7 Cruise & Maritime Voyages Marco Polo Entertainment Cruise Reviews

This was my fourth cruise with CMV but my first on the Marco Polo, I had heard so much about this ship from friends who had been on its 50th Anniversary Cruise up the St Lawrence. I must admit I had heard bad reports as well as good ... Read More
This was my fourth cruise with CMV but my first on the Marco Polo, I had heard so much about this ship from friends who had been on its 50th Anniversary Cruise up the St Lawrence. I must admit I had heard bad reports as well as good reports about this ship but my own findings were that it has a charm all of its own and a very friendly dedicated crew. The reason I choose a cruise is to see different places and experience different cultures, this cruise to Greenland really was an amazing experience but could have been better if the quality of the lecturers had been more consistent. The difference that onboard lecturers can make to a cruise is more than significant and on this cruise the ability and relevant knowledge of the lecturers varied to the extreme. The main lecturer was Prof. Eric McVicar, who when I looked him up on the internet was described by one University as "an Internationally recognised expert on Arctic cultures and ecology". This was certainly the case, every lecture he gave was pertinent and relevant to the destinations visited. His lectures were delivered in an exceptionally professional manner and were highly informative, as well as being delivered with more than a touch of humour. Strangely enough my friends who had been on the CMV Anniversary Cruise had also commented on the brilliant lecturer they had encountered, the same Prof. Eric McVicar. In all my years of cruising he is the first lecturer I have ever come across who has given two evening shows in the show lounge followed by a question and answer session and to get into his lectures you had to arrive very early to ensure getting a seat. CMV has done well to secure a lecturer of this standing. We had the privilege of having lunch with him on a couple of occasions during which he was asked by one passenger "Do you also lecture in the Antarctic?" To which he replied he only lectured in places where he felt that he was suitably qualified and had sufficient knowledge to answer questions, a point which other lecturers should take on board and he was definitely the best lecturer I have come across in my years of cruising. The second lecturer was Sue Walsh who was described as a wildlife expert, I could find no references to her on the internet. Rather than describe her as a wildlife expert i would say a more apt description would be amateur bird watcher, her lectures were delivered in a monotonous patronising manner more like a bored primary school teacher with a class of 8 year olds. Her wildlife knowledge expired after three lectures, included in one was a reference that one needn't worry about Arctic mosquitoes as they did not carry malaria, thankfully Prof. McVicar subsequently informed us that although they were free of malaria they did cause encephalitis and that Arctic Blackfly could cause blackfly fever and therefore taking precautions to avoid insect bites was essential. Both insects were encountered during the trip so it shows a little knowledge is a very dangerous thing! After running out of wildlife information Sue treated us to 10 hints on how to live longer and another on ways to make ourselves more self asserted. Considering the average age of the passengers and the fact that many of us were retired professionals, University Professors, Doctors and Teachers these lectures were extremely patronising. Another of her lectures was titled Chickens in Colorado, what on earth that had to do with the Arctic God only knows! Definitely the worst lecturer I have ever come across and I was not the only one who was of this view, as one lady who farmed reindeer said that she talked "a right load of crap". The third lecturer was more of an interest subject rather than about the cruise destinations, Ian was a photographer whose hints on how to achieve excellent photographs with even the most basic equipment such as a phone camera were very good, however his last two lectures were his holiday photographs taken on a pilgrimage following the children of Israel out of Egypt, considering the religious diversity of the passengers these two lectures were not really appropriate on such a cruise. On the other entertainment side the comedians were dire but there was a real treat with Tenor Laurence Robinson who not only was a delight to listen to but was a great entertainer to boot by involving the audience in an extremely entertaining and humerous manner, top marks to Laurence. The ship's show team and Cruise Director Jonathan Dulson put every ounce of effort and enthusiasm into their performances, and considering the small size of the ship and stage this was no mean feat. The adult only feature of the CMV cruises I have been on has always been a factor in deciding which cruises we go on and no doubt we shall return to CMV when we see a cruise to destinations which we find interesting, hopefully in the case of Canada we will again have the delight of Prof. McVicar's lectures. The cabin we had on the ship was an outside cabin with twin beds, although small was comfortable and the steward was outstandingly attentive to all our needs and requirements. Port and short excursions - we do not go on many excursions as we prefer to explore ourselves and see how the local populations live and work, in the case of Iceland however it is obvious that most of those involved in tourism are also involved in what may be termed extortion and daylight robbery, suggest to anyone going ashore in Reykjavik that they take a packed lunch and walk into town and keep their hands in their pockets and go to the toilet before you go in as it will cost you £2.50 (they do take credit and debit cards at the toilet). As always the food was good wholesome fare, don't expect lobsters and caviar at CMV's prices but you certainly won't go hungry and the variety of food and the service cannot be criticised. Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
was not sure bout cruiseing but all ways wanted to see the fyords so we booked and set sail from hull on the mv discovery and it was great got back rebooked on the azores again no complaints anoter great cruise and so on to our our third ... Read More
was not sure bout cruiseing but all ways wanted to see the fyords so we booked and set sail from hull on the mv discovery and it was great got back rebooked on the azores again no complaints anoter great cruise and so on to our our third cruise with cmv first on the marco polo but all ready booked for next year on mp from hull again its a great ship the food was brill and all the staff were great the ship was kept clean and our cabin was nice and clean all our shore trips were brill my partner loves flam will be back there next year like the smaller ships and adult only hope the staff are back next year on her and the craft lady as well keep up the good work cmv and see you all again next year would recomend cmv to any body Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
I wanted to take the opportunity to go down the river Amazon and visit some of the Caribbean islands. I stayed in a B & B in Bristol the night before embarkation. Managed to have a look round Bristol (my first time there) must go back ... Read More
I wanted to take the opportunity to go down the river Amazon and visit some of the Caribbean islands. I stayed in a B & B in Bristol the night before embarkation. Managed to have a look round Bristol (my first time there) must go back for a few days sometime soon. The embarkation was a bit of a nightmare, having arrived as requested at 4.00 pm we were herded into a hanger and it took several hours before we were called. However, once on board found our cabin and luggage arrived soon after. The dining was 'free seating' which is not to my liking but this only happened on a few occasions. The ship may have looked a little worn round the edges but it was perfectly serviceable and kept scrupulously clean, staff were constantly cleaning. My inside cabin was at the pointy end and so I felt every bump and swell but fortunately I quite liked that. We had a problem with the shower and it was remedied within an hour or so. Similarly the sink leaked and a new waste was fitted the next day. Dining - I have very fond memories of the food, I ate far too much but it was hard not to. there was a very good selection of food at every sitting. You would be hard put to go hungry. I did not try any of the entertainment so cannot comment. The ports and shore excursions were well planned and when disembarkation was problematic because of shore difficulties the crew always came up trumps by making steps to add to the jetty or boats, nothing was too much for them. Drinks on board were very reasonable. Best thing that made the cruise pleasurable were the staff. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
wanted away for Christmas and New Year My wife Myself her Sister and Friend aged between 60 and 73 having been on larger ships before we were a little unsure of the Marco Polo But right from the start at least you knew your ... Read More
wanted away for Christmas and New Year My wife Myself her Sister and Friend aged between 60 and 73 having been on larger ships before we were a little unsure of the Marco Polo But right from the start at least you knew your way around Boarding not bad from arriving at quay to our rooms about 40 minutes which we thought normal nice touch mulled wine handed round while we waited Cabin small but functional with good shower , Cabin Steward excellent nothing was a problem ,Every thing was spotless (but too many full length mirrors ,will have to diet) plenty of variety at mealtime with the waiter and wine waiter at our table good fun and always smiling Shows were good and there were a variety of talks lectures and quizzes every day there also were art and craft classes everyday . this suited us as my wife and sister liked the lectures their friend loved all the arts and crafts and I had my quizzes So we always had something to talk about when we met we did not go on many excursions as we had been to most of the places before but the ship anchored off Maderia to bring in the New Year and the firework display was fantastic only downside was that we had to wait for a couple of hours to disembark but fore by that i would recommend the Marco Polo if you want a small pleasant ship without great shopping Malls or Climbing Frames that is easy to get around and give good value for money Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
Just came back from a fantastic short trip around Ireland on the marco polo, Ive cruised with 4 different lines before and marco polo is by far my favourite. It really does offer a unique experience that you never get on the more modern ... Read More
Just came back from a fantastic short trip around Ireland on the marco polo, Ive cruised with 4 different lines before and marco polo is by far my favourite. It really does offer a unique experience that you never get on the more modern cruise ship so anyone with any interest in ships at all will enjoy. Staff we found very helpful and irina our cabin stewardess was excellent. We enjoyed the itinerary and embarkation and disembarkation where well organised. Ships was clean and tidy with beautiful open decks and excellent food in the main restaurant and they offer lots of buy one get one free offers which made it excellent value for money. The only slight down side was the queues in the bistro and if your going for a long cruise over say 2 weeks you might struggle to fill your days as it doesn’t have the amount of entertainment a mega cruise ship has but that’s what makes it a unique experience. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
We wanted to see Iceland and the Northern lights. After spending 22 years in the Royal Navy I was keen to see what life was like on the 'other side'. My wife was keen to experience life at sea as most of her family were ... Read More
We wanted to see Iceland and the Northern lights. After spending 22 years in the Royal Navy I was keen to see what life was like on the 'other side'. My wife was keen to experience life at sea as most of her family were seafaring folk. I was so pleased to see that the Marco Polo was a 'proper' ship, sturdy and seaworthy. Unlike the modern cruise liners which look like floating tin hotels. The crew were exceptional, professional and friendly. Show standards were good and the food excellent. Lectures were interesting and communication between crew and passengers was also good. Safety on board was, as you would expect, of a high standard with well rehearsed drills. Cleanliness was superb especially considering the age of the old girl. Medical team was highly professional sorting out my pulled shoulder muscle in double quick time. Highly recommended. We will be back. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
be very careful when you select all inclusive with Cruise and Maritime as it is not what it says.Firstly I am a beer drinker,and the only draught beer was german lager.If you wanted bitter or any other beer they only had cans and ... Read More
be very careful when you select all inclusive with Cruise and Maritime as it is not what it says.Firstly I am a beer drinker,and the only draught beer was german lager.If you wanted bitter or any other beer they only had cans and bottles,which were NOT inclusive,but you had to pay between £3 and £4 for them. Also the water in your room was not included (£2.20) a bottle,and if you wanted a coffee from the bar you had to pay for that too ! The food in the bar could have been better if it was hot,more often than not it was only warm. The best food was from the service on deck 8 during the lunch hour. The entertainment apart from the excellent show team,consisted mainly of quizes,not enough game shows etc. The staff,although very competent,could have been more friendly. The cabins,although small,were kept very clean and tidy. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
Marco Polo Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.0 3.7
Dining 3.0 3.5
Entertainment 3.0 3.6
Public Rooms 4.0 3.8
Fitness Recreation 3.0 3.2
Family 1.0 3.2
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.3
Enrichment 4.0 3.2
Service 4.0 3.9
Value For Money 5.0 3.6
Rates 4.0 3.6

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