This was our 6th cruise on the QV and the 2nd New Year trip to Amsterdam. We travelled down to Southampton on the 28th Dec and stayed at the Holiday Inn Express just off the motorway and Ideally suited to get to the West Quay shopping centre for a bit of retail therapy before embarking the ship. We were pleased to see the ship berthed at Ocean Terminal. We arrived at noon and were processed fairly rapidly but had to wait again to go through security as the ship wasn’t ready to take on passengers. The wait wasn’t too long though - our cabin, Deck 1 outside midships was ready and waiting for us. We dumped our stuff and went to the lido for lunch before it got busy - the ship was full and the Lido the only place to eat if you are not in Grills. The ship was still decked out in its Christmas Finery and looked fantastic.
This was our first time back on the QV since her refit. The new wall mounted flat screen TVs are a great improvement. And at last Cunard have put in tea and coffee making facilities in the cabins. Hemispheres is now the Yatch Club and Britannia Club dining is now available for those who want to pay the extra. She does look a little drab in parts though - but not in the main passenger areas.
Before we left S’ton, and just after muster stations, Commodore Rynd announced that due to the high winds and sea state we would not be going to Bruge but heading straight to Amsterdam to up our chances of getting into Ijmuiden and the North Sea Canal. This turned out to be a good call. There was a force 8 blowing for most of the journey over to Amsterdam. The QV proved to be very steady given the weather conditions. This gave us an extra sea day to relax. Very welcome after a busy Christmas. We were disappointed not to visit Bruge but I have visited Bruge on a number of occasions inc a long weekend (which I would recommend to give it justice). We took the opportunity to lunch in the Verandah Restaurant. It costs $20 but we think it’s worth it. It was already fully booked up for Dinner throughout the trip. I attended one of the guest speaker presentations - it was OK. It was interesting to hear a barrister talk and how Programmes such as Judge John Deeds give such a false impression of how the law works.
Well positioned cabin. Good access to fore and midship lifts. Steward worked very hard to keep it neat and tidy. Comfy pillows. Noise of waves hitting ship load when in a storm but that’s what you get when you choose cabin based on stability .
Great pre cruise shopping in West Quay shopping centre
Visited Delft. Would recommend. Regular train service from Amsterdam Central.€26 return. Takes 1 hr each way.