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6 Cunard Queen Victoria Cruise Reviews for Family Cruises to Europe - British Isles & Western from Southampton

First experience on a Queen. Embarkation was easy The buffet was fabulous and varied The shows were wonderful The cabin was spacious and comfortable. Loved having a kettle with tea and coffee available. Wonderful pillows The ... Read More
First experience on a Queen. Embarkation was easy The buffet was fabulous and varied The shows were wonderful The cabin was spacious and comfortable. Loved having a kettle with tea and coffee available. Wonderful pillows The alcohol was too expensive and prices were not properly listed. $27 for 2 glasses of wine and $10 for Scotch Getting off in Guernsey was horrific. Only 2 tender boats, long wait for tickets. Almost impossible for people with disabilities. The lineup at the restaurant was often terrible, we retreated to the buffet After many people bought masks for the Masked Ball there was no entertainment staff to lead the party and not enough seating so the evening was flat. I guess they had a parade but we gave up after half an hour of standing around. General opinion was too many people for the space and number of staff. We would return knowing the downsides still a lovely cruise. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
First, as always, was the embarkment procedure. It is usually a smooth experience (this is my third trip on the Queen Victoria), however, on this occasion, not everything was plain sailing. Unfortunately, there was a technical error, and ... Read More
First, as always, was the embarkment procedure. It is usually a smooth experience (this is my third trip on the Queen Victoria), however, on this occasion, not everything was plain sailing. Unfortunately, there was a technical error, and this subsequently caused a delay. Neverthless, once we made it on board, we found our luggage to be waiting for us, inside the immaculate cabin. From our room, we went straight to the Lido, and it was extremely busy, but the food was still kept at a good standard (unlike the burger-bar). As a vegetarian, I was always looking out for my options, and I was pleased by the array of nice salads. However, there was few veggie hot options, all except the tasteless bean casserole... which was recycled day-in and day-out. The Lido breakfast also fine, for there was a clear variety of well-prepared dishes. Despite this praise, the coffee served was really unpleasant. Likewise, I was pleased with the Britannia (evening) dining experience, since the service was excellent and the menu choices were great. The evening entertainment was not as strong, as compared to past performances. The Cunard Dancers do not seem to be the team, at least not those I have seen in the past. Similarly, many of the new acts were not to our taste, but we very much enjoyed the fantastic violinist and the clever comedian. Nonetheless, the best thing of all was a total surprise! On our voyage were we joined by Kathleen Turner. We attended her Q&A, and found her be extremely entertaining. Later in the cruise, we were honoured to be able to see her new show, ‘Finding My Voice’, which was a joy to watch. During the evening, we loved the gin bar. My partner had plenty of delicious cocktails to choose from, and the knowledgable bar-man was able to give some superb advice. I am not a gin-drinker myself, but I very much enjoyed the fizzy from New Zealand (Cloudy Bay). The alternatives venues were also fine: The Golden Lion with its fun quizzes, and the Commadore club with its soft jazz and cosy atmosphere. The improvements on the Queen Victoria, were really quite amazing, especially the back pool area. There is now ample comfortable seating around, and the Wintergarden peaceful environment is lovely, unless the football was on! Our first port was Rochelle, France. It had some interesting historic buildings, and a marina, but it was still setting up for the tourist season. On the whole, it is a nice little place, but it is not a particularly impressive destination. Our second port was Bilbao, Spain. It is a lovely place, but it absolutely hammered down with rain, so we opted for a indoors option: The Guggenheim Museum. We didn’t really understand the modern-art on display, so it receives a mixed review from us. Our third port was Gijión, Spain. From our previous experience this isn’t our favourite port in the world, so we arranged a trip with Cunard: Enchanting Oviedo. Although the tour guide was excellent, it was not what we were expecting. First, we visited a 9th century church. It had amazing views from the top, but note that the walk-up is steep. Second, we visited a Cathedral, where we were lectured on the story of Jesus, for over two hours! For a religious family this could serve as very interesting, but for a non-religious family this could end up being quite tiresome (we belonged to the latter group). The next place on the tour was a quaint pub. Although we did not venture indoors, we sat outside in the beautiful courtyard, where we tried some extraordinary tapas and cider. In all, the tour took 4.5 hours. The downside was that we expected to see more of Oviedo, rather than the interior of the Cathedral. On a side-note, there was an incident/traffic collision with the bus, but the tour-guide was excellent in sorting this problem out quickly. The port of call was Guernsey. To our surprise, this was our favourite port of all. We wondered up to Candie Gardens, which were divinely scenic. Whilst there we stopped for a wonderful cup of coffee, at the Café Victoria. From this point, you can spot an interesting tower, which is not too far away. It turned out to be the Victoria Tower, which was built in 1846, to commemorate the surprise visit of Queen Victoria to Guernsey. A guide, from another tour, told us that if we went to the museum they would give us a key. We so we did exactly that and enjoyed the incredible sites. Nearby, the tower has an interesting graveyard, which will take you back down to Candie Gardens. We then strolled around enjoying the peaceful town area. It is definitely worth a visit on your holidays. Early disembarkment, where one carries their own luggage, was really easy and prompt. Moreover, the Airlynx Cruise Parking, was great for our needs. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
Having sailed from Southampton many times we were a bit surprised to find a tail back with CPS parking at the Ocean terminal.The weather caused a certain amount of anxiety amongst those travelling from a far and to make sure they never ... Read More
Having sailed from Southampton many times we were a bit surprised to find a tail back with CPS parking at the Ocean terminal.The weather caused a certain amount of anxiety amongst those travelling from a far and to make sure they never missed their time or indeed the ship they left in plenty of time, only to find the roads clear and turning up hours before embarkation time. But once inside and having taken up the donated F card we found time quickly went by and I suppose 30 minutes later we were on the shipKnowing with Cunard that our cases will be safely placed in our cabins we headed for the Lido buffet and with our couple of cruise chums started the cruise from there. We have always found that the lido gives a varied and tasty selection with the addition of an ice cream cone be a child again, if one desires any time of the day. As this was a short 5 nighter we chose an inside having had a balcony last year for the longer trip to the Canaries which we have booked again for next year so 6027 was our home for the next few days and night's. Now here is a gripe as we found the room rather stuffy the air-conditioning not refreshing the air and sometimes even with the control right down we found it a tad too hot in fact my wife said that this was probably causing her a few bad nights sleep. Thinking this must be just us being in and inside ,we were surprised when standing at the excursion desk talking to a lady who was supposedly enjoying a balcony cabin, that she remarked first that it was too hot and she had opened the balcony door sometimes ? never have we or she experienced that before. Restaurant - I thought I would check with the Head Poncho in the Britannia restaurant and make sure we were seated with our cruise chums only to find after the usual long wait to see him that we had been put on separate tables?.The request having somehow been lost whilst booking back in August. But he did a grand job and we found ourselves by the rear window on a table of 4 so great job by the Maitre D. The food we experienced we all agreed, looked better than it tasted some dinners better than others some warmer than other's, but never really as at home = Hot!. I had a nice steak the first night and this was the only night offered and I did remark that we all thought there used to be a every day option running along side the actual day menu so if you were not particularly struck by the evenings menu you could switch to the back up plan.,that had gone and in fact when before I had asked for a steak when none was on the menu, the answer was always yes - this time our waiter looked confused and said he would have to ask his senior and he would get back to me. He came back and said "the Senior waiter would be over to see me soon", but the time all others had ordered their food, he had never appeared and I had to choose one of the other options on the days menu. Not really a 5 star approach one would think. The shows on the other hand in the main theatre were all excellent ,the singers and dancer's -Bernie Flint -and the 4 Guys playing 60's numbers all were worth the watch. Ports of Call Cruising is a a learning curve this being our 19th cruise the 2nd on Victoria and the 5th with Cunard, having done all 3 ships ,we fell foul for the first time of booking in advance excursions and travel with the companies direct instead of booking through Cunard. The weather played it's tricks and prevented the Captain from keeping to his original Itinerary so instead of Bruges from Zeebrugge the first port of call we landed up in Rotterdam at 7pm overnighting and not on the schedule at all ,high winds and rough sea's was the reason. Both of which, no one on board experienced, even after a warning from the bridge that the night would be a bit rough - nothing moved - so still -and this was discussed by everyone we met, as to why this warning and change of plans when all seemed very quiet. The dreaded sea lock probably. So the Train tickets went out of the window as they were dated for the 13th and with the dismissal of Amsterdam completely, a boat trip on the canals and Heineken brewery visit went the same way. So not so cost effective after all. Rotterdam was a bonus in a way, as neither myself and my wife or my Nephew and his wife had visited this part of South Holland. The ship berthed right in the centre of town next to the famous Swan bridge which cost 165,000,000 Euros to build back in 1989 and arriving at 7pm in the dark it was lit up and very pleasing to the eye, being directly in front of us poor people, sipping our G&T's in the Commodore lounge. In Rotterdam we did our own thing as per usual, visiting the Cube houses ,which has one house thats open at a small entrance fee to visitors @ 3 euro's each and seeing as to purchase one, would cost 250,000 Euro's ,we thought was quite cheap lol.Well worth a visit just for the experience of being disorientated for a short while as out through the window is the Pencil building another exercise in architecture.The market was next and again most unusual experience where we purchased various gifts to take back and finishing off in a nice bar to taste the Coffee and the local ale. We decided in Zeebrrugge to walk to Dorp station 23 minutes away, that's after getting the shortest bus ride in the word ,taking us from the ship to the port gates about 100 yards as we were not allowed to walk , Why Dorp? because the Blankenberg station would be full as there was 2 ships in Port and obviously Bruges the target for all transfers were to Blankenberg for the train to Brugge. This station was a small affair with just a a few people milling about cooking and serving but with a 15 minute wait we treated ourselves to cups of coffee which were some of the best coffee we had on the trip and the cheapest .The train cost 6 Euro's the return price and the train pulled in dead on at 10.05 am and 15 minutes later we were at Brugge station. The return trip due to inclement weather we returned to Blankenberg to pick up the shuttle which was waiting and took us back to the ship. Its just a lovely affair that you have with a Cruise ship like the Victoria its a sanctuary from the world, a place of indulgence, warmth and pleasure ,its your home for a few days its your ship !! its just a shame you have to give it back. Cherbourg was next and we actually got to use one of our pre booked tickets for the Maritime Museum which couldn't be closer if they tried -with a dedicated entrance for the ships the door being called "cruise Ship Passengers" we were inside the warm in minutes. "Le Redoutable" submarine was definitely the high light and worth the fare on its own--Huge monster of a vessel and an education in warfare. This is from another review and I couldn't agree more "On the other hand the The 'March into the Deep' was truly apalling. Tacky, poor taste, and a complete waste of our time. Once you enter into this area you cannot leave until you have completed ' the training'" I would like to add unless you were brain dead, or 4 years old, we found It was pathetic and embarrassingly bad .If you still intend to do it make faces at every opportunity as you are videoed and this cause some light relief at the end as we all looked bored stiff and pulling faces. Once in town we visited the market and found a nice small French restaurant for some Moules Marinière and a 1 Tasty Steak a large beer some wine for 4 people cost with tip 80 euro's = cheap.and Considering 1 bottle of Australian Black shiraz was $46 on board with a street price of around £10 its ouch again ,so we opted for the drinks package for 6 bottles costing $296 ?( I think thats right) which gave a 10% discount on a rip off price tag. So thats the lasting feeling you have with this trip yes the 5 star tag is in the fabulous bed and decor The whole ship is beautifully done having had that recent refurb. The library is worth a visit unlike the one on the P &O Azura which was dreadful - the bars are great - the G&T bar great, just leave your idea of fair pricing at home , hey ho your on holiday , Eat less when you get home and shop in the Super market for wine etc. we are here and now, its like life its a fab ship Make the most of it whilst you can. Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
We were invited to join this cruise by our son and his girlfriend as she had never been to Europe. We had never been on a Cunard ship before and expected to be wow-ed by the ship and its offerings. We had previous sailed with Royal ... Read More
We were invited to join this cruise by our son and his girlfriend as she had never been to Europe. We had never been on a Cunard ship before and expected to be wow-ed by the ship and its offerings. We had previous sailed with Royal Caribbean, Celebrity and, most recently, Oceania. The interior of the ship does reflect the glory days of ocean cruising with lots of dark wood. Several of the activities, like the high tea and orchestra, also reflect that. We were generally underwhelmed by the food overall. Guess Oceania set too high a bar for us. We also felt the service was sub-standard. Several staff, especially in the Lido buffet, several times we asked for something and were responded to with "Huh?" Several staff members who we asked for directions from couldn't direct us as they said they were brand new on the ship. This struck me as a safety issue as well as poor training. Cabin was fine, though we never met the cabin steward. Heated pools were nice, and the one excursion we took was fine. Embarkation and debarkation were also fine. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
We just completed our third voyage on Cunard and our first on Queen Victoria to celebrate Cunard's 175th anniversary. As with the previous 2 voyages, I didn't want to leave! This was a 6-day cruise: ... Read More
We just completed our third voyage on Cunard and our first on Queen Victoria to celebrate Cunard's 175th anniversary. As with the previous 2 voyages, I didn't want to leave! This was a 6-day cruise: Southampton-Guernsey-Liverpool-Southampton with 2 full sea days. We stayed in a Britannia balcony stateroom. Embarkation is very efficient at Southampton. If you are not priority (Grills, Platinum * Diamond Club), you are given a letter when you arrive and the boarding is by that letter. It works very well. We have previously sailed on QM2. QV has some significant differences but provides a very consistent Cunard experience to her big sister. The staterooms are almost identical, but a recent refit has changed the layout of the bathrooms and we found them to work very well for us. Our steward (Erwin) was fabulous and the dining experience exceeded QM2. Our party was accidentally split up on the first night but this was corrected by the Maitre'd and we were placed on a table with 3 other couples from night 2 and luckily connected well with our fellow cruisers. We dined during the day at the Lido and were really impressed by the variety and quality of food and the waiter service offered (if you want it), for tea & coffee. The Kings Court always felt a bit frantic on QM2, but the Lido seemed much better. We spent much time in the Commodore's Club as this was a firm favorite from our QM2 experiences but I have to say that this disappointed. The service was far too slow and there did not seem to be enough bartenders to meet the demand. The waiters were often misplacing guests cards and we spotted a few folks leaving without having been served at all. There is a piano singer and while the piano music is pleasant, when the singing starts, it's invasive and we tried to position ourselves as far from this as possible. I used the spa for a manicure and an acupuncture consultation. Both exceeded my expectations but I wasn't aware of the acupuncture services until really late in the voyage. If I'd have known earlier, I'd have taken a course of treatment. Also, there were some great deals offered on the last day of the cruise but by this time I'd made other commitments and would have liked to have known about them ahead of time too - the moral here is that if you're interested in the spa, go there right away and get a full list of services for your voyage so you can plan. The gym on QV is fantastic and we used it a number of times. They offer classes and we would have appreciated information on those ahead of time too as we'd have taken advantage of them if we'd known. Whether it was the short duration or the fact that most people were traveling domestic on the cruise, we found the launderettes to be a LOT less hectic than on QM2. We went ashore via the tenders (lifeboats) in Guernsey. This was very professionally handled and we were amazed at how many people they comfortably fit into each tender. The shore side of the operation was very well run and we were impressed that the tenders were running all the time rather than at fixed times (other than the first and last one, of course). In Liverpool, we waited until we were alongside at the cruise terminal before going ashore. I am originally from Liverpool and visit frequently so this was less of a priority for us. My family members took one of the scheduled excursions on Guernsey and were really impressed. It was well organized and Cunard obviously took time to find quality local resources who offer a worthwhile experience. We also attended the lectures and found them to be as informative and entertaining as previous ones we've attended. The library is great and we briefly used the internet service as we get complimentary minutes with Cunard. It is a satellite connection so is slow, but that was not a problem for us as our usage was not critical. We didn't have time to experience the shows but our fellow diners were really impressed. We also didn't bring our dancing shoes on this voyage but we really liked the look of Hemispheres, and it's location on Deck 10. It was busy every night. The 175 celebrations are obviously not a feature of every cruise so I won't review them here other than to say that they were utterly fantastic, tons of fun, well executed by all participants and a true once-in-a-lifetime experience. Although this was a special occasion, we are already combing Cunard brochures to find our next opportunity to take another voyage. Happy birthday Cunard, we had a blast! Read Less
Sail Date May 2015
Queen Victoria - Gallic Getaway - Review A short 3 night cruise to Cherbourg and Zeebrugge, with my wife and two young children. Boarding: This was easy. CPS Parking really helps, a cheerful baggage handler and no waiting to ... Read More
Queen Victoria - Gallic Getaway - Review A short 3 night cruise to Cherbourg and Zeebrugge, with my wife and two young children. Boarding: This was easy. CPS Parking really helps, a cheerful baggage handler and no waiting to board. Very painless. Disembarking: Easy also. We were late for our call, having children's 'things' to pack. But the queues moved quickly, both to disembark and to collect our car keys. Just make sure you have your 'pink slip' at hand for CPS. Room: The room was 'smaller' than the picture but fine. In fact we had two rooms, adjacent to each other, both with balconies. Certainly for us there was plenty of wardrobe space, the steward (Dennis) was friendly and helpful, and two bottles of chilled wine - most welcome. The amenities were excellent overall, and the daily news and programmes as well as the turn down service were all very welcome. No complaints at all! Food: We opted for the early dining in the Britannia restaurant. We were always made to feel welcome, our waiters were kind and helpful, and the service swift and efficient. We all liked the food. The fish and beef were especially good, and the capon delicious too! The children eat the same food, but often opted for ice cream for dessert. On formal nights we were ALL in formal attire. At the exit take advantage of the free mints and ginger too! Afternoon Tea - busy, but yummy. The Lido was also good. Mostly self service, but all worked well. Accept it for what it is and you won't be disappointed. A good choice of hot and cold, and an ice cream machine! I had a very nice vegetable curry - recommended. Entertainment: We watched two shows; Victoriana and an Irish themed show, as well as a comedian on day one. All were excellent. The theatre was pretty much full, with just a few seats free. The dancing and singing was all excellent - really VERY good indeed. Excursions: We took no formal excursions but relied on the excellent shuttle busses. They work really well, and can work out much cheaper if you are happy to be more self sufficient. Overall: We loved it. A large ship that does not feel too big. Good facilities, nice food, friendly and polite staff. We had no cause for complaint at all. Whilst the QV cannot ever emulate the feel of the QE2 it is still an enjoyable experience. One couple did mention that they felt standards had slipped a little. Certainly Cunard need to keep standards high, but overall they achieved that. Read Less
Sail Date August 2009
Queen Victoria Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.2
Dining 5.0 4.1
Entertainment 4.0 3.7
Public Rooms 5.0 4.5
Fitness Recreation 5.0 3.8
Family 3.0 3.8
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.5
Enrichment 4.0 3.7
Service 4.0 4.3
Value For Money 4.0 3.6
Rates 3.0 3.7

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