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Magellan Cruise Review
3.5 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
479 Reviews

An amazing Icelandic cruise

Magellan Cruise Review by ThomasUK

8 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: Jun 2019
  • Destination: the British Isles & Western Europe

We have recently returned from a 13 night Icelandic cruise from Newcastle on the Magellan and all I can say is wow. This was our 10th cruise and definitely one of the best. I’ve sailed with CMV before, together with Celebrity and Royal Caribbean. The CMV ships can’t complete with the others when it comes to high tech modern features, but neither does they try to. What you get instead is great service, good quality food and drinks and the ability to travel from local ports, which is a major plus point for those of us who don’t live close to Southampton.

The itinerary for this cruise was first rate and we enjoyed all of the ports of call, and Iceland itself is magnificent.

We were blessed with great weather for the entire duration. I’ve heard the seas around Iceland can get a bit rough, even in summer, but we didn’t have any issues. There was one night when travelling around the north that the seas got up a bit, but the Magellan handled it perfectly and we barely felt a thing.

The ship is a little old fashioned in its décor but that’s a minor issue. It’s kept spotlessly clean by a hard-working team. The ship was full for this cruise but there was rarely a problem getting served or finding a seat. I think the most we waited was five or six minutes and this was at peak time. The staff are very attentive and we would usually have our order taken in a couple of minutes. We chose the VIP drinks package which was great value compared to other cruise lines. This included all premium drinks, gratuities, bottled water for the cabin and an invitation to a private cocktail party. It also gave a 50% discount on speciality dining. We ate in Fusion, the Indian themed restaurant twice (stunning food), and also did Chef’s Table, a sumptuous 10 course dinner with wine pairings. Highly recommended. There is also a speciality steak night but I’m not a steak lover so we didn’t try this one.

We ate each night in the Waldorf restaurant and the food was excellent. Always hot and good quality with plenty to choose from. I’ve heard complaints that the food could be luke warm but this was never the case in my experience, perhaps these complaints relate to buffet. We only used the buffet a couple of times for lunch as I’m not a fan of self service, but it seemed pretty good to me. As good as any buffet ever gets.

The entertainment team were also very good. Some of the shows weren’t my cup of tea so I gave them a miss, but the ones I did see (Broadway, Queen) were very enjoyable. The late night cabaret in the Captains Club was always worth a look too.

We’re a couple in our mid-forties and were definitely among the youngest people on the cruise, but I quite enjoyed this. We met some lovely people and had a great time. Things tended to wind down quickly after midnight, but because of the heavy itinerary we weren’t looking for late nights anyway.

We did one excursion through CMV – Loch Ness, which was excellent, and booked another independently. In Iceland we took the 8 hour Golden Circle trip with a local tour company for a third of the price of the one on the ship, so I’d recommend doing a bit of research before you go. As it was our first time in Iceland we just went ashore at the other ports and explored on our own. Everything was within walking distance of the ship.

Having done a few Royal Caribbean cruises in the last three years, I’d got a bit jaded with their massive ships which are increasingly marketed to families and young kids. They tend to be very noisy and poorly behaved. CMV with it’s adult only policy was exactly what I was looking for this time. I loved this cruise on Magellan and can’t wait to experience her sister ship Columbus in September.

ThomasUK's Full Rating Summary
Onboard Experience
Enrichment Activities
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Cabin Review

Cabin interior 5086

Perfectly located midship on deck five, just off reception. It's not plush but was very comfortable and perfectly adequate for the time we spent in it.

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews


Lovely town. Everything was close ot the ship. We wandered around and visited a museum.


A beauitful little town. We followed the walking route around the bay before coming back through the small town centre. The small brewery located in the harbour is well worth a visit on the way back to the ship for a taste of the local beers.

Golden Circle

An over night stay. On the first day we took a Golden Circle tour, booked independantly for a fraction of the ships price. An incredible experience and not to be missed.

On the second day we explored the city but it was bigger than we'd been lead to believe and didn't see all the things we wanted to.

View All 122 Golden Circle Reviews

A nice half day trip. We travelled by coach to Urquhart castle, crossed the loch by boat before taking the coach back along the other bank. I enjoyed this trip although Urquhart Castle was swamped with other coach parties that day. A large group of Spanish tourists were especially loud and disruptive, spoiling the expereince somewhat.

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