Adonia Cruise Review by avoncastlecruisers: Adonia from Mumbai to Southampton
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Adonia from Mumbai to Southampton
We picked the ship up in Mumbai, as part of the Grand Asia Adventure, to sail back to Southampton for 23 nights stopping off at various ports along the way.
Firstly getting on the ship in Mumbai - is an experience in itself. Be prepared if you are thinking about doing this. For us on a private tour of India through Audley Travel, we sailed through the luggage inspection and cleared all port checks in 7 minutes, thank goodness we were travelling with Audley travel and not P&O. But those on a pre cruise India tour with P&O waited two hours just to get their luggage checked at the port entrance. Luggage was also stolen while on this tour, including someone's medication. No one was present at the port entrance from P&O and it appeared to be complete mayhem. There were no toilet facilities to use after they were locked once the women passengers started to use them and the men just stood up against the railings, no refreshments to be had and it was very hot at 30c plus. More One couple used the printed off luggage tags on their luggage and once sailed discovered their luggage had been put off the ship because these printed off tags were not on their three pieces of luggage. (Supposedly). This is in spite asking several times at the reception desk about the whereabouts of their luggage prior to sailing. The head purser was very rude, unhelpful and patronising and I was stunned listening to this story unfold over the course of the cruise. This couple had to borrow clothes from other passengers and P&O told them to claim from their travel insurance as that is what it is for and although a member of P&O staff had said he had put their luggage off prior to sailing P&O wanted nothing to do with it and accepted no responsibility whatsoever. No apology, nothing - very poor show. This couple did eventually get P&O to fly their luggage from Mumbai to Cairo and get the luggage from Cairo to the Suez Canal where the luggage eventually made it on board with the pilot - however for 8 days they had no luggage etc and this really spoiled their cruise. P&O's offered a small amount of money to spend in the ships shop. A moral to this story persist and keep asking where your luggage is and check the luggage tags and your luggage are present before you get on the ship.
As others have said the ship itself is tired (see cabin review A071) and really in need of a complete refurb / refit. Adonia when next to a Thompson ship looked like the poor relation from the outside, very rusty and uncared for. P&O / Carnival really do need to put in a capital expenditure to update her or sell her on. They charge top dollar to go on this ship and the ship itself is not top dollar. A real shame.
Most of the inside and outside public areas were cleaned well, but improvements could be made in the conservatory and to some of the carpet cleaning in general as stains could be seen.
Our cabin steward was one of the best we have ever had in 30+ cruises. Generally the staff seemed happy and smiling. We had been on Adonia last year on part of the South America Grand Adventure and many of the staff were still on the ship.Our waiter and his assistant were great, very personable and accommodating. Some of the food did need to be sent back, but in general it was hot, tasty and enjoyable. I think it depends where your table is in relation to the kitchens too.
Lots of curries daily in the conservatory, the food wasn't always the best in here. Soups and deserts were good as was the horlicks late at night.
Some of the entertainment was really good, but others were mediocre. different types of quizzes seemed to be on at the same time of night therefore in conflict with the other. We didn't bother with the shows as last year the dancers and singers were awful.
On long trips like this passengers tend to use the laundry a lot and there are not enough dryers to use or sometimes enough working irons / ironing boards. And needless to say there are often arguments in the laundry.
We went on this cruise as we could sail back to Southampton and overall enjoyed it. We generally pick cruises for the ports of call that are on offer. We would go on Adonia again, at least we are aware of some of her short falls. Less
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Cabin review: JBA071
The cabin itself was very clean, the cabin steward very helpful, polite, hard working and always smiling. Some of the cabin furniture / fabrics etc were indeed very tired and in need of a complete overhaul. The balcony was filthy, the furniture stained, the balcony flooring was positively disgusting and you would not want to walk on it without your shoes on. Really P&O need to do something about the condition of these things. The mattress was so uncomfortable, worst I've had on any ship on over 30+ cruises. I had to ask for several layers to go under the sheet so that I could sleep with some comfort.
Port and Shore Excursions
This was our second time at this port in 6 months, we enjoyed it last time and we enjoyed it this time too. We took the hop on hop off bus into Athens from close by the port (about a five minute walk from the port entrance) for 10 euros each into Athens and back stopping off at various places along the way. there are three routes to choose from. Great value and very easy. If someone didn't want to go into Athens Pireaus itself is very pleasant with a lovely marina area and lots of restaurants to choose from.
Good port facilities with some shops selling most souvenir type things and a very good duty free, cheaper than the ships.
We should have stopped here for just one day, but as the Egyptian ports were taken out we had an additional day in Haifa. The first day was a public holiday and all shops were shut, the port itself was closed, trains not running and very, very few buses. The Bahai Temple is amazing and certainly worthy of a tour but there are very few of these and if you've missed one in say English there may not be another that day, with no tours on Wednesdays. We also went to the Stella Maris monastery and went up by cable car.
The second day everything was open, transport operating normally. a very pleasant port of call with lots of history nearby to visit.
Port facilities very good with good shops etc. Shuttle from ship to port frequent and easy.
We took the ships shuttle to where it stops in Limassol / Lemesos. A very touristy area with lots and lots of souvenir shops, leather shops, restaurants and so on. There is a lovely walk to the sea front, but didn't see a beach where we were. A wonderful Greek Orthodox cathedral and a few other places of interest. Nothing much in the port itself. A very pleasant stop to enjoy and relax in the warm weather.
Although Lisbon is a lovely city it would be nice to stop somewhere other than Lisbon for a change - most cruises seem to include this as a port of call, again and again, when there are so many other places to stop.
Shuttle from port into the town centre. Although it is all walkable. Lots to see and do. A couple of shops at the port itself and loos.
I would advise any passenger arriving in this port to go on an organised excursion, whether this be with the ship or a company that can enter the port and pick you up from the ship. India is quite manic with lots of hustle and bustle. As a seasoned travellers generally we are happy to do our own thing but in India you do need something organised up front. There is a lot of poverty here, as there can be in much of India although Mumbai is a lot cleaner than many other cities.
There a lots of nice colonial architecture and some interesting history. The fish market is something else but an experience to see.
No shops or anything at the port and no shuttle from the ship to the port entrance.
Another port where I would suggest you take an excursion from the ship or organise something up front. If you take the ships shuttle to the port entrance the taxi people standing waiting to take you wherever you want to go need to be bartered with and they all tell you something different with each one shouting over the other. The town itself is some 20 minute drive from the port entrance. There is a hotel near the port entrance you can visit but that's it. so really an excursion is the most viable option.
There is a port shop which sells mens clothing and other supermarket type items.
Dubai would have been a preferable stop rather than Salalah.
We weren't meant to stop here, but as the Egyptian ports had been taken out Tunis was slipped in along with an additional day in Haifa. A really lovely surprise. There is a train station near to the port entrance that will take you into Tunis. You can also pick up taxi's at fixed rates to take you to Tunis, Carthage and Sidi Bou Said or a combination of. We took a taxi with two other passengers and shared the cost of 60 euros for the day and back back to the port. Although you don't get a huge amount of time in each of these places you certainly get a taster and we all thoroughly enjoyed our day. As did most passengers we spoke to. Would happily go back on another cruise.
The port facilities are very good, shops, toilets, restaurants / cafe - if you wanted to go no further than getting off the ship and having a walk around you can do so here.