We picked this cruise for a number of reasons. The dates fitted in with dates I had booked well in advance (without knowing what we were going to do in the summer) to please my work, the itinerary, and by reading several reviews that the line was good for families and kids. 14 days is a long time for a 10 year old to be onboard so it had to be fun for him too, which I am happy to report it was.
Embarkation was smooth enough but as we had a few smaller bags rather than a couple of big bags they insisted that we took on the "hand luggage". Disembarkation was not so smooth and Port of Tyne were making a hash of it and being rude with it. Ramming as many as they could on the car park shuttle buses for example and siting on the quay for 10 mins while they could have got a full load to the car park and back in this time.
Ship was lovely. Nothing too fancy but very clean kept and run throughout. She is big enough to have plenty on her but you will still only be meeting people for the "first" time it seems on the day you are leaving which is the down fall of larger ships.
Overall very good. For some reason I was expecting the cabin to be bigger and was tight with the sofa bed down, i.e. you could not get out to the balcony when the bed was out.
Staff were amazing. Everything very clean and tidy.
Stern area was a little "twitchy" for such a large vessel and would maybe be wary about aft cabins on lower decks but this is just a hunch. She is not Diesel Electric like most modern ships so there is more vibration and when they change engine configuration (i.e. start an engine if they need more speed) this is noticeable.
I have been here before so it was nice to show the family around. Ship berthed very close to city which was idea. Lovely sail out Oslofjord at night.
I had been here before so it was nice to show the family around. Shuttle bus required into town which is small enough to walk around and see the majority of it. Ship tied up beside the Volvo museum which we ended up having time to see as the shuttle back was quick and by the fact it was right on the quayside. More interesting that you would think!
Stayed overnight and very enjoyable, arrived around an hour early and was on the ship by the time it said for first check in.
Simply stunning city. We walked around the old town which took at the available time. Good 15 min walk from the ship.
A very nice place but felt a little flat (on a Sunday Morning) after the beauty and madness of Russia.
Good transfer bus laid on.
The surprise of the trip. We were expecting this to have been the low light of the trip but was anything but. A lovely little town with a great beach, lovely canal full of bars and restaurants. Great train service to Rostock (which we took) and ship ties up 5 mins from train station and 10 min form town centre. Great port call
I have mixed up Helsinki and Stockholm and cant change it.
Stockholm is stunning but you need much more time there. We walked the old city which took our available time. Shuttle bus was laid on which was required.
Helsinki was nice, but a little flat feeling (on a Sunday Morning) after the beauty and madness of Russia.
Spoilt a little by the walk in and out of city. A lot to see and hard to do in time. A busy city and after all the cities before hand it felt a little flat in terms of not really seeing anything new as such, and knowing the cruise was coming to an end. It would likely have felt much different if it were an earlier port call.