198 London (Greenwich, Tower Bridge, Tilbury) Senior Cruise Reviews

Introduction: This was our first CMV cruise and was booked after a disappointing Xmas 2015 & New Year cruise to the same destination with a competitor cruise line. We booked with CMV and then read the earlier reviews, so we were ... Read More
Introduction: This was our first CMV cruise and was booked after a disappointing Xmas 2015 & New Year cruise to the same destination with a competitor cruise line. We booked with CMV and then read the earlier reviews, so we were concerned that we were in for another disappointment ... Nothing could be further from the truth - the whole cruise experience was really good and the new Captain has changed the service quality immeasurably. Crew members all smile, service is quick and efficient and everything happens in the background, leaving the passenger to enjoy the cruise instead of worrying about the next problem. The Captain and his senior Officers are available (and very visible) throughout each day and give passengers adequate time to raise concerns or issues, without any hint of the 'corporate brush-off' response. The Executive Chef even visited each table at the Dinner Sitting to gain feedback. Embarkation: The Long Stay Car Parking is about 1 mile away from the Cruise Terminal and Shuttle Buses run back and forth - it's a bit of a bun-fight with tight parking slots and trying to avoid passengers wandering across the traffic path towing cases, bags and other appendages. The process is slightly chaotic but it works. Inside the Cruise Terminal, the process is much smoother - there is a separate Waiting Lounge (faded charm, peeling plaster but rather like an Agatha Christie film set) and timed booking-in slots were operating so that, even with a full complement of 1250 passengers, the queuing was kept to a minimum and the process was very smooth and efficient. On board, a crew member escorted us to our cabin - a really nice touch, and checked that door keys worked before returning to guide the next passenger. The Cabin Review is in a separate section. Ship Layout: Slightly quirky - you can only access the full length of the ship at the top and lowest decks since the middle of the ship is devoted to the Galley that serves both restaurants. So, you need to know whether you're aiming for the stern or the prow before leaving the cabin - for the first couple of days, lost souls were wandering the decks muttering 'Is it the rear or the front I need to get to?' as they familiarised themselves with the layout. Lifts are quite small and, with an ageing and often mobility-limited client group, in constant demand. If you need to use the lifts, be prepared to wait up to 2 minutes for one to become available. This was a source of annoyance for several customers. Staircases are quite steep - using them will get you fit! - and the stair riser on some staircases slopes back into the staircase (to create extra space for those size 13 shoes?) and this take a wee while to adjust to. Crew Members are cleaning handrails, lift entrances and the public areas constantly to minimise the risk of infection. Despite this, and the hand-cleansing machines and notices everywhere, passengers still feel they have the right to refill their own water bottles and to return excess food to the serving trays so the coughing starts - grrr! CMV needs to employ a retired schoolteacher from the 1960s so that (s)he can use a wooden ruler to rap the knuckles of any passenger ignoring the food hygiene rules ... Dining: We were allocated First Sitting in the Waldorf Restaurant on a Table for 8. A combination of poor handwriting, inaccurate transcription of the Dining Cards from the computer records and passengers not having their reading glasses meant that we had 12 different guests for the 8 seats over the first 4 days! Eventually (back to Agatha Christie), the Maitre d' appeared at the Table with pad and pen and requested cabin numbers and names so that he could solve the 'Whodunnit' of the Dining Room - of the 12 people trying to get in the 8 seats, 10 were very pleasant so we had a good final selection of fellow diners! Zin and Min (Waiter and Wine Waiter) were first rate and very friendly, seeing the humour of the changing guests until the 'real 8' diners were identified. Menus were decent - safe, unadventurous food in sensible portions. The temperature of the food could have been a wee bit hotter on occasions. We took the £85 Alcohol Package (5 bottles of reasonable quality wine (equivalent to supermarket 'Dine In' promotions - safe but decent quality) and 10 bottles of water) since we do not drink much alcohol. Unused wine is stored until the next meal and there was no noticeable deterioration in its quality. Wine can be bought by the glass for £5 or you can pay £17 per person per day for the Unlimited Drinks Package. We started using the Raffles Bistro fro breakfast, lunch and afternoon tea, but it was often tight for space so finding a table could resemble the Saturday morning drive around the multi-storey car park for the Space that is supposed to be available. The lunch-time deadline return from port visits in Santa Cruz and Gibraltar caused a wee bit of a logjam with diners exceeding available spaces until the Maitre d' began gathering up lost souls and directing them to the restaurants. The Bistro has no table cloths during the day and the layout has evoked descriptions of 'canteen' in appearance with several tables having bench seats along the wall as the perimeter tables run the length of the room. The layout gets the most 'bums on seats' and it gives you a chance to meet lots of fellow cruisers - it's a lively atmosphere that works well, if a little spartan on the furnishings. The Bistro food is the same as in the main restaurants and the range is decent - not spectacular, but you won't starve (I am a very picky eater and managed to find enough variety, albeit in combinations that would have made the chef weep) and there is no problem with taking further portions. Empty serving trays were replenished promptly, but the pressure of a full complement of passengers and the rigid hygiene rules of not re-using plates when taking a second portion (food hygiene and cleaning regimes throughout the ship are scrupulous) sometimes meant a delay whilst new plates and cutlery arrived - nothing major and 'Hunt the Plate' gives a wee bit of exercise to burn the extra calories ... Plenty of serving/support staff (all of whom smile and try to make polite conversation - there's been a big effort to engage with passengers) to clear plates and guide passengers around the serving stations (Mushrooms and Hash Browns sit in a separate Serving Station from the rest of the cooked breakfast components). Quirky, but it works well as does the small queue to have a freshly fried egg rather than scooping up one that has been pre-cooked and then left to sunbathe under the warming lights ... Entertainment: The Carmen Duo classical music act is very good and their show in the Magellan Lounge was excellent - the only complaint is that the sho did not last longer. The Duo also played each evening in Hampton's Bar (3 or 4 sessions of 20-25 minutes) to an appreciative audience. The Magellan Entertainment Team, led by Raul, the Assistant Cruise Director, work very hard to provide a fresh face to the 'song and dance' staple offering. The 'Abba' Evening was done very competently and was very enjoyable. I am a Queen devotee and hoped that the 'Queen' Evening wouldn't be too bad - alas it was. The 'Abba' production showed that there are very capable singers - the 'Queen' production was simply too ambitious and, as a fellow fan observed, 'After the second murder, I called Quincy, MD. to arrange the autopsies ...' Raul and the crew led the 'Sail Away' singing to great effect - it was energetic and well received, confirming that the 'Queen' production had been too ambitious. Guest Lecturers were good - Sue Walsh and Alan Oliver. The latter is a more academic presenter who would get you through your exams, but who is a little too academic for cruise entertainment. Sue Walsh is a very enthusiastic bird watcher, ringer, conservation volunteer - her enthusiasm for her subject shines through, even though she some times became carried away and talked about the subject matter of the next 2-3 slides, leaving a few 'Err, ums ...' until she recovered from realising that she had just spent a couple of minutes covering the content of the new slide! Sue was very happy to talk to passengers outside the lecture stints and to share photos and information from her Tablet. Very enjoyable. Shore Excursions: We booked quite late so several excursions were fully booked - no problem for us since this cruise was to visit destinations that the previous cruise company had cancelled over Xmas 2015 and New Year. We made our own way in each port and encountered no problems. Courtesy buses were available, albeit stipulated on a couple of occasions as being for those passengers with mobility difficulties. In practice, these passengers were given priority and then it was 'first come, first served' for everyone else. It was particularly nice not to have to pay for the Courtesy buses - a nice gesture that CMV and the Port Authorities deserve credit for providing. Julie, the Customer Services Manager. was high profile during the Shore Excursions process, and her cheerful, warm Lancashire voice was a delight. Her update announcement at Gibraltar - 'Ladies and Gentlemen, it's not cloudy - I've just been down at the quayside - I'm from Lancashire and I know rain - it's absolutely lashing it down so DO, please take your coats and umbrellas' was very well received. Some passengers felt that Magellan could have stayed longer at some ports - a matter of personal choice. My wife and I were unable to go ashore at Lisbon because we had picked up the coughing sickness that someone had kindly brought aboard. Those who did remarked on the queues at the local pharmacy to purchase paracetamol etc. Disembarkation: This is probably the weakest element. The baggage collection from cabins on the previous night was very smooth, albeit slightly noisy as cabin crew began the portering about midnight and cabins had to be vacated by 07:00 the next morning. 07:00 and lots of passengers, carrying hand luggage, scrabbling for lifts and then restaurant/bistro space was all a wee bit chaotic. Breakfast was over by 09:00 and there was then up to 2 hours wait for disembarkation. Seats were at a premium (if all else fails, aim for the Magellan Show Lounge - it's dark and a wee bit cold but you can sit comfortably). Toilets were at an even bigger premium as the (already limited by original design) public WCs were closed down for cleaning and maintenance - lots of frustrated, ageing working class males, roaming the decks whilst describing their impending incontinence is not a happy spectacle. I found a working toilet at my 6th attempt - this is not good enough and let the previous high organisational performance slip. London Cruise Terminal does not have enough baggage trolleys for the 1250 passengers so people had to queue for a trolley; then queue to leave the terminal; then queue to reach the Shuttle Buses to return to the Long Stay Car Park which was heaving because of the arrival of new passengers for the Norwegian Fjords Cruise. If you watch Rugby and wonder why players are not allowed to carry suitcases into the scrum, you will have a picture of the organisation under strain ... The organisers were run off their feet getting exiting passengers away and coping with new arrivals whilst a succession of taxis and private care were dropping new passengers off at the Cruise Terminal. After vacating our cabin at 07:00 and being called for disembarkation at 11:00, it was almost midday when we left the Cruise Terminal and 12:40 before arrival the Long Stay Car Park - quite a fraught process overall. There needs to be more trolleys and more frequent Shuttle Bus journeys to free up bottle necks. Summary: I recommend prefacing any review with 'Looking at the price we paid' before making criticisms. I heard several comments from fellow passengers that 'The food is not as good as xyz cruises and it's not available round the clock' etc. We paid £52 per person per day (and we could have saved £5 per person per day by choosing a cheaper cabin) for 14 nights cruising, with 6 ports of call over 4000+ nautical miles on a full board basis with free entertainment provided. Our budget pre-cruise hotel cost us £35 per person for accommodation only! The cruise was well organised, staffed by a friendly and competent crew who provided great service and who made us feel like people rather than cabin numbers. CMV promise 3.5 star service but get closer to 4 star - they could provide more of the pampering, more choice of menu items, fluffier towels etc but not at the prices they charge. I was very apprehensive about the booking after I had read the reviews. My experience has been very positive - a good, value-for-money, decent holiday that was better than CMV indicated. My wife and I have already booked our next cruise on the Magellan (Norway on 17th April 2016 - just about time to get the holiday washing dry before we meet up with the Captain and Crew again); we are really looking forward to the experience! Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
I will not re-state the title because we had a wnderful cruise. The food was excellent, the crew were excellent and the entertainment was excellent. The itinerary was as expected and enjoyable. The weather was as expected and ... Read More
I will not re-state the title because we had a wnderful cruise. The food was excellent, the crew were excellent and the entertainment was excellent. The itinerary was as expected and enjoyable. The weather was as expected and changeable. If we had just pulled out into mid-Atlantic and gone round in circles, I would not have complained. The evening buffets/ displays should really have been photographed not eaten. I am not a wine buff but the house wines were good and much enjoyed. Embarkation at Tilbury was good, disembarkation was a little chaotic but we got there in the end. We had a table for four (163) where the bench seats were a bit low and my wife asked for (and was given) a cushion but if this is a complaint, it is a small one. The cabin was comfotable (6150) but I would have preferred a cabin with a bit of daylight - but this was my fault not CMV's. Overall - great!! Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
We have recently returned from a cruise from TILBURY to the Canary Is. Lisbon Gib and Madeira on the Magellen. All up, I suppose the whole thing prob cost about £1000pp to include upgraded inside cabin, drinks package, parking at Tilbury, ... Read More
We have recently returned from a cruise from TILBURY to the Canary Is. Lisbon Gib and Madeira on the Magellen. All up, I suppose the whole thing prob cost about £1000pp to include upgraded inside cabin, drinks package, parking at Tilbury, tips etc. We had on offer: a child free enviroment, four meals a day, three served at a table, bedroom and bathroom cleaned, transported to various countries/ locations, shows every night, entertainment pool side, quizzes, bars galore, lectures, a library , fabulous friendly helpful staff, a great fun Captain and a wonderful selection of people to pal up with or not depending on your choice. So if anyone can tell me better value for money - I'll book it! Thoroughly enjoyed our time on board!! Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
Just before our Cruise, we received the final documents from CMV and noted our Cabin had been changed from 5092 to 7188, a choice no one would freely make. I rung CMV and despite protesting they refused to change back to the one booked, ... Read More
Just before our Cruise, we received the final documents from CMV and noted our Cabin had been changed from 5092 to 7188, a choice no one would freely make. I rung CMV and despite protesting they refused to change back to the one booked, stating you checked the upgrade box, basically tough luck. As we found out later, this turned out to be a DOWNGRADE. Difficult to understand what was, "superior plus" about this cabin. It should noted that apart from one night this cabin 7188 remained empty, the reason it was occupied was because their cabin became flooded on deck 5. They quickly returned the next day. Other people knew people someone from a previous cruise, who had complained about this cabin. We arrived at the car park at 11.00 hours for an 11.30 boarding to be confronted with total chaos. There were no porters to assist you with your luggage, joined a long queue shuttling along with our cases, eventually boarded a double decker bus, totally unsuitable for many to get upstairs. How fortunate it was not raining. Eventfully arrived at the main terminal to be confronted with long queues, eventfully boarded at 12.45. Our last case arrived during the life boat drill, sometime after 16.00 hours, which was longwinded & disorganised. Our initial thoughts on the cabin were encouraging, reasonable size, as was the shower. But limited storage, and our cabin steward was very helpful. We arrived at the Waldorf restaurant and had a most enjoyable meal, table companions & service were very good. Eventually we returned to our cabin, and things went downhill rapidly, noise from the propellers was worse than expected, and we were subjected to loud metallic banging and repetitive vibrations all night. It was as if a metal door were swinging freely, and slamming closed. We were advised by others that it was a wire rope and there was nothing that CMV could do about it, or were prepared to do. Complained to Customer Service they advised that the ship was full and consequently there was nothing they could do. During the second enjoyable meal one of our table companions was missing, she was in sick bay having fallen over and either broken or dislocated her hip. One of many to fall over and injure themselves. Was advised that cruise ship arrived at Tilbury with quite a few less passengers, as CMV have not disputed this figure it must be correct. If so, one must question whether this ship is suitable for its itinerary the cliental it aims at. Endured a second sleepless night and complained to Customer Service again, and advised that there nothing they can do. Later in the day we were contacted by Customer Service that another cabin 7059 was available as it appeared to much quieter, so we moved in, how wrong we were. The cabin was even worse, again we complained to Customer Service, and requested that can someone come and have a look at it. Eventually a carpenter arrived, he tried his best hammering corks in, in various parts of the ceiling, all to no avail He advised the whole wall panel needed to be removed to resolve the problem. Next day we went to Customer Service and advised the tapping problem had not been resolved, they requested a report from the Carpenter, he inspected the cabin again and reported that the problem had been resolved. Customer Service advised that as no one had complained about the cabin before, which was totally untrue. Consequently, we had to endure another sleepless night. After leaving Gibraltar, the Ship started cruising at high speed in turbulent water and the noise in 7059 was unbearable, we went the Customer Service and demanded that we come and inspect the cabin, he refused, however they arranged for someone to inspect the cabin, he agreed that it very bad. We were then offered 7087 as a night cabin, however this turned to be not much better, because the speed the ship was travelling at, and the vibration from the prop shaft, even the fan in the bathroom was rattling badly. Yet another sleepless night, it was so bad that my wife returned to the 7059. During the day the Captain reduced the speed to about 10 knots, which significantly reduced the noise level, why he found it necessary to travel at high speed at first, who knows. After returning to our day cabin 7059, there was what I describe as a very condescending letter from Julie Thompson and a bottle cheap house red wine (cost to CMV about £2.50), two wine glasses, but no corkscrew, how typical. I would add that the next day when I went to reception to pick up a news letter, the person I dealt with the night before saw me coming & looked the other way & totally ignored me. At at no time were we asked is everything okay during the rest of the cruise. Later on the Cruise another couple on our table complained about noise in their cabin at low speed, they were immediately offered a quiet sleeping cabin and deck 5, at no time where offered this option. I won't go into other problems we had with Customer Service, few seen able sort out even simple problems. Needless to say, we will never cruise with CMV, and well over 80% of the people we spoke to, felt the same. As a company, they seem to have little respect for customers. They must be aware that cabin 7188 is noisy and customer service on the ship were certainly aware of the problems with 7059. Last but not least, within a few days many people starting coughing, including myself after about 5 days. In the second week all three ladies on our table had several days in bed. Even now, my wife is very poorly, and a x-ray confirmed she has a lung infection. This is a major problem that will be difficult to eradicate, I feel sorry for the people on the next cruise. An email similar to the above was send to CMV on Tuesday, to date no response. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
On a previous cruise with Cruise and Maritime (Marco Polo) we found the service and the attitude of all staff friendly and helpful. food was good and the general atmosphere pleasant and accommodating. The experience on the Magellan was ... Read More
On a previous cruise with Cruise and Maritime (Marco Polo) we found the service and the attitude of all staff friendly and helpful. food was good and the general atmosphere pleasant and accommodating. The experience on the Magellan was the same. We would cruise with them anytime. The cruise was also excellently priced - much less than many others for the same destinations. The entertainment was geared to the people who were on board and the standard of performance and presentation compares with the best in the entertainment world. The ship is well presented, facilities on board were of a very high standard. The attenton given to hygiene was meticulous and ensured that there was no illness on board as experienced by other shipping lines. The staff kept us well informed about the venues we were about to visit and made sure that procedures were well explained so as to ensure timely arrivals and departures. Very enjoyable experience. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
On arriving at Tilbury for our in search of the Northern light cruise, our cases were taken porter, into the boarding area, within minutes called to board Magellan, on board quickly. Escorted to our cabin, this was a first well done CMV, ... Read More
On arriving at Tilbury for our in search of the Northern light cruise, our cases were taken porter, into the boarding area, within minutes called to board Magellan, on board quickly. Escorted to our cabin, this was a first well done CMV, cases outside waiting. M&M luggage label missing, reported to reception, flippant receptionist told us to claim on insurance, CMV does not take responsibility for luggage!!!!. On going into cabin, smell of diesel over powering, could not get in until ship sailed. When Magellan refuelled, diesel smelled appeared again and again. What brain of Britain decided to put A/C and heating controls in the ceiling is beyond comprehension. We paid for a outside cabin with a window, however the window was filthy dirty from the Amazon cruise and was not cleaned in our 14 days aboard, would have booked an inside cabin. Lack of lifts, some sections had 4 lifts only 2 working, you had to wait forever to get a lift. Walking up the stairs was like climbing a mountain, so steep, still the exercise was good. The entertainment was awful, dancers who could not keep time, singers that sang out of tune and screeched, but they thought they were fantastic, a drag act that took the micky out of a female that had lost her first husband, outrageous. Leaving the ship in port, the gangway had to be negotiated with extreme care, in some ports you had to bend so low, if you did not suffer from back problems you may now. Gangways held by rope, and very rickety, how people in wheel chairs managed God knows. In general the staff were fantastic, helpful and friendly, dining in the Kensington restaurant was fine, made better by the four other fantastic people we dinned with. Shore excursions are outrageously expensive. when we disembarked from Magellan, we spoke to a supervisor in the baggage hall regarding the missing luggage label, and was told some one took a liking to that label, but if it turns up I will post it to you. Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
This is a cruise I will not repeat the ship was uncomfortable the air con was far too cold The bistro restaurant was very dificult to get a seat and the food was not good too cap my Trip the ship had 8 deaths . Trips were cancelled ... Read More
This is a cruise I will not repeat the ship was uncomfortable the air con was far too cold The bistro restaurant was very dificult to get a seat and the food was not good too cap my Trip the ship had 8 deaths . Trips were cancelled due to bad weather and out of 15 days we had 7 days at sea with very little to do on board the entertaiment was very poor it was more like children,s the Gratuities were high and there were long lines of passengers including myself taking This amount off of our final bill overall the prices for items on board were very high ie photos , Disembarkation was a farce out of your cabin by 10am got of the ship at 14.30 and seats were at a premium as for using this line again I would never not my ideal holiday by a long way Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
Our departure from Tilbury was pretty chaotic. We travelled to the ship on their coach from London Coach Station and the last quarter of a mile took about 90 mins. The ship had arrived late from their previous cruise (the Canaries I ... Read More
Our departure from Tilbury was pretty chaotic. We travelled to the ship on their coach from London Coach Station and the last quarter of a mile took about 90 mins. The ship had arrived late from their previous cruise (the Canaries I think), because of terrible weather and so embarkation was backing up. However when we eventually arrived at the terminal everything was done speedily. Once aboard we were impressed by the size and layout of our sea view cabin on deck 4 and the speed with which our luggage was delivered. This was a 6 week cruise to the Canaries, the amazon, West Indies and The Azores. This was our view of the Ship. FOOD. Excellent. We had early dining (6.15pm). There were five courses which were well cooked and well presented. As well as the days main meals (usually about 5 options) there was always Salmon fillet and breast of chicken available. The waiters were lovely and most helpful. We were on a table of 8 and two of them were quite specific about their requirements. The waiters had no problem with this. There was a large buffet available for those who preferred less formal dining. Breakfast and lunch could be in the dining rooms or the buffet and there was a wide selection. Staff were most pleasant and helpful. There was also an outside buffet with burgers, sausage, chips for people who preferred 'fast food' and there was a pizza bar in the buffet. Ice cream was always available. ENTERTAINMENT. I thought that the entertainment was excellent. The main show had a troupe of dancers, mostly from the Ukraine, who were extremely talented and performed in a huge variety of shows over the 42 days of the cruise. The Magellan Orchestra (more of a band really) were again Eastern European and were extremely talented. The bandleader played trumpet and was accompanied by a saxophone, lead and base guitar, drummer and keyboard player. They leant towards modern jazz but could play everything else as well. There was also a concert pianist, a pianist and violinist duo, a Filipino duo who sang and played 'easy listening' for dancing and seven vocalists who did the shows, some late night entertainment and ran the quizzes, Mr & Mrs etc. Mostly they were very good singers and they were certainly very hard working. Several other entertainers joined, did a few performances and left at the next port of call. Because of the length of the cruise there were a lot of other activities to keep passengers occupied and I (together with 30 others) learned to play five chords on a ukulele and performed 12 songs at the end of the cruise for a large and appreciative audience. My wife and I also joined the choir and again put on a show at the end. There was also handicraft, Bridge etc. There were some excellent lectures during the day and they were well attended. FITNESS. That was a bit of a disappointment. They gym was well stocked but too small. There were aerobics, pilates and/or yoga on sea days but they were mostly put on by the dancers (who were extremely fit but not fitness instructors) and it was a bit of a mess with no proper venue for them to take place. PORT EXCURSIONS. I thought they were very good and reasonably priced compared to other cruises I have been on. In most of the ports we called at it was easy to get five or six in a minibus and have the same trip for far less. Because this was January in the Atlantic, we had some periods of very stormy weather and on about five of the days those of us on the lower decks with sea views had our windows covered in steel plates. Personally I think that was a sensible precaution. We had to stay overnight in one port because the loading gear had failed and they could not raise the tender back into position. We left another port early to get ahead of a storm that was forecast but again I thought that was sensible. Most of the people on the ship were retired and I would imagine that the average age was in the late 60's (I am 71). I got the feeling that there were some people on the ship who would never travel with the company again and some who had booked their next trip with them. Myself and my wife would have no qualms about another cruise with this cruise line. Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
The Ship itself: The Magellan is the noisiest, creakiest, most unstable ship that we have been on. If you don’t mind a rolling ship then it might be OK otherwise this is not the ship for you. The ship constantly rolls with every wave ... Read More
The Ship itself: The Magellan is the noisiest, creakiest, most unstable ship that we have been on. If you don’t mind a rolling ship then it might be OK otherwise this is not the ship for you. The ship constantly rolls with every wave no matter how small. I set up an “inclinometer” to monitor it. From London to Amsterdam to Lisbon, the ship rolled from 0 to over 8 degrees to port. At one point during the night, it rolled so much (probably over 12 degrees) that all the bottles and glasses of water on the bedside cabinets and the dressing table slid off onto the floor. Loads of crockery smashed to the floor in Raffles Restaurant. Sleep was impossible. From Lisbon to Cape Verde, it was 0-4 degrees. At Cape Verde in port, the ship was moored on the starboard side but still leaned at 1 degree to port. Across the Atlantic to Brazil, it was from 3 degrees starboard to 3 degrees port. Even up the Amazon River, it rolled from +2 to -2 degrees. At one point, it is my opinion that the ship hit a sandbank because it violently listed at about 15 degrees to starboard. All the crockery in Raffles kitchen fell to the floor (again). When spoken to later, the Customer Services Manager denied hitting a sandbank but claimed that it was a tight bend in the channel instead!!! Engine noise was excessive and 24/7. The Tender boats are very old and do not appear to be in good condition. One has broken down. The lift on another broke and we had to remain overnight in port for the repair. All the tenders are very smokey and noisy. The Magellan leaks. After every shower of rain, there were pots placed in suitable positions in the Captain’s Bar, in the Sinatra’s bar and outside the Gym. On one occasion, the leak outside the Gym was so bad, it was literally pouring gallons of water onto the carpet but nobody was taking any notice. On another occasion, the strong smell of sewage outside the Gym was very noticeable. There may have been more leaks around the ship. Deck 4 seemed to have more problems that most. Several passengers had to change their cabins due to flooding problems. One couple changed room three times because sewage kept flooding up the shower plug hole and many passengers reported brown water coming from the basin taps (see Water below). The remainder of the ship shows its age. Rust is evident everywhere and the smell of diesel was common along the cabin areas as was the smell of sick from passengers who could not take the rolling. Cabins: The cabins are quite dated and furniture is showing signs of wear. The ceiling panels rattle; the wardrobe doors creak, other items squeak - no chance of a good night’s sleep. There is no control over the heating in the cabins. There is a built-in fan in the ceiling with a variable speed control but no thermostat. Many cabins have 2 bunk beds pinned to the wall. This ship is an adult only so it is doubtful if four adults used one cabin. They should be removed to leave more living space. There is one electricity socket per cabin and that is the two round-pinned european type. There was another socket of 115v and a corner light socket of unknown voltage that we used as a battery charger only. The Magellan website has absolutely no information about electric types and their usage. Irons and kettles not allowed although we ignored that for the first few days. We brewed our own tea but water was a problem as mentioned. Also milk is a problem - only long life milk is available which is not very good in tea. Milk did not keep in the cabin for more than a few hours before going off and there is no fridge in the cabin. Food: If you are a meat eater, then the food might be considered acceptable. For a calorie-conscious Vegetarian or Pescatarian, very disappointing. Food choice in the Raffles Restaurant (probably the most commonly used restaurant) was quite basic. All fish dishes are swimming in oil, butter or some form of cream sauce and all were overcooked. Cheese choice was very limited. Salads were limited mainly to a lot of cos or iceberg lettuce, cucumber and tomatoes. When there was a coleslaw, chopped leftover meat from the previous night was invariably always added to it - no good for vegetarians and I think it spoilt it for everyone. As the holiday progressed, it became worse. At Raffles Bistro (self service), we were constantly (at least half the duration) being served by an army of waiters (at least 25) for “Health & Safety” reasons. It was ridiculous. In the evening, our meals here became more and more restricted. Eventually, all salads were pre-prepared in bowls as were desserts - all very restricted. We could not help but get the impression that this was more for economy rather than health! Food at the Waldorf & Kensington Restaurants was better but restricted to the menu. Entertainment: The shows were pretty good on the whole. The dancers were well received and performed very well - could have done with more of their shows. The singers left quite a lot to be desired. There were two male singers who were very good, excellent even but the rest !!! Water: The water from the cabin basins was supposed to be fit for drinking. However, on our first night, some black greasy fluid came from the taps leaving a ring round the basin which had to be scrapped off. We never tried to use it as drinking water after that. The alternative was bottled water at £2.20 per 75cl bottle (£2.93/litre) which is quite expensive. Water in Lisbon was 1 Euro for 5.4 litres! There are drinking fountains around the ship but we are not supposed to fill water bottles due to “hygiene reasons” - we ignored this; we need clean water in the cabin. Later when we left Barbados, dark brown water issued from the basin taps and we bottled a sample for future analysis. Drinks: All spirits and fortified wines are measured out using a 40ml thimble measure (not legal in Britain). However, the bar staff never seemed to fill it to the 40ml mark. By obtaining a large measure of spirits from all the various outlets and filling a measured bottle, it was clear that the average was around 33ml, not 40ml, per measure. This might be considered OK if you have a drinks package at £17/day/per person (you simply have another drink) but beware if you are buying your drinks ad-hoc over the bar. Furthermore, lemonade, tonic, coke or ginger ale was only available by the can (£2.05) which makes a mixed drink quite expensive. Beer was simply Bitburger Lager and served in 440ml measure (with a lot of froth) at £3.30 - quite expensive. Other beers were bottled and chargeable even if a drinks package had been bought. When the drinks bill arrived (every 2 weeks), there was always a discrepancy or two but the Reception staff did not seem to be too bothered. As I had a drinks package and therefore would not be charged, they were reluctant to investigate drinks that should have gone on someone else’s bill. Gym: The gym is limited but useful. There is only one mat available for floor exercises despite requests for extra ones (this was met with “You should have brought your own”). A water fountain has recently been installed which is well used. We filled our water bottles from it without any objections. Itinerary: This could do with reviewing. Some stops could have done with being longer and some with being shorter. Manaus in the middle of Brazil was very hazardous to your health and not only from the Zika virus. During our enforced overnight stay, 9 passengers were mugged in the town despite the presence of Tourist Police. Additionally, it was reported that one female crew member was held up by a mugger but rescued by a male crew member who had to use force to fend off the attacker. Also another crew member who separated from his group was held up at gunpoint and robbed of everything down to his underpants. There were also warnings issued about Santana with regard to pickpockets & muggers. Gratuities: This was included in the fortnightly invoice but could be declined if done promptly. We were never sure who received these gratuities. Some staff were salaried, some salaried plus gratuities, some just paid a wage and some unpaid living off gratuities & tips. We do not believe in gratuities as we consider that the company should pay a fair, living wage to all its employees and passengers should be free to reward special service. CMV are very sensitive about this element. We were told by one member of staff that they would be instantly sacked at the next port if it was found that they had talked to passengers about gratuities. This was confirmed by other staff. It appears that gratuities are a way that CMV use to subsidise wages. Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
I sometime wonder if the reviewers had been on the same ship as myself because I found this cruise to be very enjoyable and took me to those places that I had wished to visit in the past and the programme of visits was perfect. The ship ... Read More
I sometime wonder if the reviewers had been on the same ship as myself because I found this cruise to be very enjoyable and took me to those places that I had wished to visit in the past and the programme of visits was perfect. The ship is old and well travelled but one passenger was overheard in saying that they had never travelled on such a clean ship. The crew were constantly cleaning and the use of hand sanitisers was required whenever you entered the restaurants. My cabin 6087 was the largest I had ever had and was kept spotlessly clean by Kway Min OO who is now having a well earned holiday in Myanmar. The Cabin was well appointed. Check-in was straightforward following an easy twenty minute walk from Tilbury Town Station and was ahead of schedule in spite of the ship arriving in Tilbury later than planned. I only cruise to see places that I wish to travel to so am not a hardened cruiser and this cruise took me one thousand miles up the Amazon to Manaus which is a fascinating city although as some passengers found to their cost, it has a violent undertone. The excursion that I took from Manaus, Amazonian Experience was excellent and I had no complaints on any of the excursions although I fully appreciate the annoyance of those who did the beach transfer on Bequia to a beach just fifteen minutes walk from the landing stage. The crew were excellent although I did have some reservations about the attitude of the waiters. The tender crews had some difficult work to do at times and they should be complimented for their work on Isle d' Salut where there was a heavy swell but they ensured that all passengers who wished to go ashore did so in as great a comfort as was possible. One reviewer has commented about the sudden violent vibration when we were travelling up the Amazon and has said that it must have been caused by the ship hitting a sandbank and dismissing the Cruise Director's comment that it was caused by a sudden change of course. I spoke to a retired Naval Officer just after this incident and he had said that the incident could well have been caused by a sudden change of course and it should be remembered that the ship was under the control of the Brazilian Pilots at that time. Overall, this was an excellent trip and as one reviewer has said too many passengers want Cunard standards at CMV prices. Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
We wanted some destinations neither of us had been to before and the Amazon was very inviting, plus price was reasonable for the length 6wks . Did not expect 5star cruising but nor did we expect so much water where it shouldn't be! ... Read More
We wanted some destinations neither of us had been to before and the Amazon was very inviting, plus price was reasonable for the length 6wks . Did not expect 5star cruising but nor did we expect so much water where it shouldn't be! The cabin was of ample size, beds very comfortable, shower great. Food was acceptable but in buffet not great. Like an old fashioned noisy school canteen! The waiters were attentive and cabin staff excellent. The trips ashore, with one exception were good, although the queuing for tenders was hideous despite trips being called at diff times. The tenders were grubby and old with broken windows, and on some trips the return tenders were reduced to one. The ship is tired and tatty but very clean.Most of our trip only 2 out of 4 lifts worked and often one was being used by staff to transport bed linen etc. Luckily stairs are easy for us but not so for a lot of less able people on board. Entertainment was ok, also had a couple of good lecturers giving talks on destinations etc. Problems, well water is a BIG one. Constant leaks in the lounge from ceiling, often light fittings! meant checking your chair wasn't damp, minding the blue towels that lay on entrance to the bar for most of trip, soaking up big leak, also outside the gym.Apparently swimming pool leaked---- Lots of ill people confined to cabins... about 3wks into trip the usual clanging and shaking in cabin of loose wall panels changed to horrendous knocking and thudding on our walls.After 3 nights no sleep told reception who said ship sailing to full capacity and offered earplugs! I declined as already tried my own to no avail. after numerous attempts got a member of staff to come and listenin our cabin. They accepted it was awful and gave us new cabin. We had to move ourselves as by 10pm promised help not arrived. Problem-trip 1st thing next morning, no safe, light not working, still same next day so had to use 2 cabins 1 for safe 1 to sleep. Back from trip, required 3 more tel calls to get sorted. 3days later, returned from breakfast to open bathroom door and be greeted by a flood of water and waste matter coming up drain.Staff said they would get a plumber to fix it. The smell was awful. They put a cabin lad outside our door as it had to be kept open for access. I checked at frequent intervals and noticed some other empty cabins with same problem. By late afternoon the waste matter had spilled onto our carpet and they had industrial dryers in, still insisting we could go back later! at 8pm they admitted defeat and gave us another cabin 1 deck up. Great, yet another evening ruined, we also missed our slot for dinner as we had no where to get washed and dressed in so had to make do with leftovers at buffet. The promised assistance to move arrived at 11pm one lady who we ended up helping as only one lift was working so we carried half our belongings up stairs. Surprise, broken air con and safe totally missing lock! We were not alone as we spoke with numerous couples who'd had to move. I approached reception next day re speaking to Julie-cust services, but just received letter through cabin door saying aware of situation and to contact company on return. Since then numerous letters have been written, company not interested, just offered 15% off my NEXT cruise with them this year! I declined and wrote to ABTA.It went to pre arbitration but they won't respond with any better offer.I would need to pay for full arbitration. I am disgusted with their customer service attitude and can only say don't cruise with them.Heaven help anyone going on the 'maiden world cruise with them. The Amazon destination and other ports of call were great but the ship is tired and needs scrapping, not refurbishing. Lots of people on here feel likewise. Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
We have just returned from a six week cruise on the m/v 'Magellan' operated by CMV. The itinerary was sailing Tilbury on the 5th January 2016 to the Amazon and the Caribbean. On the way we also called at Amsterdam, Lisbon, ... Read More
We have just returned from a six week cruise on the m/v 'Magellan' operated by CMV. The itinerary was sailing Tilbury on the 5th January 2016 to the Amazon and the Caribbean. On the way we also called at Amsterdam, Lisbon, Funchal (Madeira) and Mindalo (Cape Verde). After crossing the Atlantic we entered the Amazon River and spent a week with a port call every day upto Manaus and back. On the way to the Caribbean we called at Isla da Salut (Devils Island) and after four port calls in the Windward Islands we called at Horta and Ponta Delgado in the Azores before returning to Tilbury. The highlights for us was undoubtably the Amazon and Devils Island, particularly the latter. Prior to booking we read all the reviews regarding the Magellan and CMV and it is fair to say that as a result we had serious doubts about booking. However, we decided that the itinerary was so appealing, and the price so reasonable, that we would proceed but with low expectations on the ship and cruise line. We were wise to do so. First the good points. The cabin, which we chose with great care taking into account online reviews and personal experiance on cruising generally, was excellent. It was roomy and the cupboard space easily accommodated our 5 suitcase load. It was also very quiet which could not be said for many others. She is an old ship and some others experienced creaking and groaning in the the fabric of the ship when she was working in even a reasonable sea which kept them awake at night. To the extent that some with outside cabins were given inside cabins for sleeping in, retaining their original outside cabin for day use. The only down side was that as we were on deck 4 (4036) and only about 3/4 meters above the waterline in rough weather they bolt shutter over the inside of the Windows as protection. This happened for one day on our journey outward and for two on the return leg across the Bay of Biscay. They give you no warning. They just do it. But it is for your safety so no arguments here on it. The ship was built in 1985 when there was not so much pressure to cram as many people onboard as possible so we found her public spaces well laid out and more than adequate. Even when no one was on deck due to cold/bad weather you could still always find a spot to settle yourselves down in one of the lounges. Almost without exception we found the waiters and bar staff were superb and we cannot praise them high enough. They made up for many of the deficiencies. I have no doubt she is perfectly safe and seaworthy but the ship is old and it shows cosmetically, serious TLC needed. Maintenance staff are everywhere, always either repairing or running maintenance checks. Sometimes these seemed planned to create the maximum amount of inconvenience to the passengers. A bit of forethought would have gone a long way. There are eight lift shafts but two of them never worked the whole time we were onboard. When you consider the age profile that CMV targets, many of which have varying degrees of mobility problems, it is frankly not acceptable. About two weeks into the cruise there appeared a wet area just outside Sinatra's Bar with just towels put down to soak it up and a yellow warning sign. We were told it was the air conditioning. After a further two weeks we were all just walking past it without noticing it anymore. When we got to colder climate it stopped. No attempt was made that we saw to remedy the fact that the air conditioning unit was dumping excess moisture out of the air onto the floor In a steady drip. Most of the lounge furniture has seen better days and needs either replacing or reupholstering. They have replaced most of the sun loungers on deck but some of the old ones are still used but are dilapidated and should be pensioned off. Again there is plenty of space on deck although shade is at a premium. The excursion team, with one notable exception, seemed a bit disorganised and some, not all, of the trips were badly conducted. All cruise lines grossly overcharge for shore excursions but some of them on this ship bordered on daylight robbery. One in particular at Bequia was a cataraman trip to a secluded beach and back. Cost £24 each. We were tendered ashore and had to wait about 45 minutes for the cataraman which took ages to board as we all had to wade out to it. It then just sailed round the headland and dumped us on a beach about ten minutes later, which was just a 15 minute walk from where we boarded the boat, we know because we walked back. Everyone was livid. The food is adequate, nothing exceptional. Occasionally they put on a very late buffet where the food is excellent. Unfortunately most times many of the early diners had already gone to bed and the late diners haven't long finished their main meal so a lot gets wasted.they should forget the buffet and concentrate on providing better meals in the dining rooms. Bar prices are exceptionally reasonable for a cruise ship with none of the compulsory 15% surcharge you get added by most other lines. Smoking areas are not clearly defined or sign posted. Ther are three areas on the port side on deck 10 and 11, more space than we have seen allocated to smokers on any other cruise line, where smoking is permitted. It is not enforced and by the end of the cruise smokers had virtually claimed the whole of the port side of the ship including the boat decks. In the Eros Bar on deck ten even the ships officers were smoking in an area that was just marginally over the centre line into the port side.think it is a case that as the Management smoke they have no interest in policing the policy. The entertainment staff were very enthusiastic and friendly of mixed talent, some very good and others not so, but they really threw themselves into everything they did.we only had three guest acts flown in which for a six week cruise is appalling. The usual activities that you would expect, lectures, quizzes etc which you can take or leave as you please. Despite the above we have no regrets. This gave an opportunity to visit places, at an affordable price, which we thought we would never get to see and, despite the niggles,it was a fantastic and memorable holiday which we will long remember. The itinerary was everything. You just have to remember that this is not Princess Line or Celebrity and that you are paying a price accordingly. Would we sail on 'Magellan' again? Definitely not, although it might be interesting to see what they do to the old girl during her docking next October. There was a very mixed response from fellow passengers. Some saying they would never sail on her again to others that were enthusiastically booking future cruise whilst onboard, at least one couple we met who actually booked the 120 day round the world cruise from Tilbury leaving on the 5th January 2017. Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
We booked Back to Back cruises on the Magellan, for a grand total of 56 nights and only got home yesterday the 16 of February 2016. The Christmas and New Year cruise was without doubt our worst ever , and although the ship can't ... Read More
We booked Back to Back cruises on the Magellan, for a grand total of 56 nights and only got home yesterday the 16 of February 2016. The Christmas and New Year cruise was without doubt our worst ever , and although the ship can't be held responsible for the weather, there were just so many things wrong. Once we did get away many hours later than scheduled, and informed that the ports of call had changed , which then meant that we would be in Gibraltar one day late and we had planned to meet someone there , they failed to turn up on the 27th and that cause a few problems, the crossing both away and returning home was awful, and it appears that the ship struggles with rough seas. The result was people falling out of chairs, lifts being turned off and glasses falling out of the cabinet behind the bars and leaks coming through the roof of the Captain's lounge. The cabins are fine, but there is not enough seating for all when in the buffet or the lounges and most of the time only half of the lifts were operational. The meals were not that good and the dinners at Raffles the buffet were limited on selection. The entertainment was provided by the regular staff and only one external artist was shown in the whole of the two weeks....very poor as I was song and danced out after about 10 days.The entertainment team, done what they could, but their employer needs to take a good look at itself ! The result was that apart from the magnificent New Years eve overlooking Madeira and the fireworks display, the whole cruise was sub standard and then we had the 42 night cruse to the Amazon and West Indies to look forward to ! To be fair the second cruise was better and although we both went ill on the way back, and so many people ended up in the infirmary with coughs and breathing problems, it still was a case that the Christmas cruise was so poor and I would not go on the Magellan again, for anything over 14 nights as it did not match up to others that we had both been on.Even then it would have to be an offer that we could not refuse. Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
Late embarkation due to non arrival of food- was said. 2 cancelled stops, Corunna and Gibraltar as missed tide at Bristol, Lisbon stop en route to Canaries, NOT as advertised on way back. Madeira berthed at 9.30 am, ashore by tender for ... Read More
Late embarkation due to non arrival of food- was said. 2 cancelled stops, Corunna and Gibraltar as missed tide at Bristol, Lisbon stop en route to Canaries, NOT as advertised on way back. Madeira berthed at 9.30 am, ashore by tender for 2.15 just as all shut for New Year, this after 1 lifeboat fibreglass hull damaged, on another two windows smashed, even cooks helping to embark and disembark clients to tenders, why only 2 tenders in use? Chaos. Vigo [an extra stop en route back]- arrive by 6pm but gangway down for 8pm! Disembarkation at S/Hampton having left car at Avonmouth cruise terminal! [This bus transfer the most organised part of the whole trip]The weather was bad, gale force times but partner ship made it to Gib. is said. Rumors abound. Little time in ports, pathetic. Bar one meal ALL food tepid although very well presented and complaints made but no change. All crew excellent including the dancers and singers but the total lack of information as to why programme changed not good. Many rumours abound! The lifts very inadequate, lacking in Christmas decor and only 2 'dress' evenings. We had requested a dining table for 6, but got 8 and squashed against another table. The ship very clean but seating areas inadequate. Would never use this company again. Very second rate. Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
Our first and last voyage on Magellan! We booked this cruise to enjoy Xmas at sea,how wrong we were, 6 hour delay at Tilbury then into bad weather not there problem. For the first nine days the food in the resteraunt was terrible, soup ... Read More
Our first and last voyage on Magellan! We booked this cruise to enjoy Xmas at sea,how wrong we were, 6 hour delay at Tilbury then into bad weather not there problem. For the first nine days the food in the resteraunt was terrible, soup was cold as were the main courses, one lunch time we were served raw fish, Christmas dinner was a farce,no roast potatoes no pigs in blankets,Christmas pudding was a chocolate brownie, mince pies were unrecognisable! We think that the Chief was replaced and the food quality improved New Years Eve meal was perfect and continued for the rest of the cruise. Our cabin was very good, large, clean with a good sized bathroom. There are not enough seats for the number of passengers, half of the lifts were out of use most of the voyage, not enough toilets, shows in the theatre were amateurish. Unless things improve don't bother with Megellan Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
We have cruised with CMV before so know, more or less, what to expect although this was our first time on Magellan. December 22 started with an early morning telephone call to advise the ship had encountered bad weather and would be ... Read More
We have cruised with CMV before so know, more or less, what to expect although this was our first time on Magellan. December 22 started with an early morning telephone call to advise the ship had encountered bad weather and would be late in at Tilbury so our embarkation time was put back 5 hours (to 6.30pm). This was re-iterated in an email also received that morning and this advised that the ship would now be sailing at 8pm. We duly turned up, as requested, just before 6.30pm and were virtually alone in the ‘unloading’ area with our luggage being taken from us almost immediately. We went to check in, our Cruise Cards were already waiting for us at a separate table (together with about 20 others) and we were next in line to actually check in. The latter was quickly accomplished and we proceeded to ‘Security’, they obviously wanted us on board promptly as nothing we were carrying was put through the scanner. Nor were we invited to go through the body scanner. Just how much time did they think they were saving by these unwise actions? Once on board, we were shown to our cabin (I knew better than the lady taking us there where it was) and the cabin keys were not inside as she expected them to be. She went to Reception to get them for us. Luggage arrived quickly and we were all unpacked and sorted by about 7.15pm by which time we were under way en route to Antwerp! (Which, incidentally, we enjoyed but it was at the expense of Lanzarote (not Tenerife as quoted by another critic). Later, and somewhat disturbingly, we discovered that mandatory SOLAS lifeboat drill had been undertaken prior to our arrival on board. Seeing as they knew not all passengers were on board, just what were they thinking? There were issues on board; most mentioned by prior reviews (some of which appear tainted with a degree of hysteria) briefly my views on some of the issues: 2 out of 4 lifts in the forward area not working for the entire cruise. Given the mobility issues of a significant proportion of passengers, this was a real problem as people would get in a lift irrespective of which direction it was travelling. I dread to think just how long a wheelchair bound passenger had to wait until a lift with sufficient space came along. Cleaning appeared to be going on constantly around the ship and the public areas, including eating zones appeared in generally good order albeit a little tired in places. Initially, food wasn’t brilliant (but not ‘awful’ as some state) and the soup could, generally, have been hotter. As already stated, it did improve considerably in the latter part of the cruise and the New Year’s Dinner was a fine example of what should have been the norm. If the Chef did change, then it was for the better. The previous incumbent’s interpretation of some classic dishes left much to be desired on occasion. We found the staff to have a reasonable command of English and we had no difficulty making our requirements known. Our restaurant team were very good, unlike others; we do not require waiting staff to explain a menu to us! Agree, the entertainment, especially the evening shows, was mainly amateurish and there were technical problems for some of the lectures. Daytime entertainment was very much of participate if you like it or do your own thing. Passengers themselves caused some problems by not waiting until called and congesting some areas unnecessarily although lift problems may have been a contributing factor. An evening ‘chocolate buffet’ was spoiled by greedy (they hadn’t long had their evening meal) people pushing and shoving to partake – some with plates already chocolate smeared trying to get ahead of those still waiting for their first taste! Also, a ‘Magnifique Buffet’ in the Bistro was marred by greedy people who could not contain themselves. We advised that photographs could be taken from 11pm and the buffet would commence at 11.15 so, we turned up in that interval only to find the display had been ruined. We were later informed that some very selfish people had started on the food at about 10.50pm! Due to rough seas, our cabin window (we were on Deck 4) was boarded up for two days each way and we viewed this as a wise safety precaution and had no problem with it. Our cabin was spacious for a standard type and the shower was excellent however, a little more storage space for toiletries would have been appreciated. It was one sudden roll that caused injuries to several passengers which led to the helicopter evacuation for the most seriously injured. We could hear the rotor blades from our position in the restaurant and estimate it took about 10 minutes at most to achieve – some people are prone to exaggeration. Shore excursions, we went on three, were fine and reasonably good value for money spoiled only by some peoples inability to get back to the coach by the requested time. Tendering at Funchal had its moments (as stated by other reviewers) plus we had the additional entertainment of two chaps almost coming to blows attempting to get back on board! We appreciate that Captains are under pressure to get back in time for next cruise (we spoke to a passenger on Fred Olsen’s Balmoral in Gran Canaria, they had lost 3 ports of call and would only be ‘standing off’ at Funchal to watch the fireworks. Their Captain was allowing for bad weather on the way back to Southampton as, if he was late, they would not get a berth) although Tilbury doesn’t suffer from multiple cruise lines using it! What does the skipper do? Stay in harbour and miss even more ports of call or ‘rough it’ (quite an appropriate expression) and deliver what a lot of passengers expect. It is a no win situation. The Bay of Biscay is notorious and, in Winter, especially so. We did not expect a smooth passage. There are lessons to be learned by CMV from this cruise but, overall, we enjoyed it helped enormously by our table companions in the evenings. Unfortunately, the problems didn’t finish with the end of the cruise. I preloaded my on board account and they managed to mis-apply the funds with the result that my bank account has been debited with twice as much as expected. After much discussion, I am advised a refund is in course! Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
What a disappointment, first port of call should have been Gibraltar, it was Antwerp. The reason for this change wasn't believed by anyone and as a result, we didn't go to Lanzarote. The food in the Waldorf was mainly inedible, ... Read More
What a disappointment, first port of call should have been Gibraltar, it was Antwerp. The reason for this change wasn't believed by anyone and as a result, we didn't go to Lanzarote. The food in the Waldorf was mainly inedible, the Head Chef clearly couldn't cook even basic food. He tried to be too clever and innovative, but failed miserably. The lack of sufficient seating in most public areas, including Raffles was problematical. The ship appeared to little or no stabilisation compared to other ships I have sailed in previously. Wouldn't ever consider another cruise with Cruise and Maritime, I am going back to P and O (a professional Company). Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
I don't think I have to say much about this xmas/new year cruise, most has been said from previous reviews. It was a total disappointment, all comments previously written are 100% accurate, our cabin steward ( Sanjay ) seemed to be ... Read More
I don't think I have to say much about this xmas/new year cruise, most has been said from previous reviews. It was a total disappointment, all comments previously written are 100% accurate, our cabin steward ( Sanjay ) seemed to be the only person who knew what is job was, and the the staff who took our orders for drinks, they did a fine job. We saw the captain maybe 4 times in the 2 weeks, just his report on the pa system, if you could hear him that is. The other item no one has pointed out was the disembarkation at Tilbury, many took the offer of the express move to get off early, this was a total joke, we stood for 1.5 hours waiting to disembark, only to be told that we had to turn round to disembark the other side, then turned again, then again, surely a ship can only dock one way, of course tempers started to raise, when we were told to move round again to another place of disembarking by a member of staff, what did she expect. Eventually we left the ship at 3.10 pm instead of 1.30pm, that was after waiting around at different points on the ship from 10.00am, the time we had to vacate our cabins. So over 5 hrs to vacate the ship. It was a disgrace to be treated like this. I could say more about the entertainment, food, cleanliness, the drinks rip off which hardly anyone took up, the £5.00 per night per person tips, I, like most were at reception on the 4th January getting it reimbursed from our card bills. At least I gave a good tip to our cabin steward, he deserved it. I will no doubt be going back to Thomson for future cruises. Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
I have read and fully endorse what my fellow sufferers said about the Magellan.It was an unforgettable disaster, We are seasoned cruisers (450 nights on various cruise ships) but never experienced a ship like this .We had to search the ... Read More
I have read and fully endorse what my fellow sufferers said about the Magellan.It was an unforgettable disaster, We are seasoned cruisers (450 nights on various cruise ships) but never experienced a ship like this .We had to search the Bistro area for clean cups and glasses for the fruit juice. Hot plates for salad ,cold plates for the hot meals. Cabin management was not up to standard, we had to request towels, facecloths,shampoo etc to be replaced, window sill was continuously wet and dirty which we had to wipe daily. No security to board whatsoever, just swipe the card, no check on coming on board, we had two ports which did the search on land. The food was as bad as everyone stated lukewarm and sometimes not recognisable and very small portions, which was a general complaint for discussions. Several people opted to disembark at early ports rather than stay on the ship. I again fully endorse previous statements by other travellers. Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
Embarkation because of cabin number was fast and easy, there were three adults in cabin, which was roomy and comfortable. Things started going downhill fast. Sailing was delayed till next morning, plenty of rumours why bad weather was main ... Read More
Embarkation because of cabin number was fast and easy, there were three adults in cabin, which was roomy and comfortable. Things started going downhill fast. Sailing was delayed till next morning, plenty of rumours why bad weather was main reason. Two ports of call cancelled (La Corunna and worst of all Gibraltar) ship docked in Lisbon instead. The Canary Islands were fabulous as always, Madeira was excellent but had to go ashore by tender, the standard of seamanship was appalling, farcical really and not fit to crew passenger liners. Our cabin steward (Denis) was fabulous, but rest of crew were sulky, unsmiling, rude and completely unprofessional. Don't bother with drinks package unless you are an alcoholic lol. We think the wine waitress in the restaurant thought she was paying for it herself and was really mean with the servings. The bar ran out of Bailleys, gin and lemonade so quite a lot of cocktails could not be made. Food left a lot to be desired and only Luke warm. How can anybody make jelly with absolutely NO flavour (Marco Polo chefs). TheMarco Polo was a sturdy ship, we hit some really rough weather. Public areas always full, not enough seats anywhere. Too many people on board. Will never sail with Cruise and Maritime again. Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
This was our first cruise with Cruise & Maritime and we were a little apprehensive given the low price we paid. The Magellan was lacking in the little niceties, e.g. quality toiletries, bath robes, nuts with drinks etc. however it had ... Read More
This was our first cruise with Cruise & Maritime and we were a little apprehensive given the low price we paid. The Magellan was lacking in the little niceties, e.g. quality toiletries, bath robes, nuts with drinks etc. however it had all the basics needed. Checking in was speedy and efficient, we were escorted to our cabin within 30 minutes of arrival and our luggage was waiting for us there. However, as we were escorted round the side of the hand luggage x-ray machine and didn't go through the body scanner at Tilbury we could have been taking anything on board. Despite having asked for a double bed the cabin was set up as a twin. However, this was quickly rectified. The cabin size was compatible to other cruises we have been on but lacked a fridge and a decent size and quality TV. Not that it mattered much as we could not get any TV channels at all once south of the Azores. The shower was larger than many cruise ships and had plenty of hot water at a good pressure. Room service, for a limited breakfast menu, was delivered on time and free. Evening entertainment was not the quality or variety you get on larger ships but then we were not expecting West End show standards. However, what the entertainers lacked in talent they made up for in their tremendous enthusiasm. However, when the premier entertainment for one evening was, what looked like a pirated DVD of a 30 year old rock concert, we were not impressed. The staff were all very friendly and helpful, customer service was first class and didn't deserve the rudeness they received from some of the passengers whose manners left a lot to be desired. The food is as good in terms of quality and variety as any cruise ship we have been on, with evening meals comprising two or three appetisers, two soups, three salads and four main courses to choose from, followed by a choice of three sweets, cheese and coffee or tea. Everything from Sushi, Curry, Pasta and Steaks were on the menu, and there was always a vegetarian alternative. Although the meals did get boring after the third week. The only disappointment was the lack of a speciality restaurant but l guess that's just down to the size of the ship. We also prefer open dining at a time that suits us rather than the fixed early or late sittings in the restaurants. However, there is always the self service restaurant as an alternative. One real concern was the lack of hygiene in some restaurant areas. There were no staff offering hand disinfectant at the poolside Grill where I saw one woman put her hands into the tray of chips and scoop up a handful of chips from the tray onto her plate potentially contaminating the whole tray of chips. Thankfully the staff promptly disposed of the rest of the tray of chips in the bin. That says more about the passenger than the staff, but should have been prevented. The staff worked extremely hard to put on a Beach Party on Mayreau Island taking all the food and equipment ashore from the ship. This was was a great success and fully appreciated. My wife and I suffered sore throats, coughs and cold symptoms during the voyage, as did many people we spoke to, which we put down to the air conditioning. Conclusion:- The Magellan is to cruising what Lidl is to supermarkets. Good value for a limited product. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
Ship is lovely, but no laundry,cinema or tea/coffee facility in cabins - essential on long cruises, but not according to CMV. Staff are generally lacking in enthusiasm and all crew struggle with English. Restaurant staff and cabin ... Read More
Ship is lovely, but no laundry,cinema or tea/coffee facility in cabins - essential on long cruises, but not according to CMV. Staff are generally lacking in enthusiasm and all crew struggle with English. Restaurant staff and cabin staff are very good. Food is very average - poor quality ingredients and meat was always overcooked, but well presented. Drinks are expensive - beware mixed drinks, ie vodka and tonic, using cheap and nasty spirits. A bottle of house red at dinner will set you back £15 for a wine that could probably be picked up in a supermarket for a fiver. Daytime activities are woeful and evening entertainment poor. Internet is expensive (£35 for 10 hours) and connection was very difficult, if not impossible. Gratuities are, in reality, a service charge and automatically debited to passengers' accounts. Many crew do not benefit from this system, despite what CMV claim. Good points? - Gym, steam and sauna suite ( without drinking water) and the young people that clean and disinfect the staircase handrails - always working, always cheerful and always polite. Will we cruise with CMV again? No. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
We have just returned from our 1st cruise on Magellan. We had a wonderful time. We have cruised many times with PO and Thompsons . But have to say that this was a wonderful cruise. Ship was kept very clean. Food was very good plenty of ... Read More
We have just returned from our 1st cruise on Magellan. We had a wonderful time. We have cruised many times with PO and Thompsons . But have to say that this was a wonderful cruise. Ship was kept very clean. Food was very good plenty of variety. Entertainment was good and always plenty of variety on sea days the team work very hard. . We also were rather apprehensive after reading reviews. But so pleased we decided to judge for ourself. Our cabin was inside (kept clean) our cabin steward was very friendly and always ready to please nothing to much trouble. Excursion only used beach transfers even given refund when it was bad weather. Embarkation and Disembarkation very easy left a suitcase was informed at once so able to get back quickly. will not hesitate to book again. already looking for next year. Read Less
Sail Date October 2015
This was our second cruise on Magellan this year. It is an older type ship as the brochure states and is not "the all singing and dancing" type of vessel but a comfortable, clean and friendly way to cruise. Despite people ... Read More
This was our second cruise on Magellan this year. It is an older type ship as the brochure states and is not "the all singing and dancing" type of vessel but a comfortable, clean and friendly way to cruise. Despite people complaining about queueing to embark and disembark we knew that over 1000 people could not all arrive and leave the ship at the same time. We made our way to the long stay car park, our luggage was taken from the boot of our car and was waiting for us outside our cabin. Food was plentiful and very good. Our cabin 5145 was ample size and kept clean by our very efficient steward. There is something going on all day if you wish to fill your day, may not be to everyone's taste to do quizzes,bingo, deck games, bridge or craft classes. My husband did find that when we had 2 full days at sea he became a bit bored and would have liked something different to do, a view I heard from a few wives I spoke to. There are some people who complain about everything, why don't they read the brochure properly and they would get a good idea what to expect. If you pay for a cabin on the lowest deck you are quite likely to get some degree of engine vibration noise, it's a ship!!! We did 4 of the excursions on offer and thoroughly enjoyed each one. It's enough to give a taste of each place and they were well organised. We were a bit disappointed that the comedian and guest speaker were the same as on the April cruise we did and their material was the same all over again. As Magellan has quite a high number of returning guests this is not a good idea. We unfortunately had to use the ship infirmary when my husband was taken ill. The staff were so kind and helpful, informing us of everything and reassuring us. The Guest Manager Julie was so helpful and arranged all sorts of services for us. All staff were pleasant and helpful. Read Less
Sail Date October 2015
Cruise reviews need to be objective to be of value - my wife and I choose Magellan because it was an adult only, smaller ship and had an itinerary to the Canary Islands for winter sunshine. We have experience of the luxury end of the ... Read More
Cruise reviews need to be objective to be of value - my wife and I choose Magellan because it was an adult only, smaller ship and had an itinerary to the Canary Islands for winter sunshine. We have experience of the luxury end of the market of Seaborn and Crystal and also Cunard, P&O and cheap and cheerful cruises on Carnival in the US. All have been enjoyed give or take. We are independent travellers in our 70s and the average age may well have been 80 years, but it is not an ideal ship , because of the architecture for people with mobility problems . The passengers appeared to be about a third who stayed on the boat continually as a floating hotel - ‘just another cruise’ - and a third who went on all the organised trips , and a similar number of independent travellers, who by and large, were last in the pile, and pretty much neglected. We paid £2200 for an outside cabin, including gratuity, but excluding drinks. Cruises on the same dates and itinerary with P&O and a luxury 5* ship would have cost an extra £800 and £2000 respectively and asks the question of the cost relative to the quality of the holiday. Magellan was spotless with an exemplary standard of hygiene and a very modern décor. Our room was an adequate size and contrary to what we’ve read, there was more than enough wardrobe space with an abundance of hangers. The bathroom was comparatively large with a hugely efficient shower, but the room was let down by only having a stool and not a small chair, so you had to lie on the bed to watch the TV. You need a round pin US adapter and can buy one from the shop for £5. There is no room service, but you can take food and drink from the lido restaurant if necessary. Food wise is interesting. For example, there is very little difference between all the classes of ships for breakfast in that Magellan has omelette chefs on hand plus the usual breakfast selections, including superb porridge. Equally so at lunchtime when there was chefs on hand to cook an individual specialised meal or individual pizzas. Only the main course for dinner reflects the price you pay for the cruise, but equally all other aspects of the dinner are good quality and you do not feel short-changed. There were two formal dinner nights when the food was excellent. Plus, you could have cakes and sandwiches for tea which all in all, was satisfactory. Entertainment was a bit of a curate’s egg - classical wise, there was a very enjoyable violinist and pianist, and all the musical groups in various places were pretty much on a par with other ships. The theatre needs to be seen to be believed, as the architect must have had a brainstorm - wherever you are in the theatre, you cannot find an unobstructed view. Most of the shows were in tune with the age of the passengers with relatively unsophisticated but equally enjoyable elderly performers. The main show with the singers and dancers were pretty good considering, but they definitely need much slicker choreography and production to maximise their talents. Some shows, appeared very amateurish at times. One positive bonus was that you could always get a seat in contrast to other cruises. Service wise was excellent as our room was kept spotless and we had very efficient dining room service - both were Burmese. The staff in the bars and restaurants were beautifully groomed and were always smiling and helpful. Drink package was £34 a day for my wife and I, is a great money earner for the company - I definitely do not recommend . Much better to self choose as the drinks are relatively cheap, ranging from £3.10 for a very nice cocktail of the day or a pint of beer to a maximum of £4.50 for a gin and tonic. Plus there is no service charge. The drinks package has a choice only one German draft beer, which is not to UK drinkers palette , and extra £4.50 has to be paid for UK branded canned beer - the wine to the meal is a cheap Spanish plonk, which is undrinkable after a few days. To get your money’s worth, you would have to drink 10 drinks a day - however as your packet effectively starts at dinner on the first day and you spend quite a number of whole days off the boat, in effect, you would have to drink at least 15 drinks a day to make the package worthwhile. We donated almost £200 to the company in drinks credit not utilised. Would I recommend Magellan -at the discounted prices it is an absolute bargain and testimony to this, there was a loyal band of regular cruisers on board. Of choice, my wife and I would like to go a little upmarket for more personal and room service, but cruising is now becoming a compromise , as these services are available on ships of 2-3000 or more passengers and the hassle factor is now a major consideration for us , which was significantly reduced on the Magellan. I would definitely not recommend this Canary Island cruise as the itinerary was unbelievable and unacceptable. Over a 15 day holiday, we had 6 sea days in winter weather and on return you could not even walk on the deck. There was 7 port stops with 4 half days restricted visits as the ship departed at 14:00 hours so in reality; one had only three hours in places such as Las Palmas and Lisbon. We only had three full days. This is obviously to save money and no other cruise line to the Canary Islands , allowed so little time to visit as they all leave at 18:00 hours, allowing a full day to explore. Contrast this with Fred Olsen, which was travelling at the same time and had an infinitely better itinerary . Tilbury is a dump and there is no other explanation for this as it needs a major overhaul and I read the other critiques with incredulity as embarkation was a nightmare as it took almost 4 hours for everyone to disembark. The reason was clear as it was phased to prevent gridlock - the small entry road was a bottleneck for traffic as I had booked a taxi for 11 AM, allowing three hours, which I thought was more than adequate but mistaken. Sitting around for three hours waiting to get off is no joke. Plus, there were no porters or trolleys. What a farrago. Small point, but the customer service should visit Cunard to see what customer relations should be like and cost nothing to be polite and pleasant. In mitigation, I have to say a lot of cruisers are real moaners. Read Less
Sail Date October 2015

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