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1,334 Africa Cruise Reviews

I loved the 5 night cruise. The xtra day is worth it. We were on the ship Sunday at 10h00 which gave us almost a full day on board. We were fortunate to get off at both islands which was awesome. Very hot though so take precaution. The ... Read More
I loved the 5 night cruise. The xtra day is worth it. We were on the ship Sunday at 10h00 which gave us almost a full day on board. We were fortunate to get off at both islands which was awesome. Very hot though so take precaution. The pool at Pomene is great and very enjoyable. The locals at PI offer anything for sale. From Cigarettes to Loacal Rum, clothes and more. The food in buffet area was a bit dissapointing but you definately will not go hungry and you have the dinning room as an option. Entertainment was excellent. We loved late nights on the deck. We met new friends and enjoyed different cultures. The teatre entertainment was fantastic and Eric brilliant. We part taked in Masterchef, Bingo and various quiz nights. We enjoyed the entertainment every night in Savannah Lounge. We spent time in the Library and Casino. A bit dissapointing is the photo prices but not forced to buy it. All in all a great ship and memorable cruise. Booked our next cruise 10 Feb 2020 and 26 Dece 2020. Looking forward to the 14 day cruise Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
I had an awesome time indeed!! It's such a luxurious experience and it's not even expensive, it's worth every penny. From the friendly staff, to cleanliness of the rooms, passages each corner is extremely well taken care of. ... Read More
I had an awesome time indeed!! It's such a luxurious experience and it's not even expensive, it's worth every penny. From the friendly staff, to cleanliness of the rooms, passages each corner is extremely well taken care of. I don't know how they do it. The entertainment is extremely exciting and for everyone to part. The food is fresh and there was a wide variety of meals to choose from. OMG the club!! Dj was the bomb from Thursday to Saturday night. Yoh hai shame I had a blast and I want to do it again soon. The island was such a beautiful and private place the boats pick up and drop off on time. Infact everything regarding time on the MSC is prompt, no delay the queue must go on. Staff have lots of respect, our cabins were clean on time. Personal belongs kept in the same spot where you it. Overall I want to say the trip really depends on the type of crew you are with. The group of friends I went with were so awesome, which made the stay even more excellent for me. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
As a Diamond Club Card Holder and recently invited to the Launch Party for the MSC Orchestra on the 16th November 2019 and then Booked for the First 4 night cruise, commencing on the 17th November to say I was a Happy passenger would be ... Read More
As a Diamond Club Card Holder and recently invited to the Launch Party for the MSC Orchestra on the 16th November 2019 and then Booked for the First 4 night cruise, commencing on the 17th November to say I was a Happy passenger would be nothing but further than the truth. We were so looking forward to this cruise, as we were going to celebrate our 55th Wedding Anniversary on Board this 4 day cruise. Initially I informed MSC that as I had already booked on the cruise immediately following the Launch Party, could they please link my Launch Party cabin to my Cruise cabin. (My cabin number was supplied to them) I received a email back to inform me that this was not at all possible. On the Saturday 16th November '19 I arrival at N shed my wife and were ushered into a marquee to wait boarding. Due to certain "circumstances" the Boarding time was delayed by almost an hour and a half. Diamond Card holders and other VIP Guest's were then herded into N Shed and joined a queue for Boarding. While waiting to board a chance chat to a MSC employer in the shed about the fact that when I asked to have my Launch cabin linked to my cruise cabin been denied, he promptly took our Cruise Booking letter plus those of at least 3 other passengers with the same problem and returned with our Cabin Cards all linked to our Cruise Cabins. Done in 5 minutes. The Launch Party went ahead with no major problems. In fact it was the highlight of our Holiday. However, the next morning the 20 or So Diamond Club Card holders, "Cruise Passengers" were informed that we had to disembark and re-board once we passed through Passport control. In the morning then 20 of us were formed up and were escorted off the the ship with a MSC Staff member. However once we were in the Terminal we were left to fend for ourselves. We had to join the queue for the "Fast Trackers" of the new Cruise passengers embarking, which took for ever to get through to Passport Control. Surely MSC could have arranged with Home Affairs before hand to process the 20+ cruise passengers on the Saturday and thus saved the hassle and inconvenience of seasoned Cruise travelers having to Disembark and back on again standing in long hot queue's?? Some I may add with chronic back problems. Once on Board our "Usual" well organised Gold Card / Diamond Card experience fell terribly short. There was No welcome back party for Gold Card/ Diamond card holders. No Chocolate Ship in Cabin. No Gowns in room, only slippers. No Dance Lessons, No free Sauna /Spar Invitation, No notification of a "Free" meal at the Specialty Restaurant. No Photo taken with the Captain. When I inquired at the Voyager Club Office and spoke to a Mary Ann as to why all the above had not been given as per previous cruises, she informed me that a lot of it was all explained in the letter sent out on the First day. I informed her that we did NOT receive such letter, but she promptly shifted the blame to Housekeeping department. While I was at the counter I was joined by no less than at least 5 other disgruntled passengers with similar "concerns". Mary Ann did however offer to give us each a MSC Backpack that evening. However when it didn't arrive at the given time, again she Blamed Housekeeping. For Dinner we were Booked for 2nd sitting with 5 other Diamond Card holders. Two of them I believe are pretty active on Social Media in South African circles under "Friends of MSC". All were very unhappy on how Diamond Card Holders were treated. Now are also questioning whether it is any incentive to cruise, in order for all passengers to up their status on the MSC Voyager Club Card incentive Rewards System. Of all the many times we've cruised this Dinner time experience in the L'ibiscus Restaurant must rate as the worst my wife and I have ever experienced on board any MSC Cruise liner. During the 4 nights we dinned there, we experienced the following: No Castle Larger Beer. (Hello, this is a South African Cruise season AND it is on the Wines List) The Liner docked Saturday so there was ample time to stock up on all the Required South African drinks and Food lines. Our waiter's English was poor and therefore service was lacking. At times we waited over 30 minutes just to get ice cubes. The delay between courses was far too long. On one occasion a fellow passenger at my table asked for the Indian/ Asian menu. Well it never arrived. ( NB! The Asian Menu was posted in a Glass cabinet at the entrance to the Dinning Room) Food presentation also fell short as we were not offered anything else when ordering Mutton Curry and Rice. That's all one got. No accompanying Sambal's or condiments were on offer. We were also highly disappointed that on "Italian Night" there was NO Usual singing and waving of serviettes as the Kitchen Staff raced through the Dinning Rooms as we all waived our Serviettes singing " Volare". As for our Cabin. Our room was only finished been cleaned at lunchtime on day 2. Plus the bed covers were not put on the bed until our last day. There were no tissues paper in the bathroom. Of the 2 dispensers in the shower, one was completely empty and the 2nd one wouldn't dispense. When I asked the gentleman to bring me his supervisor, he never complied. Besides the Tea/Coffee/Water stations positioned in the wrong areas, one could never find Hot water for tea or coffee, let alone find coffee sachets. One would have to wait until the gentleman taking care of these stations happened to pass by to get a coffee sachet from his pocket. As for the Duty Free shops, VERY few items were priced. When I asked the assistant as to why there were no prices? A very rude man replied that he was on his own and hadn't had time to put up the prices from Euro to Dollars. Every night I went back to check and by the last and 4th night there were STILL no prices up. I finalized my account the morning of departure and proceeded to breakfast. When I tried to disembark the Security Officer informed me that I had to report back to Reception as there was a problem with my account. When I joined the queue at reception I had to wait at least 25 minutes before I was served only to be told that it was a "misunderstanding" and I could continue to Disembark. In the meantime my wife who was in front of me was left standing at the bottom of the gangway on the dock waiting for me and not knowing what had gone wrong with me. So in closing. To say was this one of the worst cruises we've been on, I have to say, YES. Will I cruise again with MSC? Yes of course. But NEVER again on the first cruise. It was so sad, as this was not the way we wanted to remember our 55th Wedding Anniversary, but alas it will be remembered for all the wrong reasons. May I also add, that as I am on Social Media I see a lot of of other passengers gripes and complaints and the replies they in turn receive back from MSC Customer-care and it seems their replies tend to be a lot of "Cut & Paste" replies. Hopefully my concerns are forwarded to the MSC South Africa Director as well as the team in Naples, and the reply sent to me is not the usual, "Cut & Paste one?? Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
It was my first time to Pomene island and the place was good except that i did not enjoy myself due to the beach which made my body to react to the water so bad. The place is so big. The service was so good, especially at the bars on deck ... Read More
It was my first time to Pomene island and the place was good except that i did not enjoy myself due to the beach which made my body to react to the water so bad. The place is so big. The service was so good, especially at the bars on deck 5, big ups to Putro from Bali who was not just the bar server but also became a friend. entertainment was on top at the disco, it was so much fun. The ship is so big and beautiful with so many bars to cater for all with the bar service to go an extra mile to assist. cabins were neat and up to a good standard. Dining was perfect and the food was mouth watering with a number to choose from, midnight snacks was also on point. I would recommend everybody to sail on MSC as its the best ship i have ever came across, this was my third time sailing with them and surely is not my last time. Hope to see you soon. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
Fun
I chose the MSC Orchestra because i have cruised with MSC Musica before, so i wanted to try something different for a change and it was a great experience after-all, i invited friends to join me this time and i was happy that they've ... Read More
I chose the MSC Orchestra because i have cruised with MSC Musica before, so i wanted to try something different for a change and it was a great experience after-all, i invited friends to join me this time and i was happy that they've also enjoyed, we are already planning our next cruise for 2020.the only thing that i was not impressed with was having to queue long lines for packages that we have already bought online before the cruise date, it would be very nice if whatever package you buy before the cruise you find it in your cabin and you don't have to queue long lines,The staff crew on the ship was very nice and friendly, the buffet was awesome, i never went hungry on the curies i was always full, but at-least before i went to bed i always made sure i burned some calories at the disco,It was always nice to come back to a clean cabin.we had fun fun fun, looking forward to my next cruise in 2020. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
I have just returned from a 4 day sailing of the MSC Mereviglia. This was my 11th Cruise, but the first on MSC. We were myself, 55 yr old mom and her 23 yr old daughter. This was overall the worse cruise I have ever been on., but of ... Read More
I have just returned from a 4 day sailing of the MSC Mereviglia. This was my 11th Cruise, but the first on MSC. We were myself, 55 yr old mom and her 23 yr old daughter. This was overall the worse cruise I have ever been on., but of course- not all bad! We were informed via email ahead of time that we would not be going to Ocean Cay, as it was not ready to open as scheduled. A disappointment, but not that important to me personally. Our only other port was to be Nassau, Bahamas, but that was changed to Cozumel right before sailing. This fact is important, as this change was NOT communicated to guests ahead of time. I should mention that this sailing had a majority of guest that are Travel Advisors (including myself) . The only way some of us were aware of the port change ahead of sailing is because we emailed MSC and asked them. But the information was never put out FROM MSC. The port made no difference to us, but I spoke to many guests that had excursions planned and looked forward to Nassau. For these port changes, guests were given a $100 OBC per stateroom and 20% a future cruise. The MSC Mereviglia is a very very beautiful ship! The Atrium with its Swarovski stairs and the Promenade with its ever-changing LED dome are some of the indoor highlights, along with a spectacular display of wines/champagnes. There are many common gathering spaces, which were both comfortable and functional. The main pool, the Atmosphere Pool, was beautifully laid out, with soft cabana beds, and ample lounge chairs, as well as a theatre sized movie screen. The Horizon pool was also outdoors- very small with sunbathing deck. There was also a very nice indoor pool (which would be great to have in inclement weather). The main dining rooms (included) were completely unremarkable. As for the food, it was very bland and basic, as was the service. After the first night, I felt no desire to go back (but I did). These dining rooms are on set early/late times, which I personally do not like. I also do not normally eat at the ship buffet (except for a quick bite during pool time) but I did eat dinner at the buffet one night, and it was actually quite good. Fresh, well attended, clean. The pizza is excellent!! We did not try the specialty restaurants. However..... we “attempted” the Chef’s Table. Here’s the story (and I’m sorry it’s so long, , but it dragged on throughout our 4 days...). Immediately upon boarding I called and made a reservation for the Chef’s Table ($120 pp) for our Cozumel night. We made several attempts over the next 2 days to confirm this, but guest services could not help, and specialty dining didn’t answer. This involved us waiting in the guest services LONG line more than once, as well as numerous phone calls, all with promises to “call back” but no one ever did. We wasted so much time. By the Cozumel night, we finally learned that our reservation had been made for the wrong night (our last night). So here’s the kicker- by the 3rd night, I had become so sick with the flu (yes, I’m a nurse and it’s the actual flu) that I could barely get out of bed. So my daughter carried on with the saga. The reservation had been the wrong day AND now I was sick, so we were canceling. She went to the specialty restaurant in person, only to be told that they were starting a staff meeting and she would have to “get out”. She was literally pushed out the door by a Ukrainian woman. Back in the room, she looked at our account and found we had been charged $138 fee! This made me so mad that I forced myself to get dressed and go back to the restaurant with her. We spoke to the head of specialty dining, Mustafa, who was no less than completely dismissive and condescending to us. We found out that THEY had intentionally changed our reservation night to accommodate another group and NEVER TOLD US! And then still wanted to charge us for canceling, acted like they were doing us a favor to credit our account and waved us out. And I was so sick! Our cabin was 9109, deck 9, midship, B2 Balcony, typical, nicely done, with a nicer bathroom than most. Be aware the lifeboats are right there, but not obstructing. Only one US outlet. Our cabin steward, Pari, was exceptional, even allowing us to stay in the cabin late on debarkation day, as I was so sick I could barely move. We found the onboard music to be bland and lacking variety. Not bad, just repetitive and boring. Same singer in the atrium area each night, a stiff jazz trio elsewhere, it was like “dinner music” everywhere. I cannot comment on the onboard shows, as we didn’t go to any. We did go to the Cirque du Soleil cocktail show “Viaggo”. $18pp included one cocktail of a type of “tiki punch” of their choice. The Cirque shows were all sold out when we embarked, but we learned we were able to go on “standby”, and we were able to get in. The show was not the caliber of a full Cirque show, but was very nice and we thought worth the $18 ticket. We spent a lot of time at the pools, one day at Atmosphere, one at Horizon. In each case, I got up at 7am to secure a pool BED. We stayed there from 7am throughout the rest of the day, only leaving for lunch. Cocktail service was virtually nonexistent, so we had to go up to the bars. Bartenders were generally accommodating. We had the “easy” drink package, AKA cheap one. We had to be creative about ordering, which was a hassle. Example: a Pina colada was not covered in our package, but we could order a Virgin Pina colada plus a double shot of Bacardi, and just combine. All bartenders allowed this, some even just went ahead and mixed it for you. There was NO tequila included in this package, hence, no margaritas. MCS has 3 tier beverage packaging, but it’s really not well thought out. The next tier up is nearly double the price, so a hard sell, yet the easy package was really a reasonably priced disappointment. MSC should go to 2 tiers- regular and premium, and adjust their pricing. I cannot comment on the spa or spa services, or fitness areas in general, as I did not use. We did go up to the Aquapark to check it out. Lots of kids (of course) and all wet, slippery surfaces with children running and climbing. That sort of thing makes me too nervous to watch, and we did not see much for MSC employees monitoring this. We did not actually use the water slides, as there appeared to be a lengthy process of signing waivers and instructions first (20 min +), so we didn’t take the time. The ports: This sailing was a 4 day, scheduled for a sea day, Nassau day, and private island day. Prior to sailing, we were informed via email that the island “wasn’t ready” and as such, we would not be going. But then, a couple days before sailing, we found out (I called) that we would NOT be going to Nassau, but Cozumel instead. I personally have been to both enough times that it didn’t really matter one way or the other. However, it DOES matter to a lot of people, people who booked based on Nassau and made plans and excursion reservations. Also, we spoke to many people onboard who did not even know about the change until the were on the ship. That is BAD communication on MSCs part. All in all, I think I’d like a give MSC another try- probably on the Seaside. But this was a very disappointing sailing for many reasons. We made the best of it, and we still had a great time, even with blah food and the flu! My daughter and I have traveled together on cruises, all-inclusives , and across Europe, so we have realistic travel expectations. As my 11th Cruise, I think I have a fair idea of the good, the bad, and the ugly of cruising. After (only) 4 days, I was ready for this cruise to be over and not really sad to leave (I’m always sad to leave a cruise). So this was a very different experience for me. I’m confident the next will be better! Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
We chose this cruise, as it was part of an Imagine Cruising package. The land content, Indian Tour, was most enjoyable. Once we boarded the Costa Victoria, things went spiralling downhill at a quick rate of knots. The room was very ... Read More
We chose this cruise, as it was part of an Imagine Cruising package. The land content, Indian Tour, was most enjoyable. Once we boarded the Costa Victoria, things went spiralling downhill at a quick rate of knots. The room was very ordinary, discoloured and paper thin towels, NO TOILETRIES, and the double bed was similar to sleeping on the floor. We boarded later in the afternoon, so we went to our cabin, (which, I might add, cost a further AUD$2,000.00 for a porthole), and unloaded our belongings. We then proceeded to the bar area at the rear of the ship to enjoy a few drinks. This as where the "fun" began. The barman explained to us that our pre-paid beverage package was the most limited restrictive beverage package that we have ever experienced!! The beer ration was limited to One plastic cup of draft Heinekin, or, a small bottled beer I've never heard of. I proceeded to have three of these bottled beers, and on my forth visit, was informed by a different bartender, that in actual fact, I had to pay for the bottled beer, which the previous attendant told me, were included. So, after much anxious arguments later, I was informed that it was my lucky day, as the original attendant returned very apologetic. So, here we are, back to ONE BEER, being the Heinekin, in a plastic cup!! Our package was advertised as a SELECTION of beers. NOOO, only one draft in a plastic cup!! My wife likes to enjoy a wine, which was very similar to vinegar. We were shown a list of drinks that was on the bar. This list consisted of blue dots, (for our package), and was extremely limited in selection. I then visited the main service desk on level five, to enquire as to the limited beverage package, and also, to ask to have the gratuities taken off our room account, which I, and most people I know, do the same. We Australians give tips whenever we receive good courteous service. I was told that the 10 EUROS, per day, per head, per cabin, was indeed mandatory. I informed the service officer that this was the only Cruise Line that does not allow the passenger to opt out of gratuities. He then went onto informing me, quite rudely, that my information was not true. I might add, that we have been on many Cruise Lines around the world, and have not experienced mandatory gratuities. The bistro doesn't open until 7.00pm!!! The meals that were served up, were nothing short of slop, sitting on a bed of white rice. No carvery, The bar service was non-existent. There were three attendants standing near our table, and when I asked for some beverage service, he told me that he only cleans tables, and NONE of them serve drinks to tables!! Unheard of on any other ship we have been on. So, I had to leave my very ordinary meal, and walk to a tiny makeshift bar to order drinks. We enjoy a nice Shiraz, or Merlot with our evening meal, and the wine that we were permitted on our package was unpalatable. Disgusting, even coupled with the extremely ordinary food. After the terrible dinner, we always take bottled water to our room, so I went to the bar, and asked for two small bottles of water. After the barman checked our wonderful beverage package, he informed me that we were NOT ENTITLED TO A SMALL BOTTLE OF WATER!! So, we asked for two plastic cups, and filled these with water, which mostly had spillied by the time we walked back to our room. Also, there was no water supplied in our room. That was the final straw for both of us, and as the ship was in dock for two days, we booked our flights back to Australia on Singapore Airlines, and were leaving the ship at 6.30 pm the next day, as the ship was leaving at 9.00 pm. The cruise was for 14 days, and we were extremely glad that we did not stay on it. As we had all day, the next day, to fill in, we disembarked , and were going to take in the sights of Mumbai, but as we were about to get off, the security woman scanned our cards, and ordered us to stand aside, much to our embarrassment. We couldn't work out why, because of her limited grasp of English, but we did hear the word "money' mentioned. We were ordered back to the service desk and told to pay the 20 EURO "service fee", before they would let us off. Our bags were all still in our room. That afternoon I went to the bar to order my wife a cup of coffee, (which, surprise,surprise, was within our beverage package), and the barman told me that I would have to pay for the coffee, as the service desk had cancelled our cards!! Never have we been so glad to get off any ship in our lives. The whole enterprise cost us around AUD$6,000.00. So, any of you who are thinking of a cruise with Costa Cruiselines, you have our sympathy. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
This cruise was very reasonably priced and the itinerary appealed to us. In fact it was so cheap that my expectations were not high.We had been on a number of cruises with different cruise lines including The Queen Mary so I feel we are in ... Read More
This cruise was very reasonably priced and the itinerary appealed to us. In fact it was so cheap that my expectations were not high.We had been on a number of cruises with different cruise lines including The Queen Mary so I feel we are in a position to compare. First of all, I’m afraid the embarkation was chaotic, as all passengers seem to arrive together. The result was that it took us over 3 hours to embark which was not pleasant. On the other hand, disembarkation went really smoothly with no delays. The cabin and we had a balcony was surprisingly good , not luxurious , a bit dated but the bed was comfortable and we had as much space as we needed. We had been allocated the earlier dining which didn’t always suit us , so we very often ate in the buffet area which gave us more flexibility. The food was fine , not gourmet but we enjoyed it. The best choice was definitely as you would expect Italian especially the pasta and husband loved the bread and the desserts. The theatre shows were mixed, excellent and mediocre but I would suggest appealed to a variety of tastes. Personally, I thoroughly enjoyed the Italian tenor and The Beatles look-a-likes.Though not as sophisticated as others we have enjoyed on other cruises, the shows were entertaining. The shore excursions on the whole were excellent. Overall, the service from all the crew was A1.Unfortunately the behaviour of some of the guests was abhorrent. They were rude to the crew and to the other guests. Thankfully it was only a minority but I was delighted that I had a cabin. I would suggest a movie in the theatre in the afternoons especially during sea days, and notices regarding towel- hugging chairs and sun beds around the pool area would alleviate tensions and hence make the cruise more pleasant for all. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
Background: We had booked a 14-day fly/cruise package directly through Fred Olsen leaving from Cape Town, visiting Port Elizabeth, Richard’s Bay, Mayotte, Madagascar and the Seychelles. Flights: Instead of the direct flight we were ... Read More
Background: We had booked a 14-day fly/cruise package directly through Fred Olsen leaving from Cape Town, visiting Port Elizabeth, Richard’s Bay, Mayotte, Madagascar and the Seychelles. Flights: Instead of the direct flight we were supposed to have, we had to go through Johannesburg, collect our luggage, go through customs, re-check our luggage, change terminals and take another flight to Cape Town. It was a nightmare and took 22 hours. For the return flight we had a 5-hour flight to Dohar, a 3 hour wait at midnight followed by a 7-hour flight to UK. What upset me most about the whole experience was that other passengers had direct flights both ways. Ports of Call: In Port Elizabeth, the debunking service failed to show. The ship was 12 hours late leaving the port. In Richard's Bay, our berth was next to a Coal Factory and everything on the ship including us was covered in a thin layer of black soot. The shore excursion arranged by the cruise was terrible. We completely missed the next port of call, Mayotte in the Comoro Islands. This is a rarely visited island and we were looking forward to visiting it. Disembarkation: In Seychelles we had to be out of our cabin by 8:00 AM. Our flight was at 6:15 PM. We were left for hours queuing in the 34 degree non air-conditioned Airport. Cabin/Food/Entertainment/Service: The cabin was nice, the food was excellent, the entertainment was very professional, the service by the crew was first rate and the port talk etc. were very informative. The Ship: is a bit dated but comfortable and small enough to give an intimate atmosphere. Summary: It is a shame that these administrative disasters spoilt an otherwise very pleasant cruise. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We chose this cruise as we had previously cruised on Regent Seven Seas Voyager and enjoyed it very much. Unfortunately we found that it did not live up to our expectations. The food in La Veranda was average, Compass Rose was better ... Read More
We chose this cruise as we had previously cruised on Regent Seven Seas Voyager and enjoyed it very much. Unfortunately we found that it did not live up to our expectations. The food in La Veranda was average, Compass Rose was better and the service good but unfortunately we were very disappointed in Sette Mari which was our favourite on our previous cruise. The specialty restaurants were okay but nothing special. Shore excursions were mixed, some good and some a total waste of time. We thoroughly enjoyed the excursions to Petra and Jerusalem/Bethlehem. Petra itself was fascinating and we wish we could have stayed there longer. Our concierge suite was lovely on deck 9 and the cabin staff kept everything immaculate. We found the shows in the theatre to be very average so we did not go every night and often went to the Voyager Lounge for drinks and company with our new friends. Overall we enjoyed this cruise but not as good as our previous Regent Experience Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We recently returned from our Nile River cruise on the Viking Ra, October 1. It was an amazing, eye-opening experience! We traveled with dear friends, booked the cruise almost 2 years ago while on another cruise. Our husbands were ... Read More
We recently returned from our Nile River cruise on the Viking Ra, October 1. It was an amazing, eye-opening experience! We traveled with dear friends, booked the cruise almost 2 years ago while on another cruise. Our husbands were thrilled, almost giddy with excitement at the thought of seeing the pyramids. The wives were a bit apprehensive and remained so until we arrived in Egypt. Yes, we did have armed security on the bus with us. In several locations we had police escorts in front and/or behind the bus. But really, at no time did we feel unsafe. Not even when some news outlets were exaggeratedly or falsely reporting "chaos" in Cairo the first few days we were there. We were in the location cited... No chaos! We were, however, unprepared for how extremely poor, beyond anything we had ever seen before!, Cairo and Egypt in general is. There is an enormous, enormous difference between what you see driving around and what you experience. Also, maybe because of the sand storms? it just seems so much...dirtier? I understand, I mean, how do you clean up after a sand storm? Especially since there will be another one right around the corner. But they also tend not to finish buildings, which lends an almost post-apocalyptic feel to the landscape. The Cairo hotels, the Nile Ritz Carlton pre-cruise and the Intercontinental City Star post-cruise were wonderful. Although the buffet was more extensive at the Intercontinental, I thought the food was better at the Ritz. Both rooms were beautifully appointed and very comfortable. Both had tight security. Anyway, the cruise and the ship. The program directors (PDs) and other ship staff are amazing! Our PD, Ahmed (they split you into 2 groups), was so knowledgeable and enthusiastic. His love of his subject (both are Egyptologists) and joy in sharing it shone through. He made the sites we visited come alive for us and adding immensely to our enjoyment of the trip. The rest of the staff, well, it's Viking. They were a mix of local and international. I did notice a few minor things that frankly I think would not be quite up to par with Viking European river cruises or their ocean cruises, but as I said, minor and everyone is extremely eager to please. And they really did a better job than some mainstream cruise lines I've been on. Our suite, on deck 2, physically, was lovely. As pictured and described. Two rooms, living room with small sofa, chair and coffee table, and a desk and chair. Closed storage shelves that we used for more clothing storage. Mini bar and TV. One thing I particularly liked was the storage cubbies by the door. We kept our hats, sunglasses, umbrella (for shade), my purse there, ready to to out the door. Also kept the hair dryer in one as they are next to the desk and I used that plug. Bedroom was nice, but a Queen bed, not a king. Hubby and I are both... large and used to a king but it was fine. Bedside tables have 1 small drawer that was difficult to open (both of them, maybe weather related?). I would have liked more closet space because I had longer hanging tops, not tunics, but hip length and they didn't fit next to or over the safe on the short side. Hubby's shirts didn't either. 2XL run long. But we managed to share. The bathroom was very nice. The rooms are smaller than they appear in Viking's photos, but certainly comfortable.Now for the negative, and it's a biggie! We were pretty much unable to enjoy our cabin anytime we were sailing! Sleeping was difficult. Whenever we were under way, there was a STRONG fuel odor in our cabin. Some nights of woke us up coughing, and we both use CPAP machines (changing the filters as soon as we get home). I finally complained and when they came and checked to see if it actually did smell, they asked if we had opened the balcony door. No. So an engineer came. His solution was to turn the AC fan to high, thermostat down to 50, and leave the bedroom and bathroom doors open. After 10 minutes turn the thermostat back. Surprisingly, that worked. For about an hour. Our friends, one cabin back opposite side, had the same issue. For another couple, one deck down, it was so bad, they were moved into another cabin! Did I want to spend all day in my cabin while we were sailing? Well, obviously not. But some days, I might have appreciated a nap, but I could not be in there because of the smell. And it was obnoxious to be awakened, gagging, on the stench of fuel on multiple nights. The shore excursions were handled very well. My husband's favorite excursion was the trip to Giza to see the Pyramids and the Sphinx. He had dreamed of it for so long and to actually finally do it was amazing! My favorite was Nefertari's Tomb. To see those amazing carvings and paintings, in situ, still so vibrant and beautiful, so many thousands of years later, well, words fail me. Everywhere we went, we had to brave the "Valley of the Vendors" and let me tell you, they are aggressive! They will follow you to the steps of the bus! We did several of the optional excursions as well. I felt the market and dinner was a bit overpriced. We had a short walk with our TD through part of the market then were on our own. We four walked for a few minutes, then our husbands went into a tiny shop while my friend and I waited outside. The security guard came by with a few of the group, He waited until our husbands came out and basically gathered us up to go with him. So we did (if your security guard indicates you should stay with him, maybe you should listen to him, right?). Dinner was good, but not great. Both my friend and I are scared of heights, but our husbands insisted we all go on the hot air balloon ride. In fact, my daughter told me I could not come home if I didn't do it! LOL Anyway, we did. We stood behind our husbands so we could not look down, which made it OK. We both had a little concerned when our pilot took us up higher than a lot of the other balloons, but settled fairly quickly. I got my pictures and after about 15 minutes was done and ready to get off. The ride went on for 45 more minutes! We both agreed we were glad we did it, but wished it had been just that 45 minutes shorter. However, our husbands loved it. Be warned before reading on, this may come under the heading of TMI. One thing, well, 2 things, you might want to take along with you. Immodium and electrolyte packets (they make Pedialyte for adults in packets). About half the ship was affected with...intestinal symptoms, and I don't mean stomach. Pharaoh's curse? If you forget or don't bring any Immodium, ask at reception. Totally different from an ocean cruise. They have anti mal pills that they will give out 4 or 6 at time. Ask as soon as you need them! They put bottled water in the bathroom. Use it to brush your teeth! I didn't to start with and regretted it. My husband and friend had no issue. Most people were able to carry on. A couple missed shore excursions. I missed Abu Simbel! Not just that. I found the heat brutal and the first 105° day developed a blinding migraine. Barely made it back to the bus. Temps at Abu Simbel were 110°. I hated missing it but was afraid that between the symptoms I was having and heat and possibility of another migraine, I just couldn't risk it. The rest of my party went and loved it. They all tolerated the heat better, but all said Abu Simbel almost did them all in. They looked wrung out when they got back. One woman actually did get a migraine from the heat/sun. she got back to the ship, took meds and we didn't see her until the next day. If you are sensitive you heat, plan accordingly. I know there has been a lot of chat about the alcohol on board. I am not much of drinker. I had a gin & tonic at the cocktail parties. I thought it was fine. The rest of our group had wine, both red and white with lunch and dinner and seemed to enjoy it. I know they were concerned because I told them what I had read, but no one seemed to dislike it. I found the food quite good, except no pork bacon or sausage, which I enjoy when I travel because I don't eat it at home. Just as well, I suppose. Of course, due to the number of passengers, choices were limited but to be expected. I did not find it to be a problem. And there was ginger tea and chicken soup available for the more ill amongst us. Remember hat, sunglasses, sunscreen even if you don't normally wear them. I think almost everyone had a hat and one man asked me if I'd gotten my hat in Luxor. His wife said he didn't want to bring one and now wanted one! Both of our husbands bought crushable Panama style hats with a wide brim (they normally wear ball caps), and my friend wore a hat, which she never does (I always do, migraines, remember?). Maybe a cooling towel? We had them. Maybe they helped a little. Or it was psychological. On our trip, our TDs took care of the bathroom attendants. We just flashed a V sign for Viking. But they give you a limited amount, maybe a couple of squares. I took the ends of about 10 rolls, flattened, in a large ziploc. I took a snack size ziploc put one a day in to carry in my purse. The TD suggested getting some from the ship. Our last day, a group of us went to the Grand Egyptian Museum. Warning: all purses, backpacks, etc. must be left on the bus! And no pictures allowed in the conservation area. We made a pit stop before the tour. Our guide had to get paper towels (not TP!!) for us to use! In the museum! Granted it's the conservation area and the museum is not open but employees have to bring their own?! One woman commented that we all have TP, but it's in our purses on the bus. BTW, personally I do not recommend this excursion. WAY overpriced to see 3 conservation labs (NO pictures) and the (construction zone) entrance hall with the statue of Ramses II. My husband says he agrees it was way overpriced, but he does recommend it. And your feet and shoes will get filthy! Mostly just sand, dust, dirt, but sometimes you need to mind where you walk. Be aware if you have germophobic tendencies, you may want to take along your favorite wipes and save sandals for the boat. My friend alternated 2 pair of leather flats that she doesn't know can be saved. They look so worn and scuffed. They weren't brand new, but not old. I wore a pair of Rothy's (with a different insole). I actually rinsed them several times after a morning excursion and they dried by evening. Couldn't wait to wash then once I got home. SO glad I didn't wear my Tieks as usual, they'd have been destroyed. OK, now that I've written a novel if anyone still has anyone questions, please ask or PM me. Let me end with saying again that it was an amazing trip and the experience of a lifetime, something I never thought we would actually get to do! Cruising on the Nile River is fascinating. To see the date palms, all the beautiful green on the banks of the river, and the Great Sahara beyond...It's something I've read about, and quite frankly, never quite really believed I would ever see! There is a special beauty and I feel very privileged to have experienced this trip. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
This was our first Viking cruise and it was amazing. We started our adventure with the optional Israel pre-cruise land tour. The tour guide, Jo, was amazing. We visited all the biblical sites and more. The Dead Sea Scroll Museum and the ... Read More
This was our first Viking cruise and it was amazing. We started our adventure with the optional Israel pre-cruise land tour. The tour guide, Jo, was amazing. We visited all the biblical sites and more. The Dead Sea Scroll Museum and the Wailing Wall did not disappoint. We stayed at the King David Hotel in Jerusalem which was elegant but dated. We had a great group of travelers which made a dream vacation even better. Then we flew to Cairo very early in the morning. We stayed at the Ritz Carlton were security was paramount and tantamount the the TSA.this hotel was the best one we stayed at. It was very modern. We had a tourist police with our tour the entire stay. The pyramids were amazing. We took the optional market place tour. I wouldn’t recommend it. We just walked down busy streets of a market where we were continually harassed to buy things. This was true of the entire trip. To exit any of the sites we saw we had to go through a market place with aggressive sellers. We referred to it as “running the gauntlet”. Take antibiotics and anti-diarrheal medicine along. Almost everyone was touched by the intestinal bug. We had to drink bottled water the entire time. The tour provided this at no cost. It was HOT. Be prepared for that. The wifi on the ship was poor. 3G. The internet at the hotels was great. The cruise ship was small but very nice. We flew to Luxor to catch the ship. We also took the Abu Simbel excursion and flew there for the day. My husband did the hot air balloon ride and said it was amazing. The food was very good but not exceptional. My tiramisu had been previously frozen and not completely thawed. The staff was top notch. They treated you like a queen or pharaoh. The temples and sites we visited were amazing. The guides were informative and friendly. They were experts in ancient Egyptology. We never felt unsafe which surprised me. Be prepared to see trash all over the place and extreme poverty. Our trip went smoothly and Viking expedited matters at the airports. We never waited for tickets as our guide had them. Be prepared for really bad bathrooms and always carry Kleenex. Our guide tipped the bathroom attendants but they still begged for more. Everyone everywhere had their hands out for money. Bring lots of dollar bills for tips. This was easi;y the best trip we ever have taken. I highly recommend it. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
I rarely take the time to write reviews, but I think that cruises are something that a lot of people depend on reviews to help them in their choice. I am the same way, and I should have paid closer attention I guess. We sailed very ... Read More
I rarely take the time to write reviews, but I think that cruises are something that a lot of people depend on reviews to help them in their choice. I am the same way, and I should have paid closer attention I guess. We sailed very recently on at the end of August 2019. So to start off, Carnival Valor is an older ship built in 2004 I believe, and it does show outside and inside of the cruise liner. On the outside appearance there is quite a bit of rust showing on the hull and a lot of over painting of rust areas. The deck areas seem in decent shape, and they work hard to keep the surfaces clean. The inside stateroom, we had a balcony stateroom, there are several issues. There are light switches missing, or pushed into the receptacles, lights not working, lights blinking, receptacles not working, and very few of them, stains on carpet, and I think every glass on the outside of ship had not been cleaned in quite some time. The main attraction decks, 3,4, and 5 were actually pretty nice, but there was always elevators out of service, so wait times were sometimes up to 10 minutes, so be prepared for stair usage. The dining areas just seemed dated, almost a 1950's maybe 60's look to them, and just did not give you that wow feeling around the buffet areas, but the main dining room, Lincoln, was in nice shape, and had a comfortable feeling to it. There is a lot of 4 person booths, so do not expect to be sitting with a large group of people, and meeting over dinner. I am going to do my best and be nice about the food, cause hey, that's why we do cruises right. Well, to be honest the main dining food was just, NOT GOOD! Appetizers, yeah very, very small portions, you will need to order more than 1, like the shrimp cocktail comes with 5 very small shrimp, fried calamari you will get 3 as well.. The main courses, are always a treat, if they are tasty, but sadly not so. The taste of most items were bland, or just not worth eating, and most of the time we left over half of it on the plate, and left the dining hall before dessert. The salads were OK, but it seemed they used store bought type dressings, and sometimes they would have a smell as if they had been left out too long, my wife even felt a little sick after eating a Cesar salad one evening. We tried the buffet a few times because of our dining hall experiences, and it was worse off that the main dining. I cannot recommend eating the buffet unless it's for the breakfast which was actually good. We basically survived for 5 days by eating Guy's Burger shack ( Delicious by the way ), and the pizza shack. I know it's sad, but actually enjoyed the room service sandwiches more than the main dinning. We will move into the entertainment portion, and i only have a few words on it. The shows we watched were enjoyable, fun, and well entertaining, so I can't knock them on that. I think the entertainment is what saved the trip overall. The services by the employees were top notch as expected, and our stateroom was always taken care of by our room steward Putrauwn. He provided excellent service, and knew our names every time we met in the hall. Ports and Shore excursions. Whew, were to start.. Cozumel, beautiful water, nice people, and very enjoyable. We went on the Passion Isles excursion, but I cannot recommend this experience for the price point. There is boat ride to the isle, and that will use up 45 minutes of your time if your lucky, then a couple meetings later, a hour and a half has gone my of your time, and your finally able to go get a place on the beach. This is an all inclusive excursion, well somewhat.. The free drinks are out of coolers that are just awful, if you want any frozen drink, it's 8 bucks a pop, want some goggles for a little snorkeling in the small swimming are, 10 bucks. Oh, don't forget about the 4 photo ops you must make before you get your seats, they come round for 12 bucks a photo. Then you get the massage ladies that will what feels like hound you , us 7 times, for a 30 minute massage for 50 bucks. I cannot say to eat the buffet food, birds everywhere and flies. We saw a bird dive right into one of the buffet trays, and take food, and nothing was done. The food was also not very good for what we tried. There is a nice little shopping area the locals have setup on the isle for some souvenirs, but if you get close, they come at you like street vendors. So, we made it through a couple hours of beach time, and now we have to make the 45 minute ride back to the port area. Yes, that is deducted from your 5 hours total time for the excursion. Lets move on, to Progresso!! Progresso, very nice people, and you can get your start right off the bat. We did another excursion, The all inclusive beach, and it's all inclusive... There is a 30 minute bus ride to the location, which is deducted from total time but hey the pier is 6 miles long as well, so at least no walking. You get to the beach house, with 2 pools, 2 bars, lots of space and fantastic food. You do not need to walk to any bar, the workers take such good care of you, and oh yeah, all your frozen drinks are free as well.I forgot to mention, it's a FULL OPEN BAR, not just some lousy whiskey or no name drinks... You can go here without a single dime in your pocket, cause you don't need it, unless you want to tip or get a massage, 30 bucks 30 minutes, which we were never asked to get. I will definitely go back to this location. I really wish I could rate this higher, but due to the extra cost of everything, and the Poor, Poor food quality, and the state of the staterooms, I just can't. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We chose this cruise for the itinerary. Was absolutely blown away with our experience. Our exceptional Egyptologist guide Hazem Khalaf solidifies our experience . From the moment we arrived in Cairo we were well taken care of! The ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the itinerary. Was absolutely blown away with our experience. Our exceptional Egyptologist guide Hazem Khalaf solidifies our experience . From the moment we arrived in Cairo we were well taken care of! The Uniworld staff took very good care of us. The Tosca staff whether it was attentive details to our stateroom or assistance from the front desk. Dining experience from the helm of Chef Hamdy - to Restaurant Manager - Ehab Abdelsamd , to oversee perfection. Well done! Entertainment was unique and everyone joined in the fun:) We loved it! Special thanks and shout out to Mohamed and Sayed for the exceptional relaxing Spa treatments Nothing better than a good massage after a long day touring, including a lot of walking. To Mahmoud (Shopping experience) your pleasant personality and professional knowledge made our jewelry shopping a breeze . Love my purchases! River Tosca is a great ship . Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Very comfortable well run ship with an excellent crew. All but four of the cabins on the Ra are suites, with a separate living room and bedroom, and a balcony. The décor is clean Scandinavian, similar to the European long ships. Dining is ... Read More
Very comfortable well run ship with an excellent crew. All but four of the cabins on the Ra are suites, with a separate living room and bedroom, and a balcony. The décor is clean Scandinavian, similar to the European long ships. Dining is at set hours. There is a good variety of foods, including Viking standards (salmon, steak, burger) and middle eastern foods. The fresh made pita bread and hummus was especially delicious. Meals are usually a combination of buffet and menu. There is no room service. There was a pianist/DJ playing pleasant lounge music each evening. There also were special performances by local entertainers. The Ra has a small swimming pool and jacuzzi. The temperature was over 100 F each day of our cruise, so not much traffic in the jacuzzi. The crew of this ship was excellent. Our room steward was most efficient. The bartenders and dining room crew were fun and engaged. A special note about the two tour directors, Ahmed and Ihan. Incredibly knowledgable and outgoing. They made this cruise so much richer. I don't think there is any place in the world that can out shine Egypt for shore excursions. The Great Pyramids and Sphinx of Giza, Valley of Kings and Queens, Temples at Karnak, Luxor, Dendara, Kom Ombo - every one was more than we expected. Notes: Our suite had two very nice TVs, but no programming except soccer. Not even BBC. Children are not allowed on this cruise. The shore excursions require more physical exertion than you might expect if you have been on other river cruises. Sadly, many of our fellow cruisers spent most of the cruise on the ship because they couldn't manage the long walks with steps and very uneven footing. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We sailed on the Silversea Silver Shadow from Dubai to Athens in April of this year - our third Silversea cruise . We had loved our previous Cruises on the Shadow and the Silver Spirit and particularly liked the cabin comfort and the ... Read More
We sailed on the Silversea Silver Shadow from Dubai to Athens in April of this year - our third Silversea cruise . We had loved our previous Cruises on the Shadow and the Silver Spirit and particularly liked the cabin comfort and the attentive service where nothing was too much trouble. This cruise was so different. 1. Cabin Comfort. Yes the Shadow is now a bit shabby and very much in need of the up and coming refurbishment but this was not the problem. From previous cruises we knew, the beds were hard. My back does not cope with hard beds so as usual at the time of (early) booking I had requested one of the egg-crate mattress toppers plus pillows from the list given. We had previously never had any problem with these requests. When we boarded this time it was ‘sorry there are only 7 mattress toppers on the ship and they are all taken.’ Huge hard pillows on our beds. Further pillows brought in - some the same, others just slabs of very firm. Pillow menu mentioned but profuse staff apologies and ‘Sorry but this is all we have’ Pillow menu not available. Previously always enjoyed and been comfortable sitting on the balcony. New Balcony chairs very high and deep - my feet could not reach the ground and the wire edge dug into the back of my legs. Staff tried hard but nothing more comfortable available than lots of padding with pillows. My back and neck suffered badly from the hard bed, the hard pillows and not being able to sit comfortably on the balcony - I could not believe I had paid so much money to endure such discomfort. 2. Cabin Air conditioning control - poor to non existent. When we arrived in our cabin at 2pm it was sweltering - the air con wasnt working. Fixed late evening by the engineer taking down part of our cabin ceiling. Control still iffy and a few days later - cabin freezing cold -again fixed late evening. Show lounge and parts of the main restaurant often freezing - apparently problems with the themostat. 3. Staff service. Nothing like our previous attentive experience. Our poor butler was rushed off his feet between two decks. Apparently there was a staff shortage and it would often take him over an hour to respond to a call - if at all. When sitting on the upper decks, there were rarely any staff around. If we wanted seat cushions or a coffee it was a case of walking down to the pool deck, and either carrying items up two decks ourselves or waiting till someone was available - by which time the coffee was cold. 4. On the positive side the food in the restaurants was as good as ever, the staff themselves as welcoming and as lovely as ever, embarkation excellent and the excursions we went on mainly ok other than the very hot, small, basic souk on a wasteland area in Oman. All our concerns might be small issues in isolation but taken overall this was not the luxury cruise experience we had previously had with Silversea. Maybe we were just unfortunate on this particular cruise. Because of our previous good experiences we already booked another three week cruise before we went on this one and have since thought long and hard about whether to continue with the booking. After apologies and reassurances from the UK Guest relations manager ie that the Silver Shadow is being refurbished and that all will be fine re our requests etc. we have reluctantly decided to go ahead. I only hope he is right. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
Heard about the cruise specials offered from work colleagues . Had never been on a cruise before and thought this trip would be a good idea. Kids still on nappies can be a problem as such is not catered for. Short cruises tend to be a ... Read More
Heard about the cruise specials offered from work colleagues . Had never been on a cruise before and thought this trip would be a good idea. Kids still on nappies can be a problem as such is not catered for. Short cruises tend to be a problem as some of the facilities such as the kids day care and activities are only discovered midway through the cruise. Perhaps it would be better if a special invite or mandatory checklist could be given to folks with kids before boarding so they can make the most of this facility. The process to embark seemed a nightmare especially for people with kids and going through customs. First day boarding, was late due to the ship docking late(weather), however once boarded everyone is directed to one dining hall for lunch with queues of people,which I thought could have been better managed if the other dining halls were functional at the time however considering the late docking perhaps only this hall could be made available considering the short time. There were four jacuzzi's on board which are hogged by a select few. Rather have a time period for use of facilities so more people can enjoy the facilities ( better policing) Facilities such as the steam room also come with an extra charge. Inability to accommodate requests at the buffet area -especially disappointing for those who don't like their eggs sunny side up or half raw or those who refrain from eating pork/beef. Pros The abundance in entertainment ; facilities and shopping was well Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
One reason I choose to Cruise was to have fun and try out new experiences, how is it like to be in a titanic a 5 star moving hotel. The first time you enter the ship the ship smells 5 star and looks 5 star all the way, the decorations ... Read More
One reason I choose to Cruise was to have fun and try out new experiences, how is it like to be in a titanic a 5 star moving hotel. The first time you enter the ship the ship smells 5 star and looks 5 star all the way, the decorations inside are amazing you even forget That you are inside a ship. The embarkation que is horrible, you can't wait for a while before entering the ship, and didn't like the fact that they only open few service desk during embarkation. The stuff members are super great and friendly especially the man responsible for our deck 8, even when most of them didn't know how to communicate in English but they tried. MSC is one hygienic cruise hotel I ever seen, every corner you turn there is sanitation thats what I loved. The food is super Healthy and they don't compromise on taste, everything I ate I could taste that it's quality food. The dinning areas I loved them because you get the opportunity to dress up and be fine and finned, only problem is you have to buy soft drinks all the time, I don't mind them selling alcohols wish they could have gave us maybe complimentary soft drink for every fine dinning meal or 5 drinks per Cruz then the rest you purchase. I loved Eric the voice from above the program director all his shows were fun and entertaining. The parties organized by stuff were super great problem they only last for an hour. Deck 13 buffet area was home to most cruises and would like to give blow to the stuff there at deck 13 because they are forever working, especially the pizza guy 24 hours pizza. Our cabin was in front so every wave the ship cut through we felt it, and you couldnt stand straight which resulted in sea sickness, so would advice you to book balcony center cabin. The excursions on the island were expensive hence did not do them. I hated the fact that we did not go to Pomene Island and they could not take us to a different island like Maputo instead of Portuguese Island which had nothing to see the second day and the waters were unclean to swim at them. Pomene has been giving them a problem why don't they start looking for an alternative to island or take it out on your markets because when I booked I saw two island and wanted to visit two not one island. The disembarking program failed them a bit, stuff was not properly assigned to guide people were they should go,whuch made things to go slower. The photo package is expensive and it would be nice if the price could go down or be included as our take home package because we got nothing as complementary everything you have to buy. Despite all the negatives would still go and advice people to go is an experience you don't want to miss. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
This was my second time on MSC cruise. This time the embarkation was a disaster. But this could have been caused by the bad weather. It took more than 2 hours to board. My daughter was restless and tired. The ship sailed late and was ... Read More
This was my second time on MSC cruise. This time the embarkation was a disaster. But this could have been caused by the bad weather. It took more than 2 hours to board. My daughter was restless and tired. The ship sailed late and was driven very fast, I think this was to catch up the lost time, this unfortunately made some of us very sick. Which wasn't great at all. The food/buffet was much better than Sinfonia. Musica was much cleaner and beautiful. The service was great. The cabins were much bigger which was a bonus. The down site was there was a sewage stench. Maybe they had a drainage problem. But you could only smell it outside on the deck not inside. The kiddies club did a great job entertaining the kids & keeping them safe. My daughter had a great time, she was sad to go. Overall we had a great time and yes I will do this again in the near future. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
It was our first cruise experience and we enjoyed it through out. We did not have enough time to even look all parts of the ship. Its huge. They have lots of entertainments to keep us busy. Rooms are very neat and compact, cleaning ... Read More
It was our first cruise experience and we enjoyed it through out. We did not have enough time to even look all parts of the ship. Its huge. They have lots of entertainments to keep us busy. Rooms are very neat and compact, cleaning service is 100% perfect. Issues are resolved soon. Only suggestion is to have some difference in break fast, every day it was same menu repeated. We did easy on board, highly recommended, you dont have to wait for long. I would even prefer easy off boarding during disembarkation. Go earlier for breakfast, otherwise it is going to be crowded. We did not have chances to enjoy the lunch, we were busy with various other activities. You will have other food always like pizza, bread, salads etc. Food is not only provided at buffet area, there are other restaurants supply the same food during breakfast and lunch. Dining alone food menu is different between restaurant and buffet area. For fine dining, they say strict, but its actually not that strict, I have seen people dining in shorts. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
We chose this cruise because of the destinations and the price was reasonable. We cannot express in enough terms how disappointed we were with this ship. We purchased an Aurea pkg. which included: priority boarding (that did not ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the destinations and the price was reasonable. We cannot express in enough terms how disappointed we were with this ship. We purchased an Aurea pkg. which included: priority boarding (that did not happen, we were kept waiting on the docks in the sun for nearly 25 mins. Pkg. also included a 'solarium area' . This area was no different to any other area except that it was on a different deck and had no shade what so ever, uninviting we never used it. There is a policy that towels are not to be left for over 30 mins. on deck chairs, what a joke. Staff were afraid to say anything because of reprisal from the passengers. Pkg. also included sauna, steam room and gym. The sauna and steam rooms were often very cool or inoperable. Juices offered in the buffet area were like cordial, the food often cold and seating hard to find as people would sit around talking for ages after they had eaten. The other option was the dining room where it was difficult to get any ones attention to get served, it was chaos. It was quite obvious that the staff were all new and did not know what to do. Staff were observed coughing and sneezing into their hands then carrying on working. No wonder that there were many people with the flu on board. The quality of food in the evening dining was cafeteria style. Never again. The dining room staff in the evening were excellent as was the cabin steward. All this has been reported to the travel agent who reported to MSC line with one reply having an excuse for everything. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
The cruise was over populated with passengers. No dining facilities available at breakfast & lunch. By the time you waited for a seat the buffet was closed.At excursions we were treated as if we were in a government facility where we ... Read More
The cruise was over populated with passengers. No dining facilities available at breakfast & lunch. By the time you waited for a seat the buffet was closed.At excursions we were treated as if we were in a government facility where we need to stand in long lines. The braai on the Island did not have any proper meat, as per braai. I've been on four cruise thus far and this was the worst. No body was asked to put on life jackets from the ship to the island. South African staff working on the ship were quiet rude. The were hardly any crew members available for assistance. No real live entertainment on Deck as they usually do. " The Spice of the cruise has died off" I'm very disappointed as I always enjoyed and anticipated the cruise yearly. I would appreciate it if I heard some feedback from you soon. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
My family and I we had an amazing time the kids loved it and they were busy through out. We love the cruise. However the price on some items was expensive e.g studio photos. In general we enjoyed the cruise. The cabin was clean and the ... Read More
My family and I we had an amazing time the kids loved it and they were busy through out. We love the cruise. However the price on some items was expensive e.g studio photos. In general we enjoyed the cruise. The cabin was clean and the house keeping was on point. The public area pool, bars, kids area and clubs and so on were well managed and the the service was excellent. Entertainment inboard was good however thank you to the intertainment team. And the performers. Food was good and all the restaurants well well managed and the service and house keeping was on point. I understand that the Ship own by the international company. I think it would do the comp company better if you could be mindful of the price when doing SA tours especially drinks. Over all I was happy and I will surely do it again with MSC THANK YOU. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
We chose this cruise because it left from Durban, South Africa which allowed us to tick off a stay at Kruger National Park as well as a visit to Petra in Jordan. The cruise embarkation in Durban would have to have been the longest, most ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it left from Durban, South Africa which allowed us to tick off a stay at Kruger National Park as well as a visit to Petra in Jordan. The cruise embarkation in Durban would have to have been the longest, most shambolic and most disorganised we have EVER experienced. The staff, apparently (or so we were told) were new. All we can say is that they hadn't been trained properly (if at all) or they were just inept. They were unfriendly, even to the point of being surly, they had NO idea what they were doing and didn't, really, even seem to care. The LIFE BOAT drill was a joke apart from showing the passengers how to put on their life vests the rest was a garbled, incomprehensible mess, delivered over the loudspeakers (and that's an overstatement, you could hardly hear them) At dinner the waiters were inefficient and had no idea how to serve. Bread was offered from a basket, and bad luck if you were the last served, you got whatever was left. White wine was just left on the table - you had to ask for an ice bucket. Water - you had to buy a bottle or go without, tea or coffee - again you had to buy it or go without. The food was poorly presented and poorly cooked - the choice was limited. The Maitre D was a rude and arrogant man who stood around doing nothing. Tender, at, mercifully the one port, was horrendous - the ship docked at 8.00am, we got off at 12.30pm. Laundry - in by 10.00am, promised for a return by 5.00pm the next day - more likely by 5.00pm 4 days later (and then, only after repeated complaints, to out cabin steward) The lecturers, consisted of just TWO people - a charming lady who talked about the various ports and a gentleman who talked about boats, ships etc. - he was very interesting but he had all the delivery skills of a wet lettuce. The ENTERTAINMENT in the theatre was good - although a lack of LIVE music or stage sets was rather disappointing as was the brevity around 30 minutes. The Cruise Director insisted on introducing each show in about 5 languages - she droned on and on and on The Captain - was a ghost, saw him once. The ship in general, was reasonable, although the pools were rather limited and there was no poolside dining options as with other ships. An oddity was that on the quite wide promenade deck - NOT one chair was to be seen, not one. The one good thing was their alcohol prices - the cheapest we've ever experienced. OMG - for me to EVER travel on MSC again - they'd have to be dirt cheap or be taken over by PRINCESS CRUISES. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
We are frequent MSC cruisers This was our 10th MSC cruise And was the worst Bar service was short staffed and very hard to get a drink We waited to long Guest service was rude and non helping Just the general overall ... Read More
We are frequent MSC cruisers This was our 10th MSC cruise And was the worst Bar service was short staffed and very hard to get a drink We waited to long Guest service was rude and non helping Just the general overall service was terrible Could not get off at Pamome island and has always been like that for the past 10 cruisers Only the northern parts Have never seen or been to Barro lodge Bazzaruto and now pamome Weather was bad do we didn’t get off the boat to Portuguese island but yet they still charged us for or luxury beach loungers When I complained I was told tough luck There has always been entertainment on the deck, but on this cruise there was not such entertainment In the past they kept the people pumped up and dancing but nothing excursion desk never open Staff looked like that they had no interest of being on the boat Read Less
Sail Date April 2019

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