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55 World Cruise Luxury Cruise Reviews

We joined Queen Elizabeth on the 20th April in Cape Town. We had travelled on quite a few cruises on Queen Mary, but wow we were blown away by Queen Elizabeth. From the moment we stepped aboard, our holiday began and it was wonderful ... Read More
We joined Queen Elizabeth on the 20th April in Cape Town. We had travelled on quite a few cruises on Queen Mary, but wow we were blown away by Queen Elizabeth. From the moment we stepped aboard, our holiday began and it was wonderful the entire journey. From the food in the Lido to the Brittannia, we could not have asked for more. The shows were wonderful, with the exception of one show. Our entire experience was superb and we so look forward to being able to travel on Queen Elizabeth again. The cabin was in a lovely condition. It was really easy to navigate through the ship without getting loss. I certainly recommend a holiday on Queen Elizabeth. The staff on the ship were only too happy to go the extra mile, whether it was in Brittannia or at the buffet in the Lido. The friendliness was absolutely superb. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
I chose the QM2 because of its reputation and a desire to sail on her. It was the smoothest sailing I have ever experienced. The ship is spacious. The stateroom was very comfortable. QM2 is a true ocean liner and a grand ship. The pre ... Read More
I chose the QM2 because of its reputation and a desire to sail on her. It was the smoothest sailing I have ever experienced. The ship is spacious. The stateroom was very comfortable. QM2 is a true ocean liner and a grand ship. The pre cruise package purchased through Cunard was dreadful because the transfer from Singapore's Changi airport to the Fairmont hotel didn't happen - nobody was at the airport to pick us up. After an international flight we had to walk all over the airport trying to find someone who could answer our question 'where is our transfer?'. We ended up getting a taxi to the Fairmont Hotel where we were persuaded to pay additional money to upgrade our pre-paid room. Nobody from Cunard or the transfer personnel contacted us to apologise for the confusion. We were told somebody would pick our bags up next morning and deliver them to another hotel where we had to walk to and claim our bags before boarding the transfer. Unimpressed with this chaos we decided to pay for a taxi to port ourselves. Cunard have never offered any compensation despite the matter being reported to them. The room at the Fairmont was lovely and we had use of the club lounge for food, drinks and breakfast. This privilege was only because I paid to upgrade as otherwise we had to walk to another hotel for breakfast. Embarkation was a chaotic nightmare as the computers broke and thousands of people waited hours to embark. As far as the experience on the Queen Mary 2 I have to say it was wonderful. We particularly enjoyed the viewing window to the bridge. The dining experiences were wonderful and the food delicious. The captain was a gentleman. After exploration of the QM2 we were not that impressed with the kennels as the outside area seemed insecure in terms of fencing and it looked like some dogs could just jump the railing. We travelled through high risk waters (pirates) without incident and there was a black out each night with curtains drawn. Yet I had to alert the reception that the outside lighting / ship's night lights were still on so I think those pirates would still have seen us! There was a viral outbreak during the cruise which made things unpleasant as it is with all cruises that have these outbreaks. Yes I would love to travel on the Queen Mary 2 again as it was a grand experience. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
I've just read a number of the reviews for this ship and can't quite believe that I was on the same ship as the other reviewers. We found the cruise, all 40 nights of it to be generally and overwhelmingly wonderful. The ... Read More
I've just read a number of the reviews for this ship and can't quite believe that I was on the same ship as the other reviewers. We found the cruise, all 40 nights of it to be generally and overwhelmingly wonderful. The itinerary was brilliant. We travelled from Abu Dhabi to Miami, on the final two legs of the 2017 world cruise. There were some outstanding ports of call and barely any that I wouldn't happily go back to. Only two of the tours that we did weren't up to scratch - but that's the local tour guide more than anything. As most of the passengers had been on from the start, we certainly noticed that they were starting to get tired and generally didn't mix as well as other cruises we've been on. But that wasn't a problem, we are happy with our own company and there is always someone to talk to when you want. The cabin was very comfortable: spacious, clean, bright and exactly as you'd want. There is a full size bath and a good shower; a walk-in wardrobe with plenty of space; an exceptionally comfortable king size bed and all the amenities you'd want. The cabin stewards were lovely people. The food was exceptional, though I don't quite go for all the palaver about caviar on Sundays - such a push to get it too! We mostly ate in Compass Rose and really enjoyed it. As vegetarians, the offerings in the specialty Prime 7 weren't suited for us and after trying it, we cancelled future reservations. The desserts there though were amazing and, delightfully, you could pre-order them to be delivered to Compass Rose anyway. Afternoon teas were stunning and I could not fault the offerings in the bar. The entertainment was patchy. Some of the lecturers were excellent (Terry, yay) others were ok and a couple were meh. Likewise the entertainment, though most was excellent but the comedians, very ordinary. Maybe it's that they were playing to an older, richer American audience but I didn't find the political and the dated jokes all that funny. No, we are not all Trump supporters on this ship! And the destinations were all that you could ask for and more. We want to return to a number of them. If I had any complaint at all, it would be that some of the other passengers were pushy - some seriously hated to be in any but the front seats of the bus on excursions and some overrated what they could realistically do on an excursion - Regent clearly identify activity level but a couple of pax were determined to slowly trudge, grumbling all the while, behind the group on a 'strenuous' tour. That said, we recommend it and will happily return. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
This 7 night cruise was our 4th time aboard Mary, and our 5th week in terms of days. We were keen to see the changes made during the refit last year as we had spent 16 nights on her just prior (BNE/HKG) Boarding at HKG was great, we ... Read More
This 7 night cruise was our 4th time aboard Mary, and our 5th week in terms of days. We were keen to see the changes made during the refit last year as we had spent 16 nights on her just prior (BNE/HKG) Boarding at HKG was great, we were in the 4th group called and were on board by 1pm and by 2pm we had squared all our clothes away and were enjoying the complementary sparkling wine on our balcony. Refit Changes - As mentioned by many others, the carpet is a little odd, not the design (I think the starburst design is good) but mainly the faded aspect of one side of the passageways. The Carinthia lounge is much better than the Wintergarden but alas, we liked it before because it was so quiet and now it is very popular, so that is a success for the ship, we still spent a fair bit of time there for lunch. The new deck 13 cabins provided a "deck 14" viewing option which is awesome (see photos), gives a really good aspect without detracting from Mary's overall look.We talked to one lady who was in the new single cabins and she offered us a look, these (as expected) were fantastic, lovely marble bathroom, king single bed and a chaise lounger to look out the large window, the wife and I wish we could book one of these for us as a couple - so roomy! Food possibly was not quite as good as previous voyages, we dined at the Veranda and that was top notch quality, ambiance still poor as there were only a few diners, Cunard need to reduce the price to get more people dining, last year it was USD50 for us both in Todd English, now the V charges USD50 each and I dont think we would go back again unless it was bustling. Smoker's still occupy a small area on the main pool deck 8 as well as deck 7, I think they should be confined to deck 7 as aft as possible. Our cabin being balcony deck 11 was terrific, bed just as relaxing as ever, loved the balcony, hopefully the next refit will see the bathroom improved which is now a little dated, especially seeing the new single stateroom bathrooms. Our only port stop was Laem Chabang and we did not feel like a long bus trip to Bangkok and wanted to maximise our time on the ship.Overall another great trip on Mary, shame it was so short but this was a great value trip for us and looking to book our next trip to continue our round the world trip on her, one sector each year..... Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
We chose this cruise due to the ports served. Originally planned to go with Oceania but I did not like the reviews. Cunard did not gouge us on Visas for example. Oceania charged $150 for Vietnam visas Cunard only $30. We upgraded to ... Read More
We chose this cruise due to the ports served. Originally planned to go with Oceania but I did not like the reviews. Cunard did not gouge us on Visas for example. Oceania charged $150 for Vietnam visas Cunard only $30. We upgraded to Princess and that made a big difference. The Princess Grill was the best run dining room that I have ever seen. If you take a cruise on this ship it is worth the extra money to upgrade. The better dining room with any tie dining and the private lounges and extra room make it well worth it. Service on the ship was excellent. I loved every day and loved the exotic ports. Shore excursions were good but we did a lot of private tours. The only bad thing that I canny is that the precruise service from the Cunard Call Center is awful. Any time I called they gave me misinformation. Great time great food great ports great staff. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
We joined the ship in Singapore -one of our favourite cities in the world- and as Silverseas arranged the flights we were met and taked to the hotel and on Tuesday to the ship. We walked straight on and it was lovely to be ... Read More
We joined the ship in Singapore -one of our favourite cities in the world- and as Silverseas arranged the flights we were met and taked to the hotel and on Tuesday to the ship. We walked straight on and it was lovely to be 'home' again. The ports of call were the normal for these sectors but there were a few new ones so we were happy to wander around without the need for a guide The food in the resturant was for the most part excellent and only 2 or 3 nights did it fail. even I make mistakes :( We really enjoyed lunch on sea days in the resturant as it was not hurried and the food was excellent. and you could easily dine in complete privacy. We finished in Monte Carlo and are trying to book a little sector for 2019 but it seems like it will be booked out as it ends in London for a change Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
Having travelled with Silversea before, I decided to try an expedition ship - I was a little daunted before I travelled but after talking in depth with my cruise advisor, I was a little more relaxed. I was so surprised at how incredible ... Read More
Having travelled with Silversea before, I decided to try an expedition ship - I was a little daunted before I travelled but after talking in depth with my cruise advisor, I was a little more relaxed. I was so surprised at how incredible the whole experience was. I stayed in Phuket pre-cruise and met with a friend from a previous cruise. The flights were excellent, the service by Silversea to the hotels and ship were excellent and the cruise was magnificent. The staff were amazing - they couldn't do enough to assist us. That includes restaurant, butler and bar staff who all knew our names and were just lovely. They also had great senses of humour and put up with all our idiosyncrasies. The food was generally of a high standard and I had no complaints. Our amazing restaurant waitress, Catherine was a firm favourite so I always ate dinner at one of her tables where we were assisted by Darwin, the Sommelier who was most informative and actually found me a lovely red that I actually liked, which is no mean feat. Caroline was also on hand to assist. My butler, Ivy was superb and couldn't do enough to help me. The expedition team as well as the fitness team were amazing and not only did they inform us, look after us and find amazing destinations but they also advised on future trips and gave us insight to experiences that they had had. James the photographer took a superb DVD that we could purchase at the end of the trip - it was worth every penny I spent. The experiences in Thailand and Indonesia were phenomenal from seeing Oran-utangs in the wild to cultural dancing, the Simelue islands that had never been visited before by a cruise ship, where the people were so friendly and welcoming, to the Nias Islands where we watched the initiation ceremony of young men jumping over high walls with bare feet and landing onto stone - crazy but incredible. The different buildings and villages were also superb - to be honest the experiences were too many to describe, but we also visited Anak Krakatoa - mind blowing as well as a wonderful day on Kura Kura for some relaxation and snorkelling. Riding the zodiacs was fantastic. Basically, I can wax lyrical for ever but if you haven't done it, get out there and do it. My cabin was amazing. Do not listen to negatives as the positives totally outweigh the positives as there are no negatives. Silversea are fantastic. Go cruise. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
We joined the ship in Sydney,heading for Los Angeles,about 28 nights.We have been with Cunard on many cruises,but this was the longest cruise we have taken. Embarkation was quick and efficient.Our luggage was in our room before we ... Read More
We joined the ship in Sydney,heading for Los Angeles,about 28 nights.We have been with Cunard on many cruises,but this was the longest cruise we have taken. Embarkation was quick and efficient.Our luggage was in our room before we arrived.The stateroom was wonderful,room 5097 in the Princess Grill.The food in the restaurant could not be faulted.Every meal was a treat,and the service we received fro our waiters was superb.Always a smile.Entertainment was fantastic,every night a different show.The theatre is wonderful on this ship.Activities proved to be perfect for us.The library was well stocked.Everywhere around the ship staff always had a smile and a word to say,making us feel at home.The excursions at all the ports of call were well planned and we enjoyed them all,especially our trip to Alcatraz,and the visit to a Koala reservation from Melbourne.The overall experience was just wonderful and I would recommend this ship as a first class ship for long cruises.The service we received in the Grills lounge was equal to a 5 * hotel.We will certainly be returning. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
We enjoyed the 13-night, Brisbane to Kobe leg of Queen Elizabeth's 2017 world cruise. Embarkation at Brisbane's temporary international cruise terminal at Fisherman Island was smooth and we were quickly in our balcony cabin ... Read More
We enjoyed the 13-night, Brisbane to Kobe leg of Queen Elizabeth's 2017 world cruise. Embarkation at Brisbane's temporary international cruise terminal at Fisherman Island was smooth and we were quickly in our balcony cabin 6030. The cabin was quiet and comfortable although we initially found the air-conditioning to be cold and drafty even at the highest temperature setting, but after being adjusted by one of the ship's technicians it was fine. It's a beautiful, well-maintained ship. I particularly liked the Royal Court theatre, the Queens Room, the Golden Lion pub and the two-level library with its quirky spiral staircase. Almost all of the public areas of the ship are attractive, well laid-out and easy to navigate. I also liked the Pavilion Pool area and was able to swim laps in the pool late in the afternoon most days, at times when the pool was usually uncrowded. We had a table for two during the second (8:30 pm) dinner sitting in the lower level of the Britannia Restaurant. Although the portions were generally small the food was tasty, nicely presented and we had two fantastic waiters. However, we found the second sitting a bit too late and if we go with Cunard again we would try to get reservations for the first (6:00 pm) sitting or to upgrade to the Britannia Club, which has open seating from 6:30 pm. We had breakfast and lunch in the Lido Restaurant where the food was of reasonable quality although the service was, perhaps understandably, somewhat impersonal and definitely less friendly than the Britannia Restaurant. We particularly liked some of the guest performers in the theatre but were not so impressed with the Cunard in-house performances, where we found the singing in the Broadway and West End productions a bit repetitive and shrill. The theatre's resident band was, however, very impressive. The musicians in the ship's various lounges and nightspots were also very good. Being from Queensland we had visited Cairns several times before, so my wife elected to stay on board during the ship's first port of call, Yorkeys Knob. I made a quick return trip to shore, primarily to get some photos of the Queen Elizabeth at anchor, despite the inclement weather. The second port of call was a sunny, but very hot and steamy Alotou (Milne Bay), Papua New Guinea, where we both took the opportunity to have some cold drinks at the Alotou International Hotel located nearby, on the bay. The third port of call was Okinawa, Japan, where we just visited one of the main shopping streets on a fairly damp, overcast day. The final port on this sector was Kobe, Japan, where we dis-embarked and stayed at the Okura Hotel in a room having a great view of the harbour. From there we saw the Queen Elizabeth depart later that day. Overall, a great cruise on a beautiful ship with a friendly crew (and a very personable captain). Hopefully we'll get the opportunity to travel with Cunard again. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
We sailed from San Francisco (February 4, 2017), with final destination in Sydney. It sure beat having to fly from Orlando, to Sydney. There were stops in Oahu, Maui, Western Samoa, Tonga, Auckland, and Bay of Islands. I highly recommend ... Read More
We sailed from San Francisco (February 4, 2017), with final destination in Sydney. It sure beat having to fly from Orlando, to Sydney. There were stops in Oahu, Maui, Western Samoa, Tonga, Auckland, and Bay of Islands. I highly recommend this ship; the best way to some up the ship, would be elegant. Karen (Activities Staff) made the time fly by and extremely fun!! My wife and I are Elite Plus with Celebrity, so we know what fine cruising should be!! When we crossed the Equator, the ship had a big ceremony for all the Pollywogs to trans form into Shellbacks. All the passengers and crew had to lineup to "Kiss the Fish." Some received more attention then others. Ha Ha We sailed on the Azamara Quest, in November, this is the type of ship we expected. The only thing some cruiser might not like, is you have to dress up for dinner, we enjoyed it. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
we chose this cruise because even though we have done many shorter cruises on other cruise lines we were excited to cruise across the Atlantic ocean, down to the Caribbean, through the panama canal and home to Australia. Both our ... Read More
we chose this cruise because even though we have done many shorter cruises on other cruise lines we were excited to cruise across the Atlantic ocean, down to the Caribbean, through the panama canal and home to Australia. Both our embarkation and disembarkation involved minimum waiting, and luggage collection went smoothly too. Our cabin 6068 was midships, had a lovely balcony, and was kept impeccably by out steward John. He provided outstanding service, even washing down our balconies and cleaning all the exterior glass well after 8pm. The Britannia dining room was terrific. we could have found fault with the occasional meal but the service was fantastic, our table companions were a merry bunch, and overall the food was 5 star quality. the Lido buffet provided food of great standard too. The ports of call were all interesting, were well covered before arrival with different speakers giving history, activities ashore etc. there were many organised trips ashore, these however ranged from expensive to very expensive so we generally organised our own when we were ashore. Internet although slow was free for world cruises(up to 135 min each per sector each). the do it yourself laundry was free, the library was fantastic with 7000+ books. The entertainment was extensive and very varied. I only wrote this report to counter the many complainers we had on board who treated the crew abominably, and generally complained about everything. it was a wonderful cruise and very good value overall. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
WE love Oceania Cruise Line. We didn't specifically choose Insignia, we choose the itinerary. That being said, being on Insignia was an added bonus. This was our third adventure on Insignia. From Captain Flokus to crew members, the ... Read More
WE love Oceania Cruise Line. We didn't specifically choose Insignia, we choose the itinerary. That being said, being on Insignia was an added bonus. This was our third adventure on Insignia. From Captain Flokus to crew members, the vessel is small yet large and very personal. The food was excellent. Booked on Marina this October. Cusomter Service, specifically, William Park, is extraordinary! The entertainment was great!We happened to be on board over Halloween and there was a great Halloween party. Sanitation is a big deal.... no novovirus there! Personnel are friendly, learn your name and your drink orders. WE were in a penthouse suite with excellent butler service. No problem to order room service at 3 a.m. Safety of the passengers and crew is of utmost importance. WE have traveled with Oceania 5 times, our 6th will be in October and and couldn't be happier. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
St Petersburg has been on my bucket list but I wanted to avoid the crowds of summer so the dates were ideal. They also offered a substantial number & variety of shore excursions from which to choose The ship came highly ... Read More
St Petersburg has been on my bucket list but I wanted to avoid the crowds of summer so the dates were ideal. They also offered a substantial number & variety of shore excursions from which to choose The ship came highly recommended & surpassed expectations. we opted for a local tour guide, again to enjoy a small group & we chose Best Guides , located in St Petersburg. Not only was it less costly than the ship's excursion but everything about them was excellent. The planning was perfect, the guide was delightful, knowledgeable & allowed us to make modifications to the itinerary - some before we left & another while we were there. I highly recommend them. The ship was excellent - the food & service was outstanding. We visited 9 countries in 12 days which was a trifle hectic but quite doable. Comments from most other guests were all favourable & I wouldn't hesitate to travel with Oceania again Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
We wanted to celebrate our special anniversary in a memorable way, this trip was beyond our expectations. We chose the Marina at the recommendation of friends, and the Baltic cruise was on our bucket list. We were so happy with both ... Read More
We wanted to celebrate our special anniversary in a memorable way, this trip was beyond our expectations. We chose the Marina at the recommendation of friends, and the Baltic cruise was on our bucket list. We were so happy with both choices. The ship was so well equipped, just the right size for us, and every meal was a gourmet treat. We especially loved the Red Ginger. The cabin was a concierge, a balcony to enjoy the scenery and luxury bathroom, with the added feature of access to the concierge lounge that allowed us access to early morning coffee, newspapers, etc right on our level. Nice perk. The staff could not do enough for you and very friendly, always a genuine smile.Lots to do and see on the ship itself, great evening entertainment but we were kept busy with daily shore excursions. We did not book these thru the ship but thru small group tours with SPB tours or we just went out to explore ourselves. Every city and country we visited had a different flavor, people and politics which we discovered with delight. The best part of the tour is that we met so many interesting, like minded people on the ship, becoming friends. The world is made up of friends and we will be keeping in touch with them. WE would not hesitate to travel on the Marina again and strongly recommend to our friends Heather and Vince Meehan Campbellville Ontario Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
We chose the Baltic cruise with the Oceania Line on the Marina Ship mainly because of the Itinerary. The itinerary of the ports of call was terrific. We totally enjoyed the stopover in St. Petersburg - it was the highlight of the trip. ... Read More
We chose the Baltic cruise with the Oceania Line on the Marina Ship mainly because of the Itinerary. The itinerary of the ports of call was terrific. We totally enjoyed the stopover in St. Petersburg - it was the highlight of the trip. We spent a day in SPB and then a day in Moscow, and then the final day back in SPB. We used Alla Tours for this experience and it was as great as we could have expected. We enjoyed every single port of call and had great tours and did some of the ports on our own. Oceania - Marina was a great ship. We never felt movement over the Baltic Sea and we had a Penthouse Suite which was spacious and very well located on the ship with great amenities.. The food was very good. The specialty restaurants were gourmet. The Wine Spectator dinner that we spent extra for was superb. All in all I would rate this particular trip 5 *****. Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
We choose Oceania on the recommendation of some friends who had taken their cruise in Alaska. In looking at the itinerary I saw that on Nautica's August 28, 2016 itinerary, there were some ports we had not been to so that is why I ... Read More
We choose Oceania on the recommendation of some friends who had taken their cruise in Alaska. In looking at the itinerary I saw that on Nautica's August 28, 2016 itinerary, there were some ports we had not been to so that is why I choose Oceania. Everything (food, cabin, staff, ports, etc.) about it was excellent!!! The ratio of passengers to staff makes for very personal service. We liked the idea of going to breakfast, lunch, or dinner when we wanted instead of having to have reservations or a particular time....of course during operating hours. However, there were 2 speciality restaurants where you had to make reservations. One was the Polo Grill and the other Toscana. These were a little less casual (& many men didn't wear jackets) & more refined (for lack of another word), because there was "wait staff" so there wasn't passengers walking to & fro, getting up & down, etc. This was nice once in a while, although we found we also liked eating "casual" after walking around a port or touring. Most of the passengers were 65+ I would guess. Many of those we spoke to had been on a number of other cruises in their 70-80 years. All very interesting people. I was surprised that more men didn't wear jeans, although one wasn't out of place if he did. Guess "older" men prefer khakis when traveling. Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
I am normally a serial complainer and fault finder, but Oceania beat me this time !! I went on this cruise which I did on the same ship 2 years ago and had been to most of the ports of call before only one was not worth the effort ... Read More
I am normally a serial complainer and fault finder, but Oceania beat me this time !! I went on this cruise which I did on the same ship 2 years ago and had been to most of the ports of call before only one was not worth the effort Kristensand .. The boarding in Southampton was exceptionally fast and smooth to find Marina was in immaculate condition, the cabin was ready us by 1pm.. We ate in mainly the Specialty restaurants and had the most superb food on any cruise, I usually find fault with something but could not here.both service and food were 100%. The service from all the staff was exceptional and put this down to the new Hotel Manager who was non stop at being everywhere everyday, he even went round tables in restaurants speaking to guests . The entertainment and lecturers were poor to say the least, words escape me to describe the violinist bizarre is the only word that comes to mind . Leaving the ship in Copenhagen was also smooth and speedy, Thanks O C for a wonderful experience and am looking forward to my next one. . Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
The cruise went to specific countries we wanted to visit. The trivia team games were fun! The lecturer from UCLA, Dr. Teofilo Ruiz, was superb and the best historian I have ever heard on a cruise and I have been on 30 cruises. The ... Read More
The cruise went to specific countries we wanted to visit. The trivia team games were fun! The lecturer from UCLA, Dr. Teofilo Ruiz, was superb and the best historian I have ever heard on a cruise and I have been on 30 cruises. The food was excellent and with free soft drinks, we could drink sodas as much as we wished. The Oceania cruise staff was very efficient and organized. The collection and later return of passports was fast and very well organized.The organization of tour groups at each port was fast, efficient and the best I have ever seen. The tour guides at all the ports were very knowledgeable in their subjects and spoke English very fluently. I felt I was back in grad school taking history courses. The only suggestion I would make is for Oceania to improve their internet connections on their cruise ships. There is a need that the wifi and Internet access be constant and not off most of the time. For a cruise almost a month long, the constant intermittent reception of wifi internet access was a problem. Also, it would have been nice if movies could have been shown that went with some of our ports. For example, in Jordan the cruise line could have shown the old film, Lawrence of Arabia, which took place in Jordan and was filmed in Jordan in 1917 during the Arab Revolt against the Ottoman Turkish Empire. When we were in Egypt, there are many films that could have been shown about ancient Egypt. Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
Sailed from Papeete, French Polynesia to Lima Peru. Cuisine on ship was unbelievable. Top quality food. No charge for specialty restaurant dining in the four specialty restaurants on board. Main dining room was excellent also. ... Read More
Sailed from Papeete, French Polynesia to Lima Peru. Cuisine on ship was unbelievable. Top quality food. No charge for specialty restaurant dining in the four specialty restaurants on board. Main dining room was excellent also. Specialty restaurants require reservations, but the main dining room did not and we never had to wait. For lunch the Dining Room featured different areas of the world each day and a food sampling plate was available of special delicacies. Don't normally eat in the buffet for evening meal but couldn't pass up, steak and lobster tails on two occasions. Higher staff to passenger ratio and it showed. Prompt attention to all details, whether dining or cabin. Staff was extremely friendly and efficient and frequently remembered our last name. Ship never felt crowded. Afternoon tea was special and sweets served often changed, accompanied by a string quartet. Only disappointment was not being able to tender in at Easter Island due to weather on both scheduled days. Rest of the ports were special and we enjoyed each one. You do pay more on Oceania but the money was well worth it. There is no charge for soda or specialty coffees. Have a variety of Coke products along with bottled water in stateroom refrigerator at no charge with daily replenishment was nice. Also encouraged to take readily available bottled water (free of charge) when going off the ship. Some of the meals like all those in Red Ginger Restaurant, ate there three times, equaled or exceeded some of the top restaurants around. Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
This was our 7th Oceania cruise and 5th time on the Regatta. It was quite wonderful, as always and most of the ports were interesting. The entertainment seems better now that NCL has taken over and the service is what we have come to ... Read More
This was our 7th Oceania cruise and 5th time on the Regatta. It was quite wonderful, as always and most of the ports were interesting. The entertainment seems better now that NCL has taken over and the service is what we have come to expect with Oceania. We always take a taxi from the airport to the ship, as it is much less expensive. We did an independent tour in Guatemala using 'Go With Gus' and it was great. We used Viator for the tour in Costa Maya and enjoyed it also. We always enjoy the specialty restaurants and the food in all the venues was of the same quality we have enjoyed in the past. Since airfare was included we were disappointed that Oceania booked us on the 'red eye' from PHX to MIA and we were extremely tired beginning the cruise, so that was the only negative. We were in a penthouse suite this time and it was roomy and fun to have a butler. Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
We booked this World Cruise segment from Sydney to Hong Kong the day Cunard opened up the books a year and a half prior to departure. Having cruised on QE and also on QV before we knew what to expect but Cunard makes their World Cruises ... Read More
We booked this World Cruise segment from Sydney to Hong Kong the day Cunard opened up the books a year and a half prior to departure. Having cruised on QE and also on QV before we knew what to expect but Cunard makes their World Cruises always more special. The guests on this segment were overwhelmingly Australians with Brits, Germans and Americans also strongly represented. A port call scheduled for Cebu (Philippines) was cancelled prior to departure with an unclear explanation that suggested some security issue. Puerto Princesa was substituted and turned out to be quite acceptable. We were lucky with the smooth seas throughout and generally sunny and warm weather. There were about nine days at sea which nicely augmented the port days. Shore excursions were a mixed bag as is usual on most cruises, some very good others not so much. We took most of our dinners in the Queens Grill and were rewarded with uniformly excellent food and service as were the two dinners we enjoyed at the Verandah Restaurant. Most of our other meals we ate at the Lido and they were quite adequate. Having the Grills upper deck available to us for lounging and sunbathing was a nice bonus. Disembarkation at Hong Kong's Ocean Terminal was confusing but we did manage to make our way through the shopping mall to baggage claim. The only fly in the ointment was the disappointing quality of the ship's dancing troupe which has not improved since we last saw them three years ago. Over all, however this was a wonderful experience. Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
We had a superb trip, nice people aboard. I have mobility issues so we booked the handicap cabin with Balcony . Oceania have only 6 handicap cabins aboard....for that I fault them. On most cruise line you can book a handicap cabin at ... Read More
We had a superb trip, nice people aboard. I have mobility issues so we booked the handicap cabin with Balcony . Oceania have only 6 handicap cabins aboard....for that I fault them. On most cruise line you can book a handicap cabin at everylevel, but on Oceania there is not much choice. the service from staff is excellent. Grab bars in all public washrooms. Staff carry your food to your table if you eat in Wave or Grill terrace on the 12 th floor. We loved eating on the deck outside in the back of the ship. Internet access was good, very fast early in the morbid or late at night, very slow for obvious reasons during the day. Food was excellent everywhere but our personal favorite was red ginger. Jacques being second. The room was spacious, pool area usually not incredibly busy. In destinations Bora Bora and Moorea were by far our favourites. Embarkation was not great and disembarkation was better. One nice thing is that they allow you to bring your wine (great in Australia and New Zealand) aboard. There is a 25$ corkage fee and if you do bring liquor you can only drink it in your room . All in all a very nice experience Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
Reading other reviews, it seems that cruisers can be very tribal, “we love P & O, nothing else compares” or “RC is the best by far”. We have written this review with a totally open mind and reported on what was both our ... Read More
Reading other reviews, it seems that cruisers can be very tribal, “we love P & O, nothing else compares” or “RC is the best by far”. We have written this review with a totally open mind and reported on what was both our personal feelings and what we observed. If people want to either criticise or praise Cunard that is fine with us, as we are all different and have varying expectations from cruise companies. We booked our QM2 World Cruise about 18 months ago, as allocation of cabins for ‘all the way rounders’ is limited and having saved for many years we wanted to secure the best we could afford and enjoy the anticipation of the lead in period and what was before us. We booked a balcony on deck 11 well away from laundries, service doors etc (please bear this in mind when you make a booking, as these essential facilities can be noisy at times!). Cunard offered a very good early booking incentive, including a huge on board credit and free gratuities, this generosity has not been repeated in the 2017 and 2018 World Cruises! Unfortunately, after booking the cruise we found out the QM2 was due for a refit almost immediately after our return, which obviously made us very anxious (would they let it deteriorate below the standard reasonably expected). Therefore, we manged our expectations and were pleasantly surprised with the overall ambiance and condition we found. For those who are considering a long cruise there are additional issues and expenditure to consider not least the cost of Visa’s (cost us over £800.00) and insurance, particularly if you have a pre-existing medical condition, which I think would cover a large percentage of 60’s. Not only was visiting countries with a high cost of health care a problem but the length of the journey was an issue with all polices I could find only going to a 90 day maximum, while this cruise like other world cruises are 120 days ! Boarding at Southampton Very easy to drop off luggage (15 items !!) but the queuing and booking in was unnecessarily chaotic but compared to an airport just about acceptable. Cabin and facilities Very spacious with adequate wardrobe space, WC and shower area a reasonable and adequate size, usual facilities some would expect (fridge, safe etc) but the TV was poor and very dated. The large double bed and linen were superb and extremely comfortable. Restaurants and general catering We used the Britannia Restaurant most but not all nights and found the food to be to a good standard, obviously some nights were better than others but overall we found it acceptable, as was the Kings Court Buffett once you got used to its challenging layout! We used Room Service quite a bit as we did not want to go out every night, again the speed and standard of service was great along with the quality of the food we ordered. Ports of call As there were so many and almost every one being unique and special in their own way, it would be difficult to do justice to the huge variation of cultures and experiences we were fortunate enough to encounter. So it would be easier and more informative if we said what we did not enjoy or ever intend to experience again. 1) Salvador South America, a robber’s paradise. Not only was there a underlying tension / apprehension walking around but at least 6 passengers, we know of were mugged by way of grabbing neck chains and other jewellery (I know they were warned not to wear such items) but the ones I came across were not ostentatious but seemed to be small and of personal significance. Anyway, putting that to aside, one instance I was witness to was a large (and very nice) American who was set upon by 3 in a public area very close to several police officers. After the incident the chap went up to the police to enquire why they did not help him and was told they did not seen anything! When he wished to make a crime report for insurance purpose, he was asked when the ship sailed, when they were told 4.30, they said it would not be possible to complete the crime report until 5.30. Now you know why crime statistics can be misleading! 2) Ushuaia Argentina. While a unique place (similar to Alaska in many respects) it was made clear that the Brits were not welcome. The captain had a hard time from the Port Authorities making his life as difficult as possible particularly with regard to tender space. While many (but not all) bars and restaurants would not serve Brits. Clearly the Falklands is still a big issue with these folks. My advice if you go there, is to stay on board you are not missing much and clearly they do not want our tourist dollars ! Shore Excursions. As ever we did not use the on-board offerings as they were poor value for money with many people returning from various trips complaining about duration, places visited and time available for sightseeing. We always suggested that they do the same as us and team up with another couple and get a local taxi (the ones outside the port gates are in our experience better value), it depends on the country but it will average about a $75 per couple. Our best and most memorable experiences were the Tut Tuts in Colombo (Sri Lanka) and Cochin (India). With Cochin being particularly amazing as we were shown numerous temples (from a local perspective), Meat and Fish markets, Elephants used for the religious festivals, eating with locals and observing how they fish and a commercial Dhobi (Indian laundry using stone troughs and bashing the washing against the trough and finishing with a charcoal heated iron) we have never seen such white laundry. We spent about 5 hrs on this Tut Tut for $30, everyone was very happy. So our message to those who are frightened about sightseeing other than using any ships poor value excursions, go for it, it is easier than you think, perfectly safe and timely for the ship if common sense is applied. Ships stability and overall sea journey As you would expect with the world’s only ocean liner, it was stable and a superb experience even in the rougher seas we experience in the North Atlantic and emerging into the Pacific Ocean after rounding the cape. Before we departed there was degree of hesitancy on our part with regard to the length of the cruise (120 days), as the longest we had previous undertaken was 27 days. Those fears of boredom and isolation were soon dispelled as we found the on-board activities, lectures and special interest groups filling our day. Learning to play Bridge and basic Mandarin are just 2 small examples along with plenty of opportunities for real down time either in the fantastic on-board Spa or reading via books from the exceptional good library or our Kindle. While the ship was full or just about full on every segment there was always a feeling of space and never being crowded, Steamers and Sun Loungers always available with plenty of room for personal relaxation (Dubai to UK excepted when the Brits got on, more about that later). While I know Cunard like many others add a 15% service charge, I have to say their generosity towards guests at the many and varied receptions we attended was second to none. Unlike another sister cruise company P & O who think a single glass of second rate wine and coloured cordial will suffice for such occasions (getting my tin hat on ready for the misguided P & O er’s to batter me !). While on board, we had a small emergency at 5am when a window on our cabin balcony shattered with a loud bang. The Purser’s office were up within minutes, we were quickly moved to a temporary cabin while the area was made safe and repaired (about 6 hours). Cause unknown but they suspect because it was so hot outside (about 98 degree’s) and relatively cold inside (we run AC, close to max chill) the uneven expansion of the glass caused the shattering! Cunard could not have done more to resolve this unexpected and rare occurrence. Overall the ambiance on board was very special with each segment / sector attracting different nationalities, so at different times we would have a high ratio of either American, Australian, Chinese, Asians etc. according to the segment we either sailed from or were heading for, all very friendly, well mannered (well almost all) and a joy to be with. But that all changed in Dubai when the Brits boarded bringing with them Norvo virus and general disruption on what had been a very pleasant and relaxing cruise. Reflecting upon this change, as it felt like we were on another cruise line / ship. I came to the conclusion that living here and experiencing the rudeness and selfishness on a day to day basis you tend to become immune to the un-pleasantries of life, it is only after having such a long and enjoyable break from such behaviour do you realise, as a county just how bad we are. Some small examples, to the best of my knowledge there was no Norvo Virus or other sickness that is passed by poor hygiene on board before Dubai. From Dubai I witnessed several examples of people (invariably a more mature age group) using the toilet and leaving without washing their hands (so did my wife) when challenged in a polite manner, we were either ignored or treated to some strong Anglo Saxon phrases ! This was compounded by many ignoring the long suffering staff offering sanitising liquid when entering the buffet area, again almost all the same age group. Many who had the virus would not stay in their room as instructed by the ships doctors thus the contamination continued a lot longer than it should have, spoiling the holiday for many innocent people, which had a knock on impact on the ports that would allow us in ( two did not). Again on the Brit theme, previous to Dubai you could sit on steamer or sunbed any time and where you wished. Then along comes the towel and book brigade who seem to take delight in spreading their belongings on these facilities and then wandering off for the best part of the day again spoiling things for others. While it was not a problem for the more experienced cruisers or those with some gumption who removed the items, if they wanted to rest, others understandably avoided such confrontations (as did the deck staff) ! To conclude, would we recommend Cunard, most certainly as this cruise not only met our expectations but far surpassed them. The QM2 is undoubtedly a special ship, although I accept it is not every ones cup of tea. As we stated at the beginning, this is what we found on that occasion and we have no ‘axe to grind’ or flag to fly as we have used about 7 cruise lines over recent years and they are all different, as we all are, Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
We thoroughly enjoyed our World Voyage. Hamburg-Hamburg from 8th January - 12 May 2016. The cruise lasted 125 days, The service was excellent.. The crew were fantastic and we would definitely repeat a cruise with Cunard. We planned this ... Read More
We thoroughly enjoyed our World Voyage. Hamburg-Hamburg from 8th January - 12 May 2016. The cruise lasted 125 days, The service was excellent.. The crew were fantastic and we would definitely repeat a cruise with Cunard. We planned this cruise 12 months in advance and did 5 overland tours plus the normal stops. A voyage like this is really what you personally put into it. We did a lot of research on the destinations we would be visiting. We have cruised many times before so yes, we are experienced travelers. We both joined in a lot of sport activities on the ship and really enjoyed the possibilities offered. Our Cabin was most comfortable. We travelled as a retired couple (65). This voyage gave us the possibility of visiting many destinations that were still on our bucket list and get a good impression of whether we wanted to return. Which was our highlight? There were many highlights:. Namibia, Africa, Australia, China, Japan, The Lost city of Petra in Jordan, Malta. So many wonderful destinations. Thank you Cunard and thank you to all members to the Queen Elizabeth for making this an unforgettable "One in a Lifetime Experience" Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
“Around the world in 80 days…” goes the song. However, it took Holland America’s (HAL) ms. Amsterdam 115 glorious days to circumnavigate the globe on our Grand World Voyage 2016. What an amazing voyage it was! We visited 24 ... Read More
“Around the world in 80 days…” goes the song. However, it took Holland America’s (HAL) ms. Amsterdam 115 glorious days to circumnavigate the globe on our Grand World Voyage 2016. What an amazing voyage it was! We visited 24 countries and 41 ports; some were overnight stays. People ask us how we could stay on a ship that long. I reply that we loved every minute and that we hope to do it again soon. We were never bored or sea sick and learned so much about the history and culture of the places visited. It many ways, the cruise changed our thinking on a variety of subjects. For most passengers, this was their fourth or fifth+ HAL Grand World Cruise. For us, it was our first Grand World Cruise. The staff told us that this particular Grand World Cruise sailing had the youngest-aged passengers. One tyke celebrated his first birthday while on board the entire voyage. One thousand fifty passengers including 10 children boarded the ship in Fort Lauderdale. Seven hundred fifty passengers took the entire voyage. Other passengers joined the voyage for segments. Most passengers were Americans, many were Floridians but there were plenty of Canadians and Australians onboard plus other nationalities. Our exciting cruise began January 5, returning April 29, 2016 to and from Fort Lauderdale. Friends of ours encouraged us to go on this cruise with them. Unfortunately, they were unable to go. Right from embarkation, things went well. Within 20 minutes, from the time of our arrival at the pier, we were on the ship. Near the gangway, Pande our Assistant Maitre ’D from our HAL Grand Asia Pacific 2014 Cruise greeted passengers and recognized us. He instructed a steward to carry our hand luggage and escort us to our cabin. Wow! It made us feel like family. Our former Cruise Director, Gene Young from HAL Grand Voyage ’14 was also stationed at the gangway. He, also, recognized us immediately. It was wonderful to have him as our Cruise Director for this cruise, too. I wonder when the man sleeps. He was involved on board in so many ways. Our mid-ship ocean-view stateroom, # 2598 was in a very stable position on the ship. The cabin itself was bright, comfortable and contained sufficient storage space for all our belongings. The A/C and plumbing worked well throughout the entire cruise. Unfortunately, stateroom TVs were still not interactive so we often had to visit the Front Desk to get our statements printed. For my husband, though, the lack of a mini-fridge in our cabin was a big problem. He needed to visit the medical office often to retrieve his medication that needed refrigeration. Another problem was early morning (5-5:30 AM) noise from a crew member working on open deck 3 that frequently disturbed our sleep. Many other guests on our deck complained about this noise. All the stateroom passageways are bright and lined with Dutch maritime art; Deck 1 has Dutch floral art works gracing its walls. The public areas of the ship were all well appointed and quite attractive. The floral arrangements are stunning. However, the very comfortable couches in the Queen’s Lounge (theater) are lower than the upholstered chairs making it difficult viewing the performers on stage while sitting on the couches. Uneven temperatures in certain areas of the ship especially in the Queen’s Lounge made carrying a sweater a necessity. Still another concern was the slow speed of the internet connection. We waited until we reached shore to access thee Internet. The ship does need some updating and perhaps will go in for refurbishment soon. This in no way detracted from our enjoyment. The ship was well maintained and always clean. Everyone was comfortable navigating this mid-sized ship, which was the perfect size for entering smaller foreign ports. The food and service in the Main Dining Room were wonderful. We had fabulous meals nightly especially on Gala Nights. On the off chance that nothing on the menu was appealing, we could choose Jumbo Shrimp Cocktail, steak, chicken or salmon as alternatives. Although I always am pleased with food and service on HAL ships, on Grand & Grand World Cruises they are superior. Our Early Seating MDR servers Gede & Berry were professional, personable and efficient, anticipating our needs and checking to see that everything was fine with our meals. My husband received all his Special Request Meals in a timely fashion. Gede made a point of bringing the next day’s menus to him as soon as they became available. In fact, the entire MDR staff did a terrific job daily getting his Special Request Meals correct. Nestor Malsi, our wine steward, brought our glasses of red wine at our table usually before we even arrived. He always had time to chat with us nightly. After dinner, I enjoyed stopping by the cheerful door attendant, Woko’s station. He always remembered my name and knew which after dinner treat I wanted before exiting the MDR. I cannot say enough about how helpful the HAL staff was in general. All the crew on board Grand & World Voyages are hand picked by HAL. We did dine several times in the two specialty restaurants, The Canaletto & the Pinnacle Grill. The levels of service there were always excellent as were the food. The Lido Café food was good, too and we always ate at least breakfast there. In the Lido, wait staff members Imam and Supraman would often assist us in locating a table, brought us the Times Digest daily and remembered our preference for beverages. They were so professional, friendly and efficient. We always looked forward to our daily conversations with them. Many times, I enjoyed the Lido Restaurant’s wonderful sushi station at lunchtime. Another fun place to eat is poolside at the Dive In. The fries there are extra delicious; so are the several choices of hot dogs and burgers. Many other things made the voyage so special. On Gala Nights, the MDR was festooned with colorful balloons, London-themed umbrellas, paper lanterns, banners, flags or other festive decorations. On some themed nights depending on the theme, we received Panama or Bowler hats, beautiful masks or leis to wear and keep. On other Gala evenings, we received Valentine chocolates, long stemmed roses or maracas. The servers dressed in festive attire for the theme nights, as did many of the passengers. On many Gala nights, passengers received gifts in their staterooms such as: a nylon travel bag, a canvas boat bag with matching toiletry bag filled with travel essentials, a moleskin travel journal, a signed paperback travel book, Tiffany & Co HAL ceramic box, HAL Crystal Candle Holder, a Royal Goedewaagen Plate highlighting the itinerary and a travel wallet. Plus, at the Dinners with the Captain in the Pinnacle Grill, each passenger sailing the entire cruise received distinctive salt & pepper shakers reminiscent of those given on HAL very first World Voyage. On our night, we were kindly invited to sit at the Captain’s Table along with his lovely wife, Karen and two Senior Officers. The ms. Amsterdam is an older ship but quite seaworthy and is especially stable for the type of cruising that she does. Most days I forgot that I was even on a ship since the seas were so calm. Our “Storm Dodger” Captain Jonathan was expert at avoiding high winds and storms thus earning his nickname. I always felt completely safe under his leadership. Captain Jonathan & his wife were most charming, affable and professional as were all the Senior Officers. On Grand and Grand World Voyages, Grand Dollars can be earned by participating in on board activities. By the end of the cruise, we had earned over 800 dollars to spend on various items. Activities on board were varied. Daily Tai Chi classes kept us busy. Trivia was also quite popular as was Arts & Crafts, computer classes, bridge and pool games. We attended most of the lecture series on Sea Days. I specially enjoyed the talks on space, various cultures and photography. We were invited to attend several wine tasting events throughout the voyage. We loved the many Culinary Arts Demonstrations and Tasting classes, too. I hope that we can duplicate the dishes served using the many recipe cards we received. The movies on board were up to date and I watched a few of them. On Location Guide Barbara Heanni and Nyron Peters, from the Shore Excursion Staff gave detailed talks about Things to See & Do in port. These ship talks on the ports of call were current and quite useful. How nice that HAL has someone on board to help passengers who wish to go sightseeing independently. At many ports, there was a complimentary shuttle service to the center of town or to a nearby mall. Several times, we used this service. The main reason I took this cruise was the itinerary. It was so exciting to transit the Suez Canal for the first time. We have cruised through the Panama Canal several times previously and always enjoy the experience. One personal highlight for us was our one night’s stay in an idyllic over water thatched-roofed bungalow in Tahiti at the Hilton Moorea Lagoon Resort & Spa. A Welcome drink at reception, plus a bottle of champagne and wine along with fruit and snacks awaited us in our bungalow. We had a wonderful day swimming in the clear, aquamarine shallow waters of the lagoon, enjoying the beautiful views of the stunning mountains, strolling the white coral sandy beach and relaxing in the hammocks. An extravagant dinner buffet with a complimentary bottle of wine followed by a spectacular floorshow ending with an outdoor fire-eaters performance completed the magical day for us. At night, we viewed the lighted lagoon beneath us through the cutout window in the floor of our bungalow. After a sumptuous breakfast buffet with live entertainment the next morning, we took a walking tour of the facility and enjoyed the beautiful pool before we rejoined our ship at its next port, Moorea. It was a dream come true for both of us. Equally special were our visit to Petra and Wadi Rum in Aqaba, Jordan, Chinqua Terra in Livorno, Italy and Dubai, UAE. Muscat and Salalah, Oman were other new ports for us and quite interesting. Everyone asks which our favorite port was and we reply whichever port we are visiting at the time. However, while we were in Israel, we were especially moved while exploring all the biblical sights in Haifa and Ashdod. Almost all of our shore excursions were sponsored by the ship and they were worthwhile, enjoyable and educational. We did independent sightseeing in Sydney and in Jakarta since we had previously explored those ports extensively. There were so many memorable highlights during our World Cruise onboard the ms. Amsterdam. One was the very elaborate fun-under-the-setting-sun Australia Beach Party where sand covered the Lido Magrodome pool area. Bondi Beach lifeguards came on board along with Australia‘s most sort after 6-piece band, Hipnosis. There were huge beach balls, surfboards, beach chairs, water games and complimentary tropical drinks and food to add to the beach theme. What Fun! The extra-special décor of the 1001 Arabian Sights themed pool deck party set the tone for another wonderful evening. The Zany April Fool’s Day Costume Party in the Crow’s Nest was hilarious, while the elaborate Black & Silver Ball in the Queen’s Lounge was quite elegant. The champagne Valentine’s Day Ball in the Queen’s Lounge was oh so romantic. It was fun guessing who was under the beautiful masks provided for the Masked Ball in the Queen’s Lounge, the final Gala Night of the cruise. I was looking forward to the St. Patrick’s Day Party but was surprised that no Irish music was played although there were plenty of pots of gold and other Irish decor to be found. I especially enjoyed the extravagantly presented monthly High Teas - Royal Dutch, Polynesian, Indonesian and Middle Eastern. I photographed each of the lavish displays. I wished that there were more of them. My husband especially enjoyed the Super Bowl 50 Festivities in the Queen’s Lounge. Entertainment in general was wonderful and quite diverse. The Bon Voyage Sail-Away Fest was a great way to begin the voyage. We had complimentary drinks, snacks and live music with the wonderful HAL orchestra. A similar Sail Away Party occurred on our departure from Sydney. After dinner each night, we enjoyed listening to the very personable Debby Bacon in the Piano Bar. One night, her husband, Ron joined her for a performance and it was such fun for everyone. Whenever we could, we also found time to listen to the beautiful music in the Exploration Lounge performed by Adagio, Attila and David from Hungary. The talented HAL Singers and Dancers performed ten different shows and all were well paced and entertaining. One of my favorite Queen’s Lounge performances was the steel drum group from Trinidad, the sensational Island Magic. I even purchased their CDs. The cultural Queen’s Lounge shows in Hong Kong, Tahiti, Dubai and Spain were all colorful and memorable. Often times we had an extra theater performance, Spotlight before the main Showtime Show. The two well rehearsed Crew Indonesian and Filipino Matinee Shows were standing room only. Who knew that Nestor Malsi, our wine steward and Filipino Crew Show Organizer had such a marvelous voice? We attended and thoroughly enjoyed both shows. After so many days on the ship, we knew the entire cast of both shows, which made the shows even more entertaining. During ports of call, we had the opportunity: to ride a camel, an elephant, a mule and horse, swim with stingrays and dolphins and see penguins in their enclosure. We had close encounters with wild monkeys, kangaroos, emus & koalas. In Singapore, we went on a Night Safari and saw many nocturnal animals in their natural habitats. On board, there were dance lessons, cultural emergence activities plus didgeridoo, ukulele and belly dancing lessons. I learned enough foreign phrases to get along in the various countries visited. I tasted exotic foods from many different countries. It is an experience that I will never forget. Yes, it took plenty of preparation and planning before a cruise of this length. Imagine, though, touring the world and only unpacking once! No air flights even were involved since we live in Florida. How wonderful that our price included the shipping of our four large suitcases ahead of time! Gratuities were also included. We received excellent complimentary laundry service since we are Four Star Mariners. We made some wonderful new friends that we hope to see again on future HAL cruises. A cruise of this length may not be for everyone but it was a dream of a lifetime for us. We are still enjoying our memories when we watch our ship videos and look through our candid ship photos and photo albums. We were so pleased with the itinerary, the food, the accommodations and the service. Our next HAL cruise will be on the new ms. Koningsdam later this year. Read Less
Sail Date January 2016

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