We have been traveling with Viking now for 8 years; doing 5 river cruises and this cruise is our second ocean cruise with Viking. These ocean cruise ships are magnificent. The Viking Sky is new, built early 2017. These are not mega-ships, they are perfect size, accommodating about 900 passengers and roughly 400 crew. All staterooms are outside staterooms with walk-out verandas. The amenities on-board are first class. There are no casinos, game-rooms, these are not party boats. You feel so comfortable once you settle on-board. I can't say enough about the design and layout of these ships. But more important than the physical make-up of these ships is the people who work hard to make your stay so enjoyable. Everyone you encounter from your housekeepers, bartenders, waiters, security, hospitality staff, entertainers, operations crew, they all are so friendly and helpful. You feel at home.
While the overall cruise was outstanding, there was an unplanned change in the itinerary. Due to unforeseen bad weather conditions in the North Sea, the ship could not depart Oslo for Gothenburg and Aalborg as scheduled. The decision was made by the Captain to delay the departure from Oslo and cancel the Gothenburg and Aalborg visits. Since the vast majority of passengers had signed up for the Berlin tours that were included with the Germany visit, the cancellation of Gothenburg and Aalborg allowed the ship to make the German schedules.
When we did leave Oslo we were supposedly in a "lull" between a couple of nasty weather fronts. The trip that afternoon and evening across the North Sea had us fighting gale force winds (35 to 60kts) and up to 18ft seas. While it was a bit difficult walking around the ship, the stabilizer system on this ship seemed to dampen the rolling action pretty well. I did not see anyone openly sea sick but I'm sure a lot of folks were a bit "uncomfortable".
On the way out of Oslo the crew put together an impromptu massive brunch on the pool deck. This was not scheduled and it was obvious that the crew had worked all night to pull this off. There were ice sculptures, melon carvings and service stations set up all around the pool. Mimosas and Bloody Mary's were flowing. Everyone was having their share or more, I'm not sure everyone realized that in a few hours we would be in some nasty seas.
Resident pianist Andras from Budapest, very talented! Classical guitarist Ivan, extraordinary.