4 Newcastle (England) to Baltic Sea Cruise & Maritime Voyages Marco Polo Cruise Reviews

As a regular cruiser I was thrown by the rigidity of dining times.Breakfast finished at 9:30 and no more available till 12:30.not only this but times varied and we had to look at cruise info to check when meals available.Its a small ship ... Read More
As a regular cruiser I was thrown by the rigidity of dining times.Breakfast finished at 9:30 and no more available till 12:30.not only this but times varied and we had to look at cruise info to check when meals available.Its a small ship more like a floating hotel and often in the bistro bar it was difficult to find a space to sit and eat a meal.The clientele were almost without exception over 65 and were probably happy enough to organise themselves for meals but I found the lack of flexibility limiting.It delivered on destinations and was reasonable on price but much preferred entertainment and general set up on Thomson.On the whole everyone was very happy with the cruise.The entertainment crew worked hard but were a singer down so a number of shows were not staged and so entertainment was not the usual cruise fare.This is very much a cruise for over 60 couples who want to see some interesting destinations ,regular meals, a bit of entertainment on the night and don't mind a lot of people around. Read Less
Sail Date June 2015
The two positives about this cruise were leaving from Newcastle and the ports of call. Marco Polo sells itself on being an old but classic ship, it is old but certainly has no class! Everything about it was a disappointment. We had ... Read More
The two positives about this cruise were leaving from Newcastle and the ports of call. Marco Polo sells itself on being an old but classic ship, it is old but certainly has no class! Everything about it was a disappointment. We had booked a cabin with an outside view (there are no balconies) and were dismayed to see we actually had two portholes which were so dirty you could not see out of them and they were so high you had to stand on a chair. The cabin was very small and the TV was very old and unwatchable. The food was quite positively the worst we have ever had-anywhere! When basic items ran out (eggs at breakfast) we had to live without them. Cheese and crackers after dinner consisted of half a cheese slice, a cube of cheddar and 1 cracker. The salads had to be seen to be believed. The Dining Room was packed far too full and our table for eight should have been for four. The service all over the ship was appalling, with some positively rude staff,and most surly and unhelpful. The serve yourself tea and coffee stations were always busy with no seating available and very often, no cups. When staff were asked for replenishment of cups, they just shrugged shoulders and walked away - it was someone else's job. Unlike other cruise lines, mealtimes were strictly adhered to and if halfway through breakfast at closing time, everything was cleared. At breakfast, lunch and afternoon tea, all in the Dining Room, you were herded in and the tables were filled up for the convenience of staff, so the option was not there for you to sit in a place of your choice or even without others. Although I have never been to a holiday camp, I imagine it may be like this. There were never any seats in the bars in the evenings and no assistance from staff to find any, we gave up.The entertainment was mixed, the one and only guest entertainer, a musical funny man, was very good, but only gave two performances. All other entertainment was provided by 3 singers who seemed to be expected to be everyone, ranging from Frank Sinatra to Freddy Mercury, never to a high standard, and a team of dancers. The orchestra were very good, but again not used. The lecturers were good but were not used enough. We have loved every cruise we have ever done prior to this one-this was a learning curve - never again with Cruise Maritime. Read Less
Sail Date June 2015
This was the second cruise on the Marco Polo having enjoyed the first one to Norway in 2009. The itinerary was absolutely perfect for us. We had the chance to visit the most wonderful places. The Marco Polo is a really comfortable ... Read More
This was the second cruise on the Marco Polo having enjoyed the first one to Norway in 2009. The itinerary was absolutely perfect for us. We had the chance to visit the most wonderful places. The Marco Polo is a really comfortable liner,looks a bit dated from the dock but on board is another world. She is a very clean and well kept liner. Our Cabin was really nice and very spacious. Marjya, our cabin housekeeper was wonderful and kept our cabin in pristine condition. The restaurant was excellent, food was delicious and the service from Sid and his staff was wonderful. Many thanks to Rosario for our lessons in napkin folding and for being such a good laugh. Thanks too to Wint and Phyo, and our lovely wine waitress, (table 9). The entertainment was superb every night and we really enjoyed Laurence Robinson , the classical performer, immensely. The bar staff were outstanding and we enjoyed our laughs with Roland and Petr. Bless you all for making this cruise the best holiday I have ever had, so much so I have booked again for next April to return to the fjords. Read Less
Sail Date June 2014
This was our first cruise chosen for its interesting itinerary, the highlight being two days in St Petersburg. We imagined that our most enduring memories would be of the Russian Palaces, which are indeed magnificent, but the things that ... Read More
This was our first cruise chosen for its interesting itinerary, the highlight being two days in St Petersburg. We imagined that our most enduring memories would be of the Russian Palaces, which are indeed magnificent, but the things that stand out in our minds at present are the unfailing courteousness of the crew on the Marco Polo and the enormous friendliness of our fellow passengers. As we sailed from Newcastle, this may have something to do with the fact that most people were from the North of England and Scotland which created a very convivial atmosphere. As first time cruisers, we liked the idea of a relatively small, traditional ship with only 800 passengers. We had read reviews that the ship looked ‘tired’, but we did not find this to be the case. Our cabin was in pristine condition and kept spotlessly clean by the attendant Luis. The décor of the public areas was also of a high standard. It has to be remembered that the Marco Polo is almost 50 years old, so you are sailing on a slice of maritime history. When berthed next to larger and more modern cruise ships, it had the appearance of a large private yacht with much more elegant lines than its modern counterparts. As no one has a limitless budget, there are one or two things we would have liked to have known in advance, for instance, the cost of drinks. These turned out to be very reasonable, a premium gin and tonic costing £3.95 and only £3.00 during happy hour, whilst the ‘cocktail of the day’ was available at £3.10. The most economical way of buying wine for dinner is to go for a package – 6 bottles of very pleasant white, rose and red (in any combination) for £80 which provides a saving of around 30% in comparison with buying them individually. Our criticisms are fairly minor – the dinner service was rather rushed and the quality of the food could have been better. Instead of having six courses every evening, CMV could consider having three or four of a higher standard. This would also mean that more time could be allowed between courses. We also heard some passenger complain of noise and vibration on the lower decks, so it may best to book a cabin higher up if these things are likely to irritate you. We enjoyed the on-board entertainment, the highlights being the Russian evening of song and dance which was performed with real verve – perhaps because many cast members were from the Ukraine. There were also performances from Laurence Robinson, a very talented tenor. In all of this, I think you have to consider ‘value for money’. It you want more sophisticated food or entertainment, then it could be a case of digging deeper into your pocket and booking on a more modern vessel. But if you do this you will be missing out on a lot of things which are unique to the Marco Polo, its fascinating history as a liner travelling between St Petersburg and Montreal in the Cold War era (there is very good on-board lecture about this), its small ship atmosphere and the deck arrangement at the stern of the vessel where everyone congregates in a party atmosphere. In November, the ship goes in for another extensive refit which will extend its life by another five years, so book up now to enjoy this unique experience!   Read Less
Sail Date June 2014
Marco Polo Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabin 3.0 N/A
Dining 3.0 3.5
Entertainment 3.0 3.6
Public Rooms 4.0 3.7
Fitness & Recreation 3.0 N/A
Family 1.0 3.2
Shore Excursions 4.0 N/A
Enrichment Activities 4.0 N/A
Service 4.0 3.8
Value for Money 5.0 N/A

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