5 Liverpool to Norwegian Fjords Cruise & Maritime Voyages Magellan Cruise Reviews

We had a good overall experience on our “Grand Fjordland Splendour” cruise on the Magellan. Overall, we believe that the cruise provided good value for money. Nevertheless, some upsetting incidents arose that could have been avoided, ... Read More
We had a good overall experience on our “Grand Fjordland Splendour” cruise on the Magellan. Overall, we believe that the cruise provided good value for money. Nevertheless, some upsetting incidents arose that could have been avoided, or much better handled, if managers had taken more care of their customers. The ports of call were good, and the excursions, though expensive, were worthwhile. We found the food and cabins perfectly adequate. The gym is good, but the library and the areas for quiet discussion and games are small. Much of the inside space is taken up by the casino, beauty salon, photograph shop and gift shop, which seem designed to make profit for the company, rather than to add much to customers’ pleasure. The singing and dancing shows in the theatre are spirited and appealing, but some singers in the bar areas are over-amplified. Cabin, restaurant and bar staff were unfailingly helpful and pleasant. By contrast, the staff on Reception can be off hand. One we encountered was actively rude. These staff need to be better managed. We had a few occasions in which we needed to speak to the Reception staff. Once we asked for a town map for a port we intended to explore on our own. There were two ladies at the desk. The unhelpful lady did not bother to look, and said that they didn’t have any. The helpful lady said, ‘I think we might have some.’ She got up, looked in a cupboard, and found a pile of town maps. Another unhelpful lady brushed aside a query about changing our dinner sitting. We asked to speak to the restaurant manger. The reception lady replied in an uninterested voice that we had to sort this out ourselves. One night the toilet flush didn’t work. Someone had pushed something down the pan and blocked the loo for several cabins. I called Reception. The lady was uninterested and said that it would be fixed in the morning. In the morning, it hadn’t been fixed. When we went to Reception to find out what had happened, one member of staff was particularly unpleasant. For example, when I asked why we hadn’t been moved to a different cabine as soon as I reported the problem, he said, ‘We have emergency cabins, but you didn’t ask for one.’ There’s a reason for that. I didn’t know they existed, and Reception didn’t tell me. After much persistence, we were allowed to speak to the customer services manager. He recognised that our enjoyment of our holiday had been reduced, and that we deserved compensation that he could not authorise himself. He undertook to write to CMV company management to set out our case, and assured us that CMV would wrtie to us after our return home. We have had no communication from CMV. Management can be slow to respond to situations that arise. Once, we returned from an excursion to find that the tide was low, and that the gangway resembled a limbo dancing pole. You couldn’t enter the ship, even by bending low. Passengers, many of whom had mobility difficulties, were having to sit on the gangway and slide down on their bottoms. Some complained that they had been injured by this. In my case, the only damage done was to my dignity. However, it was not pleasant to hear that a lady had been asked to leave her wheelchair to slide down the gangway. Only after angry passengers had voiced their complaints did management belatedly make tender boats available. This need should have been attemded to hours earlier. CMV needs to ensure that managers and staff responsibie for customer welfare treat passengers like valued guests, rather than like a bunch of nuisances. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
My husband and I chose this cruise not just for its itinerary and reasonable cost but for the convenience of the return trip from Liverpool; disembarkation went smoothly but we were surprised our hand luggage was not scanned or inspected ... Read More
My husband and I chose this cruise not just for its itinerary and reasonable cost but for the convenience of the return trip from Liverpool; disembarkation went smoothly but we were surprised our hand luggage was not scanned or inspected in any way, we could have been carrying anything - very disturbing given the times we live in. The Magellan is very dated, desperately in need of a refit. Public areas are drab and uninteresting but there are plenty of places to sit. We had an outside cabin which again was set in a time warp but it was quite spacious, ample storage and the bathroom quite roomy. There didn't have to be much of a swell for it to creak and groan which sometimes kept us awake. The walls seemed to be very thin as we often heard nextdoor's TV and the toilet flushing, also it got very hot and stuffy due to the air conditioning knob not being adjustable. Dining had its ups and downs - mostly downs. Raffles Bistro is the self service option which was a nightmare at breakfast, obviously not big enough with insufficient seating, most mornings we were forced to sit outside which was quite chilly and uncomfortable. We did try the other two restaurants for breakfast and lunch but the Bistro had more choice, better fare and we didn't have to put up with some of the ill disciplined waiting staff's shoddy service and lack of decorum. There was far too much fooling around, loud chatter, singing and banging of crockery. From behind the waiters' stations we heard one say to his colleague 'move your ass' when he came in with a tray of meals and on another occasion a waiter mimmicked a northern English accent. Our designated restaurant for the evening was the Waldorf, I might add that our two waiters were very pleasant and attentive, one of whom even gave us a napkin folding after our meal. But mostly we ate in the Bistro as there weren't many people - guaranteed table for two, it had a cloth on it and we had a view - happy days! In and around the bars a few of the barmen and male waiting staff had the same clowning around attitude but most were very professional and good at their job. We found all the female waiting staff extremely efficient, attentive and you certainly didn't have to wait long to be served. The entertainment was dire, especially the singing which was amateurish, out of tune and performed with fake American accents. Far better was heard from passengers on the karoke night, one girl sang 'Fields of Gold' - she was superb; knocked spots off the so called professionals. As for the comedian, well, he was an embarrassment and totally inappropriate, not only were his 'jokes' lame and inane but he sang some ditties ridiculing world leaders, one targeting Mugabe, the lyrics of Old MacDonald changed to that he no longer had a farm - this odious creep thought that it was funny that people had lost their way of life and their livestock in such horrible cruel acts of violence. I can't comment on the shore excursions as we made our own way around. Activities such as paper plane folding and creating flowers from crepe paper and plastic bottles didn't exactly appeal so just as well we took the £17 p/p p/d drinks package which was very good value and worth doing, so no complaints there. Overall, even though we had our gripes, we saw the places we set out to, seeing beautiful scenery. I know it's a cliche saying 'you get what you pay for' but this cruise surely endorsed that. 9 nights was enough. And no, I wouldn't go with CMV again. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
Chose the Cruise because I could board at Liverpool. I was very disappointed with the poor choice of food in Raffles buffet at breakfast and lunchtime. It was very difficult to find a seat to eat a meal since it is so small and this was a ... Read More
Chose the Cruise because I could board at Liverpool. I was very disappointed with the poor choice of food in Raffles buffet at breakfast and lunchtime. It was very difficult to find a seat to eat a meal since it is so small and this was a particular problem on sea days. Lots of staff on Reception but most appeared poorly trained and they constantly had to find more experienced staff to consult. Overall, there appeared to be a total lack of communication between staff in all departments. When problems arose, few of them were willing to help solve them. The problem always remained with the customer to sort out. II thought the theatre entertainment was good and Dana was a brilliant revelation. The remaining organised activities during the day were poor. Trying to find seats in the bars and lounges in the evening was difficult because there were too many passengers for the limited facilities of the ship. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
Our cruise was to the Norwegian Fjords on a 10 day cruise on the Magellan. Sailing from Liverpool, we were due to visit Eidfjord, Flam, Bergen, Kirkwall and Dublin. Boarding the vessel was straight forward and relatively quick. ... Read More
Our cruise was to the Norwegian Fjords on a 10 day cruise on the Magellan. Sailing from Liverpool, we were due to visit Eidfjord, Flam, Bergen, Kirkwall and Dublin. Boarding the vessel was straight forward and relatively quick. However, I was a little concerned that as we entered the ship, the crew member ushering us on board was standing in front of the automatic liquid hand cleanser dispenser and we weren’t told to clean our hands. During the voyage, I saw several examples of this lax attitude to hand cleaning by both passengers and members of the crew. For example, at the entrance to the self-service Bistro cafeteria there was a dispenser but no member of the crew telling people to use it. Consequently, I saw many passengers walk straight past the dispenser without cleansing. My wife also said that several women using the toilets before lunch did not bother to wash their hands and then walked straight into lunch. In Kirkwall, several of the crew got off and, and as we got back on to the ship, I observed at least four crew walking up the gangplank and straight into the ship without hand cleansing. To me, the attitude to cleanliness/hygiene was far too casual. The whole ship seemed to be in need of a ‘deep’ clean. The carpets were shabby and the ship was generally ‘run down’. Overcrowding was most apparent in the Bistro cafeteria (self-service) at lunch times. If you didn’t get there early, it was hard to get a seat. Consequently, we took lunch in the Kensington restaurant, as we did with our evening meal. The food was generally of a good standard and the evening table service was excellent. Magellan has also done away with the late night snacks (11.00pm) in the Bistro. Instead, food was supposed to be served in the lounges. So if you wanted a small cake/biscuit before bed with a cup of tea – tough! And if you wanted a cup of hot chocolate, you might as well have asked for a pot of gold! We had an inside cabin on deck 6. There was a reasonable amount of space but no chairs to sit on – so what, you may ask?! (See below). The walls seem to be thin and we could hear the people in the next cabin; especially the woman, who was particularly loud, mainly at midnight! The evening’s entertainment on the Magellan was disappointing. Dana was the singer – very good and Dave Hubbard, the comedian, was excellent (and ‘clean’). However, the show team and the singers were pretty poor. Liked the pianist and violinist duo –very good. The scenery in the fjords was spectacular and we were able to do our own thing in Eidfjord, Flam, Bergen and Kirkwall. We felt the organised visits were too expensive. We went on the train ride ourselves in Flam. Judging from the comments of the people, who went on the organised trip, it was better and cheaper for us! Our visit to the Highland Park whiskey distillery in Kirkwall was very interesting and only cost us a tenner each – with samples after the tour. On the evening of day 7 of a 10 day cruise (after Kirkwall), we went to the Kensington restaurant (6.15pm) as per usual. My wife chose the pasta dish. However, after a few mouthfuls, she complained that it did not taste nice and opted for the fish dish. By 9.00pm, my wife was complaining of stomach cramps, which got progressively worse. So much so, we called the medical centre. A male nurse attended and treated my wife. We were then told we were to be put into quarantine and we were not allowed to leave our cabin for 48 hours. My wife suffered stomach cramps and diarrhoea for about twelve hours. I can assure you that being incarcerated in our inner cabin for two days was horrendous - with nowhere to sit except the bed. We weren’t allowed off in Dublin. This was particularly disappointing, as we had arranged to meet up with an old friend whom we had not seen for six years. We were finally let out of our cabin at 9.30pm on the last night. Our holiday was ruined - it was hell! We know of at least three other people who were similarly affected. The cruise line (CMV Cruises) deny any responsibility. The staff were generally hardworking and pleasant. So would we recommend the fjords as a destination – definitely. Would we recommend the Magellan – definitely not. The ship itself reminded us of a hotel that had once been five star and was now two star. Would we use CMV as a company again – definitely not! Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
Magellan is probably OK for a good weather cruise, but there is insufficient seating and, in this case, poor quality guest lecturers and other indoor entertainment for a wet or windy weather cruise. Enjoyment of the evening shows is ... Read More
Magellan is probably OK for a good weather cruise, but there is insufficient seating and, in this case, poor quality guest lecturers and other indoor entertainment for a wet or windy weather cruise. Enjoyment of the evening shows is limited by poor visibility (due to lots of pillars and non-tiered seating) and the fact that each show only last for 45 minutes (so that they can be repeated for two dinner sittings). The quality of the shows is comparable with a UK holiday camp. Most of the travel in the fjords was at night. This could be to maximise the shore time for the sale of overpriced excursions. To view properly enjoy the scenery, it would probably be better to stay in hotels at a different locations and use smaller local boats to explore the fjords. The value of the excursions is very dependant on the quality of the guide. We had one good one (a Swede in the Orkneys!) and one poor (a Norwegian in Norway whose English was very limited - although the CMV excursion team stated that it is better to book excursions with them as the guides' commentary is in English!). Junior "hotel" staff are good, very helpful and much more guest-friendly than the perception given by the company as a whole. The car park staff are also very friendly and helpful. Bar service could have been better. On the whole the food was of good quality and the service in the restaurants excellent, although the bacon at breakfast could have been better. Although embarkation from Liverpool was straightforward, the CMV directions were poor due to several instances of roadworks. Disembarkation was very straightforward. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
Magellan Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.0 3.7
Dining 4.0 3.6
Entertainment 3.0 3.1
Public Rooms 4.0 3.6
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.1
Family 1.0 3.1
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.5
Enrichment 3.0 2.9
Service 4.0 3.9
Value For Money 5.0 3.6

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