We chose this cruise because of the destinations, principally destinations on the west coast of Africa that are otherwise difficult to visit. Most of the passengers appear to be very well travelled, and those to whom we spoke talked of choosing this cruise because of the destinations, including the Cape Verde Islands, Senegal, The Gambia, Côte d’Ivoire, Togo, São Tomé, and Namibia.
Unfortunately the cruise was spoiled by the cancellation of stops in Senegal and Cote d”Ivoire and horrendous land tours, some of which were free and some of which we paid for. Passengers expect that when they book a cruise, they will stop at the destinations listed. While any number of events in some parts of the world can create potential issues, there is no reason why Regent was forced to cancel not one but two stops. Dakar, Senegal is the major city of West Africa. It is a center for African culture, especially music and art. It is also a major port, and yet, at the last minute, it was cancelled and a second stop in the Cape Verde Islands was substituted. The stop in Côte d’Ivoire was also cancelled giving us another unwanted day at sea. The cancellation of these two stops on what is already a very long two was most disappointing to many passengers.
A second major problem was that the tours provided by the ship were simply terrible. We took only two of them, and elected for private tours (not through the ship). These private tours saved the day for us in every port. Does no one at Regent review and resolve tour problems? Does no one investigate what tour operators promise? Apparently not!