Firstly, I wanted to give more stars, I really did, but having had my first cruise in 2013 on Oriana which was wonderful, this one was just not worth all the money.
Embarkation was easy and at the exact time stated on our tickets. On board swiftly and all luggage was outside our cabin (E78 - outside, restricted view). Cabin was perfect, mid ship and above the prom deck so no need to use lifts much. Cabin was clean (apart from hair in the bath plug hole which should have been noticed really), also the little plastic holder for our cabin steward's details was empty. Cabin steward introduced himself in such a rushed way that I didn't catch his name and no towel animals - I know it's not important but the little personal touches were what made P&O special in my opinion.
Ate in the Belvedere for lunch most days if we were on board which was very nice and one of the things which I thought was better than the Oriana. We usually found a seat no problem or ate by the Neptune pool. Also tried the Neptune snack bar. Hotdogs were nice but I didn't like the burgers - tasted like cheap tinned ones.
Dinner was Meridian 2nd sitting on a table of 8. Our table companions were all very nice and service was very quick, which was the problem really. Having had silver service last time the difference is huge. The waiting staff seem rushed and harassed (obviously less than previously) and did not really chat at all. On our last cruise they chatted and there was banter and fun (napkin flowers) but I felt we were in a fast food establishment at times - Enjoy your Starters? Enjoy your Dinners? Enjoy your Desserts? Goodnight!
Bars were all good and we enjoyed the quizzes in the Rising Sun and Bingo 3 times (had a little win). The Crow's nest is lovely and I sat in there on sea days reading a lot.
Theatre is very nice and the Headliners were great, as was the comedian. I didn't see anything else though my partner enjoyed the captains talk.
The ports - Madeira, La Palma, Gran Canaria, Tenerife, Lanzarote and Lisbon - were all very good, though my parents said Santa Cruz, Tenerife was not (we did the Loro Parque trip which was brilliant) worth visiting as it's the capital and mainly for business. Plenty of time in each port too which was good.
One disappointment was that things were out of order for our whole cruise, a few of the public toilets, all the spa pools were filled and the water was hot but they didn't work and on two of the hot port days the Neptune pool was covered with net as out of order! Also they ran out of a few of the drinks early and when I tried to get my nails done during the first week they had ran out of Gel - available widely now so no excuse really.
Generally we had a good cruise apart from the obvious cut backs which aren't reflected in the price. Fellow passengers were mostly older but in the main friendly. There were one or two selfish wheelchair/mobility scooter users, example - someone stopped for a chat to people sat in piano bar blocking the aisle where around 5 people were waiting to get past! All totally ignored and most walked back and through the seating area eventually, though I think one man climbed over the wheelchair to make a point but was still ignored. I really don't understand this attitude of self importance, and they say it's the 'youth' who are rude usually. Though we did laugh about these incidents.
I think next time I will look at another cruise company as although I loved the size and décor of Arcadia I feel that much has been lost in cutbacks so I don't see the point of paying the extra in future.
Spacious and light considering the lifeboat restricting view. Midship so little movement felt. Plenty of storage and hangers.
Lovely place. They are working on the sea front so will be nicer next time.
Brilliant day out, well worth the money.View All 14 Loro Park Reviews
Port ok, wouldn't go back to the same area on holiday.
It's just a port, didn't go into Southampton.