19 Oceania Nautica Senior Cruise Reviews

For those interested in a comparison, let's look at the differences between Oceania and Princess. We were on the 18-day Dublin-Copenhagen segment. This was our first cruise with Oceania. We are elite with Princess. We chose this ... Read More
For those interested in a comparison, let's look at the differences between Oceania and Princess. We were on the 18-day Dublin-Copenhagen segment. This was our first cruise with Oceania. We are elite with Princess. We chose this cruise because of the itinerary: Norway and northern Russian ports. Oceania has considerably less merchandising pressure. There is no crew of photographers. The crew seems under less pressure to sell extras. There are no "cruise ship art" events. Speciality coffees and sparkling water are available without extra charge. Speciality restaurants are available without extra charge. On the other hand, the cheapest bottle of wine on Oceania is about $10 a bottle more than on Princess. That generally put wine above what I was willing to pay. The ship felt less crowded and there was never a problem finding outdoor seating (although the Northern itinerary may have had something to do with that). 650 passengers instead of thousands does make for a different (and pleasant) experience. Oceania does live up to its reputation for good food. The dining room food was consistently a notch better than Princess. The buffet food was also very good. However, the buffet was typically more crowded than I'm used to on Princess. Our cabin (C1 ocean view) was equivalent to what we'd expect on Princess. Surprisingly, the cabin steward was good, but not as good as is typical on Princess. There were two ship lecturers. We only went to the lectures by one, but she was outstanding (https://cruisethroughhistory.com}. I liked the smaller venue for ship shows, although the noise level (at times 90db or more) was louder than I'd like. Passenger demographics: Oceania is a bit older and fellow passengers are on average wealthier. They also have a tendency to provide lots of details on their previous exotic Oceania cruises. At first that was useful, since we've not been on Oceania before, but enough was enough.... Shore excursions are overpriced. We generally don't book ship excursions, but we took their tours to make life easier for the three Russian ports, and we booked the bird safari at North Cape (a mistake). In Lerwick we hired a cab for the day. I tried to rent a car, but waited too long. I'd recommend planning ahead and getting a car. Even if you feel a bit uncomfortable driving in the UK, traffic on Shetland Island is thin. We walked around Bergen, a lovely port. Instead of the Oceania excursion to Mt. Floyen, we booked in advance on-line (https://www.floyen.no/en). Efficient and lots less money. In Kristiansund, there is a company that takes off from the cruise dock and heads up the local fjord for a lot less than Oceania. The Russian tours were fine, although private packages would have saved money. North Cape was a good tour — but we could have done it for less than half the Oceania price on our own. My advice is to rent a car (there is a company at the pier that will rent a car for 1500 NOK). That would allow both the bird safari and a drive up to North Cape, and save a whole lot of money. Thee is also a public bus, although an expensive one, from the pier to North Cape. The tourist office at the pier has the details. Although the cruise to Flam is spectacular, I can't say I'd recommend the railroad trip — but if you do take it, don't book with Oceania. You can either book on-line in advance or buy a ticket once you get there. Flam itself is a town of about 500 that absorbs thousands of cruise ship passengers, and is entirely uninteresting on its own. Cabs in Copenhagen (Uber withdrew from the city) are readily available at the cruise terminal and will set you back less than the Oceania transfer. In sum, Oceania is about twice the price (or more). If I had a choice between them I'd take Princess assuming identical itineraries. However, Oceania's smaller ships bring one to places Princess doesn't. I wouldn't hesitate to book Oceania again — but only if the itinerary was one that Princess could not match. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
The crew were for the most part pleasant and accommodating. Food was above average and the pastry chef was particularly good. Themed dinners were okay but too much Thai. Food not always available but 24 room service was pretty good. The ... Read More
The crew were for the most part pleasant and accommodating. Food was above average and the pastry chef was particularly good. Themed dinners were okay but too much Thai. Food not always available but 24 room service was pretty good. The tours were conducted by good English speaking instructors (Dalian to Lushun prison and Beijing to Forbidden City and Tiananmen Square). Internet was spotty. Room 6004 was a good size, beds comfortable with lovely sheets but the whole ship needs renovation. Do not reserve this cabin if you have any issue with motion sickness. It is in the forward part of the ship and it was awful in rough seas. It was also very noisy when the entertainment in the lounge was going on. Overall a good trip. The port agent in Kobe did a good job helping us to get back to the ship on time on one precarious occasion. The age range though really is 65-80. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Itinerary was our priority and I fully understand missing Mombasa but from then on it went downhill. Due to currents etc.???, we battled to make ports on time, resulting in less and less time in port. There was no plan B with Nautica, ... Read More
Itinerary was our priority and I fully understand missing Mombasa but from then on it went downhill. Due to currents etc.???, we battled to make ports on time, resulting in less and less time in port. There was no plan B with Nautica, the currents are always there and the weather was not that bad. The itinerary was cut so fine. There was no give in the itinerary, at all, for conditions that are always going to be there. It felt like the cruise was cut short by one day in the initial planning. Oceania this trip, needs to have full days in port for the benefit of the guests. It felt at times that there was a rush and that we were shortchanged The ships entertainment troupe were fantastic, but the guest artists were tired and repetitive, with an occasional singer thrown in. They were not quality. Dining - The Grand Dining Room was a grand disappointment, cold food cold plates and tasteless food, many returned meals with no improvement. It felt like a cafeteria not Grand in anyway, except for the waitering staff, who make up for the quality of food. Tocannas and Polo shamed the GDR with their hot and flavoursome food Service - across the dining spectrum, the wait staff, were either brilliant and attentive or not. On observation, at many a meal, the supervisors stood aloof and were not attentive to what was not happening, leaving it to the good wait staff to try and rectify the poor service. Training was not as good as seen previous, an example, for 20 days we asked for spoons to be in “Waves” for breakfast and eventually it happened for the final 8-10 days. It seems if a guest suggests something you get treated as though you do not know what you are talking about, or know better than supervisor you spoke to. Finally, I would also like to make comment on the complaint process. It seems that complaints are always referred back to head office. A fellow traveler had an issue and wanted to see someone high In management, firstly to talk, before putting it in writing but was told that reception had to decide whether to forward the complaint. This is not a process, but a poor vetting system, where you get the feeling that we will wear you down, and then hope you will give up Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
We took an Athens-Rome Mediterranean cruise on Marina in 2017. Loved the ship and the experience. We purchased this cruise on board. Nautica is much smaller than Marina but is dated and lacks the feeling of space and luxury of Marina. ... Read More
We took an Athens-Rome Mediterranean cruise on Marina in 2017. Loved the ship and the experience. We purchased this cruise on board. Nautica is much smaller than Marina but is dated and lacks the feeling of space and luxury of Marina. Embarkation at Stockholm was quick but there was no welcome cocktail. Our room (B2) on deck 6 was adequate. The bathroom was tiny and had only a shower protected by a cheap shower curtain (no bathtub as on Marina). Storage space was adequate. Our room was cleaned spotlessly every day. One person commented that a verandah is unnecessary on cruises to northern climates and during cooler seasons, and I agree, even though we had spectacular weather (Europe had its warmest weather on record). Our stateroom was near the rear elevator (closer to the restaurants) which was convenient. Nautica has only two specialty restaurants, so we were only allowed two such meals on a 12-day cruise (no surcharge). Oddly, each time we went, there were many empty tables. It should be noted that Nautica and the other three smaller (older) ships are being "reimagined" over the next year or two and the design looks attractive. Try to hold off until the ships are done. The interiors of Nautica are dated and frumpy. For example, on Marina there were real Picasso and Miro prints, and some delightful avant-garde works of art. On Nautica, the art looked like it came from a neighbourhood art show. Yes, this is a "first world" problem, but Oceania are among the most expensive cruises on the market. PA announcements were appropriate and brief and the cruise director was excellent on them. I was also impressed by the performers. The shows were appropriately scaled and tasteful, like a nightclub rather than Vegas. On Oceania, apart from a promotional package (cabin credit, 6 excursions/cabin, etc.) everything is extra. The wine lists are extensive and extremely expensive, starting generally at US$50 (one or two bottles) and shooting up from there. There is a 7-bottle wine package for US$350.00 and the choices were decent, but I did some research and found the majority of them cost in the range of US$10-20. Huge markup. Oceania permits bringing alcohol on board, as long as it is consumed in your cabin (there is a $25.00 corkage fee if you want to bring your bottle into a restaurant). Excursions are ridiculously expensive. Imagine 30 people paying US$300 each to board a bus for a day excursion. Typical. In St Petersburg, Russia, we went on one such excursion but were allowed only to get out of the bus at certain stops to take exterior pictures. The Hermitage, which we were looking forward to as a highlight, was too brief (actually only about 2.5 hours viewing) and of course it was massively overcrowded, which is not Oceania's fault. Tour guides were generally good, except in one case we signed up for a tour of modern Scandinavian architectural landmarks in Copenhagen but the tour was a disaster because the guide was subbed in at the last minute (with apologies) and had no time to prepare, so she showed us a few buildings near where she lived and in central Copenhagen then reverted to a tour of historic buildings because the time allotment was not used up. You would think these tours would all be pre-planned so anyone with some background could step in. We were also promised a tour of a "design factory" but were taken to a retail outlet instead which lasted about 10 minutes. Having said that, the food really is, with minor exception, the best of the cruise lines. One day the head chef made his rounds in the restaurant and I had a suggestion, which he implemented. The median age of the guests on oceania is probably about 70, and the food selections especially in the buffet area were appropriate. There were a few theme days, but most guests didn't seem to take advantage. Compared to Marina, Nautica's staff were a little too relaxed and familiar for my taste. Service can be personal but it should be deferential and non-intrusive. This is trivial, but one waiter asked me as a joke if I wanted ground pepper in my dessert, which was a bit of sarcasm over always having to offer ground pepper. We laughed but I had never experienced that on Marina. There is a merit/reward system for staff, and some of them seemed a little over-anxious about making an impression. My main complaint is with their marketing and sales. Oceania spends a lot of time trying to induce people to book on board, but the actual discounts are only about 5% for cruises that may be a year or more away. They also try to pressure you with the threat of "price increases" and are not flexible dealing with repeat customers. (Our travel agent enquired about how much an upcoming price increase would be, which was refused. That's not respectful of a customer who is looking at laying out $10-$20,000.00 per cabin and up.) Their online published prices are also misleading; when we enquired about a future cruise, they quoted the price for a stateroom two levels higher than the one we specified; when our travel agent enquired we were told it was for the "extra" package that was previously complementary. These cruises generally fill up and I don't see why they need to engage in high-pressure tactics. They tout their "loyalty" programme a great deal but benefits don't really accrue until you are over 10 cruises, and even then it might amount to free laundry. We each got a lapel pin worth about $5.00 and a free cocktail at a Captain's reception for our second cruise (22 cruise days total). The rest is window-dressing. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We chose this cruise for the itinerary plus our experience on a previous cruise on Riviera. A big plus was that Nautica, being a small ship, was able to dock close to several of the city centres rather than at the more distant ports. ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the itinerary plus our experience on a previous cruise on Riviera. A big plus was that Nautica, being a small ship, was able to dock close to several of the city centres rather than at the more distant ports. Sailing out of Hong Kong harbour from Ocean Terminal after dark was a an amazing sight and a cruise highlight. Several overnights in port made it possible to take two shore trips per port. As anticipated, the food was great in all dining venues, especially at the Polo Grill. We appreciated room service breakfast on days when we had an early start for shore excursions. We like open dining times, being able to dine whatever time we feel like, and enjoyed sharing tables sometimes. The wine prices were very high, but we made good use of happy hour pre dinner drinks. The enrichment lectures we went to (4) we very good. Attended only 2 evening shows, but both were very good given the small number of the entertainment crew. Embarkation didn’t go as expected. We arrived 15 mins after embarkation began but found everything at a standstill, with nowhere to sit while we waited for action, around 30 mins. Were told later that we were kept inside for warmth, as it was unusually cold outside. Once the line started moving all went well. Disembarkation was seamless. Service in all areas of the ship was excellent, and courtesy was shown by everyone from the Captain down. We didn’t do any ship’s excursions, partly because they were so expensive, and partly because we prefer small group excursions. We organised our own trips or joined some organised by others via Cruise Critic. A little disappointed with the lack of a Concierge lounge on this smaller ship. Otherwise this was a great cruise, and if we cruise again we are likely to choose Oceana. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
The itinerary from Dubai to Capetown along with an opportunity for the excursions to Taj Mal and a safari in Africa was unique, The food on this ship was of an exceptional, quality, service and restaurants, were without a match with any ... Read More
The itinerary from Dubai to Capetown along with an opportunity for the excursions to Taj Mal and a safari in Africa was unique, The food on this ship was of an exceptional, quality, service and restaurants, were without a match with any other cruise ships that we have sailed on and this is no exaggeration. Although, not a reflection on the ship’s crew or staff, there were excursion experiences that did not measure up to our expectation. We would suggest that the cruise line staff place more attention on the planning and quality of the excursions to ensure they reflect the passenger expectations of a luxury cruise. Overall experiences on this vacation cruise, including add on three day excursions before and after the actual 30 day cruise were with a few exceptions first class. While there are probably parts of this itinerary we would not repeat, certainly there are others we would very much like to visit again. Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
WE chose the Baltic cruise because we liked the itinerary and wanted to try Oceania Cruiseline. We like the smaller ships and this fit the need. The ship itself is well maintained and the common areas are nice. I am a blackjack player so ... Read More
WE chose the Baltic cruise because we liked the itinerary and wanted to try Oceania Cruiseline. We like the smaller ships and this fit the need. The ship itself is well maintained and the common areas are nice. I am a blackjack player so I did enjoy the casino on this ship. Our cabin was nice we were on the concierge Veranda which gave us 4 nights in the speciality restaurants, there was a bottle of champagne waiting in our room and we could access our room earlier than others. The food was exceptional in the Speciality restaurants however we were disappointed in the Dining Room menus and the buffets. They had some featured nights of different cultures, one being Indian Food which is definitely not one of my favorites. The service was very slow in the main dining rooms, you could easily spend 2 hours just getting through dinner. We have sailed on Azamara and Seabourn and this ship definitely did not measure up to them. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
Oceania is well-known as the upper premium class cruise line with excellent gourmet food. indeed, the appearance of the buffet restaurant could compete with fine dining serviced restaurants on other vessels. The food was really extremely ... Read More
Oceania is well-known as the upper premium class cruise line with excellent gourmet food. indeed, the appearance of the buffet restaurant could compete with fine dining serviced restaurants on other vessels. The food was really extremely "dangerous" with a high extra-weight-potential. You could tell just by looking at the ingedients: lemon sole, finest filet, mussels, prawns. The passenger mix was too mono-national for me. The majority US citizens, a few Aussies, very few europeans. Since I'm in my fifties I felt way too young for this kind of ship, I estimate the average age of passengers at 73+. The service was excellent, the cabin steward knew our complicated family name in a second and always addressed us by our name when we met her on the corridor. When you put down the cutlery in the buffet or serviced restaurant it took only seconds and the dish was taken away, just amazing! I liked the type of a smaller vessel a lot. Everything seemed to be so familiar, then I found out: have been sailing on Ocean Princess, one of the other Renaissance Class ships before! The interior was very classic, just like an old fashioned country style from England. We had booked a few shore excurisons for Saint Petersburg, Russia, to avoid buying this very expensive visa. All three tours were very interesting and the local tour guides were excellent, explained everything with great enthousiasm. Overall, a high class product with fantastic cuisine, very much recommended for the elderly passenger who prefers a quieter surrounding. Since Nautica carries only 680 passengers or so and 400 crew members it has also a superduper pax-crew-ratio. Finally: the smaller the vessel the more unique are the itineraries, Nautica and her sister ships go to places bigger ships have no access to. If you expect a quiet and relaxing classic cruise with excellent food, don't expect too much of entertainment and "WOW-features", then go for it! Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
This was a destination specific cruise. Lecturer Mike Boll was fabulous giving histories of the countries visited. All nationalities were onboard which was a great mix. Entertainment was average & the so called "pool deck ... Read More
This was a destination specific cruise. Lecturer Mike Boll was fabulous giving histories of the countries visited. All nationalities were onboard which was a great mix. Entertainment was average & the so called "pool deck party" was a real disappointment - lacked food, poor music selection & no ambience or time given in setup. NCL takeover of Oceania is evident...cost cutting....toiletries not replaced in concierge room & had to be requested, room not serviced appropriately upon embarkation & wine prices (+18% gratuity!) expensive, wait service thin. The Horizon room was empty usually by 9:30-10 pm! Shore excursions were overpriced as usual. Food was above average, particularly in the specialty restaurants. The whirlpool private area available to concierge & above staterooms lacked lounges & chairs for those wanting to visit, & were taken by the same people regularly, as were the lack, & hogging, of lounges on deck 5. Concierge rooms are not worth the extra money on the smaller Renaissance class ships. The cruise director was corporate in presentation & too formal, & lacked the necessary social interaction for all levels of clientele. The most appealing aspect of the cruise was that staff recognised returning passengers & were very friendly & obliging. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
Oceania always provide good services, food and entertainment. The only disappointments were the cancellation of Istanbul and Cairo within the lists of Port of Call. Those cities were the reasons for the initial booking of this cruise. ... Read More
Oceania always provide good services, food and entertainment. The only disappointments were the cancellation of Istanbul and Cairo within the lists of Port of Call. Those cities were the reasons for the initial booking of this cruise. Some travelers mentioned receiving shipboard credit after complaining to Oceania (which would need confirmation). If that was true and correct, Oceania should have done across the board for all passengers. During the passage of the Suez Canal/Red Sea, the ship was attacked by flies. The crew had to do extra duties every night to fumigate the Terrace Cafe and other public areas. Oceania is very concerned of the safety of the passengers especially when sailing through the potentially high-risk areas. The captain advised all blinds or curtains would need to be pulled together after dark to avoid the attractions of the privates and the open decks were closed for public access. Closing the deck after dark caused some inconvenience because some passengers such as myself would normally have their exercise walks after the big dinners. Read Less
Sail Date November 2016
Friends recommended oceania cruises because of the good food. The food was good, but compared to the other cruiselines where we booked balcony huts in Europe since 2010, this was by far the worst in size, also the bathroom was far too ... Read More
Friends recommended oceania cruises because of the good food. The food was good, but compared to the other cruiselines where we booked balcony huts in Europe since 2010, this was by far the worst in size, also the bathroom was far too small. The service was very good and the ship is very quiet compared to MSC, Norwegian, Costa. The food was good, but not exceptional. Dinner in the Polo restaurant was disappointing, The ship did embark in city centres, which was very convenient. The prices are ridiculous, especially prices of the wine at table and the prices of transfers. Book your own transfers! Because we did not like to be on a waiting list for dinner in the grand ding room, we went there around 9, when there was no waiting list. Therefore each night we saw only the last 10 minutes of the entertainment. The library is big, very quiet and 24/7 open. We will consider cruising again with oceania, but not with the old ships like the Nautica. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
As virgin ocean cruisers, but experienced river cruisers, we were not sure what to expect. We chose this particular cruise mainly because of the reputation of Oceania, the cruise had only one sea day, a relatively small number of ... Read More
As virgin ocean cruisers, but experienced river cruisers, we were not sure what to expect. We chose this particular cruise mainly because of the reputation of Oceania, the cruise had only one sea day, a relatively small number of passengers (684), many destinations that we had not visited and a competitive price. Getting on and off the ship was easy at all times of the cruise which was one of concerns about ocean cruising, although our luggage took a long time to appear even though we were one of the first to board. The ship itself was also pleasantly fitted out and with many activities to participate in, although the only ones that we took advantage of were the daily trivia (good fun), lectures (excellent) and the evening shows (average). We preferred the informality of the buffet meals in the Terrace Cafe to the formality of the speciality restaurants (Toscana & Polo Grill) and the Grand Dining Room. The food and service in all locations was good with the best choice at the Terrace Cafe. We took three of the four free excursions in St Petersburg due to the visa restrictions and took the other one in Visby. The remaining eight locations were all 'do-able' on our own, using complimentary coaches, local tourist reps on board, internet research, local transport and a willingness to walk a bit. The exception was Berlin where we had stayed on the way to joining the ship in Copenhagen. We also took a few extra days in Copenhagen before the cruise and Southampton at the end of the cruise. We would recommend both these locations. The size of the Nautica meant it could get close in to most cities so we were never left struggling in a remote commercial port. The highlights of the cruise were the approach and departure from Stockholm plus the (short) time St Petersburg. Transiting the Kiel Canal was also interesting for us as it had a bit of a river cruise feel about it. The negatives were : 1) the alcohol pricing policy with wine starting at US$47 per bottle off the wine list or US$27 corkage per bottle for BYO. 2) the price of optional excursions which were several times the price which we could purchase them on the internet. 3) the claim of free unlimited Internet access which is actually limited to one login per cabin at any time, limited by the number of users at any time, limited by quality of signal and limited by where you were on the ship. We think that Oceania should reconsider this pricing policy (the heart of their 'O-Life' sales pitch) as it distorts the true cost of a cruise if clients pay the price of the add-ons. Overall we enjoyed our first ocean cruise as it met most of our expectations. Would we take another Ocean cruise? - Yes provided it went to places we want to go with minimal sea days. Would we go with Oceania again? - Yes provided that the prices were competitive. Is River better than Ocean cruising? - We prefer the intimacy of the smaller boats but if you have certain places on your bucket list (eg Alaska, Norwegian Fjords) then Ocean cruising is the only way to go. Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
Chose this cruise for the interesting itinerary. We had been to Iceland and Faroes 3 years ago and enjoyed it so much we wanted to go back, also this cruise featured 2 stops in Greenland which we wanted to see. The last time we sailed on ... Read More
Chose this cruise for the interesting itinerary. We had been to Iceland and Faroes 3 years ago and enjoyed it so much we wanted to go back, also this cruise featured 2 stops in Greenland which we wanted to see. The last time we sailed on Oceania (Regatta & Insignia) was 2005 and 2007 respectively. We were interested to see how ship experience has change in these years and the (possible) effect of the influence of the new parent company NCL has on the cruise experience. It is important to say that we went on the cruise with a very bitter taste as we had booked in October 2015 and paid in full in February 2016 at a so called special offer only to find that in May 2016 Oceania had reduced our equivalent cabin category by a whopping 48%. It took me and my travel agent nearly a month to try and resolve this situation. Oceania UK were most unhelpful in doing anything to compensate us for this. Eventually, I wrote to Frank del Rio (CEO Oceania) and Jason Montague (President NCL) and they got the UK office, Bernard Carter MD, to offer us many extra packages which we had to take instead of getting any cash refund. Because they had so many issues regarding this type of pricing offer Oceania have introduced their price promise called BPG, best price guarantee. My advice is to check that they will honour the BPG when yo book or better still wait for the price to drop nearer to sailing date and get a "last minute deal". Despite the above our cruise overall was very good. Never rate anything or anyone excellent as they have nothing left to achieve. The downside of Nautica and the other R ships in the fleet is that the bathrooms are very small. Our outside view cabin was good although the decorations are showing signs of ageing. We were on Deck 4 which is very convenient for the main dining room and Nautica Lounge. Oceania lacks a lot of daytime activities that are offered on larger ships. The entertainment team of 4 have to organise the so called "sporting" activities and also perform their evening production shows. The only lecture was fairly interesting but seemed to think that passengers (his shipmates) were only going to visit the local pubs in every port of call. Oceania is noted for it's dining (food) experience and overall this was very good. The main criticism was the limited variety of vegetarian dishes on offer. They seem to give fancy names for every menu item. The service in the Grand Dining Room was slow on a number of occasions. The Polo Grill and Toscana were very nice. If you like your food hot, as we do, be sure to ask and remind your waiter as at most meals we had to send our soup and main course back as it was only cool in temperature. The entertainment was quite good but again very limited. The Cruise Director Julie James was excellent and apologised that because the cruise was oversold there was not the availability of cabins for more entertainers. The Wi-Fi internet on the ship was very,very,very poor. Luckily we had an unlimited package because if we had to pay for it we would have needed a mortgage at their prices. The shore excursions were well organised but very poor value for money, Again we had 5 shore excursions included in our extras package so if we would have paid for them they were an expensive rip off. My advice is to book your tours independently. All the ports were very good and apart from Dublin, where only one shuttle bus ran on the hour, we enjoyed the tendering and shuttle service/ Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
Before we left for our trip, we were notified at the last minute of a port change from Tianjin to Incheon, Korea. Thankfully, this did not affect our plans as we weren't flying home until Sunday, March 6th. After staying in Bangkok ... Read More
Before we left for our trip, we were notified at the last minute of a port change from Tianjin to Incheon, Korea. Thankfully, this did not affect our plans as we weren't flying home until Sunday, March 6th. After staying in Bangkok for a few days, we boarded the Nautica (Klong Tooey port) for our 3 week journey. The ship was nicely appointed but really small size -wise. My husband really was put off by the size (or lack of) of the bathrooms-way too small even for a small person. I found the ship to be kind of cozy. We are used to cruising on much larger ships. Our cabin was small but everything fit. We had to keep it neat and orderly in order to have any room to sit. We found the food to be pretty good after a few soso meals. It was nice not to dress formally for dinner and we really did enjoy the table sharing most evenings. It gave us a chance to meet some very interesting people. We were on the younger side (60's) of most of the passengers (70-80's). I was a bit disappointed that food wasn't available during certain hours other than room service. The specialty restaurants were very good though the lobster was overcooked most of the time we ordered it. The dining staff was very accommodating about bringing us a new dinner. The overall service all over the ship was pretty good. Our room steward/stewardess were excellent and very personable. I really didn't care about meeting the captain and his staff but they did NOT have a large presence on our cruise.The evening activities were mediocre at best-it really didn't matter to us. We were in bed by 9:30pm because we had early morning tours or watched movies in our room. Our tours were privately arranged through cruise critic-a better way to go. The ship tours were large groups, VERY expensive and not so great we were told. We did one evening tour in Hong Kong on a double decker bus wanting to see the light show and some of the sites of the city. It was horrible! The ship got many complaints about this and gave us half our money back in ship's credit 1 day before we had to get off. We gad to complain about it for several days before getting that refund. The fact that the staff on the ship had no authority to credit our account and had to email back to Miami for a supervisor to do so is ridiculous. What happened to great customer service/satisfaction? We had a bit of bad weather 2 different days creating havoc in our schedules-the port changed in Saigon because of high winds and we were changed to a port 1-1/2 hours away causing problems with our private tour start times. We were held a day outside Tianjin port due to dense fog really causing major problems for lots of passengers. Airline plans had to be rescheduled, hotels had to be gotten for all the new passengers who couldn't get aboard-a real snafu for Oceania. I must say, they were very accommodating in helping us call our hotels, tours etc., gave us free drinks, tried to make our extra night stay more pleasurable. All in all, it was a fabulous trip filled with different history and ways of life. We met interesting and nice people and had a trip of a lifetime. We got to see places we have only dreamed about seeing. We even booked another Oceania trip onboard-granted, it will be a bit shorter (12 days) and on a larger ship. Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
After reading some of the reviews on Cruise Critic we were a bit apprehensive about whether the high standards of our two previous Nautica cruises would be maintained, since the NCL acquisition. We need not have worried! The ship was ... Read More
After reading some of the reviews on Cruise Critic we were a bit apprehensive about whether the high standards of our two previous Nautica cruises would be maintained, since the NCL acquisition. We need not have worried! The ship was clean, crew were great, and the food was excellent, even though the menu did get a bit repetitive towards the end of the cruise. Our fellow passengers were a mix of folk from USA, Canada, NZealand, and Australia and though mainly retirees a few younger couples too. The library was well patronised, but whoever chooses the books, I think buys them by the yard...six copies of the same books! The entertainment staff Luke, Chris, Susannah and Savanah were talented young people with excellent voices, and they worked hard during the day too with various deck sports. The cruise director David was pleasant and ran General Knowledge Quizzes every day as well as running the tours and tenders into port. The ports however, were a different story! Singapore was great, but after that the experience in the ports deteriorated. Unless you are hooked on Temples, and want to experience life in a third world country this is an itinerary you might want to miss. The contrast between the people who have everything and the millions who have nothing was very much in evidence. Every time we went ashore we were constantly pestered by beggars, taxi drivers and the tuk tuk's who would not accept "no thank you" . Sihanoukville in particular was awful and it appeared to be just a convenient stop for passengers to be offloaded for overnight tours to Ankor Wat . In Summary: I would cruise with Oceania again, but would research the itinerary in detail before choosing which cruise. Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
Getting on and off the ship was very professionally done. The room was smaller than I thought it would be. I know trick photography is used when taking pictures of the room, but a little more space for the price would be nice. Everything ... Read More
Getting on and off the ship was very professionally done. The room was smaller than I thought it would be. I know trick photography is used when taking pictures of the room, but a little more space for the price would be nice. Everything worked well in the room, tv, air, good mattress. No problems with the bathroom, plenty of supplies. The service was the best. 5+ for sure. The cruise entertainment director, Willie Aames, of 8 is Enough fame, was born for this job. A great job is an understatement. The food was very good for all meals, but the speciality restaurants, in my opinion, lacked the quality that the regular restaurants offered. The wine was reasonably priced with an excellent selection. They even hold a bottle for you until the next day and serve it in any restaurant that you go to. There was never an "at sea" day so we used the pool on only 2 occasions. Never a problem getting a place to relax. We didn't take any of the tours, which were extra; instead we opted to explore on our own. Even if they were free, it's not likely we would have taken them since many of them were too physical for us. Most tours went from 75-150 dollars. The ship often had courtesy buses in-town to take us to and from the ship. Nickel and dimeing is a problem. Charging 2 dollars for washing and 2 dollars for drying is ridiculous. So is having only 1 laundry room on the entire ship(700 passengers). The line starts at 7:00AM and planning a wash is not vacation time well spent. The Internet costs about 140 dollars for about 2 hours. Too expensive. All in all, the pluses exceed the minuses so it was a trip well worth it. Read Less
Sail Date May 2011
I would like to break the cruise down in to various categories as it is important that I recognise the good and bad with Nautica/Oceania Cruise. It is also based on our experiences on other cruise lines and is my personal perspective from ... Read More
I would like to break the cruise down in to various categories as it is important that I recognise the good and bad with Nautica/Oceania Cruise. It is also based on our experiences on other cruise lines and is my personal perspective from a non-American perspective.Embarkation : Being Concierge certainly helped with an early and speedy check in in Hong Kong. Well organised. Disembarkation : In Dubai and the most organised we have have seen on any cruise vessel and they even had porters organised for us and which were paid for. Went as smooth as silk.Food : Firstly, a vessel who has pastry chefs who know how to make nice and fresh desserts and pastries. Apart from Croissants(however no-one on vessels seems to be able to do them correctly.Terrace/Tapas - was our main eating area. Great food and the evening meals were great. However, calling it Tapas is a mis-naming for the evening.Polo Grill was great and the meat was cooked exactly how I like it(french Blue). First Prime Rib I have had in some 15 years that had no fat in it.Toscanas - most meals were great except for the prosciutto(Not good and very unitalian).Grand Dining Room - only ate there a couple of times for dinner - Food was average and was just like any large restaurant in the USA. Get the order, serve it fast. Do not blame the chefs or waiters as it is the biggest restaurant on the boat and it is always full. Never ate b/fast or lunch there.Waves - Food was just OK - hamburgers were very bland - smoothies were greatService - generally extremely good - from cabin stewards to waiting staff to front desk and hospitality desks. They were absolutely brilliantThe mixture of nationalities of the crew is amazing and we found that talking to a lot of them was a most interesting experience especially regarding the ports were visiting.One very annoying thing was the speed at which plates were removed from your table with cutlery. Take the last morsel and a hand was there to take the plate away. When are people going to learn that we non-Americans(there a were a lot of non-Americans on this cruise) do not put everything on one plate we have a different plate for each course.One other thing is the coke tasted like diet coke. Found out why. It is served as a type of coke that is produced for maritime and air travel purposes only so a lot less caffeine.Also took a while for the staff to work out what an espresso coffee is.Alcohol - This is a rip off - $USD20 bottles of wine in Australia being S50 - $60 per bottle plus 18%. Not good. However, had some great wines from South America and Europe on the list which we did sample.Tours - we booked our own as most were only 50% - 60% of the cost of the boat tours and we had a private driver and guide with a vehicle. We did 2 small tours with Oceania(one on a large coach and one was for only 10 - 16 people). Take the 10 - 16 people one as it has more freedom. But if you can try and do your own thing.Passengers : Met some great people from USA, Canada, Europe and England who have travelled a lot also and this also made it an interesting trip. I mention this as most people we have met on RSSC are there for the looks and name and not interested in most places being visited. The international passengers(Non-Australian) on Nautica were great and very pleasant.I will apologise for some of the Australians who's behaviour I thought left me a little embarrassed.Also to the couple of Americans who say Australians do not tip. Our gratuities are included in our fare we pay for the cruise and also some Australians did pay tips to tours guides and drivers(EG we did)Cabaret- Did not go there as we go on these trips to visit places and we also tend to eat late.Entertainment - saw one act and that was not that good. One thing missing is a piano bar where we can listen to some music and have after dinner drinks in a quiet area and not near poker machines.Ports of Call - Most were very good and those that were not we were aware of anyway before we embarked onto Nautica(checked on the internet and with a local travel agent in each place we went to(used the net again). Yes, some ports were a bit out of the way or just industrial wharfs but this will happen as cruising into some of these ports is only just beginning on a regular basis.EG Chang May(Vietnam and backup for DaNang) is an industrial port with no facilities at all, no shops or townn there, roads are extremely bad but it is still easy to get to DaNang/Hoi An or Hue from there. Saigon(HCMC) cruise terminal is near city centre - great location - however for other very large cruise vessels they may berth at the new port some 90 minutes out of HCMC centre, Phuket again is out of the main town centre but taxis and tuk tuks(4 wheel variety) are cheap and get you there in 25 - 30 minutes, Yangon(Myanmar/Burma) wharf we berthed at is Thilawa some 60 minutes from Yangon Centre. Again no facilities there as an industrail/commercial wharf area but again you are not there for that. Muscat(Oman) was again a difficult port to get out of but we had shuttle buses for the 5 minute drive into the city area and from there do what you want in total safetyCabin. Yes it is a lot smaller than RSSC and we were concerned about it. However, after a few days we were OK with it and all went well. It was clean, the room stewards were brilliant. bathroom is a little small(especially the shower). Plenty of storage areas for things.Other nice features not on other vessels we have sailed on. Shuttle buses provide at many of the ports. Having a local tourist board person come on board in a number of portswas great. Having the local bank come on board to exchange USD to a local currencyand then take local currency back(incl. coins) and giving us USD back was a brilliant idea. Exchange rate was also very reasonable. Having organised and paid for porters at port of disembarkation made this process so much easier For a coffee drinker we had access to coffee on a 24/7 basis Using the Ships Laundry was so reasonable compared to other cruise linesAnnoyances Paying for the use of the laundrette on deck 7 There is the only one laundrette and it is small so very crowded If a presentation by the Oceania Ambassador is being made some idea of the make up of the passengers helps so that we can be told what the cost is w/o airfares as they are no use to non-Americans flying to say Hong Kong or Capetown or Buenos Aires or Rio De Janeiro I also think that Head Office and the vessel management need to know what each other is doing as once on board they knew what was being done(EG shuttle buses). Blame this on Floridian office of Oceania. A few more external power points in various lounges would be good so one can do trip reports, download photos etc. with a cup of coffee and pastry. Only found one in card room.Overall, the vessel was great, generally food was good, cruise was brilliant, staff/crew were great, well organised and yes we have booked another cruise with Oceania in 2012 as it meets our requirements and goes to those places we have on our bucket list to see whilst we still can. Very few other cruise boats do a lot of the cruises Oceania do and I suspect that is why we met a lot of very interesting people who had travelled a lot.Oceania, apart from some minor irritations, was great and provides a better value for the dollar than RSSC. Read Less
Sail Date March 2011
Likes and dislikes are individual tastes and here are mine. There are many pluses about the Nautica. The staff is very good. The rooms are comfortable with marvelous mattress and bed linens, plenty of storage, and adequate 220 and ... Read More
Likes and dislikes are individual tastes and here are mine. There are many pluses about the Nautica. The staff is very good. The rooms are comfortable with marvelous mattress and bed linens, plenty of storage, and adequate 220 and 110 outlets. I could bring alcohol and wine on board. Water and sodas are complimentary and water is always on the gangway as one debarks. Also, my cell phone received a signal on days at sea and in most ports (I have a SIMM which has both a US and international number). The best things about the Nautica are the size of the ship and its itinerary. These were the two reasons I chose to sail with Oceania and in neither was I disappointed. Entertainment is not a big deal to me. I am focused on the ports, people and their culture. However, Nautica seems to do a good job trying to entertain as many people as possible with a veritable plethora of games, contests, trivia, projects and crafts, and some lecturers. Terry Bishop, a historical lecturer, was excellent. The bands, from what little I heard, were good. There are endless interest groups almost to the point of nausea. Our Captain Junica Brajcic of Dubrovnik Croatia is charming and quite the celebrity. He commanded the Nautica during a Somali pirate attack in the Nov 2008. However, there are some issues to consider before sailing with Nautica or Oceania. First, the ship excursions are expensive and rather shallow. Comments from those on the tours ranged from "great" to "rip-off." I arranged private tours for the ports, did twice as much yet paid about a quarter of what the ship charged. As an example, in Ghana, their 5 hours to Elmina and Cape Coast Castles cost $229, their 6 hours to Kakum Park and the canopy walkway cost $229. Our private tour of 8 hours to Elmina and Kakum cost $90. For those not wanting to be off the ship too long, or miss their trivia game, or uninterested in seeing as much of the port as possible, I suppose the ship's tours are adequate. Meeting people thru the online Cruise Critic, there is an opportunity to form small groups and independently tour the ports. And by the way, it would also help, for those not using Oceania for overpriced pre-cruise arrangements, if Oceania notified us the name of the port where we were to find the ship. Secondly, the Internet is slow and expensive. It has been a long time since I have had to use dialup. I purchased a 100-minute package for $80. However, when these minutes were used, the next time I signed in it cost .95 each minute. An answer is WIFI. Before sailing, unsubscribe to sites and ask friends not to send any attachments. I took my iTouch and logged directly into my GMail account. I could download my mail, send 2 or 3 messages, and publish my Blog in about 6-7 minutes. And I could get a signal both in my cabin and everywhere about the ship. I am extremely disappointed in the air arrangements. I paid the extra fee to leave early and fly through Chicago to pick up my sister who is asthmatic and mobility-challenged. I paid for both of our cruises on my credit card, we stayed in the same stateroom, and I could not have stressed more how important it was that our flights be coordinated. No such thing happened. While we were on the same flights, our seats were at opposite ends of the plane and each leg of the trip I had to find someone to exchange seats. We were told by the airlines that our reservations were not linked. The Nautica has recently been refurbished and most public areas are quite nice. However, there is a lack of quiet deck space. Chairs around the pool are in a noisy area and at times the area was too hot or windy to use. And rarely did anyone ever come around to see if I wanted refreshments. There is an area along both sides of Deck 5 but only a few lounges. We were able to occasionally get a staff person to bring more lounges. I am not overly impressed with the dining nor the wine. Toscana was a major disappointment because of its unremarkable decor and menu. Our first and only dinner there took over 3 hours to serve. We cancelled all future reservations. Polo Grill was better but steaks were not consistently grilled. The food and service in the Main Dining Room was generally better. The best however, was dining on the terrace at Tapas (inside is utilitarian). Probably the best food most nights was cooked-to-your-order specials. For lunch, Waves was great. The wine at a minimum of $30 a bottle was not that good (add 18% service to all alcohol). Hopefully the $75+ was better. A real drawback is there is no place to get something to eat 24/7. To call for room service to get a sandwich or piece of bread or cheese is silly. Whatever you do, try not to exchange money on the ship. The absolute worst was when a "bank" came on board after docking. Perhaps the worst, and most offensive, issue with Nautica is the different colored WorldCard used to signify level of stateroom booked. In fact, many things are tied into the level of stateroom booked, from boarding times, amenities, and dining arrangements. Forget pre-reserving a table to include friends unless your guests are traveling at the same level of accommodation. My travel mates upgraded to Deck 7, we were Deck 4. They could not reserve a table to include us but 4 of their 6 reservations. Forget doing it later on the ship as this is just not going to meet with success. And what is the reason for providing different colored WorldCards according to level of accommodation? Read Less
Sail Date November 2010
Istanbul to Civitavecchia (Rome) August 4th 2009 on board ms Nautica Without doubt Oceania Cruises is certainly among the "better" companies in the cruise sector. I read here several reviews, mostly positive but also ... Read More
Istanbul to Civitavecchia (Rome) August 4th 2009 on board ms Nautica Without doubt Oceania Cruises is certainly among the "better" companies in the cruise sector. I read here several reviews, mostly positive but also several pointing less or even negative point, and I believe that both are right! Lets try to put this somewhat together: Let's start with the positive points: - With only 680 passengers for this size of ship and 400 crew members, these ships are absolutely in a good midsize and they have an exceptional ratio of passenger / crew of 1.71 to 1. - The vessels are clean, well maintained, even when you are looking for garbage, dirty floors etc... you will have difficulties to pin them down! - Their major asset is of course the high quality cuisine. The Grand Dining room can accommodate serious quantity of guests and there is enough well trained staff. You have free seating and plenty of choice in the daily menu. The food is excellent, very presented: simply delicious. Jacques Pepin who is giving a certain imprint of the high French cuisine has adapted also at a certain point to some American tastes. We had French Chief Pâtissier on board and the desserts and pastry were really a top. The image of Jacques Pepin is somewhat overdone perhaps, when you find on the menu every under his ... a New York Sirloin Steak! Also the Toscana and the Polo Grill much smaller are worth a visit. They are "unofficially" restrained in practise to the higher-level staterooms. But at least once a trip you can make a reservation in each. To get a second one is more as complicated! Cuisine is indeed more sophisticated and excellent. However I had the feeling that the staff was less trained and certainly fewer in number as in the Grand Dining room. Terrace Cafe combined with Tapas on the Terrace is a self - service restaurant having an opportunity to have your meal outside (if space is available of course). We used it mostly for breakfast ; At night they offer basically the same dishes as in the Grand Dining room but with some extra of different items. The Waves grill is "basic" for a small snack at noon. - There are several bars but only the spacious Horizons at the front and Martinis offer a "happy hour" between 5pm and 6pm. - The staterooms are nice and well maintained ... unless you are in the top layer, you do not have a fridge in your room. The bathroom is rather small of size. - Very useful for passengers who are arranging shore visits themselves is the fact that at arrival in the different ports, a local person from the tourist offices is at board to give useful information and maps. Also the daily information on your television screen about the next ports are quite interesting. - Excellent pre-voyage documents in a personalised booklet. Never seen such!! - Check in at the terminal is well done and even if you are earlier, you can get your stateroom if available. - The cruise ports and stops mostly good. Arrival and sailing hours are reasonably good. In our specific cruise there was only one worthless port: Olbia. Even the local church was not a pixel worth for a photo! What I do not understand is that even last year people found it bad. Simply changing this port with Bonifacio in Corsica (70 km) would be wonderful! These are strong point, however there are a few shadows: - Oceania seems to be building up rather hierarchic and bureaucratic when something is not within the book of the "company policy". Argument used each time the staff cannot scope with your question. It goes from even small items where some are close to a "comedy caper" up to more complicated such as the use of Fitness by adolescent teens from 15 - 18 even accompanied by their parent. As rather irritant and later comedy caper, not very "bad as such" I give you the "water problem". When checking is at the room there 2 complimentary bottles of still water. I simply ask to have sprinkling water in stead of it as we prefer this. Last year on board of Windstar, it took perhaps 15 minutes and the bottle was changed for a bottle of Perrier. You cannot believe it, but the same on Oceania took 3 to 4 days! I had the visit in my stateroom of 2 managers, before the 4th day there were 2 bottles of Perrier with a personal note of the General Manager!! I still question myself if authorisation has been asked in Miami! On the other hand in each restaurant they spoil still water with hundred litre a day when you see the number of full glasses that people do not drink. We had the difficulty to ... refuse the water! But if you want sprinkling they will charge you! - If the ship is at anchor you needs the tender. Another person pointed the same problem. You have to go to the 5th floor, taking a coloured ticket , in theory wait in the lounge to be conducted as "cattle" down the stairs to the 3rd floor! Again on Windstar you simply go and take the first available place! Even Dottie was standing on the 4th floor to stop people (mostly non Americans, a little less disciplined)! - A major item is the rates and prices charged on board. Even when the USD is less as the EUR, they are simply high and even outrageous: a. excursions are simply outrageous expensive! We arrange them ourselves but when you that even a the less expensive tour in small places are charged between 80 and 100 usd and some other simply at usd 109 or 139 per person. In many cases you arrange it for 10 pct of the rates if not less! b. Wines and drinks are expensive. The "cheapest" red wine is a Rioja at USD 29 plus 18 pct service charge!!!. On Windstar you found several at usd 21 / 23 plus 15 pct. c. Another overcharge is the Internet connection. It is not the rate as such, which is the problem but the incredible low very low extremely low speed! To get in my web mail it takes normally even abroad at an internet cafe not even a minute! On board it took more than 8 minutes (yes 8!) to only get in... and then you did not read even the first message! At the rate of the first volume package it cost already usd 6.40! To get into your web mail! Same applies to all sites! Before you printed your boarding pass of your airline, be sure that you will have paid between 15 and 20 usd! - Television is mainly destined for American public. On my remark on the mid voyage questionnaire, I mentioned that with satellite they could easily add a few other language chains such a French, Italian and Spanish ones. Received a phone call from Dottie in person that 85 pct are US, so it is not necessary to put other language chains. If they want to attract to the European market in such a way ?? - Disembarkation is quite different. Suitcases have to be put already at night outside the room. Convenient if you know that items you use in the morning such as shaving cream and other liquids are prohibited ... in your hand luggage on the plane. Nice to see in the terminal people kneeling on the ground opening their suitcases to transfer all the forbidden items! Class!!! Also breakfast before 08AM otherwise nothing! Conclusion: Overall the cruise was excellent and Oceania is certainly a good cruise line. The negative remarks should not be a "showstopper", except perhaps the extra charges that are expensive. The problem is that the small things mentioned are irritating and there is really no reason to be so narrow minded with "company policy" . Perhaps I compare too much with Windstar (180° different) much more flexible. Read Less
Sail Date August 2009
Nautica Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 3.9
Dining 5.0 4.3
Entertainment 3.0 3.3
Public Rooms 5.0 4.4
Fitness Recreation 5.0 3.8
Family 2.0 3.8
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.0
Enrichment 5.0 3.5
Service 4.0 4.5
Value For Money 5.0 3.5
Rates 5.0 3.9

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