First time on Cunard, first cruise was on the Sea Princess some 35 years ago...things haven't changed as far as cruising goes. If not in port there is not a lot to do except bask in the sun by the pool, attend the show after dinner, old time dance in the ballroom or kick up your heels in the disco, have a quiet drink listening to the piano in the yacht club or play trivia games and karaoke in the pub..
QE is one very beautiful vessel, the decor is lavish. The evening entertainment in the theatre was outstanding!! Apparently the entertainers were all new. The dancers were fantabulous, their stamina in doing two shows each night is amazing. The costumes were beautiful, colourful and the designs very relevant to the dance being performed.
Food in the Britannia was great and serving portions just right for 3 course meals. Vegetarian meals were also on the menu. Even those on a diet were catered for. Steaks as requested were perfectly cooked . Duck and Lobster were delicious, we even had shrimp cocktail, souffles, snails.
Watching people eat in the Lido buffet was a sight, plates piled high, anybody would think it was their last meal. I now understand the joke by cruise staff referring to cruises as a food marathon. Food was constantly replenished, you could get pizza and pasta on demand, crepes, eggs and omelets at breakfast. Burgers, sausages,fries and onion rings at the pool. There were Indian,Japanese and other special food days throughout the cruise. Some people really need to look at themselves and their eating habits if they think their was insufficient food on QE.
All crew were nice, friendly and smiling and always around to help. Although the dinner waiter was a little too swift in clearing the table each night.
My cabin was nice but an interior, so pitch black without the lights on, I was rarely in it. The shower was small but the water pressure and temperature was very good. My only complaint was the hair dryer in the desk drawer, the cord doesn't stretch far enough to get to the other side of my head. having long hair it was a nightmare to get dry and styled. As always hotels and cruise ships just don't cater for women! But at least they supplied hair conditioner, something you don't get in hotels.
You do get the feeling of penny pinching when it comes to the add-ons. Gratuities, service charges and tips are added, added and added again. Ridiculous and so "American" Being an aussie we believe in a fair pay for a days work. Just pay your staff properly, price things accordingly and get rid of the add-ons, it so cheapens the experience. Being single traveller the cost was obscene, especially with regional pricing.
Having said that I would still definitely sail on the QE again but travel with someone next time.
This port is beautiful, unfortunately everyone was on strike because they were closing down schools so we didn't get to see a lot that day. We did the "little train" trip around the city which wasn't bad.
We just took the self guided tour with ipod We just wanted to get there and back without the hassles. "Princess" the bus tour guide was great giving a bit of history on the way there and back. The rug shop tour afterwards though hard sell was actually interesting and the rugs were truly beautiful all but 7 people disappeared when that part of the tour arrived.