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58 Costa Mediterranea Cruise Reviews

We chose this cruise and were joined by two friends. As mentioned in other reviews we did not set sail due to Corona Virus affecting sailing ports of call. Have to say we found the staff extremely helpful and courteous at all times. Keep ... Read More
We chose this cruise and were joined by two friends. As mentioned in other reviews we did not set sail due to Corona Virus affecting sailing ports of call. Have to say we found the staff extremely helpful and courteous at all times. Keep in mind these people were under extreme stress being far from their home base and not having any certainty of their position. The ship was very clean and there was only 800 people on board. We have traveled on over 20 cruises with various companies and booked this trip for the itinerary then read horrible reviews and were worried that it was not going to be up to scratch. Only criticism the food is pretty average however breakfast in the dining room was excellent. Didn’t like the fact that they don’t give iced water in restaurant with meals unless you pay for it. Costa went above and beyond as far as we are concerned under extremely difficult times that were changing hourly. They had buses ready to take us to a resort where they paid accommodation, food and drinks then they transferred us to the airport and paid our flight home. On top of this they gave us 150% credit to use on a future cruise. We say Good on you Costa Cruises you looked after us and got us home safely and we look forward to travelling with you again. Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
Having long wanted to visit the area of the Indian Ocean (Mauritius, Seychelles, Madagascar, La Reunion) covered by this cruise, we were pleased to find the one operator, Costa, who seemed able to include all these in a two-week, very ... Read More
Having long wanted to visit the area of the Indian Ocean (Mauritius, Seychelles, Madagascar, La Reunion) covered by this cruise, we were pleased to find the one operator, Costa, who seemed able to include all these in a two-week, very reasonably priced package in a circular cruise starting from Mauritius. We took the gamble of booking a reserved but unknown balcony cabin and were pleased to find it was no more expensive to book our own flights than pay for them via the cruise company, so we were able to spend a few days before and after the cruise in Mauritius. It was only after booking that we started to read the sometimes horrendous accounts of experiences on this ship on English-language websites including this one. So it was with some trepidation that we lined up to board on February 1st. To be fair, first impressions weren't great as we had to queue for nearly an hour in the heat under a canopy to check in, though there were accessible cold drinks during that time. Once inside , however, we were very pleased to find our spacious balcony cabin on Deck 6, with no restricted view. Suitcases went easily under the bed and generally there was easily enough storage room, also in the bathroom which is not always the case. The bed was quite hard but very comfortable and we slept extremely well throughout the cruise. The one disappointment in the room was the TV, most of whose numbered channels did not work or varied from day to day. It was only after a week that we discovered that channels like BBC World did exist on unannounced obscure numbers like 768 (!) which we came across purely by chance. Our cabin steward Juan from Honduras was always pleasant and helpful and kept the cabin clean. Part of our deal had been to leave open the dining time. To our dismay we found we had been allocated the 9pm sitting, but an immediate visit to the maitre d' on the first afternoon sorted that out and we had the earlier 6.30 sitting we wanted. We were allocated to a table for 8 which we shared with 3 Americans and later a Dutchman travelling alone. Fortunately we all got on very well and even shared a number of our own excursions. Opinions on our table about the food were mixed, but we thought that generally it was of a perfectly acceptable quality, the best dishes being the various pasta dishes ("primo piatto") and some very good desserts. Main courses were OK if less exciting. The theme over the two weeks was supposedly to showcase the cuisine of a different Italian region every night. Service was good and professional by the same dedicated waiters each night. Gustavo and Joseph were great in that respect and provided us with lots of "insider" information too! One annoying thing which Costa could certainly improve on is that there is no advance info on the dinner menu during the day, so you arrive blind and can't make an educated choice about your dining options on any one day. Our experience from previous cruises had taught us to avoid the buffet as much as possible and eat breakfast and lunch also in the main dining room. This was exactly the same here. Breakfast there was the same buffet choice each morning which was perfectly adequate but could have got repetitive for any more than two weeks, but was improved by a choice of British, American, Norwegian, Spanish etc. breakfasts which could be ordered separately. Lunch was by order and the only meal which on two occasions was very slow to be served. We only ventured up twice to the buffet for "special" lunches - a supposedly typical German lunch - so,so - and a Spanish paella lunch - quite good. On both occasions it was a nightmare to try to find somewhere to sit and eat. A small slightly quieter section of the buffet is set aside for the extra cost pizza meals which we used one evening and it was OK but no better than being downstairs in the main diner. There is also a special restaurant, the Medusa, on Deck 10 which tried to give off a very exclusive air. Mere plebs like us were not allowed in. I think it might have been possible to eat there for something like 40€ a head extra, though whether the menu was any different or better was hard to say. One issue which seemed to cause a lot of upset to some passengers was the way Costa charges for absolutely every "extra" - including items other cruise lines would consider basics, such as water with lunch and dinner or coffee after either (in the dining room). We were bombarded on board with offers for all sorts of drinks packages as well as the chance to pay extra for lobster, steak etc. Most fellow passengers seemed to be on one or more of these packages, but we didn't get one as you have to both buy the package for it to work. As my wife doesn't drink much, it worked out much cheaper for us to pay as we went e.g. for the odd cocktail, beer, lots of bottles of water and bottles of wine I got at dinner and made last for two or three days. While it is certainly galling to have to pay for a decent coffee after a meal and especially water with it, our view was that you have to work out the overall cost with the cabin and even paying for all these extras it still worked out much cheaper than other cruises would have been.(One piece of advice. Join the Costa Club on Day One. It doesn't cost you anything and you get 25% discounts on some drinks e.g. bottles of wine and 50% off some of the extra cost meals.) Our fellow passengers were the most internationally-mixed group we have travelled with before. Out of over 2000 passengers I was told only 18 were Brits with probably a similar number from the USA. So if you are an English native-speaker you have to adapt and quite rightly so. The largest group were French speakers, most of whom boarded in La Réunion. There were also many Italians and other Europeans. Announcements were therefore always in Italian, French, English, Spanish and German. As linguists, my wife and I had no problem with this. In fact it made it interesting to sit down at breakfast and lunch and talk to all sorts of people from several different countries. The multiplicity of languages does have some logical repercussions however on activities the ship can provide. It restricts the number and depth of "interest groups" which can take place. Despite this, we were pleasantly surprised that there was a very good craft group which met twice a day on ship days for about 30 minutes and my wife said it was very interesting and well run (by Corrado, an Italian with enough languages to keep everyone in line). Jean-Christophe, the resident destinations lecturer, gave good background talks on each of the destinations which he repeated to different audiences in English, French and Spanish. We only attended a few of the shows. mostly pleasant if not scintillating singers with mainly Italian, French and Spanish song repertoires. Also some quite good acrobats. The Osiris theatre itself is quite impressive over three floors and had very good sound and light effects. I went to quite a few of the quizzes, mostly picture-based questions to avoid the language issue. There was a good rep, Laura from Scotland, for the designated "English speakers" - which in effect meant everyone who was not French, Italian, German or Spanish. (They got their own reps as well). Otherwise information for each coming day is provided quite late each evening in the "Diario di Bordo". This comes in the various languages. However, what we did miss was a daily news print-out relevant to your home country in the various languages. All other cruises we have been on have provided this. Internet was available at the usual high cost, but we found we couldn't get the Costa system to work anyway, so gave up and just waited till we got to ports to log in. The gym was very adequate and mostly not too busy. I always like to walk round the deck and although you can't do that completely on Costa Mediterranea, you can manage an almost full circuit of about 500 metres on Deck 10 - easier in the early morning before all the loungers are out! The ship's decor takes some getting used to! It is very gaudy and completely over the top at times. So it's best just to laugh along with it. It is certainly geared up for lots of bars and dance floors. I found it strange, though not a problem, that all the main rooms, casino, theatre, restaurant were concentrated low down on Decks 2 and 3 with the majority of cabins higher up. Movement around was usually very good with an adequate number of lifts and disembarking at the ports was faster than I had expected. I can't say much about the ship's excursions as we just took the one which was really just a 20€ coach ride to drop you off for a few hours in St. Denis on La Réunion. Other people I spoke to complained about the cost of excursions and often their content too. We always try to be independent. The destinations were very good, also the fact that we had three overnights each allowing two consecutive days of sightseeing. On the Seychelles we drove our own hired car for the two days which worked out well. On Madagascar we had trips pre-booked with a local agency which took 5 of us in their minivan with English-speaking guide and were really enjoyable and instructive. On La Réunion on the first day we bartered with a minivan driver and 7 of us had a full day round the whole island and up to the Cirque de Salazie, fantastic views. So how to judge the overall experience? With the little niggles I have mentioned apart, I have to say we thoroughly enjoyed it. We had a balcony cabin for the first time, managed to find enough activities to keep us amused, met some great people, were satisfied with the food and, dare we say it, rather enjoyed not being in a totally anglophone environment for once. Yes, it's true that Costa is not as refined as many of the other cruiselines and if you are a stickler for "refinement" you will be disappointed. But it does what it sets out to do pretty well and at an amazingly reasonable price, much lower than we could have found for any other cruiseline plying these waters. So would we go on Costa again? If the itinerary were right, certainly. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
I do not normally write a review on cruises. I do always rely on my other half to do this. I have read so many bad and negative reviews about Costa which I was not very keen to sail with them this time. I have traveled a lol, done so ... Read More
I do not normally write a review on cruises. I do always rely on my other half to do this. I have read so many bad and negative reviews about Costa which I was not very keen to sail with them this time. I have traveled a lol, done so many cruises with Royal, Azamara, Cunard, Princess and so on. You just imagine how well they are by name. So I was quite worried to embark on Costa Mediterranea due to my experience with the best ones on the sea. I cannot praise to anyone to give a go, to try it at least once. It was amazing. We sailed this month and we went to the Norwegian Fjords. The ship was glizzy, beautiful though. It's like a Las Vegas Hotel if we want to compare to something. It's not new but no old at all. It has got that sparkle which it makes everything good to be on. We were for 10 days and we enjoyed everyday. We are definitely going back again. Also we have found out that Costa had a free shuttle from Amsterdam (from a station to the port, which no so many cruise liners do that.... On the other hand I just would like to pointing out few things.... We do feel citizens of the world, Costa is a multicultural environment and of course we do not expect everyone to speak with the same accent or this perfect English. Sometimes demand is it perhaps we do want this or that in our own way? Why cruiser just accept what it is without making huge fuss? The only problem is some the passenger itself which they do not know what it does mean respect. To be honest criticize and write a bad review to a cruise company is easy but sometimes we should ourselves understand why sometimes things don't go how we want. Perhaps we expect too much, we treat badly those people who are really working hard on board for us. Just be nice, try to see yourself on the other side and just think how you would like to be treated, perhaps your perception will change a bit. I can't personally knock anything down. It's us we should respect each other when traveling. That's my personal opinion. If you don't like it then you can go with Silversea, Seabourne, Oceania where you pay a high standard rate and you get what you really want. Sorry to be harsh but we just need to stop winging and criticise everything. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
We wanted to go to Norwegian Fjords cruise for quite a long time so, when I saw this cruise on special promotion and checked its itinerary, we bought it the very same date. Itinerary is very important as many cruise ships just stop at ... Read More
We wanted to go to Norwegian Fjords cruise for quite a long time so, when I saw this cruise on special promotion and checked its itinerary, we bought it the very same date. Itinerary is very important as many cruise ships just stop at major cities where you should take local fjords tours, which are pricy as everything in Norway. This cruise had excellent itinerary, I could not wish to be better. First of all - it started in Amsterdam harbour, which is in about 40 min taxi from Airport. We took this opportunity to explore town of Harlem, with is absolutely beautiful and provides very different experience in compare to crowded touristic Amsterdam. Embarkation was fine except one of our suitcases was never delivered to the cabin and we picked it up by ourselves, staying lonely by the elevators :) First ship impression - WOW! we never saw such kitch before. Do not believe anyone, who wrote this ship design was impressed by Italian castles. It was rather impressed by Gipsy kings houses and made by people, who never saw anything produced in Italy :) Despite its design, ship is very well structured and its quite easy to get where you want different ways. On-board experience - Costa cruises do promotions on their cruises very often, so never buy their cruise full price. In return everything on board is PRICY. Drinks are expensive, photos - very expensive, paying restaurants - expensive and price for SPA is over expensive. As result service staff is busy whole day, trying to catch customers for their services. Looks like Stambul market a bit and annoying as well. On the other side, you can always say no, which let you control your expenses. Only thing you can not avoid is ironing, which is expensive as well, and they do not let you to iron things by yourself :) Its strongly recommended to buy wine and water package as soon as you are on board or in advance. Internet - Costa has great option for unlimited Facebook, Instagram and messengers for only 5 Euro per day. Dining - though buffet on the upper floor was mostly disappointing as mentioned in many reviews, menu breakfast and evening dining at the main restaurant was superb! Dishes were on top restaurant quality and we really put on weight during the cruise as could not miss any course, some times asking for the same dish twice for the evening! 5 stars to the chef! Our evening waiter really provided us top service possible. Same time room service was good at the beginning, but starting from the middle of the trip made it worse and stop doing anything, even cleaning at all for last two days. Probably he expected to get a tip after two days? Needless to say he did not get anything. For excursions we used local company called Norwegian Excursions which I'm glad to recommend. Unfortunately we decided to use Costa Excursions for Stavanger and Bremen and it was complete disaster. First of all you can not neither complain nor get any refund. Excursion desk is always full with unsatisfied customers, but its written in their terms - no refund in any case, except full cancelation of the excursion by local provider! Costa acts as local provider agent and in case you are not satisfied with your experience, Costa may provide you with local provider details and you may send your complains directly to them. Costa sold us Fjord trip in Stavanger, stating its going to be small boat cruise, you'll go behind the waterfall with this boat, while sipping Prosecco with nice music, observing fjord though its glass roof. In fact local provider gave us a transport ferry, which is not even close to the promised small boat and not suitable for any excursions at all. Needless to say, Costa did not provided any refund. Excursion in Bremen lasted only 2 hours, despite this day stop in harbour is over 6 hours - I think they just save on buses. Best solution was just to go to harbour shopping center with local bus. Fellow passengers complained on other excursions as well.. Some did not book any excursions at all, always choosing the ones in local ports - good idea! Ship has very good disco room, which starts to work as disco at midnight acting as teen zone before this time. Entertainment was mostly different dancing performances which is not in our style, though Roberto Sinagoga signing performance was really impressive. Animators team was great and do perfect job! Summary: If you buy your cruise with discount, avoid Costa Spa and excursions, there is good possibility to enjoy Costa cruise even with few cocktails every day. Tipping your cabin attendant at the beginning might be a good idea. Quickly on ports - Bergen - nothing to do except little old district and tourist fish market, If weather permits, take funicular uphill (buy tickets through internet to avoid cue) and hike up there - they have beautiful nature trails there. Stavanger - considered to be most beautiful city in Norway. Probably it is. We downloaded map of Stavanger graffiti festival and did our own city quest searching for different graffities - it was amazing! Alesund - Troll wall is not quite interesting, and troll road is a must! nothing to do in town itself, though we do good shopping of local tourist equipment in local outdoor outlet. Geiranger - Just took standard excursion, which should including mount Danisba (or something like that) and 7 sisters view point. Avoid hope on bus - it won't take you there. Olden - Piece of glacier you see is quite small though road to it is fun despite crowded. You can get there with Norway Excursions as well as take excursion in the harbour. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
We picked this 9 night Norway Cruise for it's ports, not for the ship, as part of a celebration for our son's high school graduation. We splurged on a panorama suite for a little more room and services since there were 4 of us, ... Read More
We picked this 9 night Norway Cruise for it's ports, not for the ship, as part of a celebration for our son's high school graduation. We splurged on a panorama suite for a little more room and services since there were 4 of us, my husband, 18 yr old, 1 yr old and myself. We reviewed all Costa's shore excursions prior to sailing and through research determined we could do most of their excursions on our own or through another company for half the cost. We booked 0 excursions through Costa and did all sight seeing and excursions on our own. Ports: BERGEN: We easily walked from port to town while walking by colorful houses to Floyen Mountain funicular (lift/gondola). Once on top, beautiful views await with easy walking trails, friendly goats and playgrounds galore (don't miss the wooden one in the trees to the left when you get up there. There's a little zipline that's part of the playground too). Definitely a spot for all age groups. Go there early as the lines get long for the funicular. Cost was reasonable, about $20 round trip. You can also hike up and down at no cost, but it's not for everyone and I would rate it difficult because of the incline and length to get up there. HELLESYIT: we didn't dock. Stopped for an hour for the views. You could only get off IF you booked an excursion that took you to the next town, Geiranger. At the high cost, It didn't sound worth it. GEIRANGERFJORD: coming into this Fjord is the excursions. Save your money and wake up early (by 6am) and watch the majestic waterfalls and ridges roll by as they narrow while approaching Geiranger. At port, we checked out a few port shops along the water, walked around towards town (about 5 minutes) and walked backed. It looked like you could rent a boat there for a few hours. That would have been fun. It ended up being a very overcast day. We ended up back on the boat somewhat early for a nap. ANDALSNES: My favorite! I originally wanted to take the train excursions Costa had on the Rauma Railway but at almost $200 a person, I thought not. I found the train actually had a website of it's own, but the tickets were sold out for that date and time (Costa's excursions bought them out no doubt). So we rented a nice car for $60 and went to all the same places on the excursions, literally following the train as it paralleled the road we drove (a huge cost saving and so much better than fighting for space with all the other tourists). MUST SEE Trollstigen (winding, steep road with waterfalls to a beautiful mountain top park with easy trails to overlook). Come back towards town and drive up the other side along the Rauma River to Romsdalen. On your way take a side road off the beaten path for a few minutes. We saw moose and an incredible unattended roaring waterfalls. OLDEN: we took the local bus (turned school bus after 3pm) for a few NOK (maybe $10 per person round trip) to Briksdale Glacier. You must do this early to allow for time to get there and for walking the park and return before the buses stop running. There was no cost to get into the park, just for the shuttle cart (big golf cart) to bring you towards the top of the park to avoid some uphill hiking. We loved the 1 hour walk up and the challenge. Bring a raincoat or sweater, it does get cold (you're walking to a glacier). STAVANGER: We really wanted to do the Pulpit Rock excursions with Costa, but again $200 a person was ridiculous. You can do it on your own for around $40, if you're in port a full day. You just need to get up early and be off the ship to catch the 1 hour fairy over to Tau and bus to Preikestolen Mountain. Once there, you'll need to leave at least 4 hours for the hike (add more for decreased fitness level) and plan what fairy you need to be on to return to the boat in time. We missed this opportunity because we stalled getting off the ship. Instead I watched jelly fish swim along the boat docks as we walked into town with LOTS of SHOPPING. We eventually decided to WALK to the swords. I definitely recommend NOT doing this. It was easily a 4 mile/6 kilometer, 2 hour walk through the neighborhood, a park and along a highway, with nothing special to see, only to get there half starving, take a few pictures, with just enough time to figure out how to get a taxi in the middle of a very residential area back to the ship. DON'T DO THIS! Wake up early and get to Pulpit Rock. BREMERHAVEN: port is far away (20+ minute drive) to the city. We stayed on the ship. Language: They announce in 5 languages. It doesn't seem annoying as they do it quickly and efficiently. The cruise director will announce in the 5 languages as well. The crew generally understands english. The majority of the passengers I interacted with spoke only Italian or another language besides English. The boat: decor. Lots of colors, but very clean and tasteful. Hardly felt us mice through the Norwegian waters. Bars/lounges: didn't usually have to wait long when ordering directly at the bar. Sometimes lounge seat service took a bit. Bar staff was accommodating and willing to try to make what you wanted off the menu. Mark at the lounge was good at understanding drinks off the menu. Dont expect a typical Cadillac margarita as they don't squeeze the lime/lemon fresh, they use a mix which they say is lemon juice with sugar added. The best Margarita I had was with their fresh squeezed orange juice. They put the best duo singing band (2 guys) that play mostly American songs in the worst lounge. It's not a bad lounge it's actually really comfortable, but the walk way to the MDR and elevators separates the stage/bar from the seating so everyone is always walking through. Any of the ships other lounges would have been better for this. Theater: very nice 3 story theater. Lower level walk in on the first floor and multilevel (with stairs) highback chair seating on the others. All offered pretty good views of the stage with some piller obstructions throughout. The first two rows are reserved for suite guest, with no specific seats being assigned relating to your cabin. They can be taken 5 minutes before showtime by anyone. Staff does not monitor the reserved seating. The show's are about 90 % Italian related and they sing about the same in Italian. Tips: download the Costa app on your phones prior to the cruise. For some reason Norway would not let us download the app ( it was unavailable in your area). Butler Service: We did not receive an orientation from our butler (Julio). He never told us what services we could use him for, I believe in part due to the language barrier. We struggled a bit when we'd try to order drinks from him, but he always tried really hard to understand. We call an extension on our phone and they either take our request or more commonly, send the butler to find out what we'd like. One morning I ordered two hot chocolates with the person at the extention. The next day I ordered it at the extension and she said it was not included, even after telling her it was yesterday. She sounded irritated and said "mama is there anything else?". I said, I guess just orange juice. It was definitely included as we had their best drink package and butler service. Three days before cruise end, we were given a second butler that explained the services included. Club Restaurant: Medusa was the highlight of the service we received. Kind staff when dining with a 1 year old made all the difference. Kevin, Julie, Neal... made sure we got good service and were always chatting with the baby when he got fussy, many times avoiding having to leave as the baby responded happily to them. The food was usually good. I asked the servers what things looked better on the menu as it was hard to tell by the name what would be good. One night they had lobster bisque, it was anything but. More like cream fish broth gravy. I know they have limited ingredients to make a variety of things, but sometimes the food names on the menu are not exactly what we know that item to be. So just ask a lot of questions prior to ordering at the restaurant to avoid disappointment and food waste. Most servers are happy to explain if they can understand your questions. Restaurants/buffets: this cruise had very selective hours for their buffet. It seemed they were only open 2 hours for dinner and not until 6pm, if you were hungry between 3 and 6, room service was generally the only option. I'm used to having food available 24/7. Everytime I went to the buffet, I had to wait in line about 5 mintues before I could get any food. I also struggled every time to find a table. Pizza from the buffet area cost extra. They act like it's a specialty restaurant. Spa: the spa was complementary for suite guests. We were under the impression that we'd each just get one day at the spa, but was informed that we could go everyday by Christine (english speaking guest relations). The have a co-ed jacuzzi, just like the ones on deck. Each male and female side have their own turkish spa (steam room) and a sauna. They also have nice showers that have multiple side shower heads. Cabin Suite 6158 (Panoramic Suite): We comfortably fit 4 of us. Our 18 year old on the couch bed, our 1 year old in the provided crib and my husband and I in the big bed, which was easily a queen, if not bigger. The beds were more on the firm side, with a bit of pillow top mattress that was very comfortable. *Room disappointments We booked this based on Costa's websites layout of the room. It showed there was two lounge chairs on the balcony AND a table with 4 chairs. There was no table. So we were not able to comfortably have meals on our deck as we had liked (especially with the baby). It also stated a jetted tub was in the bathroom which is a another BIG reason we booked this room. For me to relax and to be able to easily bathe the baby. When brought to their attention the women at the service desk offered to give us a free phone call to pr travel agent. It wasn't our agents fault, we used Costa's website to decide on the room based on features THEY LISTED. Finally a supervisor called us and apologized saying they did remodeling and it looks like the website was not updated to reflect that. There was no offer to move us to a room that had those things or to credit us a bit for the inaccuracies. They did not make it right and I felt like we were bait and switched on the room. Especially having paid more for this suite to include those things. Intedore Drink Package: included all drinks $9 or under. Kids Activities/squawk club: I only know of secondary room for 3 and under. They have a nice clean space for babies to crawl around and play with electronic toys, legos, trains and foam alphabet. This room has a bathroom for changing and toilet. They had a variety of the same two electronic toys, however only one out of 7 worked. When I asked staff, they said they don't have a screw driver. I called our butler, he said the cabin steward might have one. An attendant for the squawk club came by and said the batteries die in a day. I said "wow, in 1 day?". He said "well in a few days". I explained they haven't been working since we got on board, that if they have toys they can and should work and all but 1 is working. He said he understood and would fix them. This is the only area my baby has to crawl freely. They stayed dead the entire cruise. Favorites: fresh squeezed orange juice, sligjtly larger rooms in comparison to other ships I've been on. Room steward (Noel) had great attention to detail, keeping the room fresh and clean. Club Restaurant staff were great. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
So a group of 7 girls decided to go on a cruise for one of our friends 40th birthday, only 2/7 people has done a cruise before so it’s an amazing idea on something different to do. We boarded at Barcelona, everything went very smooth, ... Read More
So a group of 7 girls decided to go on a cruise for one of our friends 40th birthday, only 2/7 people has done a cruise before so it’s an amazing idea on something different to do. We boarded at Barcelona, everything went very smooth, the check in staff were helpful and informative, so sat at the bar waiting to be called. After looking at the info the check in desks give we head into our room, collect the cards and walk out. We then go to reception get a drink, go for an explore, then head to the top deck. That’s when it goes slightly downhill, no one knows what to do next, we didn’t know about the entertainment information or the timetable as we were so excited to go exploring we seemed to miss the little pigeonhole right next to the door, I finally understood on the last night. Not Costas fault but it’s not explained very well once onboard the ship. Also being a group on girls on a birthday weekend I think there was a few more drinks flowing than normal. At 6.30 there was a safety demonstration which lasted about 20 odd minutes, then off to dinner for 9.15pm, that was a definite eye opener so very busy, the waiter we had wasn’t at all friendly (although we later found out they can work up to 8 months and that’s without a day off), even I don’t think I could plaster a smile on my face everyday. While dining in the main buffet Michael Jackson started blaring on the loud speaker, then up out of no where all the waiters start jumping about dancing. That was amazing as it comes out of nowhere!! Food was good, although the menu can get confusing as the waiter never did explain that you can order anything and everything if you choose. We all dance the night away and that was a great first night. Next morning with a slight hangovers and an early morning wake up call as someone managed to get locked out of their room and went off with another friend in another cabin, we all shower and up we get for a buffet breakfast. I can see from the choice of breakfast that they do try to cater for different nationalities but the breakfast isn’t great to be honest. I try some pancakes and bacon and that’s it. The coffee also isn’t great as unlike the bars where they have a machine and a milk frother they don’t have in the buffet, so water or orange juice is the way forward, also they don’t have a toaster, and the bread is rock solid. You could kill a bird with it. Off we go to marseille, hmmm next time I won’t bother as there’s not overly a lot to do there, walked around, saw some buildings, forced an alcoholic drink down our neck and back on the boat. lunch at the buffer, again it wasn’t too great, rock hard bread again, some warm focaccia, pasta, and a big lump of beef with potatoes, not great if you’re a vegetarian (I’m not, but 2 of our friends are). Go to dinner at 9.15pm, this time the waiters dance to some latin songs, ver well done again. Then another repeat of the night before, more drinks and dance the night away). The 3rd morning head off to the buffet again, this time no pacncakes, I don’t eat eggs so not a lot to choose from, I grabbed 2 pieces of French bread with cinnamon and some pineapple, that will do. We get off at Savona, 1 MASSIVE tip, other than supermarkets everything else shuts at 1.30 and opens back up at 4.30, unfortunately we have to be back on the ship by 4.30 so we spent an hour walking in a group of 7, with different people trying to find a restaurant just so we can get a pizza, it didn’t go down too well but got there in the end. Back on the ship, more drinks, a lot more passengers so the bar on deck 9 was a complete nightmare, then off we go again. Down to shower, off to the 9.15pm dinner, waited until 10pm to ask the waiter what time will the dancing be on tonight, he tells us there won’t be any, shame, so we all thanked him, 3 went off to bed, 4 of us decided to pop off to the casino. Within half hour our 50€ was spent and off to the bar we go. A few more drinks down our necks an the conversation turned to the bar staff. When we took 5 minutes out of our busy lives to see the amount they work, the stuff they have to put up with, and the hours they work on a daily basis, I’m so grateful for my life. The amount of time they’re away from home, they don’t see their families for months and months at a time. While we go on holiday they’re there at our beck and call when we want a drink or service. So thank you Henry and Danny for that night. So last morning just before we go to Barcelona, we set our alarms to make the restaurant breakfast. I do wish I’d gone there before but to be there by 9 is a bit of a deal breaker, unfortunately again we had a not so friendly waiter and had to be called about 3 times before he would come over to serve, at least it was nice. Back to the room to get our stuff as we had to be out by 10. We decided to go back to deck 9, as we started off from there a few more Prosecco to finish up the holiday, and off we go to the shops, pay our bill at the desk and get ready to leave. As they bleep mine and my roommates cats and unfamiliar buzz goes off, we’re not allowed to leave but everyone else disembarked, so back off to the desk to sort the cards out. Cards done and out we go. The 2 of us are last to pick up our luggage go through everything and my friend realizes she’s had some money stolen from her case. Do not leave any money in your case. There’s signs around saying the same so I don’t know what was going through her mind at that time when she left the case outside the door the night before. You HAVE to leave your cases outside of the room the night before for them to collect it. They advise to leave the cases the night before by 12 midnight and no later than 1am, but I witnessed them not coming until 3.30 am. Do not leave anything valuable at all. There’s always people workers and non workers wandering the hallways so could have been anyone. I also had stuff taken but luckily not money. Anyway other than the little hiccup at the end it all went well. I also missed the last day lunch as I was too busy booking my next cruise onboard. This time as a family, so hopefully the next one will be a little less partying and a little less hangovers. On the last note, be aware that if you suffer from rocking on land, It’s been 48 hours and I still don’t feel great and I’m still rocking and swaying. Maybe I was a little hasty in booking the next one but I’m sure I’ll be over it then. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
We loved the Itinerary ( Enchanted Fjords), the friendly polite staff, the spacious beautiful cabins. (panorama suite). We had most of our meals in Club Medusa Restaurant... the atmosphere was great , the waiters were very friendly and ... Read More
We loved the Itinerary ( Enchanted Fjords), the friendly polite staff, the spacious beautiful cabins. (panorama suite). We had most of our meals in Club Medusa Restaurant... the atmosphere was great , the waiters were very friendly and polite ( Mr. Prasad Fargose and Mr Daniel Perreras). Mr Prasad Helped us to choose the meals that don't contain alcohol or pork . he was very patient with us and very helpful . he also helped our kids to find the meals they like and suggested alternatives in case they don't like what was in the menu . Mr Daniel was very friendly as well , smiling all the time and made our little boy happy everyday by bringing him his favorite chocolate milk . Mr Linnon, the restaurant manager was very helpful , he always came to ask if we were comfortable or needed any thing ... and asked how was the food . One day we asked Mr Linnon for Indian food and we got an Indian feast after two days...especially made for us . we were very happy and the Indian food was super delicious . Our teen son loved the teen club and made some friends there. He met some german and Italian friends who speak english . I also liked the magic bag offer for laundry ( 20 euro for 25 pieces). Costa doesn't have self launderette like Disney. Food in the free buffet restaurant was average ...Costa is Italian cruise but the buffet didn't have daily pizza or risotto or Parmigiana di Melanzane. The available pizza was mostly plain with some oregano . buffet was crowded ... difficult to find a table ...in summary food was average in taste and no variety. Shows were average ...the four elements show was boring ...shows suppose to be family friendly but female dancers were wearing thongs ...not acceptable for me . performers appeared one time with scary make up that really scared my children .We liked the clown show. My kids laughed a lot . we also loved the traditional Italian dance . kids club : I took my kids to Squok ( The kids Club) , the counselors assured me that they will speak english with my kids ...but that didn't happen . I stood in the corridor were I could hear but my kids can't see me . I waited for one hour and didn't here any english word . It was all Italian . my kids felt left out and refused to go there again . I understand that the majority were Italian children thats why I suggest that costa dedicate one hour at least of kids activity during the day to be only in english. Squok was small in size not like disney cruise clubs. our last cruise was with Disney magic . one problem regarding the excursions with costa is that the time of excursion is not announced until the night before the excursion ... so we couldn't plan our day until we receive the daily newspaper of the cruise where the time of excursion is written. I suggest that costa write the time of each excursion in advance I also suggest that costa put Indian as well as Lebanese food frequently in their buffet and menu. Disney magic did that . people love those cuisines . The staff were friendly ... we had no problems with them . the itinerary was great . Norway has beautiful Nature . one good thing about costa is that before we depart Norway , they organized tax refund service inside the ship. We booked a suite so we had free access to Club Medusa Restaurant ... had priority check in , priority when tendering in Geiranger, the exclusive drinking Package that include water bottles , 24/7 free room service with breakfast served in cabin if ordered, a daily fruit basket and reserved front seats in theatre. for internet, costa offers a social media package that includes snapchat , whats up , instagram and facebook for 28 euro for the whole cruise duration. ports Bergen it was a beautiful city ...we took the hop on hop off bus . We booked online from Stromma for both the bus and funicular ride. We found their famous red bus in the port where we exchanged our online vouchers for tickets. we took the funicular ride and went up to Floyen mountain . the view from there is beautiful . you will find there kids playground, a zip line and of course a troll statue ... also you can walk for 5 minutes to a beautiful lake ...you can rent bike or kayak Bergen is the wettest city in the world ...it rains most of the days so you should be prepared . Geiranger beautiful village , we took hop on hop off bus from Stromma . you can also walk around or rent electric car . Olden we booked neon sky lift shuttle with the cable car tickets as well as glacier sightseeing bus from the tourist office in the port. The sky lift is new . it opened in 2017, it is 10 minutes ride from the port to the cable car station then it takes 5 minutes to reach the top. on the top there is a modern restaurant and you can hike if the weather permits. down at the station , theres is a souvenir shop . Glacier sight seeing bus takes you in a tour around olden ... the scenery is beautiful with two photo stops . the tour takes about one hour ...try to set on the right side . you won't see glaciers ... just snow on the top of the mountains. when it was time to leave the port , Olden port workers put a good bye song... loud through their speakers and wave the Norwegian flags . that was nice Andalsness we took excursion from costa for Rauma rail way and the trolls wall . the scenery from the train was very beautiful . Try to sit on the right and choose the big window. the troll wall was just a black mountain with trolls statue near the souvenir shop. Haugasend I didn't like this city . we booked excursion from costa " the marvels of Akafjord" . it was boring and long and nothing new . they took us back to the fjord . we were sailing inside the beautiful fjords for more than three days so there is no need to go back there . the tour included a visit to a local artist who draw flowers on every thing ...boring . then a trip in a small ship to get close to a waterfall ...boring too because in Norway you see a lot of waterfalls everywhere so nothing new. yes this trip included a Norwegian lunch . I tasted the deer hamburger ...it was delicious but little salty. also the Norwegian coffee ...their bread . other selections were available too . Bremerhaven we took costa cruise shuttle to Bremen . it took one hour to get there and one hour to come back . we spent almost two hours as free time in Bremen . it is a beautiful city ... famous for Bremen musicians story. Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
We were just scrolling cruises and saw this one ,unbelievable price ,with just two weeks to sailing ,too good to miss ,so booked it !!! Then I started reading reviews how the crew were surly unhelpful etc...and I thought omg what have ... Read More
We were just scrolling cruises and saw this one ,unbelievable price ,with just two weeks to sailing ,too good to miss ,so booked it !!! Then I started reading reviews how the crew were surly unhelpful etc...and I thought omg what have we done ,and worried for the next two weeks !!!!.... Well , how wrong were the reviews ,or what did people expect ...bowing and scapeing...we found everyone so happy ,glad to help you with anything ... Kelly in reception .. Manuel our waiter ,and Denis always in the restruant with a smile , Eddie our cabin Steward.Saulo, Marvin ,bar waiters ,in fact all the crew ..... The food was very good ,downside ..you had to pay for bottled water at meal times , ...you could ask for anything and they tried to oblige us ..I had mash potatoes every night with my meal (cos I love them ) The cabin were very nice and clean ...downside no tea/coffee making facilities The ship was a bit over OTT ,glass , mirrors , stainless steel everywhere ,but so so clean ,lifts always available,... The nightly shows were disappointing,and not to the standard of P &O Fred Olsen . The ship had lots of nationalitys ,and everyone got along fine ,there was a very happy atmosphere on board ,and I would certainly go with them again ... Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
We chose this cruise especially for the weather in this region at this time of the year. We traveled with a group of sixteen people. Four families with children between 15 and 23 years old.The procedure for boarding and disembarking was ... Read More
We chose this cruise especially for the weather in this region at this time of the year. We traveled with a group of sixteen people. Four families with children between 15 and 23 years old.The procedure for boarding and disembarking was childishly simple and hardly time consuming. You can see that the ship comes at age but everything was in excellent condition. And the staff were visibly busy with her duties throughout the day. As if it were a military operation. Every day I put a fingerprint in the elevator, but within a few hours it was polished away. The ship is equipped with a diesel-hybrid propulsion. This results is an almost vibration-free experience. Noticeably better than all other cruises that we have previously made. And; no soot on the stern as we have experienced on previous cruises. Our cabin (Standard Balcony Hut) was fine, clean and had a spacious balcony. A few more wall sockets may be installed; there is only one wall socket installed at the desk. The dinners and other food on board are of excellent quality and you have more than enough choices. In any case much better than most of us eat at home! What is annoying is that there are many times that all restaurants are closed at the same time for several hours. You can not get anything to eat on the entire ship. This is especially difficult for our children who came out of bed late. You get the impression that it seems to have something to do with cost savings. That is a serious flaw of this ship and different than we have experienced on all our other cruises. In terms of entertainment, there is enough choice for everyone. Nothing special, however. An average experience compared to previous cruises. In general; the staff on board is fine. We had a not so customer-friendly cleaner at our cabin. If we wanted to go to our cabin during cleaning, this man was very irritated to us. The other participants from our group luckily did not have this experience. The Italian staff at the reception was not particularly friendly and helpful. But luckily we did not need that much. Our route took us to Dubai, Muscat, Sir Bani Yas Island, Abu Dhabi and Dubai. Due to a rough sea we unfortunately could not disembark to Sir Bani Yas Island. After a sea day, that was a minor disappointment. The ship therefore immediately headed for Abu Dhabi where we had an extra evening. In Abu Dhabi buses were ready to take us to a shopping center for free. Our children have had a great time on board. This was partly because we were with a group ourselves. I do not think we will choose this ship again for a next cruise. But if it just happens to have the right itinerary for us, then we do not doubt and we choose Costa again. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
Have just returned from short cruise, and was concerned on the poor reviews on Costa Cruises. However, we found very little to complain about, and thought it excellent value. Embarkation was very easy, our premium balcony cabin was large, ... Read More
Have just returned from short cruise, and was concerned on the poor reviews on Costa Cruises. However, we found very little to complain about, and thought it excellent value. Embarkation was very easy, our premium balcony cabin was large, clean and comfortable.The decor on the ship in public areas is rather gaudy, but as someone pointed out, by the second day you didn’t notice it! The food was generally very good, although the amount of choice on the dinner menu in MDR varied from day to day, but always offered at least 5 courses. Had heard through CC that water in restaurants was only served by the glass. This was incorrect on this ship, and a large bottle of water cost around 2euros. Also available was 50cl carafe of red or white wine for 11euros, which was quite acceptable. The evening entertainment was varied, and the standard comparable to most cruise lines eg Princess, Celebrity and P & O. Although not many British on board, there was no problem with communication with the Crew, and we felt that there was a wide age range of passengers.Disembarkation was extremely easy, just walked off at passengers convenience. Would advise anyone to give it a try, and think that most people will be pleasantly surprised. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
I guess we went with an open mind. As they say..." when in Rome - do as the Romans do" so we adjusted our expectations but ended up enjoying the experience of an Italian themed ship - from the over the top Italian decor to pasta ... Read More
I guess we went with an open mind. As they say..." when in Rome - do as the Romans do" so we adjusted our expectations but ended up enjoying the experience of an Italian themed ship - from the over the top Italian decor to pasta everyday with our meals. We were worried after reading the reviews but I realized that North Americans just cruise differently from Europeans...no bottomless ice teas and lemonades, coffees and teas limited to breakfasts and merendas, lots of pasta, but we got to enjoy Osso Buco, gnocchis, bombolones for breakfast, olive oil and balsamic with your bread instead of butter and many more...Honestly - I enjoyed the food more than the other cruise lines that we've been on. Service was up to par in the restaurants and cabin but they can do a better job communicating with the English speaking passengers. First night apparently was an All-White party and we obviously did not get the memo as we showed up dressed in black...hahaha. Enjoyed the dance lessons and live entertainment was available in many of the bars and clubs. Overall - it was a pleasant experience. Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
Our first Costa cruise ,chosen for the ports that we had not been too. The ship is quite large in good condition, clean, with elaborate decor. Most of previous cruises have been with Royal Caribbean. It has some very different policies. ... Read More
Our first Costa cruise ,chosen for the ports that we had not been too. The ship is quite large in good condition, clean, with elaborate decor. Most of previous cruises have been with Royal Caribbean. It has some very different policies. Passengers were mixed mainly Italian French Spanish, only about 250 passengers spoke English, although most staff had reasonable english skills. The most notable was they sold Tea/coffee onboard packages\which suited the europeans. Now to get a cup of tea as long it was before 10am at breakfast or afternoon tea 4-4.45PM. you had to pay about Aus $4+. No tea served with lunch or dinner. Costa wins presentation prize for dinner. Extremely well presented entrees/mains but note they are only small portions, so if you are a big eater etc, you will have to double up. Once your 2 hours were up for your dinner setting they politely shunted you. Interestingly there was no real push to sell wine etc at dinners. Very different to R.C. and other cruise lines. No ice cream available anytime unless you paid. Like all cruise lines, no information is given in advance re port procedures etc. The daily news bulletin was not delivered till at least 7-8 pm the night before with no real info. Embarkation at Barcelona was a breeze as was departure. They did allow you to take wine etc on board at departure only. Our 10 day cruise actually was a combination of 3 itineries. with a lot of passengers joining at Savona, Marsaille (exit at Genoa , Marsaille next cruise). Interior activities were relatively quite with not a lot attendance it seemed. Again quality to me of the artists playing venues across the ship, were pretty average. The main entertainment was better, some good shows. However cruising days, (the weather for the Europeans was superb) drew everyone outside on the deck chairs. Some interesting points. On the decks there was no one pushing drinks even when the sun was out and decks packed. very different to normal cruises At breakfast there was only one point .in solarium, that you could get a cooked breakast. The same for breakfast cornflakes, bran etc. Only one place. You could (depending where you found a seat) walk 40-50 metres. Also other than breakfast , you could not get orange or apple juice. The staff to passenger ratio seemed to me to be much lower than other cruises I have been on. Cadiz , Malaga were the standouts, we took the 13 hour trip to Marrakech (not the costa coach deal) hired our own guide /vehicle (Memphis Tours). Good young driver. Guide in Marrakech spoke excellent english, but as usual they take you to shops (Carpets Furniture, Oils, Antiques jewellery etc). My advice is to be very explicit in telling guide you dont want to do this or that. These diversions do not get mentioned upfront) Long trip by private vehicle and coach is the only way to go. We enjoyed the cruise for the places, but if taking your first or first mediterean cruise, I would take an english speaking ship until you learn the ropes. Weather was superb , except for a force 10 gale, which delayed ship from leaving Marsaille for 2 hours. From Casablanca we took 2 and 1/2 days to sail to Valencia. Crawled really. Got off Valencia 1.3opm all aboard 6 pm . Why shorten the port stay ?? Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
Mediterranea, Magic or mayhem. We have just returned from a 13 night cruise aboard the Costa Meditteranea. We flew with Iberia from Madrid to Stockholm and had a few days in Stockholm before boarding the ship. Below is OUR opinion on ... Read More
Mediterranea, Magic or mayhem. We have just returned from a 13 night cruise aboard the Costa Meditteranea. We flew with Iberia from Madrid to Stockholm and had a few days in Stockholm before boarding the ship. Below is OUR opinion on the ship and cruise. Embarkation. We arrived at Stockholms Fryhamnen cruise terminal using the metro system from Odenplan, a little after midday. We had stayed at the Ibis styles which was basic but clean and welcoming. The metro was very easy to use, even with 2 large suitcases and the walk to the terminal from the station is signposted and took us about 20 minutes. Embarkation had already started and as we are Perla diamente members we were ushered straight through to the boarding/security area, had our photos taken for our cruise card and directed to the buffet to get something to eat. Our cabin would not be available until 2pm. Buffet. We are not really fans of buffets as we prefer to have waiter service and to take our time whilst having a meal. We had an Intendetore drinks package which meant we could have any drink costing 9 euros or less. Our cruise cards had not been collected as they were in the cabin but we just showed our reservation slip and were assured there'd be no problem. There were plenty of tables available as we were the first group on board. We selected what we wanted to eat from a very limited hot choice and from a somewhat confusing layout where different stations serving cold items, desserts, self serve collection drinks area and tea and coffee area are scattered. Donald had ordered a glass of wine which without the package would have cost 5.75€ inc 15% service charge and i ordered an iced tea 3.30€. Halfway through the meal a young lady server arrived and gave Donald a bill to sign which was charging for the iced tea. We again explained we were on the highest drink package level and we could have any drink for 9€ and less and showed her our reservation slip. She told us that it was for drinks by the glass only and as iced tea was served by the can, we had to pay for it. We politely refused and asked to see a manager who re-iterated that in the buffet we could only be served drinks by the glass. To our suprise, other passengers were being brought beers, and other soft drinks, pepsi, orange, 7up etc which were in cans and bottles and nothing was said. We signed the bill but it was never ever charged to our account, so somewhere there was a lack of communication. We only used the buffet area 1 more time and found it to be like other cruise lines, mostly chaotic. Cabin. At a little before 2pm we went to see if our cabin was available. For the first time ever we were lucky enough to be able to get a fantastic deal on a grand suite including butler service. This was for less than the price it would have cost us for an inside cabin on an American/ British ship. There was a longish hallway with huge long table which led to a seating area with settee and chairs. Fully stocked no charge mini bar which was replenished if you asked. One wall was covered in huge glass windows with ocean view with access to a huge wrap around balcony with 4 recliners and 2 chairs and a table. A seperate make up dressing area with dimmer switch lighting.The bathroom had his and her sinks with a hydromassage bath and overhead shower. The bedroom had a gigantic bed with plenty of wardrobe and storage space. Our first steward Fidel we found to be very pleasant and kept the room spotless but his contract was ending in 3 days. The replacement steward Ronald, was very personable and nothing was too much trouble for him, he looked after us very well. The Butler, Dave was also friendly and although we did'nt use his service much, he did leave a contact number. We did have occasion to call him for 2 emergencies. 1. Water was in the bathroom when we returned late at night,Within minutes 7 people arrived and dealt with the problem. Water had collected inside the outer cover of the bath and had overflowed. 2. On our last night, whilst packing, we noticed that some of our clothes were stained and damp. Water had dripped from a cooling vent inside the wardrobe. Dave arranged for this to be repaired and for our clothes to be immediatly laundered. We arranged to have breakfast in the cabin on two occasions. This was delivered by Dave. Service was white glove and prompt and everything we ordered was delivered. You could have all meals served in the suite at no extra charge. Whilst we did enjoy the suite very much we felt that for us we would not have liked to have paid the full asking price so unless we get a very special deal again, i doubt whether we'll get a full suite again. Because we have reached Costas top tier of their loyaly programme regardless of what cabin we choose, we get 1 Laundry service, free collection and delivery of luggage from our home (within western europe) Breakfast at no charge in the cabin. Exclusive use for ALL meals in the club restaurant. 75€ obc, reserved seats at shows in theatre, day spa use (where available) plus some little extras. We feel this is good enough for us. Restaurant and meals. On the Costa Meditarranea we had most meals in the club medussa restaurant. Breakfast was serve yourself from a cold buffet and/or a waiter service themed hot breakfast, choice of American Spanish Norwegian German Belgian or English style breakfasts. Omelletes and eggs cooked to order available. Lunch was a help yourself cold buffet station with salads cooked meats cheeses and various seafood treats including on 1 day a delicious Lobster salad. You then had a choice of several hot and cold starters, Mains and desserts. Dinner consisted of waiter served hot and cold starters, Pasta, a selection of entrees, cheese, and desserts. All of our meals whilst not high gourmet were better than what we would eat at home and there was always something you could eat. Food whilst not served really hot was not served cold and was very appetising. Service was fantastic and our Main servers Wyam, Trang and Karin were an absoloute delight, indeed all the staff in the Club medussa are a credit to Costa. Most passengers in the restaurant were extremely friendly with a very international mix. French, German, Spanish, Swiss, Russian, Italian and a very few native British. We always looked forward to meal times and had so much fun with our fellow comrades. You could of course always opt to eat in one of your other assigned reataurants or the Buffet, pizza or grill. Buffet breakfast was continental only. Drinks are charged for unless you take a package. This includes Water tea coffee except for meal times in the buffet. Bars and Drinks. There were plenty of places to get a drink from however when the ship was reeally busy especially sea days, service could be a little slow but if you are patient somebody will come. Drinks on average cost no more than in a 4 star hotel or theme park. We dont really drink a lot of alcohol but there are some delicious non alco cocktails which cost about 7€ plus 15% service on ALL drinks. In order to help with drink package versus pay as you go here is an approx example. Based on some alco drinks Morning. 2 cappucino at breakfast 6€ mid morning coffee 2.24€ non alco cocktail 6€ Lunch and afternoon. Glass of wine 5.50€ 1ltr bttl water 3.50€ after lunch coffee 2.24€ alco cocktail 8.25€ evening pre dinner sherry 5.50€ glass of wine 5.50€ after dinner port 5.50€ total pay as you go 50.23€. Brindiamo drinks package (ship branded drinks no alco cocktails) 26.99€ Pio Gusto package (ship branded drinks including alco cocktails) 29.99€ Intenditore Package (premium branded up to 9€ drink.) 45.99€ Prices are per person per day. Prices are inclusive of 15% service. All of the bar staff we encountered in the lounges were friendly and all had a smile. Entertainment. The entertainment team were very friendly and they had the usual ship board activities from craft classes to port talks during the day. Not as much as on the American/ British lines, but i can never be bored with people watching, chatting, reading and charity crochet. Evening entertainment ranged from theatre production shows (very good) guest artists (very good) Disco and musicians in various bars around the ship.We found all of the music on this cruise to be very good. The Ship The Costa Mediterranea was kept spotlessly clean and the crew all worked hard constantly.British and American passengers may find the glitzy decoration a little overwhelming but it grew on us. Meal times are a little later than these passengers may be used to especially second seating and the buffet closes earlier, which for us is a good thing (less waste) There is a compulsary 10€ pppd service charge that can't be removed. In all honesty we find this a fair system and dont begrudge paying this at all. We have NEVER received enough bad service to warrant removing this charge. You may encounter the odd person but this in no way should stop payment to the vast majority of the staff who look after you so well. The passengers on board are mainly from Western Europe and some may not speak english. A few local words and a smile and gestures will open conversation and you will be greeted with a wave and a smile should you next encounter them. We got really friendly with Maryvonne and Claude a delightful French couple who we hope will now be friends for life. We had such a laugh with them and looked forward to meeting up with them throughout the voyage. The ports. Ports visited were Stockholm. Copenhagen, Amsterdam, Harwich, Le Havre, Vigo, Lisbon, Barcelona and Savona. As we had been to these ports on many occasions we only took 1 excursion. Hornfleur from Le havre. It was a charming town which we both fell in love with and would visit again in a heartbeat. Conclusion. Was the Costa Mediterranea magic or mayhem. There was a little mayhem especially in the Buffet area but on the whole it was magic and we would sail on her again. It did'nt capture our heart as much as the Costa Neo riviera Our favourite ship. We have previously sailed with P&O and Princess and had very good experiences with them but we have grown to love the Costa brand and the glitz. We have never received bad customer service and any problems have always been dealt with efficiently and friendly service even from Costas sales office where Simona and Amanda have looked after us so well. Our next cruise is back on the Diadema which is 2nd favourite and then we are giving the Costa Victoria a try. Thanks for reading and whoever you sail with Happy Cruising. Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
For perspective, we are an American couple in our 50's. We booked this cruise for the itinerary of almost all places we had never been to before. We are now "empty-nesters" so this was a chance for us to travel off season ... Read More
For perspective, we are an American couple in our 50's. We booked this cruise for the itinerary of almost all places we had never been to before. We are now "empty-nesters" so this was a chance for us to travel off season and enjoy each others company. We chose to embark on the late side to enjoy some more time in Barcelona. After maybe a 10 minute cab ride from the Duquesa Suites we were at the port where we found embarkation to be quick and efficient. As non-EU resdidents, our passports were held for the cruise and returned to us the morning of disembarkation. Also, Costa's terminal in Barcelona is beautiful, lots of natural light. Coming back, disembarkation was very well organized, but since we were disembarking at the same time as everyone else there were some lines. Operationally, the cruise was excellent. Always punctual, and the ship is kept very clean. The decor is "loud", but we liked it. Especially liked all the sculptures in the main atrium of the ship. Food wise, pasta and appetizers were always good, but proteins were not. The only proteins we enjoyed were the extra cost burgers and the duck on gala night. Fish seemed to taste "fishy". We ate in the club restaurant one night, service was outstanding, but the filet had an off taste. It was however cooked a perfect medium rare. Salads on the buffet were always very good. We chose open seating, this worked well for us as we almost always ended up eating early. Later on, there were lines to be seated. Piu gusto drink package was a great value. Wines were good, as were cocktails. Espresso every bit as good as on land in Italy. Entertainment staff keeps things fun. The white party was the best I've seen at sea. I was a participant in the "Voice of the Sea" which was also a lot of fun. Shows were below average for a cruise as were lounge entertainers. The multi-story gym, with a hot tub in the middle, was the nicest I've seen on a cruise ship. All varieties of cardio equipment, weight machines, and dumbells. One nice touch, they had an English speaking (from England) customer service rep who always asked how things were going and genuinely seemed to care. Overall, service was not great. Many were rude or indifferent in the dining room, bars, and customer service desk. However, shout out to Ryan, the English customer service rep, Rina our outstanding cabin steward, and Michael the wonderful bartender on Deck 9 aft. Would I take Costa again? For the right itinerary at the right price, sure. All Cruise lines have their pros and cons--Costa's strong points are fun, pasta, and espresso in my opinion. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
My wife and I had heard and read very mixed reviews on Costa but this cruise which included flights and a two night stay in Venice at a very affordable price booked through Cruise Nation looked too good to turn down. Even had the ship been ... Read More
My wife and I had heard and read very mixed reviews on Costa but this cruise which included flights and a two night stay in Venice at a very affordable price booked through Cruise Nation looked too good to turn down. Even had the ship been like a budget hotel on sea the itinerary was great so we had a chance to visit Croatia and Montenegro for the first time. Well, our expectations were significantly exceeded. Some specifics - we paid for an inside cabin, we got upgraded to a balcony. Our account was credited with two free cocktails on the first night, a nice touch. The bed was excellent. The entertainment surprisingly good. With one or two exceptions the Costa staff we engaged with were friendly, professional and service oriented. The food - especially in the buffet restaurant - was very good. There were a few niggles - the main restaurant food was often a little colder than it should have been, but Costa had decided to give the waiters small tablet computers to record orders on our cruise and there were the obvious teething troubles. Costa has a different approach to the mainly US based cruise companies we have sailed with in the past and the passengers were mainly Italian and French with some obvious language issues - it's amazing how many foreign language words you can remember when you have to (!) - but overall our experience was very good. Read Less
Sail Date November 2016
So this was the first time we've sailed on Costa so we went in with fairly low expectations (Due to other reviews, the sinking of Concordia and crash of Classica) and we only paid £210 for the week. But they exceeded expectations and ... Read More
So this was the first time we've sailed on Costa so we went in with fairly low expectations (Due to other reviews, the sinking of Concordia and crash of Classica) and we only paid £210 for the week. But they exceeded expectations and were better than some other cruise lines we've been on. We've sailed Princess, HAL, RCI, NCL, CMV, Carnival and MSC. This Costa ship and experience was substantially better than our last cruise which was the Carnival Miracle to Hawaii (Same type of ship, Vista Style.) Pro's : - Embarkation was the quickest EVER. Most people were boarding the next day in Trieste, so very few in Venice. But it took about 5minutes from dropping bags off to walking on the ship, very impressed - Itinerary, which was what we came for (Trieste, Dubrovnik, Kotor, Split, Corfu, Katakolon) No full days at sea, a couple of half days. They had to switch Dubrovik and Split due to bad weather but it was well communicated and we gained hours in Dubrovnik for losing a few in Split. - Ship is very well maintained, so much better than Carival Miracle which is actually newer ! It's clean, tidy and bright - Breakfast buffet is different to most American ships as it's more limited but more European. - Lunch buffet although not huge, it's just right with a good selection and never any queues. Much better than Carnival lunch - Dinner was great ! If you like Italian food then you'll love their 5-6 course evening meals. Really nice. Only down side is that they seem to have a lack of staff so the wait can be long some times. I imagine this is how they can keep the costs down - Cabin - We booked a guaranteed inside and got a free upgrade to Balcony. Great cabin, loads of space and a good size balcony and bathroom. Just a bit dated now though. - Lounges - Lot's of places to get a drink, relax and unwind. - Our room steward was really good !! I realise that you have to pay gratuities as they are not optional like other lines, but the staff were definitely worth it. - Gym, pools, hottubs, sauna and steam rooms are great and all free. - Everytime we left port they would play Con te partiro by Andrea Bocelli over all the ship outdoor speakers which was a nice touch. - We were early to pretty much all ports and left bang on time too. Well organised and planned Cons' - Limited entertainment and in about 5 languages, so makes everything seem a bit detracted and less personal. - Drinks are ridiculously expensive. Go for a drinks package if you drink 3 or 4 a day - Food could be hotter in the buffet - Most announcements were in Italian which was sometimes awkward. But all staff spoke English, many of them as their first language. - Not much to do in the evenings or when the ship is at sea. Not as many bells and whistles as some of the newer bigger ships, but more traditional cruising. Overall a much better experience than Carnival and CMV, but not quite the same as most of the bigger American lines i.e. NCL, RCL and Princess. But for the price it was totally worth it and I would recommend sailing Costa for a unique Italian experience. Read Less
Sail Date November 2016
Our family had a fantastic time apart from a couple of points. Venice departure point is amazing. Embarkation was quick. The ship is lovely and always being kept clean by the hard working staff. Cabin is quite big. The food got a bit ... Read More
Our family had a fantastic time apart from a couple of points. Venice departure point is amazing. Embarkation was quick. The ship is lovely and always being kept clean by the hard working staff. Cabin is quite big. The food got a bit repetitive and queuing system at buffet not very good. The service in the restaurant was very slow, should have an early dining time for families with children. Entertainment shows were excellent but again the times were quite awkward. Kids Club was excellent especially Francois. There was one member of staff who was quite rude and ignored my son and tried to teach a 5 year old German!! Entertainment during the day could be a bit better. Parties at night and food demonstratations were excellent. The guest relations manager and some of the staff on reception were very rude. Overall we really enjoyed the cruise and are planning another one. It is excellent value for money. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
It was for our 40th anniversary. We had never been on a cruise and we absolutely loved it. We had a wonderful suite at the back of the ship with a large deck. It was spectacular. Of course now we had already raised the bar to the top so we ... Read More
It was for our 40th anniversary. We had never been on a cruise and we absolutely loved it. We had a wonderful suite at the back of the ship with a large deck. It was spectacular. Of course now we had already raised the bar to the top so we will have to lower it for future cruises, I am sure! But it was worth every dime. The crew were lovely. We knew what we were getting into with an Italian ship vs. American and we wanted the European experience. Almost everyone could speak English, some a little hard to understand, but we worked it out! The ship was gorgeous. A review I read said gaudy, but it was beautiful in my regard. Lots of Murano glass. The food was spectacular, the wait staff exquisite on the 10th deck restaurant, and special cudos to Jenifer. She was exceptional in every way, a good soul in and out. She was very intuitive and kind. Lots of great dancing music. The shows were spectacular, the theatre space was wonderful. My spa experiences were great. I would recommend Esther for a wonderful full body massage. I would absolutely recommend Adella for a pedicure. She was great. I have a hard time with a pedicure as my feet are particularly ticklish. She was able to massage and scrub away and I had no problems with tickling. We had a little trouble with the air-conditioning in our cabin the first day or two, but staff was very attentive and made sure it was fixed. We loved the fresh fruit in our room everyday. The ports of call were great. We didn't get to Katakolon because of bad weather, but we experienced such a great time at the other ports we did not miss it. Of course I would rather have been safe than sorry. Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
We have just returned from a wonderful 7 days on the Costa Meditteranea sailing from Venice to Katakolon and return. We also sailed during the week of a storm so had an extra day in Corfu but have nothing but praise for the staff. We ... Read More
We have just returned from a wonderful 7 days on the Costa Meditteranea sailing from Venice to Katakolon and return. We also sailed during the week of a storm so had an extra day in Corfu but have nothing but praise for the staff. We are an English speaking retired couple who travel quite a lot. At no time did we feel that as English speakers life was more difficult for us on the Costa Meditterannea. It is an vibrant, friendly, Italian boat - we felt that added to the charm. We met smiling, happy staff who were trying their best. We also asiled during the week when there was a dramatic storm which prevented us form reaching Katakolon. Winds reached in excess of 80km/hr. Despite this, the boat was extremely stable and we hardly felt any movement. If you are reading this and worried about some of the negative reviews, don't be. We found the staff to be excellent : nothing was too much trouble. We asked for ice in our cabins once and from then each morning and evening the ice bucket was filled. Similarly, we asked for butter for our bread at mealtimes and from that day, butter was always on the table. The service standard was outstanding. My husband has a disability and staff were incredibly considerate and kind (not always the case!). The vessel is large and at times noisy, but there were lots of quiet places to be found. The decor is 'bold' and different .... let's say unforgettable! It was spotlessly clean throughout though and everything was extremely well organised. We opted for the early sitting for dinner and asked for (and got) a table for two. The food was above average and at times excellent. It was regional Italian and each day's menu allowed you to choose from a wide range of dishes. At the end of each meal, I chose the regional cheeses which were delicious. Breakfast is either cooked (in the main dining room) or buffet style upstairs. Cooked breakfasts were regional (English, American, Norwegian etc) and cooked to order. The lunchtime cafeteria style buffet always offered fresh grilled fish, salads, pasta etc as well as the usual suspects: hot dogs and hamburgers. This area is large and often noisy but we learnt to eat later and avoid the rush - perfect ! We never felt that the options were poor, they were completely appropriate for a mid price range ship. Everything was cooked well - nothing was inedible. We opted for a drinks package - cocktails (and everything else!) all day. It was by the glass, but glasses were always quickly refilled. It was good value Evening entertainment was okay. Some shows were a bit 'end of year performing arts'... but others were professional and extremely enjoyable. We had interconnecting superior cabins on the 7th deck. They were large and with uninterrupted views. I would be careful about some balcony cabins on the 5th floor as they had larger balconies but were overlooked by the upper decks. Furnishings were a bit brash but completely functional and very clean. We researched the ports thoroughly before we left. Trieste: We found the Tourist Information in the main square ( a few minutes walk from the boat) and hired an audio guide for a few Euros. The walk lasts about 3 hours. There were lots of places for an Italian lunch in the sunshine. We saw several Italian weddings taking place and were invited to stay in the cathedral to watch one. Split. We were within easy walking distance of the town and had brought maps with us. It was hot and crowded but we loved it Dubrovnik ; This was our only paid tour. We took the cable car high above the town and a walking tour around Dubrovnik. It was wonderful. Very hot and crowded though and not much time there (half a day)The port is a short drive form the town and the boat organises a transfer for about 11 Euros. Corfu; We had booked a Hop on Hop Off Tour with City Tours before we left GB. It was cheap (about £8) each and stopped right outside the port (10 mins walk). It gave us a tour of the island and dropped us in the old town centre. There were many places for a fabulous seafood lunch, more shopping then an easy walk back to the boat. Kotor. The ship glides along a fjord for a couple of hours before you reach Kotor and the transfer is by tender. It was a charming town, seemingly untouched by the numbers of tourists. We chose to stay on deck for a couple of hours whilst the boat made its way out of the fjord. Gorgeous scenery Venice Gliding past Venice in the evening and, on our return, in the early morning was completely magical. Every inch of the boat was lined with passengers taking photos and absorbing the atmosphere.. Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
We wanted an Adriatic cruise with great destinations and ports. This cruise delivered spectacular views and 7 ports of call. The positives included the amazing food and service at the restaurants. The shows were excellent as well with the ... Read More
We wanted an Adriatic cruise with great destinations and ports. This cruise delivered spectacular views and 7 ports of call. The positives included the amazing food and service at the restaurants. The shows were excellent as well with the singers and dancers being professional and enthusiastic. Best stops included Split, Corfu and Venice. Sailing out of Kotor was a great experience to watch the boat maneuver through the fjords. Announcements were in many languages which you expect for a European cruise and it became quite easy to manage after a while. The staff are courteous and professional and helpful in every circumstance. The boat is very beautiful and brightly decorated. The ship has started to charge for late night food and for things like pizza so that was a turn off. The pools were small and constantly overrun with children as were the so called hot tubs. Even the adult only pool was crawling with kids as young as 3. These are things that the ship and company could fix and earn a much higher rating from me. Overall a very good experience Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
Travelling independently we flew from Stansted to Trieste airport, which is around an hour from the city. A bus from the airport to the city costs around 6 Euros and leaves half hourly, it delivers you to the bus station which is adjacent ... Read More
Travelling independently we flew from Stansted to Trieste airport, which is around an hour from the city. A bus from the airport to the city costs around 6 Euros and leaves half hourly, it delivers you to the bus station which is adjacent to both the rail station, taxi stance and local bus terminii. Rather than pay top whack for a city or riverside accomodation for a 3 night stay we opted for a very cheap option costing £104 for 3 nights at the hotel /restaurant Sonia just oustside Trieste, whilst not the most salubrious area it was only a 20 minutes bus ride from town. Bus tickets giving an hours travel when validated in the machine on the bus cost 1 Euro 35, they can be bought in a host of shops in town. Trieste I found to be much more elegant than the city of Genoa, I prefer it. Boarding on the Saturday morning was a revelation, despite having a boarding time of 2pm we pitched up at the terminal shortly after leaving our hotel at 11 am. Bags were taken from us and we were asked to come back at 12 so we spent an hour at a cafe over the raod from the terminal.On returning we found that despite Trieste being a major departure port there was none of the massive queues experienced previously with MSC at Genoa or Venice, quite the opposite infact, we were onboard and in the buffet before 1pm with our cabin available complete with luggage shortly after. The whole boarding procedure was so much quicker and eaier with Costa than with MSC. The Costa Mediterranea is a fair sized ship, perhaps not quite as massive as the new MSC ships, but certainly bigger than MSC's older ships, it seemed similar in size to Cunard's Queen Victoria and Royal Caribbean's Brilliance of the Seas both of which were berthed alongside in Venice, it also measured up against TUI's Mein Schiff 2 which we seemed to follow around the Adriatic. The ship looks more traditional compared to some, however the inside art decor was a little OTT for me, whilst it hit you on first viewing it certainly didn't detract from the enjoyment of the cruise. Whilst the Mediterranea certainly didn't have the elegance and bling of the large MSC ships I must say that I thought its lounges looked and felt better. Despite its peculiar internal decoration the Mediterranea won over MSC because you felt that you had so much more space in the lounge areas, even when busy of an evening with events you never felt crowded out and could see what was happening on the dance floor in front of you. Costa also won over MSC at mealtimes, in the main. Only on one day of the cruise was the buffet very busy at lunch and even then a table outside was found after a short while. The buffet itself was quite pleasant with different sized tables and booths inside and a host of tables outside. Lunch offerrings were similar to MSC but I thought that MSC offered more choice in the buffet options, the food however was always good. The breakfast buffet was never the trial that MSC's breakfast is but that is probably down to the splitting of the 2 offerings between buffet and restaurant. If you are happy with a continental breakfast, cerails, fruit, ham and cheese, bread and cakes it is the buffet for you. If a cooked breakfast is required it is served in the downstairs restaurant. We tried this once and found it busier than the buffet, it's offerings were not as good as MSC's either. Where MSC do have the upper hand is the availability of food in the buffet at most hours, this is not the case with the Mediterranea, neither does it have tea and coffee available 24/7 in the buffet. We resorted to having a pot of tea delivered by room service of an evening, at no extra cost, the ability to make a mug of tea and take it to the cabin was something that we missed. You'll also find that the Mediterranea has no ice cream concession onboard, neither did it have ice cream on any menu! There is nothing in the way of speciality restaurants on the Mediterranea, saving a burger bar and pizzeria, if you're looking for speciality dining this ship is not for you. The main restaurant was a revelation, old fashioned it may look with its balcony looking down on diners below but having asked for a table for 2 we were surprised to find we got a table for 2. Costa are trying hard with their restaurant service, it might not quite be there but it's not far off, it is generally good with only some very minor niggles if we were to be particularly picky. Personally I prefer the 4 course Costa menu over the 7 course MSC menu and I enjoyed 4 courses every evening. The choice was not as large or as varied as MSC's, however the quality was good. My partner had one or two issues with the choice available but I found I was catered for. The Costa menu raised some questions as it is very open and honest in identifying food that had been prepared on shore, is this something that other lines do and are equally open and honest about? The noticeable difference between MSC and Costa is the dress of diners, whereas on MSC diners will dress for gala dinners I found I was the only diner in a dinner jacket, it won't be going with me next time, smart casual suffices for Costa whereas I would dress more formally for MSC. There was only one gala dinner, with a rather restricted choice of menu compared to MSC, there was a White night, an Italian (Red, Green & White) night, a 50's / 60's night and a mask night, there was no baked alaska night, what there was though was some fun with staff performing and leading a conga. My gripe with Costa would be the lack of formality, not only in a dress sense, seeing people pitch up in flip flops, shorts and tee shirts, but also the fact that people arrived an hour late in some cases! You'll also find the obligatory photographers appearing during your meal, although not as often as during dinners on MSC which was a relief. The cabin, balcony on deck 7, I found to be a good size and was always well serviced. There was ample room for a sofa bed affair in the cabin. The balcony had ample room for two chairs and a small table. Smoking is allowed on Costa balcony's using the ashtrays provided on the bulkhead. I found the shower, although having a curtain rather than being a cubicle gave me more room than on MSC and I never once touched the shower curtain it was that spacious, the showe was good too. Smoking on the Mediterranea was limited to balcony's and specified locations on the decks, whilst these locations near doors allowed a bit of a smell of smoke to come inside you didn't have to walk through a foggy and smelly smoke filled casino as we've done previously on MSC. The big disappointment was the entertainment in the theatre, it wasn't to my taste and dispite not enjoying MSC's offerings much there entertainment appeared to be better than Costa's. Having sat through all of MSC's shows we only stayed for the entire duration of one show on this cruise. It just wasn't my cup of tea and didn't float my boat which was a bit disappointing as the theatre was good. The big winner was the cruise and its destinations. Trieste we explored ourselves pre-cruise, taking in the tramway and a boat trip up the coast. Split : We had a morning and afternoon in Split which we found to be very busy, the square outside the church and Diocletians' palace being full to capacity. We explored the old city ourselves on foot having toured the basements of the palace. One thing to note, the coloued glass we bought from one of the myriad ofcraft stalls in the palace basements was not Croatian but was marked as being an import from Indonesia, all is not always what it seems, but the craft stalls are worth a look. Dubrovnik : We had a morning in Dubrovnik which gave us enough time to do the cable car at leisure having walked the walls on a previous visit with MSC. Like Split we found Dubrovnik to be very busy, unsurprising as there were Costa, P&O (Oceana) and TUI's Mein schiff 2 in port. Katakalon : We had an afternoon / evening in Katakolon which we had also visited before, we found that whilst the village hadn't changed the shops had, they were more upmarket than before and prices had risen noticeably since our last visit a couple of years previously. Corfu : We had a morning and afternoon in Corfu and were a little disappointed with it. We chose the most well known hop on hop off sightseeing bus only to find that apart from the port stop there were only 3 others, sights would be described then sailed past without the chance to get off, stupid! We wandered around the old town shops but found them very expensive compared to elsewhere,I know the Greeks have problems but 5 Euros for two scoops of ice cream is taking the biscuit. What was noticeable was the huge piles of rotting and smelly rubbish left out on the streets due to a strike, it wasn't pleasant to walk past at all, one half expected to see rats amongst it.We did visit Kanoni as a stop on the hop on hop off tour and found it worth finding the stairs down to a cafe at the waterside, it's only when you're there that you realise the airport runway is adjacent! Kotor : We only had a morning to explore Kotor so done so ourselves on foot wandering round the streets of the old town. Again Mein Schiff 2 was also in port so it wasn't quiet, but it was a revelation and sailing out of the fjord kept us enthralled for a good couple of hours, spectacular. Venice : We had a full day in Venice, 9am to 9pm and again explored ourselves on foot for a fair part of the day opting to take the waterbus to St Mark's and back rather than use the people mover and walk in as we had done previously. On our last day in Trieste our flight wasn't until gone 5pm so we opted to take an excurion to put in a few hours, we're glad we did, our trip to see the Postojna cave was much enjoyed. Having taken the excursion we disembarked earlier than we would have otherwise so can't comment on the disembarking procedure as compared to MSC's long winded process of sitting waiting your turn. We returned by bus from the coach station to the airport as we had arrived. On arriving back in Stansted we found the border had a queue and a lack of working gates which caused a delay, there was an even longer delay awaiting baggage, around 45 minutes, not good. So, the opinion is this was our best cruise and most enjoyed. Costa compared favourably and in some cases better than MSC. I'd do this cruise again to take advantage of the destinations and the tours offered by Costa. Would I sail with Costa again – yes, would I sail on the Mediterranea again - yes. To be clear my comparison is with MSC's; Splendida, Fantasia, Divinia and Musica. Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
We were a little worried due to some of the negative reviews that we read but are very happy that we went - my husband and 7 year old boy. We chose this cruise because we wanted a true European experience and we definitely got it! :) ... Read More
We were a little worried due to some of the negative reviews that we read but are very happy that we went - my husband and 7 year old boy. We chose this cruise because we wanted a true European experience and we definitely got it! :) There were only 52 Americans out of the 3800 on board. We also really like the ports that this cruise offered, not the traditional stops. The service as fantastic. The fact that people embarked and disembarked at each port made our embarking and disembarking very easy. There were not the huge crowds with everyone trying to get on and off the ship at the same time. The announcements were made mostly in Italian followed by English. Our balcony room was very nice and clean. The cabin steward was amazing! Made towel animals for our son which he loved. The dining options were good, we like casual so we ate at the buffet a lot. A lot of pasta!! There was a small buffet set up for a traditional American breakfast if you are craving scrambled eggs and bacon, but the European buffets were great! We read that you have to pay for water at dinner- you get water for free with dinner. Have to pay for soft drinks, cocktails etc...just like most other cruises. Excursions- we went on our own at most ports but there were English speaking tours available - make sure to specify that. The one we took to Portofino was Spanish and Italian but the guide was very kind and gave us the important information in English. Loved it! Great Experience, definitely would recommend this cruise and go again! Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
My review is written in 2 sections for reasons that will become apparent. I'm reviewing the service and food etc, then an incident that had a major impact on our trip. This is our 5th Costa cruise. Despite what is written by ... Read More
My review is written in 2 sections for reasons that will become apparent. I'm reviewing the service and food etc, then an incident that had a major impact on our trip. This is our 5th Costa cruise. Despite what is written by others we have always had a great holiday. Yes, there are issues, things aren't quite what is expected, the management are surly and short (not height!), but that happens with many holidays, not just cruises. And perhaps many things are down to language differences. Booked this a month after the last one, in November last year. Got an excellent price and the Euro was cheap. We book it with a travel agent in Italy and got on board credit as well. Was looking to get an outside cabin, I am aware that on Mediterranea the outside are behind the life boats, but they are like a balcony. Sliding door and all. But....they are categorised as Classic and for breakfast and room service, we need Premium! The price of a premium Balcony was too good to miss. We flew Ryanair to Treviso the night before, after school finished! Got there around 22:30. Stayed opposite the airport. It always amazes me that here in UK we have such tight security around airports but in some European destinations, the terminal is doors off the main highway! We walked across the road to the (cheap) hotel. (Reviewed as are many things from the cruise, on Trip Advisor). Up next morning, breakfast on the street looking in the terminal and waited for our transfer. With smallish kids and luggage for 12 days, (we were staying on after the cruise), I couldn't face bus and train. Transfer arrived on time and we were in Venice at 10:30 at the terminal. Boarding was from 14:30 so we left the bags and went into Venice for a walk around. Many must have done this as were given a boarding number, 4, to present on our return. Took the boat ferry bus to Venice, that's not cheap! Enjoyed our walk around, bought a few bits, were amazed at the amount of water traffic. Headed back from a different ferry bus stop as we walked so far! And had our first Ice Cream!!! Back at the terminal for 15:00 and we were on the ship in about 15 minutes. It was busy but with the number 4, we were waved through. First stop lunch. Then the cabin, it that was made up for 4. Standard Costa cabin, room enough for us but mental note that as the children get bigger, we might need 2 cabins...... We were one person short this year as the eldest decided at 18 not to come with us.......or we would have had 2. The Mediterranea is decorated out in an amazing fashion. Its surreal!! I think its the best Costa ship so far. Has to be seen to be believed. Odd figures dotted around everywhere, very Gothic. Very over the top...typical Costa and thats why we go! Now here is one controversial bit. We usually go all inclusive drinks. But this time my wife said lets not...lets get the packages for soft drinks and water. buy anything else. Have to confess, we aren't big drinkers and we would drink more because it was included! But we didn't need a bottle of wine a day....etc. I was sceptical. I didn't want to worry about drinks but she won the argument so we purchased 40 soft drinks around 110 Euro i think and 15 bottles of water 35 Euro i think. If we needed more water we could fill up at the dispensers, Ice in the room from room service. We had asked for early dining, but found our cards said late. So we went to the dining room and the man in charge looked at the girls and adjusted it with no problem. Last time we had to join a throng and wait for hours...... Food at dinner was as always, great. Lots of choice. Except for the children. The childrens menu is a little restricted, but saying that, the 7 yr old always found something in combination with the main menu. The 10 yr old ate from the main menu each night, always enjoyed it. And this is where I started to see, my wife may be right not going all inclusive. Each night there was a wine special. Generally half price. So I bought a bottle every other night, drank half and the rest was waiting for me next day. Bottle of fizzy water and still plus soft drinks. Take the water away if any left. I was also surprised that the kids started to request water not soft drinks! But no ice cream for desert. Ridiculous, no ice cream for the children's menu. A cost saving too far. So our first day was perfect. Good and everyone was as always, very attentive. Woke up in Trieste. This place is so close to Venice I find it an odd choice for next day. I think we could have been there in a n hour or 2....but if you look at the route we take, we go out into the gulf and meander around for a while!!! Then into Trieste. Ship docked in town. Walked through town, more ice cream, stopped and watched a wedding party, made our way to the Tram up the hill. Nice trip, interesting rife, great views. Had lunch at the town and made our way back to the ship to walk along the waterfront, looking at jelly fish in the water. Nice stop. We always dress for dinner....its a tradition, off we went, had another good meal. Woke in Split where we had arranged a private tour with bike tour and sea kayaking. Had a great day, picnic lunch on the way, did many firsts! Normal routine in the evening, dinner, cocktails, some non alco others normal, show, walk around, outside, then bed about 11. Kotor next, again ship docks in town, I mean right in town! Not here long, so walked in old town, coffee, ice cream, shopped. Back on for lunch and off we go. Very scenic sail out, sat on deck as the girls were swimming and wife baking, this really is the life! It was on this night there was a very strange and unfortunate incident. Not the crew who were looking after us, but the officers and Captain. It made the rest of the cruise a bit difficult but I will list it after this and scoot over the rest of the cruise. Katakolon, visited Olympia, walked off the ship and booked a local coach, 10 Euro, kids free. Interesting place! Normal routine on the ship in the evening. Corfu was a nice day, we walked to town, took about 20 minutes. Had lunch and just walked around seeing sights! Dubrovnik we didn't get off, arrived early and away by lunch. Seemed a waste of a stop for the ship really. Nice to relax on board. As we were independant, we got off the ship in Venice at around 11:30, had breakfast and snacks, then off to a beach holiday for a few days. Couple of other comments. The shows were typical Costa. Easy on the eye, just good all round stuff. The singing was a bit off, but hey, I'm on holiday and it was good to have dinner and a show, we saw them all except 1, when we felt we couldn't listen to the off notes any more!!! We knew what to expect from previous and got what we expected! The room steward was nothing like the other cruises. We aren't early risers, rarely get cooked breakfast. (That's another bug bear, too early finish for cooked!). But he was knocking at 9 saying he needed us out to make up the room. I explained he couldn't as were still in it. So he looked at me as if I was mad! Off he would go....only to come back 10 minutes later....you have to go!!!! He got the message eventually, broke an ornament we purchased in Venice (he told us), no folded towels. I think he didn't like it! But I also don't think he is representative of cabin staff. Now, the incident. My children are very media aware. The study news at school and watch TV. They have watched disaster movies, have heard about the Concordia when everyone asks us what ship and we say Costa! The 7 yr old is a nervous cruiser...she thinks we might sink. The 10 yr old similar but lesser, age makes it better i think. They like to be in control! So the first few days she is listening and looking....but eventually it goes away. Life boat drill is always trauma, lots of noise, lots of people. I don't think its done very well, as I am tall I am separated and put to the back of a line and they are small so they go to the front. They both cant be next to my wife. It needs done, I'm happy for that. I also sit them down and give them a brief about not leaning over...where we go....what to expect. That sorts it! We left Kotor going to Katakolon. I showed them the map, its a straight line down the sea, nothing on our side of the ship, just water! Simple. We went to bed at 23:00 as always and they were asleep in minutes. I leave the balcony door open to hear the sea and feel the breeze, the weather was still and calm. I dropped off about midnight. At about 01:00 we were woken by the ships horn blasting. I knew that's not right, it jolted me awake and I guessed something was up for this in the middle of nowhere in the middle of the night. It is very loud. I decided to have a look outside, see what I could see. Imagine my horror to look out on the balcony to see a cliff. It seemed only a few hundred metres away. I looked down and could see we were making way forward, and at that moment the emergency sound went off in the cabin and throughout the ship. Go to lifeboat station. The ships horn continued to blast, the go to muster stations alert was sounding. Its piercing as it needs to be. By now the children were distressed. That's an understatement. I actually thought we should be far out to sea, we had come in and were about to go aground. I grabbed the life jackets, put them on the kids, looked outside the cabin and others were on there way. Just as I managed to get them sorted, the sounds stopped. Dead silence. Nothing. What should we do. To try and see where we were I put the TV map on, far from being at sea we were in a narrow channel between mainland Greece and Corfu. I turned the forward camera on thinking perhaps a ship was in front of us, nothing. People were now still in the corridor and faces were looking out the balcony railing on the ship. After 10 minutes, a voice, the off note singer, came on and said only in English it was a false alarm and good night. As you all know, Costa have many languages, English is usually 2nd or 3rd. So now, the very few English people knew something, but not the French, Germans, Italians. After another 10 minutes, other languages came on one at a time. And they kept saying it for an hour or so as I don't think people believed them. Im not suggesting we were off course, they can sail any where they want, just I wasn't expecting it having looked at a map of a route. It seems they usually go between the many islands. But like I say, I nearly had a heart attack to look out and see in someones lounge. We never heard another thing. No information about the cause, nobody wanted to talk about it. I asked officers when we saw them, which isn't often, they shrugged shoulders and walked away. It was like it was a dream, only it wasn't. This incident caused our children to want to sleep in life jackets that night. It took a long time to get them to sleep, and each night after, was trauma to get them to sleep. Daylight was fine, Breakfast, lunch, swimming. All normal. It would start at dinner. Any strange sound, which you will get on a ship, any vibration out of the ordinary, they would start getting nervous. The dining room is right at the back of the ship, I have to say, there was more vibration and resonance than other ships we have been on, that would not help. And as soon as it was bed, the 7 yr old was terrified. I don't want to say it ruined the cruise, but the effect was devastating on all of us around her. Its not her fault, that's how she felt, she would eventually fall asleep and we would wake to her crying. And that never stopped until we got off. And my wife and I were helpless to give her confidence, there aren't many places to go in the middle of the sea. The 10 yr old was affected but not so much, but when the small one started it set her off too! If we had been told what happened I think it would have helped. But the fact it was ignored was an error. Interestingly she said that on previous cruises, the Captain has been seen in many different places, being kids they think he is the boss! They have always said hello to him and the Captains have been good enough to have conversations. This time no Captain anywhere. I believe he did go to the Costa Club evening for a quick picture, we didn't make it. I think this is a mistake on Costa thinking. The Captain is a figurehead, they seem to be separating the hotel side as the main part of the trip, the ship is just a method of transport. No weather charts up as it always was, no route charts displayed as before. It seems they want to sell a hotel holiday. So that's our cruise. A tale of 2 cruises. Would we go again, that depends, I have written to Costa and lets see their response. We are Pearl club members so they can see we cruise a lot with them, it would be a shame for this to ruin that relationship. Plus where would we go next..... Time will fade the memory for our children, and I love cruising! Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
Costa is a good provider of fun, food, pleasure. While the quality of the shows has deteriorated and the experience of the Medusa Restaurant was embarrassing, the overall ship is to die for... the service is as usual, excellent. Must ... Read More
Costa is a good provider of fun, food, pleasure. While the quality of the shows has deteriorated and the experience of the Medusa Restaurant was embarrassing, the overall ship is to die for... the service is as usual, excellent. Must admit, the creativity of the four star chef was not top-of-the-mark. Now then, they have changed the drinks package. So if you get the 25 euro a day rather than the 29 euro, your disappointment factor will be high. What is advertised, what you find on the table provided menu cards versus reality - well good luck, And getting into an argument with the bartender will only frustrate the issue, especially when you have the paperwork in front of the two of you. Beware! Costa is Italian. Each port was as are ports today, full of tourist shoppes, tourists and if you think I would pay 17 euros to walk to Dubrovnik wall, you must think little of me. We don't take the cruses just for the stops, they are at best secondary. Our reason is the ship and she is a beauty. Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
This cruise exceeded all our expectations. Accommodation, ship, staff and the food was simply some of the best I have had on my dozen cruises. The passenger make up was mainly Italian, but few English but many English speaking foreign ... Read More
This cruise exceeded all our expectations. Accommodation, ship, staff and the food was simply some of the best I have had on my dozen cruises. The passenger make up was mainly Italian, but few English but many English speaking foreign nationals. My one concern was safety. We attended the lifeboat drill, were actually some of the first there and led our line. It was disappointing to see some of the staff pay scant attention to what was going on and chatting during instructions in languages other than Italian. It also went on for 45/50 minutes, far too long. But hey when your most infamous ship is Costa Concordia why not? However, a day later we received curt letter asking why we hadn't turned up for the drill. We told reception we had been there and had time dated pictures to prove it (our family insisted we didn't miss it because of ship's reputation and we sent them pictures). They told us not to worry, but next day another letter asking why we missed a second drill and ordering us to watch something on tv and sign a form to say we had...and so it went on - and we got more and more cross. Repeated visits to reception ...to get off our backs, and while it might be considered admirable to pursue this - apparently staff should have swiped our cards on the day to show we attended. If it hadn't been an exercise they might needlessly be looking for us when we were on deck in line where we were supposed to be. Staff were very lax. So Costa clearly not learnt their lesson. Much to improve in safety marshalling. The rest was awesome and drinks package worthwhile. Really fab cruise, we managed Savonna, Milan on extra time plus Valencia (good), Palermo (dump), Naples (superb), Palma (lovely), Barcelona - speaks for itself. Entertainment was superb. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
Costa Mediterranea Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabin 4.0 N/A
Dining 4.0 3.2
Entertainment 3.0 3.2
Public Rooms 4.0 4.1
Fitness & Recreation 4.0 N/A
Family 4.0 3.7
Shore Excursions 5.0 N/A
Enrichment Activities 1.0 N/A
Service 4.0 3.7
Value for Money 4.0 N/A

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