Sail Date: July 2019
We’d booked the Mediterranean cruise onboard Freedom of the Seas & wanted to try out the Baltic & Russia cruise with Royal Caribbean. We found the ship smaller but enjoyable but having been on the larger ship Freedom of the Seas ... Read More
We’d booked the Mediterranean cruise onboard Freedom of the Seas & wanted to try out the Baltic & Russia cruise with Royal Caribbean. We found the ship smaller but enjoyable but having been on the larger ship Freedom of the Seas it felt like a downgrade. No soda dispenser machine & awkward to be asking at a bar for soda top ups. Highlight was the cinema & the excellent movies. Hardly anyone ever went into the crown pub it was also awkward walking through casino to get to other places. Onboard entertainment in Tropical theatre was average. The one shore excursion we booked via RC wasn’t great. The independent tours we did book online were more superior. A charge of about €245 was taken from my account despite having paid a final statement of over €600. Waiting to get this back. Overall I’ll consider trying another cruise company or going on a bigger ship with more facilities Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2018
We chose this cruise for the itinerary plus we got a good price with Planet cruise. The cabin was lovely and spacious. Staff were very good. Food was good and the bars were excellent. We bought the drinks package. This was worth it as ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the itinerary plus we got a good price with Planet cruise. The cabin was lovely and spacious. Staff were very good. Food was good and the bars were excellent. We bought the drinks package. This was worth it as the drinks are pricey. The only negative was the queuing to enter St Petersburg. This was not helped by RC excursion team insisting that their excursions go first. My advice just leave the ship ASAP. No one was stopped. We had an excellent tour of St Petersburg with Alla tours. Our guide Pauline was excellent. Other passengers were complaining about the ships excursions. We were a party of 5 with 3 cabins. We all had a brilliant time. We made our own way around Tallin, Riga and Helsinki. It was easy to get around. Would recommend this trip for all ages. You'll have A fab time. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2018
We chose the serenade because of the great destinations and with a 7 year old girl it felt like a convenient way to get around and see Scandinavia and Russia. Having said that we were very conscious that the ship itself was fairly old and ... Read More
We chose the serenade because of the great destinations and with a 7 year old girl it felt like a convenient way to get around and see Scandinavia and Russia. Having said that we were very conscious that the ship itself was fairly old and small and we’d read reviews about everything that has gone wrong from embarkation to food to the service. But we were so pleasantly surprised right through the programme. Getting on the ship was an absolute breeze. We were taken into lunch at the Windjammer and by the time we’d finished the rooms were ready. The rooms also was just about right and clean with a cozy balcony. It was serviced twice a day with my child’s bunker bed put down during the evening turn down service. Our daughter absolutely loved the kids club activities in the adventure ocean club (9 am to 12pm; 2pm to 5pm and 7pm to 10pm). So much so that she didn’t join us in a couple of ports. This gave us ample time to lounge around, check the 16 bars without having to worry about her. This was such a blessing and the team at adventure ocean where thorough professionals providing fun educational ways to keep the children engaged. The service also was really exceptional and personalised. We got the same table in the dining room. But also in Windjammer. The staff is from all over and friendly and ever willing to engage in conversations. The food was amazing all through and surprisingly we did not get bored although we didn’t do any of the speciality dining. The staff is particular about hiegene and everyone follows through with sanitised hands. No cases of Nora virus was reported on the ship which was the other thing we were worried about. The other impressive feat was the way a helicopter landed to fly someone out. It was just the most amazing sight. And the copter looked too large but we didn’t feel a thing when it landed or took off. And there wasn’t any fuss at all. Entertainment on the ship was also quite nice in the tropical theatre, in the centrum and the safari club. Some of the home grown productions are quite good. The team really makes an effort and it comes through. We didn’t do shore excursions with the exception of Russia for visa. In all other places we were offered a shuttle service into the city centre for 10 dollars. There was no hassle getting out or in whatsoever and no preference was given to people on the shore excursions as we had read. All in all without having to spend on any additionals the cruise turned out to be a lovely experience and we are considering more such cruises. We will in all probability sail on the royal Caribbean. The ship offers gorgeous views of the sea with glass everywhere. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
My wife and I decided to go on the 7 Night Scandinavia And Russia Cruise. It was awesome!!! The ship, while a little on the dated side, was clean and the crew was fantastic. We had an Aft facing Cabin on Deck 8 and it was very nice. As ... Read More
My wife and I decided to go on the 7 Night Scandinavia And Russia Cruise. It was awesome!!! The ship, while a little on the dated side, was clean and the crew was fantastic. We had an Aft facing Cabin on Deck 8 and it was very nice. As ours was on a corner (8168), we had a little bigger balcony. There is plenty of storage in the cabin. Our TV had issues, but they worked to get it fixed quickly. The bathroom is small but bigger than I expected. We did "My Time" dining but only ate in the Reflection dining room on the Formal Nights and one breakfast. If you want to wear a tux, I recommend renting on from RC prior to the cruise. No need to pack one. The meals in the Reflection was very good. I think they could have added a little more variety, but what we had was very tasty. The service for dinners was fantastic. They even brought us out a special dessert for our anniversary!!!! The breakfast in the Reflection was not very good. They throw you at a table and the service was very, very slow. When we got our food it was not very warm. The rest of our dinners were in the Windjammer, which was very good as buffets go. My wife figured out that Room Service is very cheap ($9.50)!! We ended up doing Room Service for our breakfasts which helped on Excursion days. We spent quite a few evenings in the Pub. They had excellent service and one of my favorite beers. The singer most nights did requests and we did a lot of sing alongs with the rest of the audience. We did watch one show in the main theater. It was nice but not memorable. Excursions were very good. The only one that was disappointing was in Stockholm. Due to the drought they were having we could not go into the canals (not RC fault). So we just cruised around the main channel. The tour guide did a great job. We then were supposed to take a bus tour of old town, but due to construction, we ended up sitting in traffic. Very disappointed. The Tallinn Old Town and Beer tour is very good. They mark it as "Strenuous" but it is not for us mid 50 year olds. Saint Petersburg was very good. We did the Grand Petersburg and Hermitage. We were lucky as we were the second tour into the Hermitage that day. Saw a lot of the city and they take you shopping at a big tourist trap place. Prices were good though, but get in line early to pay and stand your ground. A lot of line cutting. Helsinki was also good. We did the Town Tour and Ice Bar. Both were great. All in all, if I had to do it over again, I would do Stockholm on our own but the others were good to be on a tour (it is required in Saint Petersburg unless you have a tourist visa). Getting on and off the boat was very easy. Embarkation Day, we had a very smooth experience, but don't expect your bag brought to your cabin. Ours were way down the corridor from our cabin. We had very little issues on Excursions days getting on and off the boat. We only had one long line and that was in Saint Petersburg. On our return to Copenhagen, things went so smoothly, we were off the boat and in a cab in about 30 minutes. I highly recommend having your bags handled going off the ship (unless you are traveling light). The elevators are packed so you have to lug everything down stairs. We only had to go from 8 to 4 to our waiting area and then down to two but it was still a workout lugging our small bags. I was very pleased with this cruise. We are going on a Christmas Cruise with RC on the Jewel of the Seas. We are looking forward to it. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2017
Staff great with exception of crown and anchor director who seemed to cater to a select few. Very evident that ship is in desperate need of updating. Had a balcony yet cabin was smaller than a postage stamp..not much can be changed there. ... Read More
Staff great with exception of crown and anchor director who seemed to cater to a select few. Very evident that ship is in desperate need of updating. Had a balcony yet cabin was smaller than a postage stamp..not much can be changed there. You get spoiled on a larger ship. Will keep this in mind when booking next cruise. Children allowed in pools constantly and hot tubs became swimming pools for the children. Saw a baby with parents who was not trained in the pool on numerous occasions and in hot tub when signs clearly state no children who are not trained. KIDS allowed to jump in the pools when again signs clearly state this is prohibited. When I told the attendant, he stated that this could not be enforced. TAKE THE SIGNS DOWN IF YOU HAVE NO INTENTION OF ENFORCING THEM. NOT A PLEASANT EXPERIENCE AT THE POOLS AND HOT TUBS DURING THE HOURS KIDS WERE PRESENT. We are glad we are Crown and Anchor but see so many cutbacks since we began cruising in 1982. Sad. Do not want Royal Caribbean to become like Carnival. Food was good but again quality has slipped somewhat. Dining service outstanding..great personable staff. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
We were organizing a three generation girl's tour, with my mother (87 and spry), daughter (35 and an experienced traveller) and myself (64, small mobility issue). Our plan was to stop over for 3 days in Iceland, and then visit family ... Read More
We were organizing a three generation girl's tour, with my mother (87 and spry), daughter (35 and an experienced traveller) and myself (64, small mobility issue). Our plan was to stop over for 3 days in Iceland, and then visit family in Denmark, and we decided that this cruise would give us an opportunity to extend our trip and get a brief overview of other countries we had only experienced through the news and history books. The planning went extremely well. We had a day in Stockholm before embarking, and used a HOHO bus to get a look at the city. The airport was quite a distance from the city and from the port, so allow time to get to your destination. The ship, Serenade of the Seas, was huge! It is quite new, and has deservedly won an award for the best crew team at least twice. We were impressed with the crew who proudly represent 65 nationalities, and that there were 53 nationalities in the guest makeup. It was like a little world within the ship - only a friendly, accommodating world with people getting along. Also the efficiency of loading the equivalent a of small town onto a ship in 3 hours and getting them all happily established in their quarters was wonderful to see. It was a real pleasure that the Captain of the vessel, Captain Tor, was Norwegian. His patter was excellent, and we loved seeing him appear at so many of the events, and interact with the passengers. His jokes were great, (I hope the Chief Engineer finds the keys to the ship) and he plays a mean guitar! We booked the 6:00 pm dining hour, for dinner, although we don't normally eat that early. However, we wanted to be free to enjoy the other evening activities. The meals were lovely, and varied. A little bland, but that is to be expected when planning food for 2,500 people of 53 nationalities! One night, after talking to a crew member about his country, we asked if the kitchen could prepare a special Philippine dish, and the next night it was proudly presented to us! And it was delicious! Our servers were friendly and all of them were professional, efficient, and extremely helpful. We enjoyed the variety of the Entertainment and activities on board, although with 5 days of shore excursions we didn't have a chance to climb walls or use the pools. But we did enjoy a couple of Spa experiences including excellent foot reflexology from the lovely Peruvian, Dio. The shows were entertaining, varied, child friendly. Everybody seemed to be happy with the shows. Topi, the Entertainment Director and Aysy, were approachable and charming. Aysy is Russian and gave a great presentation on Russian history and culture. Regarding the Ports of Call and shore excursions, all were interesting and exactly what we came to see. It was a shame that 7 huge Cruiseships came into St Petersburgh for the same 2 day period. This was not the fault of the Serenade of the Seas, but it took over two hours to clear the customs to start our tour of St Petersburgh. We were 2.5 hours late starting on the itinerary, and already tired from standing in line. The crush of tours through the main attractions was very difficult - hot, crowded, and we had to keep following our guide and keeping an eye out for the other people in our group. The variety of things we saw was excellent. I used Alla Tours for the two day excursion, and also for a evening Ballet performance of Sleeping Beauty. Tip: In Tallin, it is possible to walk independently around the old walled town, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and truly beautiful. We found a good map, and explored on our own, which was a good change from chasing tour guides in St Petersburgh. (But thank heavens for the tour guide in St. P!) We did not travel with children, but we were impressed by the number of families on board. They all seemed to have a great time, and many of the families we talked to had children who love cruising, because of the activities. I have only one point I would like to make concerning the level of "upselling" on the ship both before, during and after the cruise. It was incessant and confusing. Offers for extra restaurants, drink packages, spa packages, sales in the gift shop, casino packages, and book your next cruise really took away from the experience. I actually felt at one point that we might not get access to water unless I bought the water package! However, outside of that small concern, which we soon learned to ignore, we had a great trip. And give me a trip with that many ports of call any time! (Especially in a comfortable climate - I don't like hot weather, or lying around any time). Happy cruising, and thank you Serenade of the Sea! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2017
I wanna visit St Petersburg so I choose this cruise. Come on board to enjoy good food and good service. Embarkation and disemarkation went smoothly.no need to wait too long. cabin service are excellent staffs very polite . Dining ... Read More
I wanna visit St Petersburg so I choose this cruise. Come on board to enjoy good food and good service. Embarkation and disemarkation went smoothly.no need to wait too long. cabin service are excellent staffs very polite . Dining room service excellent the waiter Judas a very cheerful guy always has a sense of humour.and the assistant waiter Nykyta he is a very helpful and smart guy . I ordered hot milk for my coffee once and the following days of the dinner time I dont need to ask again and he remember to bring me the hot milk. excellent service. After dinner we will enjoy the show at the theater. good show especially the Rock and Roll time.I love the class to teach cha cha and enjoy to take part. overall the service are excellent . I will highly recommand my friends to join this cruise and wish to board this ship again in the near future. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2017
It is our second cruise with Royal Caribbean and we were extremely pleased with almost everything. The staff is amazingly friendly, the ship is well designed and equipped, very clean and the service is outstanding. Food is great, ... Read More
It is our second cruise with Royal Caribbean and we were extremely pleased with almost everything. The staff is amazingly friendly, the ship is well designed and equipped, very clean and the service is outstanding. Food is great, entertainment is excellent, attractions, shopping, rooms and rooms service are outstanding as well. We were impressed with the abundance of activities on board that we used mostly on our day at sea since every day we were ashore as well enjoying the ports of call. There were as well many options for touring the cities and actually the attractions offered were much more than we could possibly enjoy. This gave every passenger a multitude of choices and everybody could choose his preferred activity. The ship was designed with attention to disabled people needs that could participate and it was amazing to see how they enjoyed the cruise as well. There is no doubt in our mind that our next cruise will be with Royal Caribbean as well. ITZIK MONEL and LILI Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
Rude staff, poor service, very unresponsive to needs. Food quality was very bad. Breakfast: Orders that had any variation from the menu, for example no cheese on my egg, were often wrong because the staff did not understand english ... Read More
Rude staff, poor service, very unresponsive to needs. Food quality was very bad. Breakfast: Orders that had any variation from the menu, for example no cheese on my egg, were often wrong because the staff did not understand english well. It took may attempts to fix wrong orders. It took 25 minutes to get a cup of coffee in the dinning room. Orders were missing toasts. The list goes on. Bars: Rude staff. Even the main bars were missing drinks from the menu. Bar tenders were not willing to fetch the drinks from another bar or order the bottles for their bar. They made us go around fetching drinks form bars across the ship. Customer Service: Very poor grasp of english language. Based on their responses, it was evident they did not understand the question. Internet: Very bad quality. Signal dropped every five minutes. I took my device to the help desk. The tech representative tried to connect to the wifi, saw the errors message pop up, then asked me what is the problem. When I asked him to look at the error message, he looked confused and said would you like a refund. A friend on the ship told me to turn of the wifi and then turn it back on, problem solved but with no help from the staff. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
We chose this cruise for the itinerary since we'd heard from multiple people that a Baltic cruise was a "must do". While we were very impressed with the ports of call, the ship left something to be desired. We had read that ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the itinerary since we'd heard from multiple people that a Baltic cruise was a "must do". While we were very impressed with the ports of call, the ship left something to be desired. We had read that the boat had recently been remodeled and you could tell that it had a minimal face lift - new carpet and artwork. The boat itself was very clean and the service was great, but that's the extent of nice things i can say about the boat itself - This cruise felt like a constant quest for RC to get as much money from you as possible - There were hardly any activities on board that didn't come at an additional cost. In the dining room, every menu came with "up charge" items and we were even told that we couldn't have breakfast in the dining room one morning because they were doing a brunch that was an additional $35. We ate in Chops Grille the last night of the cruise because of a good experience we had on another cruise and we were very disappointing. Our service was better in the main dining room and my husband had to send back his steak twice and it was still not correct. We wont be going back to chops again. The windjammer was pretty terrible as well. I was very surprised at the poor quality of the food on this cruise given the opposite experience we've had with RC on other cruises - we chalked it up to the fact that they were probably sourcing from different areas given the area of the world and had less selection. Room service is also no longer included outside of toast, coffee and pastries. Very dissapointed at how nickel and dimed we were given the cost of the cruise itself. Aside from the food - our service and experience was great. If i had to do it over again i would choose an itinerary that skipped Estonia and Latvia. Russia 2 day tour was fantastic but strenuous - be aware of that if you are not an active person. Finland Icebar tour way exceeded our expectations and ended up being a favorite. Estonia bike tours were a cluster. No organization, Not enough helmets, not enough warning for participants that you need to be a seasoned bike rider to do this tour. We were ok but lost 2 families along the way due to bike wrecks - the tour guides were not really keeping track of everyone either. Taste of Latvia tour was disappointing but cheap. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2017
I didn't know much about Royal Caribbean that's why I wanted to try to make a cruise with them..and I certainly made a good choice!!! In my opinion the best one I have tried concerning Food and drinks...very good organization in ... Read More
I didn't know much about Royal Caribbean that's why I wanted to try to make a cruise with them..and I certainly made a good choice!!! In my opinion the best one I have tried concerning Food and drinks...very good organization in global and a nice ship .Recomendable.!!!!!! There are a lot of activities, evening shows are very pleasant. What definitely paid my attention is that the ship has a lot of bars and you don't have to wait long time to get your drink...everything goes very smoothly because there are a lot of possibilities to get your drinks on different floors on deck ship as well outside as inside. Very good organization to get on board and to go out, nearly the city so in many cases you can almost walking and otherwise they offer transporte possibilities quite smoothly. Good service on board, the only thing i would suggest...the best way to choose your cabin is in the middle of the ship..because with bad weather the ship can move a little bit, so if you have the possibility choose a good central cabin. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
I choose this cruise only because of it itinerary only. It is the only cruise line that offer 3 days in St Petersburg. Now that I have gone, I think 2 days will be enough which mean many other cruise lines to choose from. I have been ... Read More
I choose this cruise only because of it itinerary only. It is the only cruise line that offer 3 days in St Petersburg. Now that I have gone, I think 2 days will be enough which mean many other cruise lines to choose from. I have been with Princess cruises, Celebrity cruises and P&O. I have never experience a cruise which just want to push the customers to buy and buy. First, throughout the ship, there are booths setting up trying to sell customer drinks and to sell customers to take pictures. The very one thing that turns me off is that they even sell you to pay extra to go to other speciality restaurant right in front of the main dinning room and while you are already sitting at your dinning table inside the dinning room. Imagine the situation that we are walking into the main dinning room or when we are already sitting down at the dinner table, preparing ourselves for a fine, nice dinner and someone is telling you to spend some money in other better restaurant. What does this mea to men? Does it mean the restaurant that we are going to dine is not a good one? I honestly don't think this is a good idea to try to get income this way. Also, they are selling Sushi inside the dinning room while we are having our meal. Both Princess and Celebrity offer customers the opportunity to go inside the kitchen to have a look of how's the catering job done. For Royal caribbean, it request us to pay for a look. Well, speechless. Overall, food is very average. In the main dinning room, the food is serve cold even it is suppose to be hot dish. The presentation of soup is so awful as you can clearly see the soup spill around the bowl. I have never seen this kind of food presentation in other cruise line. If they make an extra effort to wipe the bowl slightly, we would not notice about it. Royal Caribbean close its buffet restaurant between lunch, and snack and dinner. Princess and Celebrity never close it even though they are changing their food as per different section time. Service desk staff - unbelievable rude. First, they don't carry smile. Even when I settle my payment, they don't even say thank you. I was in a group of 13 and we were allocated in 2 different disembarkation time. I asked for some luggage tags which matched the other group. I was given that at the first time with no problem. Then after 20 minutes, I get back to the same staff and get 2 extra tags. He look at me and said "you have taken too many tags". I told him I have got 13 people and each of us have 2 or some of us have more luggage. I am not asking to waste it". After he heard of this, he turn his back to me going to get the tags for me but without saying a word. As a customer, I feel very bad being treat like this. I just not feeling comfortable. For entertainment, their show is okay despite some are really boring. People have to leave just after the show start. There are several nights that they only have 1 show for the whole night. That's just mean some of the customers are going to miss out. I am very sure that I will not get on Royal Caribbean anymore. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
Great itinerary and great time on this trip. Easy checkin and disembarkation. Getting into Russia was a little slow the first day but quick and easy the next two days. All ports where great, but Helsinki was our least favorite. We could ... Read More
Great itinerary and great time on this trip. Easy checkin and disembarkation. Getting into Russia was a little slow the first day but quick and easy the next two days. All ports where great, but Helsinki was our least favorite. We could have used another day at sea that day instead. Entertainment was good, food in main dining room was ok. We always found something we liked and our waiter and assistant made the experience fantastic. Awesome cabin steward, attentive and helpful. Cruise director was ok, not great but not bad. Ship was clean and well maintained, some areas could use some sprucing up, but all in all looked good. All cruises are what you make of them, instead of looking for negative things embrace everything else and enjoy everything else. The ports of call was a great selection and learning their history and enjoying the local flavors and brews makes the experience that much richer. We would go again in a second. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
this cruise went where we had been wanting to go. service in all areas was excellent I have no complaints. because we were sailing up to where the sun doesn't set the interior cabin was the way to go. could have used a small nite ... Read More
this cruise went where we had been wanting to go. service in all areas was excellent I have no complaints. because we were sailing up to where the sun doesn't set the interior cabin was the way to go. could have used a small nite lite in the cabin to see to go to bathroom in the reflections dining room we had a wonderful tale for the four of us that were traveling together and our waiter cedric was the best his asst dana was fanstatic. they always were a step ahead of our needs. was nice to be spoiled!! the shows were very entertaining and funny at times.. everyone is so talented in their perspective jobs. it made for a very smooth voyage. with the world being the way it is in todays time, it was wonderful to see all people smiling and greeting other people with respect. maybe the world should take a lesson from cruise ships with people from all over the world on it. wow that's the kind of world I would like to see thanks for the great trip Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
We choose this route because we wanted to visit the baltic and this was a perfect experience. The entertainment is fantastic the musicians are really good (all of them), dining experience is fantastic the only problem is when you want ... Read More
We choose this route because we wanted to visit the baltic and this was a perfect experience. The entertainment is fantastic the musicians are really good (all of them), dining experience is fantastic the only problem is when you want to have dinner because there hours which can be very busy. We took the St Petersbourgh shore excursion due to problems with visa, but they are very expensive so we rather walk or take the bus. Cleaning in the Windjammer could be better during lunch time. Very nice service in board, the barman were attentive and fast, the pool is nice but full of kids so we end up in the solarium (no kids). The ports of call were fantastic, and they give you enough time to visit without any problem. The only problem I found from shore excursions is they are very slow as some people are always complaining they have to walk. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
We flew into Copenhagen a couple of days early and explored on our own. Love that beautiful city. We took a taxi to the cruise port at our assigned time and check in was a breeze. We were onboard and at the buffet by 1:30 pm. Our ... Read More
We flew into Copenhagen a couple of days early and explored on our own. Love that beautiful city. We took a taxi to the cruise port at our assigned time and check in was a breeze. We were onboard and at the buffet by 1:30 pm. Our luggage was outside our cabin when we got back from lunch. I will do our review in sections: Cabin - we were in cabin 7158. It was dated, but nice. The half sofa was quite stained, but I just put towels on it. The bed was comfy and I brought my own pillow, so I can't comment on the pillows. The balcony is large. It does have an extension that goes out over the lifeboats, but it isn't obstructed in anyway. Our cabin steward was Daisy and we hardly saw her, but our room was always made up and had cute towel animals each night. Windjammer - if you got there for breakfast around 7:00 - 7:30, it wasn't too crowded and you could always easily find a table. Later than that, and you would have to search a little harder for a table. I thought the food in the Windjammer was really good and there was always something I liked. I used the omelet station almost every morning (because I was there early) Reflections Dining Room - we were a group of 6 and we always do the traditional set dining time. Our time was 6:00 pm. Our waiters were Mikhail and Reggie and they pampered us. The food was good - but they just don't have the selections they used to. (thus the reason I miss the old days) And you used to get lobster on formal nights, but alas ... now it is offered every night ... for $40 extra!! But the menu choices we made were always delicious. Shows - we only went to a couple of shows and they were good. We loved Toby and the (somebody) Dogs. Toby is the cruise director, and man he puts on a good 50's - 60's show. I miss the old midnight grand buffets - especially the ones with the ice sculptures. But, oh well - all the cruise lines have cut them. Tour Excursions - well organized and on time. No complaints. STOCKHOLM - I didn't care for our Stockholm tour that much - Old Town and Royal Palace. The Palace is dark and they are renovating about every other room in it - tarps and stuff everywhere (we were informed it won't be done for several years) - But hey, we are the ones that chose that tour. ESTONIA - we did the Soviet Experience Tour and we loved it. Our friends did the Country and Old Town Tour (I think that's the name) and they loved it. For us, experiencing what it was like during the communist rule was very interesting - and it was also fun because our tour guide had some humorous stories as well. After the tour, we wandered around the Old Town and did some shopping. It was great. ST. PETERSBURG - we took the Grand St. Petersburg and Hermitage Tour. We really enjoyed it and the Hermitage (Winter Palace) was breathtaking. One thing I didn't care for was that our tour guide was so into the famous paintings there and she spent so much time interpreting what the painter had in mind, that we just blew through the Russian History and Rominov stuff, so she could hurry and get to the next painting. I love art -- but I love history too. The lunch was good and in a neat little restaurant. We also toured St. Isaac's Cathedral. It is so old and so beautiful. I can't believe the communist left that Christian cathedral alone. The Church of Spilt Blood was amazing. (we didn't go inside) All the other photo stops and the shopping stop was well worth it. HELSINKI - we happened to port on the day of the funeral of the PM of Finland and most everything was closed. Luckily, we had signed up for the Glimpse of Porvoo, which is about 45 minutes out of Helsinki. What a cute little town and all the shops were open. COPENHAGEN - since our flight was later, we took the Royal Copenhagen w/airport transfer tour. We went to the Little Mermaid (and I mean little) - talk about c r o w d e d!! Then we toured Christianborg Palace and Rosenborg Palace. Loved them. We just enjoyed this cruise so much. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2017
An excellent opportunity to relax combining high level tourism, living in a luxurious environment and simultaneously enjoying on board any activity you wanted to have immediate access to it ( theater, cinema, gym, swimming , ... Read More
An excellent opportunity to relax combining high level tourism, living in a luxurious environment and simultaneously enjoying on board any activity you wanted to have immediate access to it ( theater, cinema, gym, swimming , entertainment , etc) and excellent quality, variety and quantity of food all day plus variety of gourmet restaurants at reasonable price. On the other hand the cost of some of the excursions may be improved as well as the variety and quality of the entertainment (more and more resent movies, theater). Very important was the embarkation de-embarkation process which was very well organized very quick and with minimum effort of the passengers. The crew members were always available and ready to explain and assist, always with a smile. The Windjammer, you could always find a place, the food and the service excellent and the cooks eager to satisfy any request. This level should at least be maintained as such. At last , a bravo to Taor and Marcus, our waiters in the dining room and bravo to the management for an excellent job. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
The first reason why we did this cruise is the ports of call and second this is our 6th time cruising with RCC. The ship could really use some major window washing. It was hard to see the views through the window in the back of the ship ... Read More
The first reason why we did this cruise is the ports of call and second this is our 6th time cruising with RCC. The ship could really use some major window washing. It was hard to see the views through the window in the back of the ship because the windows were really dirty. It's an older ship, so there are signs everywhere of it's age and used. Their Photo Gallery can use some lessons about photo retouching from Carnival Cruise. Carnival offers photo retouching for free and take much professional photos, where as RCC does not offer this at all. We could have spent more money in the photo if they came out more professional looking, come on, with the computer technology, this is not hard thing to do! The food was just okay but gets to be boring after a couple of days. We booked a dinner at Chops Grille for $35 pp, I was disappointed that there are additional charges for some steak and lobster for $30! The steak almost tasted like the ones in the main dining room. So I think the specialty restaurants on board is not worth it. The crews were amazing, the entertainment was good. What I love most was the disco night, everybody seems to have a good time. The crew did a wonderful job on this event. We also booked the specialty sushi restaurant, Izumi, which was a good relief from the ship's daily food routine. RCC seems to be cutting back and charging on things which they did not use to charge before, like American room service, no more lobster night. We are Platinum member and the only thing we got was a robe to use while on board! They did not even bother to do anything for our 33 year anniversary even though they asked us in advance; We are glad that we booked all our shore excursions thru SPB tours, we don't feel like herds compared to the RCC big bus tours. SPB tours are so professional and have smaller crowds. The best to use anywhere in the Baltics, we booked cuz they have good reviews in tripadvisor.com. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2016
This cruise was back-to-back with Norwegian fjords. We chose it because we have done the Caribbean and Mediterranian, and wanted something different. The itinerary was supposed to be Stockholm, Estonia, St Petersburg, and Helsinki, but ... Read More
This cruise was back-to-back with Norwegian fjords. We chose it because we have done the Caribbean and Mediterranian, and wanted something different. The itinerary was supposed to be Stockholm, Estonia, St Petersburg, and Helsinki, but the weather was bad in Stockholm, so we went to Estonia, then spent two nights in St Petersburg instead of the one we were scheduled for, and then went to Helsinki. I know some folks were disappointed, but we were happy to spend more time in St. Petersburg as we have both spent a lot of time in Sweden. Seranade is a little smaller than the larger ocean-going ships, as it goes up through the fjords of Norway, and I expect a larger ship may not be able to navigate some of those narrow passages. We actually enjoyed the smaller ship. The big ones can be a bit hectic. Food and service were excellent, as usual for RC. We had two excellent waiters in the main dining room, and very much enjoyed dining with them. Their names were Pablo and Vyacheslav. Pablo was from the Dominican Republic and Slav was from the Ukraine. Excellent cruise and highly recommended. Read Less
Serenade of the Seas Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.3
Dining 4.0 4.0
Entertainment 5.0 3.7
Public Rooms 5.0 4.3
Fitness Recreation 5.0 4.0
Family 5.0 4.0
Shore Excursion 3.0 3.9
Enrichment 1.0 3.5
Service 5.0 4.4
Value For Money 5.0 3.9
Rates 4.0 4.3

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