2 Baltimore Expedition Cruise Reviews

We just returned from a 7 night cruise in the Galapagos Islands aboard the Evolution. Although this cruise was completely different from most of the reviews I've read on the Cruise Critic website, it's certainly worth praise and ... Read More
We just returned from a 7 night cruise in the Galapagos Islands aboard the Evolution. Although this cruise was completely different from most of the reviews I've read on the Cruise Critic website, it's certainly worth praise and an exceptional review. Quasar Expeditions hosted the trip aboard our 32 passenger yacht and nothing could have been better! Each day was filled with a friendly wake up call to a delicious and hardy breakfast before boarding the panga (zodiac) for an early morning hike. We repositioned before lunch, or had another panga ride to our snorkel spot for the day, were greeted by the amazing staff of the Evolution with snacks in the jacuzzi after our underwater adventure, shared another amazing meal at lunch (including desert every day) then off to another exciting little island for our late afternoon hike. Early evening began with our Naturalist's briefing and review of our day's adventures including a recap of the wildlife and geological formations we visited during the day. The guides reinforced our knowledge and experiences of the day with a slide show, answered all our questions, and reviewed our itinerary for the following day. Dinner and wine (and another great desert) rounded out the day, or we finished up in the lounge with an after-dinner drink and discussion. This is a cruise for those who are active, interested in nature, and ready to immerse themselves in the Galapagos. The open air design of the Evolution is perfect to explore the islands, and the small size of the yacht makes each landing and snorkel experience feel as though you are the only people in the world. The islands are so isolated and special, I can't imagine sharing them with a huge group of people. The appointments aboard the Evolution are those of a first-class hotel, so while spending your days on lava fields and swimming with the sea turtles or sharks, you return to luxury and pampering by the staff. It was absolutely amazing! A note about our guides. Rafael Pesantes and Samuel Quiroz, both Level III Naturalist Guides, were fantastic! Rafa's love of the islands and the wildlife was contagious as he described the flight or breeding patterns of the blue footed boobies, or explained the evolutionary adaptations of the marine iguana. Sam guided up step by step through the volcanic creation and growth of the islands. They patiently answered all our questions in brief or in detail (not easy to do with a group of geneticists on board). More importantly, we had such fun learning and exploring and each day was filled with more wonders than the day before. Quasar has done it again by providing an incredible yacht, coupled with outstanding staff, and the best Naturalist guides in the islands!   Read Less
Sail Date March 2014
We were part of a group of eight first time cruisers on Royal Caribbean, and all agreed that it would not be our last. We started with a great time in Baltimore capped off with a wonderful pre-cruise dinner at G&M Seafood ... Read More
We were part of a group of eight first time cruisers on Royal Caribbean, and all agreed that it would not be our last. We started with a great time in Baltimore capped off with a wonderful pre-cruise dinner at G&M Seafood Restaurant. There were a total of 12 Cruise Critics at the dinner where we all had top notched Maryland crab cakes. We booked one night before and one night after the cruise at Comfort Inn Airport. Hotel was just ok, but the price was reasonable which included a full breakfast and a shuttle to the cruise terminal. Arrived at the cruise terminal at 11:00 am and was on-board having lunch around 11:45 am. Boarding and departing the ship in Baltimore was the easiest of any cruise terminal we have experienced. Weather for our cruise was great except for Boston where we had rain and fog. Bar Harbor had a record high of 90 deg. while we were there. We enjoyed all of the ports, but Halifax was our favorite. In Halifax we had booked a private tour with Your Cabs. Our driver was Jonathon Duru who has to the best tour guide we have ever booked. His knowledge of the history of Halifax, the Titanic and Peggy's Cove was outstanding. As for the Enchantment, Like I have stated, this was our first cruise with RCI and we were very pleased. When comparing the Enchantment to most of the Carnival ships that we have sailed with, I would have to say that RCI's style is more to our liking. Food was as good or better and entertainment was comparable. Our stateroom was smaller than on Carnival but had much more storage available. Now for the negative. I'm sure that I am not the first to observe this, but RCI must do something about the overcrowding of the public rooms such as the theater and the Market Place buffet. I understand that this was caused by the addition of staterooms during the last refit. I would hope that RCI will address this during Enchantment's next refit. Read Less
Sail Date October 2011

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