2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
We chose this Baltic cruise for our Golden Wedding treat principally because it spent 3 days in St Petersburg, which I've never visited, and was a small ship. We flew to Copenhagen, a city we've both visited before, and spent the ... Read More
We chose this Baltic cruise for our Golden Wedding treat principally because it spent 3 days in St Petersburg, which I've never visited, and was a small ship. We flew to Copenhagen, a city we've both visited before, and spent the night there, giving us time to see several sights before our taxi arrived to take us to the port (via a delightful unscheduled whistle-stop tour of Copenhagen!) Embarkation was perfectly smooth, and we had a penthouse suite, on the 8th floor, which, though very expensive, was gorgeous - spacious, tasteful, soothing colours blending with the sea and sky outside, a lovely verandah, and extremely comfortable. The food throughout the trip was quite outstanding - we dined most evenings in the Grand Dining Room, where the menu (including at least 2 vegetarian options per course) changed each day, and every dish was beautifully cooked and prepared. We had breakfast on most days at the Terrace Cafe, which had a huge variety of delicious food, including masses of fresh fruit. Occasionally we had a meal in our room, elegantly served by our butler. Everything was kept spotlessly clean, and all the staff were unfailingly pleasant and polite. I was impressed with the attention to safety, and the fact that we had well-organised and thorough evacuation drill before we left Copenhagen. This also gave the comforting impression that other important and unseen matters were treated with similar care. I read comments about the Nautica being 'tired' and 'dated'. Perhaps. But it's like a grand hotel which has been very luxuriously fitted out in the first instance to high standards of craftsmanship and old-fashioned comfort, and scrupulously maintained thereafter. (OK - we're British. Perhaps we view things differently!) The public rooms were lovely - I particularly liked the sumptuously-furnished, panelled library with its splendid selection of interesting books; and we loved sitting in the lounge at the top of the grand staircase to listen to the brilliant string quartet each evening - their enormous repertoire wasn't repeated once during all the time we were on board, and they were stunningly good. In fairness, one disadvantage of a small ship is the pathetic size of the swimming pool! But there was plenty of room for sunbathers, even if enthusiastic swimmers might be disappointed. (I was, a little bit. But I coped ... ) As first-time cruisers we were very pleasantly surprised at the lack of queues. We never had to wait for more than a few moments for anything (apart from final disembarkation, where the ship was at the mercy of the customs authorities) and, amazingly, you could sometimes go on deck for a spot of sunset-viewing and find no-one else there - just like in the advertisements of cruises! This uncluttered ambiance was very unexpected - and that, despite the fact that the ship was absolutely booked up. The only real criticism I have is of the excursions, which were very, very expensive. In St Petersburg we took instead a 3-day independent Russian excursion for a small group, which was absolutely outstanding, and far better than anything Oceania had to offer, at half the price. We did in fact take some Oceania excursions because we had a deal that included free ones. Most were rather good, and included interesting insights into local life, but the Stockholm one was pretty pathetic (frankly I am NOT interested in having American-owned hotels pointed out to me at the expense of learning more about life in Sweden, and I'm not sure how thrilling even the Americans on the trip found it!). The onboard enrichment lectures were also variable in quality - we had a wonderful and fascinating one on amber, would you believe, and a couple of rather muddled ones on Stockholm and St Petersburg (historic dates, please, people, and clearer royal genealogies - it does so help to put things in context), so we stopped going to them after that, and relied on our guide books. My husband looked in on a couple of the evening entertainments, but reported raucous, rather flat singing, so we left this to those who enjoy that sort of thing (of which, I think, there were quite a few, so fair do's.) We didn't patronise the casino or card rooms; and deck shuffleboard didn't speak as an activity, but hey, that's fine. The few children on board seemed perfectly happy, but this is certainly not an ideal cruise for the average teenager (tho' the non-average one might like it!) It was, however, perfect for a well-travelled couple in their 70s who like comfort, good food, cleanliness, quiet, elegant surroundings - and meeting others who are similarly appreciative. Yes, it's very expensive; and I have nothing to compare it with in my experience. But as a treat it was really fabulous, even given the small caveats above, and it's a memory I shall treasure. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
It was a last minute deal for us and had a an itinerary that ticked quite a few boxes. The itinerary was great, Baltic, followed by around the UK. We had sailed the Regatta so expected the same on the Nautica and hoped their cuisine had ... Read More
It was a last minute deal for us and had a an itinerary that ticked quite a few boxes. The itinerary was great, Baltic, followed by around the UK. We had sailed the Regatta so expected the same on the Nautica and hoped their cuisine had expanded to include simple, tasty dishes. The meals were far too rich for us and service was very spasmodic. Getting a simple meal was almost impossible. We managed to get a few on the first leg after a personal interview with the Manager but he left after that leg and the new Manager did not seem to care and some of the staff were disdainful and rude towards the end of the journey. They ask for feedback but do not seem to enjoy working with the clients to achieve a positive outcome. It will be interesting to see if head office gives us any feedback on the final comments form! We have booked another for next year and will try to clarify what plain wholesome food means before sailing. Again it has been chosen for the itinerary and that we are able to couple it with a river cruise, which helps justify the airfare and air times from Australia. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
Oceania is well-known as the upper premium class cruise line with excellent gourmet food. indeed, the appearance of the buffet restaurant could compete with fine dining serviced restaurants on other vessels. The food was really extremely ... Read More
Oceania is well-known as the upper premium class cruise line with excellent gourmet food. indeed, the appearance of the buffet restaurant could compete with fine dining serviced restaurants on other vessels. The food was really extremely "dangerous" with a high extra-weight-potential. You could tell just by looking at the ingedients: lemon sole, finest filet, mussels, prawns. The passenger mix was too mono-national for me. The majority US citizens, a few Aussies, very few europeans. Since I'm in my fifties I felt way too young for this kind of ship, I estimate the average age of passengers at 73+. The service was excellent, the cabin steward knew our complicated family name in a second and always addressed us by our name when we met her on the corridor. When you put down the cutlery in the buffet or serviced restaurant it took only seconds and the dish was taken away, just amazing! I liked the type of a smaller vessel a lot. Everything seemed to be so familiar, then I found out: have been sailing on Ocean Princess, one of the other Renaissance Class ships before! The interior was very classic, just like an old fashioned country style from England. We had booked a few shore excurisons for Saint Petersburg, Russia, to avoid buying this very expensive visa. All three tours were very interesting and the local tour guides were excellent, explained everything with great enthousiasm. Overall, a high class product with fantastic cuisine, very much recommended for the elderly passenger who prefers a quieter surrounding. Since Nautica carries only 680 passengers or so and 400 crew members it has also a superduper pax-crew-ratio. Finally: the smaller the vessel the more unique are the itineraries, Nautica and her sister ships go to places bigger ships have no access to. If you expect a quiet and relaxing classic cruise with excellent food, don't expect too much of entertainment and "WOW-features", then go for it! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2017
for the Baltic countries cruise was great food was good ship is old but very clean not much to do onboard when at sea cabins r a bit smallcrew was very helpful entertainment could be improved cast of crew were very good other acts were so ... Read More
for the Baltic countries cruise was great food was good ship is old but very clean not much to do onboard when at sea cabins r a bit smallcrew was very helpful entertainment could be improved cast of crew were very good other acts were so so no where to get a bit to eat after buffet closes at 10 pm should add some thing wifi was free but hardly worked in cabins u were allowed to bring booze aboard from any port which is a big plus on board lectures were very good an informative wait staff were great cabin stewards were the greatest specialty reastrunts were awesome service was too could change menu more mostly same nite after nite all an all cruise was great we lucked out weather wise in 70s every day one day of rain week beforehad rain every day so luck of the draw Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
WE chose the Baltic cruise because we liked the itinerary and wanted to try Oceania Cruiseline. We like the smaller ships and this fit the need. The ship itself is well maintained and the common areas are nice. I am a blackjack player so ... Read More
WE chose the Baltic cruise because we liked the itinerary and wanted to try Oceania Cruiseline. We like the smaller ships and this fit the need. The ship itself is well maintained and the common areas are nice. I am a blackjack player so I did enjoy the casino on this ship. Our cabin was nice we were on the concierge Veranda which gave us 4 nights in the speciality restaurants, there was a bottle of champagne waiting in our room and we could access our room earlier than others. The food was exceptional in the Speciality restaurants however we were disappointed in the Dining Room menus and the buffets. They had some featured nights of different cultures, one being Indian Food which is definitely not one of my favorites. The service was very slow in the main dining rooms, you could easily spend 2 hours just getting through dinner. We have sailed on Azamara and Seabourn and this ship definitely did not measure up to them. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2017
From Capt Max to the lowliest deckhand , the staff were friendly, obliging, and smiling throughout the entire cruise. Capt max did an amazing job, mixing with the guests and sharing his time without hesitation. The ship was spotless and ... Read More
From Capt Max to the lowliest deckhand , the staff were friendly, obliging, and smiling throughout the entire cruise. Capt max did an amazing job, mixing with the guests and sharing his time without hesitation. The ship was spotless and the attention to detail in all aspects of cruise management was exemplary. The ship was the perfect size for our first cruise , making it possible for the crew to get to know and remember everyone's names and vice versa. The onboard facilities were more than adequate for the number of passengers and provided a good blend of places to eat, drink and play for everyone. It was unfortunate that we missed our first stop because of strong currents in the Dardenelles after leaving Copenhagen but this was beyond anyone's control. We encountered a problem on trying to enter Murmansk because the Russian Navy was conducting an exercise but Capt Max , being Russian and exnavy himself was able to exert enough influence to get us a 20 min window that allowed us to enter Russia and carry out immigration formalities that we couldn't have done at any of the other stops in Russia. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
Oceania performed as expected. The food was amazing, the ports of call were wonderful and the entertainment was very good. We thought Cory "from the bridge" did a wonderful job as cruise director. Captain Max was very ... Read More
Oceania performed as expected. The food was amazing, the ports of call were wonderful and the entertainment was very good. We thought Cory "from the bridge" did a wonderful job as cruise director. Captain Max was very approachable and informative. Travel above the Arctic Circle was memorable and provided numerous photo opportunities. We were on the Concierge floor and cabin service was terrific. The ship was very smooth for us. We tried all the dining experiences and were very satisfied at each location. The entertainment staff made the competitions for Big O points fun events. I think they had fun with the passengers and made us all feel welcome. The show band was terrific and provided support to the "come aboard" entertainers. I t is hard to keep seasoned travelers entertained but Cory and the entertainment team did a terrific job. We had a wonderful time despite a poor trivia team result. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
We have cruised twice before on Oceania: once on Marina and once before on Nautica. While the itinerary was great, the food service was lacking. We enjoyed the ports of call and took a number of ship sponsored tours and found them all to ... Read More
We have cruised twice before on Oceania: once on Marina and once before on Nautica. While the itinerary was great, the food service was lacking. We enjoyed the ports of call and took a number of ship sponsored tours and found them all to be of good quality. The ship and its cabins are nice and the personnel all provided great service. But we felt that the service and quality of the dining experience was poor. To being, 1) the push for all to share tables becomes tedious: we are not at summer camp where we have to make new friends. 2) The itinerary took us to places where the outdoor temperatures were not conducive to outdoor dining, so the Terrace Cafe indoor seating was always packed. 3) The majority of times we went to the Terrace Cafe, we couldn't find a table (even if you were willing to share). When we complained, we were told they loose over a 100 seats due to the cold weather. 4) The Grand Dining room was our answer but they staffing has been greatly reduced and the service is slow and many times what you ordered wasn't what got delivered. 5) It seemed like much of the wait staff was new. All of the wait staff was very pleasant just overwhelmed. The pluses for Oceania are the free water and soft drinks and the lack of cross selling. But with the pricing difference, one needs to do more price comparisons. We are not as sold on Oceania as we had been. Also, disembarkation was rushed. We had to be out of our cabins by 8:00 am and off the ship by 9:00 am. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2017
We decided to take the trip on the Nautica vs. other cruise lines visiting Norway because it included a trip over the top of Norway into the Barents Sea and the White Sea, with port stops in Murmansk, Arkhangelsk and the Solovetsky Islands ... Read More
We decided to take the trip on the Nautica vs. other cruise lines visiting Norway because it included a trip over the top of Norway into the Barents Sea and the White Sea, with port stops in Murmansk, Arkhangelsk and the Solovetsky Islands in Russia. We stayed overnight in Copenhagen the night before embarkation. It was cool and raining the day we arrived, but bright and sunny on our departure. We stayed in the Square hotel near Tivoli Gardens. That area in Copenhagen is very touristy and expensive. The trip started with a very easy embarkation in the ship's lounge in Copenhagen, since the ship didn't dock at a cruise terminal but instead was at the Langelinie Pier. We missed our first stop in Alesund due to high winds, but made all of our other ports (Trondheim, Hammerfest, Murmansk, Solovetsky Islands, Archangel, Hannigsvag and North Cape, Kristiansand, Hellesylt and Geiranger fjord, Bergen, Amsterdam, Brugges). Hellesylt and the Geiranger fjord were striking in their native beauty, and Begen, Amsterdam and Brugges were all wonderful cities to visit. The Nautica is a small and inviting ship. The ship's ambiance is quiet elegant, with a lot of dark wood in the public areas. This was our second time on board in 7 months, and we felt like we were 'back home'. The small size of the ship and the length of the journey (20 days) makes it easy to meet fellow passengers. Dining on board generally is excellent. We found the Polo Grill inconsistent in its service and food quality - twice it was excellent, twice disappointing. In contrast, we found Toscana consistently outstanding. The service onboard is truly excellent. Because it's a small ship, there is not a lot of nightlife. The casino was small and inactive. There is only 1 production nightly at 9:30. We look forward to returning to the Nautica or one of the other Oceania ships in the future. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
The itinerary was of great interest to us and we were not disappointed. The captain had to make some last minute changes to the order of ports visited and duration of stay due to events beyond his control, his decisions were well made and ... Read More
The itinerary was of great interest to us and we were not disappointed. The captain had to make some last minute changes to the order of ports visited and duration of stay due to events beyond his control, his decisions were well made and maximized passenger experiences. Bravo! This was our first time in a stern cabin ..... great views and wonderful balcony space! Staff are exemplary! Medical staff went over and above when a medical condition arose so recovery was quick and interfered very little with our holiday. Staff in the Terrace cafe, dining room and specialty restaurants are knowledgeable and attentive. The quality of food confirmed Oceania's reputation as having "the best food at sea" ...... now to loose that excess weight ! Embarkation, disembarkation and tour departures were well managed and efficient ...... no "mob scenes" or races! The Oceania escorts on shore excursions did a great job especially "George the jeweler" who went over and above to assist a couple with some mobility issues navigate a 3 story museum tour. The only negative was one particular tour bus had VERY narrow seats set extremely close to one another leaving inadequate leg room for anyone 6 feet tall or more. Our experience on this bus was compounded by the physically disabled passenger seated in front of us reclining his seat after being asked to stop repeatedly thrusting his considerable weight against his seat back which re-injured my husbands knee and has limited his walking tolerance even now...... however, we recognize that Oceania cannot be held responsible for passenger behavior and we did see numerous incidents of passenger kindness and consideration. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
The reasons we booked this cruise was because it was Oceania, the itinerary (going above the Artic Circle), no photographers, few children and no up-selling. We have cruised with Oceania quite a few times and enjoy the size of the ships, ... Read More
The reasons we booked this cruise was because it was Oceania, the itinerary (going above the Artic Circle), no photographers, few children and no up-selling. We have cruised with Oceania quite a few times and enjoy the size of the ships, the atmosphere and the service. We did arrive in Copenhagen a day early which gave us time to help some with the jet lag and to explore the city some. We selected the airport transfer to the hotel and hotel to ship. Both of which worked well. This embarkation went quickly but with the area for the health questionnaire, before boarding the ship on the dock with limited cover and a bit of rain, wasn't a great way to start. However, as soon as we were on board the rest of the embarkation process went very smoothly. When we booked the cruise, we requested a penthouse cabin, but ended up deep on the wait list, finally made it to number three but ended up in a concierge veranda cabin. We had been in that cabin level before and understood the few limitations of the cabin, i.e. the small bathroom, etc. We were able to get in to the cabin about 20 minutes before the advertised time. Our luggage was at our cabin when we arrived. Our cabin steward came and introduced himself and asked if we needed anything and the two things we requested were taken care of quickly. We had excellent cabin service throughout the cruise. The cabin was always neat and clean but, after a few days in the cabin we did notice that the was some general wear and tear that we hadn't noticed on other Oceania ships. The service we received in all the dining venues was fantastic. It seemed more personalized than on other cruises but this might be since it was a 20 day cruise. The food was very good and comparable to all the Oceania cruises we have taken. The specialty restaurants excelled as they have in the past. The cruise did experience two problems, neither could be blamed on Oceania, the ship or the crew. One was bad weather that caused the Captain to slow the ship and as a result missed our first port. The second was that the Russian Navy held the ship out of Murmansk for about 12 hours while they conducted a 'naval exercise'. One highlight of the cruise was that Captain Maksym Melnikov was excellent. He always kept us updated of our status with the two minor problems we encountered. Additionally, on sea days with his noon time report of weather and position, he would also add a brief talk on subjects including, the ships' stabilizers, the northern lights, water purification on the ship, along with other interesting subjects. He was the most informative Captain we've had on any cruise. We do not participate in most of the entertainment in the lounge in the evening or the daytime activities throughout the ship. We spend port days on tours and in the towns/cities we are visiting and on sea days in the library or Horizon Lounge reading and relaxing. We didn't participate in any of the activities to get 'Big O' points. We thought the itinerary/port selection was very good. We were able to visit larger cities along with some very remote ports. The tours were a bit pricey, but we had selected one tour in each of the ports we visited except for Bergen. Most of the tours were very good, with a couple that were a pleasant surprise and one that was a bit disappointing. The ones that were very interesting included the tour in Murmansk that went through the first nuclear ice breaker. The ship has been restored to the level of a museum. There is still more restoration underway, but visitors get to visit all areas of the ship from the reactor to the bridge. The other tour of note was in Arkangelsk, Russia, entitled "A Tour in the Wood". Visitors are taken to an outdoor museum of an old village/town which included many buildings that visitors could enter. The village guide took us through, explaining history, life at the time and even showed and described construction of the buildings. The one disappointing tour was one that had a relatively young, inexperienced guide that I felt could have spent time on culture and history of the area. The other Excursions in Norway, Russia, The Netherlands were all very good. In Belgium we selected the 'Bruges on your own' since we have been there multiple times. To sum this cruise up we had a great time and have also booked a back to back cruise next year. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2016
Great venues and wonderful food. Definitely higher end as far as cost, but you get what you pay for... Liquor prices and packages are high and the sommelier actually advised against the wine package. I had done some research on the wines ... Read More
Great venues and wonderful food. Definitely higher end as far as cost, but you get what you pay for... Liquor prices and packages are high and the sommelier actually advised against the wine package. I had done some research on the wines offered and agreed - $9 wines with mediocre ratings for $47.50 a bottle. We also found that there was no problem buying a bottle of wine or liquor in port and bringing it to your room. We splurged and got a penthouse suite. It was considerably larger than a regular suite but I didn't find their "butler" service to be much more than a regular concierge. The size was, however, worth it. We highly advise to build in extra days in the first and last locations to get your full value on the trip. If you book those through Oceania, you get all extra travel and connections covered which is very nice. Read Less
11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2016
We like small ships and river cruises so Oceania was a preference over larger ships to see these locations. Verandah stateroom was roomy enough although bathroom and shower were small (not a surprise if you follow Cruise Critic). MDR food ... Read More
We like small ships and river cruises so Oceania was a preference over larger ships to see these locations. Verandah stateroom was roomy enough although bathroom and shower were small (not a surprise if you follow Cruise Critic). MDR food was good although we could not say it was head & shoulders above everyone else, as some would have us believe. Both specialty restaurants were better - we enjoyed the extra attention and quality of food. Polo Grill was our preference over Toscana. We found Nautica to be a good blend of the 'large ship' (specialty restaurants, casino, library, etc) and the 'small ship' (easy on and off at all times). However, other than the enrichment lectures, the rest of the on-board activities were the usual mundane mix - I would have expected better from Oceania. Staff was the usual multi-national mix. All were competent but only a few were genuinely engaging. Captain Max was excellent - personable, informative and funny. David was a competent but not terribly warm cruise director. Oceania lived up to its reputation for having a relaxed attitude to bringing wine and beer on board for in-cabin consumption and we certainly appreciated this sensible approach compared to some of the large cruise lines. The only Oceania shore excursion I thought was 'value for money' was to Ypres and Flanders Fields Museum and I recognize that has to be an individual interest. We used Alla Tours for their 2 day grand tour in St Petersburg and would recommend it to all. Thanks to our Cruise Critic roll call, we had set up private tours in both Tallinn and Visby. These were our highlights - great local guides and small groups of 12-14. This is the way to go if you are lucky enough to have a go-getter in your group (thanks, 2skis). Evening entertainment was better than we had expected, both in quality and variety, for a ship this size - no complaints here. The 3 enrichment lectures by Brian Unger were excellent - too bad he couldn't stay on board for more. Some guests swear by Oceania and were on their 6th cruise or more. We have no problems travelling with them again but were not sufficiently wowed to select Oceania to the exclusion of everyone else. Free shore excursions, ship board credits and internet made this one good value for money, but who knows next time. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2016
Just back from our first but not last Oceania cruise.We did a 12 day Baltic cruise in verandah stateroom aft on deck 6. Great location. Quiet. Handy for the Terrace Cafe. Used the stairs all the time. Room is small. Balcony furniture is ... Read More
Just back from our first but not last Oceania cruise.We did a 12 day Baltic cruise in verandah stateroom aft on deck 6. Great location. Quiet. Handy for the Terrace Cafe. Used the stairs all the time. Room is small. Balcony furniture is old and uncomfortable. Great bed and bedding. Room small, awkward getting in to closet if someone wants to get in our out of the closet. Stateroom was kept clean. Nice Bulgari toiletries but small bathroom. Very good food. Hot plates for hot food. Meat and fish and seafood perfectly cooked for our liking. Went to Polo and Toscana once each....service is slow. Did not go more than once as the Grand Dining Room was very good.Waves Grill good for lunch....wish it was open for dinner. Best burger. Good wines by the glass selection. Great itinerary...some free shuttles from the ship in to town.Did not do any ship excursions. Crew hard working and friendly. Did not click with the cruise director David somebody...he seemed arrogant. Evening entertainment so so but it is a small ship. Did not buy anything in the shops....no large or XL sizes. Poor perfume selection. Captain Maxsym was friendly and warm....enjoyed his daily updates. Will return to Oceania but will try an O class ship next time. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2016
We choose Oceania on the recommendation of some friends who had taken their cruise in Alaska. In looking at the itinerary I saw that on Nautica's August 28, 2016 itinerary, there were some ports we had not been to so that is why I ... Read More
We choose Oceania on the recommendation of some friends who had taken their cruise in Alaska. In looking at the itinerary I saw that on Nautica's August 28, 2016 itinerary, there were some ports we had not been to so that is why I choose Oceania. Everything (food, cabin, staff, ports, etc.) about it was excellent!!! The ratio of passengers to staff makes for very personal service. We liked the idea of going to breakfast, lunch, or dinner when we wanted instead of having to have reservations or a particular time....of course during operating hours. However, there were 2 speciality restaurants where you had to make reservations. One was the Polo Grill and the other Toscana. These were a little less casual (& many men didn't wear jackets) & more refined (for lack of another word), because there was "wait staff" so there wasn't passengers walking to & fro, getting up & down, etc. This was nice once in a while, although we found we also liked eating "casual" after walking around a port or touring. Most of the passengers were 65+ I would guess. Many of those we spoke to had been on a number of other cruises in their 70-80 years. All very interesting people. I was surprised that more men didn't wear jeans, although one wasn't out of place if he did. Guess "older" men prefer khakis when traveling. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2016
As virgin ocean cruisers, but experienced river cruisers, we were not sure what to expect. We chose this particular cruise mainly because of the reputation of Oceania, the cruise had only one sea day, a relatively small number of ... Read More
As virgin ocean cruisers, but experienced river cruisers, we were not sure what to expect. We chose this particular cruise mainly because of the reputation of Oceania, the cruise had only one sea day, a relatively small number of passengers (684), many destinations that we had not visited and a competitive price. Getting on and off the ship was easy at all times of the cruise which was one of concerns about ocean cruising, although our luggage took a long time to appear even though we were one of the first to board. The ship itself was also pleasantly fitted out and with many activities to participate in, although the only ones that we took advantage of were the daily trivia (good fun), lectures (excellent) and the evening shows (average). We preferred the informality of the buffet meals in the Terrace Cafe to the formality of the speciality restaurants (Toscana & Polo Grill) and the Grand Dining Room. The food and service in all locations was good with the best choice at the Terrace Cafe. We took three of the four free excursions in St Petersburg due to the visa restrictions and took the other one in Visby. The remaining eight locations were all 'do-able' on our own, using complimentary coaches, local tourist reps on board, internet research, local transport and a willingness to walk a bit. The exception was Berlin where we had stayed on the way to joining the ship in Copenhagen. We also took a few extra days in Copenhagen before the cruise and Southampton at the end of the cruise. We would recommend both these locations. The size of the Nautica meant it could get close in to most cities so we were never left struggling in a remote commercial port. The highlights of the cruise were the approach and departure from Stockholm plus the (short) time St Petersburg. Transiting the Kiel Canal was also interesting for us as it had a bit of a river cruise feel about it. The negatives were : 1) the alcohol pricing policy with wine starting at US$47 per bottle off the wine list or US$27 corkage per bottle for BYO. 2) the price of optional excursions which were several times the price which we could purchase them on the internet. 3) the claim of free unlimited Internet access which is actually limited to one login per cabin at any time, limited by the number of users at any time, limited by quality of signal and limited by where you were on the ship. We think that Oceania should reconsider this pricing policy (the heart of their 'O-Life' sales pitch) as it distorts the true cost of a cruise if clients pay the price of the add-ons. Overall we enjoyed our first ocean cruise as it met most of our expectations. Would we take another Ocean cruise? - Yes provided it went to places we want to go with minimal sea days. Would we go with Oceania again? - Yes provided that the prices were competitive. Is River better than Ocean cruising? - We prefer the intimacy of the smaller boats but if you have certain places on your bucket list (eg Alaska, Norwegian Fjords) then Ocean cruising is the only way to go. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2016
OVERVIEW: We (my wife and I) selected this cruise based on previous experience sailing with Oceania, and also the itinerary of this specific cruise. The Norwegian Fjords were on our "bucket list" and this cruise also included ... Read More
OVERVIEW: We (my wife and I) selected this cruise based on previous experience sailing with Oceania, and also the itinerary of this specific cruise. The Norwegian Fjords were on our "bucket list" and this cruise also included three ports in Russia: Murmansk, Solovetsky Islands, and Archangel. The cruise was wonderful, we would highly recommend it. Anyone considering this itinerary, regardless of cruise line, should realize that the weather is unpredictable. We had wonderful weather, out of 20 days we had 18 days without rain and warmer than expected; but weather is always a roll of the dice and especially for this part of the world. However the cruise director confided that the same cruise in 2015 experienced fog most every day. All that said we would still highly recommend this cruise, the landscapes of Norway change as you travel north above the arctic circle and there is no place quite like. We thoroughly enjoyed our cruise. The only negative points involved embarkation and disembarkation which is covered below. SHIP: Oceania Nautica is a smaller ship, about 680 passengers. We enjoy this because it allows meeting many the other passengers, and the open seating in the dining room facilitates getting acquainted with fellow travelers. The staff was excellent, always helpful and attentive. DINING: Oceania takes pride in the ships cuisine, and we were not disappointed. The menu in the Grand Dining Room was varied every day and the number of selections rather amazing. Although some selections were better than others, we were never disappointed. There are also two specialty restaurants which require reservations, Polo Grill offers primarily steaks, and Toscana is Italian cuisine. SERVICE: The service was excellent, from the front desk to the cabin steward everyone was personable and did everything they could to be helpful and attentive. ENTERTAINMENT: There were shows in the lounge every evening after dinner, the entertainment was always good. There were also special entertainers such as a magician, and dance duo, during portions of the cruise. PORTS and EXCURSIONS: We are independent travelers so the only excursions we purchased were the ports in Russia. The reason was that you need to obtain a Russian Visa to explore on your own in Russia, this is not necessary if you stay with the tours offered by Oceania. We find the price of Oceania's excursions to be quite high, so we set off on our own in the Norwegian ports. Also, we found the tour buses in this remote part of Russia are not typical. The buses are smaller, do not have air conditioning, and the sound system used by the guide is sometimes very poor. EMBARKATION and DISEMBARKATION: This is the primary reason that we did not rate the cruise as "Excellent". We flew to Copenhagen to board and purchased the Oceania airport transfer to the ship. On our previous cruise with Oceania we were met at baggage claim and had assistance with our luggage from the baggage claim area to the bus. This time we had to roll our luggage from the airport to the bus which was parked about a five minute walk away. We could have taken a taxi to the ship and paid a fraction of what the bus transfer cost. We disembarked the ship at Southhampton and our flight home was from London Heathrow, so again we purchased the airport transfer. Leaving the ship was chaos, our bus was to be the first leave but apparently had to wait for people who were tardy. The entire process could have been much better organized. When we finally got underway it was a 2 hour drive to Heathrow which only allowed about 1 hour to get our bags checked and get through security. Our flight was boarding by the time we arrived at the gate. This was much too close for comfort, and we paid a premium for the stress of the situation. Again, we will investigate alternatives in the future. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2016
This was our first time on Oceania, recommended by our travel agent, we have cruised approx 20 times on 7 different cruise lines, including Crystal, Seabourn, Ponant, Princess, Royal Caribbean, Azamera & Star line, .This was by far ... Read More
This was our first time on Oceania, recommended by our travel agent, we have cruised approx 20 times on 7 different cruise lines, including Crystal, Seabourn, Ponant, Princess, Royal Caribbean, Azamera & Star line, .This was by far the worst cruise ever, food was dreadful in all outlets accept the speciality restaurants,,except for a few staff members, service was poor, the crew are obviously unhappy with there deal & are not interested, the food handlers have had little training & have no idea concerning food presentation, food is thrown on your plate at the Terrace, it also very noticeable that some supervisors don't interact with junior staff nicely. Prices of drinks are expensive, therefore the bars are empty with no atmosphere, everyone brings drinks on board & consumes them in their cabin. The Nautical entertainers were also below par for a cruise this long 30 days. The two speciality restaurants were very good, but not good enough to bring us back to Oceania. In the long run all inclusive cruises are far better value, the charges never stop on Oceania 2$ for the use of washing machine, another 2$ for the use of the dryer, 11$ for Yoga class, 9$ for head phones for the tread mill, this is before you have a drink. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2015
Chose this cruise simply because of the itinerary. The idea of 18% added on to all purchases is anathema to us but we decided we would not purchase anything that involved this charge. Embarkation was quick with baggage being taken ... Read More
Chose this cruise simply because of the itinerary. The idea of 18% added on to all purchases is anathema to us but we decided we would not purchase anything that involved this charge. Embarkation was quick with baggage being taken from you as you entered into the jetty marque. Usual pettiness regarding security, I believe this is now a self perpetuating industry as you come across it everywhere. Ship décor has a dark Victorian theme which we think appeals to the American market, (country club), but we found it rather foreboding. (British). Having said that, it was all very clean and Horizons was a pleasant place to be for views, comfort and high tea. There is some good artwork in corridors, stairways and public areas. Food was very good in all restaurants if you could get into them. Waiters very good but maître-d's could be a bit touchy and abrupt especially if requiring a table for two. Special restaurants Toscana and Polo are difficult to get into as higher grade cabins have three sittings allocated to them and I do believe there is some greasing of palms goes on to get a place, again, tables for two are discouraged. Toscana we found to be pretentious and pompous with the food quality and service not as good as the rest of the ship. Polo was excellent all round, beef fillet was to die for and service impeccable. Entertainment we didn't take part in, we are not bingo, trivia or casino fans. Theatre shows were good except for the American acts, but I suppose we would say that. There is definitely a culture and taste divide between those either side of the "pond" where entertainment is concerned. In some instances the American passengers could be loud, demanding and annoying. The cruise director, Mr Carr, was one of these, I got to dread the sound "bing bong bing bong" on the PA system. He could be very repetitive and patronising, loud and loved the sound of his own voice which grated on my ears. After leaving the Kiel Canal we encountered some fairly lumpy waters, nothing much to worry about, however, at 0200 in the morning we were struck by a rogue wave on the port quarter which stove in some dining room windows and flooded the dining room as well as throwing everything on the set tables onto the deck. The crew cleared lower deck and cleared up during the rest of the night, commendable but no need for Mr Carr to keep going on about it. The crew would not have had a choice to turn out or not, nevertheless, they worked hard to clear the areas involved. Excursions were extortionately priced and we did not go on any of them. From what we overheard they were not very good value for money either. We arranged our St Petersburg tours on the internet, very easy, and other ports of call we used tourist offices or hop on hop off. Dis-embarkation in Southampton was well organised and went well. The local cab drivers are rogues, wanting a £10 minimum fare plus the metre for a 11/2 mile journey to station. Looking for long distance to Gatwick and Heathrow. Having said that, a darn sight cheaper than if booking on board. We would be hard pressed to go with Oceania again only because it didn't suit our tastes. We are sure it will suit a lot of cruisers out there. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2015
This was our first time on Oceania line (which does not appear to have a very high profile in Australia it seems - perhaps it will change once NCL open their own office here rather than an agency) and overall we were very happy with the ... Read More
This was our first time on Oceania line (which does not appear to have a very high profile in Australia it seems - perhaps it will change once NCL open their own office here rather than an agency) and overall we were very happy with the quality of décor, food, etc. The ratio of staff to guests was very high and overall the experience was excellent, with very good quality dining, either formal or casual. Spending an evening during the "rogue" wave on entry to the North Sea, was not a night to live through again, with the constant sound of glass crashing and anything that could move, including the bed, moving! Everyone on board was generally very friendly and their was a nice ambience for the whole journey. We were not 100% happy with our PH2 cabin and have written separately about this on cabin review. Oceania also does need to look after guests who wish to play bridge, and one rec'd the impression that this definitely was not an activity catered for - it could have been so good, as many were interested. There was often confusion as to where the time was being allocated - the card room or makeshift tables in the Polo Grill (not good). There were not sufficient card packs, pens, scoring sheets, let alone some basic refreshments for players. Very very poor by Oceania. Guests should not be expected to carry cards so they can hopefully get a game on board. The entertainment was so-so from what little we saw. Re port visits we did our own thing and organized an independent 2 day St. Petersburg tour via DenRus which was excellent. We did several "hop-on hop-off" bus tours and on the Zeebrugge stop we chose to make our own way to Ghent, which was worthwhile, as we had already been to Bruges. Some days there were "challenges" in the laundry room - one such facility is obviously not sufficient for the no. of passengers. All in all we enjoyed and would book again with Oceania, for the right ports of call. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2015
We booked this cruise about 4 weeks before departure. I was disappointed at first that I wasn't able to get a room with a balcony but our ocean view room was perfect and I'm glad we didn't spend the extra money! Everything ... Read More
We booked this cruise about 4 weeks before departure. I was disappointed at first that I wasn't able to get a room with a balcony but our ocean view room was perfect and I'm glad we didn't spend the extra money! Everything about this trip was fantastic. We have been on several cruises, from small to large, and this was by far our favorite. From the accommodations to the food to the staff (cruise director Ray was fabulous) to the options for shore excursions, nothing was overlooked. It is definitely an older crowd (my husband and I are 51 & 54) but we met plenty of people near our age and enjoyed the company of everyone we met. We will definitely take another Oceania cruise in the future! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2015
My wife and I just completed the 20 night Great Northern Lights cruise on the Nautical. This was our first Oceania cruise after cruising on their sister line, Regent, several times. We are very pleased with our first experience with this ... Read More
My wife and I just completed the 20 night Great Northern Lights cruise on the Nautical. This was our first Oceania cruise after cruising on their sister line, Regent, several times. We are very pleased with our first experience with this line! Travel to embarkation with air provided by Oceania was very smooth, on time and uneventful. Check in was extremely well organized and efficiently completed. Our stateroom was ready at 1:30 p m, our luggage arrived soon after. Our stateroom, a concierge level balcony room, was very nice. Our room was very well cared for by our two room stewardesses, cleaned very well and done when most convenient to us. Dining was a treat on the Nautica for us. The two specialty restaurants, the Polo Grill(steakhouse) and Toscana(Italian) serve great food in a smaller room with great atmosphere. The Grand Dining room has an expanded menu and also serves very good food. The buffet restaurant offers all three meals in a top level area with great views and a large variety of offerings. The buffet being offered at dinner provides a quicker alternative if you don't want to spend 1 1/2-2 hours for dinner. Entertainment on the ship had great variety--singers, comedians, instrumentalists, magicians, and a very good show band. As group ship entertainment goes, this was excellent. The best thing about the Nautica--without a doubt was the crew. The service far exceeded any expectations we had. Every level of crew went above and beyond to please the passengers. Also outstanding was the cruise director, Ray Carr. Disembarkation was highly organized and was carried out without any issues. We would definitely cruise with Oceania again! Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2014
We were traveling a two mature couples who have taken twelve cruises in the last 10 or so years. We booked with Oceania because we were told they had wonderful food and great service but were a little less expensive than Seabourn. As it ... Read More
We were traveling a two mature couples who have taken twelve cruises in the last 10 or so years. We booked with Oceania because we were told they had wonderful food and great service but were a little less expensive than Seabourn. As it turned out it wasn't any less expensive. I am writing this review without comparing it to our other experiences but based on what I would expect at a reasonably good hotel or restaurant. Everyday in your Currents they give you a menu for the next days dining. So all day you think about what you're going to have for dinner, then you get to the Grand Dining room and it turns out they put the wrong menu in the newsletter. This happened more than once! More often than not the food was luke warm to cool when it arrived at the table. Lunch or Dinner in the Terrace Café was like eating in a cafeteria and the food wasn't very good except for the soups. The scrambled eggs were awful! One night when everyone was to come to the show before dinner they only had one bartender for 400 people. The waiters and bartenders were pleasant but under staffed in general. We had purchased the unlimited drink package because we didn't want to deal with signing tickets all the time. In Toscana we offered our cards to the wine steward as soon as we ordered a glass of wine and she said she didn't need them but then It was a issue and she was rude at the end of the meal because she had accounted for our wine in the wrong way. It was our traveling companions 40th anniversary which our travel agent had noted on the reservation and nothing was done for it until we were so disappointed when they didn't have lamb (the menu in the Currents listed lamb as an entrée) the night we were celebrating. The waiter brought out a cake and a couple of them sang. Our ports of call were wonderful and the tours were very good and well run. All of the guides were pleasant, easy to understand and informative. The entertainment was nice but not memorable. We didn't do any spa services because you can't book prior to boarding the ship. Possibly you can if you are in a very expensive cabin. On this ship I truly did feel like there was a "class" system". We opted to take a taxi to our hotel in Stockholm instead of using the ships expensive transportation. It was obvious that a lot of us chose that option, there were hundreds of us in a confusing snaking line waiting for a taxi. Instead of telling us we could leave anytime before 9:00 they had everyone who was taking a taxi leave at the same time. Lots of unhappy people! In summary the ports were wonderful, but the four of us won't be cruising with Oceania again, we're going back to Viking, Holland American and Seabourn.   Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2013
Good points: * Boarding went smoothly except for malfunctioning credit card machine which required us to make extra trip to reception to resolve * Love the ability ship has to store half finished wine bottle for later use when dining * ... Read More
Good points: * Boarding went smoothly except for malfunctioning credit card machine which required us to make extra trip to reception to resolve * Love the ability ship has to store half finished wine bottle for later use when dining * Staff was efficient and mostly friendly * Stateroom was nice * Excursion guides were all good and professional * cabin staff was very efficient and kept room in great shape * plentiful ice cream but could have had more flavor Problems: * Bathroom was a joke, so small that you had to sit partially side-ways on toilet, no cup holder so Glass was free to fall into toilet * I expected food to be very good but four of eight main courses were overcooked, much of it was not adequately seasoned (I thought I had taste bud problem until I ate some food on-shore), had to spit out some very bad smoked salmon, buffet was badly laid out so that you were constantly bumping into people, * Worst issue were excursions: they were overcrowded and cattle calls, it was obvious they were pushing the max passengers to each venue in one case putting multiple bus loads into a small museum making it almost impassable * I found staff efficient and mostly attentive but two dinners took over two hours as we were ignored for long periods * About 2/3 of staff smiled as they worked but about 1/3 while working well were obviously not happy to be there (this is a management problem not the crew's fault) * out of space but could go on. Previous cruises: Paul Gauguin, Windstar (3), Skorpios (small ships in southern Chile) Read Less
Nautica Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 3.9
Dining 5.0 4.3
Entertainment 3.0 3.3
Public Rooms 5.0 4.4
Fitness Recreation 5.0 3.8
Family 2.0 3.8
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.0
Enrichment 5.0 3.5
Service 4.0 4.5
Value For Money 5.0 3.5
Rates 5.0 3.9

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