17 Dover Cruises for the Disabled Cruise Reviews

Pacific Princess is the smallest of the Princess fleet, with a capacity of only 670 passengers. When I booked, all the suites were sold out, so I booked a mini-suite, which was later upgraded to Club Class. Right after I paid the fare, we ... Read More
Pacific Princess is the smallest of the Princess fleet, with a capacity of only 670 passengers. When I booked, all the suites were sold out, so I booked a mini-suite, which was later upgraded to Club Class. Right after I paid the fare, we were upsold a forward suite (#7005, Marquesas Suite). I'm always aft, but I love those suite perks, so I jumped on it. This was the largest suite I've ever seen and had a bath and a half, with a wall of closet space, along with all the usual suite perks like that sumptuous Sabatini breakfast. Interestingly enough even though she is very tiny, Pacific Princess never felt crowded, but because she is so small, it was easier for my elderly mother to get around. The food and staff on this ship are amazing, and the maitre d' came by our table at every meal to make sure everything was going well. Chef Giuseppe was the brains behind the original Chefs Table Experience years ago, and we were thrilled to experience Chef's Table with him. This was a great cruise with a great itinerary that we would absolutely do again, no questions asked! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
This was our 37th cruise. Some have had spectacular destinations, some have been full of excitement and entertainment. Until this cruise, the Braemar to and through the Panama canal was overall our best ever cruise. Four days before this ... Read More
This was our 37th cruise. Some have had spectacular destinations, some have been full of excitement and entertainment. Until this cruise, the Braemar to and through the Panama canal was overall our best ever cruise. Four days before this one on Boudicca I received a phone call advising that we had a complimentary upgrade to a 7th deck cabin with terrace and wet room. When we opened the cabin door, Wow!!! So much space - the wet room was brilliant as well. We have never been disappointed with the dining rooms on any of the ships - Braemar stands out a mile in particular at lunchtime, with different flavours of diet bread and butter puddings each day! Most excellent waiters and captain waiter. There have been many cruises with great entertainment each night - one in particular (which was not a Fred Olsen). So to this cruise on the Boudicca. We were amazed by the organisation of the timings of the secret garden being open. There were a few mornings when we were too late for the normal breakfasts, but were able to break our fasts there. One day however we arrived just in time for lunch! The variety of food was most welcoming particularly for two diabetics. Our water glasses were topped up frequently and Captain Waiter seemed to take extra care with us (my wife being in a wheelchair). A big thanks there. We were on ship for the majority of the time and had plenty of options to bide away the time in the way that we wanted. Dolphin racing, bingo, quizzes, relaxing and reading and of course eating and the shows. The comedian, whose name I have forgotten was brilliant. Clean and very funny. Hope Fred Olsen has him as a regular. Stress free is a simple way of saying how enjoyable this cruise was. The place we stayed the most was in our cabin. It was excellent. We are not drinkers or pub people, but we did have our diet lemonades to take back to the cabin, where we played Cribbage. THE WATERFALLS AT goodolfusen (can't spell it) were splendiferous. Well worth a visit. I have an old friend and acquaintance who regularly cruises across the Atlantic and back again, without getting off the ship. A bit surprised at this, but now with this latest experience I can well understand why. Sorry Braemar, but you have been knocked off no.1 spot as the best ever cruise. A big thanks for the crew of the Boudicca for helping to make this one the best ever. Thanks Fred Olsen. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
Just completed the cruises in search of the Northern Lights. Embarkation was very slick and easy, having been picked up from home and transported to Dover by a very efficient and professional driver. A great added bonus with Saga. Cabin ... Read More
Just completed the cruises in search of the Northern Lights. Embarkation was very slick and easy, having been picked up from home and transported to Dover by a very efficient and professional driver. A great added bonus with Saga. Cabin was large, (inside deck 7) bigger than the normal cruise liners we have sailed on like HAL, RCL etc. Decor not quiet up to a brand new cruise ship but plenty of space for hanging clothes and draws . Shower and toilet efficient and clean if a little smaller than the top cruise liners. Dining and entertainment were superb. Top quality, attentive and pleasant staff and all inclusive in restaurants and drinks. The Sapphire was above the mainstream cruise liners and just below the six star Silverseas, Seabourn, Viking cruises which we have done. Value for money, quality, ambiance and enjoyment made for a memorable cruise. Not the last time we will sail with Saga, who have two new ships coming into service. Do not let Saga’s reputation for catering for the very old put you off, this is not true. Whilst it is for the over 50’s the age profile was no different to those other lines like Silverseas, Seabourn, Viking. It did cater very well for those with mobility issues, but I have seen many more mobility scoooters on Caribbean cruises. Lots of people got up dancing to great dance music in both the main Britannia lounge and the Drawing Room. Sunday lunchtime was just fabulous. Lunchtime jazz in the drawing room followed by transitional sunday lunch in the main dining room. Just idyllic. Entertainment was outstanding. Great lectures by Gary Fildes on the Northern Lights and astronomy in general. Had 700 pax enthralled. The cruise was well worth the money just to listen to him speak. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
The embarkation was very swift and smooth. The room staff was brilliant in personality and service throughout the cruise. The trip in general was good however we found issue in relation to a number of the excursions provided by the ... Read More
The embarkation was very swift and smooth. The room staff was brilliant in personality and service throughout the cruise. The trip in general was good however we found issue in relation to a number of the excursions provided by the cruise line. They did not cater for the mobility impaired patrons as well and other cruise lines do. On the tour they are left to their own devices. One shore excursion involved 3 carriages of passengers and only 1 (ONE) guide was supplied. Incorrect information was provided. There appeared to be a large emphasis in the promotion of further cruises and appeared to go overboard at times. We found that ship notices/announcements were available to the cabin however the TV had to be on a certain channel and by the time the TV was turned on or able to be changed to that channel the message was completed and missed. Disembarkation from the ship at Dover was very swift and clean Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
This was our first cruise on a smaller ship and our first to this region. Embarkation was easy and fast, probably because we boarded later due to the long drive from London. Our inside cabin was spacious and had a lot of closet and ... Read More
This was our first cruise on a smaller ship and our first to this region. Embarkation was easy and fast, probably because we boarded later due to the long drive from London. Our inside cabin was spacious and had a lot of closet and shelf space, more than other ships. We were midship and it was easy to get around, even for my handicapped husband. Dining was delicious and our servers were polite and charming. Entertainment was varied and pleasing. Without a big theatre with a stage, the performers were up close and personal. They were all friendly and happy to interact with the audience. Because of my husband's disability, we were offered special treatment; stickers for tours were delivered to our room saving him a walk to the lounge and he was given front seats on the busses. We loved the small ship experience. No lines for elevators, shows or purchases. The bathroom shower was bigger than most with lots of storage in the bathroom. The only thing I missed were onboard activities like book club, fashion show and pop choir. We usually toured in the morning and napped until dinner, although the large, lovely library was a favorite place to relax and read, especially on rainy days. We would definitely go on this ship again, perhaps to anther location. Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
It is important that everyone knows that the O'life promotion if you pick the free excursions they must be booked at least 14 days before sailing. Once on board you can not pick your excursions and will have to pay the full price of ... Read More
It is important that everyone knows that the O'life promotion if you pick the free excursions they must be booked at least 14 days before sailing. Once on board you can not pick your excursions and will have to pay the full price of the excursions. I did not know that so I thought I would pass that information along. This ship Insignia had the best food of any cruise or land based restaurant I have eaten in. We live in downtown Chicago and eat at high end restaurants. The food was better than what we have eaten at top restaurants in Chicago including the Dining Room at the Ritz Carlton or the Four Seasons. The food exceeded what we ate on Regent and Seabourn as well as Windstar. This was not institutional food. Our itinerary included France, Italy, Portugal, and Spain. Ingredients were fresh. Good selections of meats, fruits, vegetables and starches. The bread was delicious with home made bread sticks, rolls and pastries. Milk shakes, smoothies, specialty coffees were very good. The afternoon tea each day was a treat. We started off with an obstructed ocean view. Our cabin steward was exceptional. We upgraded to a superior ocean view and got a new cabin steward. He was good but there was a marked difference between the two. Prior to my cruise I had injured my leg. The first steward had buckets of ice delivered daily before we got back from tour because I always iced my leg when I got back and the room was spotless. The other picked up daily but I noticed dust on shelves, and would have to ask for ice if I wanted it before the nightly turn down - subtle but noticeable the difference between very good and exceptional. The cruise director didn't really speak to us which is different from other Oceania cruises we have been on where the cruise director got to know us and would greet us by name. The cruise hostesses who also sang didn't talk to us either which was different from other Oceania cruises. The shuttle service to town from the ports was nice. The restaurant service was exceptional. The cocktail service in the Horizon lounge was poor. My husband and I don't drink alcohol. It was clear that we were not going to get even "ok" service. People who came in after us were getting alcohol drinks and we would still be sitting there if we had ordered two diet cokes. In the other lounges we had the same problem. It is clear the first level of service goes to alcohol drinkers given they add an 18% tip. We ended up taking board games or cards with us and if we were really thirsty and the drinks didn't come I would get up and go to the bar and then they would bring them. The most conspicuous aspect of our cruise is that we found that many of the workers on the cruise used the horizon lounge as their own area to have drinks, relax and talk. It was unsettling that while we were vacationing not 5 feet away mid to upper level manager workers would be talking about what they did not like about the new management. One lady who managed the spa was let go while we were on board and was due to get off the ship. She was talking to several other women who worked on the ship and they were talking about how she had 10 years of service and so forth. How the new management wanted shorter spa services, how she was a reikki and if passengers wanted it she would provide it etc. And she was not happy about her termination. The women she was talking to also worked on the ship and we weren't trying to listen they were in a very public lounge discussing in normal tone how they did not care for the new management. The cruise director also would kick back with the other singers and people who worked on the ship and they would socialize. They did not interact with the guests and it seemed that they socialized more with each other than be hosts to the guests. They ordered wine and I would see them getting served while we couldn't get our diet cokes. We were on the ship for 19 days and this was a regular occurrence so much so that my husband and I used to joke about it. I got the feeling the management with regard to the entertainment and spa staff was in the air. The pool was clean and I enjoyed the pool deck area. I always got great service around the pool. The deck chairs were comfortable and there was never a problem getting a chair, towel or blanket. My husband used the gym and he likes the treadmills. The first five days of the cruise none of them were working due to a software issue. The security staff I felt went above and beyond. They were always very kind and offered assistance helping me get on and off the ship. I had injured my knee before coming on board and they were exceptional in offering me a hand and also helping me get my Luggie scooter on and off at each port. Traveling with my scooter was a breeze and when we would take the shuttle bus the driver would lower the ramp and on I would drive. I found that most public buses in France, Monaco and Spain had ramps for my scooter. Most of the streets had ramps except I found Livorno more difficult to navigate because there might be a ramp and then I would drive a little ways on the scooter and could find there was no ramp. However, I found overall that having the scooter was wonderful. Pisa was good for traveling with a scooter as was Bilbao, Bordeaux, Paris, London, and Barcelona. Portugal was ok but I did not attempt all the hills in Lisbon rather I got on the hop on hop off bus by the port and did not use the scooter much there. The same in Porto. Overall the ports were great, the food was great the servers in all dining venues were amazing, the entertainment was fine, the spa changed management while I was on the ship and it was a much better environment once the disgruntled employee who I believe was managing the spa when we got on left. The actual workers in the spa were wonderful. The cabin steward was fine and for the most part people were friendly. We didn't care for the concierge he was aloof and not helpful. We found the general manager Victor to be much more helpful than the concierge. Victor always said hello and addressed me by name. I would love to go on another one of his ships. There were three people who worked at guest services. The assistant purser from South America was exceptional. She would look into any concern and went above and beyond. The other two did not want to be bothered and dismissed me without listening and did not want to help me with any concerns. There were several issues because I initially had to cancel my reservation because of my injury but then restated my reservation. As such all my dinner reservations, excursions, and a room upgrade offer had been lost. Would not have been a problem but with the Olife promotion you need to book excursions 14 days in advance and since mine did not auto populate to my second reservation number they were lost as was the upgrade offer. I was getting charged full price for my and hubbies excursions. UGG. However, my TA took care of the problem when I emailed her. Victor the general manager and the assistant purser also helped me and I did get my room upgrade near the end of day three.. The concierge and the other two at guest relations didn't do much and just kept telling me no and they could not help me that it was the main office in Miami not them etc. Victor did correspond with Miami and the lovely woman who was the assistant purser handled crediting my account for the excursion issue. I will definitely travel on Oceania again. We felt this cruise was a great value for the money and enjoyed it despite a few hiccups. Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
Recently returned from Baltic Capitals cruise on board Saga Sapphire which was our first experience with Saga. Everything from being collected at the door to returning home was extremely well organised and went smoothly. The cabin on deck ... Read More
Recently returned from Baltic Capitals cruise on board Saga Sapphire which was our first experience with Saga. Everything from being collected at the door to returning home was extremely well organised and went smoothly. The cabin on deck 10 which was adapted as I am a wheelchair user was a good size with a large wet room and balcony, ideal! The food, and there is plenty of variation, was excellent and always served with a smile. Entertainment was in the main of a high standard and there were plenty of activities on board. Shore excursions are not cheap but are well organised, but there are shuttle buses in the ports that are for the passengers who wish to adventure on their own.Saga Sapphire is a lovely ship with a very happy helpful crew who make sure your cruise is a happy one. All in all a wonderful experience and looking forward to our next cruise on Sapphire. Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
The Great This may take a while. There were so many great things to mention. Disney is great with details. From the "Mickey" shaped face for my daughters ketchup, to the Disney themed menu each night, they really do a great ... Read More
The Great This may take a while. There were so many great things to mention. Disney is great with details. From the "Mickey" shaped face for my daughters ketchup, to the Disney themed menu each night, they really do a great job at providing those little extras in everything they do. The Oceaneer Lab and Club are exceptional. I could barely get my daughter to leave. The staff was friendly and courteous. The actual area was awesome. I wanted to go in in play! I also loved their security features. I never worried about my daughter while she was there. The cabin in clean and large. We actually stayed in a room with just a porthole and never felt like we were missing out or that the room was too tight. It was actually perfect for the three of us. I also LOVED that they had two interpreters for the hearing impaired at every show. We didn't need the services but there was a family there that did. I can tell you- they did an amazing job considering the length of each show. It must have taken a ton of preparation on their part. I am sure they don't receive enough credit so I wanted to mention. Dining in the 3 restaurants was always fun. I loved the Animators Palate. The food was pretty good although it wasn't amazing. The service, however was spectacular and my daughter could always get whatever she wanted even if it wasn't on the menu. The Bad The ports were just okay. We stopped in Newcastle, England (meh), Kirkwall, Scotland (huge disappointment!), Iceland and Norway (which were fab.) I really would recommend that Disney rethink the first two stops. They just weren't that great. Another downside- if you are a first time cruiser with Disney, you don't get on the "special" email about events going on. We overheard someone talking about the character breakfast or we would have never known. We also found out about the princess meet and greet after it was over. Sorry Disney but if I am paying 10k for a vacation, I should have the option to participate in these things. After speaking to numerous cruisers, there is definately a sense that the Castaway Club members are treated better. I get it to an extent, you have to give them perks but when the cruise director walks past your table to focus on those with gold or black lanyards (that they get when boarding), you feel slighted. The Ugly... The spa is a huge letdown. I enjoyed my massage and facial but they are obviously incentivized to sell you on items and they are super pushy. I can't tell you how many times I stated that I did not was facial cream, massage oil, etc. It really was uncomfortable. Overall, I really enjoyed this cruise and will use Disney again. We had a great time and my daughter was in heaven. Well worth the extra money. Just be aware of the downsides. Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
Only ever cruised with Fred. over many years. Black Watch is still to me the best. Excellent food all crew member were excellent Entertainment excellent ( I especially liked the choir performed by some passengers. Some crew ... Read More
Only ever cruised with Fred. over many years. Black Watch is still to me the best. Excellent food all crew member were excellent Entertainment excellent ( I especially liked the choir performed by some passengers. Some crew say when they see me ' Welcome home'. Even remember my name and what I drink. I think of some of crew as friends, however the do not forget all passengers and are always professional. The ship is always spotless and all crew work hard to keep it so. I used to travel with my partner, who was confined in a wheel chair. The seating arrangements at meal times for her was excellent. we always had a table to suit her needs. and spoilt her of many years. Pushing her in her wheelchair we managed to complete many miles around the desk. I now travel alone and now go on most of the trips on port days. I especially liked the cycle trip of about 8 miles (although it was electric cycle full instruction was given to all. Have booked for Iceland for next year, together with two other cruises with Fred. Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
We chose this cruise because it sailed round the u.k. without stopping which suited our purpose because my wife has severe walking problems. The embarkation was superbly handled, the cabin was large, comfortable and clean, the food on ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it sailed round the u.k. without stopping which suited our purpose because my wife has severe walking problems. The embarkation was superbly handled, the cabin was large, comfortable and clean, the food on board was superb and the staff and crew could not have been more helpful. Unfortunately, our cabin was on the wrong side of the vessel for sightseeing so had to go on deck for all viewing which, due to the somewhat misty weather at some ports was not the greatest for viewing. This, of course, was nothing to Saga's detriment. We had early morning tea delivered to the cabin, and were invited to the captain's table on the second night. The only drawback was disembarkation at Dover which resulted in us having to wait 3-1/2 hours before a chair could be found for my wife, this was all ordered at the time of booking but, unlike embarkation when people arrived in dribs and drabs, everyone was disembarking at the same time in Dover. Having said this we are booking another cruise next year and have asked for the same cabin. must say one final word which is about a crew member named Jemma who could not have been more helpful and was always cheerful and ready to assist when required. Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
Never been on a cruise before but have since done my homework on what to expect. Our cruise to the Norwegian fjords on the Ryndam was excellent. These mid size cruise ships have almost the same facilities as the big boys with 3000+ ... Read More
Never been on a cruise before but have since done my homework on what to expect. Our cruise to the Norwegian fjords on the Ryndam was excellent. These mid size cruise ships have almost the same facilities as the big boys with 3000+ passengers. We could always get a sunbed by the pools or on deck. In fact we actually found places to lounge in the sun where no one else was around which amazed us. Food was brilliant and hardly had to queue for anything. Disembarkation on trips was no problem. The staff could not be faulted for their helpful attitudes and we felt privileged to be on board a ship which allowed their wonderful mainly Philippino staff to celebrate their Independence Day and passengers to enjoy the celebrations too. Would thoroughly recommend Holland America's mid sized ships and the experience you will receive. Read Less
Sail Date June 2014
Embarkation in Dover. Quick and fairly simple - mainly because we were fast tracked. Suite ready almost as soon as we boarded. This was after running the gauntlet of the girls dressed in huge pink feathers and the inevitable photographer. ... Read More
Embarkation in Dover. Quick and fairly simple - mainly because we were fast tracked. Suite ready almost as soon as we boarded. This was after running the gauntlet of the girls dressed in huge pink feathers and the inevitable photographer. When will they learn that you are not looking your best at this point. Tell them you are in the 'Witness Protection Scheme' it will go over their heads but what the hell. We had a wet room because it was a disabled cabin. This was good plenty of pressure and nice clean shower curtains. One grievance every other cabin seemed to have four wardrobes we had only ONE and only half of that was hanging space. Only one of us was disabled when we arrived but after scrambling about under the bed to get things out of suitcases I think I might qualify too. Come on Holland America just because you are disabled does not mean that you don't have clothes. Had to resort to hanging formal wear on the hooks designed for the dressing gowns. Cabin Stewards were excellent. Clean towels twice a day and plenty of them. Asked for extra pillows and they were delivered speedily. I won't list the restaurants and bars because they have already been reviewed several times. Except to say that the food in the main restaurant was excellent at breakfast, lunch and dinner. Beautifully presented, hot and served with a smile. Try the cold soups at lunch and dinner. Weird but very very nice. The entertainment was varied. The guy in the Crow's Nest plays the guitar and sings. He sounds just like Neil Diamond and this was before consuming several cocktails. Well worth several visits The String Quartet are excellent and one night they play in the small theatre so you can listen without the chatter in the bar where they usually play. The Piano Bar is fun, themed and full Drinks are on the expensive side but there are Happy Hours which means if you buy one cocktail at $5.95 you can order the second for $1.00 - So you have to drink in multiples of two. Hey its dirty work but someone has to do it. Trips have been reviewed before but treat yourself and book a local company in Russia called T. J. Tours. There were four of us a driver and a guide. I can't praise them enough they were more than excellent. We cleared customs and they were there waiting for us no problems at all Don't worry about Russian customs they are just like customs anywhere. In fact they were even nice to the old couple in front of us who could not find their passports or paperwork. Don't let the ship tell you anything else Disembarkation in Dover is something else. Going you get the up to date clean terminal. Leaving it is a hanger that looks like something out of a world war 2 film. On the up side the porters are terrific and if you need it there are people there to help and it is fairly efficient. Read Less
Sail Date July 2011
This was our fourth cruise, all with NCL, and our second on the Norwegian Sun. The crew was terrific, the activities plentiful, the entertainment better than usual and the food generally exceptional. Our cabin was dandy, and the stewards ... Read More
This was our fourth cruise, all with NCL, and our second on the Norwegian Sun. The crew was terrific, the activities plentiful, the entertainment better than usual and the food generally exceptional. Our cabin was dandy, and the stewards most helpful. The ship is in great shape and user friendly. The main drawback was that we were a long way from either the aft or forward elevator options and the BH has mobility issues. Next time we'll be more sensitive about access. We took all breakfasts in the Garden Cafe aft on 11. I am in the habit of starting earlier than most and often had a hard time finding a cup of coffee and orange to get going. By the time BH was ready for breakfast, the garden cafe was jammed. The food is fine but the atmosphere was grumpy as folks looked for open seats or people willing to share. Most other meals we took in the main restaurant, the Seven Seas, and we were not disappointed by food, service or selection.We shared tables six times and were always glad of the chance to meet new folks and talk about shared interests. Read Less
Sail Date June 2010
On June 12, 2010, my husband and I embarked on a long-awaited 12-day Disney Magic cruise to the Northern European capitals. We had cruised three times previously on Disney Cruise lines, including a 10-day Mediterranean cruise on Magic in ... Read More
On June 12, 2010, my husband and I embarked on a long-awaited 12-day Disney Magic cruise to the Northern European capitals. We had cruised three times previously on Disney Cruise lines, including a 10-day Mediterranean cruise on Magic in 2007 (thoroughly delightful) and two four-day cruises on Disney Wonder, in combination with Disney World packages. We are also Disney Vacation Club members, although we did not use any points for this cruise. We are veteran cruisers, having cruised on RCCL, Princess, Holland America, American Hawaii, Oceania, Delta Queen/Majestic America, and Cunard in addition to Disney (we ended our trip after this recent cruise with our first transatlantic voyage on the QM2). We do not have children, but had found Disney Cruise Lines to be quite amenable in the past to cruisers without children; my elderly father came with us on the Mediterranean cruise and one of the four-day cruises and he really enjoyed it. He was also a veteran cruiser, with 44 cruises under his belt. We boarded the ship in Dover and immediately had an issue. Our assigned cabin was 6588, mid-ships on Deck 6 (balcony cabin). This cabin was located directly across from a self-service laundromat open 24 hours; our room was filled with the smell of bleach and laundry detergent and we could hear people congregating in the laundromat and the hallway, talking loudly (why people were doing their laundry on the first day of the cruise was a mystery). I have severe asthma and could not stand to be around the smell of the chemicals, so we immediately went up to Guest Services to get our room assignment changed. This was a very expensive cruise, costing upwards of $11,000 for two people for a category six cabin, not to mention a one-night hotel stay in London booked through DCL that was nearly $600 and included a lovely view of huge HVAC equipment. We were extremely disappointed that DCL chose to assign us this cabin on the ship in this poor location. The laundromat does NOT show up on the on-line deck plans or on the deck maps that were available at Guest Services, so we did not know about this problem in advance. We were told that any move to another cabin would have to wait until we sailed, due to issues with loading any last-minute travelers. We found out from staff members, while waiting in the public areas, that the cruise was only at 60% capacity and we knew it was highly unlikely that anyone would shell out thousands of dollars on the day of sailing to embark. We finally had to force the issue at 6:30 pm by being extremely emphatic and emotional about not accepting this room (this was ninety minutes after sailing, giving us very little time to unpack). The Guest Services folks finally reacted to my "hissy fit" and moved us to another balcony cabin in a much better location on Deck 7. This issue with the assigned cabin was a negative start to our cruise adventure, but we were happy that it had been resolved, although it took a significant amount of time. On the QM2 transatlantic, we also had an issue with our assigned room due to extreme engine vibration and noise from the Queen's Room, but the staff reacted immediately and offered to move us in the middle of the night. And that cruise was near capacity! In addition to the room assignment problem, we found the ship to be in poor repair (and it was supposedly in dry dock in 2009). This was very surprising, considering how meticulous Disney is about their facilities. There were broken chairs in Animator's Palate, our balcony in our new cabin had big rust spots in several locations, our bedspread looked like it was an original item from the inaugural sailing in 1998, our bathroom floors looked worn out, the plastic deck chairs by the pools were faded and worn out, there were stains in carpets in several locations, lights were not working in Animator's Palate, etc. Once you start seeing flaws, then you see more and more evidence of neglect. The third issue was the quality of the food in the dining rooms, which was wildly variable, veering from almost inedible to above-average in a few cases. The food in Palo was excellent, as usual. Our server could see that we were not happy with the food on the second night, in Lumiere's, when three of us at our table of four had Beef Wellington that was mediocre at best. After that evening, our assigned table-mates disappeared from the dining room for several nights, preferring the Topsider Buffet! Unfortunately, the Disney response to this issue was to be overly solicitous to the point that we were completely annoyed. One evening in Animator's Palate, we had a very decent shrimp and pasta dish, but at the end of the meal our server brought us (without asking) a pork chop dish that we had praised from a previous dinner in Parrot Cay. We were full, but she stood there looking hurt until we ate several bites of the pork chop, treating us like recalcitrant children. My meal the last night (a seafood pasta) was indeed inedible, so this was very disappointing. In contrast, the very low key dining room service on Oceania and Cunard is wonderful and they would never dream of intruding in this manner. The Animator's Palate first-night "show" was also trimmed down in its effects and seemed almost ludicrous. The fourth issue had to do with the incompetence of the shore excursion staff. I have some recent disabilities and use a cane or travel wheelchair, depending on the circumstances. I carefully researched every shore excursion that we booked in advance of this cruise and determined which ones were accessible or would not require much walking. Because of these issues, I would prefer to be near the front of the bus if at all possible so I don't have to try and walk down the narrow aisles. At our first port, we asked one of the staff about getting access to a seat near the front of the bus. He shrugged and told my husband "to run" to the bus pushing me in the wheelchair! At other ports, they were more aware of the need for handicapped seating and helped us get to the bus, but it was always a stressful situation and the rudeness of some of the able-bodied passengers didn't help, as they ran to the bus to get the front rows. This issue culminated in a shore excursion in Saint Petersburg that was advertised as "accessible" but required me to inform the shore excursion staff in advance. I did inform the staff (twice), but was almost forced to walk through the Hermitage, including navigating over 200 steps (I don't do steps well at all). The tour company, at the last minute, brought in a second guide to help us through the Hermitage using the single elevator. The fifth issue: Unruly and uncontrolled children. We have "talked up" Disney to disbelieving adults without children that they can enjoy the experiences on the ship without having issues with the kids. Unfortunately, on this cruise, children were running down hallways and through lounges, cutting in front of disabled persons and making a lot of noise, rivaling the worst we have seen on other family cruise ships. Not sure what happened to the vaunted children's activities. The sixth issue: This was our fourth cruise on Disney, totaling 30 days at sea, but we are still at the "silver" level in the Castaway Club, while someone who has done five 3-day cruises has reached the gold level. The levels do not take into account the cost and length of the cruise at all. After one cruise on Cunard, we are at silver level. Not sure it matters - Disney rarely gives discounts on cruise bookings anyway. The seventh issue: We brought two Bluetooth keyboards with us to use with our iPads on this trip. We put them on the desk in our room and ended up not using them during the cruise. We did not remember seeing the keyboards the day we packed prior to debarkation the next day and they were not in our luggage when we got home. DCL has not yet contacted us about the left items. (We arrived home on July 1 and will contact them after the holiday weekend). Eighth issue: The internet connection was extremely slow and unreliable on Disney Magic. As we had a similar experience on Regatta in March this year, we didn't think much of the situation, until we got on the QM2 and had the same MTN service, but it was very quick and reliable. Interesting... Not all of our experiences on Disney Magic were negative. We thoroughly enjoyed the friendliness of the bar staff, loved hanging out in Cove Cafe (great staff), had terrific character interactions, and the entertainment was good (as always). We do plan to cruise on Disney again next year, a 3-day cruise to check out Disney Dream booked using our DVC points, but we believe they need to resolve some issues that were quite disappointing on this cruise. Being long-time Disney fans, we hope that this was an aberration and not what we can expect in the future.   Read Less
Sail Date June 2010
My husband and I did the 10-Day Norwegian Fjord Cruise on the Hurtigruten MS FRAM, and had a wonderful time! The ship, with a passenger capacity of 315 had just 166 passengers, so there were never any crowds or lines to do anything. I use ... Read More
My husband and I did the 10-Day Norwegian Fjord Cruise on the Hurtigruten MS FRAM, and had a wonderful time! The ship, with a passenger capacity of 315 had just 166 passengers, so there were never any crowds or lines to do anything. I use a wheelchair for mobility. The FRAM handicap cabins are very well suited for someone in a wheelchair, with grab bars over the beds (two single beds), plenty of room in the bathroom with plenty of grab bars, a shower seat, and an automatic door in and out of the cabin. The rest of the ship, with the exception of the uppermost outside deck, is accessible, and there is a toilet on deck four -- the main deck where the main dining room, coffee shop, customer service desk, and meeting rooms are located. Other reviews of Hurtigruten cruises complained about the food. We found the food to be of exceptional quality. Yes, it is Norwegian -- meaning there are lots of fish dishes, fish served in a variety of ways, for every meal. And potatoes, usually plain boiled, but also prepared in other creative ways. There are lots of vegetables, salads, fruits, cheeses, and lovely whole-grain breads and rolls,soups, and desserts. Most of the meals were buffet style -- think "smorgasbord" and maybe you'll appreciate more the way they're served. Norwegians seem to really like the buffet style, and we heard no complaints about the food at all. During the course of 10 days we had lamb, beef, reindeer, fowl, fish, shrimp (and prawns), and all sorts of side accompanying dishes and never felt "bored", or unhappy with our selections. Most sit-down served meals were dinners, including a lovely Captain's Dinner with filet mignon as the centerpiece. If you need to be entertained 24/7, then this cruise is not for you. There are no formal "shows", or movies, or activities. In the evening there was a pianist, and some passengers did sing-alongs and a bit of dancing, but that was about it. There was one night when the crew entertained, as well. Otherwise, the entertainment is the spectacular scenery on every side of the ship, the fjords of western Norway. If you need "shopping guides" then this cruise is not for you. There are shore lectures -- which actually talk about the history and geography of the ports you'll visit, and describe some of the sites you might see, whether you take ship tours or go off on your own. But no "hard sells" for anything. If you need food 24/7, then this cruise is not for you. They have 3 meals a day, and there is plenty of food to be had at each meal (and we did take away some fruit and desserts to snack on later in our cabin), but otherwise there is no other food service. If you need alcohol 24/7, then this cruise is not for you. There is a full-service bar, which starts serving alcohol at 3 p.m. Otherwise there is free coffee and tea available all the time, and soft drinks and bottled water for sale. You CAN bring alcohol on board, but only for consumption in your cabin. There is no "hard sell" for drinks, either. The server circulates, but usually we had to call her to the table, rather than having her at our elbow, wanting to know if we wanted something. If you have children, then this cruise is not for you. There are no special children's programs, babysitters, or services for children. I did see a couple of high chairs...but there were no children on this cruise at all. One a couple of port days (I stayed on the ship for the entire cruise) there were some families allowed on board -- families of crew members who lived at those ports, but they left the ship when the ship moved to the next port. The passengers were mainly folks ages 45 and older, quiet, sedate, refined. Mostly British, some Norwegian, some French, a few of us Americans, and a smattering of other nationalities. The language on board is English, and since there was a large contingent of French, everything "formal" was also announced in French. Because there were so few of us, everyone seemed to find a few folks with whom they were compatible, and spent lots of time together, chatting, and sometimes going off on excursions together. All the crew were pleasant, eager to be helpful, friendly, and went out of their way to help with whatever anyone seemed to need. While on the cruise the volcano erupted, closing airports. Many of the people on the ship were "stranded", but the cruise line worked feverishly for those passengers who had booked air travel with them, to be sure they were somehow accommodated. We had booked our own air, and even we were asked if we needed assistance (we didn't). We LOVED our cruise, and hope to cruise again with Hurtigruten, soon! Read Less
Sail Date April 2010
Well first let me say my husband and I are not fussy travellers, we don't grumble if there's only 2 grapes on a plate instead of 3 (like someone on our table did) but we do expect value for money and on this cruise we certainly ... Read More
Well first let me say my husband and I are not fussy travellers, we don't grumble if there's only 2 grapes on a plate instead of 3 (like someone on our table did) but we do expect value for money and on this cruise we certainly got that. We booked last minute so got a very good deal but even those paying top whack seemed very satisfied. Secondly, this has the view of a genuinely disabled passenger, but I won't harp on about it - we are not yet retired so were 'young ones' on this cruise.Embarkation was smooth, well organised and swift - as soon as I was spotted struggling on two sticks a wheelchair arrived and I was escorted aboard. Our inside cabin was clean and more than adequate,see cabin report. The ship itself was well thought out, but the Neptune Lounge, where the major entertainment was found wasn't quite big enough and it was sometimes difficult to get a seat. There was a large library, good sized card room, plenty of places to sit, relax and in the case of 75% of the passengers, doze off in the afternoon!Day one cruising and getting to know the ship, found all the eateries and generally had a good day.First port of call was Invergordon, Scotland and instead of getting the excursion, we decided to wing it and made our way down to the tourist Information tent, set up especially for the ships visit. They were putting on a small local 3 hour trip for £25 each so we hopped aboard with 4 others and had a wonderful time - we didn't go to any of the usual tourist attractions like Loch Ness, instead we visited Nigg church, saw castles, went to the Dalmore Whisky distillery for a video and wee dram, can't remember it all but we all enjoyed it and the driver was informed and friendly. We then pootled around Invergordon itself (only 250 yards from port) before returning to the ship and rated this a sucessful day.Cruising again and got involved with the quizzes, bingo (unheard of for me but I enjoyed it) pottered around the 2 boutiques, not very big but not very expensive either, got chatting to other passengers, the atmosphere aboard was very friendly. We discovered the Observatory where we spent many an evening peering out to sea in a vain attempt to spot a whale, we did see quite a few dolphins though.Then Iceland and a small town Seydisfjordur - what a quaint place. We decided to try and see what was about and after a half hours potter around the village (that's as long as it took and I walk very slow) caught the local bus to the next town. This cost about £7 each return and took 45 minutes each way with 20 minute stop at the town. We learnt we could have got an earlier bus to spend more time in the larger place but 20 minutes was really enough for us - it was the scenery we wanted and what scenery there was! Small waterfalls, the odd farm settlement, lovely landscape, we loved it.Back aboard and an overnight sail to Akureyri. Never saw much of the place as we had booked our blow-out excursion, £132 each for a whale watching and sightseeing day. Drove for over an hour to the whale watching port where we got aboard to be given mittens, blankets and wet coats! Hello, this is going to be cold...yep! Freezing in the mist and no marine life for 2 and a half hours when the shout rang out, dolphins at 9 o'clock - never saw them, everyone ran to that side and as I am slow I couldn't get there or see over the heads of everyone. Then the cry, whale! My husband manhandled me onto a bench but all I got was a glimpse of fin and gone....! It is a long time since I have felt so disappointed, 3 hours in the cold, misty, damp weather and no real sighting of anything, but we understood that sightings are not guaranteed and the weather hampered any viewings. Lunch lifted the mood in a smart little restaurant, service a bit slow but a good meal, then off to the whale museum (kinda rubbed it in we hadn't seen the real thing!) and a slow drive back for a tour around Akureyi - the tour guide was very informed and spoke excellent english, looked like a lovely place. A day cruising and we slept in so late we missed breakfast! Must have been the rigours of our whale watching attempt. On to the highlight of the tour, Reykjavik. WOW! What a place, without doubt the cleanest city I have ever seen. It has undergone a 20+ year improvement plan and the architecture is wonderful, the city spacious and 2 days was not enough, we want to go back and spend a week there. We had met 2 couples on board and decided to hire a taxi for the day between us as the excursions were very expensive (£132 each for the Golden Circle and £78 for the Blue Lagoon) We paid £300 between the six of us for a 6 hour tour with Siggi, our excellent driver who took us all around the Golden Circle - the advantage is not only monetary, we could also stop as long as we liked at all the tourist attractions - at the Geysers we stayed for an hour and stopped for a coffee too but the waterfalls, although beautiful were a bit dodgy underfoot and as our companions were all 75 and over we stayed only a half hour at each of them. The landscape is incredible - I found it hard to take in the Lava Fields caused when a volcano erupted thousands of years ago, the lava ran 80kms across Iceland and still nothing grows there after all these years. The lava fields are so barren and then suddenly you are back to green and plentiful again.After a fabulous day we asked about the Blue Lagoon on day two and Siggi did us a deal - £100 for the Lagoon and tour of the city all in. We met him at 9.30 and he gave us a great 3.5 hour tour, taking us all around the city (we discovered later he had added a couple of places that the ships tour never visited) and the Blue Lagoon is amazing - we spent over an hour wandering around the place (but never went in) stopped for a coffee and relaxed. Lovely. Please note we were blessed with the weather - Siggi said the temperature was the highest it had been for ages, the skies were blue, it was warm and sunny, I dare say the whole place wouldn't have quite the same magic in the rain. Farewell to Reyjkavik and very sad. A day and a half cruising and then the Faroe Islands. Now, I will tell you I am a bit anti Faroes due to their passion for clubbing whales to death on the beach in their annual ritual but I must say we liked it. Scenery very like Scotland/Lake district, and we decided to take the Panoramic coach tour and our guide, Hilda, was excellent. At a couple of stops I didn't get out of the coach as it was difficult terrain and we sat chatting to the driver who gave us loads of info on the place, it seemed a very friendly island (unless you are a whale) but bear in mind we only met 2 Faroese!Cruising overnight yet again and finally Dublin. We had paired up over the cruise with a great couple from Lancs and decided to go to Dublin together. A free shuttle was provided by the ship which dropped us off just around the corner from the hop on, hop off tour bus, and we boarded what must have been the best bus of the place - our driver was a comedian who regularly sang to us and we were loath to get off! Decided to visit the Jameson Distillery and lucky for us both my husband and our friend were picked to do the whisky challenge.... several whiskies later (and the ladies got a double too) we staggered out in fits of giggles and worse for wear to wander over the bridge and into the oldest bar in Dublin, the Brazen Head, est 1199, for lunch and a guiness. Can't remember much about the remainder of the afternoon but the photos show we enjoyed ourselves!Back aboard and the trip home, a kind of slow depression came on us as we realised our holiday was all but over...then it happened - we were stern of ship when I saw a spurt of water and a huge black and white head came up once, twice and then dived deep into the sea, a killer whale! At last! My holiday was complete!Back home and an early alarm call at 4 am when the engines roared to dock. Early breakfast then a quick easy disembarkation, we were on the road by 9 am.Overall I would rate this cruise 9 out of ten, the food was excellent, the staff excellent, friendly and helpful, entertainment good (catch the comedian, he's great) my only 2 complaints would be 1. the in-cabin tv did not give much, just intermittent world news and a couple of odd channels, would have liked a better choice of film (pay to view aimed mostly at kids) and a channel that you could watch in the evenings as you snuggled down to bed. 2. the excursions were expensive but luckily not compulsory. Not much to moan about. My biggest bugbear was the passengers pretending to be disabled, and there was several of them. As I booked late I was unable to take my wheelchair aboard as the spaces had been taken but some of those who did take them didn't seem to need them until excursion or disembarkation! One woman in particular ran about ship all fortnight (not a limp or a stick, even in rocky waters) and her chair suddenly appeared once we got to port so she could jump the queues. As someone disabled since childhood I was furious but accept Fred Olsen can do nothing about it - they had at least provided wheelchairs on ship so I used one of those on board and managed to get about on my two sticks at most of the ports. But it is infuriating, rather like the Blue Badge scheme when so many abuse the system and make it so difficult for the genuinely disabled. But I didn't let the b****ds spoil my holiday!Can't praise this trip highly enough, it had everything if you like dramatic scenery, wildlife (there were several excited birdwatchers aboard) good food, good company and excellent service. We found the overall feel of the ship very friendly and relaxed but we are outgoing and social by nature and met some lovely people aboard. Of course there was the odd sourpuss but they're everywhere in life! Iceland may not be to everybodys liking but we absolutely loved it and are definetely going back one day, the sooner the better. And we've already booked another Fred Olsen cruise....... Invergordon, not on the list!Quiet pleasant town, about 250 yards from port. Bus stop in main street for Inverness. Small supermarket, tourist information, charity shop, pub. Not a place you could spend 6 hours in, you need to get the bus, a tour or taxi to explore. Tourist information tent set up on the way into town with very friendly people there to help you. If I go again I would rent a car via the internet for the day to go explore, or get the local tour available from the tent. Seydisfjordur - not on listTourist information is just inside the cafe after you clear customs, then a short walk into the village. This is very small with little in it, a coffee shop, a couple of gift places, a bar, all these surround a small lake. Very lovely village but you need to get out and explore more - the local bus goes to the next village but if you don't fancy that this may be a place where you should get one of the excursions as there's not much else to do. Akureyri - not on listWe took an excusrion from here so can't give much advice. Sorry. It is a large town/small city and looks to have lots going for it, other passengers rated it highly. We did the tour of the city and would like to have had more time there to investrigate Reykjavik - not on listOn arrival you go out through customs, just a few yards from the ship. There is a shop there with loads of tourist leaflets and you can hire a car or book tours. We found a chap touting taxis outside the shop and 6 of us booked one between us - it sounds expensive at £300 for the day, but between six it is less than half the price of the ships excursion and you have more control. The taxi driver was knowledgable and knew exactly where to go. We had thought of hiring a car (around £200 for the day) but would have missed an awful lot, where do you go? This was the place to go whale watching - there were two or three tours from the ship (and you could probably get one from the shop too) and they all saw loads of whales and dolphins. The city itself is some way from the port so you would need a bus/taxi to get right to the city centre, well worth the trip, the streets and shops are quaint, easy walking by the look of the pavements and very clean. Some of the tourist attractions are some way out of the city (the water carriers for example were on the edge with a view over the entire city) so you would need some mode of transport to see it all. The old harbour is a long walk away but interesting. Bear in mind we saw all this from a car so difficult to work out walking distance but it all looked a long way to me!Do the Golden Circle and Blue Lagoon trips one way or another, it really is too good to miss. Faroe IslandsWe were booked on the panoramic trip so left the ship and got straight on the bus. Toured the capital Torshavn and ventured out to a small village where there was an old viking settlement, and on to a wood cutters place near the sea (inaccessable to any one with walking difficulties) It is lovely scenery wise, saw a bit of wildlife, mainly birds and hares, and some of the beaches. Only 5 hours here so little to do, don't know if there was a tourist information place anywhere, but the tour is well worth the money (£26) Read Less
Sail Date July 2009
First Carnival cruise - Jubilee - about 15 years ago. This was a Panama Canal (part way in) to near the Equator...NO AIR CONDITIONING!!! No, it didn't break down on our cruise; it actually broke on the cruise before ours. Of ... Read More
First Carnival cruise - Jubilee - about 15 years ago. This was a Panama Canal (part way in) to near the Equator...NO AIR CONDITIONING!!! No, it didn't break down on our cruise; it actually broke on the cruise before ours. Of course, they didn't bother to tell any of the passengers who were boarding for the next trip...nor did they try to fix the A/C. Heaven help you if you were a diabetic...the only sugar reduced dessert was yellow cake. Every night they did change the frosting to another color and they gave it a different name (i.e., pink was strawberry; yellow was lemon; green was mint, etc., etc.). Okay, this was an old ship even at that time but it was always very dirty (perhaps, it was also too uncomfortable for the crew to keep things shipshape (no pun intended). After this cruise, my husband and I swore we would never sail with Carnival again. So much for swearing...move forward about 15 years... Our second (and, without a doubt our very last, forever, no way) cruise was on the Splendor. It was a brand new ship with only two voyages before ours. It was cruising out of Dover, England and would be visiting Northern Europe/Baltic ports. Our brother and sister-in-law talked us into joining them on this trip. Although we were very hesitant to go on this cruise, we decided we would give Carnival another try. I mean a brand new ship - how bad could itt be? Pretty bad, if you want my opinion. . We were on the Spa deck (10) in a handicap room (at the very front of the ship - there are two locations on board the ship for handicap access rooms (the very front or the very back (right next to the crew's metal stairway!). The doorways to these cabins have a wall opposite them making maneuverability difficult if you're using a motorized scooter. They door to the room does open automatically to let you get in when you put your card in the slot (we didn't know about this feature until we were five days into the trip because the door was not functioning when we got on the ship). One problem with that was that the door automatically closed whether you were in the room or in the doorway...smash!!!!!!!!!!! goes the door into your scooter, leg, etc. . Food was alright (nothing special). The desserts (sugar-free) were the same as on our first cruise... The food court was very disorganized and at some points on the line you actually had to reach across food to get to other food (yuck!). . The Styrofoam carvings were - well - there! Ugly - if they didn't want to do fruit carvings or ice carvings... okay, but Styrofoam with plastic flowers just didn't meet our standards. . Shore excursions - who knows! If you were unable to walk well or couldn't climb steps - you needn't bother to book any tours. You can get off the ship and ride your scooter or wheelchair up and down the dock - but, don't expect to go sightseeing. I could go on and on, but I won't. I would like to add one bit of information though, 10 years prior to this cruise we went on the Royal Princess to the same ports (with the exception of Germany) and it was FABULOUS!!! Read Less
Sail Date August 2008

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