Having sailed once before in the Caribbean with Star Flyer we decided on taking it across the Atlantic. The 23 day crossing was a combination of Malaga, Spain to Las Palmas, Gran Canaria (9 days) and Las Palmas to Barbados (14 days). Due to popularity it was over a year from booking to sailing. Cabin 121. 80% of passengers are repeat.
We arrived in Malaga 4 days before the cruise, allowing time to adjust from the west coast of the US. Our hotel was a few blocks from the harbor and we were able to walk to the boat rolling our bags. check in was at 4 but you could store your bags at the pier starting at 12 noon.
The first 9 days we took 2 tours, bus to Marrakesh from Safi and tour of Lanzarote. Tour to Marrakesh was disappointing, tour guide wanted to make sure we shopped "his store" (for a kick back?) so all else was rushed to get to his shops. Lanzarote tour to volcano park was much better.
Seas were rough two days especially the Safi to Lanzarote day at sea; this is normal. Also quite chilly needed a sweatshirt and a wind breaker. Meals were good; breakfast and lunch are a buffet, dinner is a menu, all meals are open seating. No formal wear required.
The 14 day trip started in Las Palmas, the Canary Islands. Some passengers left here others boarded. No shore excursion is offered, but town is an easy walk from the pier; there is also a multi story shopping mall next to the dock area. 139 passengers made the crossing.
Every day it got warmer, seas were rough (15-20 ft swells) at La Gomera and the port was dropped as the pilot could not board. 95% of the cruise was under sail, a record for the captain. To sit and watch the sails in the wind a fantastic experience.
We saw whales, dolphins and lots of rainbows. Had an oil rig towed passed us in the middle of the Atlantic. On board entertainment consists of the piano player/singer; passengers playing darts, board games and cards. There is a talent show, toga party, pirate night and Neptune party. When you have the night sky full of stars, the ocean waves ever changing during the day the entertainment takes a back seat to mother nature.
Would we do it again? YES, YES, YES.
Two twin beds (made as a double for cruise) and a third berth that would fold down above head of bed. Three small wardrobe closets. First has rack to hang dresses and longer garments with top shelf. Second has a clothes rod( men's shirts just make it) there is a safe and three shelves. Last closet is all shelves. Desk has two open shelves. TV/VCR on wall mount. Bathroom is small but adequate, shampoo, body lotion and body wash provided. Shower head can be hand held making it easy to wash while trying to balance in rough weather. Small bedside table has minimal storage and luggage fit under bed. Only thing lacking was a clock.
Stayed at Hotel Venecia, Malaga. Older hotel but very clean and some street noise. Took the breakfast plan, typical European breakfast, yogurt, cereal, breads, meat, cheese and great coffee. Walking distance of harbor, Alcazaba and Picasso Museum. Harbor area has small shops, Burger king and Hard Rock cafe.
We took the Hop on and off bus from just outside the port security gate. Took you out to newer section of Cadiz and back through the old town. Good choice of stops to see the church and sea side fortresses.
Tour included stops in National Park and the wine growing region . The winery did have a small gift shop. Good guide and scenery was great. Photo stops allowed adequate time to take pictures.View All 23 Timanfaya National Park Reviews
Shore excursions only offered to departing passengers. Town is within walking distance and has a Hop on and Off bus. We walked through town, main square ringed with shops and small cafes was interesting. There are lots of sculptures and museums you can walk to. Modern multi level shopping center on way to town has am array of eateries and clothing/jewelry stores.
Basic island sightseeing and a drop at the airport. Stopped at Sunbury plantation for lunch. It was a good way to enjoy the day before our flight back to the US. Food at Sunbury included a rum punch and good local fare. Stop at Bathsheba for photos.View All 35 Scenic Drive Reviews