1. Home
  2. Cruise Lines
  3. Costa Cruises
  4. Costa Cruises Cruise Reviews

136 Costa Baltic Sea Cruise Reviews

I was party leader for a group of 10 friends and family. I joined this cruise with low expectations, based on the previous reviews. What I actually experienced was way beyond my expectations. We did the Baltic Cruise and visited Stockholm, ... Read More
I was party leader for a group of 10 friends and family. I joined this cruise with low expectations, based on the previous reviews. What I actually experienced was way beyond my expectations. We did the Baltic Cruise and visited Stockholm, Helsinki, St Petersburg and Tallinn. This is an expensive route normally and this was a budget price in the scheme of things. Based on what we paid and what we received there are no complaints. The food was of a good standard at the buffet and the formal dinner and in fact some of the formal dinner food was amazing. I had one of the best beef steaks I have ever had on one evening! The waiters could have been a bit more jovial but they were not rude and their service was fine and we always had a good experience every night. The room was bigger than expected with a good size comfy bed and plenty of hanging space for clothes. We did not see our cabin steward at any time on the cruise but the service was fine and the room was always well looked after. We did have a problem with a shower tray that would not empty properly so one ended up stood in water and also with water overflowing onto the main bathroom floor. I reported this and they came and fixed it while we were out. They then called the room later that day to make sure that we were happy with the fix and by that time we had not used the shower. When we used the shower we found that it was not working correctly still and so we called them and once again they came out to fix it. Once again they called us later that day to check it was ok and this time the fix had worked. I have been on many cruises and I have never had a follow up call to make sure that we were happy with the fix. This is a first for me, so well done to them for actually taking the time twice to make sure we were happy with the repair/fix. Credit where credits due. We did three excursions through Costa and two of these were very good. However we did do the Best of Stockholm and Vasa Museum tour on the final day which is a 3.5 hour tour at €70 per person their ref 2501. This is rushed tour and is not enough time. It ended up that we only had 40 minutes in the Vasa Museum, which is the highlight. They introduced this as one of the World's best Museums and a wonderful experience and then gave us only 40 minutes inside. This is ridiculous as in my opinion you need at least 1.5 hours inside, minimum. I would suggest that you go privately and take your time as this is an amazing museum that deserves more of your time. This was a blemish on what was otherwise a great trip. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
The restaurant staff very professional and well trained. Out cabine room was superficial clean every day lots of dust and the bedsheets not changed for the entire week. The excursion staff lack of knowledge and very rude not happy to offer ... Read More
The restaurant staff very professional and well trained. Out cabine room was superficial clean every day lots of dust and the bedsheets not changed for the entire week. The excursion staff lack of knowledge and very rude not happy to offer any excursions in English unless is just downtown were we can go by ourselves. We we looking forward to have a nice hiking and engage with nature but NOT POSSIBLE NOT POSSIBLE. When we book the excursion there was nowhere mentioned that they don’t have a English guide available not the necessary number of people needed so the tour can be offer. The excursion assistant manager poor poor quality of service and very disrespectful. I wasn’t expected to have such a unprofessional staff.They absolutely were so rude that I will never try a cruise with this company and I will let everyone know about my terrible experience on the ship. It almost felt that staff were angry when speaking to them in English. They don’t have the urge to offer quality service as you seen been advertised. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
In my opinion this cruise has one port missing. It arrives in Stockholm on a Friday, boarding is on a Saturday, then it leaves for Helsinki, following is 2 days St. Petersburg, then a short time in Tallin. The day after is again in ... Read More
In my opinion this cruise has one port missing. It arrives in Stockholm on a Friday, boarding is on a Saturday, then it leaves for Helsinki, following is 2 days St. Petersburg, then a short time in Tallin. The day after is again in Stockholm, and the following day you have to disembark. I can't understand why they don't add Latvia for example instead of docking for 2 days in Stockholm. Otherwise it would have been nice to have 3 days in Russia, but Stockholm is the least city that one has to see. Something about the ship, decor is very old, brown and orange everywhere, breakfast very poor, bacon and sausages are not even good for dogs...thanks God they offered meat in the grill section which I enjoyed very much for breakfast. In the evening we ate at the sit-in restaurant, food taste average, food decoration very nice. Entertainment during sit-in dinner ZERO neither some background recorded music except for the Italian night and the gala dinner where there was live entertainment which we enjoyed very much. At the pool area NO MUSIC except when there are organised activities which happen only when the ship is at sea...I find this so stupid as it is costless to put a nice music on through a CD...The pool slide on Costa Magica was delusive..it is opened only for 1 hr if you're lucky. So, we booked this ship for the slide and when we boarded we could'nt even use it, we had to wait until the last day to go on it 3 times as they did'nt advise its opening times and we encountered it open by chance....why? we presume so that they won't have to repaint it since the blue colour comes off on your swimsuit or because they don't want to waste human resources to guard the slide. As for the bar service, we bought Piu Gusto for all the cabin which was a family of 4. One of us went to get 2 drinks from the pool bar and the barman humiliated him by asking him for another card....why when our package included unlimited drinks? why ruin guests holiday experience with this approach?? as for children activities the Peppa Pig activities were great and the children had so much fun in the Squok Club...so well done to them. I was going to forget about this...this is unbelievable but true...guys forget that you will be getting an ice cream or a nice milkshake on the ship...if you want one you have to pay for it...this is our 5th cruise and we never encountered anything similar!! As for the Photos...when they will learn that if they reduce the price they will sell more? it's unbelievable how many photos they throw away after every cruise when if they sell them at least half the price many people will be encouraged to buy them...very greedy and stupid behavior in my opinion. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Costa is a Very Surprising Compony, We Enter the Ship in St. Petersburg, the ship is quite of big and good. We Booked Cabin with Window and the Cabin is quite big and good but there a addtion staff on money. The food on costa is good , ... Read More
Costa is a Very Surprising Compony, We Enter the Ship in St. Petersburg, the ship is quite of big and good. We Booked Cabin with Window and the Cabin is quite big and good but there a addtion staff on money. The food on costa is good , there what to eat everywhere. there 2 restaurants on the ship. We was on smeralda and it was an goodrestaurant but it was take the food a long to get. Costa having a show every day Evening. there a lot what to see on board and what to do. But Pizza on board is on additonal Payment. the service on board is good. on Information there staff that talking in multi languages. the loading and unloading was good and quick. and the shops on costa is quite good and recommanded to wait to last day for sales . very nice cruise maybe We'll go again Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Visiting the places we were interested in. Good value for money and suits all budgets. Booking in was very efficient. The ship it’s self was very ornate bars, lovely theatre & lounges. The food was ok if not fab, but ... Read More
Visiting the places we were interested in. Good value for money and suits all budgets. Booking in was very efficient. The ship it’s self was very ornate bars, lovely theatre & lounges. The food was ok if not fab, but bearing in mine the cost it was good value for money. The cabin staff, lounge staff and restaurant were lovely. What spoilt our experience somewhat was the aggressive attitude of the bar staff and some reception staff. We always treat all the staff with respect and a smile but some staff thought it was ok to be rude and aggressive. We did the Stockhol, Helsinki, St Petersburg, TAllinn stops and i would highly recommend these, take an extra day in Stockholm as there is plenty to see. At this point I am not sure I would book Costa again, purely due to the number of times I encountered rude staff and saw how they behaved towards other passengers, even on 1 occasion to an elderly and frail lady. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Boarding: boarding in Kiel took hours. I’m new to cruising, but it seemed rather disorganized with little possibility for seating. The terminal in Kiel was an uncomfortable , utilitarian facility. None of the screens were working, Costa ... Read More
Boarding: boarding in Kiel took hours. I’m new to cruising, but it seemed rather disorganized with little possibility for seating. The terminal in Kiel was an uncomfortable , utilitarian facility. None of the screens were working, Costa Personnel were walking around with signs to tell people which groups were boarding. Ship’s decor: the ship has a musical “theme” which is so tasteless and kitschy and dated. One can see that the ship isn’t the newest. There are plenty of signs of wear and tear. The Casino takes up a lot of square meters so I suppose it is a big money maker for the ship. Cabin: we booked two premium balcony cabins. The balcony was fine, two chairs and a little table. It was a relief to be able to escape the never ending noise of the ship. Except that our cabin on deck 6 was right over a bar. So at 10 pm when we were ready to go to sleep because of a busy day in port, the music in the bar was so loud that our cabin was shaking and one could literally sing along with the songs if one was so inclined. But we just wanted to sleep! Only possible with earplugs for all 10 days!!! Shower had a flimsy cloth curtain that was not adequate to keep water from dripping all over the bathroom. And a few nervous moments when we were getting dangerously low on toilet paper. Our toilet didn’t always flush. The mattress was hard and uncomfortable. The pillows were lumpy and synthetic. You can only choose softer or down pillows in suites. The cabin steward was super polite and did a good job cleaning and tidying our cabin every day. The spa: definitely worth the €135 Euro spa pass. A very fine spa with 4 different steam baths and a super jacuzzi. And a sun room with a great view. There are only adults which is a relief as all other pools and jacuzzis are full of children. The jacuzzis are from 16+, but this is not enforced by the personnel. Small children in warm bubbly water...I’ll let you guess what it must be full of. My husband and I both booked hot stone massages that were wonderful, but the relaxation was destroyed when both our masseuses turned our massages into a sales pitch for foot cream (€30), neck cream (€40), 21 day detox cure with vitamins and tea (a bargain at €180), and 20 packets of bath salts that are almost as good as a massage (“only” €10 a packet, much cheaper than a massage”). It was very difficult to convince her that I wasn’t interested. She definitely didn’t take polite no thank you’s. So all the stress that was massaged away was right back again. I’m sure they are pressured to sell products. She tried to schedule me for another €100 massage, but you can be sure I wasn’t going to put myself through that again. I’ve never experienced that in a spa before. Fitness center: very well outfitted, also for 16+ but full of kids playing around on the machines. No personnel was present to enforce this. Several “health” seminars are offered, but they always end in being a sales pitch for insoles or detox vitamins. Food: absolutely inedible. Our assigned table was in New York, New York. Nice waiter, but he messed up our orders every time. The food was cold, dry, tiny portions that barely resembled their descriptions. The salad leaves were wilted (brown around the edges) and the seatings took almost 2 hours plus. That was a lot of sitting for so little food. My 190cm tall 24 year old son had to eat in the buffet afterwards so he wouldn’t be hungry. So we decided to eat in the La Paloma buffet restaurant. Long lines, lukewarm food, and to top it off, my 22 year old son and I both got food poisoning which kept us up all night with vomiting and diarrhea. Luckily we had two cabins! I was very careful afterwards in my food choices. The only truly tasty food was the focaccia at lunch time. The breakfast buffet was full of sweets. The rolls were small and dry. The eggs were powdered and wet. Only two types of cheese and very limited sliced meats. The “orange” juice was anything but. You could also sit down in the NY, NY restaurant for breakfast. But the buffet is exactly the same as La Paloma buffet restaurant. Only difference is that the coffee cups are smaller and the tea is served with lukewarm water and there is linen and silver on the table. The joke is I lost weight on this cruise, who loses weight on a cruise?? The gelato was super, but you had to pay for it. Entertainment: the Italian lifestyle requires that most entertainment started at 9.30-10.30 pm. Well, we arrived early in the morning in port, so I don’t know how people could party all night and have a full day of touring the next day. There were theme nights every night that it appeared that every Italian on board had the required clothes but we had received no information prior to the cruise about which outfits were required for the various parties. The white gala night, the international night, the Italian night, the French night, the masquerade night, etc....not that you would have packed for so many themes if you didn’t know about it. So we felt excluded from a large part of the on board entertainment. Excursions: we booked two excursions, Danzig and Marienburg, and two days in St. Petersburg (grand tour). Both were very expensive but we had very good guides and the food was the only tasty food we got on the trip. The buses were new and air conditioned. Our guide in St. Petersburg was great. She could get us through thousands of Chinese tour groups with seeming ease. All other destinations we used hop on, hop off buses that you can catch at the harbor. This is a much cheaper option. Destinations: great, but 5 hours in Tallinn was inadequate. Why we arrived at 1 pm instead of 8 is a mystery. I suspect docking was cheaper after 12. And three huge cruise ships at once pretty much filled the town up. Personnel: generally very friendly. We had one very unpleasant situation when we arrived I Tallinn. Many passengers had headed for the exits as we all wanted to make the most of our 5 hours. Suddenly a large Spanish guy in a white uniform started yelling at us in a very sharp tone to go away before the announcement was made to wait one floor above. We had even been sent by other crew members to wait where we were waiting. It was really uncalled for. He started yelling at Spanish passengers too. It wasn’t a friendly and helpful tone. And we weren’t a mob, there were at the most 15 people standing there. There was a daily animation program but it was quite difficult to follow in 5 languages! But kudos to the crew for trying. The internet: super expensive, €107 for 3 GB and it barely worked. In the end I actually hadn’t used my full three GB’s because I couldn’t download or upload anything because it was so slow. The social media flat is probably a better deal. We were close enough to land that our roaming worked fine most of the time. All inclusive: our package included the pio gusto drinks package. Only silly thing, they wouldn’t provide a bottle of water. Those had to be bought. And you weren’t allowed to fill water bottles at the water dispensers. So lukewarm chlorine water from our tap was the only possibility in the cabin. We bought bottled water in port. To round it up: We would never travel with Costa again, but now we know what to look for on a cruise Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
We had used Costa once and were not very pleased, the only reason we chose it again is because it was the only cruise that we found that would go to Norway on the dates we had available. The ports of call were spectacular, enjoyed the ... Read More
We had used Costa once and were not very pleased, the only reason we chose it again is because it was the only cruise that we found that would go to Norway on the dates we had available. The ports of call were spectacular, enjoyed the views, the fjords, nature, falls and train rides. It was a multicultural experience with people from a lot of nationalities. The food was average, being vegetarian, I had usually one option on the menu. On our last cruise with Costa, in South America, the pasta was superb, so I was looking forward to that, but was very disappointed. The menu was very weird. They need an italian chef to bring good pasta. Going to the buffet was a challenge for me because I had a walking disability and used a cane, and you had a station for fruit, another for salads, for deserts, for water, and for hot foods. So there was a lot of walking, and it was usually crowded and hard to find a place to sit. One day I felt like eating pizza and found out that they charge for pizza! and also for ice cream! (which was a free option when we cruised with Costa before) Being from USA we were not charged for water, but the rest of the passengers had to pay. Our server for dinner was I Nyoman Darsana from Indonesia. Great person, very polite and courteous. The programming was average. The best shows were the acrobatics and Mimes. The room cleanliness was average. The carpet was stained and needs to be cleaned (room 4181) The sheets and towels in general seemed old and grayish colored. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
We visited Stockholm, St Petersburg, Tallinn and Helsinki. This was a beautiful cruise that is very well organized in every aspect. I think it also gives you a great sense of Italy and their way of life and partying. The only bad ... Read More
We visited Stockholm, St Petersburg, Tallinn and Helsinki. This was a beautiful cruise that is very well organized in every aspect. I think it also gives you a great sense of Italy and their way of life and partying. The only bad thing that I have to point out is that they have VERY small swimming pools on the ship, and this is a real problem when 3000 people want to swim at the same time. I loved the food, Italian cuisine is famous worldwide and I think there is something to eat for everyone. :))) And they have a WONDERFUL entertainment team which made me dance and stay awake every single night till God knows which hours. Important to know: - You can link your credit card to your ship card and then don't have to worry about payment. - They have totems now, so you can book your excursions there. - Embarkation and disembarkation went smoothly and without any crowds and problems. I will definitely travel with Costa again! Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Review Summary The question is...Would I recommend taking a Baltic Cruise on Costa Pacifica? I will reluctantly say “Yes”. The Cruise Ship is well worth the money spent. The destinations are absolutely exquisite. The only hesitation ... Read More
Review Summary The question is...Would I recommend taking a Baltic Cruise on Costa Pacifica? I will reluctantly say “Yes”. The Cruise Ship is well worth the money spent. The destinations are absolutely exquisite. The only hesitation I have is the food as it was terrible. Embarkation Getting to the Port in Kiel Germany was very easy. The Cruise Terminal is ~1 mile from the Kiel Train Station (HBF). Plenty of shops and food establishments to peruse before boarding. The boarding process was abysmal. Massive amount of passengers being funneled into 6 check-in stations. It took ~4 hours from arriving at the Terminal to boarding the ship. Baggage arrived to the cabin later in the evening. Absolutely miserable experience. Ship Experiences Food and Dining Main Dining Room was mediocre at best. Presentation of dishes was average. Quality and variety was well below average. Little to no fresh vegetables and fruits. Buffet was nearly inedible. Same low quality dishes every single day. The breads and desserts were above average. Little to no fresh vegetables and fruits. Specialty Restaurants were no better. Drink Packages and Bars were above average. This is the primary disappointment. Was expecting good Italian Dining, yet received meals that were so horrible. In addition, four of our party became violently ill throughout the cruise directly related to the food. Onboard Activities The shipboard activities were outstanding. The ship was filled with activity daily and was one of the most exciting cruise ships I have been aboard. Entertainment All of the Performances and Entertainers were excellent. One the most exciting cruise ships I have been aboard. Children's Programs No children Service and Staff The Crew were outstanding in all aspects. Very friendly and professional. Ship Quality The ship is in great shape. While the decor is very brash, it fits the energy of the cruise. Appropriate Music throughout the ship. Cabin / Stateroom Cabin is above average with plenty of storage space. Tastefully decorated. The bed and pillows were average. Ship Tip Really think about how important the quality of food is to your cruise experience. Ports Of Call Kiel, Germany No excursion. Good port for Embarking and Disembarking Gdynia (Gdansk), Poland Average port. It is a young city so in a couple of years it will be a much better port. Shuttle to city center is ~$8 Klaipeda, Lithuania Wonderful port. Lots to see and do. Walk to the city center. Very inexpensive. Tallinn, Estonia Wonderful port. Lots to see and do. Walk to the city center. Very inexpensive. St. Petersburg, Russian Federation The Crown Jewel of the Baltics. Spend as much time and money as possible in St Petersburg. Extremely inexpensive. Must obtain a Visa prior to cruise or book an Excursion through the cruise line to exit the port. No exceptions. Helsinki, Finland Beautiful port but not much to see or do. Very expensive. Shuttle to city center is ~$15 Stockholm, Sweden Wonderful port. Lots to see and do. Shuttle to city center is ~$15 Disembarkation Couldn’t get off the ship fast enough. Disembarking is typical as with other ships. Received color coded baggage tags the night before. Pack and set your bags outside your cabin by 1am. Depart the ship at time coordinated by your color code. Bags awaiting you in the Terminal. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
I decided to cruise with Costa because they offer affordable trips to Scandinavia. Unfortunately, this was by far the worst cruise I have ever been on. The ship itself was in pretty good condition. The inside felt cheap but comfortable. ... Read More
I decided to cruise with Costa because they offer affordable trips to Scandinavia. Unfortunately, this was by far the worst cruise I have ever been on. The ship itself was in pretty good condition. The inside felt cheap but comfortable. The ship's layout was fairly confusing and they were constantly ripping up carpet all over due to a bad smell. The inside cabin's are small but comfortable, and the balcony cabins are quite a bit larger with a nice view. As far as dining is concerned, don't expect much out of any meal except for seated dinners, which were mediocre at best. The buffet dining experience was miserable because of overcrowding and disgusting food. The "snack bar" consisted of sad looking frozen hot dogs and hamburgers. The pizza was pretty good (when it was free). The worst part about the dining situation on the Costa Magica was how much extra money you had to spend to have a good experience. Water is the only beverage included in a regular ticket besides the four juice options at breakfast. Charging extra money for alcohol is understandable, but only offering water for a 1500 E ticket is ridiculous. Oh, and don't expect a "late night snack" unless you want to fork over another 15 E after the buffet is closed. The first few nights of on-board shows were some of the saddest I have ever seen. The shows at the end of the week were enjoyable, but not enough to make up for the nightmarish first three nights. The service was consistently poor. Do not expect to be greeted as a guest, but rather as an annoyance. The waiters were not attentive, the service staff was rude, and the security staff have stares that make you want to be on a different planet. The only good service was the maid service. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Booked this well in advance and decided to upgrade to a balcony premium room as also taking teenager with us. Given the reviews of Magica and Costa (read them after booking...) I was concerned that we may regret choosing this - but the ... Read More
Booked this well in advance and decided to upgrade to a balcony premium room as also taking teenager with us. Given the reviews of Magica and Costa (read them after booking...) I was concerned that we may regret choosing this - but the itinery was fab and we have been on a couple of cruises before in eastern med with Royal Caribbean - so checked re package and location of cabin carefully - got a single bed sofa sorted rather than bunk bed - and chose Deck 9 as close to bars/buffet/pool etc. We had a fantastic week - and this is why I am writing the review (given the majority of very negative ones!) - as we really rated the following: - the dining room/food ! we were seated at an English speaking table and we had a laugh from the off. Hello Steve and Trish and John and Bev if you are reading this! - the staff - we found everyone helpful and friendly - far more than previous cruises - we enjoyed the gala night - it wasnt formal or stuffy and the whole set up is very relaxed and casual - if you want formal dont book this ship!! Norbert was excellent - the premium room - spacious and spotless all week - decent shower and loads of storage space. Decent bed including the single one - the sofa bed wasnt a hassle and just stayed down along wall all week which was ideal. - embarking/disembarking - all very straight forward - no waiting getting on or off and the same throughout at various stop offs. We got a public bus from central station when arrived at Stockholm - after gettting Arlanda Express from airport - takes 30 mins and cheap! - the itinery - we chose this primarily as we wanted to get as much time in St P and Stockholm as possible - we booked our own shore excursions in St P and did our own thing in other cities. We had a brilliant time in St P as we wanted to do more specific history and politics tours so used Ulko Tours to go to the Political History museum (fantastic - you could spend 5-6 hours there - ask for english speaking tour guide before you go) and also smaller KGB museum. Also did general city tour 1 day with Advertura - very good. These were costly - so it does add a lot to the overall cost of the holiday which we didnt realise when booking cruise. We booked our own flights to and from Stockholm separately so this gave us an extra day in Stockholm - otherwise we would have had to leave the ship by 4.30am on the last day. So this worked out for us and accomm in Stockholm was reasonable - stayed at Park Inn - a couple of stops on metro which was excellent. So overall we were impressed with Costa and would use them again. Yes - the majority of the passengers are Italian/Spanish (no surprise there then) and yes it was loud and noisy in all the public bars/spaces. The entertainment was as to be expected (!) and yes Costa makes the staff try to sell all sorts so there is too much selling at the info sessions - but we found the overall service and the dining experiences great. Just one thing Costa - please add water to the drinks package - its madness not being able to get a glass of water but as many spirits/wine/beer as you wish. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
I do not normally write a review on cruises. I do always rely on my other half to do this. I have read so many bad and negative reviews about Costa which I was not very keen to sail with them this time. I have traveled a lol, done so ... Read More
I do not normally write a review on cruises. I do always rely on my other half to do this. I have read so many bad and negative reviews about Costa which I was not very keen to sail with them this time. I have traveled a lol, done so many cruises with Royal, Azamara, Cunard, Princess and so on. You just imagine how well they are by name. So I was quite worried to embark on Costa Mediterranea due to my experience with the best ones on the sea. I cannot praise to anyone to give a go, to try it at least once. It was amazing. We sailed this month and we went to the Norwegian Fjords. The ship was glizzy, beautiful though. It's like a Las Vegas Hotel if we want to compare to something. It's not new but no old at all. It has got that sparkle which it makes everything good to be on. We were for 10 days and we enjoyed everyday. We are definitely going back again. Also we have found out that Costa had a free shuttle from Amsterdam (from a station to the port, which no so many cruise liners do that.... On the other hand I just would like to pointing out few things.... We do feel citizens of the world, Costa is a multicultural environment and of course we do not expect everyone to speak with the same accent or this perfect English. Sometimes demand is it perhaps we do want this or that in our own way? Why cruiser just accept what it is without making huge fuss? The only problem is some the passenger itself which they do not know what it does mean respect. To be honest criticize and write a bad review to a cruise company is easy but sometimes we should ourselves understand why sometimes things don't go how we want. Perhaps we expect too much, we treat badly those people who are really working hard on board for us. Just be nice, try to see yourself on the other side and just think how you would like to be treated, perhaps your perception will change a bit. I can't personally knock anything down. It's us we should respect each other when traveling. That's my personal opinion. If you don't like it then you can go with Silversea, Seabourne, Oceania where you pay a high standard rate and you get what you really want. Sorry to be harsh but we just need to stop winging and criticise everything. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
From the beginning of the embarkation to the end I would have to say that we were sorry that we chose Costa. No communication had been given to us for getting to the ship from the airport. The phone number we were given was not in service. ... Read More
From the beginning of the embarkation to the end I would have to say that we were sorry that we chose Costa. No communication had been given to us for getting to the ship from the airport. The phone number we were given was not in service. We worked it out with a taxi at the beginning and end of the cruise at the cost of €100 each way. The itinerary was what we wanted and the tours were well done but for the language barrier. English was at the bottom of their priority list and messages were read after at least 4 other languages first. No one spoke English with less than a severe accent and making it difficulties follow. The crew was sour and rarely smiled. Our safety drill was a series of lining us up at the muster station. Pushed into rows of three, shoulder to shoulder I resented being touched by these serious crew members. Don’t touch me! Tell me. Oh yes, you can’t speak English. The food was mediocre at best. I’ve never lost weight on a cruise before. Communication and manners were lacking almost always. There were no substitutions in the dining room and vegetables were lacking. Any other cruise we’ve been on offer alternatives every day. The buffet was also lacking taste, variety, and tender meat choices. The same menus were offered every day. We could not have butter unless we asked for it and waited for someone to get it from the kitchen. Coffee was offered with breakfast and after that we had to pay for it at the bar. They actually have a drink pkg for coffee juice and water. Most of all, the waiters pushing past you with trays or reaching across you to serve or remove dishes was so rude. Whether you had to step aside for them as they rushed by or get shoved out of line as they filled the clean cup tray, the waiters were rude. Even in the dining room our orders were mixed up and waiters could not seem to serve plates in a mannerly way. They still reached across our faces to serve others. The entertainment was mediocre at best except for one singer and 3 acrobats. The dancers were not nearly what we have seen on any other cruise. Their poor synchronization accompanied poor routines. I guess what frustrated us most was the inattention to the English speaking guests with brief announcements which we did not understand. As well, the tour guides who could speak good English were few with a lack of ability to converse with us. Speaking of inattentive behaviour on the part of the crew, we were mainly ignored with little or no eye contact. The sour looks on most of the employees’ faces indicated a poor work climate perhaps and poor morale amongst staff. Wait staff never helped in any way but to clear dishes at the buffet. No smiles, no good morning, no ability to understand what you might be asking for, such as “Do you have hot cereal this morning, porridge, oatmeal, cream of wheat?” Our room steward was sweet and did his best with a stale-smelling stateroom. The pillows seemed to need washing and the carpets required a good shampoo. (So did our soap dispenser in the bathroom) Another warning is that the added 15% per day is a required fee. They do not regard it as a tip. In fact, they told us that we were free to tip individuals but we could not withhold any of the 15% per day charge for our severely poor service in the dining room. Speaking of money I’d like to say how angry I was at not being able to get an accounting of my charges. I had to have my husband with me because all room charges were put on his account only (even though we signed equal status for charges.) I was the one who booked the cruise, arranged for the tours, paid for our two watches that we bought, all on my Visa not my husband’s. When I asked them to change the accounting they told me that it could not be changed because of the system. All charges and payments would be under the man’s name in a cabin. Really, is this 1950? All said, our itinerary was ideal and the tours worth the money even without good tour guides. There was a lot of written information on each port to follow along. Within the opulence of this ship a number of disappointments seized us and threatened our joy of going to see the land of my heritage. But Norway out-performed this costa ship with its grandeur and awe inspiring beauty. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
This whole cruise experience was awful in so many ways. 1. Cleanliness: In the hallway outside our cabin it constantly smelled like sewage. Our toilet malfunctioned several times, threatening to overflow into the bathroom floor. ... Read More
This whole cruise experience was awful in so many ways. 1. Cleanliness: In the hallway outside our cabin it constantly smelled like sewage. Our toilet malfunctioned several times, threatening to overflow into the bathroom floor. The white towels and bath mat had coin-size brown stains on them. Carpets are filthy and stained, dining linen does not appear to be changed, and we encountered crusty dirty plates, bowls and cutlery in the “clean” stacks at the buffet more than once. The whole ship is peeling at the edges and needs a refresh. 2. Staff: Our cabin steward was lovely but beyond that, the chances of finding any remotely pleasant staff were bleak. Bar staff were rude. Harried customer service desk staff were openly disinterested in helping anyone. Our dining room server seemed depressed. 3. Food: They were constantly out of so many things, including their advertised “special” beers and wines. We were served frozen entrees for dinner that seemed to have been barely microwaved. The coffee station was never open on time in the morning, although staff were going behind the ropes and helping themselves. The one day we ate the sit-down breakfast, we waited 30 minutes to order before we gave up and just had the specialty buffet breakfast in the same room. There was something so bad in what I ate there that I went back to the cabin and threw up immediately (into the toilet that was constantly backing up). The lack of proper food service hygiene and failure to manage the chaos at the buffet created by lack of lines, direction, etc was appalling. 4. Cash Grabs: They up-sell EVERYTHING ... there are an incredible number of non-included food items like the late night pizza and burger bar, room service, or coffee outside of breakfast times. The internet is overpriced and incredibly slow - don’t bother. 5. “Mandatory” Gratuities: We tried to settle our cash account on the second last day and were told it was “impossible” except at the wildly inconvenient time of 6:30 am on the last day. At that time, we lined up for half an hour before being sent around to 4 different places because we had requested the gratuities be removed due to our less than acceptable cruise experience. Everywhere we went we were told it was “impossible”. These “mandatory” gratuities of €10/day per person were not disclosed up front. They are not in the fine print on your booking, but are buried in a faint hyperlink in the terms (so if you printed it out you can’t even see it). The Costa manager refused to remove these charges and was quite aggressive/bullying towards us about it, although any other major cruise line will allow passengers to remove it given it’s not a legally enforceable charge. It seemed really slimy to bury the misleading “mandatory” charges info in a hyperlink and then claim we had agreed to it. Costa tries to get around the law by calling it a “hotel service charge”. Haha, right. Only they are not a hotel; they are a marine vessel. Be aware that your “gratuities” DO NOT go to staff, but into Costa’s coffers. It’s an offensive practice that’s bad for crew and customers alike. Costa, be better. Don’t try to avoid paying your corporate taxes, or to provide a fair living wage and benefits to employees with these kind of murky loopholes. If this is really mandatory and is really used to pay staff, then your company should have no problem being honest and transparent about it and include it as part of the initial cruise price right up front and in the open. This was my third Costa cruise. I enjoyed the first two. Clearly things have deteriorated significantly since Carnival took over and I will never cruise with Costa again. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We chose this cruise because it seemed like good value for money and was visiting some ports not previously visited. We boarded Costa Majestica in Genoa and from then their organisational skills or non organisational skills became evident. ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it seemed like good value for money and was visiting some ports not previously visited. We boarded Costa Majestica in Genoa and from then their organisational skills or non organisational skills became evident. It took at least 4 hours to get on the ship with no regard for the elderly or disabled. The cruise was 28 days from Genoa to Stockholm. Most of the crew were not very friendly, the food was ok but always cold in the Buffet. Getting on and off the ship at most ports was a nightmare long ques along the ships passage ways or when coming back to the ship stretching hundreds of yards with people trying to push to the front which nearly caused some serious fights because of no crew supervision. Again with no regard for the elderly or disabled. Most of the shows and entertainment were in Italian ( which I suppose we should have known, an Italian ship leaving from Genoa). A lot of pre good excursions were cancelled because of the lack of English guides with some people having trouble getting their money back on some tours. We were also told by Costa that when filling in their feed back form only 9 or 10 score will be accepted for questions on the form or it will be discarded, Never agin will I sail. Costa. If anyone from Costa would like to contact me I would welcome it because no Costa represventive on the ship cared very much Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We have always said we wouldn’t cruise with Costa, but when this deal came up we decided to try it. Thankfully, this was a short cruise and therefore the suffering was limited. The pros were that the cabin we were assigned was nice ... Read More
We have always said we wouldn’t cruise with Costa, but when this deal came up we decided to try it. Thankfully, this was a short cruise and therefore the suffering was limited. The pros were that the cabin we were assigned was nice and quiet and the crew were very nice. Also, embarkation and debarkation were relatively quick. The cons are too numerous to list but they include an aggressive attempt to upsell everything, a 6 a.m. beer delivered to our cabin (and a couple of others), and the food in general. Costa has very little for vegetarians other than pity and disdain. I asked for the vegetarian menu and was promised one for the next evening. The next evening the waiter, a good man, gave me the vegetarian menu before being called away. When he returned, he took the menu away and told me it was only for people with allergies. It may have been a language problem, but I was not allowed to see the vegetarian menu again. One evening there was literally only one dish that was marked vegetarian and it was not a main, but a side of sauteed mushrooms. The buffet was not better, as the food was always lukewarm, including the salad bar. Our cabin, though the decor was dated, was comfortable and roomy, with plenty of storage including space for the suitcase under the bed. We had booked a balcony guarantee and received a premium cabin, 5192. We usually use a nightlight in the cabin, but the helpful gap between the door and the floor kept the room comfortably lit throughout the night. Fortunately, the head of the bed was not in a direct line with the door, so we were able to sleep. The incident with the beer came back to haunt us, as we noticed a spurious charge on our final bill marked “mini-bar”. We never, ever use the mini-bar, so we challenged this right away. At first we were told that a beer had been taken from the mini-bar, which we said was ridiculous since we had a drinks package and could get all the beer they would serve us. Then, after a 20-minute wait, we were told we had ordered a beer from room service. We mentioned the mystery beer delivery at 6 a.m. and after another 10 minute discussion, we were finally told it would be removed from our final bill. I asked for a copy of the new final bill but was told that it could not be done because Corporate had to approve it. We’ll see when the credit card bill arrives. The ship shows signs of age, and every trip to the public restrooms resulted in at least one unpleasant confrontation with a clearly non-functioning toilet. Which points out the greatest problem with this ship in my opinion, and that is the fact that 853 crew is not enough to create a comfortable and pleasant cruise experience for 2600+ passengers. We were happy we didn’t pay full price for this cruise, with our costs coming to just about 100 a day per person, but we felt really sorry for a couple we met who had paid 200+ a day per person. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We selected a long cruise taking us through the Mediterranean, around the English Channel and through the Baltic sea to St Petersburg. The itinerary was good and because we selected an outside balcony cabin, we were quite comfortable ... Read More
We selected a long cruise taking us through the Mediterranean, around the English Channel and through the Baltic sea to St Petersburg. The itinerary was good and because we selected an outside balcony cabin, we were quite comfortable throughout the journey. The ship itself is a large liner and pretty much to the standard you'd expect. Entertainment is, well, entertaining and our cabin staff were friendly and helpful as you'd expect. However it kind of goes down hill from there! From day 1 the embarkation, on-board organisation and meal experience was disastrous. (1) Embarkation was 3 hours standing in queues despite some elderly people we noticed having a lot of difficulty. There were no crew members checking on the health and happiness of guests and a bit of care and HR in this regard (maybe some water thrown in) would have done heaps toward the initial experience. Perhaps Costa should realise that the first experience is critical. (2) Many waiters, bar staff and service centre staff are rude and should be made to walk the plank. We understand that working 11 hrs per day for 6 months on end, whilst (apparently) on minimal wages will toll heavily on most people. However, they're pretty much a surly unhelpful lot. It's hard to put this into words as no particular incidents stand out from the rest. Basically it's an attitude problem. With the exception of some, you get the feeling they just don't like you. Maybe they should go somewhere else? Maybe management should take a good look at this problem? (3) Tours and Cost-a-lot. The magic show isn't restricted to the theatre. In-fact, there's lots of "slight of hand" when it comes to this part of the cruise. Cost-a-lot arranged shuttle buses in every port to take people to and from town centres for about Euros 15 each person. In most cases town was quite close and could be walked or public transport was available for 1/10th of that price. When querying this prior to docking, Cost-a-lot excursions desk referred you to the help desk and vice versa with no-one apparently knowledgeable of where they were heading or willing to give advice. The on-board shops were a rip off to which we fell victim. We purchased 2 Invicta watches, which were said to be discounted by 75%. During the purchase i asked if the discount was genuine or not. We were assured it was. It wasn't at all! When researched we found that we could have purchased these same watches from various retailers cheaper than what we did and without any discount. We also noticed that the alleged 75% off was offered to guests coming on board throughout different parts of the trip as a "once day flash sale". This is a good trick Cost-a-lot! In Australia, we call it lying. (4) Food and Restaurants. OMG! The Bellagio Buffet (the zoo) is something to write about. The food from cruise start to finish is lacklustre and cold. Don't be late, though! If you don't covet a table and defend it with your life a good 45 minutes before it opens, you'll wait 20 minutes in line before you get something to eat. Pushing and queue jumping is normal. Piling food on plates is normal - then because it's too much to eat, discarded. One tip i have for "the zoo" is to have the salads in a different place to that of being before the hot food containers. This will alleviate people standing at the front of the line picking and choosing a bit of this and that cheese and lettuce whilst there's 200 people behind them waiting to get some hot food. The Bellagio needs a total revamp. Sit down restaurants were more civilised and the food was okay for the most part. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We chose this cruise because we wanted to visit Scandinavia, but not at the luxury level. We covered Stockholm, Copenhagen, Amsterdam, UK, France, Portugal and Spain, albeit for only a few hours each. Our Balcony stateroom was great, the ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we wanted to visit Scandinavia, but not at the luxury level. We covered Stockholm, Copenhagen, Amsterdam, UK, France, Portugal and Spain, albeit for only a few hours each. Our Balcony stateroom was great, the ship itself is attractive, entertainment very good and the staff were mostly personable. We were an hour late docking in Amsterdam - back and forth many times until they found the right dock...and blamed it on (the minimal) fog. Many people were late to their excursions, which resulted in backing up 1st seatings. Internet was non-existent unless you paid $10/day, and I heard a passenger complain that it didn't work anyway. In Amsterdam, the crew acted like they had never tried to sort people for cruises before - resulting in total chaos and people very late for their excursions. Coffee and "juice" (diluted imitation junk( were not available during buffet hours - water only. I expected, this being an Italian ship, that we would experience great Italian food - no. Very bland, tasteless pasta dishes, servings were made to look artistic to disguise the fact that you were getting about enough to feed a bird. Sometimes the meat was so tough we couldn't cut it with a knife. I could go on, but you get the picture. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
My wife and I booked this and it's following cruise through a travel agents promotion in Australia. It looked like a good deal at the time. I have been on cruises with several other companies which have all been good. After ... Read More
My wife and I booked this and it's following cruise through a travel agents promotion in Australia. It looked like a good deal at the time. I have been on cruises with several other companies which have all been good. After booking this cruise we looked at cruise critic and were a bit shocked at some of the reviews which led us to be apprehensive about the trip. The embarkation was ok as it can be a bit chaotic on any cruise. On checking out the ship on arrival we were impressed overall especially the cabin which looked like it had just had a refit. After that it was all down hill. You cannot get an ice cream on board unless you pay for it not even in the main dinning room with dinner. You basically have to pay for everything extra. I always have a sauna when on the ship. When I couldn't access the sauna I enquired and was informed that it was 25Euro a day to use it which is a ridiculous amount to use a sauna for half an hour. No wonder the sauna looked unused. I have never paid for the use of the sauna before. Now for the real bad. The bistro was the most unbelievable place you could ever imagine. There is no hygiene control. No one uses the chemical supplied to sterilise their hands when entering the bistro. People touch food, cutlery and plates with their hands without using same. There are signs to show entry and exit but no one uses this. It is a free for all, pushing in to the middle of the que and going up the wrong way is just normal. It is normal to get pushed aside by people who think they have right of way. There are no staff as in other cruise lines controlling this. On other cruise a gloved staff member hands out the plate and cutlery after you have sterilised your hands. I don't know if this is normal on Italian cruse lines but the amount of food taken off the ship by people going on day trips staggered me. It looked like they were feeding a hoard. It was normal to see cruisers off the ship sitting eating the food from the breakfast session in the middle of cities we visited. Gratuities on this cruise line are compulsory and enforced and as such should be included in the fare not added on. In this case I would not have paid any gratuities as I found the food average, entertainment average and the service in most cases average. Mostly Italian is spoken during shows and entertainment which is a real problem for english speaking cruisers. Shore excursions were expensive. This is a cruise line built for Italians and only Italians. In my opinion if you are not Italian don't use this company. If Costa wants to improve it's image it needs to change its business format becoming an International cruise company catering for all nationalities. In its present format I cannot see Costa prospering as a major cruise line. The only area of the ship I liked and enjoyed was the Piano Bar. The staff in this bar were the most efficient and personable on the whole ship making it a pleasure to go there each night before and after dinner. Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
Chose this cruise because of the ports it was visiting. Beautiful ship, although dated with some maintenance needed. Hygiene was not enforced, there were plenty of containers full of hand cleanser but rarely used. At the buffet people just ... Read More
Chose this cruise because of the ports it was visiting. Beautiful ship, although dated with some maintenance needed. Hygiene was not enforced, there were plenty of containers full of hand cleanser but rarely used. At the buffet people just dived in with hands to get food even though serving spoons were there. Noticed many people using toilet facilities but not washing hands. Many people got gastro, flu, coughing with doctors & nurses kept busy. It felt as though English speaking guests were not welcome, activities were for European guests. Entertainment was poor with the best shows being put on at dinner by the wait staff. Enjoyed the food at restaurants, wait staff pleasant, although at times their serving was like an outdoor cafe. Children ran riot well after midnight. Many young staff on who thought everyone was deaf, so yelled loving the sound of their own voices. Reception staff were unable to solve issues raised which could have been dealt with by some FAQs. Felt they were justifying their jobs! Lacked leadership. Had to pay extra for ice cream, coffee, pizza. Photos expensive, 14 Euro. Shore excursions expensive, easier to do yourself. Spa area needs a revamp. Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
This was my first cruise with Costa (Baltic Sea 12 days), and honesty I was very sceptic about chosing this company (mostly due to the accident with Costa Concordia). We cruise a lot with our family and tried many cruise companies but ... Read More
This was my first cruise with Costa (Baltic Sea 12 days), and honesty I was very sceptic about chosing this company (mostly due to the accident with Costa Concordia). We cruise a lot with our family and tried many cruise companies but Costa surprised me totally! The ship Costa Pacifica – it is not the biggest and most splendorous one, but clean and very well maintained, which is unusual for Italian companies. Costa was bought by Carnival some time ago and you can really see the American influence on their service. My favourite place on the ship was Amarillo Cioccolateria. The best coffee is being served here, and you get advised on coffees like you were in a coffee factory! Absolutely fantastic! The swimming pool had warm water, so that children can spend hours in it and do would not get cold. ( and believe me - they do!) Waiters – nice, helpfull, always smiling We were very also positively surprised with all the maintainance services on the ship. One evening hour toilette broke down, I informed the guest service, and within 30 minutes the problem was solved! Very tasty food. You have a wide range on vegetables, bread, meet, fresh made pastas (their pastas are fantastic – my daughter was eating 2 plates of it every day! And the cook preparing them always knew what would be the best for a child). Also the food in the restaurants during the dinner was delicious! High quality, various dishes, cuisines and we were served very quickly every evening ( we were there with 5 year old child, so it was really a priority ) Entertainment. Every evening there was something worth seeing. They have an incredible tenor who was on stage 3 times during the cruise and every time got a standing ovation. Absolutely brilliant! Also on the last evening the tenor sang in the restaurant during our dinner which was a lovely goodbye for all of us. Well skilled dancers and very interesting choreography every evening. We also enjoyed the animation team. They were on duty from 10 AM till midnight every day and honesty, they kept everyone entertained. Kids club – wonderful, patient ladies who can communicate in English, German , Italian , Russian and other languages. Our daughter just loved it there. Peppa Pig is present on the ship and you can take pictures with her for your children, apart from those taken by professional photographers. That was fabulous! Not like we experienced it on other ships, where you can see the Mascot once or twice during the cruise. Children could get engaged in various activities with Peppa almost every evening, and there was a beautiful Peppa Pig playground in the top deck with pool (warm water). We were there for my husband’S birthday and he got some free “stuff” from Costa (birthday picture, cake and offer for spa treatments). Also on the gala evening we got invited to the theatre for cocktails with Captain, which was a wonderful surprise. So now we are searching for another cruise with Costa, because this was definitely worth the money and the time we spent there. I truly recommend! Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
I chose this cruise thinking it would be lovely for my moms very first cruise. Honestly the ports of call sounded more appealing than a normal med cruise. And that was my main reason for picking this cruise line. I have cruised before but ... Read More
I chose this cruise thinking it would be lovely for my moms very first cruise. Honestly the ports of call sounded more appealing than a normal med cruise. And that was my main reason for picking this cruise line. I have cruised before but always with American ships (Carnival in particular)So was expecting high standards. In fairness the crew were very sweet and did everything they could to make the cruise enjoyable in particular the staff at embarkation and disembarkation very helpful to my elderly mother taking her hand on and off the ramp, Our waiter in the evening Dsilva Dolree did his very best to ensure our dining was pleasant. (The food was generally exceptionally disappointing) And our cabin crew lovely and helpful. My main complaints were food related. Bland at best and over salted at worst. The same Italian staples came out at lunch each day same sandwiches same hams cheeses etc. I understand its an Italian ship but they need to cater to those of us that are not Italian. We don`t all love tasteless over-salted pasta. Or a main course for dinner without vegetables. There was plenty of melon on board and plenty of apples and pineapple so I cannot complain about the fruit however a variety would be nice instead of same oh same oh at every lunch and breakfast. Most people go on a cruise for the food drink and entertainment. In all of these I`m afraid i found the Magica totally lacking. (I`m not a drinker so honestly didn't pay for a drinks package because it would have been a waste) hate to say this but will not use Costa again I think I will stick to the American cruises there is no comparison . they know how to entertain and how to put on beautiful edible meals. Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
Just very shortly: A cabin with a window means that the window looks at the side of a tender boat just half a meter away. It totally blocks all view, the cabin practically equals an inside cabin. We were given a shady explanation on ... Read More
Just very shortly: A cabin with a window means that the window looks at the side of a tender boat just half a meter away. It totally blocks all view, the cabin practically equals an inside cabin. We were given a shady explanation on some sort of a "lottery" for guaranteed cabins, which means that Costa can give you worse cabins you thought you had paid for. Quite interesting practice from consumer protection point of view. So avoid guaranteed cabins and cabins on Deck 4. Otherwise the cabin was clean, well maintained. There are many levels of available satellite internet services, we chose the one that allows social media use. It was unreliable, sometims totally out. The weather forecast on the CCTV is apparently not updated, unreliable. The buffet breakfast/lunch/dinner all are surprisingly poor as compared to our Celebrity and TUI experience. The restaurant seems to be too small for this number of guests, at the same time some service stations do not seem to be opened. The excursionas and the boarding are well organised. The shows/entertainment are fine. The service charge is hefty and I wonder how much of it is actually given to the personnel. Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
Yes, It Can be Sweet in a Costa Suite We are recently back from a nine day Costa Mediterranea cruise to the Norwegian fjords. We typically sail HAL, Celebrity, or RCI and usually in a balcony cabin. To be honest, the reviews have kept ... Read More
Yes, It Can be Sweet in a Costa Suite We are recently back from a nine day Costa Mediterranea cruise to the Norwegian fjords. We typically sail HAL, Celebrity, or RCI and usually in a balcony cabin. To be honest, the reviews have kept me away from considering Costa. This time we were traveling with another couple and were looking for an itinerary that departed from and returned to Amsterdam. Costa fit the bill. We booked this cruise less than two months out due to a last minute change in plans. As this cruise was a few days shorter we were able to book a suite for about the same price as our balcony cabin on the other line. If you enjoy traveling to Europe and the pricing is within your budget, sailing in a Costa suite will be a very similar experience to the other lines I have mentioned. It could even be better if you don’t usually book a suite. Embarkation in Amsterdam We arrived around 12:30 and check-in took about 20 minutes. We had one family member with mobility issues so the combination of this along with priority boarding sped things along. We then took the lift up to Deck 9 for lunch in the buffet. When we arrived in our cabin an hour later our luggage had been delivered and the security video was playing on the TV in anticipation of the muster drill, which would be held before our late afternoon sail away. Cabin Our cabin was a corner aft on deck four. The layout consisted of a sofa and desk area, a dressing area with walk-in closet, the attractively tiled bathroom had dual sinks and combo tub/shower with sliding door, and the bedroom was adjacent to that with its own TV and drawer space. We found the bed comfortable. The huge balcony had two chairs with footstools as well as two loungers and small table to hold your drinks, snacks, phone etc. Décor colors in the room were a bit retro but I loved the small Murano lamps. Plenty of storage space, a safe, and frig also. The non-alcohol mini bar and bottled water are one of your amenities. Demographics No worries if you only speak English as the hard working staff were multi-lingual. Italian was the primary language followed by English, French, and German. We didn’t feel it was that tedious for announcements but you can appreciate the effort made for entertaining everyone! On this sailing there were mostly Europeans, and though many also spoke English, aside from the staff you didn’t hear a lot of English spoken among the guests. Don’t let that deter you as the daily “Diario di Bordo,” menu, and signage are also offered in multiple languages. Food & Drink I attribute our positive cruise experience to two perks included in our Costa suite amenities, the Intenditore drink package and the Medusa (suite) restaurant where suite guests can eat B-L-D. This doesn’t mean you can’t grab a burger in the buffet at lunchtime or order room service. We were able to get coffee, water, a cocktail, or glass of wine /beer anytime we wanted from the bars or at meal time in the rstaurants. We found the food in the suite restaurant to be quite good and except for a few sugary cocktails were never disappointed in our drinks. The Medusa Restaurant was for suite guests but could also be purchased as a dinner package for other guests, though suite guests would get priority seating. We usually arrived for dinner around seven and never had to wait or make a reservation. There are no other specialty restaurants on this ship. The space held about 100 people and had a variety of table configurations. Each night featured choices from a particular region of Italy. A copy of the Medusa menu was delivered ahead of time to your room. It was a four course meal but that can be filling so we started to order two of the “primi” courses for the table to share among the four of us and that worked well. Food is always subjective but the consensus among us was that the seafood, pork, or lamb were always very good. The steak, which was an option every night, was not so tender. There was also a “Chef’s Choice” menu option that you could order or swap around for some of the a la carte choices. Wine by the glass was part of our drink package and there were a few that we particularly liked. We often would pair a different wine with a different course so a benefit of “by the glass.” There were also vegetarian food options offered each night. Sufficient staff made it a pleasure to have a relaxing dinner. We usually chose the Medusa restaurant for breakfast and one day for lunch. There is a cold buffet station as well as a pastry table in addition to ordering hot choices off the menu. The food is quite good but hope you aren’t in a hurry! The hold up appeared to be on the kitchen end not in the dining room. We did have lunch in the Perla del Lago buffet restaurant a few times. My favorite was to select ham, cheese, and choice of bread and build your own sandwich. There were also a variety of salads, pizza, and burgers. Lunch is served noon-2:30 pm. Between 4-5 pm the Perla del Lago opens for “La Merenda” or afternoon snack. You will find people cueing up for little sandwiches and pastries. If you aren’t eating in the Medusa restaurant for dinner, the Main Dining Room seating is either 6:15 pm or 9pm. Between 7pm-1am you can purchase a higher quality burger or pizza in the designated section of the La Perla buffet restaurant. The informal dinner option is in the buffet restaurant on deck 9 between 7-8:30pm. Crepes are also available for purchase between 10pm-midnight. The bars are open late, midnight and some beyond. A lot of the reviews I’ve read are filled with complaints about the food, paying for water, not having coffee available etc. I think a “must do” item is to clip the sunshine yellow “Buon Appetito” guide in the daily “Diario” and keep it handy until you sort where and when the meals are available. There are many options but limited timing so you don’t want to be disappointed. Having the premium drink package included avoided really simplified things. Life on Board If you have cruised before you know what your expectations are. I will just mention a few things that stood out for me. We were cruising at the end of summer so you knew children would be onboard. There is the Squok Club to keep them entertained. This was also a colder climate so not everyone was in the pool and there were no chair hogs. The ship is lively. At night there were multiple venues with live music. The dance floor was actually a good size for a ship. In fact, as we were getting off a dance workshop group was getting ready to board. Drink service was adequate but they weren’t pestering you if you just wanted to sit and listen for a bit. Photographers were around taking pictures but they were less intrusive and didn’t pester you to buy. A few of ours actually came out nice and we did buy them with a package that also included the digital version. We had a minor issue with our club number and they fixed it on the spot! Room service was on time and nothing missing. Tender tickets were given out the day before saving time the day of. This is an older ship so didn’t have the specialty restaurants that are popular on newer chips. The spa had treatment rooms but not much space for relaxing around the whirlpool. The gym had a variety of equipment. The theater was nice and we went to a couple of shows which were good. We were invited to a wine tasting which was fun to do on a sea day and they even served grapes and cheese to go along. There also was a large attractive game room area that was popular with people playing board games, cards, etc. Accessibility As I mentioned earlier, a family member had mobility problems. We booked too late to get an accessible room. We booked a Panoramic Suite and were able to accommodate both a mobility scooter from Special Needs at Sea, wheelchair, and walker in the cabin. As the tub was fairly deep, we inquired with our attendant if they had a step to assist getting in the tub. The next day we were given a two foot long step that served the purpose. Getting ashore on the two tender stops was also possible with the help of the crew lifting the wheelchair onto the tender and our fortune of having calm seas. Ports-our intent was for relaxing port visits rather than action packed Bergen-able to get ashore with a mobility scooter; docked in Jekteviken close enough to town to walk to cable car which also has a lift and allows for access to the top where there are shops and a café. Olden-Tender, very scenic; spent time taking photos Andalsnes-able to go onshore with mobility scooter. This was also scenic but not a lot to do unless you plan an excursion. We walked along the lake; The train station is very near where the ship docked and is accessible for wheelchairs and smaller mobility scooters. Check the timetable for return. Geiranger-This was our second visit here. Able to get around with mobility scooter. Very scenic and great ice cream! Two of us walked up along the waterfall trail near where the ship is docked. Great photo ops. Look for the goats nearby! There is also a very nice artist’s studio, Geiranger Gallery, between the waterfall and the mainstreet . It is not clustered with the other tourist shops and cafes but set back a little on the left as you walk towards the fall. A nice choice of quality gifts, pottery, and glass objects. Stavanger-One of my favorite port stops; Visit the old section of town where the white houses are. We were docked nearby. The streets are quite steep so not accessible with a mobility scooter and would be difficult with a wheelchair. If you can walk up, after you visit the white houses continue to walk to Breidablikk Mansion on Eiganesveien, 40A. It is about a 25 minute walk through a beautiful neighborhood to see this well preserved home with most of the original furnishings. Your ticket will than allow you to enter many of the other small museums in town for either half price or less. Back in the town center the walkways are flat. You will find the Stavanger Cathedral here and a large shopping area. Bremerhaven-a brief stop to disembark and embark some passengers. It was a Sunday morning and rainy so stayed onboard. There was a shuttle available for €12 r/t to the center of town about 4.5 km away. Tickets must be purchased on the ship at the kiosks or Hospitality Desk. Maximum waiting time was 40 minutes. Disembarkation- Your cabin must be vacated by 8am but you could still enjoy breakfast at the appropriate restaurant, in our case the Medusa Restaurant. There was also a hand luggage deposit for you to use so you didn’t have to bring everything with you to breakfast. After breakfast we left the ship and retrieved our luggage in the Customs Hall in Amsterdam. In summary, I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised with my Costa Cruise experience. It definitely was value for money in this category. Their shorter itineraries to different ports could work for us and I am interested to try some of their newer, larger ships. But, I would probably only do so with the Intenditore Drink Package, access to a smaller restaurant venue and not the MDR……fingers crossed for a sweet, suite deal! Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
I choose costa magica 7 day of Baltic because sdate match for my daughter and wife holiday. I hope this ship is her first cruise made them happy. Last year I and my mother cruise with costa fortuna .We appreciated that ship but nor for ... Read More
I choose costa magica 7 day of Baltic because sdate match for my daughter and wife holiday. I hope this ship is her first cruise made them happy. Last year I and my mother cruise with costa fortuna .We appreciated that ship but nor for costa magica. First at embarkation the officer forgot to stamp complete in boarding ticket and I have to return after X ray. Lunch buffet are hot dog and hamberger but tomato ketchup and mayonaise are inadequate. Dinner no ice cream tea or coffee. Supper has only pizza veg/ham cheese. After midnight has only milk /tea. Entertainment nearly half are non english song but no asian. Gym has some malfunction equipment. inside cabin is small but clean.Port @ stockholm helsinki st peterberg tallin are good. I travel by myself I take uber is good. in St peterberg I takeTaxo vichof for service in hour based have a big problem because call center hot good in english. The last and the most not appreciated is before i disembarkation I check money credit on board gratitude and internet price. It is correct. But 3 day after the credit card officer phone me in midnight because someone try to use my credit card . Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
Already Booked?

Get to know who you’ll be sailing with

Find a Cruise

Easily compare prices from multiple sites with one click