4 Bristol (Avonmouth) to Europe - British Isles & Western Cruise & Maritime Voyages Magellan Cruise Reviews

To set the scene, I've cruised once before on the Marco Polo eight years ago - and vowed never to do a cruise again. A converted Russian ice breaker does not a cruise ship make - but did do us well through a gale force storm. 8 years ... Read More
To set the scene, I've cruised once before on the Marco Polo eight years ago - and vowed never to do a cruise again. A converted Russian ice breaker does not a cruise ship make - but did do us well through a gale force storm. 8 years later myself and the wife wanted to see Iceland, due to her medical conditions we can't fly, so the Magellan was the way to go. Reading through the reviews there's a lot of common points raised, which I can now confirm or deny: THE CORRIDORS SMELL Yes, yes they do. Like a sulfur smell, I would take a wild guess at venting from the sewage system. But oh yes, there's a definite smell there. THE STAFF 99% of the staff are fantastic and always wanting to help. There's a couple that let the side down, but with a compliment of 400 crew - that's next to nothing. These people are teens/early twenties, doing 11 hour shifts on their feet - doing menial tasks - and stowed away in bunk beds on deck 4 at the back of the ship. It's a miracle they could raise a smile at all. Of particual impressive performance are the cabin stewards. Our own, Maguan was exceptional - and even learn't our routine so he could have our room ready whilst we were away. THE FOOD I can only discuss the Bistro. This is at a level of just above home cooked food. Impressively they cater with vegan and allergy sections. All sections have potential allergies marked against each meal. This is a Bistro in a cut-price Cruise Ship - I wasn't expecting Restaurant class food - but the choice was great and enjoyed a good feed four times a day. ENTERTAINMENT Yeah, this is great for the CMV target market of 60's and over. But for the slighter younger generation (in their 40's) - there's not a huge range to try out. We did go to the big shows a few times, but more for the laugh of how appalling it was than to enjoy it. The singers would never get past an X Factor audition, and their dancing skills are definitely limited by a rocking ship, but choreography had been well thought out. Give it 20 years and they're doing 80's themes - I'll probably be loving it. I however did not appreciate the sound engineer being so bored at his sound desk that he felt he could look at Ebay rather than do his job EXCURSIONS Yep - they're expensive compared to what you could arrange for yourself at a visitor centre. But we wanted a relaxing holiday and wanted everything ready to go without the hassle of personally booking a trip - and therefore also perhaps missing the departure deadline. ROOMS We went for the most expensive that we're still left available. Twin Premium Ocean View - that were an extra £1050 per person. It was fine, but not worth the huge hike in ticket price. SHIP She's getting on a bit, and the last refurb was some years ago. Fixtures and fittings are beginning to show some age - and carpets are no longer plush or have a uniform colour. But she's very clean, easy to navigate, and help stead fast in some rough weather heading towards the west of Iceland. CONCLUSION I've been converted, I will definitely go on a cruise again. CMV are not providing plush fancy cities on the sea cruises here, but they did provide a holiday I will treasure and that gave me no real reason to complain. Maybe except for stinky corridors. EMBARK/DISEMBARK Absolute rubbish. Disordered, no clear instructions and a rotten start and end to a great holiday. We we're due to be doing Faroe Islands and onto Iceland, but due to poor weather the Faroes were cancelled. As a result over the course of the holiday, I got 5 days of absolute relaxation, waited on, good food, great coffee - and Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
We sailed from Portbury in Bristol which was great as we only live 40 minutes away. The embarkation was very quick and smooth and the luggage was in out cabin within a few hours of us arriving. We were sailing to the Faroe Islands and then ... Read More
We sailed from Portbury in Bristol which was great as we only live 40 minutes away. The embarkation was very quick and smooth and the luggage was in out cabin within a few hours of us arriving. We were sailing to the Faroe Islands and then on to Iceland. Our itinerary was for a stop in the Faroe Islands, 3 stops over night in towns around Iceland and an over night stop in Reykjavik. Within a few hours of leaving Portbury we were informed that due to bad weather we would not be able to visit the Faroe Isles and instead of travelling up the Irish channel we would be travelling into the Atlantic on the West of Ireland, this would give us another day at sea. Ok nothing we can do about the weather so decided we would make the most of being on board. This was by far the roughest sail I have ever experienced, we were nearly tossed out of our beds on the second night. During this rough weather the boat really did show it’s age. The bar staff, serving staff, cabin staff entertainment crew were all fabulous and very hard working, always had a smile on their faces and very engaging with passengers. Cruise and maritime obviously look after their employees as they all had good things to say about the company. But this really does not go for the reception staff. They were the most unhelpful sour faced bunch I have ever had the displeasure to meet. I think there idea of customer care was you are the customer and they don’t care. We were eating in the Kensington restaurant, the service was excellent but the food was only mediocre and at times just warm. The Raffles buffet was good for lunch but far to busy and nowhere to sit, the Waldorf was also good but closed to early for our liking and found ourselves being rushed out of there on most occasions. The theatre entertainment was Ok but nothing like you would get on the other cruise liners. They did have a guest speaker there some days who was talking about his rock & roll heroes and this was very good. There was some entertainment in all of the bars but again just Ok. The ship has had a makeover in the last few years but it’s age is showing, it really does look very tired in places. There were water stained ceiling tiles in most bars and painted over rust everywhere around the deck areas, hence my heading mutton dressed as lamb. The decor is Ok but the seating is so uncomfortable and most of the furniture on the back of the boat was broken. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
This was a mixed bag. I would love to give five stars, I think I should and I will explain why in a moment. Having been on the Marco Polo and loved it I was worried that i might not enjoy the Magellan as much and, if I'm honest, I ... Read More
This was a mixed bag. I would love to give five stars, I think I should and I will explain why in a moment. Having been on the Marco Polo and loved it I was worried that i might not enjoy the Magellan as much and, if I'm honest, I still love the Marco Polo but there was nothing I disliked about the Magellan it's just different. A bigger vessel which means more walking, which I find difficult, but it didn't stop my enjoyment of being at sea. This was a multi generational, themed cruise. Two things I said I would never do but for the most part the children were a pleasure to be with. I saw no bad behaviour at all. Another plus for me was the number of different nationalities on board, so many interesting conversations. The downside came with the first excursion, to Paris. We knew we would have some free time but we were dropped in the most expensive, and probably busiest area for traffic for three hours. The majority stayed in the area as the traffic was horrendous with no notice at all taken of Pedestrian crossings. The coach did not pick us up where we were told we had to get on by standing in the middle of a dangerously busy road as the driver's side was facing the pavement. There were many more pluses I'm pleased to say but all on our coach agreed that the Paris trip was an ordeal and badly managed. The cabin an inner was very comfortable and our Steward very attentive. Entertainment was hit and miss, the Magellan singers and dancers were very enjoyable. There was an Irish folk trio on 2 nights with more or less the same songs the second time and a comedian we could only watch for ten minutes, it was dreadful, but that's just my opinion of course. The Cricketers and Nick Hancock were always approachable and as someone who knows nothing about cricket I still enjoyed their company. Now the reason I wanted to give 5 stars but can't as several people were genuinely scared in Paris either of being lost or knocked down. There was a raffle on behalf of the the Lord's Taveners with several prizes, the first being a Cruise donated by CMV. Never having won more than a bottle of wine in a raffle we had no expectations but, and I still can't believe this, we won the Cruise. Not a three night mini cruise that we thought it might be but an 11 night British Isles Discovery Cruise. To say we are thrilled is an understatement and we can't wait. If it had been a less chaotic Paris excursion I would have had nothing really to complain about but I really believe, given that families with young children were also with us, that not enough thought was given to the area where we could be left to our own devices. A too short time aboard the Magellan, Crew were brilliant, Magellan's own entertainers and the Cruise Director gave their all, and thank you CMV, we can't wait to come back. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
We had not been on a cruise before but needed a break an embarking from Bristol sounded inviting. Not very impressed at all. The food was possibly the worst we have ever encountered anywhere! We learned just before we went that this ... Read More
We had not been on a cruise before but needed a break an embarking from Bristol sounded inviting. Not very impressed at all. The food was possibly the worst we have ever encountered anywhere! We learned just before we went that this was to be a Carry on themed cruise - that consisted of several B listed or worse celebrities- some whose fathers had been famous - they weren’t![there was one exception Juliet Mills who was charming). The men clearly thought it was beneath them to dress for dinner. Their. behaviour in the dining room was loud and boorish. On the whole the staff were charming and our cabin was fine. I was unlucky enough along with several others to contact a chest infection and the medical staff were excellent. The entertainment was very good - we didn’t go to any of the Carry on shows but people who did said they were appalling as apparently was the comedian. Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
Magellan Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.0 3.7
Dining 4.0 3.6
Entertainment 3.0 3.2
Public Rooms 4.0 3.6
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.2
Family 1.0 3.2
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.5
Enrichment 3.0 3.0
Service 4.0 3.9
Value For Money 5.0 3.6

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