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4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2013
I've never considered cruising to be something I would enjoy, however, when Wacken Open Air (German Heavy Metal Festival) announced the first Full Metal Cruise, my husband and I booked up straight away and we departed from Hamburg. ... Read More
I've never considered cruising to be something I would enjoy, however, when Wacken Open Air (German Heavy Metal Festival) announced the first Full Metal Cruise, my husband and I booked up straight away and we departed from Hamburg. The ship was wonderful, it was like living in a 5 star hotel with a music festival on the doorstep. The food was fantastic and although I'm vegetarian, I always found plenty of things I could eat, plenty of fruit and salad and a very good italian restaurant, where you could as many pizza toppings or pasta sauce ingredients as you liked. Wine and beer and soft drinks were free all day, with spirits and cocktails included after 6pm. There were a good choice of bars to drink in, one of which I only discovered on the last night. The staff were lovely and most spoke English, however, all announcements and written information was in German so we got a bit confused at times. Luckily a nice German passenger translated the lifeboat/safety announcement for us. I fully intend to go on Metal Cruise 2 in 2015 and I'm taking German lessons in preparation. I was worried about feeling seasick but I needn't have been as the ship was very stable and the only time I was really conscious of it moving was when it was turning to come into port. Embarkation took some time but I imagine this is normal when you have to check in so many people. We sat in the Hafen Cruise Centre and enjoyed the German lager until the crowds had gone down a bit anyway. I can't comment on fitness and recreation or enrichment activities as I was there for the music, which did not dissappoint. Regarding excursions, our first port of call was Southampton which is very near to Bournemouth, where we lived so there was not much point in us visiting Stonehenge or Salisbury, although the Germans enjoyed sightseeing. We went to Le Havre by shuttle bus from the port and also Amsterdam, where you can just walk to the city from the ship.   Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2012
Our German cousins asked us to cruise with them to Norway. We let them do all the planning and they chose Mein Schiff 2 sailing out of Kiel. We arrived 4 days early and stayed at the Nordic Astor hotel in Kiel. It's a nice clean hotel ... Read More
Our German cousins asked us to cruise with them to Norway. We let them do all the planning and they chose Mein Schiff 2 sailing out of Kiel. We arrived 4 days early and stayed at the Nordic Astor hotel in Kiel. It's a nice clean hotel with a great buffet breakfast on the top floor with a wonderful view of Kiel. Two days prior to our cruise, my wife who speaks fluent German called TUI Cruises to inquire about the Norway harbor pilots strike, and she called again the morning of our cruise. TUI told her not to be concerned because they would helicopter harbor pilots to our ship and we would definitely be visiting Norway. There is only German spoken or written on the ship and so all announcements are made in German. The first night the captain tells us that when we wake up in the morning, if we see land we will be in Norway..we do see land probably 5 miles away and about 8am the captain says NO Norway, we are going to Scotland. I recommend none Germans to stay away from TUI Cruises. They only want Germans, they confiscated our passports and told us we could have them back once we were back to Kiel. We were questioned twice about why we were on a German cruise ship. The ship itself is wonderful and you can still see some of the old Celebrity Mercury touches. Since English is the language of the crew, we had no problems speaking with crew members, in fact they started seeking us out, some said how nice to talk English with friendly folks. Many commented on how stern and unfriendly the Germans could be. The food was outstanding, probably some of the best we've had. One interesting tidbit, I couldn't read the German menu, but since English is the language of the crew, their menu order forms were printed in English, so they would give me a copy and then I knew what to order. There was no charge for drinks, beer, or wine. In fact beer and wine taps were available for passengers use. I am sorry that TUI Cruises doesn't want none Germans on their ship, I'm even more sorry that RCL who has a 50% interest in TUI condones this. Our ports on this cruise were Orkney Island, ship was at dock and Orkney Island is simply beautiful. Invergordon at which the ship was docked was starting point for a tour to Loch Ness, no we didn't see Nessy Read Less
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