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14 Costa Mediterranea Europe - Western Mediterranean Cruise Reviews

My family had wanted to take a Mediterranean cruise for years, and after completing six domestic cruises in the U.S., we decided to finally take a giant leap over the pond for a European cruise. Simply put, when booking with Costa, shame ... Read More
My family had wanted to take a Mediterranean cruise for years, and after completing six domestic cruises in the U.S., we decided to finally take a giant leap over the pond for a European cruise. Simply put, when booking with Costa, shame on me for not doing research; I was unaware I was booking with the European version of Celebrity Cruises! Upon onboard it, our first impression was that the Costa Mediterranea ship was beautifully ornate and visually impressive. Making our way to our state room began the awful experience. As written in previous reviews, there’s an extra charge for everything. The deck hallways leading to staterooms smell like stale arm pit, the carpet look water damaged as though previously flooded, and you choose whether you want to see your service person in the morning or evening. There is no in between service should a need arise. The buffet has limited up offerings, and even more limited hours of availability. The food was terrible and low quality. The formal dining menu basically offers up the same foods rotated or moved to different portions of the menu. By day two, I had an extreme case of food poisoning. The infirmary was closed more than half the day, and then it was over €100 just to walk in the door. Passengers are on boarding and off boarding at every stop, so there is a constant passenger rotation and confusion. The staff do not warm up to you, are unfriendly, and not customer service minded, but who could blame them when they are constantly dealing new faces every day. We had the opportunity of befriending a member of the staff, I will not mention where they worked, who shared the very low morale and dissatisfaction of many employees. Most cannot wait for their contracts to end. Two of our three excursions were canceled, the paid wine tasting activity we signed up for was canceled, the Internet service is extremely poor, and while we were away physically off board on our one excursion all of our remaining megabytes had somehow been used up! It took elevating to management to get resolution. I could go on, but in the essence of time, please seriously consider other cruise options. Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
This cruise came up as part of a very cheap package deal including flights and 2 nights in Barcelona. I had read some reviews and my expectations were not high but for the money I wouldn't have complained if we got 2 hammocks above ... Read More
This cruise came up as part of a very cheap package deal including flights and 2 nights in Barcelona. I had read some reviews and my expectations were not high but for the money I wouldn't have complained if we got 2 hammocks above the engines. As it was we got upgraded to a balcony - a first for us, and very nice too. Most of the complaints I'd read about Costa focused on food and service. From my experience food was good but Italian. A different region every night but each region was Italian. The MDR was relaxed and mostly competent - a couple of waiters were even funny although a couple only spoke minimal English. The buffet a different story. Initially it was bedlam and the food suffered from sitting under lamps for long periods - it could have been refreshed moire often. It was also badly laid out with people having to double back to find things they had missed (like sugar and milk at the opposite end from the tea/coffee machines). Likewise cutlery was scattered around randomly with forks and knives in one place, spoons in another, and teaspoons elsewhere - with no obvious link to the food around them. Then, after taking on extra passengers in Savona, it deteriorated into utter chaos. There clearly were not enough staff for the number of passengers and tables sat waiting to be cleared for ages - we often wound up doing it ourselves as the only way to get a table. Finally, we took the "40 non-alcoholic drinks deal" only to find it did not include water or tea or coffee - all non-alcoholic in my book! In practice it was 40 cans of fizzy pop, and even in 10 days I can't drink that many so we didn't get good value from that - Costa need to be more explicit about what is included, and what is not. Service generally was great for the first half of the cruise then after Savona everything took a downturn and the staff themselves showed it in their lack of patience. We had three separate meals where the wrong thing was served and one where the waiter persisted in serving my wife's meals to me and vice versa, despite us telling him twice. On another occasion the couple next to us wanted to leave the MDR before receiving their sweet - the waiter rushed them back to the table telling them that "this was not the buffet but a restaurant!" - I've never seen dessert eaten so quickly! The cabin was spotless and the steward efficient and nearly invisible but friendly when we did see him. Customer services were polite and efficient but not exactly friendly or welcoming. Our fellow guests were predominantly Italian and Spanish with a smaller contingent of French and German guests, in about equal numbers. There was only a scattering of Brits and Americans and a few Scandinavians, I'd guess less than 5% if the total. Most folks were friendly even if they couldn't speak English, we all muddled through with pidgin English/French/Spanish/Italian and some improvised sign language. Entertainment was to usual cruise ship standards although because we had 9 days we did find we were onto repeats for the last couple of days. The bars were sometimes a tad loud for our taste but the music was good and there were lots of dance opportunities for those who wanted to. As usual the library and card rooms were havens of tranquillity and we spent most of the sea days there with our kindles. For the price we paid it was a bargain and we'd do it again but if we were paying anything like brochure price(and we met one guy who was) we'd have been disappointed. Also the "extras" (water, tea, coffee) mounted up such that I reckon you need to add an extra £100 onto the price when comparing prices with a US line Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
We were a little worried due to some of the negative reviews that we read but are very happy that we went - my husband and 7 year old boy. We chose this cruise because we wanted a true European experience and we definitely got it! :) ... Read More
We were a little worried due to some of the negative reviews that we read but are very happy that we went - my husband and 7 year old boy. We chose this cruise because we wanted a true European experience and we definitely got it! :) There were only 52 Americans out of the 3800 on board. We also really like the ports that this cruise offered, not the traditional stops. The service as fantastic. The fact that people embarked and disembarked at each port made our embarking and disembarking very easy. There were not the huge crowds with everyone trying to get on and off the ship at the same time. The announcements were made mostly in Italian followed by English. Our balcony room was very nice and clean. The cabin steward was amazing! Made towel animals for our son which he loved. The dining options were good, we like casual so we ate at the buffet a lot. A lot of pasta!! There was a small buffet set up for a traditional American breakfast if you are craving scrambled eggs and bacon, but the European buffets were great! We read that you have to pay for water at dinner- you get water for free with dinner. Have to pay for soft drinks, cocktails etc...just like most other cruises. Excursions- we went on our own at most ports but there were English speaking tours available - make sure to specify that. The one we took to Portofino was Spanish and Italian but the guide was very kind and gave us the important information in English. Loved it! Great Experience, definitely would recommend this cruise and go again! Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
This cruise exceeded all our expectations. Accommodation, ship, staff and the food was simply some of the best I have had on my dozen cruises. The passenger make up was mainly Italian, but few English but many English speaking foreign ... Read More
This cruise exceeded all our expectations. Accommodation, ship, staff and the food was simply some of the best I have had on my dozen cruises. The passenger make up was mainly Italian, but few English but many English speaking foreign nationals. My one concern was safety. We attended the lifeboat drill, were actually some of the first there and led our line. It was disappointing to see some of the staff pay scant attention to what was going on and chatting during instructions in languages other than Italian. It also went on for 45/50 minutes, far too long. But hey when your most infamous ship is Costa Concordia why not? However, a day later we received curt letter asking why we hadn't turned up for the drill. We told reception we had been there and had time dated pictures to prove it (our family insisted we didn't miss it because of ship's reputation and we sent them pictures). They told us not to worry, but next day another letter asking why we missed a second drill and ordering us to watch something on tv and sign a form to say we had...and so it went on - and we got more and more cross. Repeated visits to reception ...to get off our backs, and while it might be considered admirable to pursue this - apparently staff should have swiped our cards on the day to show we attended. If it hadn't been an exercise they might needlessly be looking for us when we were on deck in line where we were supposed to be. Staff were very lax. So Costa clearly not learnt their lesson. Much to improve in safety marshalling. The rest was awesome and drinks package worthwhile. Really fab cruise, we managed Savonna, Milan on extra time plus Valencia (good), Palermo (dump), Naples (superb), Palma (lovely), Barcelona - speaks for itself. Entertainment was superb. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
We were so impressed by the friendly staff on this cruise who always greeted and smiled. Nothing was too much trouble. The attention to detail was amazing. I am a very large lady and the arm chair in restaurant degli Argentieri was ... Read More
We were so impressed by the friendly staff on this cruise who always greeted and smiled. Nothing was too much trouble. The attention to detail was amazing. I am a very large lady and the arm chair in restaurant degli Argentieri was slightly tight. My husband asked for soft bread due to a mouth problem. The second night without me asking they had found a chair without arms, soft bread for my husband and our drink preferences were remembered. As we do not drink alcohol we choose not to take the drinks package. On the 9th deck there are coffee and tea machines, There are water machines there as well. Breakfast is served with tea / coffee and juices. In the restaurant degli Argentieri you can ask for a jug of water - free (not bottled) and this comes with loads of ice. The food was amazing - six course dinner with adequate choice for each course. There is so much good quality food you do not need to eat during the excursions - just come back the the wonderful ship. The singing and dancing in the dining room were much fun. Up on the 9th deck there were other food choices available. Entertainment was really great and we enjoyed the shows. Did our own thing in port and did not go on the excursions. Being November it rained most of the time so we did not have much time on the open deck or try out the swimming pools. Our room was kept clean and we were well looked after. We will definitely do another Costa Cruise and are already working towards the next one.   Read Less
Sail Date November 2013
Boarded the Costa Meditterranea in Savona, as part of a group of 90 people. Embarkation was smooth and fast. The ship is very opulently done up. We travelled with 2 teenagres. Our cabins ( both) were on deck 6, balcony with ocean view. ... Read More
Boarded the Costa Meditterranea in Savona, as part of a group of 90 people. Embarkation was smooth and fast. The ship is very opulently done up. We travelled with 2 teenagres. Our cabins ( both) were on deck 6, balcony with ocean view. Superb cabins, very clean, comfortable and luxurious. I was pleasantly surprised to find a hairdryer too in the cabin.The staff are very friendly and helpful. We visited Barcelona and Marseilles and returned to Savona. Our shore excursions were not part of the ship organised ones. Since we were a large group, Indian food was also available for those who chose to have it. The pizza counter on deck 9 was wonderful, though at mealtimes, the buffet self service meal areas on deck 9 were so crowded, it was difficult to get seats.We saw a musical show and a magic show in the auditorium. Both were excellent, the auditorium itself was very nice. The last night was the grand dinner - Captain's dinner. The table settings were super, the food great, champagne was served and the crew introduced. Did not see the children's club since we travelled with our teenagers.Disembarkation too was OK, but one of our colleagues had a harrowing time. His entire family's passports (4 ) could not be traced and took about 45 ( tension filled) minutes to be sorted out.Other wise, the entire cruise was a wonderful experience. Read Less
Sail Date May 2013
We stayed in Barcelona prior to our cruise and took a taxi to the port, upon arrival we were very excited to see a large gleaming white ship in front of us to then realise that wasnt our ship..ours was the small very outdated looking one ... Read More
We stayed in Barcelona prior to our cruise and took a taxi to the port, upon arrival we were very excited to see a large gleaming white ship in front of us to then realise that wasnt our ship..ours was the small very outdated looking one at the far end of the dock.. Boarding was quick & easy.. upon arrival on the ship no one was there to greet us or to show us to the cabin it was a case of find it yourself... So a quick overview.. Cabin 6186 was ok, it was a premium cabin but I didnt notice anything premium about it. I thought it was quite large but its starting to look very dated and the carpet could do with being replaced. Our cabin Steward Fred was excellent.. Food - Awful.. truly disgusting we didnt eat properly for 5 days. Breakfast is like a cattle market you have to fight to get near the food then anything hot is barely luke warm in the end we gave up with breakfast. Lunch - ok for burgers and hotdogs but the buffet food looked unappetising.. evening meal - edible but not great, not a patch on other cruise companies. We had issues with the staff in the restaurant on the first night and wanted to eat elsewhere for the 2nd night but unfortunately there is no where else to eat at night time unless you want a slice of pizza which is available 1200-0100. Entertainment - Shows were ok but nothing much going on, hardly any daytime entertainment. One positive is the drinks package - Do it we paid I think EUR14 per day and it includes, all soft drinks, beer, wine, spirits and cocktails which were lovely. All in all.. very disappointed to the extreme we tried to book a flight home early as we couldnt wait to get off. I would not recommend this ship. Read Less
Sail Date May 2013
Boarded at Malaga, crossed Atlantic for first time and found it very relaxing but not boring. There was plenty to do and see on board. The trouble began at the first Caribbean island stop - Antigua. There were two ships in port together, ... Read More
Boarded at Malaga, crossed Atlantic for first time and found it very relaxing but not boring. There was plenty to do and see on board. The trouble began at the first Caribbean island stop - Antigua. There were two ships in port together, swamping the facilities available. This happened more often than not on the rest of the cruise- surely it is not beyond the wit of the cruise lines to arrange their schedules to avoid it? There was also the first of the totally artificial "tourist villages" - all almost identical, all full of the same Costa-sponsored jewellery and other shops. I suspect that if one checked the ownership of these places, Costa would figure. These are frequently designed so that disembarking passengers were forced to walk through them, accosted at each shop by insistent staff. At Grand Turk this was ALL that was available as the town was some distance away and closed on a Sunday! There is minimal contact with the real culture and people. The tours sold by the ship were overpriced and often poor - the coral in the "reefs" to which we were taken was usually dead or dying and the fish very few. The bus tour of Belize was an hour of viewing decrepit houses in junk and garbage-filled gardens, the bus a battered and uncomfortable ex-Dallas Greyhound coach. When we asked where the city centre was our guide told us that there was not one - certainly there are only a few, sad shops. Most passengers were back on board hours before sailing time, having found nothing of interest to do, see or visit. In Miami it was actually cheaper for four of us to share a taxi to go to the Dolphin Mall than to take Costa's tour to the same destination. In Jamaica, after docking at a ramshackle pier (we later found it was for loading bauxite!!) with corrugated metal sheets blowing gently in the breeze, we boarded the tour bus to see the only thing worth visiting, the waterfalls. On arrival there was a major shouting match between passengers who had been told that entry fee was included in the price and the crew of the bus (caught in the middle) who said it was not. Most passengers demanded the return of their money and walked back or took a taxi. We found on all the islands that frequent and amusing local buses had a network of routes at an absolutely minimum fare, usually a dollar.Ocho Rios in Jamaica was a squalid example of what 30 years of no maintenance can achieve coupled with demanding beggars and street vendors. All in all the Caribbean is over-cruised and some ports of call not worth a visit. Others such as Grand Cayman should not be missed. Read Less
Sail Date November 2012
This was our sixth cruise with Costa (Victoria, Atlantica (twice), Europa, Magica and now Mediterranea). With some 23 cruises behind us, this cruise was way below the standard of care, help, thoughtfulness and information we have ... Read More
This was our sixth cruise with Costa (Victoria, Atlantica (twice), Europa, Magica and now Mediterranea). With some 23 cruises behind us, this cruise was way below the standard of care, help, thoughtfulness and information we have experienced on other ships. The Black Sea is not exactly the "run of the mill" of itineraries and therefore the majority of passengers had not been to that area before. Unlike other ships we have been on, the daily paper, in this case "Today" can always be relied upon to give useful and helpful information about the Port being visited and particularly the safety aspect. The Today paper onboard the Costa Mediterranea said absolutely nothing, not one single word about the Port and did not even give the name of the Country!!! It merely said Constanta, Odessa, Yalta, Katakolon,Izmir, Istanbul, Mykonos. There were many first time cruisers and also first time to Costa cruisers and I doubt everyone had a degree in Geography! It said nothing about what the local currency was called or the exchange rate and whether or not they would accept euros/dollars.I soon discovered that in Odessa for example, some taxi drivers would only take euros and others would only take the local currency. The venicular (to avoid walking up 220 steps to the town) only took local currency. Most shops would accept euros. The Today paper gave no information about the city/town, taxis, local buses, stations, shops, nearness to the port, markets etc. In Odessa we were given a map of the town only to quickly find that the street names bore no resemblance to the Russian Cyrillic street names, neither did it have a compass point. I repeat, not one single mention was made about the Port. When I went down to Reception and asked why they gave no information, she said that the Today paper was only about giving information about the Ship!! It was then that I asked to see the Hotel Director, which I did the following day. He seemed quite "surprised" that it said nothing about the currency but did nothing about it in the next three Ports visited.He sent me a bottle of wine at my table, but that cut no ice with me because two days later I had a meeting with the manager of Customer Services and the last day I wrote to the Captain. Passengers got the impression that Costa was only interested in selling their excursions and had no interest if you were exploring the city on your own. To make matters worse, there were no announcements to say that it was ok to go ashore, nor were there any signs to say which deck the gangway was on or which bank of lifts to take. At Mykonos, I went to reception and asked, only to be sent to the wrong deck in the wrong part of the ship and was confronted by a large white "crew only" door. Even in their own Country, Civitiavecchia, no mention was made of the free shuttle bus which the Port provided. It was only because I saw a big sign painted on the roadway from my balcony, saying "Free Shuttle Bus" that made me enquire at Reception. Oh yes, she said, there is. It dropped you off a few hundred yards from the ship directly at the beautiful new promenade they have almost completed and by the town centre. The train station was nearby taking you to Rome for some 15 euros and yet none of this information was given...I again repeat, nothing was said about any Port. We have always had a table for two, but this time we were on a table for six and luckily we had four other lovely people on our table. However, we were always one of the last tables to finish out of the second sitting of some 1,200 passengers. The average time at the table was 2 1/2 hours and the food was, in our opinion, below average and certainly not worth sitting around for that length of time. There is no Alternative or Anytime dining, apart from Pizza, Pizza or Pizza,and soggy at that. On three nights they did provide an Alternative Buffet dinner which was quite well attended, but one of these nights was in Mykonos when we were not sailing until 11pm and therefore quite a lot of passengers had dinner ashore in that beautiful island. The meal times on this cruise were changed to fit in with the unbalanced number of German guests who prefer to eat early. Fair enough, but this altered the times of the Shows and instead of being able to enjoy the slightly cooler evening sun (we had unbroken sunshine for 13 days at around 32/35 degrees)one had to start getting ready at 6.30 so as to go to the Show at 7.15/7.30 and the 8.30 dinner.Had there been a buffet, on some nights we would have enjoyed our balcony or sundecks until later and still take in the Show. The saving grace was our Cabin on Deck 7 , 7254. By far the largest and best of any cruise. With a 27' balcony and a 20 x 12' cabin, excluding wardrobes, it was ideally situated directly opposite the bank of lifts and stairs.It was nicely furnished, good sized bathroom with excellent shower and very clean. The lifts were amazingly quick; we never waited more than about 30 seconds for a lift at any time throughout the who cruise. The Shows were pretty mediocre and not up to the standard of their other ships or other lines. Lovely theatre with great space between rows so that one never had to get up to let people get past. The other entertainment, i.e. singers and bands were very good. We flew to Nice, but had to wait over 1 1/2 hours for the coach to take us to Savona because whilst there was room for some of us on the bus, there was not enough room for our luggage. About 20 of us had to wait. On the return journey, we were told to disembark at 8.45 (the first) and yet our flight from Nice was not until 18.45. Hence we arrived at Nice about 11.30 and had to wait 7 hours. But they dropped us off at the wrong terminal. With a bad back and my wife not in great health, we had to get a shuttle bus to the other terminal..One, humping our four cases on and off the shuttle bus. I am what they call a Pearl member and was given all sorts of things; half bottle bubbly in the cabin, bowl of fresh fruit which was very nice, but we also were sent each day, complete Evening Menu. This I regarded as a complete waste of money and unnecessary expense on the part of Costa. Also we received a model of the ship, plus a 10 euro chip for the casino. In my opinion they should cut out all these "goodies" and concentrate of getting their act in order by giving the expected, needed and desired information about the Port one is visiting. Read Less
Sail Date June 2012
We have decided to go on a cruise for our first time. We checked the internet and found this very interesting deal. We embarked in Savona and observed that the ship was half empty, which was great for us. Generally the check in process was ... Read More
We have decided to go on a cruise for our first time. We checked the internet and found this very interesting deal. We embarked in Savona and observed that the ship was half empty, which was great for us. Generally the check in process was very smooth, the luggage was delivered promptly to our cabin which was quite comfortable, or at least better than what we expected. Or route had its first destination in Malaga, which is a nice town. We have decided not to waste the money on Marbella and our neighbors confirmed how right we were... We had only a few hours so we just relaxed in the old town, had a glass of wine and some delicious tapas. As a general rule I would say to be cautious in selecting the tours offered on board. They are quite expensive and some are really not worth the while. The second destination was Funchal, Madeira. Lovely! Then Teneriffa; we missed La Laguna and Teide but got ourselves at least some good deals on clothes as the VAT is very low in Teneriffa. Casablanca, is a nightmare, Marrakesh, as well... got a new carpet now :-) Then Barcelona, Wonderful; Marseille, very good as well but spending a day in Marseille on a Sunday is not quite smart as all shops are closed. Now to the Ship again: We are swiss and hence speak a lot of languages, English, french, german and italian are no problem. So we understood what the others were saying and the information the others got. It was quite upsetting that the information in the various languages is quite selective, to put it diplomatically. The majority was italian, which has its charm, given the fact that the German were like bees all over the place. The food in the restaurant was quite good given the vast amount of food that needs to be prepared every day. Our wait staff and room attendants were mainly, indonesian, philippinos, indian or peruvian and they were excellent! That needs to be said and they are a real credit to costa. Without them, I would never travel with them again. The reason is the management. I have never seen such arrogant staff in my life. I am a hotelier and I am very sensitive with these things. I have complained on the spot, asked to see the hotel Manager (which I haven't seen during the entire cruise except on a picture), the executive chef was smoking on the guest floors with his buddy the main Maitre D' etc. the list goes on and on. They would not greet, not smile, not leave the floor when guests are passing. They were generally walking with their chin above their nose. I have written a long list of "recommendations" as I am not a complainer per se. I just try to give feed back. Unfortunately, I have never received a feedback. I have even tracked down the corporate Quality improvement man who hasn't replied either. Anyway, I would recommend the tour and the company again but with keeping in mind that the management is very, very poor. I just consider ourselves very lucky as we have always good staff around us, fantastic table-mates at dinner, whom have become friends and interesting destinations discovered while returning back to work very relaxed :-) Read Less
Sail Date November 2011
On arrival at port we were herded into what is best described as a holding bay.There we sat for approx one and a half hours.Poor quality orange juice was provided in plastic cups,but no food.Things did not get better.We joined the ship to ... Read More
On arrival at port we were herded into what is best described as a holding bay.There we sat for approx one and a half hours.Poor quality orange juice was provided in plastic cups,but no food.Things did not get better.We joined the ship to a somewhat cursory welcome.Now past lunchtime we headed for the self service buffet.However no food was available as it had all been cleared away.When we asked where we could find something to eat we were told,sorry all closed now.Hot and cold water were provided when available,as more often than not the machines were empty.Tea bags were at an absolute premium.In any event only plastic cups were provided.Food in the restaurant was poor,mostly frozen,and the service not much better.Entertainment was a joke,the only highlight being the crews own show which surpassed the so called professionals by a mile.The ship was overcrowded,if you could find a seat,which was not easy,you sat in very close proximity to your neighbour.Blackpool on sea.An abundance of children who overran the ship.Adults only pool was constantly used by children.Occasional pathetic attempts to control the situation failed.The staff appeared to have a could not care less attitude.Complaints fell on deaf ears with the crew defending company policy.Just about everything was charged as extras.Smoking in just about all the recreation areas was the order of the day,the areas for non smokers were tucked away.Cabin was good but noisy on the balcony.Definitely biased to Italians who seemed to like it.Worst cruise ever.We are seasoned cruisers,but I will never set foot on a Costa cruise ever again. Read Less
Sail Date July 2011
This was a repositioning cruise from the summer northern routes to the fall Mediterranean routes. There were four of us on this cruise (2 cabins), we are all Canadians in our mid to late thirties and have all cruised before. This was ... Read More
This was a repositioning cruise from the summer northern routes to the fall Mediterranean routes. There were four of us on this cruise (2 cabins), we are all Canadians in our mid to late thirties and have all cruised before. This was our second cruise on the Mediterranea having cruised on it in 2006 in the Eastern Mediterranean. You should also know that we are pretty laid back and not particularly demanding. We purchased the X1 drink package before the trip and it was great. We really got good value for money with it. Every night we had two bottles of wine, beer, soda and bottled water with dinner. Some people have complained about slow service with the X1 package but we had excellent service. Well worth the money! We do not usually attend the formal shows on the cruises so this review will not cover that aspect of the cruise. Also before this trip we had never taken a ship organized shore excursion, we like to explore the ports on our own. We finally did take one in Lisbon, more on that later. We flew into Copenhagen two days before embarkation. Copenhagen is a nice city but very expensive. $11 for a glass of beer is a bit steep in my opinion. It is a very pleasant city for walking around. I highly recommend the Carlsberg Brewery tour for any beer lovers. Embarkation: We arrived at the port around noon and were on board within a half hour. It was the fastest boarding I have ever experienced. They told us our rooms would be available at 1:30 pm but were ready when we boarded, our luggage arrived not too long after. All in all the embarkation was awesome. Food: I have read a lot of complaints about the food on board Costa but I just don't get it. The food on board was really good. We ate in the dinning room each night (early sitting) and found the food to be of excellent quality and taste. We did not like every dish served but when trying new things you should expect this. We ate at the buffet for a few breakfast and lunches. The food was good, not spectacular but decent. We had room service one afternoon, the menu is quite limited but the Caesar salad was awesome. Bars: We would get drinks from the Bars on Deck 2 and 3 at the back of the ship. The service there was always good. We did find that the drink specials were not always great. Laundry: We all used the Laundry service at some point. It was reasonably priced and the clothes were cleaned over night and back in the room the next afternoon. The Ship: The ship itself was immaculate. I think the layout of the ship is great, it never really seemed crowded, lots of space everywhere. It was a little smoky in some of the lounges, but you could easily find non-smoky ones. The Room: I was in room 5289 at the back of the ship. It was a balcony room. I loved this room, it was quiet and clean. The steward was excellent. First day was at sea, we just ate and relaxed. We borrowed a game from the library and had a few drinks while playing, a nice relaxing day. Bring your own dice if you want to play a game that needs it, all the games in the library are missing their dice! Dover: The first port of call was Dover, England. We went to the Dover Castle and took the tour of the World War II tunnels. It was an excellent tour, highly recommended! After that we just explored the town and were back on board with a few hours to spare before sailing. Le Havre: The second stop was Le Havre, France. If you are awake we coming into port it is quite something to see how close you get to other ships when docking. We rented a car (right at the port) and drove to the D-Day beaches. First stop was The Juno Beach Center, a small but very good museum about the Canadians at D-Day, I wish we had more time but we had a lot on the agenda for that day. Second stop was Omaha Beach, the US Memorial there is quite moving, we climbed down the hill to the beach, it was amazing to imagine what the soldiers went through. After that we had a nice lunch in a near by beach town and then back to the ship. Next day was at sea, again nice and relaxing. Vigo: At Vigo, Spain we took the train to Santiago de Compestella, the burial place of St. James. It was a lot of travel to spend 10 minutes in the church where he is buried. I don't think it was worth the effort, having to do it again I would rather have just explored Vigo. Lisbon: Lisbon was fantastic! We took our first ship organized shore excursion; it was a jeep tour of Lisbon and the surrounding area. It cost $60 Euro and was worth every penny. The excursion was well organized in getting off the ship and took only a few minutes. The jeep tour itself took us through Lisbon to the cliffs outside of the city and then into the hills (offroad) and finally to a nice little hill town. It was an excellent day. Cadiz: In Cadiz, Spain we decided not to go to Seville, it was a Sunday and we figured a lot of the town would be closed. We just walked around Cadiz and the headed back to the ship for a nice relaxing day. Malaga: We disembarked in Malaga, Spain. The cruise was continuing to Savonna, Italy but due to our travel plans we arranged to leave two days early. Disembarkation was a breeze, just walked of the ship with our luggage. Conclusion: I would highly recommend Costa to anyone, great food, service and interesting ports of call. Read Less
Sail Date September 2008
The embarkation in Venice was well organized. The Taxi took us to our Cruise from our Hotel in Venice. Lucky we had a Canal in front of our Hotel Palazzo Odoni it cost 60 euros and worth every penny. From there, you will arrive right where ... Read More
The embarkation in Venice was well organized. The Taxi took us to our Cruise from our Hotel in Venice. Lucky we had a Canal in front of our Hotel Palazzo Odoni it cost 60 euros and worth every penny. From there, you will arrive right where the Costa people will take in charge your suitcase. After you are free to get in line with the other passengers. Quite fast really for getting in and one thing that nobody mentioned is that when you get inside the Boat you could get to your Cabin because the key is on the door. We got in and looked around and a beautiful basket of fruits was on the table for us. We had already ordered on the Internet this basket of fruits and also reserved the excursions before leaving 15 days before our departure. I strongly recommend to do this (no waiting line) and the tickets of your excursions will be delivered at your cabin the night of your arrival. The first IMPRESSION and this lasted till the end of the Cruise is that the Decor is like a Las Vegas Casino style and not Venetian Palace style. I know that we should understand the meaning of this decor but still I would prefer something more subtile. For example Palace Odoni (Hotel in Venice) which we stayed was a Venetian Palace of the 15th Century and the decor was much better then the Costa Mediterranea. The Cabin with a Balcony is worth it. Having breakfast on the balcony the first 3 days and seeing those beautiful and picturesque scenery is just breath taking. Our cabin stewart Arnulfo was of no utility, forgetting important things to leave in our cabin. When we saw him in the corridor we would ask him but he told us to call Room Service? Most European Tourist consisted of the people in this Cruise and not very smiling folks at all. The food well they will get an average score. We always travel in 5* resort Hotel and this Cruise would not even get close for food. The main Dining is quite a fast service and they make you feel like the faster you will leave the better it will be for them. I know they work very hard to serve all these people. The menu is long and with six choices to be made in 10 minutes (max) well this is call rushing people. After a few days we notice that the Pasta was served with the same tomato sauce each night but had a different name (people aren't crazy) they will notice this fact. The desert consist of a lot of fresh fruits hardly any pastries. We took a Tiramisu one night and it was a Chocolate Moka Cake??? not a Tiramisu. The excursions are well organized, but Barie is not worth visiting at all stay in the Boat. Santorini we took a Tour (Shades of white and blue) this brings you to the Top of Santorini and the City of Fiera is just so crowded.They have small streets to buy gifts and souvenirs. Then at night in Mykonos we went for super at the restaurant 'SCARPA' near the port in Little Venice with our dining group (watch for the prices). It would have been a beautiful sunset, but the Costa was right in front of the Sun :((( Rhodes and Dubrovnik you could walk in the City without an excursion plan and this will save you money. The boat will leave you from a walking distance to the City. Altogether I would not go back and try another Costa Cruise trip. We took this boat because of the Greek Islands destination they had. But I would recommend to write off Bari from their LIST for sure. Read Less
Sail Date September 2007
Costa Mediterranea Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabin 4.0 N/A
Dining 4.0 3.2
Entertainment 3.0 3.2
Public Rooms 4.0 4.1
Fitness & Recreation 4.0 N/A
Family 4.0 3.7
Shore Excursions 5.0 N/A
Enrichment Activities 1.0 N/A
Service 4.0 3.7
Value for Money 4.0 N/A

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