The cruise looked great on paper. Set off from Marmaris in Turkey and sail around the Med. and back to Portsmouth. However, in some of the ports we had precious little time to soak up the sun and culture of the places at which we docked.This was particularly so in Ajaccio where we had 4 hours and Catagena where we had 5 hours. Even in Lisbon we only had 6 hours and this was curtailed because the courtesy buses stopped 3 hours before we left due to a Strike.
CABIN......The ship is definitely showing its age. Our cabin 201 vibrated quite badly ALL of the time whether we were at sea or in port. We spoke to others who were in the same block of cabins at the front of the ship on deck 6 and they all said the same. The vibration was not so bad in the middle of the ship so we would book a cabin midships if we booked again. Space wise the cabin was great with ample storage for clothes, etc. The other problem with the cabins 200-205 is that they have 2 way glass so that people using the promenade deck can see in the cabins. You are provided with net curtains but these reduce the light and view from your windows. At sunset you are also required to pull down a blind for navigational reasons...this cuts out all the light and you might as well have an inside cabin.
The system for disembarkation (getting off) was poor. Even when there were large crowds lining up to get off there were no staff managing the situation and there were a number of arguments when people pushed in. It was even more annoying when you finally got to the gangplank to find only 1 member of the staff booking people off the boat. There were 2 computer terminals and both should have been operated...THOMSON TAKE NOTE...
STAFF They were really good. Service was for the most part excellent.
ENTERTAINMENT... We only went to one show which was good. The rest of the time in the evenings we spent in the Heminways Bar. The entertainment was great. My special congratulations to Guy who sang and played the piano. I wish him well in his new career.
FOOD......It seems that Thomsons is cutting back on the quality/variety of the food. We sailed on the Majesty last year and the food was so much better then. In particular the bread rolls at breakfast were naff. There wasn't any marmalade at breakfast...but they did have peanut butter yuck.
The sailing through the Bay of Biscay was unpleasant. It was made worse when we got back to our cabin late from the Heminways Bar to find the electrics in our cabin were off. We had to grab some nightware and stagger (caused by the heavy seas) to another cabin 2 decks up. At least I know not to choose a cruise going there in future.