We are just back home from an Adriatic cruise on the Majesty.
The outbound journey was quite an ordeal as Thomson,s had sub contracted a plane from Sunwings, that duly broke down just before take off.
We were taken off board and waited for several hours before Thomson,s re directed a plane from Manchester, all in all an 8 hour delay, to be fair to the company they instantly provided vouchers to all customers to cover lunch.
On arrival at Corfu we were quickly taken to the ship as it was due to sail at 10pm, we boarded at 9.30pm and surprisingly our luggage was at our cabin before we were.
We were in a superior room on deck 7 which was quite spacious with plenty of storage space, but the beds were tiny. The cabin was spotlessly clean and remained so throughout the cruise thanks to the very efficient and unobtrusive cabin staff.
The safety drill was at 10.45pm so there was not even a chance for a drink following our long delay.
The first day was at sea and the weather was pretty poor with a storm about lunchtime. There was not much entertainment on the day at sea.
The Majesty is pretty well laid out and it is easy to find all the venues, however, it is not easy to get into them unless you are well ahead of the queue if the is anything worth watching.
We ate in the seven seas restaurant on most evenings, the food is very good and our waiters, Orly, Zizo and Andrew were very good and attentive, we had the same table for two on the four nights we dined there.
You can also have breakfast and lunch in the restaurant but this is a self service buffet affair.
Overall the food was of a very high standard.
The main shows are in the Jubilee lounge, this could be an effort to get into, but if you did get a seat there was very good waiter drinks service (as there was in all the venues).
The only show that was worth while was the guest UK comedian ( who even had my wife laughing her head off, which is a rarity ).
The quizzes in other bar areas were quite good fun, but again hard to get into unless you were there half an hour before it started.
Overall the entertainment was pretty poor, we both like all types of music, but the musicians were very mediocre. The two resident band took lounge music to the extreme, the kind that would make you get our of a lift and take the stairs. The resident pianist was very competent, but no matter what song he played and sang, it sounded like Billy Joel.
Anyway, the reason we chose this cruise was for the posts of call, which certainly lived up to expectations, it says a lot for an cruise when Venice (which is stunning ) is your least favourite stop.
Koper in Slovenia is stunning with very friendly people, if you go, the trip to the Krka waterfalls national park is must for a trip, a truly un spoilt nature reserve. As the ship did not leave until 11pm, we stayed off board for lunch, back to the ship for a change of clothes and then back out for dinner which was delicious and very reasonable.
Sibenik, again is a delight, we took a tour to the capital Ljubljana, this is a real gem, a beautiful capital and full of history. Our guide was very informative and the drive to the City was an education in itself. The guide explained that 60% of the country is covered in forest.
Regardless of how many times you visit, Venice is a wonderful sight, the sail in is well worth getting up for, we had been to Venice a few times before, and we were stuck there for 5 days following the ash cloud incident so we had already done all the tourist parts.
This time we just walked off the boat, took the people carrier metro which costs 1 Euro each way into the centre, we then bought a one day ticket for the water bus (16 Euro,s each ) and went to the Lido for lunch, this trip takes you up the Grand Canal and past all of the tourist sites, you can get on and off at your leisure and it will save you a fortune on an organised tour of the same places. Like all iconic cities, Venice is very expensive, the Lido is 20 minutes away on the water bus and a good lunch will cost half the price of mainland Venice.
Dubrovnik is stunning, it is worth the 10 Euros for a taxi to the walled city, you can also get a bus, it is quite an arduous half hour uphill walk and you will be exhausted by the time you get there if it is hot.
If you are interested in Dubrovnik and the ex Yugoslavia there is a fascinating photograph exhibition 3 streets up from the main church, the exhibition gives you a real insight into the events of 1991 onwards, a truly shocking war within our own time, it is quite harrowing and leaves you humbled.
The walled city is easy to walk around and not expensive for coffee and lunch.
I do like to stay in my bed in the morning, as opposed to my wife who is up at 6am come rain or shine, however, I did get up early on the day we went to Kotor which is up the southern most fjord in the world and really beautiful to see.
The town itself has a lovely old fortress which is easy to get around, but other than that there is not a lot to do, again the locals are very friendly.
After that, it was back to Corfu for the trip home. Unlike other cruises lines we have been with, Thomson,s actually time everyone's departure to match their flight home, which meant a far more relaxed last day. We have been on cruises where you are off the boat by 10am at the latest, regardless if you have an 11pm flight.
Corfu airport resembles a cattle market, so the less time you spend there the better, make sure you leave plenty of time to get through security.
Overall, this cruise had the best ports we have visited in Europe, as for the ship, like all Thomson ships, the staff are brilliant, but the Majesty looks a bit tired. We met many very loyal Thomson cruisers and even some of them were saying that they were surprised that the company had swapped the Destiny for the Majesty, she really needs a time in dry dock to sort out basic plumbing and water systems.
My only real negatives are the entertainment and the air conditioning in the cabin.