Chose this cruise for the interesting ports of call and it certainly delivered on that front ! Visby and Klapeida were our favourites and of course St Petersburg continues to fascinate and amaze us. We loved all the ports and enjoyed all ... Read More
Chose this cruise for the interesting ports of call and it certainly delivered on that front ! Visby and Klapeida were our favourites and of course St Petersburg continues to fascinate and amaze us. We loved all the ports and enjoyed all our excursions except Gydnia which is a lovely place but the excursion we did was very rushed. We think the P and O excursions are actually good value, especially with loyalty discounts.
The Captain Neil Turnbull was great and kept us up to date every day with weather and funny little comments. He was seen around the ship and was always very friendly. The staff at all levels were exceptional and they made up for the minor irritants we experienced. The cabin was kept spotless by Mariam and thank you for her hard work and endless cheerfulness.
Now the food and entertainment this is where it all goes a bit downhill....Food on formal nights is just laughable really...I am not going to don my dressing up gear for 3rd rate so called Gala dinners, Marco Pierre White, did you really come up with that weird menu !? What has happened to yummy things like lobster ( not that dried up little morsel we get now ) and fillet steak, we ate at the supplementary restaurants on every formal night as there was nothing to tempt us on those 4 nights on the MDR menu. Main dining room breakfast is still awesome and delish. Lunch in MDR boring, boring, boring, we only went once but looked at the menu every day, no inspiration there. The other nights in MDR were passable, all the food was tasty enough ( soups always nice ) but nothing to write home about and reminded me of hotels trying to be posh in the 1970's akthough I must say the desserts were always very good. Buffet was okay the few times we used it for quick lunch but what has happened to pizza at the Lido ? We were looking forward to a slice of pizza for lunch some days and now you can only get pizza from room service ( extra charge surprise, surprise). Beach house we ate there 3 times and all meals were nice and worth the bit extra ( fajitas too spicy for me and it was not explained on menu that they were spicy hot so maybe that could be added P and O ?) Sindhu, we got a deal on second night for £11 extra per person and the service and food were pretty good. Glasshouse was a letdown on first try, we had fillet steaks and they were chewy..when we told waiter they just kind of shrugged it off...no offer of free dessert or anything to make up for it. We tried again, second time round we had the Neptunes feast...if you are hungry don't bother with this, we had literally 6 prawns, 6 scallops and a tiny crab to share ! This cost £16 extra...I don't mind a bit extra but come on P and O this was a rip off.(see picture)
Entertainment...who chooses the films..are they trying to send us into a depression..this is some of what we had to choose from...Murder on Orient Express ( quite good we watched that one but the sound was pretty fuzzy) then it all went downhill...other films we did not even bother to go to, Last days of Stalin, Churchill, The last Showman, some weird film about a woman in a mental asylum, Peter Rabbit, The railway children, the one film we did want to see, Red Sparrow, was cancelled because of a technical issue !!!! ??????
As for the in cabin offering, well I know we do not go on hols to watch telly but after a long tiring day ashore we do like the option of chilling in cabin with a good film..well, nothing there to be found...they do give you a printed TV guide but unless you can work out from one word what a film is about it is not much use. Mind you it did not matter much because the postage sized TV was so hard to see anyway. Poor Poor Poor...come on P and O get into this century when she goes for a re-fit. Would be nice to be able to see our bill on TV also please.
Theatre shows...and live music....dire and boring except for the comedian (Jeff someone, sorry forgot his last name but he was pretty good). Do we really need that jingoistic flag waving we will meet again show anymore ? Not very diverse is it P and O ? Sack all the choreographers and bring in some new ideas...the dancers were not bad but they had terrible material to deal with. Lots of of the shows we had seen on other ships. Quizzes were fun and well run. We were so bored in the evenings that it took the gloss off our cruise. We ended up reading in the cabin for most nights...not really worth dressing up for formal nights is it if the shows are awful and the food is under par.
I am sorry if I have moaned on a lot but those niggly things get under your skin after a while and if we had not been blessed with such lovely weather the cruise would have been bad for us. We were lucky as we got to be up on deck and in the pools a lot which was a lovely bonus.
Cabin was fine, not a bad size for an outside with a nice sized bathroom with a bath so that was nice. Sea was smooth all the way there and back, never even knew we were sailing the whole time ! We are booked on Aurora for next year with Mum and Dad and really really hope the re-fit will bring forth some upgrades. I would be tempted to cancel our next cruise but Mum and Dad are looking forward to the Canaries so we will try again and hope for better food and entertainment. Read Less