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8 Night Caribbean Cruise from Barbados

8 Night Caribbean Cruise from Barbados

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Sea Cloud (Photo: Sea Cloud Cruises)
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Itinerary


Sea Cloud

Cruise Critic Editor Rating:
5.0
6 reviews
Why Choose Sea Cloud?

World's most luxurious tall ship

World's most luxurious tall ship

Built in 1931 for heiress Marjorie Merriweather Post

Built in 1931 for heiress Marjorie Merriweather Post

Interiors restored to their original splendor

Interiors restored to their original splendor


Cruise Reviews

8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2016
I love sailing and wanted to visit Hermitage and experience educational lecturers on board Food was good on 2-3 occasions better food on Oceania line although not a sailing ship Cabin was cozy but it greeted me with a dead flower-not ... Read More
I love sailing and wanted to visit Hermitage and experience educational lecturers on board Food was good on 2-3 occasions better food on Oceania line although not a sailing ship Cabin was cozy but it greeted me with a dead flower-not a good first impression and tissue on head floor-not good impression either Service aboard was good but not up to 5 stars Sails were up only 2 and half days-disappointing for those of us who were there to enjoy sailing square rigger Good rating overall but at 5 star prices, I expected 5 stars! Enjoyed speaking with ship doctor as I am also a physician. Oceania line does not allow passengers to touch utensils which is excellent infection control in a number of buffet settings. Although no diarrhea -many passengers came down with colds-yes respiratory but can be passed from nose to hands to silverware and onto next passanger Read Less
22 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2016
A first rate experience all around on Sea Cloud II. Everything ran so smoothly. Super comfortable cabins and amenities. Gracious and skilled crew. There is nothing as exhilarating as seeing the crew set the sails! Friendly, ... Read More
A first rate experience all around on Sea Cloud II. Everything ran so smoothly. Super comfortable cabins and amenities. Gracious and skilled crew. There is nothing as exhilarating as seeing the crew set the sails! Friendly, bi-lingual staff members who cater to your every comfort. Tom Hook, the cruise director, is such a professional. Always efficient without seeming to break into a sweat, always gracious. Talented musician who got the passengers involved in sing alongs. WONDERFUL food - what a creative chef. Always obtained fresh vegetables, fruits and fabulous fish from whatever ports we stopped at. The portions were perfect - never a huge sickening plate of food. Thoughtfully planned excursions ashore and every thing went perfectly when we arrived in a port. We look forward to returning for another Sea Cloud experience. No wonder that there were several guests who had cruised on Sea Cloud before. I highly recommend without reservation! Read Less
12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2014

An elegant grandmother, Sea Cloud is a four masted beauty from 1931. She has all the richness and character of a family possession designed by Marjorie Merriweather Post, and to this day it feels like her family ship and as a guest on ... Read More

An elegant grandmother, Sea Cloud is a four masted beauty from 1931. She has all the richness and character of a family possession designed by Marjorie Merriweather Post, and to this day it feels like her family ship and as a guest on board like you are a guest of the family. The service is warm and personable to a degree unmatched by any of the larger ships I have ever been on.

The Sea Cloud II is the delightful granddaughter of the Sea Cloud. Built in 2001 she has three masts instead of 4 and all the modern conveniences while still preserving the traditional sailing rigging. Like the Sea Cloud, she has real sails that are raised and lowered by hand and a five star service that is polished yet familial.

So how do I compare the two ships? Both are extraordinary in terms of size, service, food, wine, etc....However, Sea Cloud has 10 beautiful original cabins all finished with original antiques and all a nice size. The other cabins are nice but not special as the original ones. If you have the money, splurge. On Sea Cloud II all of the cabins are really beautiful, from the very smallest with bunk beds to the owner's cabin, they are all tasteful with light and cheery colors, beautiful marble bathrooms, and excellent craftsmanship in all the little details. Sea Cloud II hold a few more people than Sea Cloud but the key is to know who is on the ship that week.

I have spoken (though not personally experienced) Americans that have been on board when the ship was operated by Sea Cloud Cruises and the other passengers were almost entirely German. The people I spoke with were not thrilled with the experience. There are however other choices:

I traveled on a golf trip with Kalos Golf (who only uses the Sea Cloud II) and it was excellent. The itinerary was well designed and everything was included. They even had golf carts trucked around to meet us as the local courses did not have them. On days when I did not want to play golf there were other options, though they were not great. If you like to play golf and want to travel with Americans this is 100% the way to go.

Lindblad charters the original Sea Cloud (and not the Sea Cloud II) and again there are mostly Americans on board. Their trips have a natural history focus and they (as well as Kalos) like to fill every bed on the ship. Again there trips are high cost but high quality. I ever mind paying a premium price for high quality. The oceanographer on our cruise very knowledgeable even about things like deep sea plankton!

The third option is Academic Arrangements Abroad which charters both ships and does different itineraries all over that have a cultural focus. The advantage is that they work with the country's top non-profits so you get lecturers from the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Harvard, Yale, and various garden clubs and other private clubs, among others. The best thing about their cruises is that they are open to the public but never advertised and they limit the number of passengers so the service levels are even higher and all the touring is free and excellent.

So to answer my original question which of the two ships is better? You would have to say that they are both incredibly beautiful ships with great service, why not try both? Depending on your language skills and you interests, you might be better off picking a specific charterer than going directly to the cruise line.

 

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