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13 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2017
Having sailed with Fred Olsen 5 times previously, we had high expectations of this longed for trip to Italy. However, it was the first time we had sailed on the Boudicca. The first thing that was a shock was the embarkation from Falmouth, ... Read More
Having sailed with Fred Olsen 5 times previously, we had high expectations of this longed for trip to Italy. However, it was the first time we had sailed on the Boudicca. The first thing that was a shock was the embarkation from Falmouth, which was the first time this port has been used. I can only describe it as like going through a cattle market. It was a large storage facility on the dock, with no-where near enough seating for everyone. It was cold, draughty, with no facilities available. The check in process seemed chaotic, the security was a joke, since the customs check did not bother with many of the passengers bags. We were just waved through. Once on board, we were disappointed with the ship, again, it did not seem to have enough space and seemed crowded. We were disappointed with our cabin, which seemed dark and dingy. The boat was very noisy and vibrated the whole time, making sleeping difficult. We could not fault the wonderful staff, or the entertainment, which was spot on, but we did think the food wasn't as good as on their larger boats. We booked the trip specifically to visit Rome and Pompeii. The trip to Rome would have been good, but for the fact that we were visiting the Vatican City, and had to stand in a 2 hour queue before even getting inside. We didn't bother in the end and just did our own thing. The trip to Pompeii was advertised as a 5 hour trip, but we actually got less than 2 hours in Pompeii. The trip to Palmero, Sicily, was awful. Was a horrible place. The whole experience this time around has put us off booking with Fred Olsen again. If we did, we would be sure to book the larger boats. Would never sail on the Boudicca again. It was also beset with illness among the passengers and some crew. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2016
We booked this cruise as we wanted to sail round the UK from Falmouth, our local port in South West England. The port was easy to find, and we booked valet parking with CPS, which went smoothly: our cases were taken straight to the ship ... Read More
We booked this cruise as we wanted to sail round the UK from Falmouth, our local port in South West England. The port was easy to find, and we booked valet parking with CPS, which went smoothly: our cases were taken straight to the ship by the porters. We then entered a makeshift Embarkation tent where we registered and received our cabin cards. There was plenty of seating, and refreshments were available. The tent was rather draughty, but we only had to wait about 30 minutes before we were allowed on the ship. This is the second time we have sailed on the Boudicca. We like the relatively small size of the ship, and the food and service is excellent. The clientele is largely British and over 60, but there also were a smattering of American and German passengers, and under 60s on board. Entertainment was OK. The Show Company were professional, and we also enjoyed the Rosario Trio, who played in the Secret Garden Lounge. There were Wildlife lectures given by Sandie Sowler, Port talks by Judith Cranswick, and Whisky talks. There was also a Classical Duo: unfortunately the violinist did not play very well, so we only attended the first of their concerts! Bridge was also available. The Captain Sten Ronny Jensen ("Hello, it's me again") gave a briefing every day at noon, and also emphasised the need for strict hygiene measures, hand washing and use of antibacterial dispensers. Most of the passengers adhered to this, and there were no cases of Norovirus reported, as far as I know. The Ports of Call were Liverpool, Kirkwall, Invergordon, Scrabster, Tobermory and Belfast. All were worth visiting, and Falmouth itself is an interesting town, and worth a pre or post cruise stay if you have the time. There are boat trips available to Trelissick, St Mawes and Truro, and if you have a car there are gardens to visit, plus St Ives, Eden Project etc. Read Less
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