Booked this cruise for a shorter trip than normal but to see some ports that we would not normally visit.
Embarkation was easy and we were on-board in no time, throughout from the moment we boarded until we left the crew as always were very polite and helpful.
The smallest class of ship we had been on, but we still enjoyed all the facilities except the pool areas, due to the weather. Many did use the pool and areas though.
Helsinki was wet but we had a great day on Suomenlinna Island & Fortress, we got the shuttle to the town and then walked to the market and got the ferry across.
We did the ships two day tour package in St Petersburg, this was really good and our tour guide was excellent. On both days we had good lunches as part of the cost. They were four course meals with neat vodka, champagne and water. The second day at Catherine's palace we even had entertainment during the meal.
We visited the winter palace, hermitage, peter and pauls , the church of the split blood, catherine's palace and the peterhof gardens.
Entertainment was good, the Backbeat Beatles being the pick, they also had a unplanned appearance in the schooner bar until the early hours.
Food, throughout the food and service in the MDR and the windjammer was really good.
The condition of the ship could be described as tired in some areas, but as mentioned earlier the ship was clean. This did not stop us enjoying ourselves though.
As for what we had read in some earlier reviews, some people must live in a different world with some of the things they had complained about or cannot see beyond the peripherals of a few worn areas or they must have 6 star food all day everyday at home. (I think not)
We thoroughly enjoyed our cruise and port visits.