Just returned from a 3 night mini cruise departing Southampton and stopping at Zeebrugge and Le Havre.
Other than a Disney mini cruise this was our first experience for 12 years and a taster cruise for a longer 12 night cruise booken in August on Celebrity Solstice.
The weather was hot 23 - 26 degrees which was great although the embarkation lines were full of people fanning themselves whilst waiting in line. The embarkation was smooth and the wait was approximately 20 minutes which was fine for us.
We were sat at the riviera bar by 2.30 and getting ourselves settled in nicely.
I did think that as Oriana was adults only that it may have turned out to be booze cruise style experience. However despite there being some large groups of female birthday and hen parties the mini cruise did not suffer as a result.
We had an inside cabin on deck 10 which for 3 nights in the Channel/North Sea was more than adequate.
We ate in the orintal restaurant on 2 nights and 1 night in Ocean Grill, and in my opinion opting for the Ocean Grill experience despite the Â£17.95 cover charge was well justified. The menu selection in both the Peninsualr and the Oriental is the same and was good (but not great)
Breakfast we decided to opt for the Peninsular as I'm not a fan of "cattle class" buffet style venues, however when walking through it didn't seem too bad. The service at breakfast was a little slow, however we were in no rush so it didn't bother us.......however on debarkation day the waiters seemed to be "on speed" and rushed the food to us rather too hastily.
The experience has given us an insight into what we may expect on future longer cruises and we were definitly not disappointed and would reccoment to anybody who is uncertain about cruising.