First let me state that this was the second of two back to back cruises my friend and I took (the first being to Spain and Portugal.) Truthfully by the end of the second cruise I felt a bit jaded, overfed and kind of done with the famous Cunard formality (Some less kind than I would say pretentiousness.) I'll try to keep the fact that I was ready to go home from excessively coloring this review.
Embarkation was extremely easy. We simply left our luggage and clothes hanging in the previous cabin and it was all magically relocated to our new one. Unfortunately though, I had made a mistake by reserving an interior cabin. The room felt small, cramped and very dark, especially compared to the lovely window room I had on the previous cruise. We had dinner at the early seating in the Brittania Room. (And when I say early, I mean EARLY -- 6pm.) The early dining hour affected my enjoyment of the cruise. I understand why the schedule is the way it is but I really wish there had been a dinner seating at 7 or even 6:30. (The late seating at 8:30 was far too late for me.) Nonetheless, dinners were generally very good and the service was impeccable. We had lunches in the Lido which offered a wide selection of very good food. The Lido on the QE is quite spacious and uncrowded compared to other cruise ships.
I enjoyed most of the evening entertainment with the glaring exception of the Cunard singers and dancers. Although they seemed to try hard, their performances were at an amateur level. One female singer in particular was so screechy and out of tune she literally made my ears hurt. That was unfortunate because the back up orchestra in the Royal Court Theatre is absolutely top notch. On this cruise the guest performers were mixed: the cellist, whose name escapes me, was outstanding as was singer Eve Sherratt; comedian William Caulfield had an old style act that simply wasn't very funny.
My major source of disappointment with the cruise was no fault of Cunard's. I simply didn't find Norway too be as fabulous as many people say. True, the scenery is lovely but the ports are tiny with very limited options beyond enjoying the views. Further, with the exception of one day, the weather was drizzly and cold which no doubt affected my enjoyment of the locales.
Overall, I would definitely cruise with Cunard again. The QE is a beautiful ship and I did enjoy the Old World feel of elegance and impeccable service.
Dark and cramped. My mistake for not reserving oceanview.
Interesting and compact area to walk around.
Not much to see or do.
Miserable rainy day made exploring problematic.