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2 Quasar First-Time Cruisers Cruise Reviews

We had an incredible trip to the Galapagos on Quasar's MV Evolution. We received great service during all the pre-trip questions which helped me select the Evolution over other boat options that we considered. During the trip service ... Read More
We had an incredible trip to the Galapagos on Quasar's MV Evolution. We received great service during all the pre-trip questions which helped me select the Evolution over other boat options that we considered. During the trip service was great from the guides and all the crew. The guides really added to the trip experience and we particularly loved going with Boli. We had an exceptional group of fellow travelers that added to the experience. Spending time with them in between excursions up in the bar lounge area filled the trip with many memories. Although the boat holds 32 passengers, it was not filled this trip with only 18 people. We enjoyed the extra room but really there was enough space for 32 passengers. Overall the ship felt very roomy. The boat had recently undergone some renovations which were nice. All the common furniture looked very nice and were comfortable. They were putting on some finishing touches on the trip staining some areas up on the deck and rails. Everything went like clock work. Next days schedules were discussed in the nightly lectures and briefings and posted throughout the ship. We are early risers but they did play a morning wake up call music promptly per schedule. The day started with a hearty breakfast with a choice of eggs, omelets, various meat options, breads options, cheese plate, yogurt, granola, various fruits and hot drinks. After breakfast we would do our first landing of the day. Our boat was frequently the only one at the landing site and it was nice that they split the group into two with one going one direction and the other direction. It made the experience feel like you were with a really small group. After the morning landing, we came back to cool towels and a snack before changing clothes to go on a snorkeling trip. There were many certified divers among the group but all enjoyed the variety of marine life that we saw on these trips. Visibility is not as good as Caribbean waters but we were able to see a number of hammerheads, manta rays, reef sharks, turtles, sea lions, eagle rays, sting rays, and a wide variety of reef fish. When we returned from snorkeling, another cool towel and snack and then to the hot tub. Snorkeling equipment and wet suit were provided but we opted to bring our own snorkeling equipment. I would suggest you bring your own especially if you already have a mask that fits well. The routine was then to get out of swimsuits, shower, and change clothes to get ready for lunch. Lunch included soup,salads, cheeses, breads, usually fish and another protein such as chicken. There were always fruit and fresh vegetables and some starch as sides. Desserts were good and varied. At this time Steve would ask what we wanted for dinner with a choice between two entrees. We usually went for mixto which was a little of both entrees. Often during lunch, the boat was repositioned for a different location for the late afternoon hike. All this seamlessly happened. There was a quiet time where we would spend time talking about the morning experience or some people went to their cabins to nap. There were a couple of afternoons that we had the option to kayak. That was really fun and the equipment was good. In the evening, there was a lecture on various topics related to the Galapagos followed by a quick preview of tomorrows activities and schedules. Dinner was served around 7:30 and most of the time was a soup followed by a pre-plated entrée ordered earlier. Some of the dinners included filet mignon, shrimp, large prawns, salmon, tuna, pork, various chicken dishes, ribs, etc. Vegetables were fresh. You would never go hungry. Desserts were varied in sometime included home made ice cream that was really good. After dinner, we frequently congregated on the bar lounge area but some evenings when the sky was clear we went up front to star gaze. The crew did an excellent job throughout the trip. From the panga drivers, to the people who helped everyone off and on the ship, the chef and servers, the hotel director, the cleaning staff and doctor. It was nice having a Doctor on board. We were fortunate not to need her service but people who did need her rave about her. I know there were a number of crew who we never saw because they were responsible for running the ship. Everything worked and the trip seemed very smooth from our perspective. We had cabin D3 which I selected for its location. I was worried about being sea sick so I wanted to be in a low part of the boat near the middle. I was happy with how little the room moved about even when people were complaining on upper decks about how things fell off tables when we hit rougher water. You couldn't hear much engine noise and normally I slept through the anchor going up but you could hear the anchor going down. Overall the weather was warm, in the 80s. A couple of the evening walks were pretty hot. Although there was an El Nino, we only had rain one day and unfortunately it was the day to visit the tortoise preserve in the Highlands of Santa Cruz. I would have liked to spend more time walking around but it was pouring rain. El Nino had not impacted the wildlife too much yet. However on one walk the guide mentioned the absence of a large population of marine iguanas and that ones that were there were very skinny. This trip had so many wonderful memories. Besides all the special moments seeing the wildlife up so close, there were a few things that also stood out. This trip was my birthday present. I was surprised with a beautiful and delicious birthday cake brought to me by the captain with the crew singing. A few of us were early risers and one morning we were in very calm waters and one of the group asked the first mate if we could swim around the boat for exercise. He said yes so we ran and switched into swim suites. I grabbed my mask and snorkel so I could see better and then started swimming laps around the boat. It was a fun experience and I will always regret not grabbing my Gopro. As I was swimming I saw a sea lion swimming around below. Later the sea lion popped up within 6 feet with a big fish in its mouth. Wish I had that on film. One of our guides Boli put together a souvenir video for us about our trip if you want to see more about what it is like to be on the MV Evolution. https://youtu.be/0QINMJFLAE4 Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
I can't say enough about our Galapagos cruise onboard M/V EVOLUTION. We went on a 7 night, 8 day cruise in January 2016. My husband and I are younger (early 30's) and we were definitely on the younger end of the crowd, but ... Read More
I can't say enough about our Galapagos cruise onboard M/V EVOLUTION. We went on a 7 night, 8 day cruise in January 2016. My husband and I are younger (early 30's) and we were definitely on the younger end of the crowd, but everyone was incredibly interesting and they were all active. Mostly American, with one Norwegian couple, and a British/Romanian couple. Bottom line, we loved the type of people that M/V EVOLUTION seems to appeal to. The ship is beautiful! Recently restored and perfect for the Galapagos. It's intimate without feeling crowded, and there are plenty of spaces to be outdoors, but also in the shade. The dining areas (both indoor and outdoor) were roomy, and the Jacuzzi/sun area was a really nice addition to the ship. Our cabin, D3, on the bottom level, was everything we needed. Big bed, plenty of storage, and the bathroom was nice. Water pressure was good and it was hot. The crew did an excellent job at making everyone feel at home and attending to their needs. The one thing I was really impressed by was how crew members would pitch in if they saw something that needed to be done, even if it wasn't in their job description. One day, the Captain was the one who washed off our feet as we returned from land. He also gave my husband and I, both in the US Navy, a personal tour of the bridge, which was really appreciated. The food/bar was wonderful. Food was fresh, lots of variety, and they served homemade dessert at every meal. Bar prices were reasonable and there was a happy hour period every evening before that night's briefing and dinner. Our naturalist guides made the trip. Their level of knowledge was unprecedented. I was so impressed by their technical command of the English language, as well as their knowledge of the Galapagos. This is definitely one of the most important things to consider when picking a Galapagos cruise. Everything on the ship ran like clockwork thanks to the guides, the crew, and the Cruise Director. It was the perfect amount of activity versus downtime. The scheduled activities were varied enough that you never got bored and the Northwestern itinerary was perfect. We got to see a good overview of the islands. Overall, I can't recommend M/V EVOLUTION/Quasar Expeditions more. They provide a tremendous experience at a reasonable cost (compared to other ships). You won't regret it! Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
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