This was an all inclusive cruise with a difference in that we wanted to fly to a different country at conclusion rather than back home. This package was arranged by the cruise operator to include transfers and hotels and worked perfectly. The hotels were of top quality and included a day room in Hong Kong to accommodate a six hour wait from disembarkation to flight. Embarkation / dis embarkation were quick and painless.
Ship and Crew.
A small ship with a superb crew. It never ceased to amaze us how the crew always smiled, were obviously very happy working together and never displayed anything other than excellent attitude throughout the cruise at all levels and at every hour of the day or night. It starts at the top of course and the Captain and his officers lead by example. They were frequently seen and always with plenty of time to chat, the Captain even joining the stir fry line More
Very high standard especially in the specialty restaurants. The afternoon 'high teas' were a delight. The all inclusive wine was of a very high standard and much appreciated.
Small ship and therefore smallish cabin, 1c. However perfectly adequate, clean and extremely and discreetly maintained by an excellent cabin crew.
Excellent. I don't know where Rus and Alexander get their energy. A superb programme of events and shows embracing everything from bead threading to Broadway. The 'imported acts' also first class. An extra in Vietnam were local dance bands and dancers performing on the pool deck at themed buffets, they were truly superb. This, for me was an indication of the lengths Azamara and the entertainments team were prepared to go to ensure a memorable cruise. Some complaints arose from the 'enrichment lecture' on the opium wars in SE Asia, I don't think the lecturer likes the British!
Very good. Vietnam is perhaps not the place to plan your own excursions and those provided were good. Hanoi is a long trip from the port but generally considered worth it. The on board presentations for excursions and destinations were a trifle dis jointed and did require perseverance, lots of information on taxis. Less
Not quite as secure as Singapore but still a great fun city with the usual precautions. Pat Pong is a fun market but the 'girlie bars' best avoided unless you know what you are in for and are in a group. If you want a good massage reasonably priced then the shuttle bus crew can direct you.
Once again Azamara will get closer to Hanoi and in the process will sail through Halong Bay which is spectacular. Further exploration of the bay by local boat is a must, many opportunities to do this independantyly of the excursions and much cheaper. Hanoi is a long bus ride 3.5 hrs, we didn't bother, those that did said it was worth while.
A very westernised city, being a small boat Azamara can berth almost in the center. Take the shuttle bus into the city, 10 minutes, and walk around. Cu Chi Tunnels, interesting day out, worth the excursion