3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
First time with cruise maritime voyages and was disappointed. I should have realized a European cruise line was not to the expectation of the US branded companies. Food was not even average and must have been tailored to the English crowd. ... Read More
First time with cruise maritime voyages and was disappointed. I should have realized a European cruise line was not to the expectation of the US branded companies. Food was not even average and must have been tailored to the English crowd. Of the 1350 passengers 95% we from UK, 2% from USA and remaining from elsewhere. Itinerary changes made to accommodate the UK flight arrangements took us from our main stop (Belize) that I had booked this a year in advance. Also while on cruise ports of call cancelled. Read what force majeure means cause they use this as there reasons to cancel without regards to your expectations. Entertainment was lacking through out and the only highlight would be the nightly ship show. Casino non existent, food & buffets had sub par quality and no variety of choices. Cabins spacoius but a/c cooling lacked. As I looked forward to sharing this time with my wife it ended up being quite boring on board and the ports we're of great relief to find something to be excited about. No frills of the ship and the age groups were of retiree. Pools we're occasionally shut down and created a boring trip. Servers were not attentative to your needs and lacked the courtesy to ensure you were pleased & had the service you expected. Hope they find improvement moving forward to 2019 but I would recommend other companies to spend your time with. Sorry CMV but wanted to give an honest review and would like to see you improve services to better cater to your Passengers. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
We booked this trip over a year ago - for the itinereary - our first time with CMV - and our last unless they come up with an exceptional route. The first port of call, Belize, was cancelled a week or so before we flew. CMV hadn't ... Read More
We booked this trip over a year ago - for the itinereary - our first time with CMV - and our last unless they come up with an exceptional route. The first port of call, Belize, was cancelled a week or so before we flew. CMV hadn't realised the chartered Virgib Atlantic flights couldn't land at the embarakation port of Cozumel due to their size. Consequently we landed at Cancun then coach to Playa Del Carmen and ferry to Cozumel adding over 5 hours to our trip after a long flight. We arrived at 8 pm - the second flight was 3 hrs later. Consequently there was no time to include Belize (which was one of the reasons we booked). Surely CMV must have known about this when they planned the cruise. Our cabin was ok and our steward exceptional. No fridge but kettle etc and good shower. The ship, despite a refurb, is nearing the end of its days The food was palapatable at best but not up to the standard of the several cruise lines we've sailed with before. It was a treat to have a live 6 piece band but the compant shows were unispiring. The 4 British singers were good and the 12 European dancers were proficient but the choreographty was samey and some of the costumes were dire. Some nights a singer had to inroduce the show and request applause at the end - where was the CD? We had two excellent guest speakers, one gave 4 lectures about the canal (and a useful commentary as we traversed the canal. The other chap gave 4 talks about photography and his travels which I enjoyed. We usually enjoy dancing on a cruise but the male of the duo in the Captains Club lounge was, quite frankly, so poor - choosing songs out of his range - that we couldn't bare to listen. The TV films in our cabin had a habit of "freezing" half way through then starting from scratch or were in a foreign language - Forrest Gump in Chinese! The daytime "activities" were uninspired and in many cases do it yourself with no cruise staff presiding. Two days before we were due to stop in Nicargua we were advised that the Foreign and Commonwealth Office only endorsed essential travel. This edict had been in place for several months and other cruise ships were callling there with no problems. Even though CMV secured a second Costa Rica port of call to replace Nicaragua they should have advised us much earlier rather than rely on a last minute change of policy. We were due to stop to refuel in Barbados on our return flight (either it was cheaper there or the plane was too heavy to take off from San Jose with a full fuel load. As soon as we took off the pilot announced that we couldn't go to Barbados as air space over Columbia was denied to us - following a car bomb in Bogata 4 days earlier. Surely Virgin Atlantic must have known before take off. We were diverted tp Montego Bay where we were told that they had no food prepared and were there any volunteers to forgo a meal. After an hour's delay hot pasta and beef was supplied - a packet of crisps for the vegetarians. Next year's CMV Panama Canal cruise already has 2 fewer ports of call. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
We booked the holiday and the advert made the cruise look very attractive. The scheduled Countries to be visited looked interesting and we were under the impression that the food on board would be good as the ship had supposedly won a ... Read More
We booked the holiday and the advert made the cruise look very attractive. The scheduled Countries to be visited looked interesting and we were under the impression that the food on board would be good as the ship had supposedly won a dining award in 2017. About 2 weeks before we were due to start our holiday we received a letter from CMV informing us that the ship would no longer be stopping at the first port of call, Belize, as a charter flight they had booked for their direct guests from the UK would be arriving late. The ship was meant to depart at 5pm, it actually departed around 1.00am the following morning as the flight arrived around midnight. Our embarkation time was 3pm and we had to walk dragging our suitcases for about 250 metres from the taxi to the ship in Cozumel. The ship is tired looking with very little in the way of hosted activities during the daytime, Knit and Natter was about as good as it got! The cabin was small and although we paid extra for a sea view, I think only about 6 suites had balconies. Dining was awful! We were allocated a set table in the Kensington restaurant at 8:30 every evening. On the whole the food was nowhere near the standard one would expect on a cruise ship. All but 2 of the fish dishes were poorly cooked and tasteless. Most of the starters were poor quality, for example the Thai Seafood salad didn’t have a hint of Thai herbs & spices and consisted of chopped up white fish sticks with a couple of mussels in salad cream. The restaurant ceiling in the Waldorf was leaking water and the crew had stuck a cling-film type material on the ceiling to try and stop guests being showered. We had one good meal, surf & turf which we paid extra for. The so called Indian Fusion at extra cost was awful, butter chicken and some fairly uninspiring vegetable dishes and a stale rolled up popadom. The evening show was excellent, other than the comedian. The orchestra and show team were really good, as were the pianists and violinist in the bar. The duet in the Captains bar were flat so we avoided that bar after the first evening. Our cabin steward was excellent and would always take time to chat with us. The restaurant and bar staff, with a few exceptions did not seem a happy bunch. The waiter on our table was okay but the wine waiter was slow and forgot to bring drinks that someone on our table ordered. The day before we were due to dock in Nicaragua, it was announced that the ship would not be stopping there as the UK Foreign Office had advised there was a risk of street violence. It was not made clear how long this advice had been in force. We stopped at an alternative port in Costa Rica, which was mainly for container ships. Not attractive at all and apart from a few market stalls and a beach crowded with locals there was nothing to do unless one had booked a trip. The port in Colon, Columbia was in a slum area, which we travelled through on a trip to the Gatun Lakes. We travelled as a couple in our early 60’s and this was the worst holiday we have ever experienced anywhere in the world. We would certainly not book on a CMV ship again. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
My friend and I thought this would be a fun way to check out Cruise & Maritime's Magellan ship. Plus we thought it was a pretty good offer, £99 for dinner, a show, an overnight stay and breakfast the next day. We actually ... Read More
My friend and I thought this would be a fun way to check out Cruise & Maritime's Magellan ship. Plus we thought it was a pretty good offer, £99 for dinner, a show, an overnight stay and breakfast the next day. We actually splashed out and upgraded to a Superior Plus Twin Ocean View cabin so it cost us £129 each. We came by train. The weather was atrocious (not Cruise & Maritime's fault) and no taxi rank at Tilbury Town station. You have a short walk to a cab office hidden beside a fish and chip shop. We were very pleased to find a lounge offering tea and coffee plus snacks that you could buy while waiting to board the ship. Embarkation seemed relatively painless, we were in the first group, A, to board the ship. You still have the usual nonsense of them wanting to take your photo and holding up the queue. You're not shown to your cabin by an individual but there are crew on every deck to help you find your way. The atmosphere on the ship seemed very jolly. Not as many Christmas decorations as we would have expected especially in the dining room, the Kensington restaurant. There were 3 sittings for dinner and we had the first at 5.45. I was quite glad of that because I suspect if we'd been on the last sitting, I would have drunk quite a lot by the time that rolled around. I think that happened to a lot of people. There were certainly a lot of merry people later on. Everyone seemed to make an effort to dress up for the occasion. Some ladies looked very glamorous and a few men were wearing tuxedos and bow ties (older men). You had the obligatory photos taken at your table. I don't know what happened to the welcome cocktail because we never received one. My friend doesn't drink so got one diet coke for the entire meal, which I thought was a little mean of them as they said, half a bottle of wine per person. The quality of the meal was ok. I wouldn't say outstanding. That did surprise me a little because it is Cruise and Maritime's chance to show you how good they are. I'm gluten free and the menu did show everything that you can request to be gluten free. I was pleasantly surprised when I received two slices of gluten free bread without having to ask for it. However, when ordering our choices, our waiter skipped past the salad course and implied you couldn't have it. So, we were surprised when we saw other people having it at the next table. So, our 5 course dinner was only a 4 course one. I had to have cheese to end with and the portions of cheese were very small. They looked a bit sad on my gluten free cracker. My friend and I ended up on a table for six by ourselves. We made the most of it but I did feel a little conspicuous. I'm not sure if I'm being unreasonable to think CMV might have done something about it once they realised no one else was turning up. There was a parade of the baked Alaska pudding and the chefs came out and went round as well, which guests enjoyed. I regret now not making the most of the limited time available to view the different types of cabins. We managed to get to see one suite, which had a disabled bathroom. The suite was nice but again, seemed quite small to me. It is good that CMV offer this. They did have some discounts if you booked a cruise while onboard but not a great discount and I don't know how people would have found the time. We went to the first show. The theatre is impressive, much nicer than the one on the Marella Spirit (now no longer sailing). The show, was quite fun and a couple of the young singers had good voices. Overall, not outstanding. The drinks waiters in the theatre were very prompt and efficient. We then visited a couple of the bars and had a walk around the ship to get a feel for it. Our favourite bar was the Captain's Club and Sinatra's Bar. The latter had someone playing the piano for a little while, which was nice. Drink prices were reasonable. There did seem to be plenty of bars. The spa looked nice and the prices for treatments looked reasonable. We went back to our cabin about 11, which was silly of us. We should have stayed up later as we got woken up several times by noisy, late-night revellers returning to their cabins. The next morning, we made the mistake of going to the Kensington restaurant as only 1 floor up from us. It was packed and there was an announcement soon, saying that there was no more room and advising guests to go to the Waldorf or the Raffles Bistro for breakfast. You had to queue quite a while to get your breakfast. Also, the nearest Ladies to the Kensington has only 3 toilets, which is ridiculous. You are asked to leave your cabin by 7.00 a.m. and disembark by 9.00 - 9.30. We disembarked quite early. A very nice CMV staff member ordered us a taxi. The cab driver told us that we were sensible to go early as he said it gets mad at the cruise terminal around 9.30. Overall, I enjoyed our stay although a little disappointed about the meal. I think it'd be a fun event for a group to go to. The ship reminded me of the Marella (formerly TUI) Spirit that I sailed on this summer. I'm sure that CMV is making money out of these events but not that it's succeeding in its primary purpose, to persuade people to go on a cruise with them. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
A cruise around the Canaries and the Caribbean over Xmas/New Year sounded idillic. Alas, it proved totally the opposite, mainly boring due to lack of organised entertainment during "at sea" days which could be four days in a ... Read More
A cruise around the Canaries and the Caribbean over Xmas/New Year sounded idillic. Alas, it proved totally the opposite, mainly boring due to lack of organised entertainment during "at sea" days which could be four days in a row. Furthermore, we found ourselves on a ship built over 33 years ago, so very outdated. We experieced rough seas between UK and Lisbon and the ship could not cope and rolled like a cork. Only the islands of Madeira, Antigua and Cozulmel were of interest. So much for visitng the Caribbean? Our cabin was very small and did not represent anything like in the cruise brochure.It was stuffy with faulty air conditioning, no window to open and there was a constant smell of nausiating food and kitchen in the hallway and cabin. On arrival in Las Palmas we went out an bought ourselves a fan for the cabin. On arrival back home we had to wash every item of clothing, even new clothing not worn to try and get rid of the horrible food/kitchen smell. The only bright aspect of the cabin was the excellent steward from Honduras called Nelson. The food was terrible. At one lunchtime sitting, all 8 of us on the table left the food and told the Manager to throw it overboard along with the chef. Yes it was that bad. The highlight each evening was the 45 minute show in the in the Magellan Show Lounge. The ship has its own group of about 8 dancers and 6 singers and they put on a great show each evening. The singers were superb. They are worthy of being on a major cruise liner. Another pre-dinner highlight was the classical recital in the Hampton's Bar with a lovely pianist and an excellen violinist. There was nightly entertaiment in the Captains Club if you can call the duo, Derya & Tolga entertainment as neither could sing in tune and we often completely off key. Another complaint is the scam tactics of the barmen who give short measure with wine drinks. I sent my so-called 250ml drinks back more than 20 times for top-up and not once was there any objection from a barman? They need glasses with measurement amounts shown on the glass to stop this practise. The ports of call, with the exception of Madeira, Antigua & Cozumel were a complete waste of time. Cape Verde was stepping into the a poor third world country with filth and poverty everywhere. We were happy to reach Cozumel at the end of the cruise and disembark, but we still had organisational disasters. It took almost a whole day to get from Cozumel to Cancun airport. Then there was a 2 hour flight delay. This was made worse by having to sit on the bus at Gatwick to take us back to Tilbury for over one hour. Upon arrival back at Tilbury Docks we found all our cars unaccessable due to being advised where to park by the cruise car parking attendants. The police were called who removed a fence and help us, one by one to break free. My car was in a far corner and it took 2 hours before I was out. Need I say that my crusing days are over and it you decide to cruise I suggest you made sure it is not on the Magellan. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2018
I do not normally publish criticism however iwas gravely disappointed with this trip. As an opportunity to visit the Belgian Christmas markets and pre evaluate the Magellan ahead of booking am iceland tour i am glad i did. I ... Read More
I do not normally publish criticism however iwas gravely disappointed with this trip. As an opportunity to visit the Belgian Christmas markets and pre evaluate the Magellan ahead of booking am iceland tour i am glad i did. I appreciate iam used to the celebrity and Royal Caribbean experience but this was ahuge step down I terms of experience. Embarking was slick, no problems and kept well to time. Impresssed. Cabin. The size of my seaview cabin was fine, the protruding ciachman needs which sick or even when closed was the cause of a few bumped heads but not a real problem. Very clean throughout. Thank you to Olga. General ship experience. The ship is ok, it is abut of a midpoint between a cruise ship and a ferry but ok. Obviously too cold for the unheated sea water pool which had been drained. Food. This was one area which hugely disappointed. The breakfast range was three however the quality of good was not great. Croissants did not appear fresh, more like the long life croissants you can buy in a supermarket. Black scarred bananas, dry muffins also below par. The main restaurant food was generally acceptable but not that impressive. All edible but certainly not melt in the mouth meat for example. Additionally, availability of snacks and cold drinks was very poor. From closure of the main restaurant there was no cold drink available (not even water unless you want to drink from your bathroom tap which is not for me! ) unless purchased as as extra cost from the bar. No access to savoury snacks or even biscuits afterdinner. Only Cakes available for purchase in one bar. Formal night declared on pre cruise information brought formal wear to find Only very casual nights. Entertainment. I am afraid the cast tried valiently but the show was poor in comparison to what we have previously experienced. Long gaps between songs which did not flow from one to another, weak and unfortunately, fairly average vocals i would place in a holiday camp. (Far far better than anything i can achieve i acknowledge and not meant as a personal attack on the artists). Really nice theatre though. Excursion to brussels. Your guide Bob was very good. Knowledgeable, engaging and helpful. A good day out. Disembarkation Asked to vacate cabin before 07.30 although disembarkation scheduled for post 9.30. The ship is laid up for several days before next trip so not sure why it was necessary to crowd lounges unnecessarily either. In essence i would suggest as a first cruise experience this is an acceptable trip but if you have enjoyed the more refined offerings of the likes of royal Caribbean or celebrity this will probably not hit the mark. The cruise came in a little cheaper than the big players but to be honest when you add what you spend on the 'Missing extras' like cold drinks it works out pretty much the same cost. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2018
We have just arrived home after back to back cruise on Magellan we did the Christmas Market cruise to Rouen and Honfleur . Before the cruise started we were told that there would be no Christmas market at Honfleur it started the day ... Read More
We have just arrived home after back to back cruise on Magellan we did the Christmas Market cruise to Rouen and Honfleur . Before the cruise started we were told that there would be no Christmas market at Honfleur it started the day after we visited how can CMV make a mistake like this . On arriving at Tilbury we had paid for car parking I find it hard to believe that there were no blue badge spaces for wheelchair users we were expected to leave my wife at the terminal while I parked the car in the docks and got a bus back this is not good enough .We spoked to a car park attendant who let us park outside the port , when we booked through CMV we were told that we could not park outside the port as there was building work going on , when we arrived there was no building work going on , there should be blue badge spaces for the disabled out side the port. We were on the boat in under 30 minutes , the food was very good only problem it took 30 minutes to find a seat. The cabin no 6153 was a good size plenty of draw space . The only problem was the air conditioning was blowing out cold air we told the steward twice nothing done about it went to reception next day still nothing done went to reception again in the evening finally they got someone to look at it and he could not fix it so we were cold all the time this is not good enough CMV must have known that it didn't work we spoke to many people whose heating never worked . ROUEN Were told the evening before that there would be a shuttle bus to take us into town and we needed to get a ticket at 3pm wo we arrived at 2.25pm most of the ships passengers were there then it was announced over the tannoy that tickets would not be issued till 3.30 we got our tickets at 4.10 on bus no 22 so we said we would get a taxi .Why was we not given the bus tickets the evening before with the daily information paper like other cruise lines then we would not have to que for so long. We were told by a member of staff that there were 3 steps at the bottom of the gangway and that we would be helped down when we got to deck 5 there were hundreds of people thereafter 25min we got to the gangway then we see that the gangway was all steps so I went to find somebody to help after 30 min someone came all while my wife is sitting by the gangway getting cold and bumped into they said that 4 crew would carry her down the steps I was not happy about this that is really health and safety I said that we would not go ashore (we have been on over 30 cruises this is the first time we have not been able to go ashore). I make an appointment to see the Captain or Cruise Director in the end we saw the Guest Services manager we explained to him what had happened and how my wife had felt he didn't want to know just saying they would have carried her down the steps not taking into account how my wife felt she was terrified but he didn't seem to care about that .There was no reason that I could see as to why a flat gangway could not be used. I also said that if that when he was announcing about the tickets he should have said that there were steps to get off boat and that wheelchairs could not get off then we would not have to waste 3 hours and all the problems. The next day we had got breakfast but not started to eat it when there was a announcement they were using a flat gangway but would be changing it for steps in 15 minutes time so we left our breakfast and rushed to deck 5 we got off no problem there was a shuttlebus but no romps for wheelchairs so we had to walk a mile to town no thought again from CMV. Arrived back at ship and step gangway no crew members there to help so I had to go onboard to get some help we waited for 35 minutes for them to show up it was really cold they couldn't care less my wife was eventually carried on board. So we had been on a Christmas Markets cruise but had not seen a Christmas market NOT GOOD ENOUGTH. We cancelled our tips which I think most of the passengers done .We stayed on the ship for the next cruise to Antwerp this cruise was no problem we had the same cabin so cabin was still cold still nothing done about it .Talking about the cold deck 9 was always cold with a lot of people sitting in there coats many people complained but nothing done about it. And to top it off when we were leaving the ship at Tilbury crew members stood and watched me struggle getting off with the ramps and slops they didn't offer to help me they just watched. So will we travel with CMV again NEVER they do not care about disabled people Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
We chose this trip as we wanted to see Norway and the Northern lights. When we got to Tibury we were sent round in circles. The signs were few and far between and not very well positioned. We followed the signs only to be told that we ... Read More
We chose this trip as we wanted to see Norway and the Northern lights. When we got to Tibury we were sent round in circles. The signs were few and far between and not very well positioned. We followed the signs only to be told that we were in the wrong area. It was like Custers last stand! There were cars going round and round in circles all being in the wrong place. We finally got to the right area and had to sit under a marquee with rain, whipped up by high winds, blowing through!! The first impression of the ship wasn't good. It looked pretty unkempt . We were on deck 7 and the smell of sewage and fuel oil was overwhelming . I made a comment to one off the crew and we were told " It's an old ship " and that this was it's last trip before a refit. The smell got worse over the next 4 days particularly when the Captain made a decision to sail with a force 11 predicted!! We had 7/8 metre waves and hurricane force winds. This was a full day at sea. The opinion if the guests was that we shouldn't have sailed. The smell after was REVOLTING. It made your eyes sting and you held your breath until you got away from the stairwell. The food was bland and pretty much the same every day. The trouble was seating. There simply wasnt enough seats and tables to cater for everybody. We had to sit on the window sills on two occasions!! They were constantly running out of cutlery and crockery. Mugs were at a premium. The room staff were SUPERB, as were the waiters, but other bar staff had a couldn't care less attitude. We were served the wrong drinks numerous times and had our cards swapped on 3 occasions. The shows were, well what do I say?. Queen tribute night summed it up. The backing ' band' were terrible. The 4 singers went from English to their native tounge if the couldn't remember the words. I didn't know if to laugh or cry! We walked out after the third song. Some people did say they enjoyed it to be fair. The comedian we saw had the oldest jokes you could think of. To make matters worse he tried to play the guitar! He couldn't keep up with the back music AND played out of time and time. The tours were good and we saw the Northern lights, which was the reason for the cruise. The tour guides were very helpful. We wouldn't sail again on the Meggelan. I know this was it's last trip and it showed, but it just lacked the things that make it a nice ship. Perhaps after a refit things might be different. But going on our experience, this was a outdated old smelly ship and had we known that, we wouldn't have booked it. Read Less
18 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
Back in May 2017, my wife and I decided to take a chance and booked to sail on CMV Magellan to see the3 Northern Lights. We choose this cruise because we liked the itinerary, the chance to see the Northern Lights and that it is a smaller ... Read More
Back in May 2017, my wife and I decided to take a chance and booked to sail on CMV Magellan to see the3 Northern Lights. We choose this cruise because we liked the itinerary, the chance to see the Northern Lights and that it is a smaller (and older) ship. We have sailed on 8 other occasions from Australia using P & O and Princess Lines and from Southampton using P & O. Apart from our first cruise which was an older ship holding around 1200 passengers the other ships had around 2,000 - 2,700 and they were crowded and busy on every public deck and eatery. We choose to purchase the premium package and found this financially very beneficial as we were given an upgrade from a guaranteed outside cabin to a superior twin outside cabin (6199) as well as including the tips and a couple of free bottle of wine. (We opened 1 bottle but preferred to drink in the bars so we left the other bottle unopened in our cabin at the end of the cruise. Embarkation We also choose the return bus ride from Victoria Coach station to get us to and from the ship. This was a good and cheap option as the bus took us straight to the ship for embarkation and as we had received an email that the ship would be sailing an hour earlier than originally planned (This was the first day after the change of time for daylight savings) and from a different wharf, we didn't have to worry knowing the ship would have to wait for us if we were late. Of course we were not late but as we were one of the last to arrive embarkation for us was quick and easy. We were through and on the ship within 15 minutes. Once on board we were given our cruise card and pointed to our deck and room which we had to find for ourselves. The ship uses a separate card for entry to your room which was disappointing that the cruise card couldn't be used to open your cabin door. So for the entire cruise we had to have our cruise card for drinks and a room card to get into our cabin. This was an inconvenience that we soon got used to. Cabin Our cabin no. 6199 was spacious we thought with a large window on the Starboard side. It had one of the best showers we have had on a ship with good strong flow and plenty of hot water that stayed inside the shower recess and did not go onto the bathroom floor and the mirror did not fog up!!! There was good closet space, although we did have to ask for an additional 20 coat hangers that were promptly provided. We hung all our clothes up and had 2 large empty suitcases that didn't fit under the beds so we placed them against the wall and that was fine. Even though we were at the back of the ship on deck 6, throughout the cruise we DID NOT have any strange smells in our cabin and the ONLY engine noise we had was when the ship engines started up or slowed down to pick up the pilot and this would last only for about 20 minutes but was not too obtrusive. It didn't bother us. Ship Naturally we explored the ship and like every other ship we have been on the layouts are very similar with bars, showroom, general entertainment areas, public areas, dining areas, photography, shopping and pool and deck areas. The main restaurants, a small cocktail lounge, table tennis and shopping areas (Small and limited in stock compared to other ships but we found some items that we bought) were on deck 8. On Deck 9 were the bars (plenty and all good) and other drinking areas, small casino and a coffee lounge. Deck 10 had the bistro and main deck area which was rarely used during our cruise due to the time of year and some weather conditions on some sailing days. The ship was easy enough to get around and while some may say the colour scheme may be outdated it was all good and functional and did not detract from our experience of an older ship. Some people would be excited and call it "retro" it depends on your perspective. Entertainment. After reading ship reviews and watching some you tube videos on the showroom entertainment we were worried as it didn't look exciting. How wrong we were!! The 4 main singers CAN sing and sing very well. The only observance I would say is that not all of the songs they sang I thought best displayed their voices and the ad-libbing by the males between songs needed to be improved. There is also a 6 piece live band that accompanies the singers who were FANTASTIC! I will make special mention of the violinist who played many solos and accompanied a pianist in one of the cocktail bars as he was OUTSTANDING!! One of the singers had her own night singing opera. She was fantastic and received a standing ovation. This was the last night of the cruise and she is spectacular singer. The dancers were also great and in particular a couple of the male dancers did some outstanding Russian dancing moves. The costumes were very colourful and exciting. Sometimes the choreography was a bit basic but overall there were some of the best shows we have seen on a cruise ship. On four nights we had 2 comedians, one was funny enough for me while the other one was probably past his best, but did say 2 funny lines when he did an adlib. Overall we looked forward each night to the shows. Activities & Guest Speakers The only activities that interested us were the Guest Speakers, The Star man talking about the stars and the Northern Lights was very fascinating and passionate about his studies, The Whale man was a bit dry for me and the craft person, we weren’t interested in. The shipboard activities weren’t to our liking much except some of the quizzes, although I didn’t think it was good when you self-marked your own quiz. The late night entertainment was reasonable at times but again the ad lobbing by some of the singers when hosting wasn’t good at all. The disco for us was also a bit disappointing as the music wasn’t always to our liking. But for other passengers, the game shows were well attended to and they obviously liked them. The cruise entertainment director David was fantastic and full of energy and new when to take the Mickey out of passenger contestants. His personality and style helped make the cruise! Around the bars, the music and singers were good and relaxing. Passengers were dancing and enjoying listening as we did to the pianist and violinist in the Hampton’s Lounge before and after dinner. The captain was seen regularly walking around and talking to passengers. We had a chat to him when someone we were sitting with thought he was a drinks waiter and asked him for a drink. The Captain was the most approachable and friendly Captain we have had on any of our cruises. He had a personality, told some jokes and we congratulated him on his steering of the ship through the hurricane winds. He then explained what he did and why he did it and the ships ability to cope in simple terms. The Captain also told us that during his previous 16 trips to Alta in Norway he had never seen the Northern Lights until this cruise. He also said that many of his visits to Norway were during the warmer months. Dining We dined each evening in late session in the Kensington Restaurant placed on a table of 8. We had marvellous table guests and we all got on very well. This helps to make a cruise if you dine with people you get on with. We had a lot of laughs and good conversation. Each evening the 6 course meals were delicious and filling. The variety and quality for our meals were outstanding. For me it was hard to choose which main meal I wanted so I would ask our waiter each night for his recommendation and to surprise me. He did very well and I enjoyed all of my meals. Our drinks waiter was also very good having my glass of red waiting for me each evening. The waiters were very popular on our table. We had breakfast and most lunches at the Bistro. We found if it was very busy just wait 20 minutes and there would be plenty of tables. The food quality and variety was reasonable here without being outstanding. Sometimes they were short of coffee mugs or replacing meals but serving so many people this can happen and you just wait a few moments. I will say that I didn’t like the breakfast sausages. To me they didn’t taste too good but, most of the passengers were eating them. The Cruise, Ports and Excursions. To us the Magellan has character and charm and is not busy with too many passengers. It is easy to get around and even though we travelled through a Gale Force 11, 120kmph Hurricane winds with 7-9 metre waves for 20 hours on our first full sailing day, WE LOVED OUR CRUISE. We later spoke to the Captain on his remarkable handling of the ship during the hurricane winds. He told us that he knew the capabilities of the ship and that it could take plenty more before it became a concern. He said he had the ship listing at 60 degrees to tackle the winds as the ship could go to an 85 degree list safely. He also said that land during this time was still over 150 miles away so he would have to have gone further into the winds to go to a port and the n the remaining itinerary would have to have been changed to allow us to return to England on time. We have no problems on the decisions he made that day. The Ports we visited were wonderful with Bergan being our favourite. Alta came second because even though it snowed in the morning and we had heavy cloud all day and the tour guide said we only had a 47% chance of seeing the Northern Lights, we still saw them. The tour guide took us out at 8.00p.m to a secluded place about 55km inland and there we had a clear sky and for 2 hours we witnessed the magic and dancing lights. This was a highlight of the cruise. When we returned to the ship the Lights were still showing over the ship but not as bright as we saw them on the excursion with no town lights to distract. We also saw wild reindeer on the road as we travelled on the excursion. The coldest place we visited was the North Cape. At minus 3 and with horizontal bitting wind this was invigorating. All of the ports we visited had good and very good points of interest for us and we were glad we visited them. We saw many sights that we had never seen again and the snow-capped mountains, Fjords and wildlife was spectacular. When we booked our excursions we thought they were a bit pricey but checking local Norway websites for private tours we found the ship tours were very reasonable and value for money. Norway is an expensive place to visit with a small paper cup of instant coffee and a small coke costing 84 Krone (about 17 Australian dollars or about 8 GBP) Disembarkation For us travelling on the cruise line bus to Victoria Coach Station disembarkation was quick and easy. The ship docked at Tilbury around 8.15a.m. and we left the ship on schedule at 10.05a.m picked up our bags and got onto the bus and even though it was Remembrance Day (11/11) we had an easy drive into London, travelling over Tower Bridge, and were at Victoria by 11.30 a.m. We did see other groups waiting to disembark were running over an hour late but did not know why. Summary In summery we had a great time, we didn’t suffer any sea sickness and would easily travel on Magellan again. While I have read some other reviews of this same cruise I understand that everyone has their own expectations and experiences and any review is subjective. However, you do need to remember that this IS NOT a 5 star party ship, it is an older ship and that must be taken into consideration. You can either look at events as disappointing or you can look at them as an adventure. Looking back and at the time we thought the hurricane was an adventure to experience and say we did it. (I hope that we don’t have to do it again) My point is once you see things in a negative light it makes it difficult to enjoy the positives. The cruise, ports and excursions exceeded our expectations and as such we had a great time. Read Less
Magellan Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.0 3.8
Dining 4.0 3.6
Entertainment 3.0 3.2
Public Rooms 4.0 3.6
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.2
Family 1.0 3.2
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.5
Enrichment 3.0 3.0
Service 4.0 3.9
Value For Money 5.0 3.6

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