My wife and I just returned from a 19 day cruise on the ORIANA around the med and Adriatic.,We drove down the night before and stayed at Chilworth Manor, just to make it an extra days holiday.,Now most hotels ask you to vacate by 10.00am ,ours was 12.00. The reason I tell you this will become clear. Our boarding time was 1500hrs, having no problem with this we thought we can wait at the terminal.so taxi in to terminal where we were given a ticket and took a seat to await our embarkation. During the time we were waiting on a number of occasions ALL the check in desks were empty so we asked could we check in....not board but just check in.We were told no..have to wait until 3-00 .Eventually the Evesway coaches arrived and were given priority, obviously there will be people on the coaches that have early boarding times and those that have later times like us.....Eventually we were called to CHECKIN at 1515hrs.Now we dont mind "waiting our turn" but when you have check in desks doing NOTHING surely the people already at the terminal could have at least checked in,and called to board at their required time, it just seems a very haphazard way to embark passengers,We think PO have to look at this again. The Ship....This was our first time with PO and also the smallest ship we have been on and were impressed with the layout and design of her,..did not have to walk far to get to any venue.all public spaces were clean and"shipshape" .Also first inside cabin we have had,and we were pleasantly surprised,plenty of room,for clothes etc quite comfortable. except for the first day and half where we hit a force 10. DINING....We had freedom dining (anytime) and never had a problem getting a table ,usually to share.which we enjoy. the food was ....OK but there was nothing on any of the menus that made us go WOW.and it was certainly catered for "brits", having said that ,the service was EXCELLENT.with all the waiting staff very friendly and approachable. The reason for the heading VERY "BRITISH.is that during our cruise we spoke to many other passengers about both PO and the ORIANA,and it was VERY evident that many of them were very "protective"about both. ie Will NEVER try another cruise line, and in many cases no other ship,when we told them we have used PRINCESS ,ROYAL CARIBEAN and Thomson..some got quite irate,....they seem to regard it as their own private cruise line. ENTERTAINMENT......This was a "music at sea" cruise, unfortunately we were not informed until after we booked,it was all classical music. Luckily I enjoy some of this,but my wife doesnt,having said that I enjoy some classical music, I mean QUALITY performers, and unfortunately some were not....the violinist and flautist were world class but the male singers were at best average. Every PO ship apparently have their "HEADLINERS" who are the ships entertainment crew.These did a number of shows throughout the cruise,and they are all very talented...BUT in my opinion every one was... to loud..and to fast,... slick and profesional...yes,but most shows were non stop "medleys"of ABBA ,Musicals etc. I dont think they actually finished a song before going into another. The other entertainment was pretty good, a comedian, a fantastic group (Bluejays) and an ex HOLLIES member who was very entertaining. One of the things we found annoying was ,if you wnt to one of the lounges in the evening for entertainment,lasting and hour,as soon as it was over,you had to leave as there was nothing to keep you there,not even music.. DAYTIME....As I said this was our first time with PO,and the "things to do"was ,in my opinion very poor, We are not interested in .BRIDGE,WHIST, KNITTING, SEQUENCE DANCING or Shuffleboard...we overheard people say they only went to play it because there was nothing else to do...we even went to the cinema 3 times to ease the boredom. SHORE EXCURSIONS....Where do I start? I think by now everyone who cruises knows that ships excursions are a rip off....that goes for ANY line. but by far and away the "CATANIA HIGHLIGHTS" tour was one of the worst. ie Bus from ship,coast road to a "photo opportunity" a large piece of lava rock in the sea with a "fort" on top (which we couldnt go into) then back to a square which was a 10mnt walk from the ship to see a cathedral (which we could not enter because service on) where we were told we had 2 HOURS of"free time" then walked about 200yrds to where the shuttle dropped off to the bus to take us back to the ship which would have been quicker walking to. ABSOLUTELY SCANDALOUS....needless to say there were a lot of complaints ,but no refund given. The next port of call CORIGLIANO CALABRO....ANOTHER waste of time,shuttle to "town" (20 mnts) then if wanted to 3EU another shuttle to a castle at top of hill (could walk if fit enough) that was it. VENICE...Fell in love with Venice first time we went,and even though my wife had to visit a dentist there,it is still a magical place. TRIESTE..This place oozes money and class, very expensive top end shops,and some beautiful architecture.Again straight off ship into town. ZADAR...Beautiful place...straight off ship by short shuttle ride lovely walk along promenade into the town where we found a great little bar as you go through the gate right up the steps absolutely great, outdoors with cushions and rugs on the floor reeealy nice place to have a quiet drink. KOTOR.....Also a lovely place, unfortunately the tender boarding was a shambles, waited in lounge until called down, only to find they had not disembarcked the ones already in it.so waited for 45 mnts on stairs before boarding, the ones coming back on board had been waiting on hour on the water to get back...absolute shambles, but once ashore lovely walks and interesting things ..like the "great wall" brilliant. CORFU.....Now we come to the not so good part, we actually sailed into Corfu harbour only for the captain to announce he didnt feel it was safe to try and dock?? He later announced that we would dock in CARTAGENA instead, ok no problem...even printed and arranged excursions etc for passengers ...later he announced that due to currents and tides there he didnt feel it was "viable" to attempt to call in there......maybe it had something to do with port fees ?? So on to GIBRALTER..straight of ship ,there are taxis,minibuses etc to use for tours as you come off,these are a lot cheaper than ships tours..we paid £25 for a wonderful 2,/ 1/2 hour trip around and top of the rock.with a great guide. This was the ONLY port in a weeks sailing, not really good enough PO. Finally,I would say we would try PO again,but a much bigger ship like the Azura maybe.maybe it has better stabalisers .as this ship moved a little to much and to often for us.

Very "BRITISH"

Oriana Cruise Review by slug33ukuk

9 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: June 2017
  • Destination: Mediterranean
  • Cabin Type: Inside Twin Cabin
My wife and I just returned from a 19 day cruise on the ORIANA around the med and Adriatic.,We drove down the night before and stayed at Chilworth Manor, just to make it an extra days holiday.,Now most hotels ask you to vacate by 10.00am ,ours was 12.00. The reason I tell you this will become clear.

Our boarding time was 1500hrs, having no problem with this we thought we can wait at the terminal.so taxi in to terminal where we were given a ticket and took a seat to await our embarkation. During the time we were waiting on a number of occasions ALL the check in desks were empty so we asked could we check in....not board but just check in.We were told no..have to wait until 3-00 .Eventually the Evesway coaches arrived and were given priority, obviously there will be people on the coaches that have early boarding times and those that have later times like us.....Eventually we were called to CHECKIN at 1515hrs.Now we dont mind "waiting our turn" but when you have check in desks doing NOTHING surely the people already at the terminal could have at least checked in,and called to board at their required time, it just seems a very haphazard way to embark passengers,We think PO have to look at this again.

The Ship....This was our first time with PO and also the smallest ship we have been on and were impressed with the layout and design of her,..did not have to walk far to get to any venue.all public spaces were clean and"shipshape" .Also first inside cabin we have had,and we were pleasantly surprised,plenty of room,for clothes etc quite comfortable.

except for the first day and half where we hit a force 10.

DINING....We had freedom dining (anytime) and never had a problem getting a table ,usually to share.which we enjoy. the food was ....OK but there was nothing on any of the menus that made us go WOW.and it was certainly catered for "brits", having said that ,the service was EXCELLENT.with all the waiting staff very friendly and approachable.

The reason for the heading VERY "BRITISH.is that during our cruise we spoke to many other passengers about both PO and the ORIANA,and it was VERY evident that many of them were very "protective"about both. ie Will NEVER try another cruise line, and in many cases no other ship,when we told them we have used PRINCESS ,ROYAL CARIBEAN and Thomson..some got quite irate,....they seem to regard it as their own private cruise line.

ENTERTAINMENT......This was a "music at sea" cruise, unfortunately we were not informed until after we booked,it was all classical music. Luckily I enjoy some of this,but my wife doesnt,having said that I enjoy some classical music, I mean QUALITY performers, and unfortunately some were not....the violinist and flautist were world class but the male singers were at best average.

Every PO ship apparently have their "HEADLINERS" who are the ships entertainment crew.These did a number of shows throughout the cruise,and they are all very talented...BUT in my opinion every one was... to loud..and to fast,... slick and profesional...yes,but most shows were non stop "medleys"of ABBA ,Musicals etc.

I dont think they actually finished a song before going into another.

The other entertainment was pretty good, a comedian, a fantastic group (Bluejays) and an ex HOLLIES member who was very entertaining.

One of the things we found annoying was ,if you wnt to one of the lounges in the evening for entertainment,lasting and hour,as soon as it was over,you had to leave as there was nothing to keep you there,not even music..

DAYTIME....As I said this was our first time with PO,and the "things to do"was ,in my opinion very poor, We are not interested in .BRIDGE,WHIST, KNITTING, SEQUENCE DANCING or Shuffleboard...we overheard people say they only went to play it because there was nothing else to do...we even went to the cinema 3 times to ease the boredom.

SHORE EXCURSIONS....Where do I start? I think by now everyone who cruises knows that ships excursions are a rip off....that goes for ANY line. but by far and away the "CATANIA HIGHLIGHTS" tour was one of the worst. ie Bus from ship,coast road to a "photo opportunity" a large piece of lava rock in the sea with a "fort" on top (which we couldnt go into) then back to a square which was a 10mnt walk from the ship to see a cathedral (which we could not enter because service on) where we were told we had 2 HOURS of"free time" then walked about 200yrds to where the shuttle dropped off to the bus to take us back to the ship which would have been quicker walking to. ABSOLUTELY SCANDALOUS....needless to say there were a lot of complaints ,but no refund given.

The next port of call CORIGLIANO CALABRO....ANOTHER waste of time,shuttle to "town" (20 mnts) then if wanted to 3EU another shuttle to a castle at top of hill (could walk if fit enough) that was it.

VENICE...Fell in love with Venice first time we went,and even though my wife had to visit a dentist there,it is still a magical place.

TRIESTE..This place oozes money and class, very expensive top end shops,and some beautiful architecture.Again straight off ship into town.

ZADAR...Beautiful place...straight off ship by short shuttle ride lovely walk along promenade into the town where we found a great little bar as you go through the gate right up the steps absolutely great, outdoors with cushions and rugs on the floor reeealy nice place to have a quiet drink.

KOTOR.....Also a lovely place, unfortunately the tender boarding was a shambles, waited in lounge until called down, only to find they had not disembarcked the ones already in it.so waited for 45 mnts on stairs before boarding, the ones coming back on board had been waiting on hour on the water to get back...absolute shambles, but once ashore lovely walks and interesting things ..like the "great wall" brilliant.

CORFU.....Now we come to the not so good part, we actually sailed into Corfu harbour only for the captain to announce he didnt feel it was safe to try and dock??

He later announced that we would dock in CARTAGENA instead, ok no problem...even printed and arranged excursions etc for passengers ...later he announced that due to currents and tides there he didnt feel it was "viable" to attempt to call in there......maybe it had something to do with port fees ??

So on to GIBRALTER..straight of ship ,there are taxis,minibuses etc to use for tours as you come off,these are a lot cheaper than ships tours..we paid £25 for a wonderful 2,/ 1/2 hour trip around and top of the rock.with a great guide. This was the ONLY port in a weeks sailing, not really good enough PO.

Finally,I would say we would try PO again,but a much bigger ship like the Azura maybe.maybe it has better stabalisers .as this ship moved a little to much and to often for us.
slug33ukuk’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Inside Twin Cabin
Cabin NB F133
Just forward of midships,on starboard side on deck 5,very comfortable,and adequate for needs,
tends to feel any movement of the ship a little more than midship cabinss,also noisy when seas are rough with waves hiiting the bows Plenty of storage space, better to have the beds in twin configuration for more room.
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