2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
This was our third cruise with Oceania. We have also cruised with Azamara, Windstar, HAL, NCL, Louis, Katarina and some river cruise operators. This cruise was 18 nights, from Shanghai to Yokohama. We flew into Shanghai, arriving the ... Read More
This was our third cruise with Oceania. We have also cruised with Azamara, Windstar, HAL, NCL, Louis, Katarina and some river cruise operators. This cruise was 18 nights, from Shanghai to Yokohama. We flew into Shanghai, arriving the night before. We stayed at the Sofitel, which was easy to get to via train from Pudong Airport. Embarkation was smooth. In the early afternoon we got a taxi from our hotel to the Shanghai Port International Cruise Terminal. This terminal is very conveniently placed not far from the Bund area of Shanghai. The Nautica was looking fine. We had an inside cabin on deck 8. We are happy with an inside cabin, as we spend little time in the cabin, and deck 8 is a convenient position. Our room stewards did a good job. We do not understand why people rave about the excellent food on Oceania. We ate in both the MDR and the Terrace Café and found the food to be consistently bland and unexciting. This was on a par with previous Oceania cruises. The best night was the Asian evening in the buffet. We were supposed to have 2 dinners each in the speciality restaurants Toscana and Polo Grill. I tried to book these online as soon as bookings were available to us, but it is virtually impossible to get any early booking for a table for 2. I was only able to book for Polo Grill on embarkation day prior to sailing. I regularly tried for cancellations on board and eventually got a booking in Toscana for the last night. Any second bookings were impossible. In our opinion the meals in the speciality restaurants are tastier than those in the MDR and The Terrace. We like the space called Horizons. This is where we sometimes sat in our free time. There were 2 lecturers. One did 2 lectures on People Watching, neither of which we attended. The other lecturer did a few destination related lectures. We went to the first one, but did not find it particularly interesting so did not attend any more. We attended a few of the concerts, which were okay. Many we knew would not be to our taste. There was just one sitting, at 9.30pm, which was a bit late for our liking. We did enjoy the string quartet which played in the Upper Hall each evening and we regularly attended these. The Oceania excursions are overpriced. We had some included in our cruise price. Sometimes, depending on the port and the public transport, it is just convenient to use one of the cruise line excursions. We did several ports on our own, and enjoy doing what we want to do at our own pace. Disembarkation was straightforward. The Osanbashi terminal at Yokohama has luggage lockers and we made use of them before using public transport to get to Narita Airport. Oceania is not our preferred cruise line, but they have some interesting itineraries. Itinerary and timing are always our major consideration when choosing a cruise. There was a lot of new territory for us in this cruise, which we enjoyed. Ports: Shanghai: We had an overnight and then a day in Shanghai following embarkation. There was a shuttle operating to the Bund, making it easy to do things in that central area on your own. The subway in Shanghai is also very easy to use. Xiamen: One day in this port is really enough, but we had an overnight stop, and 2 days. We did 2 Oceania shore excursions. We had been warned that the guides may not have very good English, but that was not the case. The first woman was young with excellent English. The second was a bit older and had more of an accent which was harder to follow. They both did a good job. The first day in Xiamen we went to Quanzhou, which is about a 90 minute drive from Xiamen. We visited the Kaiyuan Temple, which is quite extensive, and has 2 impressive stone pagodas. There are also several museums adjacent to the temple. We visited the Quanzhou Song Dynasty Shipwreck Hall. After a Chinese multi course lunch at a local hotel we went for a walk down one of the main streets, Tumen Jie. Here we saw the Qingjing Mosque and the Taoist Tonghuai Temple. The tour was okay, but we felt it was quite a long drive there and back for nothing particularly outstanding. The second day we did a tour called Tong’An Treasures. It was about an hour’s drive from the port in Xiamen to the Confucian Temple in Tong’An. After that we went to the Fantian Buddhist Temple. These were both interesting sites and we felt this tour, while shorter, was more worthwhile than the trip to Quanzhou. We were back at the cruise terminal about 1pm. Hong Kong: We had 2 half days here, each side of an overnight. Hong Kong public transport is easy to use and we have been there before, so we just did a few sites on our own. Kaohsiung: We docked about 10am. There was a shuttle which ran to the centre of town, but the timings did not suit us, to fit with our tour. Our Oceania tour did not depart until 12.30pm, so we had some wasted time waiting for it, but there was nothing much to see close to the dock. Our excursion was called Glimpses of Kaohsiung. Our first stop was Lotus Pond, a man-made lake with many temples and pagodas around it. Very touristy and a little tacky. Next stop was the Confucius Temple, then a drive to the Cijin (Qijin) district, which is the oldest part of the city. We walked along the uninspiring beachfront then down the main street, which was lined with mainly food stalls. Keelung: We did an Oceania excursion into Taipei. It included far too much time in the Palace Museum, leaving little time to see much else in Taipei. If we ever returned to this port we would probably catch the train into Taipei on our own. The cruise port is right in Keelung, a short walk from the centre of the town and the railway station. Ishigaki: We did an Oceania excursion, which was a drive around the island. Not much here to see. There was a shuttle from the ship which went a short distance to a ferry terminal – not sure how useful it would have been. Okinawa (Naha): We went into Naha on our own, using the monorail system. It is easy to get up the Shurijo castle using this public transport. It is about a 20 minute walk from the port terminal to the nearest Yui Rail station. The Oceania excursion to the castle was an exorbitant price. We checked out the main shopping area (Kokusai Dori Street) on our way back to the ship. Also stopped at the Fukushuen Garden which is near the cruise port, and well worth visiting. Nagasaki: The cruise port is close to the city. There is a tram system, but we just walked and covered quite a lot of ground including the Peace Park, churches, temples, cathedrals, Spectacles Bridge. Had a great day and saw a lot at our own pace. Hiroshima: We did an Oceania excursion, which was a fast ferry to the island of Miyajima. The ferry was just for cruise passengers and left from next to where the ship was berthed, so it was convenient, if expensive. Despite the fact it rained all day this was a highlight of our trip. We were just disappointed that the ship didn’t arrive earlier in the morning so we could have gone into the Peace Park as well as doing Miyajima. There was a shuttle that ran from the ship to a shopping centre and into the centre of Hiroshima. Kobe: We had 2 days here. The first day we did an Oceania excursion Highlights of Kyoto. It was about 100 minutes drive from the port to the Kinkakugi (Golden) Temple. We were given 90 minutes here, which was too long. There is not actually much here. You cannot go in the temple – you just walk past it, through the gardens. Then there are lots of souvenir shops. We were then taken to a Japanese Restaurant for lunch. Nice restaurant in a pleasant garden setting. Meal nicely presented, but not too our taste, with a lot of raw fish. The afternoon stop was Nijo Castle. We were only given 80 minutes here, which was not long enough. There is not much to see in the “castle” itself, though the building is quite impressive. The grounds are extensive and the cherry blossom was just beginning to bloom. There was minimal time for the gardens, but we dashed through them and covered quite a lot before a quick stop in the souvenir shop. Our second day in Kobe we did Oceania’s Panoramic Osaka tour. It took a little under an hour for the drive from the port to Osaka. It was a public holiday so the roads were quiet. We visited Osaka Castle, just the outside. It was quite a long walk from the bus park to the castle and we were only given 45 minutes here, which was too short. There are lots of photo opportunities in the grounds, as the castle is quite picturesque. Next we went to the Umeda Sky Tower, where we went up to the open rooftop on the 41st floor for great views over Osaka. After the quick look at Osaka we were back at the ship about 1.30pm, so we used the ship shuttle to go into Kobe. Went to the observation deck on floor 24 of the City Hall for the views, then to the impressive Ikuta Jinja Shrine. Wandered the streets and shops a bit before returning to the ship about 5pm, in deteriorating weather. Yokohama: We did an Oceania Highlights of Tokyo tour. Traffic was dreadful and it took 2 hours on the bus to reach the Senso-ji Temple in Tokyo. Very busy, impressive temple. Adjacent is the Nakamisedori shopping street. Then we had lunch in a Japanese barbecue restaurant, which was quite pleasant. Next we went to the Meiji Shrine. There are extensive grounds around this shrine. We just had time to take the shortest route through the forest and the shrine. Because some people got lost returning to the bus, which delayed our departure from Meiji, we had the 50 minutes we were supposed to have at our next stop cut in half. So at Tokyo Tower the 25 minutes we were given was barely long enough to get to the top of the tower, take a few photos, and get straight back down. We could have had a bit longer, as the traffic returning to Yokohama was much lighter and we got back to the ship in less than one hour. I think you really need to stay right in Tokyo for a few days to do it justice, but we had no time to extend our holiday beyond the end of the cruise. After an overnight we disembarked in Yokohama. There are luggage lockers in the Osanbashi terminal building and we used them so we could spend the morning exploring the port area of Yokohama. They have really made an effort in this town, with pleasant gardens along the waterfront. We also walked through Chinatown and went up to the observation deck in the Landmark Tower. We had an evening flight from Narita, so in the afternoon we collected our luggage, and walked up to the Nihon-dori Station to catch a train to Yokohama, then the Narita Express to the airport. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
We loved our previous cruise with Marina and wanted to try another Oceania cruise. We selected this particular cruise because it was exactly the itinerary we wanted. We had been to Japan before but wanted to spend time in Kyoto and ... Read More
We loved our previous cruise with Marina and wanted to try another Oceania cruise. We selected this particular cruise because it was exactly the itinerary we wanted. We had been to Japan before but wanted to spend time in Kyoto and Tokyo, and we wanted to return to Hong Kong and Shanghai. The itinerary was exactly what we wanted. It also helped knowing that this cruise line quite often provides transfer to the port city centers free of charge. After Marina, it was difficult for the Nautica to compete. The food was good, better than any of the other five or six cruise lines we have used before, but not Marina-quality. The service excelled. Far, far better than other cruise lines, and there is no "nickel and diming" which was the reason we stopped cruising previously. Our cabin was quite well-maintained. We will be cruising with Oceania Nautica again, in January, which tells the tale. However, I must agree with others that the Destinations planning, lack of shore information, and the tours needed a lot of work. Our ship excursions provided guides that did not speak English well, no hearing sets were provided although there were very large groups on the excursions, and the excursion groups bumped up against other excursion groups on the same ship. Although the execution of the excursions was poor, the planning was very good. The excursion destinations were very good. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2018
Maybe it's a matter of expectations and what you consider expensive. With an average verandah room and the cost of $16,000 for a 15 day cruise, we had high expectations. This was by far the most expensive cruise we have ever taken. ... Read More
Maybe it's a matter of expectations and what you consider expensive. With an average verandah room and the cost of $16,000 for a 15 day cruise, we had high expectations. This was by far the most expensive cruise we have ever taken. It was a stretch for our finances. The room was smaller than those we have had in the past on other cruise lines and the bathroom space rivaled that on an airplane. For the cost, we could have had a suite on HAL, Celebrity, or Princess. But we chose Oceania because of the itinerary and loved that most stops in Vietnam were overnight. Plus, being on a small ship it could dock up the rivers and be centrally located in Saigon and Bangkok, where the larger ships would be 2 hours away on the coast. The dining room had a few missteps as far as proper cooking of steaks and eggs. They were very slow, no matter which meal, to get the courses out. I found a two hour dinner just too long. The specialty restaurants were no better than the main dining room. I would not recommend the O Life. We could not get a custom air route that we wanted, so Oceania made the flight arrangements, which were beyond awful. We took only 1 "free" excursion, which my husband then told me "never again". The group tour was 5 or 6 buses going to Hue together and the bathroom situation was so bad, I couldn't drink water until we got back aboard the ship. I booked last minute private tours for the other ports. We did not care for the entertainment and the fact that there was no theater but a lounge instead. I kept thinking, "Is this worth three times the amount of Celebrity?" and the answer is, no. Overall, it was a disappointment. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
We chose the cruise based on its itinerary. We wanted to go to the main ports of the UK and Ireland. The ship docked at Newcastle, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Belfast, Dublin, Liverpool, Holyhead, Waterford and the Isle of Portland. A similar ... Read More
We chose the cruise based on its itinerary. We wanted to go to the main ports of the UK and Ireland. The ship docked at Newcastle, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Belfast, Dublin, Liverpool, Holyhead, Waterford and the Isle of Portland. A similar cruise on the Caribbean Princess didn’t dock at Newcastle where we had friends living. It was a much smaller (mid-size) ship than the ones we had sailed on prior. We had a Veranda Stateroom. We were suprised at the small sized bathroom. If you disregard the small shower, the room was about the size of an airplane’s toilet. However, they had turned the toilet at an angle towards the wall, which meant you couldn’t use it without pressing your knees into the wall. It would be impossible for a tall person to use it. Other than that the stateroom and veranda were mostly as we had found on the Celebrity and HAL cruises. There was also a lot of noise from the engine when they were traveling around 16 knots. We were near the back of the ship where the engine room is. I guess when the ship was built soundproofing material was scarce. Our perks were a free beverage package, free internet and 6 free excursions. The agency also kicked in a $550 onboard credit. We found the excursions to be extremely expensive compared to celebrity and HAL offerings. Also the Nautica excursions were mostly a short half day in length. We decided to book our own tours directly with the tour companies through Viator etc. We saved a ton of money doing so and the tour content was much fuller than the Ship’s tours. Overall the food selection was excellent. Cabin staff were ok. We thought that being on a smaller ship would mean less wait times the main dining room and buffet but that was not the case. Entertainment was mainly individual singers. Because of the September weather, no one was using any of the outdoor amenities. The entertainment system in the stateroom was out of date with small screen TV and a DVD player for DVD’s obtained at the main reception desk. Overall, the ship got us to where we wanted to go. Food was above average. However, it needs a major refurbishment. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
It was a last minute deal for us and had a an itinerary that ticked quite a few boxes. The itinerary was great, Baltic, followed by around the UK. We had sailed the Regatta so expected the same on the Nautica and hoped their cuisine had ... Read More
It was a last minute deal for us and had a an itinerary that ticked quite a few boxes. The itinerary was great, Baltic, followed by around the UK. We had sailed the Regatta so expected the same on the Nautica and hoped their cuisine had expanded to include simple, tasty dishes. The meals were far too rich for us and service was very spasmodic. Getting a simple meal was almost impossible. We managed to get a few on the first leg after a personal interview with the Manager but he left after that leg and the new Manager did not seem to care and some of the staff were disdainful and rude towards the end of the journey. They ask for feedback but do not seem to enjoy working with the clients to achieve a positive outcome. It will be interesting to see if head office gives us any feedback on the final comments form! We have booked another for next year and will try to clarify what plain wholesome food means before sailing. Again it has been chosen for the itinerary and that we are able to couple it with a river cruise, which helps justify the airfare and air times from Australia. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
We chose this for the fabulous itinerary, ending up with three sunny days in St Petersburg. The tours were good, the on-board lectures about our destination were outstanding. The food was excellent, especially in the specialty restaurants, ... Read More
We chose this for the fabulous itinerary, ending up with three sunny days in St Petersburg. The tours were good, the on-board lectures about our destination were outstanding. The food was excellent, especially in the specialty restaurants, which proved quite easy to book. The passengers were mostly American, and not as old and decrepit as you get on some ships; there were also quite a few Australians and New Zealanders, hardly any British. The crew were mostly from the far East and Europe and went out of their way to be helpful. You could dine at any time and had the chance to meet different people at a shared table if you wanted. The entertainment was pretty poor - naff comedians, rather amateur shows, scratchy classical music. The casino was large and almost always empty. Oceania should replace it with more shops or other use. The shops were unimaginatively stocked - the usual cheap jewellery at inflated prices, as well as some real jewellery, and clothes and bags that you would not look at on land. Nothing useful. The library was extensive, but very American - fiction by authors and biographies of people I had never heard of, so bring your own reading material. The wifi was incredibly expensive, over $300 for two weeks, and it hardly worked. We had sailed on this ship when it was Renaissance nearly 20 years ago and connection had hardly improved since then. There was not much help from the IT staff. We waited until on shore to try to get a decent connection, but Oceania should not charge so much for a poor service. Also they charge a gratuity on every drink, and then expect you to pay another huge gratuity per day at the end of the trip - this is exorbitant. We were lucky with the weather until the final day. Disembarkation at Stockholm was awful - try to avoid Stockholm - the "terminal" was a tent erected in the pouring rain, with no chairs, no toilets, no facilities, just luggage awaiting pickup. Passengers had to stand in whatever cover they could find, waiting for taxis to arrive outside a metal fence. Disembarkation left a bad taste after a very good journey otherwise. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
Having been on many cruises booked this one on a whim a bit too late for a good cabin. We thought we would not care on this itinerary since it would be too cold for a balcony--it was --but our mid-ship low deck cabin would become an inside ... Read More
Having been on many cruises booked this one on a whim a bit too late for a good cabin. We thought we would not care on this itinerary since it would be too cold for a balcony--it was --but our mid-ship low deck cabin would become an inside cabin as the porthole window was often closed in bad weather. An advantage was we had litttle of the motion affected the higher lever cabins. We had Oceania book our flights and transfers and took 4 tours with the line. The transfer were long with lots of wasted wait time . Next time i will book these myself. We booked two tours privately and used the ships shuttles and off-on-busses in Dublin and Edinburgh . The quality of the tours varied--some better than others . We were late getting to iceland so one of our tours started at 8 pm but we still had a beautiful sunset and views of the city. The next day Golden Circle ships tour took us to beautiful but crowded areas. Apparently Iceland is getting too much love with too many crowds. We missed the Fjors in Greenland because of the weather and our stops in Greeland otherwise were unfortunately underwhelming. We did not go on any tours but i did hike some of the area and it provided some views of rock formations. The food and dining venues and the service were both excellent--the food was too wonderful --too many choices--too many excellent deserts. I frankly prefer a bit less temptaion but this was a group of people who liked to eat and sometimes it was hard to find a table when there was a small window for breakfast or lunch due to tours. The ship had a large library--pleasant but often a place where folks were asleep due to the very rocky placement on high seas. The book selection was large but not very interesting or varied. It would seem in the day of the e-reader the s-ace could be used for something else. In bad weather the ship felt crowded since we could not use any of the oudoor venues or decks. Lots of good music , a very good high tea , no lines at reception, generally good entertainment but we did not always attend since our dinners ran late and sitting was limited. Some interesting people but others definitely less so. The crowd was older and mainly English speaking couples--generally American but some Canadians . Surprisingly there were not many from the UK . There were some with mobility issues making tenders difficult at times in rough seas. The Destinations crew consisted of only two people. That is an area that the ship could use more service. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
We have cruised twice before on Oceania: once on Marina and once before on Nautica. While the itinerary was great, the food service was lacking. We enjoyed the ports of call and took a number of ship sponsored tours and found them all to ... Read More
We have cruised twice before on Oceania: once on Marina and once before on Nautica. While the itinerary was great, the food service was lacking. We enjoyed the ports of call and took a number of ship sponsored tours and found them all to be of good quality. The ship and its cabins are nice and the personnel all provided great service. But we felt that the service and quality of the dining experience was poor. To being, 1) the push for all to share tables becomes tedious: we are not at summer camp where we have to make new friends. 2) The itinerary took us to places where the outdoor temperatures were not conducive to outdoor dining, so the Terrace Cafe indoor seating was always packed. 3) The majority of times we went to the Terrace Cafe, we couldn't find a table (even if you were willing to share). When we complained, we were told they loose over a 100 seats due to the cold weather. 4) The Grand Dining room was our answer but they staffing has been greatly reduced and the service is slow and many times what you ordered wasn't what got delivered. 5) It seemed like much of the wait staff was new. All of the wait staff was very pleasant just overwhelmed. The pluses for Oceania are the free water and soft drinks and the lack of cross selling. But with the pricing difference, one needs to do more price comparisons. We are not as sold on Oceania as we had been. Also, disembarkation was rushed. We had to be out of our cabins by 8:00 am and off the ship by 9:00 am. Read Less
12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
We sailed Oceania 5 years ago and loved it. This time we felt something different. We found out that it was bought out by Norwegian Cruise Lines. That explains it all. When we entered the room we had to get housekeeping to come back ... Read More
We sailed Oceania 5 years ago and loved it. This time we felt something different. We found out that it was bought out by Norwegian Cruise Lines. That explains it all. When we entered the room we had to get housekeeping to come back and clean the room. The service was not consistent throughout the ship. There were some wonderful people, trying very hard to please us and there were some that were actually rude. Many times I got up to ask for water or coffee. In the main dining room, had to wait for tea, or dessert. Sometimes we were served our meals at different times. The specialty dining was good but the main dining room and the buffet food varied. The food lacked the consistency that it had before when everything was delicious. The shuttles at the port were not run well. Sometimes they only provided service every hour and if that shuttle was full, you had to wait for the next one. We took taxis from the ports. When I told someone on board the problems with late shuttles or shuttles not coming--they said it was the ports problem not theirs. Going from a dedicated Oceania customer who adored the trip 5 years ago, I will no longer travel or recommend Oceania cruises. I must say, however, that there were some lovely employees on board who tried their best but there were some that really needed to be retrained (or trained or let go). I also feel that they may have cut back on staff to save money. IT JUST WASN'T THE SAME. The buyout could be the explanation. Read Less
15 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
After having just read the review by Shoko I feel like we shared the exact same experience! I, too, discovered that Oceania was bought out by NCL and also found out that NCL is trying to 'come up' to Oceania's high ... Read More
After having just read the review by Shoko I feel like we shared the exact same experience! I, too, discovered that Oceania was bought out by NCL and also found out that NCL is trying to 'come up' to Oceania's high standards. Well, in dong so, I often felt that Nautica was going DOWN to NCL! My husband and I were always promoting Oceania to our friends in EVERY area from service to food to the way that we were taken care of when we landed in the ports, etc. After this cruise we won't be able to do so and will have to consider whether we will take our next cruise on Oceania or pick a different line! While embarkation did go smoothly and I was greeted by our darling room attendant who was most eager to know what she could do to make sure we had everything we wanted exactly as we desired for our stay, I was amazed that something as simple as not having the Kleenex box filled in the cabin had been overlooked; Then we were to disembark it was almost as if we were to be literally thrown out as quickly as possible since items in the fridge had been disposed of the night before our departure. While most of the servers in the various dining venues went above and beyond to be charming and helpful (and I've mentioned them in my review sent directly to Oceania) there were the occasional who were close to downright rude; this would never have happened on a past Oceania cruise. For the most part the food was good and occasionally excellent but when one orders a Jacques Pepin signature dish (steak/frites) and gets an inedible piece of meat that is overcooked it makes one wonder. The final disappointment was the manner in which we were treated when it came to the ports. In the past there have always been shuttles when we didn't get off within EASY walking distance to the town/city. Here we either didn't have a shuttle (Gibralter) OR the shuttle came every hour and if it was filled you had to wait for the next one! When asked, we were told that Oceania had decided not to pay for the shuttle services! IF we were paying for an inexpensive cruise line I could understand being nickel and dimed but Oceania is NOT an inexpensive line so this seems to be a clear case of NCL thinking, yes? In conclusion, we'll consider our options for the future...something we never did before as we went directly to Oceania without a second thought. Read Less
Nautica Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 0.0
Dining 5.0 0.0
Entertainment 3.0 0.0
Public Rooms 5.0 0.0
Fitness Recreation 5.0 0.0
Family 2.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 4.0 0.0
Enrichment 5.0 0.0
Service 4.0 0.0
Value For Money 5.0 0.0
Rates 5.0 0.0

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