Just back from 17 nights first time on this ship but have travelled with Cunard previously on QM2 transatlantics.
Amazing boarding experience no waiting at all we were in our cabin within 20 minutes from leaving the car.
First thing that struck us about Elizabeth was the ceilings were lower & consequently fewer steps between each deck which meant we were less exhausted on arriving in the Lido buffet on the first few days than is typical when arriving in Kings Court! Over all the layout of the ship was easy to understand and finding ones way around was easy.
Cabin 4178 was fine, plenty of storage and we didn't have any trouble fitting stuff in the shower room despite other peoples complaints about the size of the bathroom.
We discovered we'd left all my husbands jackets & formal outfit at home about 30 minutes before the all aboard time which raised our stress levels. However we made some quick calls to family & by the end of muster drill had a plan to fed ex the case to our first port. Pursers desk were very helpful in getting us the relevant details & ensuring we could rent a tux for the first gala night. The Port Agent received the package & this ensured it was in our cabin when we returned from our day out.
There were a few problems with the water, in the first week - one day necessitating cold or no showers for the afternoon/evening and we woke another day to a complimentary bottle of water outside the cabin because there had been an issue through the night that meant there was no water in the cabins - fortunately all back on by 5am so not too much of a problem. I think the refit team will be very busy in November.
Staff were wonderful especially in the Commodore club & Carinthia. We had a table for 8 and 2nd sitting which was pleasant, we felt there was more repetition in the food than earlier trips - desserts designed to turn up reworked the following day for lunchtime desserts while good from a limiting waste pov feels more leftovers rather than luxury. Also in the buffet info on the dessert & afternoon tea cake offerings was rarely put out so you might guess what something was then try it & not eat it when had it been labelled you wouldn't have been tempted to try it.
Stops were good and all bar one were new to us. Didn't get a map for Valencia being unfamiliar with how port days worked (go to the tours or pursers desk and ask for one) Dubrovnik was very hot & crowded. Venice was lovely, Sibnek was glorious. We had tenders at 2 stops and the organisation for these seemed efficient.
We don't often attend the evening shows but our table mates did and were happy with most of them. Some interesting educational & amusing talks during the day. Enjoyed Malcolm Nelsons talks on smuggling.
All in all a lovely & relaxing trip and tempted to book another
We knew this cabin was next to a "blank space" so had some concerns especially having read other comments about ice machines. However while 4180 may be the better choice in as much there is just open space next to it we didn't find the occasional noise from next door to be a problem. The ice machine cranked up around 5/6am but you were only aware of it if you were already awake it wasn't enough to wake you and occasionally when we came back at night you could occasionally here movement but my husband gets irritated easily by noise and it only made him comment to me on one occasion so it really isn't a problem. Its also nice that you have the extra unused balcony next to you only a twist away.
The archeological dig wasn't brilliant but did have some interest for us. The rest of it was just a little seaside town. Husband was getting a cold so it wasn't the best day to form an opinion
We feared it would be horribly crowded but as we weren't fussed about seeing inside any building we hada very enjoyable time wandering the streets and browsing the shops. Managed not to get lost. Was very hot.
Didn't know what we might find here but it was a delightful stop. An approach through islands. Beautiful clear waters and the old town a stunning maze of steep stepped alleyways.
Very impressive walls round the old town but very touristy & crowded. Lots of evidence of post war regeneration.
Visited the botanic gardens, they had some nice shade. Explored by ourselves and felt there was a lot of graffiti.
Only a short stop and weather was cloudy so not worth going up top as views would be limited. It was also a Jewish bank holiday so not all shops open so just walked into the town & picked up gifts to bring back.from those that were.
We didn't have a map which meant it was hard to make the most of the stop. Eventually we found a tourist information place & began to explore with more purpose. It was quite a long way from the ship to the shuttle drop in Valencia though I think with more planning the walk through the gardens would have been quite doable just the port itself that might be a problem.