This 7 night cruise to the Fjords was booked through Victoria Travel via www.cruise.co.uk. Two adjoining balcony cabins - 8218 and 8220 - with provision(cot) for 9 month old baby. All aspects of the booking were handled in a pleasant, efficient and professional manner with every question and query dealt with promptly by "cruise consultant" Clare Guthrie. The deal included free parking at an off-site location. Cruise Parking Ltd provided excellent service - well worth the trek to find them - excellent directions supplied.
Booking in was a dream! Lots of pleasant, smiley people to help and add to the efficiency.
A quick meal in an albeit crowded (well what do you expect!) Windjammer restaurant and then off to the staterooms.
The staterooms were spotless, comfortable, adequately equipped and well cared for. Our steward, Xavier, introduced himself and our luggage started arriving. All perfect!
RC ships are probably not to everyone's taste but we love them. Big, bold statements, glitz, kitsch loads of room.
The mandatory safety drill was challenging - with hundreds of people squeezed into a lounge for ~20 minutes. What relevance this would have to a real emergency situation is debatable. I know this has to happen but there must be a better way. An ideal spreading and breeding ground for germs with so many passengers crammed in together.
Three particular aspects of this and other RC cruises were the food, the service and the staff.
Food - where ever we ate(we were "My Time" dining)- was again excellent - quality, quantity (of course!) and variety. Anyone who complains about cruise food should really get a life.
Service - across the ship was exemplary. So many service sector outlets should train their staff the way cruise staff are trained. Even if they are faking sincerity they are doing it really well!
Staff - see above + attention to detail, caring, helpful. Nothing too much trouble. We noticed this particularly with our 9 month grand-daughter.
If there was anything that I was slightly disappointed with was the standard of the theatre evening entertainment. The "big production shows" were bitty and struck me as "fillers" - competent but lacking the pzazz and costume that one usually sees. A club style comedian who I'm sure I saw on "The Comedians" (Granada 1970's) - very dated and predictable material. A French comedy juggler - yawn. The highlight was a group called Graffiti Classics - extremely talented and funny. An instant hit with the entire audience.
The ice show was superb - almost worth the cruise on its own! Spellbound and full of admiration for the performers and the production values.
Disembarkation was a cinch.
My daughter - first time cruiser - summed up the experience with "Why would want to do anything else - it's probably spoilt us for other holidays!"
Well done and thank you Adventure of the Seas!
Ports visited and not mentioned below: Alesund, Skjloden, Stavanger
Take the train or chill out in this tiny laid back beautiful village. Interesting (free) railway museum. Second mortgage advisable if you want to buy a jumper etc.