My wife and I are veteran cruisers, but this was our first cruise with Oceania. The ship was, at first glance, a bit underwhelming, especially as compared to the larger, and glitzier mass market megaships. But we quickly discovered that the Marina has a certain elegance that is not found on larger ships. And we appreciated this more with each passing day.
We arrived at Southampton around 1 PM on departure day and quickly checked in and were shown to our cabin on the port side of Deck 9, Concierge Level. Our cabin attendant introduced himself as soon as we arrived, and his service, throughout the 12-day cruise was outstanding. The Concierge lounge was just down the corridor and served coffee, sodas, and snacks (small sandwiches/croissants and cookies) throughout the day. Daily newspapers from both London and the U.S.A. were available every day. Internet service, though free and unlimited for O-Life Choice guests, was often slow and sometimes not available at all.
We had a number of shore excursions booked. Most were pretty good, but the exception was our trip to the Edinburgh Castle. The guide on the tour bus was not very informative, and she escorted us into the castle (thus bypassing the long queue for tickets) and basically left us there. And it was raining quite hard at the time.
Nice cabin. Lots of room for all of our clothing in numerous drawers and one very large sliding-door closet. The cabin attendant did a great job keeping everything nice and neat and keeping the ice bucket always filled.
Beautiful scenery, and a very knowledgeable tour guide made this a very enjoyable excursion. We had a lot of time to wander around Kirkwall at the end of the excursion.
Did Bergen on our own using the Hop-on, Hop-off bus, which was a lot cheaper and more convenient than the cruise operated shore excursion. Lots of shopping in Bergen as well.