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277 P&O Cruises Canary Islands Cruise Reviews

We have cruised with P&O on a number of occasions, and have particularly enjoyed those on the adults only ships. We liked Oriana and were disappointed when she was sold. So we waited for Aurora to be refurbished as an adults only ship ... Read More
We have cruised with P&O on a number of occasions, and have particularly enjoyed those on the adults only ships. We liked Oriana and were disappointed when she was sold. So we waited for Aurora to be refurbished as an adults only ship and chose this 13 night cruise to Madeira and the Canary Islands to escape the fogs, rain and dark days of November. It proved to be a good choice! Embarkation was speedy and efficient. We were on board be 1pm and first impressions were good. We enjoyed a welcome on board lunch in the Medina restaurant which was most enjoyable, then repaired to our cabin, mid-ship on B deck. We were blown away by our mini-suite which was spacious and well appointed. Everything was clean and fresh and looked new. Tea and coffee making was available, but my husband declared that the coffee pods supplied with the machine did not make the very strong coffee that he prefers, so he only used it once! Our steward Maria kept everything spotless and even cleaned the exterior windows, but we were concerned that she had too many suites to look after and that we had little time to chat and get to know her better During the first three days we were at sea so there was plenty of time to explore the ship, try the various restaurants and see what entertainment was available. The elegant style of the refurbishment has given this traditional ship a new lease of life. Crossing the Bay of Biscay the weather was rough, and access to the promenade deck was restricted, but the ship coped well. Tip - if you suffer from motion sickness, choose a cabin on the lower decks and avoid the forward cabins. As we gained calmer seas we were able to enjoy walking along the wrap-around promenade deck and to appreciate the teak decking and elegant sweeping aft decks. We always choose freedom dining and prefer a table for two. Sometimes we had to wait for a table, but usually no more than 15 or 20 minutes. The food in the Medina restaurant was mostly good. On formal nights the choice and quality of the food was excellent. The wine list is much improved than hitherto and the prices were reasonable. Service was good, but the waiters had too many tables and often seemed rushed. We did not much like the food in Sindhu, but that is probably down to personal taste. The waitresses in Sindhu were charming. We would have preferred an Italian speciality restaurant rather than the Ocean Grill - the menu did not appeal. We had lunch a few times in the Glass House and enjoyed being able to try a wide selection of wines by the glass - the selection of wines by the glass in the main restaurants is limited. The lectures on sea days were interesting and the resident musicians were mostly good - depending on one's personal taste. One guest performer, Wild Sax, was excellent. We would have preferred more jazz and classical concerts. It was disappointing that the piano in the central atrium area was not used more. What should have been the heart of the ship was far too quiet. Listening to the piano, cocktail to hand, while waiting for dinner is one of the greatest pleasures for us. Unfortunately the pager system for your table does not penetrate as far as the Crows Nest where the pianist was usually playing around the pre-prandial hour. We only went to one production show by the Headliners, as the times are not convenient if you dine between 7 and 9pm. For the early show one needs to arrive in the theatre early, otherwise there are no seats. The late show was usually too late for us, specially on port days when we had been on shore. However, there is a separate cinema and a show lounge which offer alternative entertainments, so there is always something to do in the evenings. We enjoyed our visit to Madeira - our favourite island. It has so much to offer: stunning scenery, exotic flora, beautiful gardens and a mild climate. We took a taxi to the Botanic Gardens, bought some Madeira wine for Christmas, then enjoyed strolling around Funchal in the warm sunshine and seeing the Christmas decorations. Then on to La Palma where we went on an excursion to the centre of the island which is a huge crater called the Caldera Taburiente - more scenery surrounded by mountains. It has a world class collection of observatories set up there because of the clear air and low light pollution. Next was Gran Canaria where we visited some attractive villages and gardens - very different from the tourist beaches in the south of the island. We then called at Lanzarote, which is still volcanically active - lots to see there is one is a first-time visitor. Finally Lisbon where we went on one of the antique trams up and down the hills, along narrow streets - great fun. Sailing towards the sunset down the River Tagus was a fitting end to our pre-Christmas holiday. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
We wanted an early spring cruise to visit the Canaries where we have been several times before. Been on Ventura the sister ship but Azura is not the same level of ship. Water damage to buffet ceiling tiles, which were not replaced with ... Read More
We wanted an early spring cruise to visit the Canaries where we have been several times before. Been on Ventura the sister ship but Azura is not the same level of ship. Water damage to buffet ceiling tiles, which were not replaced with new, just replaced. The tiles were disgusting. In the buffet area we noted large holes in the carpet under the chairs. Carpet in corridors deck 8 needed stretching as it was all over the place and a trip hazard. Buffet cutlery, glasses, plates were dirty on a regular basis, need to look at the dishwashers. Mentioned to staff, not interested. We inspected all utensils after that to find clean items discarding three forks one lunch time. The Oriental Restaurant also had water damage to walls and ceiling. The menu seemed to be a quiz every evening, nothing was what it seemed by the description. seemed to be pot luck as to whether we could eat the food or not. The best thing about the cruise was Steve King talking about 60s music. We booked for both lunch and evening at Sindhu when they were doing special prices. The evening one was only a few pounds more and much better value. We have a cruise booked to the Med on Britannia in September hoping for a better standard, it should be it is costing enough! We have also booked in Iona for Fjords in May next year. We are really trying to support P&O but come on guys get your act together otherwise you will lose our future custom. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
I chose this cruise to get a little bit of sun, rather than sit at home watching the rain. This being my third time on Azura, I thought I knew what to expect. Embarkation went smoothly, and I was in my cabin swiftly. I noticed that the ... Read More
I chose this cruise to get a little bit of sun, rather than sit at home watching the rain. This being my third time on Azura, I thought I knew what to expect. Embarkation went smoothly, and I was in my cabin swiftly. I noticed that the plug in the basin was closed,and I wondered why. It didn't take me long to find the answer. I was on deck fourteen, but when I went to decks six and seven, THE SMELL OF RAW SEWAGE WAS OVERPOWERING !!!. Lots of people were complaining throughout the whole cruise. I spoke to reception desk about this,only to be told that they were aware of this problem, and they were working on it. Previous reviews that I have read have indicated that the problem has been on board the ship for some time. The Captain was never to be seen around the ship,except for photo shoots, nor was the chief Engineer,as I would have approached one of them to ask about the problem, which continued for the entire duration of the cruise.( I later found that the basin was kept plugged to prevent the smell entering my cabin). I dined in the restaurant on only three occasions,as the food was only lukewarm, and on one dinner the ribeye steak was so tough that three members at my table had to send it back. After that I dined at the buffet,where the food was Lukewarm too. The entertainment was mediocre,same old gags from old comedians. On one occasion the show was cancelled because of rough seas. To conclude, six sea days are too much,when the entertainment is poor. However if you like dancing,or quizzes,or overpriced bingo,or old movies then this ones for you. I won't be back on Azura! I have a Cruise booked on Brittania for next year,but I won't be going,unless P&o redress me for the disappointment that I endured on this cruise. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
We have been with P & O in the past and have enjoyed it, I read some negative reviews previously but I could find no fault with this ship,staff,food,entertainnment. It was good value for money. The food in my opinion is some of the ... Read More
We have been with P & O in the past and have enjoyed it, I read some negative reviews previously but I could find no fault with this ship,staff,food,entertainnment. It was good value for money. The food in my opinion is some of the best I have enjoyed on any ship,the standard and presentation is excellent. I think if people complain about the standard of food in the restaurant then they must be hard to please. The choices are excellent each night and plentiful. Well done P & O. Plenty of shows although I do not usually go to many which is my personal choice. I enjoyed the cinema on sea days although not all films were to my personal preference. Plenty going on around the ship at different times and the Lisbon sail away party was excellent. It had to be held indoors due to bad weather but it was fun. The entertainment team were friendly and always made quizzes etc exciting and had banter with passengers. We has a large outside cabin as there were three in our party and it was plenty big enough for us. It had a large window which we all enjoyed especially when in port. Our cabin steward Angelo was excellent (Deck 9 cabin 192) he kept our cabin spotless and always found time to speak to us each time we saw him. All the staff we came across were really friendly and helpful. There was quite a lot of older passengers on this trip and I saw on more than one occassion staff helping them to their seats and carrying their trays in the buffet restaurant. I know from speaking to other passengers how much this was appreciated. It was quite nice not queing like you sometimes have to on the larger ships and we never had to wait long for the lift to get about (we have on the larger ships on many occasions). Drinks were reasonably priced a bottle of the house Rose was £16.50 which was very reasonable and it was a decent quality. A pint of John Smiths bitter was £4 10. We enjoyed a pre dinner drink at Andersons bar where you got snacks with your drinks in a lovely sophistacated atmosphere. I had read the ship looks tired well maybe in some places but in the main it is spotless clean and very classy. I know a lot of people who I spoke to love this ship and I can see why now I have been on it. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Having cruised before on smaller ships, we thought we would try one of the 'biggies' and as we wanted a Christmas and New Year cruise to somewhere warm, we chose P & O's Ventura cruise to The Canaries and Madeira. The ... Read More
Having cruised before on smaller ships, we thought we would try one of the 'biggies' and as we wanted a Christmas and New Year cruise to somewhere warm, we chose P & O's Ventura cruise to The Canaries and Madeira. The weather couldn't have been kinder with just a bit or rain in Madeira (didn't spoil the wonderful New Year fireworks display though). Both ways across the Bay of Biscay were really smooth which was a real bonus. As for the cruise itself, the service and food was very good; most of the entertainment was excellent; our cabin was fine and our cabin steward was first class. My only disappointment was that apart from a watercolour painting course (which would have cost an extra £21) there were no craft courses - which we've had on previous P & O cruises. Embarkation and disembarkation in Southampton went really smoothly. The various excursions we went on were all great. So all in all we were very pleased with our holiday. Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
I'm writing this review as my others in sections. Sailing from Southampton UK. Embarkation/Disembarkation. As with all of my other P&O cruises, P&O have got this to a fine art. I had to be out of my digs at 1200 and I ... Read More
I'm writing this review as my others in sections. Sailing from Southampton UK. Embarkation/Disembarkation. As with all of my other P&O cruises, P&O have got this to a fine art. I had to be out of my digs at 1200 and I arrived at Southampton Docks around 1300. My car was taken to a long-term car park (provided free by P&O) and I went into the main check-in hall. This hall is huge with literally hundreds of people waiting. There were dozens of P&O check-in people on one side and we all had a coloured card with letter for our times. My check-in time was 1530 so I had a while to wait. I eventually checked in at 1500 and was onboard by 1530. I will say that there wasn't any refreshments available in the hall so if you're a bit hungry/thirsty, you'd have to wait till you're onboard or bring something with you. In a first, when I did get to my cabin, my bags were already there. On my last years cruise (also on Britannia) I had one bag there but the other I didn't get till around 2200-and this was after a "heated" discussion at reception. Disembarkation was very easy. I'm a "walk off". Thats someone who can carry their own bags with them. Walk-offs have to be off the ship between 0700 & 0800 (you have to be out of your cabin by 0800 anyway). I picked up my car and I was on my way home by 0830. Demographics. Exclusively British. I didn't hear any other accents onboard apart from the crew. As we travelled outside of the school holidays, there wasn't many families-and the ones that were had pre-school kids under five years old. The average age of the passengers I estimate to be middle age or a little higher-exactly what I expected. I was on another P&O ship in the Easter holidays in 2017 with around 400 kids. This was a nightmare with screaming kids running amok all over the place-but this time we had peace and quiet. The ship and it's crew. The vast majority of the ships crew are either Fillipino or Indian with the officers either British or European. All of the crew are extremely helpful and nothing is too much trouble. The ship itself is another story. Britannia is now three years old and is beginning to show her age. Carpets are looking worn and there are paint chips all over the place. The outside paintwork is starting to show rust patches and the general feel of the ship says that it's had a hard life. I've been told that Britannia is going for a full refit in October 2019-and I have to say that it's about time. I will add that the crew kept the ship spotless for the entire cruise with all of the public areas and toilets clinically clean. My stewardess-Gladys-kept my cabin perfect all the time (and she got a generous tip from me). Food and drink. I was on select dining (in the Peninsular restaurant) and had my evening meal at 1830. I was on a table of 9-all solo travellers. The food on offer was excellent and I can't fault it at all. Our waiters were very attentive-although I will say that sometimes they wanted to rush things along a bit-but they did have another sitting at 2030. The daily menus were a little underwhelming on occasion with fish and chicken being the dominant ingredient. We did have (Michelin starred chef) Marco Pierre White onboard for this trip and his menu one night was fantastic. Mr. White's Beef Wellington was superb. The Horizon Buffet on Lido deck was also very good. Breakfasts were usually "Full English" but there were other options including cereals, smoked fish, fruit, muffins/Danish (for breakfast?), yogurts...The list is almost endless. Lunch and dinner were equally as good with wide selection each day. There were themed menus too-curry night, British Pub Lunch, Italian. Again, the list is too long. As to alcohol...Thats another story. As with every other P&O review I've written, I still say that P&O are overcharging the passengers for alcohol. P&O claim that they charge pub prices. Not from my point of view they don't. Pints were around £3.95 to £4.50 with premium bottles (330ml) around the same price. In my regular pub, I pay £3.25 or a pint and if I go to my local Wetherspoons (to non-British readers, Wetherspoons is a major UK pub chain) I pay around £2.50 for a pint. So, no P&O are not charging pub prices. It's about time cruise companies lowered their alcohol prices and I'm certain that their passengers would appreciate it. Our route. We visited (in this order) La Coruna (Spain), Madeira, The Canary Islands-Las Palmas/Tenerife/Gran Canaria and Lisbon (Portugal). The weather was quite good all the time with temperatures in the mid-to-high 20'sC-sometimes in the low 30'sC. I did several trips in most of the ports (all official P&O excursions). Sightseeing in La Coruna, Volcanoes in Las Palmas and Tenerife and a coffee plantation on Gran Canaria. In Madeira and Lisbon I did my own thing just having a walk around. NOTE. If you do your own thing in ports of call and you miss the sailaway, the ship will not wait for your return. It will then be your own responsibility to get to the next port at your own expense. If, on the other hand, you take an official P&O excursion and you're delayed, the ship will wait for your return. Entertainment. There was the usual in-house troupe "Headliners" doing shows in the main theatre. There was also several guest singers/tribute acts and in the Limelight Club we had Claire Sweeney (UK actress/singer), Cheryl Baker-formerly of Bucks Fizz and a couple of others. I did hear reports of the "Headliners" not being too good but as I didn't attend any shows, I can't comment. Brodies had the usual pub quizzes, kareoke, live football matches (thats soccer to non-British readers). We also had Professor Peter Roberts-a retired archeologist who gave a series of lectures on volcanoes in The Canary Islands and others. The Professors lectures were very interesting but sadly not well attended. P&O need to get more people like Professor Roberts. Observations. All of the passengers were very friendly but...In the buffet one day (a late breakfast) I bumped into one of my fellow diners-an elderly lady who had a fall the day before. She had a very nasty black eye, stiches in her lip and severe bruising ot her left arm. I was enquiring as to her health when an elderly guy with a tray of food shouted "EXCUSE ME!". Just before this, someone had dropped a tray of food and drink and one of the crew was clearing it up. I couldn't move backwards or sideways to accomodate this bloke and he again shouted "EXCUSE ME!". Then he just barged his way through almost pushing people out of his way. I reacted to this bloke by shouting "YOU DON'T HAVE TO SHOUT!". This he ignored. I again repeated "YOU DON'T HAVE TO SHOUT!" but again this was ignored. By this time I had around 200 to 300 people watching. I will admit to not being a "people person" but this was just plain ignorant. Also on our dinner table there was an elderly lady with a southern (London or south coast) accent. She claimed to be travelling with "a friend" but we never met this friend and the lady said her friend preferred to dine at her own time. Why would two people travelling together not be dining together? Anyway, this lady thought that she was better than the rest of us and talked down to us all the time. She was also quite rude when she did talk to us but I had to bite my lip as I was in polite company. She didn't attend on a couple of nights and we all breathed a sigh of relief. I hope that I don't meet her again as I don't think I could hold back with comments about her atttitude. Overall, this was a good cruise but as I have been to some of the ports we visited on previous cruises, it did get slightly boring. Going on cruises does give you the chance to visit several countries on one holiday and you get to meet new people-but as the ships go to the same places all the time, it's getting difficult to find something new. I'm going to the Caribbean (again) in 2019 but I'l be looking further afield for 2020. I'm already looking at India or the Far East. As a solo traveller, it's not cheap do do cruises. I really want to visit Australia/New Zealand but as I'm a solo traveller, the costs are still far too high for my budget. The daily charge (£7 per person per day over 12 years old) was still in force on this cruise. This could be removed by filling in a form at reception. BUT as of May 2019, P&O are abolishing this charge-and about time too. This daily charge is VERY unpolpular and everyone I spoke to had removed the charge. It's about time all of the cruise companies stopped doing this. These trips are expensive enough without cruise companies taking more money out of your pocket. Conclusions. The ship-a bit tatty and in need of a refit. The crew-excellent. Food & drink-again excellent but I maintain that the beer prices are far too high. Our intinerary-ok but as I wrote above, I've been to some of the countries already. Marks out of 10? I'll give this eight out of ten. I've knocked off a couple of points for too high beer prices and the ship looking a bit tatty. I would recommend Britannia to first-timers and seasoned cruisers-but wait for the refit in October 2019. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
This was a last minute booking which had to take place during school holidays,my daughter works in a school, There were many families with children of all ages but we saw no bad behaviour at any time and some of them were charming. The ... Read More
This was a last minute booking which had to take place during school holidays,my daughter works in a school, There were many families with children of all ages but we saw no bad behaviour at any time and some of them were charming. The ship was clean and very well looked after and our cabin (outside double) was spotless and attended to twice a day. So what was the problem? Food, breakfast very good lunch very good, evening meal served in Bay-Tree very poor, usually cold undercooked veg, fish, my favourite had it three times each time 2/10 so did not choose it again, fillet steak unable to cut it others on our table had the same problems, a waste of good food. However the waiters were 1st class, we also enjoyed some good which was reasonably priced. My main gripe is the entertainment - line dance classes which could be heared on the main decks all over the ship each day Films we watched The Darkest Hour - one of our favourite films - although we had seen it twice before - Shows what shows !! A ventriloquist who had an obsession with “farting” I have been on many cruises in the past and this one is the worst. The main reason we booked a cruise was for the evening entertainment a big failure on my part. However we had very good company at dinner and have some good memories. Shirley and Pam. Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
Chose this cruise as we had only been to lanzarote of the Canary Islands before and non of the other ports except Lisbon ( and then only on a business trip) the fact we had been on Ventura before (back in 2010 for our first cruise) and ... Read More
Chose this cruise as we had only been to lanzarote of the Canary Islands before and non of the other ports except Lisbon ( and then only on a business trip) the fact we had been on Ventura before (back in 2010 for our first cruise) and that it had just been spruced up was also an attraction as we would know the ship and hopefully be chilled from the start. This was also the first time our son (16) had had his own cabin, though for the last 6 years we have had Suites on various ships as they worked well for the three of us so we were prepared for some drop in perks etc offsetting the benefit of the fully seperate space. As it turned out the perks loss was no big deal as they are pretty thin on the ground with P&O anyways we did not mi. Boarding was quick and easy, we arrived about 30 mins before our allotted time but were on the ship before it having hardly sat down before our letter card was called. So other than a couple of hours on board, we did not miss the priority boarding. Breakfast in epicurean was missed as it would have been great to welcome the day on the external terrace but the MDR breakfast was ok ( Note that Bay Tree seems to be less crowded and a slightly better atmosphere for breakfast than Saffron - not sure why) Entertainment was a bit hit and miss but that is situation normal for us. We saw a couple of very good headliners shows, an excellent Adele tribute, an interesting cocktail pianist with the most individual timing and the worst duo we have ever seen on a ship. The latter were however so bad it was amusing. The chap was not a bad guitarist but his patter was like the worst of a local radio DJ and his partner was the most disinterested detached performer I have ever witnessed. She always looked like she was on the point of yawning. The music was so weak and laid back and the repertoire was seriously odd. When one night in Metropolis they suddenly broke into AC DC’s ‘highway to hell’ I honestly thought I had fallen asleep and was dreaming it. The mix of bars and performance spaces is good though it was a mistake to reduce the size of the Exchange (pub) to add cabins since our last trip as this space is clearly more popular and hence crowded by the mostly British clientele than the Glass House on the deck above which was often empty despite the excellent wines and food on offer. The pool areas were always crowded and this was exacerbated by the windy conditions which often caused the upper sun decks to be closed. We retreated to a combination of our balconies ( which the steward opened up to connect) and the Retreat which my wife had booked along with some spa treatments. The mix of ports was good though 12 days is an odd period and it would have been nice to throw in another Spanish or Portuguese or even a channel island port to pad it out to 14. Crew and service were almost all excellent with the exception of one rather grumpy sommelier. The drink prices especially the wine are very reasonable compared to other cruise lines and although it was disappointing to see that all of the room service menu was now chargeable generally the on board additional cost items including the speciality restaurants were reasonable. We tried Sindhu and Epicurean and whilst they do not quite have the atmosphere of those on Britannia ( possibly due to the fact that the decor has been adapted from the original fit outs rather than refitted) the food was excellent and the service very good. Generally we found the MDR food pretty good at dinner given the banquet nature of the cooking and the freedom dining and our willingness to share tables led to some great and often hilarious conversation over dinner. Thanks to all that we shared with! We never had to have a pager throughout the cruise which is a major advantage of being willing to share a table. ( at lunch the food was less successful and they would be better concentrating on salads and light bites similar to those in the Glass House rather than a traditional three course meal which boardered on school dinner standards at times). It’s always difficult to go back to any hotel or ship where you have had a great time in the past and as Ventura was the first ship we ever sailed on, and which triggered a year after year cruising habit since, then it was never likely to come up to the heady standards of our first cruise. Overall though we had a great time and would return to Ventura again for the right itinerary without much thought. It’s a very easy ship to enjoy. Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
A wonderful first time cruise for my family on the cruise ship Ventura sailing from Southampton to the Canary Islands. We all had a wonderful time, food was very good most of the time, waiter service & cabin crew service was excellent. ... Read More
A wonderful first time cruise for my family on the cruise ship Ventura sailing from Southampton to the Canary Islands. We all had a wonderful time, food was very good most of the time, waiter service & cabin crew service was excellent. The ship had been recently refurbished & we could not fault it. The theatre was a nice size & excellent lighting & sound. Our cabin steward Freddie was fantastic, my special needs nine year old son also called Freddie found a new best mate onboard in him. All the restaurant staff were excellent, they made sure our specials needs child was catered for as he could not eat most of the items on the menu. There were a couple of very minor issues onboard, but nothing at all to spoil the wonderful time we had, weather could have been hotter, but P & O can't do anything about that. Reception staff could have been a bit more approachable & helpful. The balcony cabin we stayed in was really nice, well worth paying the extra, would have been even better if we could have had ITV & BBC channels on the tv, the WIFI we paid so much for was very very poor, not worth the money at all. We purchased the top photo package where you are given all photo's taken on a usb stick, and 12 photo's in an album, we took full advantage and ended up with about 90 photo's, the black tie night one's were really good, we can look back at these in years to come. Our favourite P & O excursion was a trip to Loro Parque in Tenerife, we also had a great day out on Maderia which we organised ourselves by a private tour taxi. Overall we loved it and my wife & myself would book another cruise without hesitation. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
We last went to the Canary Islands in 2008 so we thought a return visit was long overdue. This was our 2nd trip on Britannia as we had already been to the Caribbean on a fly cruise in November 2017 and was our 11th cruise with P&O. ... Read More
We last went to the Canary Islands in 2008 so we thought a return visit was long overdue. This was our 2nd trip on Britannia as we had already been to the Caribbean on a fly cruise in November 2017 and was our 11th cruise with P&O. This time we boarded Britannia on Sunday 8th April 2018 on a two week cruise to the Canary Islands. We stayed overnight at our preferred hotel, New Place Hotel , Shirrell Heath, Southampton where we got a taxi to the port. We always arrive early prior to our designated boarding time as we usually manage to get on earlier. This time the boarding process was a bit of a shambles as the coloured ticket/number system of asking passengers to go to the boarding desks kept being interrupted by the arrival of the coaches whose passengers took priority over those already in the terminal. So some people, including us, missed our ticket being called. When I complained I was told not to raise my voice, which I had not done, and was told just to get in line. We did as we were told! Also boarding was halted for 10 minutes as there was an unspecified problem with the security checks. The ship is lovely and is well laid out, although more use could be made of the Atrium area which is only seating and no activities took place there except the Passenger Choir on the last sea day. We had an inside cabin on D Deck which was more than adequate with a nice bathroom with a shower cubicle and there was plenty of hanging space for 2 weeks worth of clothes. We were on the first sitting of club dining in the Oriental Restaurant. The food was very good but the menu was not as varied over the two weeks as we have experienced before. We used the Horizon Buffet Restaurant for lunch and occasionally for dinner. There was plenty of choice and we were always able to get a table without any problem. My wife is a Type 1 diabetic and although the main restaurant was very good in accommodating her dietary requirements, we found the Java Café no longer offered diabetic cakes and the choice for diabetics in the Horizon was extremely limited. We always go one evening to the Sindhu Restaurant which serves fabulous Chinese food, pick the right night and you get a free bottle of house wine, all for £20 a head. The specialty restaurants were heavily promoted during the cruise to get passengers to part with their cash. The Epicurean Restaurant is now £18pp for afternoon tea and £28pp for dinner. The entertainment was varied with good shows from the Britannia Singers and visiting artists including The 4 Tunes, Steve V King (from the Drifters), John Clegg (impressionist), Gareth Oliver (ventriloquist), Claire Maiden, Nick Page (an appalling comedian), Paul Rack (The music of Eric Clapton), Tiptonic and Jane Middleton as Annie Lennox. All very enjoyable, except the so called comedian. You had to get to the Headliners Theatre at least half an hour before a show to get a seat. We only had one guest speaker on this cruise which is unusual as we have had several speakers on past cruises, more P&O cost cutting? The speaker was Sue Baic whose bag was dietry and nutrition to a healthy living. We did not attend any of the talks, too busy eating our way through the restaurants! The shops are open on sea days and in the evening when in port. They have stalls in the atrium virtually every day doing so called sales selling ornaments, bags, watches, perfumes etc. You can easily get carried away if you are not selective and careful. Our first port of call was Funchal, Madeira on Thursday 12th where we did the excursion taking the Cable Car up the mountain and coming down in the Wicker Toboggan Sled Ride, great fun. As we spent two days in Funchal we spent the second day site seeing in Funchal on foot. Next port of call was La Palma where we did an excursion to the Volcano and a Local Winery, all very enjoyable although we were not overwhelmed by the Canary Wine. Next was Tenerife. It was a Sunday and we did not do an excursion as we had been to Tenerife before so just wandered around the Santa Cruz and had a coffee as most of the shops were closed. Next was Gran Canaria which we had been to before so we did the excursion to the only Coffee Plantation in Europe. Fascinating to see coffee grown in a sheltered valley on the island. Next was Lanzarote where we did the Hidden Lanzarote excursion which took us to the old capital Tequise, then to an Aloe Vera farm, the seaside town of Niemes and finally a Cactus Garden. It made for a great day. Last we stopped at Lisbon on the way back. We have been here several times before so took the shuttle bus into the centre of town and did a bit of shopping, had a coffee and watched the world walk by. The weather was kind to us with sunny days and a temperature on 20C in Madeira and 21/22C in the Canary Islands. Lisbon was also sunny and 20C. The service from our cabin steward was excellent and all the staff were very helpful. The only fly in the ointment was they still only had one jigsaw available which was the same one that we had done whilst in the Caribbean. We asked that they get some more before the next cruise! So, we had a very relaxing and enjoyable cruise and would recommend the ship to those thinking of taking their first cruise as although it carries over 3500 passengers it does not feel like a large ship and never feels crowded. We very much like the ship and No! we had no problems with the lifts which only got very busy at the end of a show. The lack of a staircase with the central lifts did not seem to pose a problem. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
This was supposed to be a special cruise for our 60th wedding anniversary but it turned out to be very very disappointing, I realise that we are getting on a bit but we still like to have a good time and we certainly didn’t on this ship, ... Read More
This was supposed to be a special cruise for our 60th wedding anniversary but it turned out to be very very disappointing, I realise that we are getting on a bit but we still like to have a good time and we certainly didn’t on this ship, we have been on the Oriana before and should never gone again, we have cruised many times and I must say this was the worst by far. We experienced very rough seas and of coarse that’s not the fault of the ship, the crew were lovely and work very hard, as for the food it was very poor and the entertainment was third rate, I think whoever put it together thought anything was good enough for the elderly passengers, as for any dancing in the evenings it was okay if you were into old time dancing which we are not and if you liked to knit and natter or play bingo during the day then this was the cruise for you. The open dining was a feasco having to cue up for about an hour to get a table for two, I think there were a lot of disappointed people on this cruise and I know that we would never go with P&O again. Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
Had a great time food was good in all the restaurant's room was clean and comfortable our cabin stewardess was very attentive all ways helpfull kept the room spotless loved the ship Very good service from the staff all in all a ... Read More
Had a great time food was good in all the restaurant's room was clean and comfortable our cabin stewardess was very attentive all ways helpfull kept the room spotless loved the ship Very good service from the staff all in all a great cruise at a excellent price ports of call loved laPalma and Lisbon Lanzarote was warm just did a drop off excursion entertainment was ok in parts ventriloquist are not my cup of tea but dance troop were very good tend to do our Own thing in the day time ship was a bit rocky and did vibrate a bit not had that on other ships but got used to it she's a lovely ship would go on her again dinning was very good food was hot and tasty in both the main dinning room and self service glass house was a nice for a change of venue sizzling steak is all way good in there Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
I thought I would try an adults only trip. The contrast with the family ship Azura in the school holidays was delightful. I travelled solo and I definitely enjoyed an adults only ship. The efficiency and organization of the ship was ... Read More
I thought I would try an adults only trip. The contrast with the family ship Azura in the school holidays was delightful. I travelled solo and I definitely enjoyed an adults only ship. The efficiency and organization of the ship was excellent. With so many good points it was difficult to find any negatives. EMBARKATION – was excellent. It took about 30 minutes from the time of going through the outside door to entering my cabin. DISEMBARKATION – was also excellent, well organized and quick. I was outside the terminal building about 9.00 am. CABIN – mine was a pleasant cabin with an outside picture window, midships and fairly low which should have been good for rough seas. I felt sea sick for 2 days. The cabin space and storage was very adequate for a solo traveller. DINING – The food generally was good. The Buffet Restaurant was self-service. This was not large enough during busy times and during those times it was difficult to find somewhere to sit. The Oriental Restaurant, waiter service, was open in the evening and was a fixed time restaurant with 2 sittings. The back of the restaurant was noisy and vibrated. The other white table cloth restaurant, waiter service, was open to all with open dining for breakfast and lunch meals. The afternoon tea service there was excellent. There was also open dining in this restaurant in the evening (for selected diners?) Also there were 2 paid-for restaurants which I did not try. SPECIAL DIETS – Special diets appeared to be well catered for. Soya milk and soya spread were available. Other diets were catered for at the buffet breakfast. A vegetarian menu was available to order. Vegans might struggle. ENTERTAINMENT – the films, lectures and activities were excellent. There was a huge variety of activities to choose from. TRAVELLING SOLO – the morning coffee meetings, afternoon tea tables for solo travelers, and the morning schedule for solo travelers who wished to go ashore together was very good. HEALTH AND BEAUTY – The free health lecture programme is excellent. There is a gym and beauty salon. The gym induction period finished at 5.00 pm on the embarkation day. With the meal, seeing to cases, and the ship’s drill, I did not see this information until too late – after 5.00 pm on the induction day. Maybe this could be included on an introduction to the ship sheet or the gym induction could be the following day. (I did not notice if there was another induction period). GOING ASHORE. Passengers usually had the full morning and afternoon ashore which was fine. Ship’s shore excursions can be expensive. SAVING SUNBEDS – some sunbeds near the pool appeared to be ‘saved’ with blue towels preventing other people from using them. Perhaps a better system could be found. SNACKS IN CABIN – if one is travelling solo and is ill for a day or two this might be useful. The breakfast service in the cabin is excellent. I never saw any information about 24 hour snacks or food in the cabin which some cruise companies offer. TIPS can be added to the passengers statement or alternative arrangements can be made. SHOPS – shops are available for personal items, clothes etc. CONCLUSION – would I travel on the Oriana again – definitely yes – especially if there was a better pricing system for solo travelers who are usually charged about double compared to some other passengers. Apart from feeling sea-sick/ill for 2 days I enjoyed the cruise. It was amazingly well organized and efficient. The staff were charming, helpful and efficient. The Oriana is a very good ship for couples, adults and solo travelers and I would recommend it for a pleasant, interesting cruise. Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
Could not resist the Black Friday deal a great way to try P&O. Firstly though I must say I do feel for all those who had their 50 night cruise cancelled some of whom were on this one. The cruise exceeded my expectations. The cabin ... Read More
Could not resist the Black Friday deal a great way to try P&O. Firstly though I must say I do feel for all those who had their 50 night cruise cancelled some of whom were on this one. The cruise exceeded my expectations. The cabin was great and our steward Mateus was excellent. The entertainment crew were fantastic, we could all do with some of Georgie's energy!!!!! The food in both the buffet and Oriental restaurant was excellent. The Headliners put on several brilliant shows. Also enjoyed Manuel Matinez my sides ached after his second show in the Pacific Lounge, Peter Howarth and Walk Like A Man. Both Embarkation and Disembarkation went smoothly. Excursions were good value can highly recommend the Toboggan run in Madeira with the cable car would do this again. Holiday went far too quickly, Atlantic very very choppy weather not great but did not spoil one minute Cannot wait for my next trip which will be on Aurora in November then Arcadia in December. Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
DONT BELIEVE ALL THE NEGATIVE REVIEWS. We found the Oceana to be a little dated but understand she is due for a Re fit end of this month. The Plaza could do with an overhaul as we found it to be lacking in choice (unless you like ... Read More
DONT BELIEVE ALL THE NEGATIVE REVIEWS. We found the Oceana to be a little dated but understand she is due for a Re fit end of this month. The Plaza could do with an overhaul as we found it to be lacking in choice (unless you like Curry), repeatedly cold food which was supposed to be hot, OH! and the Roasts were always Vac Packed and lacking taste. Although we had read all the negative reviews before boarding and were a bit apprehensive, I have to admit it was one of the more relaxing cruises we have had. Big Negative though - Beware the "Metabolism and loosing weight" seminar unless you have money to waste. The assessment is £30 then they try stiff you £245 for a three month supply of Algae tablets which are supposed to cleanse your body. We googled this when we got back home and there is no convincing evidence to suggest the tablets help with weight loss. Apart from that - decent Cruise and we have booked to go on her again Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
This 12 night cruise is our longest to date. We normally head to Lanzarote for a week in December for a land based holiday but decided to take a cruise to see some of the other islands this time and also to enjoy the 6 sea days. ... Read More
This 12 night cruise is our longest to date. We normally head to Lanzarote for a week in December for a land based holiday but decided to take a cruise to see some of the other islands this time and also to enjoy the 6 sea days. Embarkation at Southampton Excellent service and within 45 minutes we were in our cabin and the luggage was already there. Cabin B749 is an aft balcony cabin on the end of the row so it has the wrap around balcony which is approx 10' square with ample room for chairs and tables. I loved having the wake to listen to. There is more noise when arriving and departing with the thrusters going, but this was not really of detriment to us. If you have one of the other aft cabins on B deck, other the far end opposite to us, you pretty much can only look straight out to sea without sticking your head right out over the rail. Our steward was Grace who is a lovely girl and looked after us well. Food We prefer to eat in the MDR for most of our meals and we found it to be to the previously good standards we've had on board. We also ate in Sindu, Epicurean, Glass House and Beach House and equally enjoyed those an the more attentive service and excellent choices. Service in MDR overall was also very good. Entertainment We really enjoyed all of the Headliners Shows and appreciate the dedication and hard work thy put in to the shows. Destination Dance was particularly good. We enjoyed Jenny Wiliams, crossover vocalist (classical / musical / pop) and also Paul Hughes (Buble / Sinatra / Darren). Roy Walker, comedian, was on board and gave two good entertainig and humorous shows. Tom Binns (hospital radio show) also gave two good shows, although the humour may offend some, but there was a warning in Horizon to be fair. We laughed along though. Ports of Call / Excursions Favourite was Madeira - I did my own thing and hubby went on the 4x4 tour which he thought was great. We then met up at the cable car and ascended to enjoy the great views. Definitely one place to head back to for a longer stay Tenerife - we did the flavours and history tour which was OK, but a bit disappointed as it was only about 9km from the port to the town of La Laguna and whilst we had a guide, you could get there yourself by taxi quite easily. We ended up at the opera house and some appetisers and drink which were very good and the hosts very welcoming. We did not get to go inside the venue, but had access to the external balcony Gran Canaria - we stayed in the port town of and ventured over for a walk along the beach which was very good - flat, promenade, plenty of bars etc. Buildings are all along it and not the most attractive though being 60s style. La Palma - lovely island and really interesting to visit the national park and head up to the caldera which was incredible - this was on the heart of la palma excursion Lisbon - been before so enjoyed a casual stroll around the narrow streets and enjoyed coffee an custard tart Ship Facilities / Activitis The ship is showing signs of wear and tear in places with worn carpet edges in places and chairs looking a bit grubby, so the refit in March will give it a needed lift, but overall the appearance is still very good, clean and attractive. I participated in the Ventura Vocalists having 6 sea day rehearsals and a performance to conclude with in the atrium which was well supported by the other passengers. This was great fun to be part of and was run by Jayson and Eiophe from the Headliners. The music director on board played piano, although to me he seemed very disengaged from the group and seemed to be just going through the motions both at rehearsals and performance, never once giving us a word of encouragement. Spa We had treatments as part of the 180 package we'd previously purchased and these were very good. Lily, assistant spa manager runs a very efficient spa and was very good with clients and showing us around the facilities. Captain Simon Terry was a very pleasant man and kept us updated regularly as to weather and anything of note as we went from port to port. There is plenty to do for most people on board if you choose to do them. Some people do complain but I think it is a case of what you make of it and we certainly enjoyed and appreciated what was on offer. It was lovely to have the chance to relax on board, although the weather on the sea days could have been better. There were children around, but they were all lovely and it was great to see them dressed up on the formal nights. Lots of people with mobility issues using wheelchairs and scooters and I have to say how much I admire their courage and determination to get on with things as at times access in the ports must be difficult. Also to the carer who assisted them - a great thing you are doing. We actually stayed on board for the next cruise N730 which was a 3 nighter to Bruges - a different experience entirely for which I shall write separate review! Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
At least half our cruises, more than 20, have been with Celebrity Cruises so that's our yardstick for our first P&O cruise. Very slick check in, best we have ever had without priority check in. We arrived 12:35 and were in our ... Read More
At least half our cruises, more than 20, have been with Celebrity Cruises so that's our yardstick for our first P&O cruise. Very slick check in, best we have ever had without priority check in. We arrived 12:35 and were in our cabin at 13:00. Luggage was there by the time we had a snack. Cabin a reasonable size, open fronted wardrobe sharing the access to the compact bathroom, no less than 40 wooden hangers! A single narrow cupboard for clothes and a couple of open fronted shelves. Two bedside tables with 2 draws each. Large flat screen TV. Balcony was economy, size less than a meter deep, just room for two upright chairs and a small table. Several power points with UK sockets. Kettle, tea, coffee and milk supplied in generous quantities. Despite being a large ship with 4,000 passengers there were plenty of comfy seats indoors - important as when we crossed the Bay of Biscay the deck was out of bounds. No shortage of sun beds unless you wanted to sit by the pools. A big plus for us was the lack of endless loud musak from singers who can't sing! Theatre holds just under 1,000 people, get there early if you really want to see the show, you can't see the stage from the seats at the back! Be warned the music is very loud. Main shows were very good. Food was reasonable and varied, staff very friendly and helpful. Dinner and breakfast waiter service was slow to very slow, not the waiters fault they have too many tables each. Speciality restaurants included the Epicurean at an eye watering £28 per head and the Beach House at £7.50 per head and then extra for several of the courses. We tried the Beach House, food was good except the sorbet which was frozen, took far too long. A lot of the decks did not allow transit around the ship without diversions to other decks and yes there was a lot of waiting for elevators. I missed a central staircase. Entertainment - usual deck games, bingo etc. No port or educational lectures. Internet was very expensive 65p per minute for casual browsing £39 per hour! Will we sail P and O again? Yes, better than some of the reviews implied. Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
we chose this cruise because we thought it would make a great change to sail to the Canary Islands instead of the med, our usual destination. We chose to sail with P & O having sailed on Britannia last year and absolutely loving her. ... Read More
we chose this cruise because we thought it would make a great change to sail to the Canary Islands instead of the med, our usual destination. We chose to sail with P & O having sailed on Britannia last year and absolutely loving her. Last year we holidayed with our daughter and grandson but this year we travelled as a couple. Because I have quite severe walking/disability issues we need to be near middle of ship for ease of getting about. Embarkation was quite smooth. Just as well because we had travelled down to Southampton, by coach from Co Durham which was an uncomfortable and tiring experience this year. Once at Southampton I had assisted boarding which is a lifesaver and I take my hat off to the people who provide this amazing service. Once we arrived in our cabin we immediately looked at each other with real disappointment, We had a superior deluxe cabin, but compared to same cabin on Britannia it looked so very shabby. Yes the balcony is bigger than the same one on Britannia but Ventura cabin looks in need of a refit and a good scrub. Bathroom is a good size but looks as though everything needs replacing. Really everything in our cabin needed to be spruced up, replaced or repaired. Sadly, this was the same right throughout ship. The worst aspect of the cruise, however, was the food we had freedom dining and ate mainly in the formal dining room, whilst, we only twice had to wait for a table with the famous 'buzzer', once seated we quickly found the food to be a huge disappointment. Quality of the food was very poor apart from breakfast which was very good. However, all of the staff on Ventura were all amazing, helpful, friendly and knowledgeable. We enjoyed the entertainment though, and thought prices of drinks were very reasonable. In conclusion the ship desperately needs a refit but can be very proud of staff. Would like to mention Edwin in Glasshouse who is a gem, smile to light up any room, and who served us with the best meal we had on Ventura which sadly we had to pay extra for because of it being a speciality restaurant Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
This was our second P&O cruise having previously sailed on Oceana. We have also sailed with Thomson and Celebrity. Embarkation was well organized: we had been allocated a time of 3pm but arrived two hours earlier as the traffic was ... Read More
This was our second P&O cruise having previously sailed on Oceana. We have also sailed with Thomson and Celebrity. Embarkation was well organized: we had been allocated a time of 3pm but arrived two hours earlier as the traffic was light. We were given a card and we settled down expecting a long wait. However, 30 minutes later we had boarded and were in our cabin. First impressions were mixed. The cabin is a reasonable size (we had C314, a balcony cabin on the port side, floor 10) but the so-called bathroom was a disappointment. It has a total area that is about the size of a phone box and this includes the shower, which had a rather dirty plastic shower curtain. Interestingly, this was replaced on the day we were disembarking! The room needs refurbishing; the carpet looked dirty and the whole room just looked run down. There is plenty of hanging space for clothes but apart from the bedside tables, no drawers. The balcony was a good size though, roughly 2.5 by 3.0 meters I would guess. We were freedom dining in the Cinnamon restaurant and I have to say that the food was as good as any I have had on a cruise. It perhaps lacked the finesse of Celebrity and endless green beans got a little repetitive but overall the food was very good. The buffet was awful as they usually are in my experience, just a fight every day to find a table at breakfast, which was the only meal we ate in there. We didn’t try any of the specialty restaurants, as the food was more than satisfactory in Cinnamon. This was in spite of constantly being given the hard sell everyday by the staff. The entertainment was excellent. The Headliners theatre group was superb, as were the Ventura entertainment team. However, it was a bit like a holiday camp up on the pool decks were you are bombarded by constant noise. Talking of the pools, we didn’t venture in, as they were full of children, including the so-called adult only pool. Also, children were constantly occupying the Jacuzzis, in spite of notices prominently displayed saying that under 16s were no allowed. This was the only time children were, for us, a problem. Apparently there were 740 children on board but they all seemed well behaved and there were no problems as far as I know. As for the rest of the ship, well, it is in need of a full refurbishment. The public areas are decidedly tacky and mostly very dark. It could be a lovely ship and probably was many years ago but it looks and feels very dated now. The itinerary was what we had signed up for so no real complaints. This was Madeira, La Palma, Gran Canaria, Lanzarote, Lisbon, Vigo and back to Southampton. My only grouch was that it took 3 long days to get to Madeira, an extra port could have been included to break this up. We heard a lot of people complaining about this. Many, many people removed or reduced their gratuities. We spoke to a lot of people over the 12 days and apart from one couple, everyone else had asked for gratuities to be removed. My only comment would be that within 2 hours of embarkation, I had been charged the full £144 in advance for service I had yet to receive. Service throughout the ship was on the whole efficient and cheerful although we did encounter some surly attitudes from some staff members but they were the minority. Finally, disembarkation was very well organized and we were able to leave the ship without a long wait or encountering any hassle. So all in all, an enjoyable cruise with some reservations regarding the décor and general state of the ship. I will cruise with P&O again, but not necessarily on Ventura. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
We chose this cruise because of the ports of call which where very good. Sailed from Southampton very efficient unfortunately gale force 8 around the Bay of Biscay so sea sick for 24hrs. On the Tuesday sun came out and all settled ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the ports of call which where very good. Sailed from Southampton very efficient unfortunately gale force 8 around the Bay of Biscay so sea sick for 24hrs. On the Tuesday sun came out and all settled down. The ship showed the film AP McCoy on the sea screen lots of moaning I thought it was very good. The ship was top heavy with age 70 plus and disabled but it did not bother us others it did . We had freedom dining and each evening sat with a different group general opinion for fist time cruisers with P & O not for them. The evening meals where very good and a good choice however breakfast not so much choice if you didn't want full English every day. The buffet restaurants which we avoided not so good poor choice even on fruit only cheap white or brown bread for sandwiches with just coleslaw on .once managed to find a brown roll with some poached salmon on. Same for cake and dessert poor. My husband called it the transport cafe . There was a grill for pizza or burgers on deck. The staff all worked very hard and ship was very clean. Reception was poor and it took four days to replace a shower head had to complain in writing in the end. Would we cruise with them again probably not back to Celebrity next year they have the edge on them . Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
We choose this cruise because it was a golden wedding anniversey and husbands 70 birthday.And last year was an annos horribilus for our family with to of the family being hit by the big C.Although ok now , it took its toll. Any way we ... Read More
We choose this cruise because it was a golden wedding anniversey and husbands 70 birthday.And last year was an annos horribilus for our family with to of the family being hit by the big C.Although ok now , it took its toll. Any way we arrived at Southampton with excitement and just glad to have reached this goal.We were very soon on board, and although the Ventura is definatly showing signs of wear, still had some places where she sparkled.Cabin A 627 deck 12. Was similar to the ship, ok but showing signs of wear, balcony with 2 chairs one foot rest and one small table.Plenty of clothes storage space and enough room for changing in.A very small shower, but adequete.The room attendant Sandesh, arrived to welcome us and show us round etc. Seemed very genuine and caring.We are not given to dressing up for meals, but do put on clean shirt trousers etc.So we opted really to use the buffet for our meals, plus we could dine when we wanted, which works for us.The food was adequete, if a bit sameish.There was no squash throughout the day, just tea or coffee. The entertainment was very good , a special word here for the onboard show team of young people who put on about 8 different shows, they put their heart and souls into each show.AMAZING****. Didnt rate the comedian very much, not my humour. Of course there were lots of other things going on round the ship, so we would float in and out where we wanted. Liked the small library and computor area, dear though, nice young lady managing area.the usuall mix of passengers and I heard 45 childen, didnt see much of them, shame like to see them enjoying themselves. Ports were good we have often been to Madiera, like it there a lot, plus we didnt realise but it was carnival time while we were there, as with another 3 visits.so that was a bonus. Ihad call to visit the ships doctor while onboard, with some sort of allergy on my face, which was sore swollen, needed cortizone cream, anyway I was impressed with the professional treatment from the senior nurse and doctor. Looking forward to next cruise, I probably sound like an old grump, but really it was good. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
Have been on many cruises but none that come anywhere near as bad as this one, food mostly cold or Luke warm,over cooked slop. staff wondered around clearing plates never once offered to fetch something for us,unless in port near ... Read More
Have been on many cruises but none that come anywhere near as bad as this one, food mostly cold or Luke warm,over cooked slop. staff wondered around clearing plates never once offered to fetch something for us,unless in port near impossible to find seating,evenings were a little better thanks to the people we met food was just as bad, wine £18 a bottle or. Near 6 pounds a glass,tried the speciality restaurant were ok nothing to write home about,never made it to afternoon teas so can't comment. sitting out in the sun by the pool which was empty on one of the hottest days we had, loud blaring music,one could hardly hear oneself think, we end going into the covered area for a little peace,considering the average age had to be 65/70 I couldn't understand why the latest music was blaring out. we are both counting the days till we get of,had one booked on Arcadia in may,needless to say cancelled, p&o have gone from bad to worse,over 2£ for an ice cream on deck, whereas most ships it's free, any way never again Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
Boarding smooth with minimum waiting at Southampton, Once on board quick wash and upto the buffet (Plaza) while luggage arrived. Had a ham salad which was fresh then a scone which was anything but nice - just a blob of baked dough and has ... Read More
Boarding smooth with minimum waiting at Southampton, Once on board quick wash and upto the buffet (Plaza) while luggage arrived. Had a ham salad which was fresh then a scone which was anything but nice - just a blob of baked dough and has not improved. Meals at the Ligurian (free time dining) have been of a mixed standard and waiting staff very helpful and pleasant ready to replace dishes not up to standard, tried the Cafe Jardin for dinner which was worth the extra £7.50 each - but lunch there (no charge) was a mistake the tuna baguette was stale and soggy the quiche had its bottom burnt to a point of being uneatable we made our thoughts known and retreated to the Plaza buffet. Our state room cabin Grade H8 balcony was a real disappointment, small cramped and worn with little storage space, we lived out of our cases. Bathroom dated and in urgent need of a make over, blocked shower cleared quickly. Bar areas worn with faded cushions, staff are friendly, drinks reasonably priced - g&t £5.25, whiskey £3-£3.95 Costa coffee £2.10ish Americana always flat and never a crema but cracked it by ordering double expresso with hot water separate, beer £3.50/£4.50 pint, bottle 500ml £3.85. Wine plenty choice between £16 and £22.50 per bottle. No service charges on bar bills. 5 days onboard now. Dined at The Beach Club Christmas Eve paid a supplement of £7.50 excellent food with some dishes requiring a further charge. Plenty of choirs singing in various parts of the ship. Cabin annoyingly small as the cruise progresses. Friday the 30th now been onboard 9nights. Ligurian (free time dinning)food not of good quality and repeated dishes often, lots of moans and growns from fellow dinners, we have resorted to eating in the The Beach House and the Cafe Jardin for the rest of the nights aboard both have supplement charges but we feel its better to pay the supplement and enjoy the food, Entertainment is probably the least entertaining of any cruise we have been on with one or two exceptions- String Idols and Pete Brew. Ports of Call were the usual Caneries Ports we never took any ships tours as we like to do our own thing most of the berths the Oceana used were the farthest away from the town- shuttle buses were not always forthcoming or for invalid passengers only, at La Palma it was ship to town only no return - well over a km walk with no shelter from the weather. New Years Eve at Madeira spent a pleasant day ashore by far the best port of call and the midnight party/shore fireworks watched by 4 other cruise ships. Internet charges £7.50 to £25 per 24hrs depending on intended usage, no in and out once activated use it or lose it. Navagation information is minimal other that the Captains daily progress report the cabin tv channel is unreadable with the stupidest map on any cruise ship we have been on, the map on deck 12 is just that a map and is not update.Come on PO we live in a digital world. Finally feel conned to have paid. £3049k each in July - so called advance booking for a HE cabin when others paid less than £1000 each for better larger cabins on last minute deals. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
My wife and I were hoping for a special Christmas so splashed out on a P&O Christmas and New Year cruise. In reality we the cruise proved to be dull, underwhelming and not so very good value for money. To be fair to P&O the public ... Read More
My wife and I were hoping for a special Christmas so splashed out on a P&O Christmas and New Year cruise. In reality we the cruise proved to be dull, underwhelming and not so very good value for money. To be fair to P&O the public areas of the ship were dressed for the festive season and the crew all donned santa hats. The food was up to P&O standards and overall the night time entertainment was good. But ! that's where it ended during the day and especially sea days the atmosphere was dismal in part because the average age of our fellow passengers was around 80 years old, most of whom occupied all of the seats in the atrium to either sleep or read books. Other seemed to form convoys of disability scooters, clogging up the lifts and causing mayhem in the dinning areas. There also appeared to be a distinct lack of Christmas cheer from the entertainments team, in fact on Christmas Day afternoon all but a handful of crew disappeared to there quarters, where from the noise level there Christmas party was the best gig on the ship, with fare paying passengers left to there own devices. Having had a not so good Christmas we looked forward to a fantastic New Years eave party in Maderia. P&O advertised a deck party starting at 10.00pm until late with the fireworks display at midnight. In fact the fireworks were spectacular unfortunately P&O provided only 20 tables each with 4 chairs to serve circa 2000 passengers ? Come on P&O you let your self down and sold your passenger short. Other than that we enjoyed the Canary Islands and a little winter sun on our backs. Overall the cruise was overpriced and a let down. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
This is our eighth cruise with P & O and our third Christmas and New year cruise with them. Although it pains me to say it,standards have fallen on Oceana,don't get me wrong,we still had a great time but little niggles are ... Read More
This is our eighth cruise with P & O and our third Christmas and New year cruise with them. Although it pains me to say it,standards have fallen on Oceana,don't get me wrong,we still had a great time but little niggles are starting to come through. We are fortunate enough to always either have a suite or a mini suite and enjoy the little extras that involves,so when we arrived and were told we weren't entitled to go into the priority lounge we (and others) were not impressed,long story short,after much discussion with port staff we eventually got through,then,once on the ship, were told we were not entitled to go into the champagne lunch,which we have always done in the past also.The woman at reception was very dismissive and more or less said it is what it is.We asked to speak to the priority manageress who then told us "yes you are entitled,there's just been a mix up" not a great start to our holiday,when you pay almost 9K for a holiday,you do not expect to be spoken to that way,or indeed whatever you've paid.We did receive a nice bottle of wine as an apology but that doesn't excuse rudeness by reception. Our cabin was lovely but again,standards not what they were and the cabin steward perhaps needs a little more pointers as how to clean properly,not that I'd ever complain as they do work so so hard,it was just little things,like mirrors not done and dust over the phones and sink not cleaned properly,nothing I couldn't live with.Also the overpowering smell of urine was disgusting in the bathroom,it was enough to make you gag. Dining,again,has gone downhill a tad,although my husband did enjoy his food,the veggie options always seemed to just be heated up and I had rather an upset tummy,so I switched from the separate veggie menu and just chose from the main menu instead,was ok but definitely not 5* dining.I cannot fault any of the waiting staff,they are absolutely brilliant and we had such a laugh with them.so it always baffles me when some reviewers say they are surly or ignore them etc,I have not once seen this,they are amazing. The ship itself is generally clean although the cleaners do tend to not dust everywhere,I even wrote the word "dirty" in some of the dust on the window sill in le club and also the champagne bar,tables rather grubby and dust there too but the ship apart from that is in good nick,we tried really hard to spot rust but didn't see any,so again,I'm not sure if some reviewers are reviewing the correct ship : / On the plus side,the ports were all great,apart from Agadier,where hardly anyone gets off but I don't think P & O are returning to north Africa in the foreseeable future.All the other ports are great to have a stroll through and Madeira is wonderful.The staff are as always an absolute delight,even though we haven't seen some of them in a year,they recognised us instantly,not sure if that is good or bad mind you. Can't comment on much of the entertainment as we don't go into shows,not our cup of tea.just wish P & O would organise some foot tapping bands for round the ship,it's either a pianist (who's ok) a guitaritst or some singer that wouldn't win a karaoke competition,they need good Irish or Scottish music that will have people clapping along,instead of all falling asleep. All in all a good holiday but not a great holiday,will try and stick to the larger ships in future I think,unless Oceana improves Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
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