple years on Conde Nast Traveler’s Gold List, Travel + Leisure World’s List, Travel Weekly Readers’ Choice Awards, and National Geographic’s The 10 Best of Everything.

In May 2015, the ocean-going Viking Star will join the fleet and set sail on her maiden voyage. She is an all-veranda ship, accommodating only 928 passengers. We’ve already started booking clients on these new and exciting sailings!

Combining Viking world-class standards with refreshing itineraries, the Ocean Cruise is designed to be the ultimate luxury voyage that enhances each destination port. The Star will have several stateroom categories to choose from, able to suit any guest and each with its own veranda. From the lavish 270-square-foot veranda to the premium Owner’s Suite spanning a whopping 1448 square feet, there’s something for everyone. She will be equipped with multiple restaurants, serene Wintergarden lanai, Piano Bar, Explorer’s Lounge, and a Nordic Spa. The Star will also have as its token jewel an Infinity Pool, unique among cruise ships in that is cantilevered over the ocean.

The cruises will continue the Viking tradition of an all-inclusive experience, from all onboard meals, cultural enrichment, complimentary room service, to shore excursions, wifi, self-service laundry, wine, beer & soft drinks, and all port charges and government taxes.

Pre- and post-cruise land extensions are available on every itinerary as an addition.

Did you know? You can save money on your cruise if you pay via e-check. Ask Willamette Intl Travel how! Call now and take advantage of Early Booking 2-for-1 Fares for 2015 (expires August 31, 2013). Call us to find out more information at 800-821-0401 or email us at info@wittravel.com.

With Star, Viking will continue its practice of destination-focused itineraries. Here are the ones on the list for 2015. Please note that across the board, veranda categories (V) are sold out for that year.

15 Days Stockholm <-> Bergen, May 16, May 30, Jun 13, Jun 27, Jul 11, Jul 25

15 Days Bergen <–> Barcelona, May 2, Aug 8

13 Days Barcelona <–> Venice, Apr 20, Aug 22, Sep 3, Sep 15, Oct 15, Oct 27

10 Days Venice <–> Istanbul, Apr 11, Sep 27, Oct 6, Nov 8

22 Days Barcelona <–> Istanbul, Apr 11 (sold out), Sep 15, Oct 6

29 Days Stockholm <–> Barcelona, May 2 (only deluxe veranda), July 25

36 Days Istanbul <–> Bergen, April 11 (sold out)

50 Days Istanbul <–> Stockholm, April 11 (sold out)

Viking is also planning to debut into the Mississippi River market beginning 2015. The cruise will be onboard a new ship similar to their European longships, foregoing the traditional paddle wheeler.

Call Willamette Intl Travel to book your cruise and pre-/post-cruise travel arrangements.

Infinity Pool, artist's rendering, image provided by Viking Cruises

Infinity Pool, artist’s rendering, image provided by Viking Cruises

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