We began our vacation with a two day pre-cruise package in Copenhagen. An Azamara representative was waiting for us at the baggage claim area & escorted us to our bus for transportation to our hotel. Transfers went very well and the Marriott Hotel was nice & clean & located in a good area of the city. The hotel staff was accommodating as well.
Transfers to the ship went as planned with no problems.
This was actually our third time to cruise on one of these ships; we first sailed on the Renaissance R-2, then Oceania Insignia which are sister ships to the Azamara Journey, one can see that we like this type and size of ship. The Journey was a bit worn in places but we found the ship to be in good shape with a staff that was exceptionally better than most cruises we have been on. All the staff that we came in contact with were friendly and worked hard to accommodate us to the best of their ability. Captain Smith was especially personable.
Food quality was both good and bad. We found that most of the fish dishes were over cooked or just not tender for some reason. Steaks were excellent as well as all the breakfast foods (great omelets & waffles) but the big surprise was the deserts. On all the other cruises we have been on the deserts look great but have very little taste. The deserts on the Journey were really good - they looked good and tasted good as well.
Our attraction to this particular cruise was the three days in St. Petersburg. We loved it and it measured up to all that we had been told about. After weeks of looking at excursions and tours we finally decided on Alla Tours. We had a small group of four people for the tour and Alla furnished us with a guide, a driver and a Mercedes van. Our guide turned out to be a history professor at the University of St. Petersburg and she knew her subject from cover to cover. Her English was excellent and she was so accommodating. Our driver worked just as hard but he could not speak English. Price wise I think the Alla tour was well worth the money and we would highly recommend it to anyone. We were able to see so much and move around so quickly.