Chose this cruise because of its interesting itinerary and because it sailed to countries & places I had never visited...Kirkwall, Iceland, Greenland, St John's, Nova Scotia, Quebec.
As cruise virgins my wife & I had nothing to compare this with - other than an excellent & fascinating trip from Bergen up to the Russian border with Hurtigruten a couple of years earlier.
The trip turned out to be a few days too long. Routines gradually became repetitive and too many days were spent at sea just adding miles to our next port of call. Nevertheless, for a bargain price and a fascinating cruise, this was a pleasant experience that didn't put us off cruising... but did teach us some good lessons.
We were not looking forward to the Marco Polo after reading so many nasty & negative reviews but we were pleasantly surprised. Yes, the hip IS old but it is clean, well looked after and comfortable. It is small enough to have given us a sense of belonging and we were looked after very cheerfully and professionally by our cabin maid and by the two waiters / stewards who served most of our meals. Staff were generally cheerful, polite and industrious.
Our Greek captain had a good sense of humour, a thick accent and limited English but proved to be good at his job. Our inner cabin proved comfortable and spacious (the swimming pool was overhead and provided sloshing sounds at times), We took part in many activities that included ballroom dancing, keep fit, photography, choir, pilates and attending lectures and evening shows. We also read a good deal and used the small library which had a fair selection of books.
Dining proved interesting: we had almost all our meals served to us in the formal dining room with good cutlery and crockery and attentive, smiling stewards. The food was generally good but rarely noteworthy...some repetition was inevitable but we were fortunate to find pleasant companions and most meals were full of laughter and smiles.
We did our own thing at most ports and rarely used the ship's excursions. Most seemed to have been well organised but also expensive and slow. We thoroughly enjoyed being independent but should have realised why we were not very popular by ignoring virtually all of their excursions.
We returned with some great memories of ports, activities and people; some fantastic photographs, and the Marco Polo COUGH that had affected so many passengers and that lasted for another 5 days when we reached home.
Great value...a happy cruise...cheerful staff...good memories and, apart from the cough, a healthy and enjoyable trip. We have booked aboard the Magellan for a Baltic cruise in October so, yes, we will be going again.