15 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2016
We have been on a couple of cruises and were some what concerned when reading reviews before we travelled on 1st March from Tilbury but were very satisfied taking account of the costs and destinations travelled too. Iceland is expensive ... Read More
We have been on a couple of cruises and were some what concerned when reading reviews before we travelled on 1st March from Tilbury but were very satisfied taking account of the costs and destinations travelled too. Iceland is expensive so the cruise offered a relatively inexpensive way to travel, enjoying good food and good company as well as a good crew who were friendly, polite and accommodating. We never felt pressured into buying drinks ( they had a range of packages for alcoholic and non alcoholic drinks but also left you if you declined) similarly they did not oversell any trips or on board activities (of which there was a variety of options) - this has not always been our experience on other ships. We also felt the on board prices and tipping rate were very good. Facilities especially inside cabin was spacious and very clean. The shower was superb- lots of hot water and good pressure. Toilet did fail to flush on one day but this was rectified without fuss. Food and service in restaurants good ( only soup in evening was not always hot) but this aside we had access to hot drinks (free) from waking to late evening and we could go either to be served or help ourselves to food across the day so we didn't go hungry. We enjoyed having days at sea and felt very safe in the hands of the Captain who saw this as his priority -we did have a rough day and we felt that the way the crew informed and supported passengers was excellent. So stop worrying go with CMV and see the places they travel too at a price that won't break the bank Read Less
24 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2016
This was our first cruise so we have nothing to compare it with but were a bit wary given some of the bad reviews this ship and company get. Tilbury is an odd port and probably needed refurbishment 40 years ago, it still does and after ... Read More
This was our first cruise so we have nothing to compare it with but were a bit wary given some of the bad reviews this ship and company get. Tilbury is an odd port and probably needed refurbishment 40 years ago, it still does and after a bit of chaos at the long term car park the embarkation process was very efficient. From starting the process to boarding the ship and being shown straight to our cabin was no more than 15 minutes. The meet and greet on board was good and within minutes we had dropped out hand luggage off and were free to explore. The ship is not huge, which appealed to us. Everything was immaculate and there was constant cleaning and polishing going on throughout the entire voyage, along with window cleaning and painting whenever the ship was in port. There are staff dispensing anti-bac at all times in every place food is served. There were various activities for most sea days, quizzes, art, a choir and entertainment. We didn't go to much of the 'on stage' entertainment as it wasn't our style (singing and dancing) but there is also an excellent resident pianist who plays regularly in one of the smaller bars and a fantastic piano and violin duet who played 3 or 4 times a day in one of the other bars, they were stunning. Other people enjoyed the main entertainment so there was a variety of styles to suit taste. The guest cabaret (comedy and music) was very old hat, Frank Spencer impressions and lots of jokes around impotence, some people found him funny, he was a better singer than comedian. Some of the guest lectures were interesting, a bit more variety would have been good. The food was very good, always a choice of self serve or restaurant. While occasionally the soup wasn't hot there was always a good choice, it was always well presented and served with a smile. I am veggie and was always well catered for with a choice of menu. While the breakfast staff were not always overly cheerful or interactive the evening dinner service was good humoured, professional and always served with beaming smiles. Our waiter, Thant, remembered our particular likes and dislikes and was always ready to change anything that wasn't to someone's liking (eg blue cheese on the cheese and biscuits) and remembered this for next time. Portion sizes were very good, not excessive but more than adequate. Lunch was 3 courses, though staff were also happy to just do the soup if requested, 3 courses were not compulsory (!) dinner was a minimum of 5 courses with fresh pizza available 12-6 and afternoon tea 3.30-4.30 plus late night snacks handed around in all bars around 11/11.30. I'm sure no-one could possibly go hungry. Drinks are very reasonable, there is a drinks package at £17pp per night but bar prices are normal, fairly cheap, pub prices. Wine packages are offered a few days into the trip for those who don't want the full drinks package. We just bought drinks as we went along and had a very reasonable bill at the end of the trip. Shore excursions are expensive, in most places we just did our own thing. Amsterdam was an easy walk from port to city centre and there were buses for the less mobile. In the Faroe Islands we did a trip which was good but at £37 expensive for 2.5 hours. In Iceland we did our own thing, there was a port shuttle available at £12 but a local bus is £6 return and went every 20 minutes. In Orkney there was a free shuttle provided locally and we were greeted by Tourist Info staff, the whole town was geared up for our visit (even the local vicar was sat in the Cathedral on his laptop in case anyone wanted a chat, there were welcome signs in shops) and we were "piped off' by a bagpipe and drum band. Disembarkment was a little chaotic but not unreasonable for getting 1,200 people and their luggage off a ship. The staff were very friendly, the Captain informative and also funny. We had one pretty rough sea day as we left Iceland when most activities were cancelled and we were catching wine glasses and fellow passengers as they slid around the ship. Listening to some fellow passengers whinging and wining as we left the ship it was hard to believe we had been on the same cruise, while I'm sure there will have been some genuine mishaps or problems some people just seemed to be looking for problems "there wasn't even a mint on our pillow at night" was one person's moan about why he would never use CMV again... Read Less
21 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2016
Our 2nd cruise with CMV, the 1st was on the Marco Polo. This ship is bigger but not too big. It seems as dated as the MP but is still comfortable enough. This cruise was to Iceland (for overnight), taking in Amsterdam, Faroes Islands, and ... Read More
Our 2nd cruise with CMV, the 1st was on the Marco Polo. This ship is bigger but not too big. It seems as dated as the MP but is still comfortable enough. This cruise was to Iceland (for overnight), taking in Amsterdam, Faroes Islands, and Kirkwall in Orkney. Amsterdam, I am convinced, is put on the schedule as a refuelling and re-provisioning stop. Must be cheaper to refuel in Holland than UK, why else would the stop be for only half a day? (Tip: many excursions can be booked cheaper with local tour operators, either online or when getting off the ship - Canal cruise for example). The ship itself is comfortable. We were upgrade from deck 5 to deck 7 when out tickets came through and that was a great bonus. Outside superior twin - queen size bed. The crew work hard to keep the ship clean and tidy, so no complaints there. What was annoying was only half of the lifts were in use, and a lot of passengers had mobility issues, so there were times when lifts were very congested. The staircases were the steepest and had the narrowest treads that I have ever seen on a ship. We used the buffet restaurant for breakfast, lunch and occasionally, afternoon tea. The food was typical buffet fare, with an egg/omelette station in the morning, and a pizza station/carvery lunchtime. Finding a table, when its busy, can be a bit of hassle, especially as some passengers seem to be reluctant to socialise, and make it plain they do not want strangers sitting in the spare seats at 'their' table. We dined in the Waldorf in the evenings and the food was very good. Portions seemed small, but after 5 courses we realised that if they had been larger then we would have been over-stuffed. The waiter we had, Joe, was excellent. Very attentive, helpful, and good fun without being 'in your face'. Want an extra ice-cream - no problem. Changed your mind when you see the main course? - no problem. we even enjoyed the dressing up for dinner (a first for us). All in all it was a very enjoyable experience. As is often the case on ships, there never seems to be enough seats in the bars, or rather the bars you want to be in at that precise moment. Especially true after the 2nd sitting in the evening. Prices in the bars are pretty good. There is a drinks package (£17 per person per day - must apply to whole party). We also discovered that there is a 'coffee' package available (£24.99 for 20 coffees - usually price £1.80 each). We like a cappuccino so took this offer, but be warned - only the Captains Club Bar seemed to be able to make a decent one. The Entertainment! Well, they say you can't please everyone, and that is true here. There is the usual daytime/evening fare of quizzes,game shows and silly games (bean bag bowls) to take part in. These are run by young people who seem not to understand the likes of many of the mature passengers and end up talking down to them. Its a bit like Hi-De-Hi on the high seas, but without the imagination. Then there are the guest acts. These are much better, one was a comedian who was famous on ITV in the 1970's. He was still pretty good, even if showing his age. There was a very good pianist and an equally good violinist playing at various places on the ship. Then we have the Show Team. The best I can say for them was they were enthusiastic. Sadly they looked like they were barely out of stage school. Choreography was poor, dancer's balance was poor, and the routines looked like they were made up in the school playground. This was a shame, as we watched two shows, one based upon ABBA and he other on the 1960's. But they put energy into everything. The saving grace was the "Magellan Orchestra", a 6-piece group who were brilliant. Last and sadly in my opinion, least, we have the singers. John (also the cruise director), Brett, and Raul. Not the Three Tenors, nor even the Three Fivers. Of the three, Raul was probably the best. Certainly when on his own he could pull off some nice sounds as long as he stuck to the songs that suited him. Brett was just a bit too Girlie for my liking, and sung everything in a voice that makes Katherine Jenkins sound butch. Yes he was that bad. And even worse when hosting the games/quizzes ("i'm not really sure how you pronounce PRONOUNCE"). And then John. As cruise director he should stick to organising and not participating. He was full of himself. He sang backing to Raul's "Memories are made of this" so loud that he drowned Raul. His vocal range was poor and he often missed words out, hit bum notes, and constantly kept up banter with his fellow singers during the intro/instrumental breaks, sharing jokes with them, rather than the audience. And the duo - Excelsior. Arrrgh! He played keyboards (they also had a backing track so that was pointless) and she murdered songs. Every song, whether rock, latin, or ballad, was delivered in a monotone voice. I've made it sound bad, but there were some good moments in the entertainment, just not enough of them. The Casino. This is located next to The Captains Club Bar. There is one Roulette Wheel and one card table and loads of slot machines. These are open to the general walkway between Captain Club and the other bars/internet area/Jade Spa and the stairs down to Waldorf. This means there is no atmosphere whatsoever, made worse by the two croupiers who never smile, never speak and just look like they would rather be somewhere else. Another thing that lets CMV and the Magellan down, is the organisation side of things. Embarkation went fine. Could not fault it. Arrived at our given time slot. Got signed in, given cruise card, taken on board, all within about 10 minutes. Perfect. Lifeboat Drill. I pray they never have to carry this out for real. What a shambles. Disembarkation wasn't too bad. Passengers are asked to be out of their cabins by 7:00. There is a choice. You can take your own bags ashore and therefore disembark at the earliest moment. Bags can be left in Scotts Bar at your own risk while you have breakfast. Or you wait your turn while they call passengers by luggage label colour. Then its collect your cases and follow the signs. Trouble is, everyone just wants to get off as soon as possible, so any slight hold up (they called the "coach to Victoria" passenger ahead of another group because the car park was getting blocked, and that annoyed a lot of impatient passengers. Trying to find out anything about the ports visited, unless booked on a ships tour, is like pulling teeth, either they do not know, or they are reluctant to help. Anyway, I know this might all sound a little negative, but my wife and I really did enjoy our cruise. The ship was clean, the cabin comfortable, the food good, we went to places that we wanted to go to, and we met some great people. Overall it was good value for money. Read Less
14 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2016
Our departure from Tilbury was pretty chaotic. We travelled to the ship on their coach from London Coach Station and the last quarter of a mile took about 90 mins. The ship had arrived late from their previous cruise (the Canaries I ... Read More
Our departure from Tilbury was pretty chaotic. We travelled to the ship on their coach from London Coach Station and the last quarter of a mile took about 90 mins. The ship had arrived late from their previous cruise (the Canaries I think), because of terrible weather and so embarkation was backing up. However when we eventually arrived at the terminal everything was done speedily. Once aboard we were impressed by the size and layout of our sea view cabin on deck 4 and the speed with which our luggage was delivered. This was a 6 week cruise to the Canaries, the amazon, West Indies and The Azores. This was our view of the Ship. FOOD. Excellent. We had early dining (6.15pm). There were five courses which were well cooked and well presented. As well as the days main meals (usually about 5 options) there was always Salmon fillet and breast of chicken available. The waiters were lovely and most helpful. We were on a table of 8 and two of them were quite specific about their requirements. The waiters had no problem with this. There was a large buffet available for those who preferred less formal dining. Breakfast and lunch could be in the dining rooms or the buffet and there was a wide selection. Staff were most pleasant and helpful. There was also an outside buffet with burgers, sausage, chips for people who preferred 'fast food' and there was a pizza bar in the buffet. Ice cream was always available. ENTERTAINMENT. I thought that the entertainment was excellent. The main show had a troupe of dancers, mostly from the Ukraine, who were extremely talented and performed in a huge variety of shows over the 42 days of the cruise. The Magellan Orchestra (more of a band really) were again Eastern European and were extremely talented. The bandleader played trumpet and was accompanied by a saxophone, lead and base guitar, drummer and keyboard player. They leant towards modern jazz but could play everything else as well. There was also a concert pianist, a pianist and violinist duo, a Filipino duo who sang and played 'easy listening' for dancing and seven vocalists who did the shows, some late night entertainment and ran the quizzes, Mr & Mrs etc. Mostly they were very good singers and they were certainly very hard working. Several other entertainers joined, did a few performances and left at the next port of call. Because of the length of the cruise there were a lot of other activities to keep passengers occupied and I (together with 30 others) learned to play five chords on a ukulele and performed 12 songs at the end of the cruise for a large and appreciative audience. My wife and I also joined the choir and again put on a show at the end. There was also handicraft, Bridge etc. There were some excellent lectures during the day and they were well attended. FITNESS. That was a bit of a disappointment. They gym was well stocked but too small. There were aerobics, pilates and/or yoga on sea days but they were mostly put on by the dancers (who were extremely fit but not fitness instructors) and it was a bit of a mess with no proper venue for them to take place. PORT EXCURSIONS. I thought they were very good and reasonably priced compared to other cruises I have been on. In most of the ports we called at it was easy to get five or six in a minibus and have the same trip for far less. Because this was January in the Atlantic, we had some periods of very stormy weather and on about five of the days those of us on the lower decks with sea views had our windows covered in steel plates. Personally I think that was a sensible precaution. We had to stay overnight in one port because the loading gear had failed and they could not raise the tender back into position. We left another port early to get ahead of a storm that was forecast but again I thought that was sensible. Most of the people on the ship were retired and I would imagine that the average age was in the late 60's (I am 71). I got the feeling that there were some people on the ship who would never travel with the company again and some who had booked their next trip with them. Myself and my wife would have no qualms about another cruise with this cruise line. Read Less
14 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2016
My sister and I loved every minute of this cruise! We found Magellan to be like a well loved holiday home - not immaculate and glitzy, but comfortable, friendly and with plenty to do. We were lucky enough to be upgraded to an outside ... Read More
My sister and I loved every minute of this cruise! We found Magellan to be like a well loved holiday home - not immaculate and glitzy, but comfortable, friendly and with plenty to do. We were lucky enough to be upgraded to an outside cabin, which was quite roomy with enough storage space for our 6 week trip (a pre-booking concern), and a great shower. The cabin steward, Viktoriya, kept it immaculate and was always available if we needed anything. We ate in the restaurant most evenings - a 5 course meal which was always varied with sensible sized portions, so that we didn't end up like house sides by the end of the cruise. Lunches we mostly ate in the bistro where there was a good variety including a live cooking and pizza station, plus a grill serving chicken, salad and burgers. It was not gourmet cooking, but it never pretended to be so, although I think some passengers expected that. During days at sea there were lots of activities to try - quizzes, dancing, choir, drama, ukelele playing, crafts, shuffleboard, table tennis, bridge - or plenty of space on deck to sunbathe and chat to fellow passengers if you preferred to do very little. In hot weather the larger pool was very refreshing for a dip. The lectures were mostly very interesting especially those about the places we were to visit, and I particularly lived Alan's talks (he is artist in residence at Durham University) about art and lots of other things he is passionate about. The entertainment team were also terrific - different shows for 42 nights is quite a feat, not to mention the cabarets, deck parties and classical recitals. They were also all extremely personable around the ship. The itinerary of the cruise was very varied with a really good mixture of ports, and being a smaller ship we seemed to be able to visit smaller ports that could not accommodate larger ships. We particularly liked Alto do Chao in the Amazon, a rather laid back sort of place, with good swimming and lots of little bars and eateries along the beach and riverbank. We would have liked a longer stay there. Devil's Island was also fascinating and thought-provoking with most of the penal buildings still in tact. I have read other reviews, including some very negative ones, and although I agree with some of the negative points, to me they were of minor importance. To us, the most important things were the sociability of the passengers, the friendliness and hard work of the crew, the itinerary and the time to do as little or as much as we wanted. We could have done it all over again!! If you go, I hope you'll enjoy it as much as we did. Read Less
11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2016
We were looking at a 50+ day cruise along the South American east coast but by the time we had made up our minds it was unavailable so our agent suggested this as an alternative. We booked in mid November and the price was very reasonable. ... Read More
We were looking at a 50+ day cruise along the South American east coast but by the time we had made up our minds it was unavailable so our agent suggested this as an alternative. We booked in mid November and the price was very reasonable. We had spent a week last summer on Marco Polo so had a fair idea of what to expect from CMV, good clean ship, good service, good food and hopefully good company. Tilbury is not an efficient port. There were huge queues of cars trying to get to the ship to drop off or park, despite the fact that we had a time slot. I don't really think this was CMV's fault. Magellan is fine, a little tired in some respects but CLEAN (this matters on cruises, especially on a long voyage). Some of the problems are directly attributable to passengers, not crew! For example, it is incredible how many passengers are of the 'rules only apply to other people' persuasion: Refusing to use hand sanitisers Filling water bottles at the water stations (I have no germs...only other people may have) Taking tea bags and coffee sachets by the handful (goodness knows why, were they planning to set up cafes?) Reserving sun beds (there were loads unused but still people attempted to bag their place and threw paddies if anyone had the temerity to remove their heaps of belongings and use the bed!) The facilities on board are good for the size of ship. The lack of self service laundry and ironing facilities is inconvenient on a long cruise but if you check details beforehand you already know this! Apparently launderettes are to be installed next season, which is good. The entertainment was pretty good, although another one or two extra visiting artistes would have been welcome with so many sea days. The on board team were very hard working and generally enthusiastic but needed the odd day off! Some of the lecturers were good, especially Louise Bonner, whose presentations were entertaining, interesting, informative and relevant to the places we were to visit. There were plenty of activities available. The service from pretty well all the staff was helpful and friendly, despite, at times, some very rude customers! We used the shore excursion programme more than we would normally have done because the Amazonian ports in particular had limited alternatives and we wanted to make the most of the time we had, it's not a place we will be likely to return to. We found the trips in general to be very well organised and the local guides informative. The cost compares well with other companies' offerings. Our cabin was a reasonable size, with adequate storage and a comfortable bed. The wall bunks do seem superfluous to requirements ( I can't really see 4 adults sharing) so they could be removed and the lighting rearranged. The food was generally well presented and tasty. We dined in the Kensington (late sitting) and always enjoyed our meals. If food was occasionally not hot enough we said so, and it was replaced. No fuss! The house wines were very palatable, and with a little persuasion we got a wine chiller on the table when required. Without being rude or bad tempered it is pretty easy to remedy any problems if you point them out! The only consistent problem on the Magellan is that it seems impossible to keep it level in any sea or river conditions. This has been mentioned in other reviews and was much discussed on board. Many passengers were ex Navy or Merchant Navy and had all sorts of theories about the cause of the problem! We concluded that the ship itself has a design flaw, as all other theories about ballast tanks, stabilisers, wind etc didn't explain the variations in list, sometimes to port, sometimes starboard, not necessarily correlating with weather conditions. This will prevent us travelling on Magellan again, as it was uncomfortable for us. Some people, although aware of the list, didn't find it a problem. We would be quite happy to try another CMV ship. Incidentally, the doctor was brilliant! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2015
Passenger handling through Tilbury was very quick and surprisingly warm for December! Our cabin was spacious, well appointed and extremely clean. Our steward was a lovely chap who was very pleasant and offered to help us at all times. Al ... Read More
Passenger handling through Tilbury was very quick and surprisingly warm for December! Our cabin was spacious, well appointed and extremely clean. Our steward was a lovely chap who was very pleasant and offered to help us at all times. Al staff encountered were extremely pleasant and so friendly. We ate in the buffet restaurant for breakfast and the Kensington restaurant for dinner. The service was superb in both. Meeting strangers for the first time at dinner is always interesting but the friendliness on this ship made it so relaxing. Our dinner and wine waiters were extremely good, making us laugh with their little jokes. The bar staff were so friendly and polite. The reception staff were so professional and helpful. We would definately go on this ship again and are looking at future cruises. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2015
cruise from tilbury 16th december for 3 nights to amsterdam and belgium arrived by public transport and small bus from station - luggage taken by porters no problems - embarkation was smooth and quick - a lot of people but the ... Read More
cruise from tilbury 16th december for 3 nights to amsterdam and belgium arrived by public transport and small bus from station - luggage taken by porters no problems - embarkation was smooth and quick - a lot of people but the line moved quickly as there were plenty of staff taking everyones details. cabin 1114 was lovely spacious with ample storage wooden hangers - cotton sheets cabin staff first class - fruit - toiletries - tea and coffee - everything - large tv reception good - had a bath with shower in it - superb nothing too much trouble for staff and always plenty of staff around if you needed anything lovely to have a balcony which we had open as it was very mild weather. enjoyed the cruise - enjoyed the food eat most times in the bistro - coffee was good and breakfast had a huge choice. in fact at every meal there was a large choice. salads were always fresh and plenty of choice of cold food as well as hot dishes. desserts good and there was also a low or no sugar options which was good. breads good and loads of different types also different types of brioches and pastries. coffee good (did not try tea) - cold drinks - ice machine and cold drinking water available. did our own thing as far as excusions were concerned and enjoyed both cities the main parts were easily accessible about a 10 or 12 minute walk embarking and disembarkation was swift and easy. porters took luggage - no hassle would have liked longer bingo sessions but other entertainment was ok although I am not one for musical shows so could not really judge. the lounges were warm and friendly and staff attentive. prices for drinks were reasonable. on par with pub prices. waiters helpful and attentive tried spa beauticians were experienced and very thorough - prices just slightly more than what i normally pay but the treatments were more thorough and took more time. also hair prices were reasonable staff in dining room and everywhere on ship were helpful, polite and hard working - seemed a lot of staff for the amount of passengers. plates were cleared from tables promptly - sometimes tables in bistro were busy but normally found a place after a few minutes. did not participate in any talks so cannot say all in all a good cruise for the amount we paid. enjoyed it and would go again Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2015
We booked a 3 night Christmas market cruise with CMV on Magellan to check out the company with an eye to longer cruises and to see how we coped with an inside cabin instead of our usual ocean view. Overall we had a good time. ... Read More
We booked a 3 night Christmas market cruise with CMV on Magellan to check out the company with an eye to longer cruises and to see how we coped with an inside cabin instead of our usual ocean view. Overall we had a good time. Embarkation was smooth we queued up at our allotted time and were moved through reasonably quickly. Our inside cabin on deck 7 aft was clean and had everything we needed plenty of hangers and draws and a very powerful shower. Shampoo and shower gel were provided in dispensers also bars of soap. There was a lot of engine noise and vibration coming into port but no noise from our neighbours or the dining room above. Our steward was excellent, friendly and kept the cabin immaculately clean. We eat in the MDR on all three nights, the the first two nights the food was really good but poor on the last night. The Buffet had a good salad selection and we enjoyed lunch and breakfast there. It is small when the outside area is not in use but as we get up early we never had a problem getting a table in the morning. Pretty much the same food is served in the dining rooms for breakfast, also buffet style, so if it was very busy passengers could always find room some where. A pizzeria operates within the buffet between lunch and dinner and the freshly made hot out of the oven pizzas were not to be missed. The main evening shows were entertaining, one was Broadway based the other featured Abba songs. What the performers lacked in talent they made up for in enthusiasm although the sound was not balanced correctly so the voices were often drowned by the music. The ship was 1 1/2 hours late arriving in Amsterdam but no announcement was made until the time we were expecting to disembark so everyone was ready with coats and cameras only to be told it would be another 90 minutes before we docked, which was frustrating. The most disappointing aspect, and one which would make us think twice about booking a longer cruise with CMV, was the wine. We are not fussy, supermarket vin plonk or homemade suits us fine, but the wine by the glass was frankly unpleasant. The choice was red, white or rose- no choice of Pinot or Chardonnay just white. We ordered one bottle which was a little better but looked and tasted as if it had been watered down. We self disembarked and we're off the ship 40 minutes before the advertised time. Not having to face a flight at the end of our holiday was a huge plus and we would certainly look at no fly cruises again. We had a great mix of fellow passengers of all ages and many first time cruisers. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2015
My friend and I was on Christmas Market Cruise to Amsterdam and Antwerp. Although this was our first time on Magellan, we took a Christmas River Cruise to Bruges year before. Overall it was good. We paid £189 each for 3 night so I ... Read More
My friend and I was on Christmas Market Cruise to Amsterdam and Antwerp. Although this was our first time on Magellan, we took a Christmas River Cruise to Bruges year before. Overall it was good. We paid £189 each for 3 night so I can't complain. I think it was 4* cruise for the price of 3*. I definitely recommend short cruise on Magellan, but if I have to stay more then 5 night I would go crazy as it's a small ship and not much to do except drinking. The Buffet had a good salad selection and we enjoyed lunch and breakfast there. We had late sitting dinner, food was bad, several choices, but all food was taking from the buffet and put on the fancy plates with a little drizzle of the sous. The only reason we were back next night that we can dress up for the evening. Show was OK, we had a good night in the club with a ok music. Drinks are very cheap, about £3.80 for a cocktail. If you a fassy and like to pay nothing but get 5* star cruise, you probably won't like this ship. If you want cheap short break from kids( I have 7 years old and it's adults only cruise), then it's great and I definitely recommend it. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2015
This was our second cruise on Magellan this year. It is an older type ship as the brochure states and is not "the all singing and dancing" type of vessel but a comfortable, clean and friendly way to cruise. Despite people ... Read More
This was our second cruise on Magellan this year. It is an older type ship as the brochure states and is not "the all singing and dancing" type of vessel but a comfortable, clean and friendly way to cruise. Despite people complaining about queueing to embark and disembark we knew that over 1000 people could not all arrive and leave the ship at the same time. We made our way to the long stay car park, our luggage was taken from the boot of our car and was waiting for us outside our cabin. Food was plentiful and very good. Our cabin 5145 was ample size and kept clean by our very efficient steward. There is something going on all day if you wish to fill your day, may not be to everyone's taste to do quizzes,bingo, deck games, bridge or craft classes. My husband did find that when we had 2 full days at sea he became a bit bored and would have liked something different to do, a view I heard from a few wives I spoke to. There are some people who complain about everything, why don't they read the brochure properly and they would get a good idea what to expect. If you pay for a cabin on the lowest deck you are quite likely to get some degree of engine vibration noise, it's a ship!!! We did 4 of the excursions on offer and thoroughly enjoyed each one. It's enough to give a taste of each place and they were well organised. We were a bit disappointed that the comedian and guest speaker were the same as on the April cruise we did and their material was the same all over again. As Magellan has quite a high number of returning guests this is not a good idea. We unfortunately had to use the ship infirmary when my husband was taken ill. The staff were so kind and helpful, informing us of everything and reassuring us. The Guest Manager Julie was so helpful and arranged all sorts of services for us. All staff were pleasant and helpful. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2015
We have just returned from our 1st cruise on Magellan. We had a wonderful time. We have cruised many times with PO and Thompsons . But have to say that this was a wonderful cruise. Ship was kept very clean. Food was very good plenty of ... Read More
We have just returned from our 1st cruise on Magellan. We had a wonderful time. We have cruised many times with PO and Thompsons . But have to say that this was a wonderful cruise. Ship was kept very clean. Food was very good plenty of variety. Entertainment was good and always plenty of variety on sea days the team work very hard. . We also were rather apprehensive after reading reviews. But so pleased we decided to judge for ourself. Our cabin was inside (kept clean) our cabin steward was very friendly and always ready to please nothing to much trouble. Excursion only used beach transfers even given refund when it was bad weather. Embarkation and Disembarkation very easy left a suitcase was informed at once so able to get back quickly. will not hesitate to book again. already looking for next year. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2015
This was our second time with CMV. Last year we went to Iceland on Marco Polo, this time we were on Magellan, calling at Amsterdam, Hamburg, Helsingborg, Copenhagen and Aalborg. We are planning to travel cruise with them again. We have ... Read More
This was our second time with CMV. Last year we went to Iceland on Marco Polo, this time we were on Magellan, calling at Amsterdam, Hamburg, Helsingborg, Copenhagen and Aalborg. We are planning to travel cruise with them again. We have previously been on Royal Caribbean and Carnival out of the US. CMV have two big advantages for us - embarking at Tilbury, less than 2 hour's drive away, and the fact that they do not cater for children. On top of that, they give good value for money. Whether or not it will suit you depends on your expectations. Embarkation - we parked at Tilbury. Parking staff are unfailingly friendly and helpful. One set of buses to take people to the ship and another set to take the luggage. We arrived at our specified time and were on board within 40 minutes of arriving at the car park. Ship - Magellan is bigger than Marco Polo, 1200 instead of 800 passengers. I prefer Marco Polo because I like the smaller number of people. Both have a long history and are therefore not sparkling new. However, like Marco Polo, Magellan is sparkling clean and comfortable. It has two restaurants and several bar/lounge areas. Nice reading room and a bridge/games room. There is a small, rather sad looking casino area that we did not use, despite not being averse to a small wager, because it never looked much fun when we went past. There is a shop, but no hard-selling of anything. Also a spa, which I did not use. A reasonable gym with adequate machines. Cabin - We were lucky with our cabin because we ended up in 1114, one of only 14 balcony suites on the ship, on Navigator deck. When we booked, the cruise had been scheduled to be on Marco Polo and we had booked a category 12 cabin - when they changed the ship to Magellan they upgraded us to the suite, we think to discourage us from cancelling our booking due to the change of ship. Suite was huge, with more than enough wardrobe space, sofa, table and chairs, large TV and jacuzzi bath, and an unobstructed view from the balcony. However, most readers will not want to be paying for a suite (neither will we next time we cruise with CMV) so the good news is that the rest of the cabins seem to be very comfortable. We did not hear any complaints about the layout or space available in other cabins, only about noise - so be careful about cabins close to the engines or directly under the theatre where they are rehearsing shows at all hours of the day and night. Food - We always do late seating at dinner. We were allocated to Kensington restaurant (the other is Waldorf) where late seating is 8.30pm - this is as later than we have had on other ships, and it appeared that it was too late for many people, because on our table for eight, there was only ever four of us there - and in general the restaurant always seemed only 60 percent full. This is a shame because part of the fun of cruising for us is meeting plenty of people at dinner. We were very fortunate in that our two companions were very good fun. The food in Kensington in general was good to very good. Five courses at dinner, just the right size portions. I had one beef dish that was tasteless - servers would have willingly replaced it with something else if I had asked. Servers are very friendly, some of them are still honing their English skills are were new to the ship, but were always helpful and pleasant. I would recommend having breakfast(buffet) and lunch (served) in the restaurant too, because the alternative casual eating venue, Raffles Bistro, was usually a complete zoo - at peak times it was impossible to find anywhere to sit and although the food was perfectly OK it was not an enjoyable place to be. The best thing about it was hidden away next to the pizza stand, where they had a different roast meat everyday carved off the bone. Drinks - very reasonable beer prices; daily cocktail specials under four pounds; however, all the cocktails were far too sweet for my taste, so we usually drank wine or beer in the bars; bottles of wine in the restaurant were not extortionate and they kept unfinished bottles for us until the next dinner. They do a deal where you pay 17 pounds a day to drink all you want, but I think you'd have to start drinking very early in the day for it to be worth it. Entertainment - not a strong point. They try hard, but the shows in the theatre were not very good. They lack a few good voices to carry the musical numbers. Apparently the interviews with the ex-Bond Girls were good, but we did not see them. Carmen Duo are an excellent classical pianist and violinist who were playing most evenings in one of the bars. The little band in the Captain's Club were competent. The 'pianist' in Sinatra's Bar was obviously not primarily a musician. On Marco Polo last year the entertainment director was absolutely first rate, and had an excellent singing voice as well - wish he could have been on Magellan. Activities during the day - low key, which is how we like it. We met some people to play bridge, and several other people used the games room. There was bingo, and I did a line dancing class which was good fun. There were other little things going on, but we generally just liked resting and reading on the days we were not in port. Destinations - very enjoyable. Overall, for the organised excursions we got very good local guides who knew their stuff, spoke excellent English and were good value. In Amsterdam we did our own thing and went to the Van Gogh Museum (get there as early as possible to avoid queues) and a canal cruise. In Hamburg we took a coach trip to Lubeck - excellent tour but too short - needed another hour. In Helsingborg we went to Sofiero Gardens on a trip - off season for the gardens but lovely guide and lots of history of the area. Did a city tour in Copenhagen, another excellent guide, then wandered about by ourselves for a while. Aalborg is small - you can walk around it all by yourself very easily, but it is well worth going on the trip to the Viking burial ground and museum first - really first rate guide and experience. Crew - Captain was Greek and his heavily accented announcements over the tannoy were almost undecipherable. However, he seems to know how to captain a ship. Other crew members are from all over the globe, largest contingent from the Ukraine. They were all helpful and pleasant, even if some of them seem to have had their smile muscles removed. Other - the resident photographer is very good. They take pictures at every opportunity but there is absolutely no pressure to buy any of them. I bought some that they took of us at the formal dinners because they were good quality and reasonable prices. The stairs are very steep (notably steeper than Marco Polo) - but the lifts are reliable. Disembarkation - if you want to get off quickly, be prepared to carry your own bags off and you can leave before everyone else. Otherwise you disembark according to your deck, collect luggage in the terminal and then, if you have parked, get on the bus to the car park. Very smooth process. In summary, we left the ship very happy, having visited some interesting places and had a pleasant low-key on board experience. We will happily cruise on Magellan (or Marco Polo) again, because the overall experience suits us and suits our budget. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2015
This was our first cruise so we did not know what to expect . Well we did not need to worry because it was excellent from start to finish . Our cabin was very comfy lots of wardrobe space , bathroom was good, shower excellent, and we had ... Read More
This was our first cruise so we did not know what to expect . Well we did not need to worry because it was excellent from start to finish . Our cabin was very comfy lots of wardrobe space , bathroom was good, shower excellent, and we had a window which was a bonus . The restaurants were excellent the bistro could get busy but that wasn't a problem for us , plenty off choice and lots of it . Entertainment was good and all the staff were excellent could not do enough for you . The excursions were very well organised although I think some were a bit expensive , but very interesting . All in all we had a great time and we would defiantly book to go on the Magellan again . Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2015
This was only our second ever cruise, the first being a British Isles trip aboard Marco Polo which we enjoyed immensely. We found that embarkation at Tilbury was nowhere near as slick and easy as our experience at the CMV desks in ... Read More
This was only our second ever cruise, the first being a British Isles trip aboard Marco Polo which we enjoyed immensely. We found that embarkation at Tilbury was nowhere near as slick and easy as our experience at the CMV desks in Newcastle - on the Tilbury voyage our boarding cards were given to the wrong people and there was a mistake made when registering our credit card (which was swiftly corrected by the excellent reception staff on board the ship). Once aboard we received a very warm welcome from the staff and were shown to our cabin on deck 6. It was a lovely room, very clean, light and spacious. The service throughout our voyage was extremely good, the staff are very friendly and helpful. The shopping area aboard ship was a bit of a disappointment, heaps of space but very little stock to fill it and poor choice. We found this odd because on longer trips there is a captive audience who would perhaps love to spend a little time shopping for gifts etc. Our main criticism of this cruise is not about the ship or her crew but about the passengers who continually sat at the tables in the bistro whether they were eating or not. Many, many times we saw people taking their plates of food outside to eat (and it was cold!) because they couldn't find a table.....yet so many tables were occupied by people chatting over coffee or reading a book. Perhaps if there were notices asking passengers to vacate their table after eating the staff would feel they were in a position to uphold this request and kindly suggest that people move on to allow others to enjoy their meal in comfort? The food was very good, we had either breakfast or lunch in the bistro and each evening ate in the Waldorf restaurant where the standards of service were high. The entertainment was average but nevertheless we enjoyed the acts we saw. The free coffee from the drinks station is terrible - not just our opinion but that of many others we spoke to - but it's not too expensive to buy a coffee in the bars, and neither are the drinks prices expensive either. The all-inclusive package is a good buy if you like a few soft drinks through the day and then some drinks during the evening. Life boat drill, though essential, was very long and drawn out - I think it took 90 minutes from start to finish (surely by that time the ship would have capsized!). Shore excursions were very well planned and the guides had good knowledge of the places we visited. Our particular favourites were Amsterdam, Hamburg and Copenhagen. To summarize we had a really good time -of course it's only natural to compare when you have only been on two cruises but I think our favourite ship is the Marco Polo. Nevertheless we would definitely consider travelling on the Magellan again if the itinerary was what we were looking for. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2015
There have been several reviews of the CMV Magellan, which show that passenger reactions can be very varied. We booked a very reasonably priced 6 night cruise called Autumn Gardens on a bogof deal with cabin allocated by the company. We ... Read More
There have been several reviews of the CMV Magellan, which show that passenger reactions can be very varied. We booked a very reasonably priced 6 night cruise called Autumn Gardens on a bogof deal with cabin allocated by the company. We expected a low deck inside cabin and found we had been allocated to a family cabin with small portholes (no view) on the lower deck at the forward end of the ship. First impressions of the cabin were very positive, as there was sufficient room to swing many cats as the wardrobes were in the anteroom which would otherwise be for third or possibly fourth occupants. What we did not know was that cabin 4007 is directly over the bow thruster, a piece of machinery that is activated each time port is reached or left. When the bow thrusters are on, the noise is so intense that occupancy of the cabin is intolerable. As we were arriving in a new port each day, usually in the early morning, we came to expect this noise and when practical, made arrangements to be elsewhere. It also seemed that the rear of the ship could get pretty noisy and juddery at times on several decks, so if you are choosing a cabin, aim for midships. Boarding at Tilbury on this occasion was fairly easy with lots of road signage if you are driving yourself. There is a big Asda very close to the port for any last minute purchases. The company discourages you from dropping off your bags before parking. The car park is a bus ride away, and whilst it works, it is not as comfortable or as efficient as the experience we had with Holland America at Harwich. A double decker bus is used, and one has to wait until it is full. Given the number of passengers with mobility issues, there may be no space on the lower deck. Bags were picked up at the car park, and did arrive in a reasonable time at our cabin. Our boarding time was set for 2.30 i.e. the last to board, but in the event, we were allowed on board almost as soon as we arrived at the cruise terminal, which is just as well as the terminal facilities are sparse. We were in lunch pretty quickly in the Raffles buffet restaurant, and then looked around the boat, as it was new to us. We thought the general condition and appearance of the ship was good for its age with plenty of seating, and many bars and public spaces to choose from. It is not the most modern of ships, but it does not pretend to be other than what is publicized. There are not a lot of on-board shops, which has the positive effect of one not being made to feel that the agenda lurches from one shopping opportunity to the next, which does happen on some of the American cruises. The company knows its client demography well, and seemed well-pitched at British blue collar retirement aged folk who know a bargain when they see one. Food on board is a critical part of any cruise and the Magellan aims to not challenge middle England. It is good plain food for good plain people. There are three restaurants on the Magellan. Two are formal with two sittings each and one is a buffet restaurant which closes about 8 pm. We had requested a late sitting (8.15pm) and a table for two, and both wishes were granted. We noted that this later sitting in the Waldorf Restaurant had plenty of space at tables, and there were pairs eating at tables for 6 or 8, and even some empty tables. The restaurant staff told us that the early sittings are the most popular (possibly because of access to all the evening entertainment), but we would not want to eat at 5.45 or 6.15, although most of the passengers had opted for this. I would rate the food in the served restaurants as good, with a fair choice (never a problem there and no disappointments). The buffet restaurant at lunch was, like other ships, a bit of a scrum, with a struggle to find a table unless you come early or late. The temperature of buffet food was poor, but this is typical. You have to keep an eye out for when they change vats of food. Typically there would be a choice of two meats, a fish dish and a pasta dish. Buffet food was bland and uninspiring – more functional than entertaining, in contrast to the main restaurants. Desserts on the buffet were below the quality of the main restaurants, usually being cake based. The buffet tends to run down about 30mins before closing with less choice and fewer serving stations. They regularly ran out of cutlery. There was an impressive gala buffet displayed late one evening: this was splendid and showed that the chefs were capable of great things. It was a pity that it was so shortly after later dinner, so any food eaten was done so out of pure greed The serving staff was very mixed: it is a bit of a United Nations on the ship with a mix of Eastern Europeans and Asian staff. In my opinion, the language training was very patchy, and whilst most spoke restaurant English, the minute a question was posed which was not on their script, it was unlikely that there would be an answer without consulting management. E.g. are there any knives? In the served restaurants, there is a wine service, with middle of the road table wine costing about £20-£30/bottle. Otherwise drinks at bars are priced probably below (London) pub prices, and a cocktail of the day was available at £3.10. Unlike on some US based ships, there is no service charge on drinks. There are drinks packages available which allow access to house wine, some spirits and cocktails and other non-premium drinks and cost £17/day provided all the occupants of a cabin buy into it. If you like a drink and would consume more than 5 regular alcoholic drinks during the day, then this may be for you, but our bar bill for two came to a maximum of £20/day on a pay as you go basis. Entertainment on a cruise is also a very big deal, especially if you don’t get out much or live somewhere where there is no access to live theatre and similar. For a short cruise on a mid sized boat, there was no shortage of set entertainment of the typical middle of the road easy listening style. The shows are put on twice nightly to match the dinner sittings in their fairly large show-lounge. At first glance the show lounge is impressive with tiered seating and a large stage, but the tiering is insufficiently raised, and because of the physical structure, there are only a few seats that do not either have a barrier in front of them or a pole partially obstructing views. By and large, the entertainments were well received, and the casts mostly enthusiastic. On our six nights, there was something to watch every evening, and a late night cabaret in one of the bars. Excursions were pretty run of the mill and relatively expensive, but not as expensive as on Holland America. At one port, Zeebrugge (for Bruges), it was made quite clear that it would be very difficult to leave the port and go anywhere without one of the supplied trips. At two destinations (Jersey and Guersney), the captain made the decision not to land (i.e. 40% of destination ports and their linked excursions) because of high seas. These ports were serviced by tender boats, and hence the decision. I read subsequently that difficulties with tenders at the Channel Islands were common, but if that were the case, may be they should never have been on the itinerary. (To give you the bigger picture, on our last cruise on CMV Marco Polo, 2/3 tender landings were cancelled, so to date my record with CMV is 1/5 tender landings successful. I would advise concentrating on those trips with no tendering to shore). Instead of Jersey and Guernsey, we were offered the ports of Cherbourg and Rouen on which we had done no research. The ship offered short notice excursions, which filled up quickly, and the remaining passengers were left to sort themselves out, which is easy in Rouen, but tricky in Cherbourg. The excursion in Cherbourg was a scenic drive taking in a couple of small ports and the cabbage fields of Normandy, and priced at £45. To make things even more complex we arrived at Honfleur, our final port, many hours early, but despite this, the captain was taken by surprise by the rise and fall of the tides. After 30 minutes, the original gangway on level 5 was unusable and the exit had to be re-sited on level 8 entailing a delay of 20 minutes on already short outings. Our trip to Bayeux was very rushed leaving insufficient time after visiting the tapestry to visit the tapestry museum and explanatory film in English and still have time to see the town and have a coffee on a trip that did not return until 2p.m. Staff on the boat is very mixed, and a large contingent coming from Ukraine and lesser numbers from Bulgaria and Romania. English language skills in the lower ranks were poor. The captain is Greek and whilst he spoke English, left us with the impression that he would prefer not to. The captain’s daily announcements were therefore difficult to decipher, and the grand announcement about the loss of the Channel Islands was so indistinct that even members of the crew were left asking what was going on. Others have mentioned the somewhat military style boat drill. Whilst on some cruise ships this has descended to a perfunctory performance just asking people to assemble at the muster stations, possibly with their life jackets, the captain went all the way bar boarding the life boats. This included the crocodile up the decks to the lifeboat area, and inspection by the captain. In our boat, one person was identified as having donned their jacket inadequately, and the captain retied the knots. Perhaps there was something that we should have known? Positives: Very cheap way to cruise UK style with pub prices for drink Good destinations, and whilst excursions are not cheap, they are cheaper than other lines Food to UK tastes and not very exciting and of limited variety, and that might not be what you want. I would not recommend the burgers from the grill. Enthusiastic Entertainment Negatives: Many of crew with lack of culture of hospitality and care (of the elderly). Some would benefit from more language training. Cabins and amenities a bit Spartan, but good for price and those in know bring their own toiletries. Not much of a shopping opportunity, but some would regard that as very positive. Cabins above bow thrusters can be very noisy at arrival and departures. Ship starting to show age, but mostly works. Steep steps between decks that might defeat the less abled, but the elevators were adequate. Overall, a satisfactory basic cruise experience, but watch out for the tender ports. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2015
We have just returned from an autumn Fjords cruise on Magallen. We are over 60s and quite difficult to please so I would like to dispel all the negative comments about this ship. We really enjoyed our cruise due to all the high standards ... Read More
We have just returned from an autumn Fjords cruise on Magallen. We are over 60s and quite difficult to please so I would like to dispel all the negative comments about this ship. We really enjoyed our cruise due to all the high standards on board and the amazingly friendly and efficient staff. The whole ship was spotlessly clean and, although an older ship, was run run absolutely efficiently. We had a spacious twin cabin on Deck 6 with a picture window, which was kept very clean and tidy by our cabin steward, a lovely girl from the Ukraine, who was very welcoming and friendly and added to our enjoyable experience on board. We ate in the buffet restaurant each day as we prefer to eat informally and the food was delicious with the chef providing attractive and varied food every day. We understand that the dining in the formal restaurants was superb as well. The waiting staff were efficient and friendly and nothing was too much trouble for them. They looked very smart and kept the whole buffet area clean and spotless. We attended some talks and activities and enjoyed these. There was entertainment provided every evening which we did not attend but with which other passengers were very happy. Even on a ship capable of taking 1400 passengers we could always find a quiet spot up on the top decks and enjoy the scenery passing by. Deck chairs and loungers were provided and lovely cosy blankets for the chillier times. There were also many lounges and bars to sit in and drink under cover in the warm. We encountered some rough seas with three metre high waves but they hardly made any impression on the Magallen and we could walk about the ship easily and the lifts still functioned well. We could not hear any engine noise where we were on deck 6 apart from the thrusters when we were coming into dock, which is understandable. The air conditioning was easily adjusted with the control on the ceiling. The excursions were interesting and the fjords were lovely and although this is an older ship, we would recommend this ship and cruise. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2015
We booked the Autumn Fjords cruise on Magellan when it was first advertised. We then had to sit back and read some of the horrendous reviews and stories that were gradually appearing. I can happily say that most of the teething ... Read More
We booked the Autumn Fjords cruise on Magellan when it was first advertised. We then had to sit back and read some of the horrendous reviews and stories that were gradually appearing. I can happily say that most of the teething problems have been addressed and we had a wonderful time. It is always the itinerary and not the ship that attracts us to a particular cruise and we have been on a number of cruises in the past ranging from extremely small ships to very large ships carrying 4000 plus passengers, so have a very open mind. The Magellan exceeded our expectations and we enjoyed everything it had to offer. Cabin: The ship was spotlessly clean and our cabin on Deck 6 was kept clean and tidy with fresh towels every day if required. It was spacious with plenty of wardrobe space and enough space under the beds for suitcases. Yes, I did miss having a kettle in the cabin, but contrary to the C & M brochure stating that tea and coffee facilities were only available between 6.00 a.m. and 10.p.m., they now leave one tea/coffee station open 24 hours. Food and Restaurants: We ate in all the restaurants at different times and found the food to be of a good standard. Breakfast is self service in the Bistro, and part waiter/part self service in both the Kensington and Waldorf. Formal nights (which the other half hates) are a mixture of bow ties and lounge suits, and the ladies attire seemed to be anything from black trousers/tops to long dresses – as formal as you want it to be. There is always the Bistro if you want to avoid formal altogether! We never had a problem finding a seat, but this was probably due to the fact we avoided peak times to eat. Example: 9.15 a.m. for breakfast could be hectic, but 30 minutes earlier and the restaurants were only half full. All about choosing your times. Entertainment: The entertainment was excellent (in fact the crew were better than some of the big ships we have been on as many of them were professionally trained – simply wonderful violinist, saxophonist, piano player and singers. The bonus was Dane Cordean (so funny, and actually a very clever magician)! Excursions: We went on 3 excursions and felt them all to be good value. We had one particular issue when the ship docked later than expected and excursion times were changed. We were really disappointed and gave the lovely girl at the Shore Excursion desk a chance to rectify our complaint before coming home and moaning. She was extremely helpful under stress and went the extra mile to sort out the problem for which we were extremely grateful. Drinks package: We did take the drinks package, but even now we are home, we are not sure if it is good value or not, as most of the cocktails were only £3 - £4 and the house wine (which is in the package) is about £16 a bottle. We thought we would easily drink a bottle of wine a night and with cocktails and drinks in the day thought we would benefit. However, I think we probably came out about even at the end of the week. Staff: Polite, helpful and friendly. Embarkation at Tilbury. Oh dear, this was the bit I was dreading writing about. C & M are well aware it was dreadful on the day in question. A catalogue of unfortunate incidents and the fact that the ship returned to dock four hours late had a dreadful knock on effect. The car parks were chaos, as the staff just weren’t ready for the number of people disembarking and embarking at the same time and picking up and leaving cars. It was totally unacceptable at the terminal to leave passengers in the second hold area without any information. This needs to re-assessed should it happen again. Free coffee and tea at the very least should be available, along with adequate seating for those in need. Disembarkation at Tilbury. Went without hitch. Suggestion to C & M. Get rid of the double decker bus and use coaches to transport passengers back to the car park. Am sure all those suitcases in the gangways is not good from a Health & Safety perspective! After all the negative reviews, I hope my review has restored a little confidence in C & M. I think they got off to a bad start but have worked hard to rectify the issues. We have in fact decided to embark on the Iceland cruise on the Magellan in April next year departing from Newcastle (a long drive for us, but we hope it is worth it) Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2015
We had seen a number of pretty average reviews before our cruise and were expecting a reflection of that but I have to say we were pleasantly surprised on a number of levels: 1. The food was exceptionally good every day with a hint of ... Read More
We had seen a number of pretty average reviews before our cruise and were expecting a reflection of that but I have to say we were pleasantly surprised on a number of levels: 1. The food was exceptionally good every day with a hint of 'cordon blue' which we liked. The food had lots of flavour and was well presented and served. 2. The cabin, a junior suite, was exceptionally spacious and well appointed with loads of space. It was a pleasure to return to it in the evening. The cabin steward was friendly and attentive and cleaned our cabin beautifully twice each day. 3.The entertainment each evening proved to be somewhat variable but overall was satisfactory with some excellent individual shows. The viewing experience can be less than satisfactory if you are stuck behind one of the many columns situated around the auditorium. 4.Embarkation was very efficient and quicker than we expected, with our luggage arriving in good time. A similar positive experience when we disembarked at Tilbury. 5.The Gym was satisfactory with one machine out of action. All machines were clean. 6.The daily activities were a little skewed towards the older and maybe less mobile traveller which we found a little disappointing. We are 70 and 68 respectively but would appreciate some more challenging and useful activities. Maybe a short course on taking better pictures or maybe Tai Chi. This area is of course a very personal one! Many of the more active sessions seemed to happen soon after breakfast time which seemed a little strange we thought. 7. The outside deck areas were a little 'soul less' and not very inviting with large expanses of nothing on the top decks. A pity as the interior of the ship was well appointed and comfortable. 8. All the staff we came in contact with were helpful and professional which really contributed towards a positive and pleasurable cruise experience. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2015
Overall a lovely cruise, we had an outside cabin, with a window, which was spacious with plenty of hanging and storage space. All the staff on board were helpful and friendly. The food was very good especially in the buffet. Lunch in the ... Read More
Overall a lovely cruise, we had an outside cabin, with a window, which was spacious with plenty of hanging and storage space. All the staff on board were helpful and friendly. The food was very good especially in the buffet. Lunch in the restaurants could have been better but dinner in the Waldorf every evening was very good. Beware of the "All Inclusive £17 per head per day drinks package" because not every thing is included and the bar menu did not clearly show what was and what was not included also do not forget your plug adaptor as the shop didn't have any nor did reception. Apart from that we had a smashing time! Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2015
Just returned from a great cruise to St Petersburg on CMV's Magellan and thought I'd write a note to allay the fears of others who may have been concerned about some of the early reviews. To cut to the chase, CMV offer very good ... Read More
Just returned from a great cruise to St Petersburg on CMV's Magellan and thought I'd write a note to allay the fears of others who may have been concerned about some of the early reviews. To cut to the chase, CMV offer very good value but you don't get all the frills that I suspect you'd expect from more expensive cruise lines with newer megaships and all mod cons. You're going to be upset if you want a champagne lifestyle for beer prices, but if you want to travel comfortably on a pleasant ship with an excellent crew then read on. As we live in SE London, the coach transfer from Victoria made sense, and was reasonable value at £25 return. Embarkation was straightforward and cases soon arrived at our outside cabin on deck 6 - clean, quiet, surprisingly spacious with plenty of storage space, very comfortable beds and a great powerful shower. Take extra hangers though, if you're packing clothes for more than a week or so. The ship itself is a nice size - large enough to be able to find some space to oneself if you want to escape, but small enough to feel like a ship rather than floating apartment complex. There's plenty of deck space but the sheltered spots are taken quickly; the pools are small (think dip rather than lengths). Sinatra's Bar was a nice place for a cocktail or evening drink, listening to the pianist and Hampton's Bar was a treat in the late evening when the superb pianist and violinist played some lovely classical pieces (and more modern songs that had been rearranged in a classical way). Shows in the main lounge were of a decent standard, with excellent choreography, dancing and lighting occasionally let down by average singing from some performers. The house band are superb. More variety in the style and format of shows would be nice and sight lines in the main theatre are tricky - too many pillars and screens make it difficult to find chairs with an unblocked view. The two restaurants are comfortable and self-service buffet area fine if you would prefer a more relaxed setting...as long as you avoid the busiest periods when finding a place to sit could be quite challenging. A tip - breakfast in bed is free and you avoid the crowds, so if you're happy with fruit, cereal, yoghurt, juice, toast and tea/coffee this is a very nice option. As for the food generally, it was always at least adequate and often rather better than that; not haute cuisine but decent. House wines were good (£15 a bottle for Spanish reds and whites) but if you move up the wine list to spend in the low to mid £20s you don't get a big jump in quality. Cocktails and spirits are cheap - around £3.50 each. We took advantage of the £85 voucher offer for five bottles of wine and ten litres of water, which worked perfectly for us; the £17 per day drinks package may work for people who expect to drink a lot more. Sadly tea and coffee were a let-down. You can pay extra for decent coffees but the standard fare was average at best, and tea tasted mostly of chlorinated water. PS CMV, no cruise line offering a "traditional British" experience should allow Lipton tea anywhere near their ships - inexcusable tasteless brew! The crew work incredibly hard and were unfailingly friendly and helpful. We couldn't praise them highly enough and there were numerous examples of them going the extra mile to help people have a great time on board. There were plenty of activities available, geared often for an older age group; if CMV would like to attract more younger customers this is an area they might want to develop - quizzes, craft classes and ballroom dancing appeal to a particular demographic.... And some more lectures/talks about the ports would be nice too - beyond a sales pitch for the ship's excursions. Talking of those, we mostly did our own thing but the ship excursion from Warnemunde to Schwerin Castle in Germany was excellent, and we appreciated the free shuttle buses laid on in a number of the other ports. A very full two day package we organised with SPB Tours in St Petersburg was absolutely superb and I'd wholeheartedly recommend it for people who want to be a bit more adventurous than the ship's coach tours. In summary, we booked this cruise for the itinerary rather than the ship and were a little worried about the latter. We needn't have worried - we had a great time and perhaps the best way I could conclude this review is to say that if Magellan was doing another itinerary I was interested in, I'd have no hesitation in booking again if the price was right. It's good value at the discounted and two for one prices you can often get from CMV - perhaps less so at the full sticker price, but I'm not sure many people paid that. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2015
This was my second time on Magellan and I had a wonderful holiday. It was relaxing and the itinerary and weather were fantastic. Very good value for money. A special mention to all the staff on Magellan who are friendly and very hard ... Read More
This was my second time on Magellan and I had a wonderful holiday. It was relaxing and the itinerary and weather were fantastic. Very good value for money. A special mention to all the staff on Magellan who are friendly and very hard working, they certainly go the extra mile. The food I found was very good indeed. Some people complained about the size of the portions but with five courses for dinner, how much food do you want? I am a large person with a big appetite and was more than satisfied with the variety and amount of delicious treats. The soup was especially mention worthy. First time I had lemon soup. Very refreshing. The only reason my review does not give five stars are the lack of seating and size of some of the public spaces. The library is too small and the show lounge seems to have too many pillars and Perspex screens for a decent view of the stage. As the weather was very good a lot of people were on deck but I'm not sure if I could go on a cold weather cruise on Magellan. The casino which was barely ever used could be changed to more seating I think. My cabin was great. Shower best on any ship. Great supply of hot water with really good force. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2015
We booked this Scandinavian Cruise in Dec 2014 before Magellan was launched with Cruise & Maritime. I had read some truly shocking reviews and was very apprehensive. We need not have worried as had nothing to personally to complain ... Read More
We booked this Scandinavian Cruise in Dec 2014 before Magellan was launched with Cruise & Maritime. I had read some truly shocking reviews and was very apprehensive. We need not have worried as had nothing to personally to complain about on the ship. We have been with P & O many times previously so expected our car and luggage to be taken same as Southampton. So was a bit of a surprise when it doesn't work like that at Tilbury. You have to go to a car park and get a complimentary bus back with your luggage. This was not a problem but be aware if you have been with other cruise lines before that it is different. Cabin 4117. Low mid ship. Very nice room, spotlessly clean. It does have an engine noise constantly, but we both like that so was not a problem for us. Dress code was more or less upheld by most, I actually enjoy getting on my glad rags, but the crew did not seem too fussy if people preferred not to dressed up. Food was yummy! As much as I love P & O I think the food in the Waldorf Restaurant was actually better. I have a gluten free diet and the Waiters could not do enough to accommodate me. Talking of the Waitiers, on Table 181 (2nd sitting) they were the loveliest two waiters, so happy, curteous, friendly and very helpful. Was very impressed with both of them. One evening the buffet was full of the most wonderful food. It was a true spectacular thing to see, flowers and animal made from vegetables and fruit. Delicious cakes and drinks etc Carvings of all sorts it was truly brilliant. Got some great ideas. Those Chefs had worked so hard. The ship is nicely proportioned. Plenty of inside seating areas. Tasteful decorated bars. Big show lounge with usual cabaret type shows. Which were entertaining. Pianist and classic music in other bars. Scots Disco which stayed open the latest. Loads of sunbeds for sunny days and loads of deck space. Did not do any daytime activities as not really interested in the choice, mostly aimed at older guests. To be fair average age was 65+ years. We are 54 and 49. Only a suggestion: it would have been nice to have a Cinema on board with some modern films on sea days for younger ones. I had read previously about lack of public toilets, which I find a bit odd as they were dotted around everywhere on the ship. I have to say not brilliantly signposted but they are there. Cruise went to: Amsterdam - was walkable from ship. Went on a water boat for a trip which was a very relaxing way to get a good look about. Hamburgh - complimentary 15 minute coach journey. It was not my favourite place to visit as it was a Sunday and lots of shops were closed and did rain a bit. Copenhagen - was walkable from the ship. A very nice place to visit. Again took a boat tripand ship did not leave till 10pm so was very relaxed and no rushing back to ship.. Helsingborg Sweden - complimentary coach. We took the Ferry to Helsingor (which is actually Denmark) and hired some bicycles from a camp site which we really enjoyed as allowed us to get beyond usual tourist places and saw some lovely beach areas and scenery. Only problem was got back to the last coach to the ship by the skin of our teeth - last coach 6pm so perhaps would not recommend going across if time restraints. Aalborg - was docked right on the town. Lovely place to visit. All in all we had a great 8 days. Note: Our friends were on same cruise on deck 7, inside cabin, they said that the walls were very thin between cabins. Although everyone was asleep at night so they were not disturbed at night time, but were woken up each morning by loud voices in next cabin. So personally would recommend a lower deck. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2015
We wanted a relaxing break with no fuss and good service and that's what we got. The Magellan may not have the panache and facilities of many more modern and larger ships but if you want a more intimate traditional cruise that is good ... Read More
We wanted a relaxing break with no fuss and good service and that's what we got. The Magellan may not have the panache and facilities of many more modern and larger ships but if you want a more intimate traditional cruise that is good value then this was hard to beat. The food was fine and they accommodated Gluten free dietary needs very well which was a big plus. The buffet restaurant was probably average by other standards but the Kensington and Waldorf restaurants were excellent. We had an inside cabin which was roomy, clean and modern. The staff were excellent and could not have been more helpful. This is a new ship for CMV and there is some fine tuning to be done for sure but they have a good all round liner here. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2015
We just returned from an 8 day cruise on Magellan cruising to Amsterdam, Scandinavia and Denmark sailing from Tilbury. Embarkation was amazing quick, very impressed. Cabins were great, a lot bigger than we expected, as usual the ... Read More
We just returned from an 8 day cruise on Magellan cruising to Amsterdam, Scandinavia and Denmark sailing from Tilbury. Embarkation was amazing quick, very impressed. Cabins were great, a lot bigger than we expected, as usual the steward does an exclnt job of looking after u. Bar and restaurant are all exclnt, can't fault anything about food or drinks. We did buy a drinks package for £140 each.... After adding up our bar receipts it was deff worth it lol. The cocktails to die for lol Entertainment were amazing, they work soooo hard. The nite shows were brilliant, big shout out to Lee who kept us entertained lol. Just a shame there wasn't more going on in the day. Pools were cold do didn't use them, mind 1 pool was out of order all week. Jacuzzi 's were lovely and hot. Ports of call were great, we did go to Hamburg on Sunday and it was cold and everywhere closed!!!!! All in all had a great trip, fellow travellers aswell as staff were all great Read Less
Magellan Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.0 3.7
Dining 4.0 3.6
Entertainment 3.0 3.2
Public Rooms 4.0 3.6
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.2
Family 1.0 3.2
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.5
Enrichment 3.0 3.0
Service 4.0 3.9
Value For Money 5.0 3.6

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