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2 TUI Cruises Europe - Western Mediterranean Cruise Reviews

Myself, hubby and our dear friends decided to trial our sea legs on a cruise to the Western Med. Looking through the Tui catalogue found us becoming more and more confused on where to go, how long to go for and which ship. Eventually we ... Read More
Myself, hubby and our dear friends decided to trial our sea legs on a cruise to the Western Med. Looking through the Tui catalogue found us becoming more and more confused on where to go, how long to go for and which ship. Eventually we decided on The Treasures of the Western Med as we all wanted to do Sorrento (which unfortunately the sea was too rough to get us to port via Tender so we missed it). This did mean we had an unscheduled stop to Naples which was enjoyed with a glass of Pimms on deck - we didnt disembark here as it looked uninviting. The Majesty is an older ship and we were told she was a bit tired but provided everything we needed. Within the first 5 minutes of being in the cabin i hit my leg on the wooden framed bed as there was very little room available in the room. I found out later our friend had experienced the same bruise - both obviously in a hurry to look out of the porthole window. We went for an outside cabin but not a balcony as we did not feel the extra cost was warranted. The staff on the ship were very strict on washing hands and sanitiser which we were very impressed at as we obviously dont ever want to get sick while out in the open waves. All the staff were helpful, friendly and funny - even those who spoke very little English made every effort to be welcoming and friendly. The food was amazing, the shows were very good and the evening entertainment was great in the bars aswell as the main showroom. Some nights there was a struggle to find a seat but that is evidencing how good the entertainment team was. We went all out in the evenings and wore our best bib and tucker - not everyone did but that is the beauty of having the cruise that you want and not caring what others do - if you want to dress up then do it but if you are happy to be neat and tidy then that is good too. Some people went to the buffet for all their meals as the food there was immense and no special dress code applied. Something for everyone! Drinks package was a cheap option for us and we drank what we wanted, when we wanted and how much we wanted - GREAT! The excursions were not particularly great but it appeared that was ore about not a lot being available in the areas. Boarding and preparing to leave was easy and uncomplicated, the Tui reps were great and made all transfers very easy to deal with. The only thing that could have been improved was the excursions - value for money they are not! We loved it so much we booked again with P&O to have a flavour of another provider. This was for a shorter cruise (a taster) as i dont like the idea of accruing more costs on my holiday, i like knowing i have paid for everything already and no one is going to want to hit my debit card with extras. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
My mother has always wanted to go on a cruise, particularly after watching a tv show set on the MS Deutschland (she's German, my dad's Maltese, so I'm split down the middle!). I was never that enthusiastic, but I decided to ... Read More
My mother has always wanted to go on a cruise, particularly after watching a tv show set on the MS Deutschland (she's German, my dad's Maltese, so I'm split down the middle!). I was never that enthusiastic, but I decided to make her happy this years, and I honestly was surprised at how much I enjoyed it. Also, we live in Malta, so getting on board was simply a matter of driving down to the harbour and getting on - although be warned - there's a long line for passport control and to get the board card which you use to buy anything and as a key card, so you might want to board a couple of hours later than the travel agent advises. The cruise itself, though, AMAZING. Of course, my mother and I are both fluent in German, so we understood everything, all the announcements, all the signs, etc. However I don't agree with whoever said non-Germans were not welcomed. Every week there's a group of between 100-200 Maltese on board the Mein Schiff, they have their own tour leader aboard, and they seemed happy whenever we chatted with them. Why do so many Maltese go on the Mein Schiff cruises? I suspect the reason is the all-inclusive concept, which was one of my reasons for choosing the cruise - to give an example, it's not just the usual pizza/pasta/burgers that are free (and being Germans, some sausage too), but two huge restaurants with varieties of dining, and a snack bar, a pizza place, a tapas bar. Talking about the buffet alone, you had so many varieties of food, whether meat and potatoes, salads, pasta, etc. My highlight was a Wok station where you could choose noodles/rice, different fresh meats (duck, beef, etc) or fish, veg, sauces, and the chefs would stir-fry it there and then. And the breakfasts! OMG, the breakfasts. Oh dear. I must stop writing about food, but just let me mention that on the last day at sea there was a champagne and caviar breakfast. Yes, as part of the inclusive breakfast. For those who prefer to get their nutrients in liquid fashion, all the bars were fee-free, except for some items, clearly marked on the menu, which you had to pay extra for. My mum and I worked our way through a whole list of cocktails, with or without alcohol, all without shelling out an extra penny. Our balcony cabin was comfortable and clean, and every evening Fedel, our cabin attendant left a choccy on our beds! I do have some niggles - yes, Germans do have a habit of racing to any dining area 2 minutes before opening time and then occupying their seats until the restaurant closes. And Maltese in large groups can be pretty loud and obnoxious. The only thing that really bothered me and I couldn't shrug off that easily were the children. So many children packing the relatively small pool day in day out. And even as I complain, I remember my last day when I was feeling a bit low and three preteen German kids gave me a ship newsletter they had prepared during their stay - so, I guess they weren't so bad, either. I wasn't too happy with the excursions organized by our local agency - they showed the typical Maltese obsession with packing as many sights and visits into one trip so as to feel we got value for money. All I got out of it was tendinitis of my Achilles heel tendon (my most hated tendon, now) which I'm still feeling now. I do agree with another reviewer that the tendering was a bit of a pain in the neck, but what can you do? I would recommend this to anyone who feels like a holiday where they can be pampered for a few days! Read Less
Sail Date August 2012
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