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3 Uniworld Russia River Cruise Reviews

This was my third Uniworld Cruise and it was disappointing. The boarding process was efficient and luggage was delivered quickly. The rooms are very small. Storage is adequate. The bathroom was very small and limited shelf and storage. The ... Read More
This was my third Uniworld Cruise and it was disappointing. The boarding process was efficient and luggage was delivered quickly. The rooms are very small. Storage is adequate. The bathroom was very small and limited shelf and storage. The shower was so small that when I dropped a small razor, I had to turn off the water, open the door, and step out to be able to pick it up. On previous Uniworld cruises, the excursions were included - usually 2 per day. Not so on this one. There were several “optionals” to purchase. This is where they really seemed to rip us off. For example, they charged $83 per person to take us to the Fabrege Museum in St Petersburg, Russia. We sat with a couple at dinner one night,who had gone on their own and paid $10 per person and had a guide. You expect a cruise line to charge a little more - but 8 times more??? Dinner service was very slow. One night, we got bread and waited 30 minutes before anything else was served. For the most part, the food was good. Sometimes, the guides were a bit unorganized. Based on my I would NOT recommend this cruise, I don’t like to be taken advantage of like we were with optional excursions. Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
Arrived at St Petersburg one day early, took a cab to the hotel we booked online, then took a cab to the boat dock the next day. No problems and STP is easy if you are within walking distance of the City Centre, as we were. English widely ... Read More
Arrived at St Petersburg one day early, took a cab to the hotel we booked online, then took a cab to the boat dock the next day. No problems and STP is easy if you are within walking distance of the City Centre, as we were. English widely spoken. If you are using taxis, write (or have somebody write) the address in Russian. Even better, spend part of a week learning Russian Cyrillic before you leave home (it's very easy, although you may not know the Russian word once you translate it). This will save you tons of time when looking for restaurants, etc. Google Maps does NOT show the boat dock address correctly (it shows the address in the middle of an industrial road, under a highway bridge a half mile away from the correct location!). All of the boat staff were Russian, except for the concierge, who was Bulgarian. Absolutely great service and enthusiasm - five stars for the staff!. The guides were great, the buses pretty new and we took advantage of all the "Do as the Locals do" tours and walking alternatives (instead of busses). Food was always great. Lots of non-meat alternatives. Breakfast & Lunches (and some late dinners after the ballet or other shows) were buffet-style. Wine was like other cruises, just so-so. Older well-traveled crowd, no children. No pool, walking deck, kid-type games; this cruise is for adults who aren't afraid to travel and interact with other cultures. Everything perfectly safe and enjoyable. This was our ninth cruise (fifth river cruise) and, except for a small-boat cruise down the interior Amazon, probably the best. Fairly basic on-board facilities, especially for a Uniworld cruise. Very small fitness room and library. Massage was just OK. Very nice 24-hour coffee/cookie rooms which we used every morning. Onboard entertainment was simple but very nice; nightly musical concerts from a pianist and/or a saxophone player and/or a balalaika player and/or two singers. Daily lectures about Russian history and culture which were frank, open and extremely well done. Three days in St Petersburg were not enough (we actually had four, because we arrived early) and three days in Moscow also not enough. The week on the rivers (we were on four) was a good break from the cities; small towns, more free time, interesting rural river views. The weather in late June varied from the low 60's to the mid 80's. We are fairly well-traveled (over sixty countries to-date) and we enjoyed every stop and tour. If you're main interest is the boat - plush, super-comfortable cruise facilities - you will probably be disappointed. If you are looking to preliminarily explore Russia in a comfortable and safe manner with helpful staff, and great guides, you can't miss with this cruise. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
this is my 8th river cruise w/uniworld. I was picked up at the airport and whisked to the ship in time for dinner. I realize river Victoria was rented, but from experience I expected better experience. the dining room staff didn't ... Read More
this is my 8th river cruise w/uniworld. I was picked up at the airport and whisked to the ship in time for dinner. I realize river Victoria was rented, but from experience I expected better experience. the dining room staff didn't speak English yet a server told me they were all students picked because of their English language skills then trained to serve. the dining room manager told me they were difficult to supervise because they were not a team. dinner usually took 3 hours due to the very slow service and complaining to the manager didn't help. it was also difficult to get needs met when no one but the manager spoke English. the food was ho-hum. the menu had one meat, one fish and one vegetarian whereas the cruises in Germany also had a 'healthy choice' and if you didn't like anything on the menu there were also steak, chicken, caeser salad etc. offerings. Uniworld had brought a senior chef from Germany, but that didn't help. still mediochre fare. I always get a class 2 or 3 cabin and I was pleased to have a balcony, but when we cruised north from Moscow it was too cold and rainy to sit there. big disappointment since one of the pleasures of river cruising for me is having my morning espresso on the balcony and watching the sunrise. as well as the cold we sailed on two lakes in northern Russia where the wind blew so hard the shipped rocked. one of the reasons I river cruise is to avoid seasickness. it's the first time on any river cruise I had to take Dramamine. the itinerary was too exhausting. the first day we left the ship at 8:30 and returned at 5 pm. unpleasant after a long plane ride and jetlag. besides the length half the day was spent in gum mall and Ararat shopping street. boring. on cruises in france or Germany uniworld only spent half day touring and then you could return to the town for the rest of the day or relax on the ship. besides the shopkeepers in the mall didn't speak English and souveneer stands had limited and standard items always offering nesting dolls, fridge magnets, postcards etc. the next day was just as long and since I do not believe 'more is better' I don't even remember what we did after the kremlin museum, I enjoy museums and art galleries, but over the yrs I have learned cramming too much into a day brings info overload and I don't retain what I saw in the museum. when we cruised north the days were either too long or spent shopping. arriving in st. Petersburg there were morning tours w/ optional tours in the afternoon. the cruise manager pushed the options on me, but I don't push easily. I took one option, the peter and paul fort, because I chose not to attend the ballet in the evening. the highlight for me was 'the hermitage w/ the option to return to the ship at 3 or 4 pm. i signed up for 4 and returned at 3 pm., tired but happy. the cruise ended poorly for me. I had arranged my own transfer to stay in a hotel near the hermitage and half way there realized we had not received notification to pick up our passports so i had to return to the ship. up until then I found the front desk staff helpful. part of my disappointment was cold and rainy Russia which is not uniworld's fault. the other half was I had come to expect excellence from uniworld (i've tried Viking) not exhausting itineraries and poor food/dining service. on the whole the front desk staff were helpful and courteous as was the dining room manager, the hotel manager and cruise manager. I cannot, however recommend this tour and it has soured my impression of uniworld. my eighth cruise may be my last. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
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