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7 Costa Crete (Heraklion) Cruise Reviews

*6= Having booked this Cruise as part of a 2 week package including a week on Crete we were slightly nervous of what to expect as the Price was ridiculously cheap even having upgraded to outside Cabins.We were a party of 3 as we took our ... Read More
*6= Having booked this Cruise as part of a 2 week package including a week on Crete we were slightly nervous of what to expect as the Price was ridiculously cheap even having upgraded to outside Cabins.We were a party of 3 as we took our disabled 84 y.o. mother (who is totally wheelchair dependent) and this in itself can be problematical if things don't go smoothly with Transport,Transfers,Access,etc. From the moment we stepped on Board until the very last moment we disembarked we had NO criticisms or disappointments with the Ship & its' Crew & the whole experienced surpassed our expectations. The Ship is awe inspiring in the Decor & Flamboyant "renaissance" styling of most recent Italian Cruise Lines & the lay-out is excellent with all 3 Lift Stations (Bow Mid-Ships & Stern) giving swift & easy access to all amenities. The Food & Service were impeccable especially as my Wife has Coeliac Disease & cannot tolerate any Gluten or wheat items....there was always ample & delicious options during the day & the Evening Dinner was a unique Menu individually prepared by the Ship's dedicated Special diet Chef. The Ports of Call varied from Dirty Industrial Docks (Limassol) to beautiful Scenic Harbours (Rhodes) but we couldn't partake of any of the excursiosn as none were WheelChair friendly......this did however mean that we thoroughly enjoyed the quiet & peace of a mostly deserted sunDeck on most days. The Drinks on board are seriously over priced as individual untis from the Bars but this is easily overcome by any of the Range of Drinks "packages" on offer and by far the best VFM option would be the all inclusive deal at E19.50 per person per day. In summary a fabulous Ship with amazing Service,Great Food & INCREDIBLE value for money....we will certainly travel again with COSTA Read Less
Sail Date October 2013
Our second cruise this year with Costa and probably our last. We embarked at Heraklion on 25th October and, with hindsight, this experience set the tone for the entire cruise. The queue to check in and deposit luggage was not particularly ... Read More
Our second cruise this year with Costa and probably our last. We embarked at Heraklion on 25th October and, with hindsight, this experience set the tone for the entire cruise. The queue to check in and deposit luggage was not particularly long so we thought we'd be on board quite quickly, we were wrong! We waited in line for around two hours whilst 1 person checked passports etc. and one luggage scanner was in use despite there being other staff around. Not a great start but sadly indicative of the very poor organisation on this ship and cruise. Once on board we noticed our Costa cards were not marked for 'all inclusive' (happened on the previous Costa cruise also) so we had to queue again to get this rectified so we could get a drink, the system was up to date so only one card could be changed and we had to go back later and queue yet again! This is despite us having booked 'all inclusive' some weeks before on line. Next we went to change our dinner sitting as we'd been allocated to the early mealtime (no means to do this before you arrive on the Costa website - why?) - the Maitre De was so disorganised (a common theme) despite us heading to sort this out in the early afternoon and could only manage to offer a 'turn up and be allocated card' - so again another wasted time in a queue. The dinner service that night, on an ad hoc table, was appalling with no choice of wine etc. and extreme difficulty getting wine or water in any case. Next night we were allocated a regular table which was better but the drinks service in the restaurant remained abysmal throughout the cruise, and this is despite my complaining to the restaurant manager which I was loathe to do. Our table of 8 had to have one of us leave the table regularly if we wanted a top up of water or wine (often there was none in the wine bucket in any case) and this seemed to be common in the restaurant. There seemed to be just two waiters for at least 6 tables so, however hard they tried, they just couldn't keep up. Costa cost cutting maybe? The same was true in the bars and self service restaurants at lunch where bar service waiters were hard to find so the only way to get a drink was to go to the bar and fight your way through the crowd - not exactly relaxing! I'm guessing this is down to Costa cutting costs as our previous cruise in April this year had good service - I suppose it could be down to very poor officers on this ship but I doubt we'll use Costa again to find out. I'd think long and hard before you book with Costa as we will next time. Read Less
Sail Date October 2013
This was my first Costa cruise. I’ve cruised on nearly all the other cruise lines including MSC, another European cruise line. I wasn’t sure what to expect and was pleasantly surprised and very much enjoyed the cruise. The ship was in ... Read More
This was my first Costa cruise. I’ve cruised on nearly all the other cruise lines including MSC, another European cruise line. I wasn’t sure what to expect and was pleasantly surprised and very much enjoyed the cruise. The ship was in good condition, our oceanview room was fairly typical of other cruise lines, the main dining food was very good and the breakfast and lunch buffet was OK. The premium pay restaurant, Club Medusa, was excellent. The entertainment was in line with most US cruise lines. Keep in mind the Med cruises are very much different than the Caribbean cruises, so daytime entertainment is tamer. If you want to party, skip the cruise and head to Ibiza or Mykonos. The ship had several pools, hot tubs, Spa, excellent gym, shops, etc. I think there are some differences between Costa and MSC, who mainly market to the Europeans, and the US cruise lines sailing in the Med. First, nearly all the passengers were from Europe so all announcements are made in six languages. The ship had roughly 2300 passengers and we met only two other Americans. Second, the only dinner option is the main dining area. No dinner buffet, so if you have the early seating and get back to the ship after 7pm, late night pizza or paid room service are the only options. Third, the shore excursion options may be limited since they will only offer an English speaking tour if there are enough English speaking people taking the tour. This didn’t affect us since we normally don’t take the cruise line shore excursions, but beware if you do. Embarkation was very fast since we boarded off peak time in Heraklion, Crete. The port is right in downtown Heraklion. You may need to take a free short shuttle bus ride from the terminal building to the ship. You drop your luggage off at the terminal building before getting on the shuttle bus. There is an emergency drill your first night. Since Alanya, Turkey was not on the port of call listing, I am including in the ship review. Alanya, Turkey: This was the sleeper port of the cruise. I wasn’t expecting much and was pleasantly surprised. Great beaches, stunning mountain scenery, magical coastal views, a hilltop castle, Roman and Greek ruins, white water rafting, waterfalls and a quaint waterside area with cafes, shops and a scenic harbor. You can even ski if there in the winter. Definitely take a boat tour (one to five hours). The best beach is Cleopatra, a 20 minute walk from the ship or a few minute taxi ride. If interested in archeology, visit Side and some of the area ruins via private taxi or shore excursion. Disembarkation: Very organized and no issues. They will actually allow you to stay on board until 6pm if you have a late flight, but you need to vacate your cabin by 8am.   Read Less
Sail Date October 2013
The boarding was a little shambolic especially when the baggage scanner packed in and they tried pushing all luggage through the hand baggage X-ray, total chaos ensued. Eventually got through this one and bussed to another queue in a ship ... Read More
The boarding was a little shambolic especially when the baggage scanner packed in and they tried pushing all luggage through the hand baggage X-ray, total chaos ensued. Eventually got through this one and bussed to another queue in a ship side marque that turned out to be for the pre-boarding snap, not a happy picture! Glad to say it all improved from then onwards. This was our second Costa cruise, the first was on the Favalosa, the Mediterranea is a slightly older ship, but equally as impressive. Cabin (inside) was spacious, clean and well maintained. An issue with the beds was quickly resolved. If you like a couple of drinks during the day and wine at dinner I would always recommend the package My only small criticism of the Costa experience would be the evening dining; unlike some other cruise lines it is not the occasion it could be. The food it of a good quality it's just they serve it so fast, as soon as one you finishes a course the next is served meaning some were almost on their sweets whilst others were 3 courses back. The wine bottle is no longer left on the table prompting regular reminders to the waiter.   Read Less
Sail Date October 2013
We embarked on the ship in Heraklion, having flown in from London. We travelled as a family of 3 (myself, my wife and my 10-year old daughter, who is in a wheelchair). The embarkation in Crete was what I would consider to be the worst part ... Read More
We embarked on the ship in Heraklion, having flown in from London. We travelled as a family of 3 (myself, my wife and my 10-year old daughter, who is in a wheelchair). The embarkation in Crete was what I would consider to be the worst part of the cruise. Heraklion is not really geared up to be a cruise port but more of a ferry terminal. The small embarkation building meant that some people were queuing outside in the heat for more than an hour before being able to enter the building. The whole process was very slow, a bit chaotic and quite uncomfortable. Once onboard the ship things improved considerably. We were able to go straight to our cabin and our luggage joined us almost immediately. The interior of the ship is beautifully decorated and, although 10 years old, did not give this impression. The cabin was quite small but was cosy and served our needs. The cabin steward kept the cabin immaculately clean and our only gripe (other than perhaps the size) was that the air conditioning was not very effective, meaning that the cabin (being an inside) was a bit warm for us at night, especially as there were 3 of us in the cabin. The beds were, however, comfortable. Despite the small size, we were able to pack the luggage in the wardrobes and had just enough space to park the wheelchair without folding (we had requested a wheelchair accessible cabin but were told these were all booked, despite the ship only being 60 to 65% full). We found the Costa staff to be very approachable, friendly and helpful throughout the cruise, especially in the restaurant. The only niggle we had was the cruise excursion desk telling us that because we had a wheelchair we couldn't go on our planned excursion in Santorini, and advising us not to go ashore on the tender boat. Our cabin steward informed us that we would be able to take the cable car to the summit as they cater for disabled. we took the plunge and went ashore and did not regret doing so. Read Less
Sail Date October 2013
This was the 1st time we had sailed with Costa and it will be our last. The worst meals on board were dinner, if you didn't like the food served in the restaurant you were pretty stuck as the buffet restaurant wasn't open in the ... Read More
This was the 1st time we had sailed with Costa and it will be our last. The worst meals on board were dinner, if you didn't like the food served in the restaurant you were pretty stuck as the buffet restaurant wasn't open in the evening. The food wasn't that great in the restaurant most of the meat dishes didn't come with vegetables or salad, the food was luke warm some were cold you had to request the vegetables and when they did arrive they consisted of onions and aubergines and nothing else. very little choice on the menus. The only drinks you could have in the restaurant were wine, beer or water. If you wanted something else you had to go and get it yourself from the bar. The buffet wasn't always open and they closed it at odd times during the day with no other options for the passengers to eat. If you were late getting in because you had been on an organized trip nothing was open the buffet closed at 5pm and the snack bar was also closed only the bars served drinks. The majority of the staff were pleasant, some of the waiting staff however in the buffet restaurant were rude and abrupt. The safety issues seem to have been addressed and i was comfortable with the lifeboat drills etc, the only thing on that though however they did say it in about 7 different languages, which could be interesting in an emergency situation. The entertainment was dismal, the majority of the passengers were rude arrogant Italians and you certainly felt outnumbered we had only one rep who was called Tamaye she was lovely and very helpful. One of the dutch girls was also very friendly and came with us on one of the trips. The trips that Costa provided were good and the local tour guides that they used in the main were very knowledgeable. We had an outside cabin and the room was clean and very pleasant, the bed however was rock hard. The ship was clean and well designed with lots of seating areas and bars. The were several pools and hot tubs all very clean. the deck was well designed with lots of sun beds, bars etc. I have been with several different companies in the past and the best so far was Princess they are leaps and bounds ahead of Costa even though they are both owned by carnival.   Read Less
Sail Date September 2013
If you are happy to be part of 10 per cent British people the other 90 per cent were Italian German, French and Russian, that's fine and you are happy to see entertainment in anything but English! The food was nothing great and the ... Read More
If you are happy to be part of 10 per cent British people the other 90 per cent were Italian German, French and Russian, that's fine and you are happy to see entertainment in anything but English! The food was nothing great and the so called Lamb Shank on the last night on a bed of Smash Potato was horrendous. Cabin Steward very very accommodating though. The Cabin was comfortable, but on the last day (changeover) toilets overflowing, no paper, no soap...pools netted off, just chaos, and to have to be out of your cabin and on the pier to check cases at 8AM.... disgusting never happed with P and O. And if On the last day on Changeover day you like getting out of the Cabin at 8AM, and can put up with overflowing toilets, no soap in the dispensers, no toilet rolls..... MMM. never again with Costa. Give me P and O every time. This is our sixth Cruise and the worst...... Read Less
Sail Date September 2013
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