For those that have the energy there are virtually non-stop activities and things to do from 8 a.m. morning exercise sessions until after midnight. Even on sea days the ship never seemed crowded with room to spread out in the 10 bars, most of which open at noon, and six lounges. By the end of the cruise many passengers migrated to their favourite spots on a daily basis.
Daily outside activities included golf chipping, shuffleboard, deck quoits and short tennis and inside there's bingo, whist drives, non-hosted bridge, art classes and dance lessons from the resident teachers and light-hearted quizzes on a variety of topics. Informative 45-minute presentations set the scene for the various ports of call, and on my cruise the guest entertainers included former MP Edwina Currie and stars from the Strictly Come Dancing series. A selection of the latest films can be seen in Chaplin's Cinema.
Shore excursions, graded into three levels depending on the amount of walking or activity involved, erred on the leisurely side, with plenty of coach excursions, and I particularly enjoyed a canoe trip through the fjords. Trips were enlightening and well run but at around £40 quite pricey. In ports such as Bergen there were frequent complimentary shuttle buses, making it easy to get around under your own steam. A few passengers said they could not get on all the excursions they wanted so it's best to pre-book before embarkation or at the start of the cruise to avoid disappointment.
Evening entertainment gets underway at 6 p.m. with options including pianists tickling the ivories in the glass-roofed Tiffany Lounge and Crow's Nest and more lively music in the Lord's Tavern sports pub. My personal stand out feature was the Crow's Nest at the front of the Sun Deck, the perfect spot to watch the passing scenery at sunset over the reasonably priced, around £3.75, cocktail of the day. The nightly shows in the Theatre Royal, at 8.30 p.m. and 10.30 p.m., were excellent and always well supported and the resident Headliners Theatre Company staged varied and well-choreographed performances. The Pacific Lounge is a more intimate entertainment venue, generally hosting solo singers, and the Harlequins venue alternated between middle of the road disco music and ballroom dancing. A casino with slot machines and gaming tables opens at 7 p.m.
Oriana isn't the ship for all-night party animals and most of the bars thinned out well before midnight.