8 Hong Kong to Asia Oceania Nautica Cruise Reviews

Traveling with our dear friends, one of whom is a Veteran that served in Vietnam 50 years ago and wanted to finally go back to see it again, we originally selected this cruise because the itinerary matched with what we were interested in ... Read More
Traveling with our dear friends, one of whom is a Veteran that served in Vietnam 50 years ago and wanted to finally go back to see it again, we originally selected this cruise because the itinerary matched with what we were interested in seeing. Now, having completed the journey and enjoying every minute of it, I'm compelled to let others know how pleased we were for choosing Oceania's Nautica as our home for 15 days. Not only was the ship clean and beautiful, the Crew and Staff were so warm and welcoming every single day. The food was excellent, the entertainment top notch, the almost-daily disembarkation and embarkation process for excursions went smoothly and quickly, and all arrangements made on our behalf were very nicely taken care of. Another word about the entertainment....the 6 performers (singers and dancers) were so polished and so talented....and friendly!! We'd see them all over the ship at different times of day, and they felt like friends!! The Cruise Director too...he made every day so enjoyable!! We are looking forward to booking another cruise in the near future with Oceania. Our experience was so positive and memorable....Loved it!!! Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
The ship is lovely, all paneled walls and elegant furnishings. People have referred to it as old world. I also like very much that it is smaller than the ones we have been on in the past. It is not so exhausting to go from one end to ... Read More
The ship is lovely, all paneled walls and elegant furnishings. People have referred to it as old world. I also like very much that it is smaller than the ones we have been on in the past. It is not so exhausting to go from one end to the other all day. I also feel that it is easier to meet people when there are fewer of them. You are more likely to see people you have seen before. The theater is less massive. There are fewer nighttime activities, which is fine, and only 2 stores, which is great. It feels much less commercial than the big ships. Everything feels more low key. The entertainers were very good, except for the comedian. The food was very good, though not as exceptional as the advertising would lead you to believe. I would skip the ship's excursions and book your own separately. You will get smaller groups at less cost with more customization possible. I was annoyed that all the tours included shopping stops. Though I understand that people want souvenirs, I felt this took p too much of the excursion time. Be aware that if you did not prepay the tips they will be charged against the $800 shipboard credit that people commonly opt for. I didn't realize this and used my credit up on other things that I could have skipped. Bottom line. Great itineray. Lovely ship and service. Feel confident to book this cruise. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
Oceania is our favourite cruise line, having completed 11 cruises. We have sailed on all their ships except the newest Sarina. Compared to some other cruise lines we have sailed with, Oceania is absolutely the best, and the crew on all ... Read More
Oceania is our favourite cruise line, having completed 11 cruises. We have sailed on all their ships except the newest Sarina. Compared to some other cruise lines we have sailed with, Oceania is absolutely the best, and the crew on all ships are the friendliest. This cruise was a highlight of South East Asia countries, ending in Athens Greece. We listen to some people complain about price, however we have compared prices to some other companies and they all are about equal when free air and some other perks are compared. Most however do not compare to the food onboard Oceania ship's. We used most of the ship excursions on this cruise, because of the area we were visiting. They were of a very high quality, with excellent guides and clean transportation. We have found the cabin cleaning staff excellent. The cabins are cleaned twice daily, and towels changed. The entertainment is very minimal, however a 45 minute show each evening is sufficient for us, especially after a busy day ashore on excursions. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
M y wife and I have been cruising for twenty five years so I guess that qualifies us as experienced. We arranged with Oceania for a pre cruise stay in Hong Kong and a post cruise stay in Bangkok. We were cruising on the Nautica one of ... Read More
M y wife and I have been cruising for twenty five years so I guess that qualifies us as experienced. We arranged with Oceania for a pre cruise stay in Hong Kong and a post cruise stay in Bangkok. We were cruising on the Nautica one of Oceania's older (but restored) ships. I could write pages of information about this cruise but I am not really inclined to do that. In total, the ship was fantastic. The cabin was spacious, the service great and the crew exceptional. The perfection of the crew was only surpassed by the quality and selection of the food. It ranged from good to fabulous. Port excursions were variable depending where you were . They were quite expensive and not all that great for the money however, the choices were varied in each port and the selections good. The ship maintened a friendly and extremely welcoming atmosphere. Oceania took care of you from the moment you showed until the last second of disembarkation They left no stone unturned to try to insure your comfort, safety and good time. Have already booked a future cruise with Oceania and that says it all. Read Less
Sail Date March 2015
We just completed our second cruise with Oceania, having previously sailed on Riviera in the Meditteranean. This time, we chose Asia. We had done some of China before, but wanted to see how it was changed. We also had not been to Japan, ... Read More
We just completed our second cruise with Oceania, having previously sailed on Riviera in the Meditteranean. This time, we chose Asia. We had done some of China before, but wanted to see how it was changed. We also had not been to Japan, and the Pearls of the Orient itinerary aboard Nautica offered a couple destinations that were of interest, but which we thought might be too out of the way to get to otherwise. Embarkation: This was fairly smooth. Our family arrived on 2 different flights. One group of us arrived on a flight that arrived in the morning. As a bonus, since the cabins were not ready yet, a bonus tour of Hong Kong was provided, which was most welcome with almost everyone. Better to see some of the city than to sit around waiting for the stateroom to be ready. This was included in the airport transfer fee. A few guests had a similar tour of the city booked for the next day, and had to get that canceled, but this was definitely a bonus. Once on board the ship, things went very smoothly. Service: To me, this is Oceania's greatest strength. Everyone aims to please, is tremendously polite, seemingly happy, and hard working. There is seemingly nothing you ask for that cannot be arranged. This extends from stateroom stewards, dining staff, sommeliers, concierge, destination services, to maintenance folks and the officers on board. The staff is phenomenal, friendly, and really makes cruising with Oceania a great experience. Dining: The food on board is fantastic. On board is the Grand Dining room, which offers open seating, meaning you can go when you like. The menu varies daily, and on a 16 day cruise, only a couple, very popular menu items repeated. The food is fantastic and consistent. There are two specialty restaurants on board, Toscana and Polo Grill. Reservations are necessary, but we got 2 meals at each. I honestly prefer the Grand Dining Room to the specialty restaurants as there is more variety, but they are fun for just mixing things up a bit. There is also a buffet restaurant, which we used only for breakfast on days that began early. There was a bit more self-service than we had experienced on Riviera, and we were not big fans of that for sanitation reasons. It also tended to be crowded at breakfast time, and tables were hard to get. There is a burger place by the pool, which was great for days we got back to the ship a bit late. Generally speaking, the food service is, after the service, a major selling point for choosing Oceania. Beverages: Beverage service is a la carte. There are a couple options for per diem all you can drink packages if you are into that sort of thing. The wine list at the restaurants is solid, if not a bit overpriced. There is a team of friendly sommeliers that know the list well. You can bring wine and other beverages on board, provided you consume them in your stateroom, which we took full advantage of in some of the ports of call where the weather was nice and we could enjoy a glass of wine on the balcony looking out over Shanghai or Hong Kong. If you choose to bring a bottle to a restaurant or lounge, the corkage fee is $25. We are mostly wine drinkers, so I am not sure about the pricing of cocktails and other beverages. Stateroom: We had a standard veranda room. It was a big smaller than on Riviera, but cozy. The bathroom is shower only, and small, but you're on a ship. Furnishings were great, and towels, soft drinks, and water were replenished constantly. During warmer weather, we made good use of the veranda. The room serviced twice daily, in the morning and at turndown. A couple times we got back during servicing, and found our stewardess, fluffing curtains, sanitizing all surfaces. Just phenomenal service. Public Areas: We spent a lot of time in Horizon's Lounge, which offers a great panoramic view in front of the ship. Tea is served there, and is a lot of fun if you can handle more food. Later in the evening, it becomes more of a lounge atmosphere. The only downside is that it is the only place smoking is allowed indoors on the ship (albeit in one corner). They have a ventilation system that helps keep the smell out, but it's not always effective, and sometimes the smell permeated throughout Horizons and into the stairwells. I'd prefer they keep smoking to outdoors only. The Nautica Lounge is used for lectures, shows, and receptions. There is a casino on board as well as a couple bar areas, which we did not utilize. There are two shops as well offering luxury items, which we also did not use. Entertainment: The string quartet and the band on board were quite good. We did not get to any of the shows. They had a couple cooking demonstrations with the head chef which were fun, and wine tastings which were expensive but fun on days at sea. Also they had lectures on board which were fantastic about history and issues relating to upcoming ports of call. Fellow Cruisers: This is an older crowd. I would not recommend taking kids on an Oceania cruise, as entertainment options are limited. The people who travel on Oceania are mostly experienced and well traveled people. I am in my 30s, and enjoyed it just fine. There were a few of people who were quite elderly and debilitated, which is of no concern except that it can slow you down on excursions. Destinations: Oceania bills itself as creating destination-oriented cruises. While they offer plenty of Caribbean cruises, they also offer lots of cruises to off the beaten path destinations or destinations that one would not typically associate with cruising. Our cruise stopped at Hong Kong, Keelung Taiwan (30 minutes from Taipei), Naha in Okinawa, Kobe (an hour from Osaka and Kyoto), Hiroshima, Shanghai, Incheon (45 minutes from Seoul), Dalian, China, and Tianjin (2 hours from Beijing which is inland). There were overnight stays in Hong Kong, Kobe, Shanghai, and Tianjin. Dalian was not exactly a tourist destination, but it was fascinating to see a mushrooming Chinese city that is not tourist oriented. All other destinations offered plenty of things to do. Excursions: My main criticism of this cruise was that the excursions were mediocre. Often, groups on excursions were quite large (30+). My family is relatively young and energetic, and sometimes it felt like significant time was wasted in shuffling the large group around. I wish more options were available for more fit people. Most of the excursions lay out what degree of stairs and walking will have to be navigated. I would love it if each destination offered an excursion or two which are sort of "If you have to ask how many stairs there are, choose something else". In other words, something a little more fast-paced and agile. Our excursion in Taipei was not the best. We went to the National Palace Museum, which houses some of the great treasures of ancient China. To say it is a crowded place is an understatement, but with a group of 30+ people, significant time was wasted just herding the group around. We did Shanghai on our own, which was quite doable. We were able to do much more than one would have been able to do with any of the excursions Oceania offered. Additionally, in Kobe, we booked an independent tour of Kyoto, which saw more of the city using public transportation than the excursions did, and avoiding long bus rides and the herding issue. To top it off, this was a far cheaper option. The only issue with independent arrangements is that you may not get priority in going through immigration procedures and disembarkment at various ports, and if you get delayed for any reason, the ship may not wait for you. Nevertheless, in the future, we will lean towards independent arrangements. Pricing: I believe the cruise itself was priced fairly, and may even be a bit of a bargain. It's not a Carnival sort of pricing, as you get a heck of a lot more service, but for the length of the trip, I thought it was priced well (booked with 2 for 1 and airfare included). Internet costs are simply outrageous, and from those who used it, I was told it was slow. The spa and gym services were also priced stiffly. Excursions are quite pricey as well, and in my opinion, overpriced. At the end of the trip, you'll get a bill for a service charge, but I actually appreciate this, as you don't have to spend a bunch of time deciding how much to tip. In short, the cruise is fairly priced, but they hit you hard for anything extra you do, which is often more than you are getting. I suppose this is the business model of the cruise industry. Flight Arrangements: I added this category here because this is a common criticism I heard from fellow cruisers. My flight arrangements were quite reasonable, but for some, the air itineraries were quite absurd. Some fellow family members from Chicago were sent to LA (2 days before the first day of the cruise, which is admittedly a bit complicated in light of the long flights and time zone issues) despite there being a couple of daily direct flights available to Hong Kong from Chicago. Several cruisers I spoke with take a credit and make their own flight arrangements independently to avoid situations like these. Were I to have had a similar itinerary to the rest of my family, I would have been in trouble and either had to cancel or have a big mess in arranging extra vacation time at work. Summary: There are a few hassles, but overall, this was a second fantastic experience. I thoroughly enjoyed this cruise, and have learned a bit in terms of how to optimize the experience further for the next one. From Oceania, you will get reasonably priced luxury, excellent food, and intriguing destinations that offer you an opportunity to "travel" and not just cruise. Even days at sea were highly enjoyable. The staff makes this work more than anything else. I would highly recommend Oceania. Read Less
Sail Date February 2014
We travelled from Vancouver with Cathi & Bruce who also rated this cruise and certainly agree with most of their observations. Here are a few additional points: Val and I are close to 70 years of age and probably more sedate than Cathi ... Read More
We travelled from Vancouver with Cathi & Bruce who also rated this cruise and certainly agree with most of their observations. Here are a few additional points: Val and I are close to 70 years of age and probably more sedate than Cathi and partner; our chief interest is in the actual cruising experience rather than shore excursions or specific destinations although this itinerary took us to places we have never visited before and maybe won't see again. We are often quite happy sitting on an outside deck with a good book watching the sea go by. Flight from Vancouver to Hong Kong: uneven service on Cathay Pacific; the unscheduled diversion to Taipei made the long tiring flight even longer. Pre-Hotel: Also stayed at the Marco Polo Hong Kong for two nights, club floor room overlooking the cruise ship pier. Excellent service and fine room. Would heartily recommend. Hotel porter carried our luggage to the ship's check-in desk. Check-in process painless and quite speedy. Able to access our room with little delay and luggage delivered promptly. Cabin: adequate, picture window, beds very comfortable. Not a great deal of storage but sufficient even for a 35-day cruise (country club casual dress code helped), plenty of hangers, small bathroom with good shelving and cabinet space, very small shower stall - turn round and you open the shower curtain! Excellent cabin stewardess from Bulgaria. Our few 'standing orders' attended to promptly each day. Public Rooms: Very attractive ship with nice decor. Easy to find one's way around. Good library with two laptops; excellent service in computer lab; pleasant white glove afternoon tea service daily in Horizons with string quartet accompaniment; congenial Martinis Bar with outstanding pianist; Art Director actually added to, rather than detracted from, this cruise. Pool areas well maintained despite the usual 'reserving' of non-reservable seats. Dining rooms and Terrace cafe attractively decorated. Food: Outstanding, particularly in the Grand Dining Room and Tapas on the Terrace. No problem accessing the (free) specialty restaurants but food didn't surpass the regular food services. Excellent menus, generous portions, mostly cooked to order and attractively presented; reasonably priced and quite extensive wine list. Buffet breakfast and lunch service in the Terrace Cafe well above average. Service: Possibly this ship's greatest feature; a multinational group of staff who always had a smile and welcome (usually by name), irrespective of where one happened to be; impeccable service in all dining areas despite the open seating policy and randomness of table assignment; helpful in every way; nothing was too much trouble. Why dine ashore with food and service like this? The red carpet 'Welcome Home' from long shore excursions was a nice touch. Leslie Jon an outstanding Cruise Director with best Team Trivia afloat. A few minor complaints: Insufficient lounge chairs on deck 5 and same in poor state of repair. Reservation of deck chairs on this deck and in pool area could have been discouraged more forcefully. A DVD/CD player in the cabin would have been appreciated. Bar drinks/service charge rather exorbitant. Room service charge for bottles of liquor outrageous - fortunately, Oceania still allow a reasonable quantity of liquor to be brought on board. Summary: We are small ship enthusiasts and Oceania has certainly captured our attention - so much so we are already booked for 42 days on Regatta next year! Read Less
Sail Date April 2008
We have just returned from the 2008 Nautica voyage from Hong Kong to Athens. A little background, we are a semi-retired couple in our late 50's. We've done quite a bit of cruising with several different lines but this was our ... Read More
We have just returned from the 2008 Nautica voyage from Hong Kong to Athens. A little background, we are a semi-retired couple in our late 50's. We've done quite a bit of cruising with several different lines but this was our first Oceania cruise. We used the Oceania "free" air program with a deviation so we could spend a couple of days in Hong Kong. We booked our own hotel in Hong Kong and it was a winner. Pre-Hotel - we stayed at the Marco Polo Hong Kong and chose the continental club floor. The hotel is attached to the Harbour/Ocean centre which is where the Nautica docks in Hong Kong. Our room was very nice and the amenities offered on the club floor level are extensive. They include an American buffet breakfast, afternoon tea, and evening cocktail hour (which besides all you can drink includes tasty tidbits that could make a meal!). The Ship - What can I say that hasn't been already said. The Nautica is a very well maintained ship. Our stateroom was a balcony at the rear of the ship. It was a little smaller than I expected but had adequate storage for all the things we took and what we acquired over 35 days. On a couple of occasions we did experience some vibrations from the propellers but it was not annoying. Before we went I was not a fan of the anytime dining concept but we were totally won over by the ease of this system. We utilized all four of the dinner restaurants - Grand, Polo, Toscana, and Tapas on the Terrace- and each has something to offer. We never had any trouble making reservations at Polo or Toscana and we never had to wait for a table in the Grand dining room. The food was, in my opinion, too fancy but we are not gourmet foodies. We were impressed by the variety and the presentation of the food. All of the wait staff were very friendly and we were sad to leave them in Athens. Entertainment - We knew before we left (thanks to Cruise Critic) that the entertainment on this smaller ship was not of the caliber of the larger ships so we were not expecting much. We did have Jack for the first part of our cruise and he was great!! His talks are much like he writes on the boards and, even my husband who never looks at CC, really enjoyed them. There were a couple of entertainers early on in the voyage that we found quite entertaining and hope they will be on other voyages. They were Geraldine Doyle and Rory & his wonder dog. I wish they had spread these two out as they were both in the first 2 weeks and then it was very "highbrow" entertainers in the last 3 weeks. Never went to see them so can't comment. We did enjoy the lectures done by Ronnie Sampson. He seems to be quite a character and his lectures showed it. Shore Excursions - We did some on our own and we did some with Oceania. We did do the Taj Mahal 3day/2night and the overnight in Luxor with Oceania. Both are pricey but they deliver value. The Taj Mahal trip was a WOW! One passenger I talked later said that a fellow passenger had talked him out of going because there wasn't anything to see besides the Taj. Oh how wrong can one be!! Yes, the Taj is the focal point of this trip but, IMHO, there is so much more. There is way more to the Taj Mahal than you see in the pictures, which surprised most of us, and the other tours to see the "Deserted City", the Agra Fort, and the mini-Taj were from out of left field!! The "private" plane and the "deluxe" meals are not quite up to par. It's not very private when there are 120 of you on the plane and like most low cost carriers there's not a lot of leg room. The meals were very ordinary airplane food and there was no choice. They would have been better sending box lunches from the ship. The hotel in Agra - the Taj View- was first class. We had a lovely room that faced the Taj Mahal. Too bad we didn't have any time to enjoy it. The meals provided at the hotel were disappointing but by this time we had gotten used to the superb meals served on the ship so maybe it's not a fair comparison. From the comment of other who went on this trip, I would like to make a suggestion. Cut the tour to 2 days/1 night and fly back to Mumbai with an early evening flight. This would allow people to have a day in Mumbai. As it was we got back to the ship just in time for it to sail. The other major excursion was to Luxor. This is a long trip (3 hours on the bus from port to Luxor) but was also well worth it! We toured both Karnak and Luxor Temples and went to see the sound & light show at Karnak on the first day. The hotel (we stayed at the Steinbrugger) was very nice. The meals provided here were slightly better than those in Agra but it's hard to compare them to the ship. On the second day, we went to the Valley of the Kings, Queen Hatsheput temple, and Colullus of Memmon (spelling doesn't count!. Again we only got back to the ship just before it sailed but it was nice to have the band playing and senior staff to greet us as we came back on board. If you plan on doing this itinerary in the future, I would recommend looking into the Oceania private vans. For 6 or 8 people this is often a cost effective alternative to the mass market tours and you get to decide what you want to see. We, also, had managed to get a group together on our roll call and, one of our group, had arranged private tours in 3 ports. For the third biggie of this itin - Petra- we had a private tour for 12 of us that took us to Wadi Rum and Petra that ended up being 12 hours instead of the 15 hours of the ship's tour and was about 1/3 of the cost. Disembarkation - Surprisingly, this was quick and painless. We appreciated the ease with which Oceania accomplished this difficult ending. After 35 days we had made so many friends and it was not easy to leave this beautiful ship. We have done many cruises but never over 14 days before this one. Before we left we thought we would be more than ready to come home BUT not the case! We loved the Nautica. We saw more wonders of world in one cruise than I ever thought you could. If you only ever do one major cruise do this one!!! The itinerary is hard to match, the ship is wonderful, and, should you be as lucky as us, the people you meet will be friends for life! Read Less
Sail Date April 2008
I remember sailing into the Red Sea through gently undulating waters, the Arabian Sea stretched behind us like a sheet of hammered silver, the setting sun radiating its beams of light through the fluffy clouds. We were enjoying our ... Read More
I remember sailing into the Red Sea through gently undulating waters, the Arabian Sea stretched behind us like a sheet of hammered silver, the setting sun radiating its beams of light through the fluffy clouds. We were enjoying our delicious dinner on the outdoor terrace of Tapas, the ship's Spanish-inspired casual dining restaurant, as we watched the dappled surface of the water reflect the sun's rays that changed from golden to orange to crimson. This was a lovely sight that was repeated many times during our time aboard the Nautica. During our five weeks of cruising, we were blessed by unusually placid waters, the barely noticeable swaying of the ship reminding us that we are at sea during the day and gently rocking us to sleep at night. The days were generally sunny and hot, but the humidity moderate, more temperate than can usually be expected in this part of the world. We marveled at the sights we have seen in Hong Kong, Viet Nam, Thailand, Singapore, India, Oman, Jordan, Egypt, and sailing through the Suez Canal. The shore excursions, though a bit pricey, were uniformly excellent. The ship, our "home-away-from-home", was comfortable and beautiful. It has modern amenities in the setting of an 18th century English manor house. This is one of three identical ships operated by Oceania. They are small by today's ship standards, carrying just 680 passengers, and that makes them more intimate and easy to settle into. This was our fourth time on these ships, and they are, by far, our favorites. The entertainment was very good, with singers, magicians, comedy acts, classical pianists, a string quartet, an eight-piece orchestra, lecturers, and various talents from the ship's company adding to the variety. The four restaurants are each beautiful with a wide variety of carefully prepared and beautifully presented food. Often it is a challenge to decide what to select, but the wait staff is always ready to provide assistance. Each restaurant has its own personality and charm; Tapas is the casual dining venue and is also the buffet for breakfast and lunch, Polo is the clubby steakhouse, Toscana is a Tuscan-inspired restaurant, and the beautiful Grand Dining Room serves a wide variety of continental cuisine under a painted domed ceiling. There is an open-seating policy which results in joining different companions for dinner; this leads to interesting discussions about travel experiences and many new friends are made. Of course, many tables for two are also available and we also enjoy that from time to time. Our cabin was cozy and comfortable, with a large verandah that overlooks the stern of the ship. We often sit on our chaise lounges and read during our days at sea, and watch the retreating shoreline as we depart from ports. It was also interesting to look for fish frolicking in our wake, to view passing ships, and to observe the islands we sometimes pass. We have had the same cabin, or the identical one next door, on all four of our voyages on Oceania, so we immediately feel at home. The best part of the cruise experience is contributed by the crew. From the staff in the dining rooms, to the cabin stewards, to the entertainers, the staff is outstanding. They are friendly and helpful, quick with a greeting and a smile, and are a delight to get to know. Over sixty countries are represented, some from places we visited, and we regularly gain more insight into the daily lives of people from the staff than we do from tour guides. We have shared in their excitement as they are able to see their families, and sometimes bring them aboard ship, when we visit their countries. We have gotten to know many of them quite well and will be sad to say goodbye to them, our new friends. Hopefully our paths will cross again. It is remarkable to be able to experience the amazing variety of geography, cultures, and people that God has blessed us to live with on this small, blue planet. We pray that this will give us a broader perspective as He puts new opportunities in our path. But it was good to get home and have a pizza! Read Less
Sail Date March 2006
Nautica Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 3.9
Dining 5.0 4.3
Entertainment 3.0 3.3
Public Rooms 5.0 4.4
Fitness Recreation 5.0 3.8
Family 2.0 3.8
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.0
Enrichment 5.0 3.5
Service 4.0 4.5
Value For Money 5.0 3.5
Rates 5.0 3.9

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