Having sailed on Ventura which we like, there was no problem in navigating Azura, as they are identical.( Ventura gets the covered pool, Azura instead has the outside large cinema screen).
We always use Penguin Parking, super courteous and efficient,. We dropped our luggage at 1pm,and were advised go straight to the check in desk- in five minutes we were in the buffet having lunch !! well done P&O.
The cabin an interior on Deck 12 central to aft, was ready soon after, cabin guy Sunny greeted us and asked if we needed anything. Throughout he was courteous, and un-obstrusive which we like, and kept the towels fresh and clean. He did not move our personal things about - well done …
Our cabin was fine no wear - ( yes the ship is in for re-fit end of next April )
Stair carpets and in general all fine to me, others do comment though... again the refit next spring.
Always choose Freedom Dining, and no problem throughout having a table for two, which is our preference, we never waited. Dined in the Peninsular where we found the quality has certainly gone up ( with us no complaints in the past though ) Preferred breakfast and dinner in there, whist the buffet was fine for lunch, on a minor point thought its was better there on Ventura & Britannia.
Dined once in the Glass House, the Chicken three ways for two was superb, area though more like a BAR / Lounge than for dining which it is on Ventura.
Entertainment :- Headliners always first class, had seen Astonishing so gave that night a miss, their Dusty !!! is best left to Maxine Mazunder who was on board, her Adele no where near as good as her Dusty, she was given the Manhatten, she deserves the Theatre as was the case in previous cruises.
The High Tides duo who were often in the Planet Bar were great to listen to, hope we hear them on more P&O cruises.
Guest speaker David Greenway on flying with the Queen's Flight was entertaining and interesting .
We opted for self disembarkation 7.05am - easy , quick and EARLY, Penguin arrived in two minutes, we were back home up North for 11.30am.
Warnemunde - We chose the ' MOLLI TRAIN ' excursion and so pleased we did- a 25 min ride through beautiful countryside, and a stop on the coast at a luxury hotel for coffee and cake. Really well worth doing .
Helsinki - Took the shuttle bus and walked to the ' Rock Church ' and listened to some young classical musicians.. good too, then to the Sibelius Monument, and a lovely walk back into town via the 1952 Olympic Stadium ( under renovation ) and then by the lovely Lake back into the city.
Tallin - Shuttle bus in and a walk around the compact old town, even waited to see Queen Margeritte of Denmark go into church !!! Beautiful town, long to go back.
St Petersburg - Did the Hermitage Tour, you need stamina !!! the cruise tours get in first so the first 2 hours are very quiet... madness later !!!
The Evening Boat tour with music was really good too... very informative.
Second Day - The ' On Your own ' dropped at 3 places and picked up in the afternoon, It was very DULL weather both days, so bot seen at it's best. DO beware pick pockets...I had mine ' felt ' and friends back pack - he felt the un zip... nothing got though... leaves a bad taste.
Note the port is about 15 min out of the city with views to 5 storey appt blocks about 200 yds long each !! ...no lifts, so gives the view of what life just might be like there in reality !!!
Stockholm - Pure delight, just walk around...the old ships around a quiet part of the harbour are worth an hours walk !!
Copenhagen - we did take the shuttle bus - yes it was 26c and HOT, but walked back along the pedestrian street to Nyhavn - pure delight - must go back, and then to the Royal Palace, and to the Little Mermaid, and our ship just then a 15 min walk.
Worthing noting !!! there is a new cruise terminal which will take three ships, on the far far side of the harbour- no way walkable to the Mermaid, ' Celebrity ' were using it !!! no idea if the others will follow suit - but sure to !!!
Cabin was clean, no stains, no wear, one has to accept the ship is 10 years old, the TV is not the flat screen type, but who goes on a cruise to watch TV ???? Even on the refit I am sure to stay the same... tv types please note.
Cabin guy Sunny was what we have come to expect and always have from P&O, just perfection.
Just walked to see the Rock church and the Sibelius Monument, and along the lake back into the city.
Really Outstanding- just go and see it, you need stamina as the pace is FAST !!!
Just walk around the old town - very compact and have a beer near the GATE and watch the world go by
Wander around the old boats, and then head to the old town for unique atmosphere
A true delight, MUST see the Little Mermaid !!!! and Nyhavn - with the coloured houses - boast and a multitude of cafes...