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196 Cuba Senior Cruise Reviews

We chose this cruise due to the stopover in Havana, which, although not the fault of MSC, was extremely disappointing. We are from the UK and only received notification of this a few days before we were due to leave. The pathetic $400 ... Read More
We chose this cruise due to the stopover in Havana, which, although not the fault of MSC, was extremely disappointing. We are from the UK and only received notification of this a few days before we were due to leave. The pathetic $400 OBC no way compensated for the dreadful ports which we replaced Havana. This cruise was priced higher than the regular Islands and Costa Maya and Roatan are both resorts we have visited many times before. Having booked and paid for flights for hotels pre and post cruise we could not cancel without suffering huge penalties. However, we decided to make the best of it. Unfortunately, it was very difficult to do so due to the general attitude and culture on the ship. I was horrified by the cruise drill which was the most badly organised and shortest I have ever attended (on 40 plus cruises)! As a vegetarian I often have problems aboard US ships but this took some beating! All the food arrived lukewarm and best and we experienced long wait times. I don't think this was the fault of the staff , simply that there were just too few of them. On the second night I realised every vegetarian dish was Indian food. I do love Asian food but not everyday! I was told that was the menu that they changed for the US based cruises. One of the Restaurant Managers, whose name I won't mention on here but probably should, was bustling around doing absolutely nothing. He said he would take personal care of my food and proudly presented me with a place of overcooked vegetables with a spoonful of brown rice. I asked if I could have ravioli the following day, it's an Italian ship after all, this arrived overcooked dry and with no sauce. I couldn't eat it. This restaurant manager starting getting stroppy with me and I had to tell him to change his attitude as it wasn't appropriate. The good thing about this cruise that it was only for a week! I strongly urge readers of this to look at other options before booking this cruise line We will NEVER sail with MSC again. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
Port of Tampa was very easy port to get into and park. We had Priority Boarding went great on the ship and eating lunch in 10 min. Carnival Paradise is a smaller ship but has all the upgrades and easy to get around lines were very ... Read More
Port of Tampa was very easy port to get into and park. We had Priority Boarding went great on the ship and eating lunch in 10 min. Carnival Paradise is a smaller ship but has all the upgrades and easy to get around lines were very short every time. The food was the best that we have had on our last few cruises, it was good very good. The staff was very efficient and the ship was always clean and well maintained. Had an elevator go out but was fixed in one day. The only complaint we had was the same as all our resent cruises. Carnival need to be able to figure out the Dance Club. Either the club was not open or the music was for young people all the time. I would think that the cruise line could look at the age of the cruisers and play music that we can relate to. We understand playing music to all age group. We are smokers and this club is one of the three areas on the ship we can smoke but we either run into a locked door or the music is not something we like, and the DJ will not play music on request at all, if he does not like what you are asking for. Over all we had a great cruise and always recommend Carnival Cruise line to our friends Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
This was our 46th cruise and we are Diamond members. Allow me to begin this revie with The pros: The service was the best of any cruise ship we have ever been on. The staff was eager to please. The production shows were terrific. ... Read More
This was our 46th cruise and we are Diamond members. Allow me to begin this revie with The pros: The service was the best of any cruise ship we have ever been on. The staff was eager to please. The production shows were terrific. Very professionally done and entertaining. The ship was in good shape considering the fact that it is almost 30 years old. The cons: There was a sewerage smell the entire five days on the ship. The food in the buffet was just plain BAD. Same food every day, very limited selection and it was not tasty. Food in the main dining room was just OK. Our outside cabin was more like a closet. When getting off the bed, we had to walk sideways. No ref ridge in cabin. Very little drawer space. We found the drinks in the Schooner bar to be watered down. Much better drinks when ordered in main dining room. Our waiter Milton and Head waiter Nick were excellent. the embarkation and debarkation was very fast and orderly. The embargo on Cuba began while we were docked in Havana. We left the following day and learned that we were the last ship to leave Cuba. The country itself was run down as the communist government owned everything. We learned that they pay Medical Doctors $53 per week so most of them have to hold additional part time jobs. Our tour guide was an engineer with a Doctorate degree but claimed she made more money as a tour guide because of the tips. I would normally rate this ship as 3 stars, but because of the smell, I cannot rate it better than 2 stars Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
We chose this cruise because it was a good deal for the itinerary. Key West is one of our favorite ports and we had never been to Cuba. We knew the ship was older and we did see signs of wear. The cabin was small but we did not spend ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it was a good deal for the itinerary. Key West is one of our favorite ports and we had never been to Cuba. We knew the ship was older and we did see signs of wear. The cabin was small but we did not spend much time in it. We food was good. We ate in the dining room whenever we could. It was quieter than the Windjammer. We had the early seating in the dining room. Our waiter and assistant waitress were attentive. We arrived in Fort Lauderdale the day before the cruise so we were able to arrive at the port close to 11 a.m. Embarking was fast. We were in the Windjammer before noon. The first day was at sea. We took part in trivia and other daytime activities. There were enough activities to keep us busy all day. We did go to the shows every evening. They included a comedian, juggler, and the on board troupe. The crew members and staff we interacted with where all helpful and friendly. We explored Key West on our own. It is a very walk-able port. In Havanna, we booked a private six hour excursion. Because we were the only two people in the car, we were able to personalize the tour to include what we wanted to see. The second day we did a free walking food tour. Both excursions were very interesting and allowed us a good insight into the lives of the Cuban people. Disembarking was very easy and went fairly quickly. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Chose this cruise because it was our first time cruising and wanted to see if we liked it. The overall ship experience was better than I thought. Lineups to board/off board were well managed. Lineups for food or drinks were also very ... Read More
Chose this cruise because it was our first time cruising and wanted to see if we liked it. The overall ship experience was better than I thought. Lineups to board/off board were well managed. Lineups for food or drinks were also very limited. They had a good staff ratio. Our interior room was also very nice. Plenty of room. It was on 10th floor, good location to get to dining & pool area. Our biggest disappointment however was that the Bahama island stop was cancelled due to strong winds. It was actually only about 20 to 30 knots and slight swells but because of the tender system they were concerned for customer safety. THis is not the first time they cancelled this and for a trip with only 2 stops this was very disappointing. They need to find a way to offset this but offering a plan B itinerary if they know winds will be an issue... or find a way to build a dock. If you like sea days then no big deal. But we are active people and don't particularly like sitting around a pool. The food & liquor was good quality. Entertainment was good quality too... much better than all inclusive Mexican resorts! Very professional. Had a comedian for 2 nights. Havana stop went smoothy. We are Canadian and didnt bother with the scare tactic of having to buy a shore excursion from NCL. We spoke to an American who also did her own thing- and it was quite fine. Don't let the boat scare you into one of their pricey trips. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Wife and I have been on 10 or 15 NCL cruises and we liked them all except this one. Food was not up to par. The shows were poor. The cruise director was poor but the assistant cruise director was excellent. The piano bars were very ... Read More
Wife and I have been on 10 or 15 NCL cruises and we liked them all except this one. Food was not up to par. The shows were poor. The cruise director was poor but the assistant cruise director was excellent. The piano bars were very good. Cabin was small but OK. Room Stewart was terrible. He never vacuumed the carpet for the entire four day cruise. The waiters were very good. NCL never again. Sorry. The good news is that it its a short ship so there is less walking and less crowds. Pools were alway crowded. we did manage to get into a hot tub once. Food in he cafe was not what we are accustomed to on cruise ships. Next time we will choose another line. Free drinks were a real plus however we do not drink. It was a pleasure not to be hassled to buy drinks. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Chance to visit Cuba and feel safe about it. We just took the 5 night cruise to Cuba on the Royal Caribbean Empress of the Seas. I had read many of the reviews from past passengers and had a view of an old run down ship. This was our 20th ... Read More
Chance to visit Cuba and feel safe about it. We just took the 5 night cruise to Cuba on the Royal Caribbean Empress of the Seas. I had read many of the reviews from past passengers and had a view of an old run down ship. This was our 20th cruise but the 1st with Royal Caribbean and based on the reviews was not expecting much. This ship is old and small but really a nice ship. It is well maintained and good looking inside and out. The staff was wonderful and some of the friendliest of any ship we have been on. Our room steward Ike was the best we have ever had. The food and selection in the dining room was very good and some of the best compared to other shops we have sailed. Our waiter Leonard was fantastic. The buffet for breakfast was typical and good. But, the buffet for lunch was the disappointment when it came to food. Selection was small and mediocre to bad. On other ships we have been on, they have a grill for burgers and hot dogs that are quite good. This ship just served them from pans on the buffet and were not good. Other reviews made it sound like the seating in the buffet was tight and hard to find a seat. We did not encounter this. Activities were the usual trivia and games that were handled well. Shows were good. Especially the Lionel Richie cover singer Derik Floyd. Casino was small but not crowded. Several tables and a good variety of slots. Cocktails and drinks on the ship seemed more expensive than other shops we have been on. $8 for a beer plus tax and gratuity made it almost $10. Frozen drinks were typically $15. Maybe all cruise lines are like this now but 9 months earlier we paid about 6 for a beer and $10 for a frozen drink. We visited Cienfuegos and took a tour with Royal that was a typical excursion. Visited a fort, had lunch in a beautiful newer hotel, visited the city center square with several historic buildings. Not sure what we expected but reminded of somewhere in Mexico like Mazatlan. In Havana we did another Royal excursion. Again, not sure what I expected but the tour was fine but Havana reminded us of a post war war zone. The buildings are in total disrepair and look abandoned but yet people live in these buildings. Lines of people at bus stops. Lines to get into the grocery stores. Very sad and sorrowful. All in all, we really enjoyed our cruise and learned about Cuba. Encourage others to go. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
A group of us wanted to experience Cuba and found a good value on the Majesty of the Seas. We had no trouble getting on the ship. We arrived around 1pm, after parking at the very convenient Park and Go and taking the shuttle over. It only ... Read More
A group of us wanted to experience Cuba and found a good value on the Majesty of the Seas. We had no trouble getting on the ship. We arrived around 1pm, after parking at the very convenient Park and Go and taking the shuttle over. It only took about 30 minutes to get on board once we were dropped off. All meals, from the dining to the Windjammer buffets were varied and enjoyable. Servers were friendly and helpful. We asked for a larger table to accommodate 2 additional friends and the manager was very helpful and made it happen. The entertainment was enjoyable. While not a huge variety, the shopping was okay. Our cabin attendant on Deck 2 was fantastic, always smiling and friendly - very personable. While the ship is older and smaller, it fit our needs fine and was easy to navigate. We just enjoyed the getaway with good friends and good service! We took the bus tour in Cuba and it was very informative. It didn't last the full 6 hours, but we had the chance to walk the market and shop on the way back to the ship. The market was repetitive with items sold and the booth owners really push their items, but you get used to it as you walk through. We stopped at a bar/restaurant on the way back to the ship and enjoyed a cold Cuban beer. In Cozumel, we took a taxi into town for $16 for the group and walked back. It was quite a walk, but we had a lovely view along the water, and it gave us a chance to walk off some the food we had eaten on the ship! There is a good variety of shopping there if you are into that, and cheap deals on beer and free shots of tequila. All in all, a great cruise! Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We are Diamond members on RCCL and have been on the Majesty four times. Time has taken it's toll as the ship "celebrated" it's 27th birthday during our cruise. Our inside cabin was tiny but it's been a long time ... Read More
We are Diamond members on RCCL and have been on the Majesty four times. Time has taken it's toll as the ship "celebrated" it's 27th birthday during our cruise. Our inside cabin was tiny but it's been a long time since we had an inside cabin. I just know insides on the larger ships are noticeably larger. We loved the food for dinner and our wait staff..the real highlight of the ship. Food in the Windjammer was up and down. The burgers, hot dogs, scrambled eggs and sausages were luke warm at best. The seats on the sides in the theater were worn and not comfortable and the drink holders did not accommodate the glasses..so you had to hold your drink the entire time. The hallways and public areas need some serious renovation. The captain even said the Majesty (and the Empress) might have been sold if it wasn't for their ability to fit into the Cuban ports. This was our last cruise on the Majesty. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
Cuba and Key West ports from Port Canaveral. Very organized embarkation and disembarkation. Loved seeing Havana. We did our own tour witha private tour group and was very interesting and informative. Key West was great to see as well. ... Read More
Cuba and Key West ports from Port Canaveral. Very organized embarkation and disembarkation. Loved seeing Havana. We did our own tour witha private tour group and was very interesting and informative. Key West was great to see as well. We did the Trolley Tour through NCL to get an overview of the Key and then after, walked around on our own. We stayed in the Deck 6a cabins and was very quiet and sufficiently spacious and comfortable for 2 people with adequate storage. The staff were particularly attentive. Any issue was addressed immediately and with follow-up. They seemed to go above and beyond to make sure guests were enjoying their cruise. The open bar was great and there was plenty of staff available to serve. We have cruised Royal Carribean, Holland America and Celebrity and I would have to say that the service on the NCL SUN was outstanding. Nicely renovated ship too. The entertainment was also very good. Enjoyed the comedian and the big dance show, karaoke, as well as the numerous musical venues. Overall very pleased!! Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
We have cruised with HAL for 10 years and are 4 star mariners, did 2 cruises on Veendam starting March 3 to April 6th 2019. Embarkation long, tedious and very hot no assistance from HAL some very sick elderly people made to stand in heat ... Read More
We have cruised with HAL for 10 years and are 4 star mariners, did 2 cruises on Veendam starting March 3 to April 6th 2019. Embarkation long, tedious and very hot no assistance from HAL some very sick elderly people made to stand in heat for hours. Cabins poorly serviced, beds lumpy and hard. Advised of food allergy well in advance of cruise very poor choices, all meals and menu in Dining poor, meals served Luke warm to cold and not together with partner. Veendam Singers and Dancers excellent other entertainment poor to average. Ports good Shore Excursions ok. Disembarkation disgusting, had tour and airport booked, colour and number we were due to leave at 8.00 am, but kept telling us, no bus hasn’t arrived, 3-1/2 hours later we were all still waiting told tour was cancelled Staff member in charge returned to ship and left us all outside some sitting on limited seating the rest standing waiting for a bus to maybe come for us. Hoping HAL has the common decency to take care of airport transfer for all disappointed passengers looking forward to tour, we of FLL Everglades which we will now never see. Lastly emphasise Kitchen staff and Head Chef Orly, who should be responsible, all the time have let the Company down inexcusably Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
This was a great short cruise with a day and a half in Cuba and a full day at NCL's private Island, Great Stirrup Cay. Open Bar is included in the price of the cruise.The ship is older but had been recently refurbished. While it is ... Read More
This was a great short cruise with a day and a half in Cuba and a full day at NCL's private Island, Great Stirrup Cay. Open Bar is included in the price of the cruise.The ship is older but had been recently refurbished. While it is not as modern as some of the newer ships, it maintains an elegant decor that some of the newer streamlined ships do not have. The food was good and the buffet was well organized. The out side eating area in Garden Cafe was a plus. Excursions were good and provided a wide exposure to Cuba. As the ship was in port overnight ,there were night club and cabaret excursions. Great Stirrup Cay was recently renovated and was beautiful . We reserved a small cabana which was close to the beach. Service was excellent. Beach was beautiful. NCL is in the process of building a zip line going across the island. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Wanted to see Cuba and really enjoyed this circumnavigation tour versus a traditional land tour. The Peal Mist is a small, intimate ship that has top-notch staff and service. It is not a luxury cruise ship and compares to the similarly ... Read More
Wanted to see Cuba and really enjoyed this circumnavigation tour versus a traditional land tour. The Peal Mist is a small, intimate ship that has top-notch staff and service. It is not a luxury cruise ship and compares to the similarly intimate ships used on European river cruises. With fewer than 200 guests on board, I had the chance to meet almost everyone and really enjoyed my fellow travelers. The food was good with plenty of selections, the cabin was larger than expected and very comfortable, the staff was outstanding, the entertainment was lightweight and fun, the lecturers were informative and interesting, the tours were varied and well organized. Please note, this is NOT a value cruise. It is pricey when comparing to large cruise ships, but everything is included and the intimacy and attention to detail by the organization and staff is well worth the price paid. Everything about this cruise exceeded my expectations but I must re-emphasize that you are paying for the intimate travel experience versus luxury. I highly recommend this cruise for individuals aged 50+ but do not believe it is well suited for children or young adults. A+++ Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
We decided on this cruise as a sudden addition to our bucket list - Havana (Cuba), St Marteen, Antigua, Madera - all in one sweep. Getting through Havana airport was an exceptional experience and one not to be glamorised in any way. We ... Read More
We decided on this cruise as a sudden addition to our bucket list - Havana (Cuba), St Marteen, Antigua, Madera - all in one sweep. Getting through Havana airport was an exceptional experience and one not to be glamorised in any way. We arrived at the ship quite late went through the obligatory photograph, not much in the way of a welcome, collected our cards then straight to our cabin and bed. Next day in Havana was pretty good - we did our own thing, a morning and afternoon tour is separate old American cars for a lot less than the ship organised tour. We then spent a day at sea before arriving in St Marteen, again our own thing - a short walk into town then a bus to Maho beach where we were delighted to lots of low flying landing aircraft and got severely sandblasted by a big 757 taking off, culminating in a dip in the Caribbean sea before another bus ride back to town and a walk around the shops. Off to Antigua, it was Sunday and everything was closed so really a wasted day, all that was on offer was a taxi tour around the island. Now 6 days to cross the Atlantic, when the weather was good we could sun bathe and swim but as we sneaked further north the weather changed and we were forced to stay inside with limited options on suitable activities. At a certain time during the day there was only one internal bar open for the serving of coffee and naturally it was full. Funchal was next and not much to say here but a Sunday and not much open, then off to Malaga and some terrible weather through the Straight of Gibraltar with very high seas and extremely strong wind rendering damage to the ship and meaning we arrived late, then again some very high winds onward to Alicante again arriving late. To be fair the ship handled the rough weather well and was relatively smooth. The disembarkation at Alicante was an absolute disaster. We were told to gather in the theatre and consequently only received instructions in German, I checked the queue it was moving and getting shorter so without waiting for whatever non information was to be forthcoming decided to join the queue and get off the ship. As we had a balcony "Fantastica" cabin we were allocated the L'Approda restaurant. The menu was quite restricted and indeed required us to order McDonalds style chips every night. We were offer an option of a backed potato but only if ordered the previous evening - when it arrived it was just about cooked, not soft and fluffy or hard and inedible but certainly not fully cooked, similar can be said of a chicken kiev, only just cooked, not totally as would be expected with chicken. There were complaints made by other diners to the Maitre'd about the limited menu which was basically met with a shoulder shrug. The table waiting staff were very very attentive and friendly, I cannot say a bad word about them. We were on a drinks package thankfully. The printed cost of a "Gin and Tonic was 6€, this was the price charged in some bars, inothere the charge was for a 'Gordons' @ 6.50€ plus tonic???. On an occasion I ordered a @Vodka Martini and my wife a Bellini, the waiter returned with a Martini and advised that Bellini's were not available?? I returned my drink and my wife advised him that Bellini's were available as a cocktail, he returned with the Bellini and a vodka and water - agh, third attempt say me receiving a Morgans and coke???? - it was now so late I had lost the will and went to bed. I had little reason to approach the reception desk - thankfully - when I did to advise them of a potential medical problem I was met with an "I don't care" shoulder shrug. When it came to closing my credit card I was advised to return to the desk no less than three times. so not at all impressed with the unfriendly reception staff. The entertainment team worked very hard to keep guests amuse and some of the evening antics in the Piazza di Spagna were hilarious, This bar needed more staff to deal with the number of revellers as at times it was very difficult to get a drink.The theatre shows were of a high standard but way to high brow and classical themed, there were a few more light hearted entertaining evenings and the contortionists were incredible. A cruise once done not to be repeated, a class of ship that I shall avoid in future. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
This was our first non mega ship cruise. We usually go on the new ships the smallest was the Disney Dream .Having sailed around Cuba so many times and seeing the lights in the distance. This was our chance to visit. To compare is not ... Read More
This was our first non mega ship cruise. We usually go on the new ships the smallest was the Disney Dream .Having sailed around Cuba so many times and seeing the lights in the distance. This was our chance to visit. To compare is not easy. I think it’s where you are in life and what your looking for. If you want a nice peaceful cruise with a crew who really is happy to take care of you.If you like tea in the afternoon and cocktails before dinner they have it. Cocktails and a vey good piano player with fellow cruisers is quite nice. They had a show one night and it was really good. They sang and danced their hearts out. The costumes were also notable. The Cabins... We had a balcony room and it was the usual. The bathroom was fine and we are not small people and the shower was not an issue. They are all small, on this ship they are very clean.. When they do you room the bathroom gets sanitized when they do your room AM and PM. I liked that and there were no issues.The rooms have quite bit of storage built ins and a closet. Food. We never ate sit down. We liked the Buffet and liked sitting in the back outside.They still have great service and white table cloths The food was good and lots of choices.Everything is nicely displayed.and they have servers to help you. Once again everything is about keeping things clean and you happy. I hate people who Double dip ect this was not happening. You could have as much as you wanted with your clean plate. ..Poolside eating.. They have a nice menu of the usual plus salad, nachos ect . You order they bring it to you.It’s very good and very nice to be taken care of. They also have Steak ect at night and the tables are all done up. Room Service. Added treat Everything is so good and great portions. They have both Gelato and ice cream machines and non sugared is a plus.The ship is quiet and attracts the older cruiser who appreciates good service, and good food. The crew loves them and the feeling is mutual Some people we spoke to had been on more than 5 cruises. It was nice to relax and just enjoy ourselves To be taken care of in the style that seems to be forgotten Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Went on this cruise for several reasons, first cruise,never been to Key West and Cuba and travel with friends. For some reason Key West was changed to Grand Cayman, not happy. Once onboard the staff at every step of cruise did all they ... Read More
Went on this cruise for several reasons, first cruise,never been to Key West and Cuba and travel with friends. For some reason Key West was changed to Grand Cayman, not happy. Once onboard the staff at every step of cruise did all they could to make you feel comfortable. They were knowledgeable and helpful. The ship is old and showed it's age. There was constant maintenance being done such as painting,replacing windows and repairing plumbing issues in bathrooms. By the way bathrooms were smelling like urine. The ice cream machines were constantly breaking down and some became inoperable. The pool did not open until the second day and the whirlpool after first day did not open any more. The entertainment was good to great as it was diversified. Something for everyone. The positive side of sailing on a small ship was the opportunity to meet new folks. Will cruise again but definitely not on Empress of The Seas. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Wanted to try Viking Ocean and Cuba was on my list. Had been on Viking River Cruise so was curious about the Ocean Cruises. The look and feel if the ocean ship was similar to the River but bigger. Also the inclusion of the Thermal Spa ... Read More
Wanted to try Viking Ocean and Cuba was on my list. Had been on Viking River Cruise so was curious about the Ocean Cruises. The look and feel if the ocean ship was similar to the River but bigger. Also the inclusion of the Thermal Spa area which included the sauna, steam, snow room, cold pool and thermal pool with heated lounges chairs was an added bonus as there is not a charge to enter and use the Thermal spa like other cruise lines. The fitness center was well equipped as well. The pools were nice and nothin seemed crowed - not sure the ship was at 100% capacity. They had a nice smoking area on the top deck, which had plenty of seating and was not near any major public area such as the pools or dining areas. The ship was clean and the crew were in constant maintenance mode during the cruise. The staff were wonderful and we managed to have a few waiters that were special in that they remembered us and knew what we drank and were attentive, of course a little tip didn't hurt but was well deserved. The entertainment could be a little more varied especially in the main pool area to include so Top 40 tunes for some of the younger crowd, I had expected some latin music since this was a Cuba and Caribbean Cruise but none. Minus a casino more activities maybe would have been nice other than card and board games. Overall a very relaxing cruise even though we were unable to make our stop in Santiago Cuba due to weather. I booked another cruise while on board so overall pleased with the experience. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
The first thing to say is that we had a great cruise and would recommend Azamara Journey. The staff members were all friendly helpful and efficient and it seems a very happy ship. It is worth noting that some staff members had been on ... Read More
The first thing to say is that we had a great cruise and would recommend Azamara Journey. The staff members were all friendly helpful and efficient and it seems a very happy ship. It is worth noting that some staff members had been on board for many years and seem loyal to the brand. The ship in general, with the exception of the Discoveries Restaurant at Dinner time, did not seem too crowded. Discoveries could be noisy but the food and service remained excellent. The food in general was a high standard in all restaurants but we found that the ambiance of the Specialty Restaurants along with the high quality of gourmet food and service gave us a refuge and a quiet place to dine. Both Prime C and Aqalina had their own menu which remained the same throughout the cruise but were supplemented by Chefs Specials each evening. Suite guests were invited to a special ‘Best of the Best’ dinner which was an exceptional evening The complementary wines were a reasonable standard, particularly the white wines and there was an adequate selection of included drinks at the bars. The internet is well below the standard expected of Azamara in that when and if you can connect it is slow and tends to drop out. The Suites are given 235 minutes but the package otherwise is expensive and difficult to justify. Our impression was that the decor was dull throughout most of the ship, the exception being the Drawing Room/Library which is very colourful & a very pleasant place to sit. The Forward lounge was another excellent space to relax and enjoy friendly waiter service. We booked private tours of Havana, Vinales, Cienfuegos and Trinidad but decided to use the ships shore excursion for Santiago de Cuba as the ship was due to sail at 15.00. Sadly the latter, a Panoramic tour in Santiago was very poor and a huge disappointment. This was one of the worst tours we have ever taken; firstly we could not hear the guide, Lucia above the traffic in town and she did not have a microphone to help her. Secondly we were not aware that the bus would not stop to see the Revolution Square etc - we drove slowly past the places of interest rather than being allowed time to see them close up. If this is the intention then it should be made clear in the tour description. Finally, we signed up for a tour without a lunch stop (who needs lunch when you are fed so well on board ship) but were in any case taken to a poor quality lunch despite protests from most of the group. We felt this was a waste of time that might otherwise have been enjoyed at the monuments. More importantly, it turned out to be a waste of food as most of the group did not eat much and lots of food was returned untouched. When there is a shortage of food in Cuba and the locals endure rationing, this was also embarrassing for us and our companions. A very comfortable way to see Cuba on Azamara Journey. Worth Knowing: Immigration: Be very careful filling out the Cuban visa which costs US$ 75 and is issued as you embark. The check in agent said any mistakes would mean you having to buy another visa as a cost of US$ 75. The Visa is good for all ports in Cuba. The first time ashore in Havana the Immigration line was long & generally slow. On subsequent days off the ship, it was a quick wave through after a very casual look at the passport. Local Currency You need to change your foreign currency at the cruise terminal in Havana or at a bank in the square outside the terminal. The exchange rate is fixed and common to all banks. If you use US $ you are surcharged 10% making a total of 13% commission. We were advised to use GB pounds and were charged the 3% commission only. This is common to Euros and Canadian $ also. The tourist currency is the CUC which is worth 25 Cuban Pesos, the money used by locals. Rest Rooms Cuba has a strong health service which is free to Cubans but the health care does not apparently extend to public health as is obvious in the state of toilets in restaurants and bars. You should also have some small change for the person manning the toilets. Apparently it is not necessary but fully expected and in return you will be given a hand full of toilet paper. Take some tissue with you in any case. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
We chose this ship because of the itinerary; going to Cuba. However, after we booked, RCCL shortened the time in Havana--disappointing. This is an old and tired looking ship. Will not cruise on her again, regardless of itinerary. The ... Read More
We chose this ship because of the itinerary; going to Cuba. However, after we booked, RCCL shortened the time in Havana--disappointing. This is an old and tired looking ship. Will not cruise on her again, regardless of itinerary. The elevators are few and, oddly, when you press the call button, only one side responds. One would need to cross over to press the button on the other side. Boarding and disembarking was extremely tedious. The staff in the Windjammer were especially nice and attentive. We did not dine in the main dining room because only the late seating was available; 8:00 p.m. is way too late for us to eat (reflux problem.) The excursions in Havana were excellent if, a bit pricey. The staff, overall, were very good. The wake up call feature did not work on the phone in our room. Fortunately, we have an app on our laptop. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
Cuba was on my bucket list so decided to take this cruise. We had a great time. The ship is in good shape, the room was small but we did not spend much time in it. Small sofa was beautiful, not quite as much storage as larger ships but ... Read More
Cuba was on my bucket list so decided to take this cruise. We had a great time. The ship is in good shape, the room was small but we did not spend much time in it. Small sofa was beautiful, not quite as much storage as larger ships but adequate. Our tour "The Best of Havana", was amazing. We got to see so much in the 7 hour tour. Hemingway's house was great to see, the cemetery was very interesting, and all the old cars were fun to look at. We had a wonderful lobster lunch right on the water at Mr. Crab. Our tour guide was amazing and answered all kinds of questions we had about Cuba and the local life in Havana. We had bad weather on the way to Costa Maya and couldn't dock so the captain made a decision to go on to Cozumel, that was fantastic as we had great weather to spend sunning on board. The food was very good, the staff in the dining room was A No. 1. Our cabin attendant made us towel animals and kept the room in tip top shape. This is an older ship that I cruised in 1998, but it hasn't lost it's luster, we truly enjoyed our five days on the ship. Entertainment was good, the comedian was awesome, the ventriloquist was excellent and the singers and dancers put on a good show. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
This was our tenth cruise and second with Oceania. We were on the Riviera last year and had a wonderful time. Much to our delight this cruise was even better than the previous one. For us, as good as the ship itself was and all it had to ... Read More
This was our tenth cruise and second with Oceania. We were on the Riviera last year and had a wonderful time. Much to our delight this cruise was even better than the previous one. For us, as good as the ship itself was and all it had to offer, the best part of the cruise was the people. We met so many amazing people on this cruise and had a delightful time with them from the minute we boarded to the moment we left. We’ve been on the big ships in the past, but we much prefer the size of the Riviera. We find it's a little more intimate, with a sense of community when the ship is not a floating mega-city! Also, and I don’t mean to sound like a stuffy snob, but the type of people that cruise with Oceania appeal much more to our age and tastes than some of the other cruise lines. As so many others have noted, the food is outstanding from the main dining room to the specialty restaurants to the Terrace Café buffet. The buffet selection was as good as any of the other restaurants. Beyond the buffet's amazing selection, what also appealed to us about the buffet was that we don’t touch the food – it is served to us and as a result it is so much healthier. Speaking of healthy, we loved the fact that every morning we could get fresh veggie juice just like we have at home. In all the restaurants there were all sorts of healthy eating alternatives. The room was cozy but large enough. The storage space was adequate. Of course, we loved the balcony where we spent a lot of time enjoying our books and having a drink and taking in the gorgeous views. Even the bathroom was great. It was roomy and we loved having a tub. As for the entertainment, we’re not big on the song and dance shows, but we do love comedy, and on this cruise standup comedian Tom Drake was featured. He did two hysterically funny shows as well as a workshop on comedy. We were very happy with the ports we went to this year. The ports were Aruba, Bonaire, Grenada, Barbados, St. Lucia, St. Kitts and St. Barts. The stays in the ports for the most part were all day so we never felt rushed. Most of the excursions we chose were good – some better than others. St. Kitts was probably our favourite. We loved the beach and the drive there was breathtaking at times. Beach day at Aruba was great. We visited a lovely beach with lots of shade which we appreciated, and there was very good snorkelling there. We not impressed with the Spice Beach club excursion on Bonaire. It wasn’t much of a beach, but the snorkelling was good. There was only one port we didn’t visit, St. Barts, because we would have had to tender there. We don’t like the tenders that Oceania use. They use their lifeboats, and they are just too rocky. We had a bad experience on one last year and decided to avoid it this year. We found more than enough to do on board – trivia, miniature golf, shuffleboard, cooking lessons, (okay we’re 65, what do you expect!!) The staff was top notch. Everyone from our cabin attendants to the severs in the restaurants to everyone else on board were helpful, courteous and friendly. I should also point out that on this cruise we had the best cruise director ever. Her name was Dottie and she was by far the best Cruise Director we have come across in our ten cruises. She connected with the guests so perfectly. She was always bubbly, funny and just downright nice. Embarkation and debarkation was unbelievably smooth and quick. We hope to go on another Oceania cruise next year. We understand that the Riviera is going to be getting a little refurbishing. We did see some people complaining in previous reviews that the ship looked a little worn. We thought the ship was totally charming. We had no complaints about the appearance or performance of the ship. Hopefully we'll see what is new next year. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
Chose Azarmara because we did not want to be on a giant cruise ship with thousands of our closest friends. We chose this particular cruise because we wanted to experience Cuba and not just stop one place for a few hours. Service was ... Read More
Chose Azarmara because we did not want to be on a giant cruise ship with thousands of our closest friends. We chose this particular cruise because we wanted to experience Cuba and not just stop one place for a few hours. Service was stellar everywhere we went. After a couple of days in Windows Cafe, the server called me Diet Coke with a smile because it was a small enough ship to get to know people. Themed food night in some of the restaurants were well appreciated. The white night party on the deck was a fun evening. Lots of dancing! There seemed to be ample seating almost always in the pool area and plenty of activities for those who wanted to participate. The ship put up a big screen for the Superbowl and served Superbowl party foods for dinner which was a great touch. Getting on and getting off the boat at ports was a breeze.The ship was small enough to dock at all three ports so we didn't have wait to transfer to start our vacation. We chose to do private shore excursions, but did do the Tropicana & Santiago de Cuba though the boat, which were both well organized and interesting. Highly recommend the El Cobre tour which included an outstanding steel drum band who played music you would never expect from a steel drum. Our private tours were with Blexie - Havana & Caribbean Pearl Tours which were personalized based on our interests. They were both outstanding. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
The ship was okay, but you already know it's their oldest and smallest. Entertainment was mediocre when it came to stage shows, but the magician, comedian and Stephanie Parks were all great. If you have cruised mega ships, this ... Read More
The ship was okay, but you already know it's their oldest and smallest. Entertainment was mediocre when it came to stage shows, but the magician, comedian and Stephanie Parks were all great. If you have cruised mega ships, this will be a real come down, but it's "okay". And just "okay". Lower your expectations, focus on Cuba and you'll be fine. Coco Cay was good fun, but Atlantis was disappointing. Food was average at all locations, not terrible but nothing to write home about. Stevo our attendant was great and the staff was uniformly pleasant, it's just a smaller older boat. Passport control in Cuba was strange. They photographed checked everyone on day one, but on day two the booths were empty and everyone walked in unchecked. Same with customs going out. No one asked (until you got to the US) what you brought back from there. Havana CLub bar is a lot of fun and close to the ship. The old car tour with Alex was also awesome. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
We selected this Authentic Cuba cruise in order to visit Cuba and have an “authentic” experience. If you wish to have that I suggest you visit Havana, not Cienfuegos. The men in our group were hoping to see the 50’s cars that have ... Read More
We selected this Authentic Cuba cruise in order to visit Cuba and have an “authentic” experience. If you wish to have that I suggest you visit Havana, not Cienfuegos. The men in our group were hoping to see the 50’s cars that have been maintained, none in Cienfuegos! The Botanical Garden tour was also disappointing, the motor coach was in very good condition and the guide was excellent. However, this was NOT a Botanical Garden, more of a arboretum in poor condition. This portion of the tour was too long including the drive there and back; this left very little time to walk around the city. On a positive note, the chamber music type concert was excellent as was the lunch, although the hotelmwas not ready for us and this 15 minute delay took away even more time from city exploration. The Veendam is in dire need of refurbishment, it is scheduled for April. The suite was shabby and the tub was extremely slow to drain; only one electrical outlet in the entire suite. The crew is excellent, friendly and helpful. Food quality overall was very good but inconsistent. The Lido cafe is understaffed considering they serve all of the food, it is not an open buffet. Although this was a disappointing first experience with Holland America, overall we had a fun trip. The entertaiment ramged from very good to a excellents. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
We picked Azamara because of the itinerary: three ports in Cuba. The price was high, but it was billed as a "premium line" so we thought the cost would be worth the experience. We loved Cuba; I had arranged private guides through ... Read More
We picked Azamara because of the itinerary: three ports in Cuba. The price was high, but it was billed as a "premium line" so we thought the cost would be worth the experience. We loved Cuba; I had arranged private guides through FerTours (hats off to Alex!) in Havana and Cienfuegos and through Out of the Box tours in Santiago (Lisandra did an excellent job). In all three cities we traveled in early 1950's cars and the cost was far lower than the bus tours offered on Journey. Our cabin was drab and it was hard to believe the ship had been renovated. The bed was comfortable and the storage was ample. The bathroom was tiny and the shower had been designed for elves. The food on the ship was always available, but the only good meals we had were in the extra cost restaurants. We ate at Prime C twice and Aqualina (delicious Dover sole) once. The service in Discovery, the main dining room, was very slow and the meats (beef and veal) were beyond tough. We discovered that sticking with fish and seafood gave us the best chance for an edible dinner. The food at the White Night buffet was good, but the crowds made getting near your choices very hard. The brunch that was held once was also good. The service on the ship was excellent. Doug Cameron, a fabulous jazz violinist, entertained twice; we could have seen him every night. We will definitely see him if he ever comes to our town. Our trip was successful because we loved seeing Cuba, but we are still wondering why Azamara is a premium line. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019

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