Columbus Cruise Review by afcw
- Sail Date: August 2018
- Destination: Baltic Sea
We didn’t want the cruise to involve flying to a foreign airport before getting on the boat. Waiting at airports and cancelled flights to be avoided.
We decided to get the best accommodation on a small ship with an adults only policy. If we didn’t enjoy the experience under these conditions – we never would!
Cruise and Maritime (CMV) seemed to fit the bill and we chose an eight day cruise to the Norwegian fjords. Our junior suite with balcony was the top of the range for cabins.
Leaving from Tilbury, it took us 36 hours to reach our destination. Fortunately the North Sea was pretty calm.
Columbus is a comparatively small ship for cruising, at 63,000 tons. Built in 1986 it has had various owners and re-fits until CMV acquired it in 2017. It has a capacity for 1,600 travellers and a crew of 638. On our journey there were 1,400 on board, but it didn’t seem to be particularly crowded. The staff all spoke good English and, without exception, were helpful and friendly.
The suite was large (350 sq.ft). Excellent shower. King size bed. Three seater sofa. Flat screen TV (small). Plenty of space to hang clothes and a dressing area as well. A good start. Outside there were two smallish swimming pools and plenty of leisure areas for relaxing and sunbathing (late August in Norway? Unlikely!)
We wanted a leisurely experience, without the formality of ‘dressing for dinner with the captain’. With a choice of places to eat we managed to achieve that, although there was such an evening for which the majority appeared prepared and had packed their glad rags and DJs. This was hosted in the Waterfront Restaurant with its usual full waiter service, but there was always the self-service Plantation Bistro as an acceptable substitute. In either eatery the food was good, if a little repetitive in the Bistro.
A daily news-sheet detailed all of the activities happening on board for that day, which were wide and varied. They helped to pass the time whilst sailing from one place to another. A variety of live bands gave excellent performances in either the Palladium Show Lounge or the Dome Nightclub and overall the variety of entertainments was good.
We enjoyed our first taste of cruising but – if we take another one – will probably sail to somewhere warmer!
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