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Navigator 3 night cruise Southampton to Cork review We travelled down to Southampton on 1 June, the day before. We stayed at the Holiday Inn Express, about 10 minutes drive from the docks. We arrived at the dock at about 10.30 and were guided to the car parking area. We dropped of our luggage (no tipping needed in Southampton) and walked to the terminal (less than 5 minutes walk). At that time it was, to say the least, still very quiet. There were no queues whatsoever, plenty of check in desks open. We had done the online check in so it all went very swiftly. We were told to go to the waiting area with a group 1 boarding ticket and that boarding would start at about 11.30. My sister and her husband and my parents had a bit more difficulty checking in. As this was a cruise within the EU, they didn't have a passport, just an ID card. The ladies at check in didn't quite know how to sort it out, but eventually managed. Cake, cookies and refreshments were provided in the waiting area. Boarding didn't start until 11.45, priority passengers got to on first, then it was our turn, group 1! We were onboard by midday! Cabins weren't available until 1pm, but we managed to drop of our hand luggage in the cabin straight away. Straight away we noticed something different about this cruise: where were all the Americans??? The only accents we heard were British ones, and we could tell by the drinks that were being ordered it was a distinctly British crowd. It felt a bit weird, not what we're used to. We had booked an inside cabin. This was our first 'real' inside cabin. We had a promenade cabin on one of our previous cruises. The cabin was tiny compared to the promenade cabin and balcony cabins! To get into bed, you had to sit at the end of it and just crawl up as there was no space to walk round the sides due to the desk and sofa being to close to it. Our cabin steward was Marlon, he was great! Provided us with bath robes and was really friendly (even checked with my husband if the birthday decorations were to our satisfaction). One thing was missing though from our room: the big blue binder with all the phone numbers, room service details, … We heard from other cruisers they didn't have one either. Still no idea why it wasn't there. The other disappointing thing was that there was no camera on the bow of the ship that was shown on the cabin tv. Inside passengers had no way of finding out what the weather was like outside (there was a cam on the promenade though). The new bedding is great, soooo soft. We slept wonderfully all 3 nights. The ship is very good condition. Throughout the cruise, small areas were cornered off for maintenance and a spot of painting. The covers on the loungers in the solarium had seen better days, but that's the only thing that wasn't in pristine condition. Due to UK licensing laws, the general store was closed throughout the cruise, which was a shame. We had dinner in the main dining room every night. The food was delicious, especially the fillet mignon and duck. They always asked if we wanted more of anything and were very fast in provided seconds. Service again was excellent and our head waiter was the best one we've ever had. One night, chilled strawberry bisque was one of the appetizers. I loved it so much I wanted it as a desert too, so our waiter quickly went to check if it hadn't been chucked out yet. Luckily it hadn't and he came back with 2 extra portions. 2 things however were seriously disappointing. The wine list! We don't know what happened, but it was just 1 piece of paper with a very very limited list, not what we're used to. We asked at reception why it was so limited and were told it was because when they're in Europe they can't always get hold of the same suppliers (or something along those lines) hence the limited list. Personally I find this hard to believe. The other thing that as different was that there was no salad course, it was just listed under appetizers. I'm sure we could have asked for it, but it was odd that it wasn't standard as usual. Entertainment seemed more limited than on longer cruises. We caught one of the production shows and really enjoyed it (it's the ballroom dancing one). We also went to see the ice show and as usual it was amazing! There were 2 parades, didn't completely watch them, but had fun. Didn't go to the captain's champagne reception, but heard it was very quiet compared to other cruises. We were still in port, so I guess a lot of people were still on shore. Arriving in Cobh. I think disembarkation started about 15 minutes late, not that it mattered too much for us as we were just planning a leisurely day in Cobh. The Cobh Maritime Music Festival happened to be on that weekend. There was a pipe band competition going on, which could be seen from the ship (great sailing into the harbor and being welcomed by pipe bands!). The weather was sunny and warm, and the atmosphere in Cobh was delightful and very welcoming. There were even posters in town that said: "Come see the great ocean liner". We just did a walking tour, vaguely based on the Titanic Heritage Trail. We walked all the way to the old cemetery (with the graves of the Lusitania victims) which is a lot further than they make you believe it is, but well worth the walk. Formal night: no shortage of champagne on the promenade. Even though this was a short cruise, it was nice to see that people had still made an effort to dress up properly. There was no midnight buffet on this cruise. This was my family’s first cruise and it would have been nice if they could have seen the grandeur of it all. We had 1 sea day. The weather in the morning was gorgeous and we just spent it being lazy on deck. There were a couple of chair hogs by the solarium pool, neatly folded towels with a book. I felt like removing them, but gave the benefit of the doubt. More than 2 hours later, the towels and books were still there. It wasn’t busy in the solarium, but I did feel that the crew should have discouraged people from chair hogging. Breakfast that day in the Windjammer was very busy as the dining room wasn’t serving breakfast that day. The dining room did have a brunch from 10.30 until 2pm. We had lunch at Johnny Rockets on the sea day. We did have to wait about 20 minutes for a table. I guess with it being a short cruise, a lot of people wanted to try it out. Disembarkation in Southampton was very efficient. We were allowed to stay in our cabins until 8am. According to our time sheet we were supposed to go off the ship at 8.30. Our color was actually called out at about 8am, but we stayed on a bit longer and left just after 9am. It’s nice that you don’t have to go through immigration, so it all went very smoothly. We all had a fantastic time, my sister and her husband were afraid it might not be their cup of tea, but wanted to give it go. They are now looking into doing a cruise to Norway, they were surprised they liked it a lot better than they expected. My parents too had a great time, but I’m not sure if they’ll venture on a cruise on their own. They don’t speak/understand English that well so it isn’t that easy for them. We loved being onboard again, but were disappointed that some of the usual things were missing (the wine list, salad course, midnight buffet, blue information folder in the cabin, …) and felt that because it was a short cruise they limited some of the services. Can’t wait to book another cruise (well, we have 2 booked as it is)!

Navigator of the Seas - Northern Europe

Navigator of the Seas Cruise Review by SylviaB

Trip Details
Navigator 3 night cruise Southampton to Cork review
We travelled down to Southampton on 1 June, the day before. We stayed at the Holiday Inn Express, about 10 minutes drive from the docks.
We arrived at the dock at about 10.30 and were guided to the car parking area. We dropped of our luggage (no tipping needed in Southampton) and walked to the terminal (less than 5 minutes walk). At that time it was, to say the least, still very quiet. There were no queues whatsoever, plenty of check in desks open. We had done the online check in so it all went very swiftly. We were told to go to the waiting area with a group 1 boarding ticket and that boarding would start at about 11.30. My sister and her husband and my parents had a bit more difficulty checking in. As this was a cruise within the EU, they didn't have a passport, just an ID card. The ladies at check in didn't quite know how to sort it out, but eventually managed. Cake, cookies and refreshments were provided in the waiting area. Boarding didn't start until 11.45, priority passengers got to on first, then it was our turn, group 1! We were onboard by midday! Cabins weren't available until 1pm, but we managed to drop of our hand luggage in the cabin straight away.
Straight away we noticed something different about this cruise: where were all the Americans??? The only accents we heard were British ones, and we could tell by the drinks that were being ordered it was a distinctly British crowd. It felt a bit weird, not what we're used to. We had booked an inside cabin. This was our first 'real' inside cabin. We had a promenade cabin on one of our previous cruises. The cabin was tiny compared to the promenade cabin and balcony cabins! To get into bed, you had to sit at the end of it and just crawl up as there was no space to walk round the sides due to the desk and sofa being to close to it. Our cabin steward was Marlon, he was great! Provided us with bath robes and was really friendly (even checked with my husband if the birthday decorations were to our satisfaction). One thing was missing though from our room: the big blue binder with all the phone numbers, room service details, … We heard from other cruisers they didn't have one either. Still no idea why it wasn't there. The other disappointing thing was that there was no camera on the bow of the ship that was shown on the cabin tv. Inside passengers had no way of finding out what the weather was like outside (there was a cam on the promenade though). The new bedding is great, soooo soft. We slept wonderfully all 3 nights.
The ship is very good condition. Throughout the cruise, small areas were cornered off for maintenance and a spot of painting. The covers on the loungers in the solarium had seen better days, but that's the only thing that wasn't in pristine condition. Due to UK licensing laws, the general store was closed throughout the cruise, which was a shame.
We had dinner in the main dining room every night. The food was delicious, especially the fillet mignon and duck. They always asked if we wanted more of anything and were very fast in provided seconds. Service again was excellent and our head waiter was the best one we've ever had. One night, chilled strawberry bisque was one of the appetizers. I loved it so much I wanted it as a desert too, so our waiter quickly went to check if it hadn't been chucked out yet. Luckily it hadn't and he came back with 2 extra portions. 2 things however were seriously disappointing. The wine list! We don't know what happened, but it was just 1 piece of paper with a very very limited list, not what we're used to. We asked at reception why it was so limited and were told it was because when they're in Europe they can't always get hold of the same suppliers (or something along those lines) hence the limited list. Personally I find this hard to believe. The other thing that as different was that there was no salad course, it was just listed under appetizers. I'm sure we could have asked for it, but it was odd that it wasn't standard as usual.
Entertainment seemed more limited than on longer cruises. We caught one of the production shows and really enjoyed it (it's the ballroom dancing one). We also went to see the ice show and as usual it was amazing! There were 2 parades, didn't completely watch them, but had fun. Didn't go to the captain's champagne reception, but heard it was very quiet compared to other cruises. We were still in port, so I guess a lot of people were still on shore.
Arriving in Cobh. I think disembarkation started about 15 minutes late, not that it mattered too much for us as we were just planning a leisurely day in Cobh. The Cobh Maritime Music Festival happened to be on that weekend. There was a pipe band competition going on, which could be seen from the ship (great sailing into the harbor and being welcomed by pipe bands!). The weather was sunny and warm, and the atmosphere in Cobh was delightful and very welcoming. There were even posters in town that said: "Come see the great ocean liner". We just did a walking tour, vaguely based on the Titanic Heritage Trail. We walked all the way to the old cemetery (with the graves of the Lusitania victims) which is a lot further than they make you believe it is, but well worth the walk. Formal night: no shortage of champagne on the promenade. Even though this was a short cruise, it was nice to see that people had still made an effort to dress up properly. There was no midnight buffet on this cruise. This was my family’s first cruise and it would have been nice if they could have seen the grandeur of it all.
We had 1 sea day. The weather in the morning was gorgeous and we just spent it being lazy on deck. There were a couple of chair hogs by the solarium pool, neatly folded towels with a book. I felt like removing them, but gave the benefit of the doubt. More than 2 hours later, the towels and books were still there. It wasn’t busy in the solarium, but I did feel that the crew should have discouraged people from chair hogging. Breakfast that day in the Windjammer was very busy as the dining room wasn’t serving breakfast that day. The dining room did have a brunch from 10.30 until 2pm. We had lunch at Johnny Rockets on the sea day. We did have to wait about 20 minutes for a table. I guess with it being a short cruise, a lot of people wanted to try it out.
Disembarkation in Southampton was very efficient. We were allowed to stay in our cabins until 8am. According to our time sheet we were supposed to go off the ship at 8.30. Our color was actually called out at about 8am, but we stayed on a bit longer and left just after 9am. It’s nice that you don’t have to go through immigration, so it all went very smoothly.
We all had a fantastic time, my sister and her husband were afraid it might not be their cup of tea, but wanted to give it go. They are now looking into doing a cruise to Norway, they were surprised they liked it a lot better than they expected. My parents too had a great time, but I’m not sure if they’ll venture on a cruise on their own. They don’t speak/understand English that well so it isn’t that easy for them. We loved being onboard again, but were disappointed that some of the usual things were missing (the wine list, salad course, midnight buffet, blue information folder in the cabin, …) and felt that because it was a short cruise they limited some of the services. Can’t wait to book another cruise (well, we have 2 booked as it is)!
SylviaB’s Full Rating Summary
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