The Scandinavian influence — clean lines, airy spaces, and blond wood — is strong throughout the 930-passenger Viking Sea. Launched in April 2016, this is the second ship from Viking Ocean Cruises, and Viking Sea is nearly identical to its elegant sister ship, Viking Star, with just a few minor tweaks in design. The ship also takes a lot of influence from the line's river cruise ships, with more inclusive fares than you typically find on ships in the price point.
What We Love
Cabins Have Thoughtful Touches: Heated bathroom floor to soothe weary feet after long days in port are a nice touch. Every cabin has a balcony and ample space to walk around. With plenty of drawers, everything has its place when unpacking for an extended voyage. An in-desk vanity is a nice touch, and the line added bedside outlets and USB ports on Viking Sea after customer feedback.
Stunning Art Collection: Work from established and up-and-coming Nordic artists, mostly Norwegian, line the walls throughout the ship. If you're taken with the work, you're in luck: When you board, you can log in to a mobile site and follow along on an audio tour.
Local Cuisine: From poolside paella on sea days in Spain to the fresh catch of the day in Bergen, Norway, the culinary team uses local ingredients to incorporate regional flavors on board. As the line adds ports of call, it’s adding new menus and dishes to The World Market, The Restaurant, and Manfredi’s, the line’s popular Italian eatery. A must for foodies? The Kitchen Table (the ship's only for-fee dining venue), which starts with a chef-guided market excursion and ends with a spectacular dinner.
Best Known For
Inclusive Pricing: Viking Ocean Cruises incorporates into the cruise fare what's usually charged à la carte on competing lines: alcoholic beverages, Wi-Fi, specialty restaurants, and some shore excursions.
LivNordic Spa: The blissful haven takes its cues straight from Scandinavia. Guests can partake in a Nordic bathing ritual — a tradition of saunas and cold baths — on a complimentary basis during their cruise.
The Explorers' Lounge: An ode to legendary polar explorer Roald Amundsen, this Deck 7 space is a traveler’s paradise where guests can curl up in front of the faux fireplace with a cozy blanket, nibble on open-faced shrimp sandwiches, or soak up the forward-facing views at the pièce de résistance: the observation area.
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Who It's Best For
Sophisticated World Travelers: With itineraries ranging from 10 to 29 days, Viking Sea is made for folks with some time to spare. Viking Sea's attention to chic design and great food appeals to a luxe-loving crowd who could do without the fuss and formality of some of the higher-end lines.
Don't Say We Didn't Warn You
Limited Sea Days: There's so much offered on board — lectures, two pools, outdoor deck games, multiple dining venues — that it's almost a pity that many of Viking Sea's days are spent in port.
It's Not for Families: Since the minimum age to sail is 18, you'll have to leave your kids and grandkids at home.
Kristen Boatright is the New York City-based senior video editor of ShermansCruise.com.
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Viking Sea at a Glance
- Line: Viking Ocean Cruises
- Number of Passengers: 930
- Ship Size: Medium
- Launch Date: 2016