There were 9 of us in total. 3 families altogether (6 adults, and 3 teenagers) decided to take our first cruise on the Oceana with P & O. After reading so many mixed reviews we were all a little apprehensive. But there was no need to be.
Embarkation was extremely straightforward. We arrived at Southampton early and was on the ship within 15 minutes. Our cabins were ready. All of which were extremely comfortable, and very clean. These all varied from Mini suites, to balconies and outside cabins. All of which were very satisfactory. Obviously the higher the grade the more comfortable they were. The same applied to disembarkation. This was also very straightforward.
We all selected Freedom Dinning. As there were so many of us we thought that this would be best option. And it was. We were able to book a table at 6.00 p.m. And then issued with a pager. This would then beep when the agreed time was booked. We never had to wait any longer that 10 minutes of a table. More
The food was absolutely outstanding. There was a variety of dishes, portions were plentiful, always hot and so delicious. The waiters were all so professional, helpful, friendly and and nothing was ever too much trouble for them. Especially Bertie and Sameer. They were always smiling. The same applies to the bar staff too.
We ate breakfast in the Plaza Restaurant, along with lunch, and afternoon snacks. There was a large choice of food, and this always delicious. Yes, on port days the buffet restaurant did have it's busy spells. But really there is no rush whilst you are on holiday.
We did have afternoon cakes and tea once in the Adriatic Restaurant. This was an experience. It sort of reminded of the Mad Hatters Tea party. I have never seen so many cakes in my life. You certainly would not go hungry on this ship. There is food everywhere.
We also ate at the Horizon Grill some lunch times. They do wicked fish & chips, along with hotdogs, burger & chips etc. All of which were great. Our teenage boys loved eating here.
The entertainment in the evening was brilliant. There were many types of shows in the Starlights and Footlights. Ranging from Comedians, to Magicians, dance shows etc. All of which were extremely professional.
The sailaway parties were very well organized by P & O too. They did a very good job.
We were always well informed of what was going on around the ship, day and night. This was by the Horizon Leaflet which was given to you every evening by the Cabin Steward.
The cabin Steward worked really hard in keeping all the rooms very tidy and clean. He particularly, had a hard task looking after 3 teenagers in one room.
There are many places to find a quiet drink in the day or evening, there are also lively places where you can let your hair down and have a dance.
Our teenage boys (3 in all, ages 13, 15 & 17), all had a great time. P & O do a great job in keeping them occupied. In fact, on sea days we hardly saw them.
There is plenty of sunbathing space. Unfortunately, you can't always get by the pools, but there is plenty of space around the ship.
We enjoyed the port days. P & O offer a free shuttle bus. This we made use of ever time to get to the capital of every country we visited.
We had the most amazing time. And we are all look forward to booking our next cruise.