We were taking our first cruise and initial impressions were very good. Smooth transfer to Southampton from Birmingham Airport and not too long waiting to get on the ship.
Luggage arrived in our cabin and as first time cruisers, all instructions/directions on what to do and where to go were displayed.
We were on 1st sitting in Saffron and throughout the cruise, the food was exceptional as was the entertainment.
The only major flaw was that on the first day, we went onto the deck for a sunlounger and found that people had been up since 5.30am putting towels on the sunbeds and reserving them!!We spent most of the morning searching the decks for a sunbed to no avail and gave it up as a bad job!!!
Second day, exactly the same!!
Third day, found 2 beds and put them on the quoit deck as only space available.During the day, Capt Alistair Clarke came round the decks asking if everything was alright and we expressed our disappointment at the lack of loungers to be greeted with the response that there was nothing wrong with his ship and we must not be looking in the right places.Trust me, there was nowhere else to look!! I had scoured the ship. He then said "Are you first time cruisers?" to which I enquired if it was our 20th cruise does this give you the right to a sun longer? which he then chose to ignore and walked off rather arrogantly.
Apart from the Captain's arrogance, the rest of the staff were brilliant and we had a thoroughly enjoyable time meeting some lovely people.
We will certainly cruise again, but not on the Ventura as 8 dyas scrambling for a sunbed in what seemed to be like being at Butlin's was not what we expected!!!!!!!
Great beaches - plenty of taxis - reasonably priced.
Brilliant - excellent shopping - beaches - plenty to do. Best value for money from all the ports we visited in respect of shops / duty free etc..
Beaches on the other side of the island over an hour away by taxi. Not much else to do so went on a tour and visited where they had filmed the Pirates Of The Caribbean. What a disappointment!! It had probably not been touched since the film crew left. Costumes were scattered around and deteriorating in the weather.No work had been done towards the upkeep.(I cannot see Kiera Knightly using those toilets!!!!!!) Then went to botanical gardens where guides offered to take you round for $35. Declined and guides were quite abusive, but it proved to be the right decision as our party only stayed 10 minutes as there was nothing at all to see..
The pits!!! Carnival time in port and still only stayed half an hour before going back to the ship. People who had been before didn't even bother getting off as they knew what it was like. Poor shops and felt intimidated by locals.
Excellent 2 days in Barbados. Plenty to do. Much more civilised than Dominica with a far better infrastructure with lots of shops, bars, restaurants etc. Spent a lovely day at The Boatyard where entry was only $12 for 2 sunbeds, umbrella, private beach and a free rum punch. Would recommend to anyone.