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5 Lindblad Expeditions National Geographic Explorer Group and Theme Cruise Reviews

We picked the NatGeo Explorer/Lindblad cruise to go to Antarctica because we figured we would get more than just a tour of Antarctica and it truly went above and beyond our expectations! The price tag was more than worth it and we ... Read More
We picked the NatGeo Explorer/Lindblad cruise to go to Antarctica because we figured we would get more than just a tour of Antarctica and it truly went above and beyond our expectations! The price tag was more than worth it and we couldn't recommend this trip more - our only regret was not going for a room with a full window instead of a porthole. Our expedition leader (Lucho) did an amazing job planning the whole trip and we were lucky enough to cross the Antarctic Circle! When we weren't out on Zodiacs, hiking, kayaking, or polar plunging the naturalists (Doug, Andy, Javier, Eric) and guest speaker (Ted Scampos) kept us busy with interesting lectures about the Antarctic animals, climate change, glaciology, and their own work/research. We also got great photography tips from a NatGeo photography (Andy Coleman) and Lindblad photo instructor (Nathan). The service and food on the ship was enough to make us want to travel with Lindblad again. The entire ship crew (Randy, Gabriel, Rosalie, Renato, and everyone) was incredibly friendly and accomodating. The whole operation was very smooth and even the Drake's Passage was surprisingly calm on the way back. The captain and crew were experts at navigating through the sea ice, getting us close to the animals, and answering all our questions about the ship (there is an open bridge policy that we all really took advantage of). The only bad experience during our whole time on the National Geographic Explorer was when we crossed the Drake's Passage on the way to Antarctica and our seasickness medication wore off. Luckily the ship's doctor had some better medication available onboard! Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
No doubt about it , this is a trip of a life time . The itinerary allows one to have a very in-depth exploration of Iceland----- its history , culture , wild-life and scenery . And the crew and the scientific resource persons on board ... Read More
No doubt about it , this is a trip of a life time . The itinerary allows one to have a very in-depth exploration of Iceland----- its history , culture , wild-life and scenery . And the crew and the scientific resource persons on board cannot be better. However , because of the rough open sea around Iceland and the fact that the ship often had to sail in rough water during dinner , I have to miss 4 dinners out of the 9 evenings. And I am not the only one--- half of the 8 people in my group vomited at least once or had to take motion-sickness medication at some stage. The ship even had to put up ropes in the corridor to allow people to hang on to as they walk to dinner/lunch. So ,if you are prone to sea-sickness , this is not a ship for you . Another thing that I never realize , nor was I able to obtain any information prior to booking is that the people in the lower cabins at the back ( stern) of the boat will suffer from terrible engine noise . We were in the 300 level ( one deck below the reception) , and the noise in our cabin was so terrible that I had to raise my voice just talking to my wife whenever she was more than 10 feet away. And it was simple not possible to turn on any quite music in the cabin. Mercifully , the noise was constant and after awhile , one sort of got used to it and every night, sleep would eventually come after a initial irritating phase. On the other hand , my friends who were at the same level but had cabins near the front( bow) of the boat , experienced very minimal engine noise throughout the day . If someone had reviewed that before , I would have chosen my cabin more wisely . I just could not understand why no one has even mention that in any past review. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
For the money, my recent cruise to Greenland and Canadian Arctic was a bit of a let down. First, we were misdirected at the Reykjavík airport and the bus actually left without us! And did the same to at least one other person. The ground ... Read More
For the money, my recent cruise to Greenland and Canadian Arctic was a bit of a let down. First, we were misdirected at the Reykjavík airport and the bus actually left without us! And did the same to at least one other person. The ground tours were ok but very rushed, and they paraded us around Iceland for 6 hours or so after arriving at 6am from a 5-hour flight. The parting lunch was abysmal, and the restaurant was so crowded the food buffet was mostly inaccessible. I finally found a seat and a tour rep asked me to move so a couple could sit together! Then no one had any idea how the luggage would be retrieved by us at the airport going to Greenland, but clearly told us it was solely our own responsibility. Wow. The cruise itself was great, but again, there was a complete lack of organization by the expedition crew. And most, but not all, expedition crew were really very unfriendly and downright arrogant. The leader even rushed me along into the zodiac leaving an island, and I was one of the fast ones. Another one mocked me for not getting out of the way quick enough so he could photograph a site without people in it. Also, why does the staff get to sit in the first-class seats to and from Greenland/Iceland? And on the ship, while everyone occupied the bow area to photograph interesting animals, the best spots were taken by the Nat Geo photographers. They are PAID to be there, while the guests paid for the experience. Surely we should have access to the very front first. Back in Iceland, the same disorganization continued. Where are the bags?, no one knows, come down at 9am to ID your bag, then the story changes. The very high price is supposed to, in part, avoid these types of things. But apparently not. The ship itself was very clean and pleasant. Her crew was excellent. The food was not bad, but gets repetitive after a while. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
I was referred to this cruise/expedition by our dentist! As it turned out, he was exactly right! My daughter had the most enjoyable experience of our lives! When we arrived in Ushuaia, we were taken to a catamaran where we were treated ... Read More
I was referred to this cruise/expedition by our dentist! As it turned out, he was exactly right! My daughter had the most enjoyable experience of our lives! When we arrived in Ushuaia, we were taken to a catamaran where we were treated to a wonderful lunch and saw a little part of scenery Ushuaia. When we arrived at the port which we were to embark, we were greeted by a friendly, smiling crew member who welcomed us aboard the ship. Once on the ship, we were asked if we wanted to register at the time we boarded or if we would like to be taken to our cabin. We chose to be taken to our cabin and, without hesitation, they took us. Once we reached the cabin, they showed us all about the cabin to make our stay more comfortable. The cabin was cozy and comfortable and well appointed. The ship was beautifully appointed and it was rather easy to find our way around once we settled in. After we settled into the cabin, we went to register ourselves into the ship. It was quick and easy with not much waiting. The dining room was equally beautiful and our dining requests were met every step of the way! The staff was friendly, polite and efficient and they tended to our every need! The quality of the food served was top notch and there was no skipping on service! All of the dining room staff went out of their way to meet our needs from our first meal to our last! Each day, our schedule was full of activities and interesting seminars on Antarctica and other topics of interest! There was never a time in the day when there was nothing to do, unless you chose to do nothing but relax or read. It was always interesting and NEVER boring! What we found to be interesting is that this cruise/expedition was made up of mature passengers, but also of young adults who enjoyed the interaction by all! I believe that all of us learned something from everyone! Aside from going on shore and seeing glaciers up close in addition to the wildlife, it was wonderful to be able to go anywhere on the ship including the bridge where we were welcomed with open arms. Not only did the crew allow us to enter the bridge at anytime, they were willing to explain to us what we were seeing and what we could expect as we were traveling along! They pointed out interesting sites and went into detail about what we saw in order to help us understand all that we were seeing! They explained all about what they were doing, as well, which made the trip even more interesting. The naturist were informative and interesting! Needless to say, the service that was provided was the best that I have ever seen. Every detail was thought of and nothing was ever left out! I could not have asked for more as it went beyond my expectations! If I had the chance to go again, and I hope I do, I would do it again in a heartbeat! Furthermore, I would recommend this cruise/expedition to anyone at anytime! The money spent to book this trip was more than worth it! Thank you to the crew, Linblad and National Geographic for the trip of a lifetime! Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
We wanted to make our 7th continent and this worked well. The 1 star is off for the excursions in Bueno Aires and Ushuaia could have been improved with voice boxes (a la Viking) and more information so we could hear the guide instead of ... Read More
We wanted to make our 7th continent and this worked well. The 1 star is off for the excursions in Bueno Aires and Ushuaia could have been improved with voice boxes (a la Viking) and more information so we could hear the guide instead of her having to shout. The food on the boat was nothing to write home about, but it was adequate. The food is not why you take this cruise. The catamaran cruise on the lake in Ushuaia would have been improved with commentary about the Tierra del Fuego National park. There was a flash strike by LAN on our day of departure and everyone going home missed their international flight, since we didn't get to EZE until 1 am. Lindblad and the cruise director did an excellent job getting us back in the Sofitel for a night and getting our replacement flights home, plus covering expenses quickly. They must have a rapid response team or something because their response to a crisis was excellent. The parkas that come with the cruise are really very nice. It also comes with an inner lining that is outstanding. On many of the Antarctica excursions on the ice several people would wear just the inner lining. Depending on the weather, the same was true for when the ship was cruising the ice watching for whales, seals, and penguins. I would suggest at the very least, renting their boots, so you dont have to pack your own. They were quite good. We brought our own ski pants, but many others rented. There are hiking sticks available for free (beat up sticks) if you want them, so we didnt need to rent those. This is a very casual cruise so no need to dress up. Some crew were in the lounge during the day in shorts and a T shirt and this did not offend us. Plan on a poor internet experience. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
National Geographic Explorer Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.7
Dining 4.0 4.4
Entertainment 3.0 4.3
Public Rooms 4.0 4.7
Fitness Recreation 3.0 4.2
Family 4.0 4.2
Shore Excursion 5.0 4.6
Enrichment 5.0 4.6
Service 4.0 4.9
Value For Money 4.0 4.3
Rates 5.0 N/A

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