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Sail Date: February 2013
We booked our recent cruise on the Xpedition in May 2012 and with much anticipation finally departed the US midwest at the end of January 2013. Since we always do our own air we decided to go to Quito a few days early to both escape the ... Read More
We booked our recent cruise on the Xpedition in May 2012 and with much anticipation finally departed the US midwest at the end of January 2013. Since we always do our own air we decided to go to Quito a few days early to both escape the cold weather and to see the sights. Quito was easy to get to; a three hour flight to Miami and then four hours to Quito arriving early evening. We booked our room at the Marriott which is the same place Celebrity books people so there was no problem with accommodations. We had our own guides for the first two days and visited the Cocopaxi National Park and visited the highest volcano in the world and afterwards had lunch at a small nearby hacienda. A gourmet dinner at the Theatrum in Quito topped that day. The next day we drove with a different guide to Otavalo and Cotacachi for some shopping and sightseeing. This guide was Christian Valencia who was one of the best guides we haver ever had. The next day we joined the main group from Xpedition for tours of Quito and then the next day flew to Baltra on a charter flight. This is where the actual cruise began. The ship was perfect for this type of trip. In our case very friendly like minded North Americans, Brits and some Aussies. About 96 pax. People were interested in the Galapagos and generally more highly educated and knowledgeable. Zodiacs were the prime form of transportation to and from the ship. At least twice a day we left the ship to go ashore or snorkeling, morning and afternoon. Generally off the ship by 8 AM and back for lunch. Then back on the Zodiac mid afternoon to see more. They avoided the heat of the day and besides there was lunch to consider. Each Zodiac had a driver and a naturalist. The naturalists could not have been better! All locals with a great command of English, a good sense of humor, delight in their work, very knowledgable and especially safety conscious. We saw an exceptional amount of wildlife: land iguanas, sea iguanas, blue footed boobies, frigate birds, sea lions, crabs, sharks, rays, star fish, sea turtles, tortoises, pelicans and untold numbers of other birds. We missed whales and albatross as they were somewhere else. Breakfast and lunch were buffet with open seating and dinner was open seating with wait staff and a menu. Staff was excellent. All drinks were included but really the ship was quiet by around 10-11 PM as morning came early. This was a great trip for nature. Some agility needed but not a big deal as most hikes were easy. Snorkeling was safe and water warm. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2011
For our 20th anniversary my husband and I cruised the Galapagos on the Celebrity Xpedition in March 2011. We opted for the 10 day option which included 2 nights pre-cruise in Quito and 1 night post-cruise. I'd recommend this option ... Read More
For our 20th anniversary my husband and I cruised the Galapagos on the Celebrity Xpedition in March 2011. We opted for the 10 day option which included 2 nights pre-cruise in Quito and 1 night post-cruise. I'd recommend this option to everyone as Celebrity takes care of you from the moment you clear customs in Quito to the moment they take you back to the airport for your return. The extra cost of the additional three days is a bargain considering they take care of all your transfers, your luggage, your sightseeing, your tours, your meals, and eliminate any hassle you'd have to deal with doing it yourself. This is our 5th cruise and we've never used a cruise line for ANY tours, transfers or hotel options in the past. We always think we can do it for less and better on our own. This time, I say go with Celebrity. They make it worth it. In every way, this trip exceeded our expectations.A little background: I spent a considerable amount of time researching the different options for seeing the Galapagos, and after having experienced Celebrity, I'm confident we chose the best option for the money. We saw the National Geographic ships and the smaller ships cruising the Galapagos and the Xpedition certainly looked more appealing in every way. Yes, it's a lot of money up front, but after you experience the cruise and don't have to pay an additional dime, you realize that it wasn't so much after all. The only extra costs are any shopping you do on the ship or islands (limited opportunity), diving (approximately $250 pp which we opted not to do), Quito airport departure tax, and computer/internet rental on ship.) Compared to a regular cruise with gratuities, shore excursions, pictures, alcohol, specialty restaurants, shopping, etc....the extra costs on the Xpedition are minimal.Best advice we got:-Take more memory cards than you think you'll need-Take pictures of the daily schedule each day so it's easier to categorize your pictures post trip-Take a camera with video capability rather than two separate pieces of equipment. Less to carry and more time to capture memories without hassle of changing equipment.-Take a fanny pack for excursions rather than a backpack. The fanny pack was not as hot and heavy and held a few water bottles and extra camera equipment.-Know how to use your camera and switch between settings, especially if it's an underwater camera (i.e..camera to video, etc..)Things we were surprised by:-The luxury of the Xpedition! I'd expected a small ship wouldn't have the luxuries of a large ship, but it did. Beautiful public areas, bars, artwork, great food and service, and the cabin amenities of a large ship. The staff was amazing and deserves kudos for their hard work. -The contrast between the luxury and raw nature of the Galapagos: you see all this amazing wildlife up close and personal. You're hot, sweaty, awestruck and content, but then you board the Xpedition and are greeted with a wet washcloth to wash your face and hands, live music playing, complimentary beverages and snacks. Wow.-Night activities were really fun. I thought everyone would go to sleep immediately following dinner, but there was always something fun going on put on by the cruise director and naturalists. Salsa dancing, stargazing, Crossing the Equator party, and a talent show were some of the night time activities. -The food was really good! Favorites were any type of seafood and the few times there were barbecues outside with tons of fresh grilled fish and meat.-Staff was super! Cabins were always clean, smiles were abundant, service was good. One evening between the second excursion and dinner the cruise director made an announcement that the captain had seen dolphins off the bow of the ship. The sun setting in the Galapagos with dolphins performing for you..what more can you ask? -Movement of the ship is very noticeable - I specifically went with the Xpedition over a smaller ship hoping to avoid movement and seasickness. Thankfully, I had no seasickness, but if you're prone at all, take meds, ginger, pressure bands, etc.. just in case. The movement is significant.-Sharks! Don't miss the dozens of sharks every evening and/or early morning feeding in the ambient lights of the boat. Items we're glad we had:-lens cleaners for cameras-quick dry clothing to hand wash and quick dry in room-cameras for both of us including underwater cameras. We had a total of 4 cameras including my point and shoot, his SLR, my Canon D10 for underwater and a borrowed Olympus Stylus for his underwater. We were able to capture different shots that wouldn't have been possible with only one camera to share. At one point a baby seal came up and sniffed and touched my husband. If he'd have had the camera, we would have missed the shot.-Sunglass straps-Defog for our snorkel equipment. It was never offered that we saw. If you're really into snorkeling you'll want it.-Fanny pack rather than backpack for excursions - less weight, less of a sweaty back.Wish we'd had:-Febreze - all that wet, sweaty clothing/shoes get smelly-More socks for wearing tennies. I found sand got in my Keens and gave me blisters. I'd have preferred wearing tennies with socks more often. Your experience may vary..-Small notebook for making notes on excursions regarding what naturalists say. A few people had these and I envied them. Only important if you're the type of person who wants to remember and record the details. Advice:-Do your research regarding when to take this trip. We simply went with the cheapest rate we could find within a time frame. Luckily, it worked for us, but might not work for everyone. March was hot, hot, hot. We were ok with that, but for some it would ruin their trip. You could not sit on the deck without an umbrella. Everyone was dripping sweat on the excursions. On the positive side, we didn't need use wetsuits for the snorkeling. Also, everything was green and lush due to recent rainfall. Luckily, we only experienced rain one day. Also, some animals are only seen certain times of year. If weather and particular animals are important to you, do your research. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2010
Since the Xpedition carries only 90 or so passengers, getting on board did not involve long lines or delays. We were bussed from the airport on Baltra to a pier, boarded small 16 passenger Zodiac boats and taken to the ship. Our baggage ... Read More
Since the Xpedition carries only 90 or so passengers, getting on board did not involve long lines or delays. We were bussed from the airport on Baltra to a pier, boarded small 16 passenger Zodiac boats and taken to the ship. Our baggage traveled separately; we were responsible for our carry-ones. Transferring from the pier to the Zodiac and from the Zodiac to the aft end of the Xpedition was handled by the crew with great emphasis on safety. In fact, this attention to safety never wavered during the cruise. Our cabin was comparable to others we have been in. This is based on over 25 other cruises. The food was not top of the line, but it was very good. The staff was excellent and the entertainment was simpler than usual, but done in a more intimate atmosphere. What you would expect on a ship of this size. A little dancing, a little karaoke, some professional music and the nightly briefing by the Entertainment Director/Head Naturalist of the next day's activities. The other guests were friendly, but tended to try to respect your space. Didn't know much about CruiseCritic until the end of the cruise. The people who told us said that they had known all about what to expect before they booked. I thought we did too. When we got home, I read about 10 reviews and noted that one had mentioned that the walking surfaces were troublesome. The other reviewers gave glowing recommendations and I agree with them. It was an experience that should not be missed. The islands are volcanic and basically untouched by man. The walking surfaces included boulders, rocks, shale and lava rocks. I was always watching every place I put my foot. My wife has a deathly fear of rocks, is on a blood thinning medication and suffers from occasional moments of vertigo. The naturalist guides were very helpful. The closest doctor was on board the ship. Falling during one of the walks would have meant getting back to the small rubber raft, embarking, transferring onto the aft end of the ship and, finally, receiving professional treatment. We used a lot of bandaids, but never fell. I think of this trip as an exciting suicide mission that we survived. Read Less
21 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
The most dissapointing cruise I have ever taken.. I had asked Celebrity directly if there where top brand liquors, specifically Grey Goose or Black Label and replied yes. Not only where there no Top Brand liquors onboard but I was not able ... Read More
The most dissapointing cruise I have ever taken.. I had asked Celebrity directly if there where top brand liquors, specifically Grey Goose or Black Label and replied yes. Not only where there no Top Brand liquors onboard but I was not able to have a drink because I do not drink national brand liquor. It gives me a headache. Additionally the cruise inner loop is a geological exploration cruise not a true Galapagos experience. We only where able to see birds but no real wildlife until practically the day before last when they took us to the Giant Turtle farm. Which by the way it was a very supervised and limited activity that we could not even get close to any turtle for a photograph if unless we had a 200 zoom lens because the guide adamant about it scolded you like a child if you dared to get reasonably close. The cabin I had a Veranda on the 4th floor could not be smaller because then we could not enter at all. Bed not even a twin it was 3/4 of twin narrowing at the feet to 1/2 twin. Bathroom so small I could not wash my hair in the whole week because my elbows could not withstand the pain. No entertainment at all. Food very good and the only worth mentioning was the staff. They bended backwards to make you feel happy. Never seen a crew so eager to help and make your voyage great. A very expensive cruise for so little offering. Excursions where merely walks over rocks and lava or extreme hikes with only some panoramic views. Activities not prepared for the not so young or very physically fit. I have many friends who chose Silver Seas over Celebrity and pictures and amenities don't compare. I chose Celebrity because always liked Royal Caribbean Service and thought this cruise would be more fun and amazing with good facilities. Very disappointing for my husband and me. Not worth the money for the quality. By the way don't mislead saying there is what is not in the cruise as I would have brought my own liquor. I am very sorry my Galapagos experience was so poor and when I share with friends they are amazed at our poor cruise experience compared to theirs in other cruise lines.You need to provide more realistic information of what you offer and not mislead customers as I have lost faith in Royal Caribbean. Tried writing and contact Celebrity Expedition to express my dissatisfaction and 1/12 month later they keep telling me when I call they are to busy to respond. Read Less
12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
Very disappointed. Not up to Celebrity standard we expected. The ship was old and tired. Too many people on board for common rooms. Could not get seat during briefings. Had to wait in line for everything. Dining room crowded and poor ... Read More
Very disappointed. Not up to Celebrity standard we expected. The ship was old and tired. Too many people on board for common rooms. Could not get seat during briefings. Had to wait in line for everything. Dining room crowded and poor lay out. Food was awful and service just OK. Service in our suite was lacking. Half the days we didn't get out snacks as promised. Room was dirty and never vaccumed. Tv service in room was terrible ..only two/three channels of old movies or documentaries and no information on excursions. Staff was just doing minimum. Waste of time and money. Th excursions we disappointing. Didn't like lining up for reservations and the next day for tickets and second time. Then wait for you number to be called in lounge to go on excursions. I didn't go on vacations to stand in lines. Must be a better system. Not a relaxing trip at all. Hot tub was dirty and cold so could not use. Read Less
11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2016
First of all, if I had NOT been in the Royal Suite I may have rated this cruise 4 stars (but never 5 stars). And this review is probably only helpful to those people looking to book something other than the least expensive cabin. Because ... Read More
First of all, if I had NOT been in the Royal Suite I may have rated this cruise 4 stars (but never 5 stars). And this review is probably only helpful to those people looking to book something other than the least expensive cabin. Because you need to book the cheapest cabin you can. Celebrity is our cruise line of choice and we like to sail in the larger suites. We do this not only because of the extra space but also because of the perks that go along with the larger suites. For this cruise we booked the Royal Suite. It was very expensive ( at least 8 times more that the lower fare). But if I had it to do over again I'd book the cheapest room. I had read all the glorious reviews and even so I was well aware that this cruise was not going to be anything like our other cruises because of the size of the ship. We knew there wouldn't be many amenities. We were already prepared that the food wouldn't be as good. But even after those lower expectations, we both agreed that this was our least favorite cruise out of the other 9 we've taken on Celebrity. Part of the reason is that with the exception of the food and beverage staff, the service was very poor. We NEVER saw or had any way to contact our room attendant. And we needed her on several occasions. Customer Service was a joke. Of course we knew the internet would be poor but there was no internet for 4 of the 7 days and they really didn't seem concerned about fixing it. Now at this point I feel like the child in The Emperors New Clothes. Because all the other reviews of this cruise are so high. In our opinion, the cruise was good but not over the top like we had anticipated. We liked most of the excursions. However, the snorkeling was not near as good as we had expected. It's fine as long as you're not comparing it to some of the good Caribbean locations. As far as the wildlife, it was VERY cool that we got to see animals that are indigenous to the Galapagos. But after a few days of seeing them you realize that with the exception of some of the sea lions, most Galapagos species are very inactive. So.... look, there's another marine iguana laying on the rocks. Are we glad we went to the Galapagos? Yes! Another check off the bucket list. Would we go again? Nope. But back to my original point. Don't book an expensive suite thinking your going to get any VIP or higher level of treatment. If you want a little bit of extra space, then fine, go ahead. But even the Royal Suite was too small for us to want to spend any time in there. Read Less
12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2015
The Xpedition Sales Team is grossly uninformed and a number of Xpedition Passengers concurred that the information provided prior to departure from U.S. is very sparse and this team is not incentivized to provide helpful information to the ... Read More
The Xpedition Sales Team is grossly uninformed and a number of Xpedition Passengers concurred that the information provided prior to departure from U.S. is very sparse and this team is not incentivized to provide helpful information to the booked Passengers (or even prior to booking). Two nights in Quito prior to embarking aboard the Celebrity Xpedition was a waste of time and money. The J.W. Marriott in Quito is an hour's drive from the Quito Airport and has management and maintenance problems. They seem to live off the guaranteed rooms from Celebrity each weekend and have no concern for their guests. Then you have the hour's drive back to the Quito Airport for the charter flight to Baltra. The charter flight from Quito to Baltra is nice and embarkation process is reasonable. From the Baltra Airport you board a bus to the zodiac "station" and ride to the Xpedition. Once aboard a staff member escorts you to your cabin. Ours had not been serviced properly but improved after it was reported. The Chief Purser and Head of Food Operations were especially helpful and friendly and anxious to please. Expect to hear the anchor going out and coming up from all over the ship once or twice daily - since it is such a small ship. Also because it is so small the Xpedition rocks side to side when anchored. In order to be allowed to sail in the Galapagos the Xpedition (as do National Geographic and Silver Sea) must employ all Ecuadorian staff as well as use Ecuadorian food. Do not expect meals being available throughout the day as on other cruises. The main purpose of this cruise is to see the Galapagos Islands - not to eat or have any "free/rest time". There is a short window of time for breakfast, lunch and dinner. No extra places to get snacks, etc. as on other cruise ships. if you do not drink alcohol you will find this cruise over-priced because you are subsidizing the "unlimited" alcohol for everyone else. It would be nice if Celebrity would have a price option for passengers who do not drink alcohol. There are two excursions daily (none on Embarkation Day nor on Disembarkation Day). There is a morning excursion and another in the afternoon. Each evening prior to dinner there is a "lecture" to provide information to allow you to choose your excursion choices for the next day. The sales pitch by the Cruise Director to pressure Passengers to make $$ contributions to the Galapagos Fund - as well as pressure to plant trees is inappropriate and insulting in my opinion. A Naturalist accompanies each group on each excursion and they are the best asset Celebrity has for this cruise. Observing the mating rituals of Albatross, juvenile Sea Lions, Marine Iguanas, Land Iguanas, Penguins, Giant Land Tortoises- as well as the snorkeling are fantastic. The animal encounters are the absolute best part. The Machu Picchu extension (after the cruise) was "OK". First of all, Celebrity chooses flights which make you arrive into Lima late on Disembarkation Day and then you have about an hour's drive to your Hotel. Then after arriving late at the Country Club Hotel in Lima, you must get up very early for an early departure right back to the Lima Airport to fly to Cusco the following morning. Once in Cusco, the 11,500 foot altitude is very apparent so you must take things slowly to avoid altitude sickness. Several people in our group required oxygen and most had headaches from the altitude. Drink lots of water which helps. The unfortunate thing is that Celebrity subs to an Agency in Lima to handle the Passengers - and they do not require the hotels to have our rooms ready upon arrival. The disorganization of the Lima Agency was apparent throughout the Machu Picchu excursion. Flights were changed to earlier than planned so you have little sleep. The restaurant for Dinner in Cusco was a big disappointment - service was awful and food similar. The Hotel Monasterio in Cusco is a 5 Star and the lunch and dinner there were good. However, the housekeeping is no where near what a 5 Star should be. The Hiram Bingham Train from Cusco to Machu Picchu was very nice - one of the highlights of the entire trip. Take in all the scenery on the morning trip to Machu Picchu because it will be dark almost all the way of the return. Machu Picchu did not disappoint. Be prepared for a lot of climbing - no bathrooms once you leave the train station. Only go on this if you want constant exercise and no "free time" and if you REALLY want to see the animals and Machu Picchu. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2014
Sooooooooo disappointing after booking this cruise 13 months in advance. We departed on December 25 -- yes Christmas Day. We had booked ALL through Celebrity including airfare, transfers, etc. We felt secure knowing that with Celebrity ... Read More
Sooooooooo disappointing after booking this cruise 13 months in advance. We departed on December 25 -- yes Christmas Day. We had booked ALL through Celebrity including airfare, transfers, etc. We felt secure knowing that with Celebrity taking care of all details, everything would go well. NOT. We arrived at 11.35 pm on December 25 (we flew out of Newark, NJ) only to discover that "Celebrity comes in on Friday nights to pick up." Which meant that there was no one there to meet us. We checked our multi-paged itinerary and noted yes they had the flight right; yes it said the time. Yes the check in at JWMARRIOTT is December 26 -- and in 15 more minutes it IS December 26 -- so what happened??? No one knew. A greeter from Azmara got us a cab -- we spoke no Spanish and they didn't speak English -- and suggested we get a receipt. It was $25 and we tipped $2 -- and asked for a receipt. Neither the driver nor the bellman at JWMarriott understood and so we got our bags and went to check in minus the receipt. It's 1:30 a.m. We are told "you are not supposed to check in until 3:00 p.m." and I said, 'Where do you want me to sleep tonight" and the deskclerk insisted i leave my credit card. Done. The next morning we began a horrible, irritating and unnecessarily bureaucratic discussion with ANYONE WHO WOULD LISTEN that we had nothing to do that day, no one picked us up and can ANYONE HELP US get situated.???? No. I called the Royal Caribbean executive offices -- it was a holiday so no one was there. I gave up Christmas Day on the advice of the booking agent that "Quito for two days is a must!!" before we cruised. I called the Emergency line and the only advice they gave me was "too bad you didn't have a receipt for the cab because without it, you won't get reimbursed. Which of course they explained they would Have done! At 7 p.m. on Friday night, the Celebrity supervisor finally talked to us and said they would cover the hotel room the night before; but because we DID NOT MIND THE ACTUAL TIME OF CHECK - IN (3 p.m. on December 26) we were BOTH AT FAULT. So no meals and without the cab receipt? No refund. I was actually so tired and disheartened that I had already given this cruiseline more than $28,000 for the two of us what the hell. They could take their $27 and you know what. We had a good day in Quito. The tour is lovely and the guides are great. We then traveled most of Sunday to get to Baltra to board the ship. NOTE: THIS IS A VERY SMALL SHIP AND IS NOT IN THE LUXURY CLASS OF SHIPS AT ALL. I have cruised almost every line -- and believe me, this was basically a nice small ship that served some good lobster. It was the Holidays but on New Year's Eve they had no party planning at all. All 98 passengers milled around after dinner on the 4th deck -- which was awful -- and had to ask for Champagne at midnight. This was a very mixed crowd. Lots of families -- great -- and all ages. It could have been an amazing trip if the cruise director had planned for it. Monica, the cruise director, listened to no one. Example: I asked her why there were no hats, noisemakers, confetti -- anything -- to celebrate at midnight and she said, "oh your expectations are too high You're thinking we are a Celebrity cruise -- and we are not!" EXACTLY. The excursions are varied for different levels of physicality -- but again, Monica did not describe them well at all. All she needed to do was show photos of the terrain so that we could understand the difference between difficult and easier. When you are not on an excursion, there is nothing to do. Staterooms are very very small -- all on 4th deck were like inside cabins but with a porthole. The suites are better -- 5th and 6th deck -- but with so few, you need to book two years in advance. I wish I had. You feel the ship swaying all the time and had to hang on to the railings to walk safely. Food was good to just OK except for the fresh lobster -- which is amazing. The Naturalists are terrific but you never interact with them except on your excursion. How about our Captain and his executive crew! We never saw him, he never talked to anyone (and I did talk to many passengers about this) at all. We "saw" him at the wrap up "celebration" the night before we disembarked. He and his team were absent and it was so strange that they didn't circulate at all. HERE'S SOMETHING TO NOTE AND BE PREPARED -- We had to be out of our cabins at 8 a.m. on Sunday, January 4 but sat in that ship until 10:30 and then went to the airport where we sat until 6 or 7 p.m. while we waited for the charted plane bringing the new GALAPAGOS passengers to Baltra. The plane was very late; we were all very tired and cranky and those of us who were going to Lima did not get to our hotel until 10:30 p.m. An entire day was wasted traveling. They need two chartered planes -- and at the cost per person for this cruise they need to fix that. Now for the good part -- definitely do the MACHU PICCHU extension option as it was the best part of our trip. The hotels were magnificent -- The Country Club Hotel in Lima; the Monasterio in Coscuo, and the Santuary in Machu Picchu were just to die for. Food? the Best in the world! We loved every minute. The HIRAM BINGHAM (Orient Express) train to Machu Picchu is an experience not to miss. First class and luxury all the way. The guides were terrific and worked with us to make sure everyone was ok and able to continue climbing. We were not troubled by altitude sickness but if you are worried, just keep drinking bottled water and the cocao tea. This is the part of the journey that made up for the disappointing cruise experience. Without Machu Picchu, I would have graded the entire experience a "5 out of 10".   Read Less
11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
As you probably know this ship will be refurbished and re done and a new one is taking its place, I believe, in 2020. The ship, thus, looks a little tired, but it is very clean. The state rooms are among the smallest I've seen, even ... Read More
As you probably know this ship will be refurbished and re done and a new one is taking its place, I believe, in 2020. The ship, thus, looks a little tired, but it is very clean. The state rooms are among the smallest I've seen, even the suites, but you won't spend a long time in the room. My only criticism would be the snorkeling equipment, the fins in particular are lacking, they don't have inventory in the most common sizes and the same with the wet suits most of which show a great deal of wear and are broken in places. Fins and a wet suit are essential in this cruise and at this price the equipment should be in top shape. The bar is another thing that needs minding. There is only one bar and it's the hang out place when you are cruising or after excursions. The bar has very limited selections and the bartenders are hit and miss with the drinks. Other than that Celebrity provides a great experience from the moment you touch down in Quito. The places they take you, the food, the hotel, it's all done very organized. Staff is all terrific. The ship's food is very good, not fancy, but fresh and delicious. The meat is pre cooked before it reaches the ship so you may want to opt for the sea food items which are local and fresh, specially the langoustines which are a delicacy State side and quite expensive. Some tips. If you are not used to snorkeling in cold water, buy a hood, it's cheap and (along with the wet suit) will keep you warm. Seconds after the initial shock of cold water, I forgot all about it, and I'm used to Miami water. More than half the life in the Galapagos is under water, if you don't do the snorkeling you miss half the trip. Invest in a small water camera, I got an Olympus TG 5, while the photos were ok (most of the time the water was cloudy) the under water video was terrific. You also need a camera with a good zoom lens, I only took the water camera and it was a mistake. While some of the wildlife is close a zoom will give you amazing shots. Regarding the Galapagos in general. We are an avid wildlife loving family, traveled the Andes, Amazon, Africa, etc, and have stayed in luxury camps and candle light only shacks. The wild life and terrain in the Galapagos is unique, but not varied and the cruise experience, specially when paying for a family, lacks value. This is not a trip that touched my heart or something I want to do again. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
A very good Galapagos cruise I chose this cruise and itinerary in order to see the Galápagos Islands in comfort on a celebrity cruise ship I chose the seven day cruise which meant I had time to arrange my own itinerary in Quito As ... Read More
A very good Galapagos cruise I chose this cruise and itinerary in order to see the Galápagos Islands in comfort on a celebrity cruise ship I chose the seven day cruise which meant I had time to arrange my own itinerary in Quito As well as staying for a couple of nights on the islands prior to embarkation I spent two nights in Quito at hotel Casona to La Ronde which is a lovely colonial hotel in the old quarter I undertook a day tour to see volcanoes hummingbirds and the cloud forest which was a brilliant experience I then spent two nights at hotel Solla Verde Santa Cruz Island The hotel is located in the highlands A 20 minute taxi ride into Puerto Ayora Very clean comfortable boutique hotel with lush vegetation and a pet giant tortoise Day trip to North Seymour Idlsnd which the hotel advised having looked at the itinerary for expedition Amazing wildlife including Sally Lightfoot crabs seals blue footed boobies and many other species The trip include snorkelling the highlight of which was seeing turtles Which were inquisitive swimming around us Embarkation was smooth There is no pier side check in as individual travellars we were met at the airport where there was a short wait in a reserved area with other guests on the seven day itinerary Most of The passengers who were on charter flights were delayed by some hours and we had the privilege of being taken onto Xpeditiob after a short wait At the airport The only way to embark is by zodiac so this would not suit any passengers with significant walking difficulties the same is true for all visits to the islands from Xpedition The ship seemed clean with a very friendly crew There is no elevator which is not a problem for passengers that can manage to get in and out of the zodiacs I had an suite which was a good size with a small balcony but cannot comment on the size of the routine cabins which I understand are quite small The only problem with the cabin was the wardrobe doors were difficult to shut and opened spontaneously which could not be fixed during the cruise The cabin was otherwise clean and was more than satisfactory The only slight problem was the dining which is not all celebrities fault Meat has to be partly precooked before import into the Galapagos Islands which affected the quality of the meat Fish alternative was somewhat over cooked especially the shellfish but I guess they have to do this to avoid Gastro intestinal upset Every evening the cruise director informed us in a very entertaining way about the next days activities giving everyone a choice The activities In groups of up to 16 passengers were excellent with well informed guides Prior to activities most passengers would have assemble in the lounge and there was some disorganisation as passengers vied to go into the first groups Selection by giving passengers ticket numbers as they do on the tendering process on the larger ships would’ve made for a more organised procedure that this is a minor complaint The extent of wildlife seen was amazing and overall the trip was very enjoyable and fulfiilled my expectations Read Less
11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
Our bucket list has always included seeing the Galapagos Islands and as Celebrity offered a post cruise visit to Peru's Sacred Valley and MachuPiccu, the choice seemed easy. The Xpedition is the largest of Celebrity's vessels ... Read More
Our bucket list has always included seeing the Galapagos Islands and as Celebrity offered a post cruise visit to Peru's Sacred Valley and MachuPiccu, the choice seemed easy. The Xpedition is the largest of Celebrity's vessels that visit the islands though it needs to be said, this is not a large ship with a maximum capacity of 98 guests. The trip begins in Quito with a tour and overnight followed by a flight to Baltra and a Zodiac to the ship. All went as planned without a hitch. On board, cabins are on the smallish side though there are some larger suites.Each day of the cruise there are two stops. Alternative excursions are presented the night before and one signs up for their preference as to degree of effort required, e.g. hikes, snorkels, etc. This is one of the few areas where Celebrity can use some improvement. Guests appeared mostly Type A's and so the time for sign up was not pleasant. Perhaps they could have a computerized system for sign up or use the excursion process that is used on their other vessels. 16 guests to each naturalist heads out the next morning, returning to the ship for lunch and then repeating the process after lunch. Again, here, a bit of improvement is warranted: there was some jockeying for position to get on the first zodiac to shore which is disruptive. All the excursions were incredible- lots of wildlife and excellent guides to help one understand the uniqueness of the environment. The food was good but not exceptional, perhaps because of the restrictions on what can be brought to the region. The chef tried hard to vary dinner options but overall it is not what one expects on typical Celebrity cruises. A dinner highlight is dining out on the deck under the stars. Really something to see. As this is all inclusive, drinks, wine and beer are available at any time. Don't expect to see single malts on the shelf, though. There is little in the way of entertainment but after a day outdoors, an early bedtime is typical. Also, there were no kids at all; it appeared the youngest may have been 40 or so though the group is quite active all day. At the end of the cruise, the zodiac ride and a flight back to Quito occur. We went on to the Peru portion of the trip as did about 40 others and met up with a few from Celebrity's smaller Galapagos vessels. This portion of the trip had incredible highs but some lows as well especially as to all the connections required. From Quito, we board a flight to Lima. The traffic in Lima is Kafkaesque-- 90 minutes for a ~ 10 mile ride to the hotel only to be repeated in the opposite direction early the next morning for the flight to Cuzco- another 90 minute bus ride. The trip to Casa Hacienda Orihuela is long and a bit tedious but once in the Sacred Valley, amazing to see. The next day we tour Inka ruins and lunch at Wayra Ranch for an equestrian show. Then off to Machu Picchu which defies description. All tours require some climbing an at altitude so this is not trivial sight seeing! We return from Machu Picchu ( to Cuzco) and have dinner on the Train: Hiram Bingham. This day can use some work. It is an early morning train to the site, a climb through the ruins, then lunch and then scheduled "nothing and tea time followed by the train ride to Cuzco (with dinner). Thje group convenced our guide to forgo the tea and give us some time in the Pueblo Machu Picchu where we pick up the train. The original plan has far too much down time with little to fill it. As modified, it was more interesting. A day of Cuzco touring follows then a day with a half day tour of Lima and then to the hotel. Transfers are provided from the hotel to the airport at appropriate times. This post cruise portion has pluses and minuses: On the positive side, the sights are incredible and almost not to be believed. All hotels are first rate: Westins and J.W. Marriotts- what appeared to be the most upscale in the region. The Hotel Monestario a former monastery, was truly most interesting. The guides and staff most accommodating considering we were a group of 50 with at least 60 opinions. Meals were very good though not quite excellent; language is a bit of a problem. As a not very important but illustrative example, I ordered a gin martini and received a glass of ice, a bit of Vermouth and a bottle of ginger ale. On the downside, traffic in Lima and Cuzco is near the worst though not the worst I've experienced. No such thing as following traffic rules. Also, far too much time spent on fancy long lunches when the reason to be there is too see and experience the culture not to eat. This is a trip to do once! it is costly and tiring but mind opening and beautiful. One needs to be prepared for a few physical challenges and certainly challenges to one's patience. A few changes by Celebrity kcould make this a 5 star experience. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
The Celebrity Cruise line did a fabulous job organizing all the events that took place from the airport in Quito, excursions around Quito, hotel arrangements at the JW Marriott, transportation to the Hotel and transportation to Baltra. ... Read More
The Celebrity Cruise line did a fabulous job organizing all the events that took place from the airport in Quito, excursions around Quito, hotel arrangements at the JW Marriott, transportation to the Hotel and transportation to Baltra. Organization was top notch and guides were well spoken and helpful. The cruise ship was kept tidy with the assistance of excellent cabin stewards that cleaned our rooms after every excursion and worked relentlessly. The ship dining room and most facilities were well maintained. Our upgraded cabin was not as well kept as I would have liked to see, given the extreme expense of having a suite. I realize the cruise line must utilize all the cabins to make money, but areas where tiles are chipped and toilet seats appear melted are not what I expect when traveling at such a "huge" expense. My sons" "standard" cabin appeared to be more up dated and refurbished. The beds are also not of the caliber I would expect at this price point. Again, I am grateful that the stewards and various other deckhands worked seamlessly to provide updated and clean conditions in the common areas of the ship. The service was stellar and the Naturalists seemed very excited about the tours they were leading and provided excellent information regarding conservation practices in the Galapagos.The Cruise Director worked to keep the cruisers engaged. The pre- cruise package/tour and cruise around the islands and excursions were all excellent, just a bit disappointed with the overall quality of our cabin accommodations for the price point. I commend the staff and the Zodiac operators for making safety a priority and that comes down from the Captain as well as Celebrity. Read Less
11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
Rated this 4 out of 5 from a photographers point of view since I saw few penguins, wasn't able to get good photographs of blue footed boobies on land or diving, couldn't get good shots of flying frigates. Land and marine iguanas ... Read More
Rated this 4 out of 5 from a photographers point of view since I saw few penguins, wasn't able to get good photographs of blue footed boobies on land or diving, couldn't get good shots of flying frigates. Land and marine iguanas were extremely numerous and easy to photograph as were the land tortoises. I opted for good weather (we had rain only briefly on one day) but sacrificed a few wildlife opportunities. Cameras: In spite of what you read, the longer the zoom the better. Use burst mode for shooting birds in flight. Landings and foot-wear: Closed-toed sandals are fine for all landings and walks but wear socks for odor and blister prevention. You'll have time to dry your feet after wet landings though not always with a place to sit. I brought a small wash cloth though towels are provided for drying feet. I think it unnecessary to bring a water proof camera bag since wet landings are in very shallow water for just a couple of steps and help is always available getting in and out of zodiacs. I didn't hear of anyone getting dunked. Walks: Daily walks are divided into long and short walks though the length applies more to duration than to distance. Long walks are probably never more than a mile or so and were pretty level and easy to manage. Only one walk was tough on I think Espanola Island. This was not adequately explained and the walk was somewhat dangerous, required intense focus as it was almost entirely over irregularly shaped rocks which caused a few falls. If you have mobility problems then skip the long walk on this and take a walking stick (sticks are always available) if you choose the short version. Carry bandages. Climate: Though hot and humid it was not nearly as bad as I expected. I wore a long-sleeved all cotton white shirt that worked great. Insects are not much of a problem but take Off insect repellent individual packs. Large water containers are provided. Read Less
14 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2017
Celebrity runs a top notch operation in the Galapagos. From our arrival to departure we were well taken care of! The tour guides were informative on land and the naturalist offered their vast knowledge on the islands. The whole tour runs ... Read More
Celebrity runs a top notch operation in the Galapagos. From our arrival to departure we were well taken care of! The tour guides were informative on land and the naturalist offered their vast knowledge on the islands. The whole tour runs like a well oiled machine....with safety of the passengers always present. The ship is smaller than any I have ever cruised on, but perfect for this location. Lack of internet is a issue I think Celebrity needs to address in this day and time. I'm sure almost all passengers would be willing to pay for a high speed internet package. The food was typical cruise fare....good, but not highly seasoned! I found the seafood to be the best choice almost every night! The beef was not good and lacked flavor! The Dinner Under the Stars was disappointing! The menu is the same every night that Dinner Under the Stars is offered. Service was slow and sketchy! I would not book that option if I went again. The service in the dining room was also slow and spotty.....Dinner almost always taking almost two hours. The crew was great, always greeting us and taking care of our needs! The charter flight out to Baltra was good and I did upgrade to First Class. We checked off almost every creature on the Galapagos list! Snorkeling was excellent and I urge everyone to do the Deep Water Snorkeling...it was the best! The zodiac rides along the coast were an enjoyable change from the hiking. Information was given every day regarding the excursion and the clothes, shoes, rain gear, sunscreen, and bug spray needed! We had rain only one day and hardly ever felt a bug. Sunscreen was a must...Hot! Hot! Hot! On our final day in Quito we picked the Spa option and it turned out to be the Piece de Resistance to our whole trip! After the rigorous excursions....a spa day was the perfect ending! I would highly recommend! This was truly the trip of a lifetime and I checked it off my bucket list! Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2017
We wanted a boat larger than the 14-16 passenger ones you see most often in the Galapagos. The ability level of vast majority of passengers was limited. Very few passengers under the age of 60. We are very experienced snorkelers and ... Read More
We wanted a boat larger than the 14-16 passenger ones you see most often in the Galapagos. The ability level of vast majority of passengers was limited. Very few passengers under the age of 60. We are very experienced snorkelers and were looking forward to deep water snorkeling offered to advanced snorkelers. Unfortunately, there were always a few passengers electing to go on these excursions and interrupted our experience since they could barely swim much less snorkel. We went in February, so water was warm enough to swim with just a rash guard, no wet suit needed. We took our own mask and snorkel and used their fins. You need to know the internet service is practically non-existent, could barely retrieve emails, but no attachments. The ship has plenty of room to roam and get away from annoying passengers. We had cabin #311, a smaller one, and it had plenty of room, plus you are seldom in the cabin. Food was good, disappointed no lobster was available. All staff onboard provided exceptional service. Naturalists were all outstanding, especially Marta. Shore excursions included and had two levels of ability. Definitely not a cruise for teenagers or children. It's a bucket list experience and expensive, so we'd not be going again, but would recommend others take this trip. Read Less
15 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2017
Was a very nice cruise. Only disappointment was the limited snorkeling available. One port was skipped because of rough seas, and three were murky waters. Here are some Pros and Cons to our trip. Pros Nicely packaged with ... Read More
Was a very nice cruise. Only disappointment was the limited snorkeling available. One port was skipped because of rough seas, and three were murky waters. Here are some Pros and Cons to our trip. Pros Nicely packaged with flights and prestay and post stay in Quito. Including their assistance with the checked luggage. They have things down to a science. Very efficient. Seeing the giant tortoises and all the sea lions and iguanas was really cool. Quito and Galapagos guides were very good. Good food. Very confident and friendly staff. Excellent room steward. Nice evening briefing before dinner on next days hiking or snorkeling choices. Cons Poor decision to do slippery rock landing on Fernandina. Four people fell on the wet boulders at the zodiac landing site and got bad cuts on their legs. One night they lost our dining under the stars reservation. No place to view the beautiful dark night sky because of all the deck lights. Unless you had a balcony cabin. Could have reserved one night after dinner for a naturalist to dim the lights on the back deck so people could see the amazing dark sky's. Lack of lectures by naturalists before or after dinner. We were never asked if we wanted coffee or tea with dessert. Two of the snorkels, one from a beach, one from a zodiac, were into completely murky waters. They should have checked it out beforehand instead of wasting our time. Extremely slow internet service, and no working woman e-mail, but we expected that it would be poor. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2016
The Galapagos was on my bucket list. My college roommate and I had booked this cruise and waited 2.5 years for it to come to fruition. We had a great time, however both of us and our husbands got sick in Quito. As part of the ... Read More
The Galapagos was on my bucket list. My college roommate and I had booked this cruise and waited 2.5 years for it to come to fruition. We had a great time, however both of us and our husbands got sick in Quito. As part of the cruise-tour, we ate where Celebrity took us. Both our husbands got sick just before they embarked on the Xpedition. My roommate and I got sick at the end of the tour after eating salad at the Marriott. I believe the food on the ship was safe. The food on the ship was okay. It was not the same quality as what you would find on a regular Celebrity ship. Our room was comfortable and quiet. It was nice to roll out of bed, walk down the hallway to breakfast. I found the staff on the ship to be pleasant and enjoyed being with a small group of people. The Naturalists were good. Some were better than others. With the exception of getting sick, we had a lot of fun. Read Less
16 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2016
The Xpedition is a small comfortable ship that promotes guest interaction because of its small size and layout. There are several outside areas and one inside lounge where daily briefings are held. The lounge is the only place on the ship ... Read More
The Xpedition is a small comfortable ship that promotes guest interaction because of its small size and layout. There are several outside areas and one inside lounge where daily briefings are held. The lounge is the only place on the ship with internet but during our week on board we were only able to access internet a couple of days, most of the time it was down. Getting around the ship is quick and easy. We did not have any rough seas. Everyone dressed very casual so don't even think of bringing dressy clothes- think cool,comfortable and sun proof. The dining room is very nice and tables seat 4-8 so you will find yourself sitting with different people at each meal and getting to know many of your fellow travelers. The food is good but not as high quality or as varied as the large Celebrity ships. The only alternate venue is the outdoor grill that served dinner four times -the same menu, and lunch most days. Our cabin on deck 3 was comfortable and had adequate storage. The bed is tight against the wall on one side so very inconvenient to get in and out. We had it converted to two twins so we had a space of about 6 inches in between beds to allow the inside person access. The beds were comfortable if a little narrow. There is a fridge in cabin with complimentary water and soft drinks. There is also a safe. The window lets in lots of light. I do not think a balcony is worth the extra money on this cruise as you can be on deck in minutes and I didn't miss it at all. Prior to taking this trip we had heard rave reviews from so many people - many named the Galapagos as their best cruise ever! I did enjoy the trip but after a few days began to find the activities somewhat repetitive. The wildlife is interesting especially the giant tortoises and the naturalists were very knowledgeable. The scenery is beautiful in a stark kind of way. The sun is hot and I would avoid the hottest months of February and March. Each day there was an AM and PM off ship included activity with transportation by zodiac. The trips were very organized and there was never a problem getting the excursion you wanted. A lot of the snorkeling trips were categorized as advanced because of deep water and currents. There did not seem to be any scuba diving. The on shore walks included a long or short option and there was an accurate description of difficulty. Expect to spend quite a bit of time in the zodiacs getting to and from each activity. The Marriott hotel in Quito was beautiful and I am glad we arrived early to rest a day before the full day tour of Quito. The chartered flight to the ship was nice and included lunch both ways. I recommend this trip if Galapagos is on your to do list but personally I feel there are many more interesting places to visit. Read Less
32 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2016
Outer Loop.First off, this is not a Luxury cruise. Other reviews bemoaning the non luxury element did not heed the advise of others. Luxury price, yes, luxury extras, no. Tips: Bring extra plug in strip to charge stuff. No bright colors ... Read More
Outer Loop.First off, this is not a Luxury cruise. Other reviews bemoaning the non luxury element did not heed the advise of others. Luxury price, yes, luxury extras, no. Tips: Bring extra plug in strip to charge stuff. No bright colors of anything for the Islands, wasps get angry. Hats are a must. When picking up snorkel gear get the suit first before the add- ons or your size may be gone. Long sleeves are best against the cold. Our Baltra plane was delayed 5+ hours...we were told this the day before the flight. To make up for the time we were told an additional tour would be given to the artist Guayaasamin's home. Once on the bus and moving we were hijacked to a different museum...something on archaeology. I would have preferred watching TV in my room....JW Marriot is a fine establishment, service excellent. 7th floor hallway nauseatingly foul of diesel fumes. Heat/air system did not work in either room we were assigned.Day ONE: we were exceedingly late to arrive, one day wasted. Guides wear crocks. Make sure your water shoes do not have insoles...the smell will be too much. Lesson learned. No seasickness noticed on the ship. No patches either. WASH YOUR HANDS! Those people that did not diligently wash became ill. Expensive trip to be stuck in your stateroom. When they state advanced snorkelers only...it's okay to go as long as you are not afraid. Nobody will die. Lessen learned here too. In May it is HOT. Keep this in mind. If you have toe/foot/ankle/knee/hip/balance difficulties this trip is not for you. Pay attention when the hikes are labeled rough terrain or unstable rocks etc. Many people did not heed the warnings, things went bad and excursions were missed for the rest of trip. Again, very expensive trip to just sit on the boat.There is no wi-fi. People sitting glued to their phones trying to connect is a sad thing. Again, sitting on the boat should not be your priority. Santa Cruz Darwin Center...find something else to do. On this island things are shut down for Saturdays and when it comes siesta time it is even more closed down. Wish we had known this. Photography: up to a 400mm lens, nothing larger needed as critters are close. Dinner under the stars...good idea but all protein food...get a salad as appetizer...I would not do this again. Room 406 was wonderful...not too big, not too small and the staff super clean it all day long! There were a couple special needs people on board, the staff went out of their way to facilitate them at all turns BRAVO!. On the last Sunday you are literally kicked out of your room quite early...not much else to do....another day wasted. Yes, the ship needs to be set up for the next group, but take out and do something on Baltra...whatever it takes. Would do again if prices were dropped considerably. We waited 9 months for our vacay, others 18 months, one couple got on in just 5 weeks. Another couple (according to them) paid full price, the price was later cut, they wanted a refund in the difference, did not get, canceled trip @ $900 fee, purchased a new one at same sailing at the reduced fare, and saved $1600 even after cancellation fee. For us, we paid once, took the choice air option and had nothing to worry about. Questions? Let me know...have lots more info! Read Less
17 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2016
Cruise included two night pre stay at the JW Marriott in Quito Ecuador. Hotel was very good. All meals included. Tour they gave us was not very good. Would have been better to have different options for tours. All transfers, drivers ... Read More
Cruise included two night pre stay at the JW Marriott in Quito Ecuador. Hotel was very good. All meals included. Tour they gave us was not very good. Would have been better to have different options for tours. All transfers, drivers and most guides very good. Flight to Baltra good, plane a little cramped though. Transfer to ship went very smooth. We were in cabin 506 with a veranda, If you can do it I definately recommend having a veranda. We saw all kinds of animals and birds while sitting there. Cabin was a good size, queen bed that you could walk around. Love seat, desk, fridge stocked with water and pop. Good size bathroom. Ship in good condition everything easy to get to. Gym only had one treadmill, a manual elliptical and a manual bike and some free weights. It is located right where they give massages which I'm sure would be noisy. Ship is warm, we kept our air conditioning right down and it was ok. Food pretty good. Service good to excellent. Only a few could not speak English it seemed. Tours were good. Guides excellent except Adolpho, he seemed to do the bare minimum and didn't seem too enthusiastic about his job. On the second last day my husband picked up a Norwalk virus. Dr. Saw him three times and he was in very poor shape. A few other people also got this and we heard that one woman that went onto Machu pichu was hospitalized with the same thing. I never saw anyone cleaning hand rails or anything else for that matter while on the ship. The use of hand sanitizer was never enforced or expected. They were more concerned with what is on the bottom of you shoes than keeping people healthy. Celebrity never followed up on our complaint as we wanted to make sure they cleaned the ship thoroughly as to not have anyone else get sick. Very poor customer service from celebrity after the cruise. Not happy with them. Galapagos is a must see. Read Less
61 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2016
We just returned from the 10 day packaged Celebrity Expedition trip. We are happy we did the package. We had booked our trip almost a year and a half ago and didn't get much attention from Celebrity and felt forgotton until the ... Read More
We just returned from the 10 day packaged Celebrity Expedition trip. We are happy we did the package. We had booked our trip almost a year and a half ago and didn't get much attention from Celebrity and felt forgotton until the baggage tags arrived in the mail with instructions. We boarded the plane with fingers crossed there would be a Celebrity employee at the Quito airport upon our arrival since the booking process was long ago and vague. Our flight arrived at the airport in Quito way later than expected due to an AA delay out of Miami. Exhausted and much after midnight we saw a person with a Celebrity sign waiting for us. What a relief because we don't speak Spanish and didn't know what to expect. They held our hands (so to speak) from this point foward (worth the extra money!). We boarded a mini bus (were handed bottles of water, the start of a major ritual) with folks who had arrived a bit sooner and a few who were on our flight and started our incredible journey. It was drizzling lightly as we cruised through the mountains and about 55 minutes later we pulled up to the JW Marriott Hotel after 130am ( I think - so tired after two flights and drive).We were all greeted in the lobby with a cocktail and our room keys and instructions about the breakfast and tour we had to be ready for in hours. UGH!. The Marriott was really great, nice staff and very clean. Roses everywhere as they are grown in Equator and are cheap. Buffett breakfast was included for Celebrity package guests at the hotel and was very good. Patrons paid US $25 if not part of the tour. Us dollars are the currency in Ecuador, but if you are part of the tour you only need souvenir cash. Note- most don't take credit but if they did they added taxes to the bill.Hotel gym was excellent and pool was heated but was outdoors. The outdoor temp was in the 60s so we were glad to have worn sweat pants and a long t-shirts. It warmed up mid day on the tour. Being from Florida we are use to heat and humidity and felt the weather was cool for us. My partner thought the tour was a waste, and I sort of agreed wishing we could of slept in rather than start the trip exhausted. The Churches were the only highlight, they were covered in real gold flake - beautiful and not something you will see likely elsewhere in a lifetime. The rest BORING. Lunch was with the Celebrity group in the city and was ok but we were nervous about eating in the town and made sure we stuck with cooked only items. We then had the option to go back to the hotel or do the equator tour. We did the tour, why not??! Was fun to take pictures on the line and go up in the monument. Dinner was with the Celebrity group out in town in a wonderful restaurant they closed just for us. Food was great, but the start of unavoidable late dining ugh. Sunday morning we went down to the buffet (all food included) and the news spread quickly about the charter flight being delayed. Celebrity said we would have lunch in the hotel and didn't have to check out of room early. They set up a museum tour but we opted to grab a much needed nap and hit the gym. Folks said it was nice. Hotel included robes (as did the room on the ship including slippers - less to pack!) The Cruise: The trip was beyond wonderful. The food was just ok overall. Staff excellent, ship old, but very clean. Every day they offered two hikes (morning and afternoon). There were two options per hike (short and long) we always did long hikes but they were only maybe half hour longer than the short most of the time. We just got back from our trip and never saw a drop of rain (march 2016) in the islands although it was rainy season. We always carried in our day pack w/ our rain jackets in case. Day pack is a must have, buy one before the trip!! I have a REI Stuff Travel Daypack that runs $29. It zips into itself and when unfolded has over both shoulder straps with a convenient top zipper area and storage on each side for water bottles. ( I did day hikes in Grand Canyon with it - bottle holders fits Nalgenes bottles too! BUT DONT BOTHER TO BRING - the cruise provides unlimited bottled water!!!) The bag is great to stow a camera, extra space to shed clothing sandals and store bug spray sun lotion so on. You need free hands to get on and off the Zodiacs so this bag is perfect. Water bottles store handy on the side mesh pockets. Shoes - Slippers are provided no need to pack! You need comfy shoes to have while on the boat for breakfast and dinner. I brought a lightweight pair of Sanuks - perfect. I brought Croc sandals (also perfect) for beach hikes and wet landings- they are lightweight and water proof and fit in daypack. Many folks had Keen type Sandals or similar, they two are great but take longer to dry. I brought a pair of hiking shoes not knowing what to expect. Smart choice. I happen to own Scarpa Mojitos and they turned out to be perfect. Not heavy weight so perfect for walking in city and on lava or rough trails. Some folks had hiking boots, but unless you have weak ankles that is overkill and hot. If you do tend to roll your ankles then you may consider them as the lava walks on some islands were loose and footing had to be made carefully. So the shoes I packed - croc sandals, sanuk slip ons and lightweight trail hike shoes and extreme light weight running sneakers (only worn while on treadmill in gyms -not needed otherwise). What to pack - two bathing suits for snorkeling, they provide dive suits but you need the bathing suit underneath. No chaff shirt was needed. Invest in a cheap underwater camera, you won't regret it. Wet cloths in room dry slow thus reason for two suits. Some days we did two snorkels. By the way the deep water snorkels you jump out of zodiacs into at least 30 feet of water. They do not teach you how to snorkel so good to practice before trip if you never did it. They do provide anti fog gel. There is a ladder to climb to reenter the zodiac kind of like a pool ladder. WORTH IT TO SNORKEL, you may be tired but do it!! We swam with seal pups marine iguanas and turtles beside the fish!!! Water temps vary depending on the area in islands, warmest was 80, coldest mid 60s (freezing for this Florida kid!). I brought comfy casual cloths to wear on ship and used during breakfast and lunch. Dinner folks wore polo shirts and nice blouses. Shorts of course!! Not super fancy and no ties or suit jackets, Some sun dresses. Boat is not super cold with AC but was comfortable, so never needed long sleeves or sweater. Brought my lightweight Columbia safari hat to avoid the skin burning sun and also long sleeve lightweight Columbia beige fishing /safari style shirt. That shirt washes easy no wrinkles and dries fast!! two Long pants that zip off also easy to wash and dry. Bra and undies stay away from cotton on this trip. The water on the ship is safe in the showers and to brush teeth as the ship makes its own water, but drink bottled water and it is everywhere! Alcohol and soda flowed freely as well as fancy coffee drinks (coffee is STRONG so I drank (happily) cappuccinos. I averaged 10 or more bottles of water a day but it was hot and you sweat more than you realize. Beer was Equardorian but the light variety was only 3.3% alcohol so it was perfect with a lime for me!! Tons of wines and any mix drink and frozen drink you wanted. I would highly suggest investing in clothing that can be washed and rinsed and drys quickly and doesn't need ironing. Not that type of cruise!!!! NO COTTON!!! Just about everyone looked like a safari guide. Tan or olive was the smart typical color choice. I brought zip off pants which I was grateful for. Times they recommend long pants on hikes but then a bit into the walk you can unzip if not needed. DO NOT BRING ORANGE RED YELLOW OR PINK cloths to wear on hikes. BUGS and WASPS in particular are attracted to those bright colors. The guides would give warnings for hikes that had potential high areas of wasps. Bugs were never an issue, wasps were around in a few spots but seriously they zero in on the folks with the bright colors. Pick a low key color day pack as well! Needless to say the boat store made a killing on everyone buying safari shirts hats and pants. Plan ahead and go have a drink rather than wait to shop on the boat lol, but rest assured there are cloths available if you forget. Other suggestion is a neck buff. They also sell them on the ship for $22. All the boat drivers wear them as the sun is very strong!! I brought two and washed in sink and hung up in room to dry. They have biodegradable soap and the body soap worked well to wash lightweight clothes out. You sweat a lot!! We brought camp soap as well but the body soap is great and makes cloths smell fresh. GYM- SMALL!!! only a spin bike, treadmill and elliptical without electronics. Treadmill was perfect for me. There was a hot tub out side the gym on deck 6 as well but never used it. Folks who did were happy. Food - Well don't expect big cruise dinning. My partner rated food on scale of 1-10 a 2. I gave it a 6. I'm the chef at home so it was nice to have organic fruit and an omelet station every day. Breakfast was buffet, as was lunch. They always offered an outdoor BBQ but pizza and burgers and fries are not my thing. One day they had a massive BBQ with variety of shrimp and fish and meats, it was good. No lobster was ever offered this cruise. Dinner was an looooong event. Dinner everyone sat together at 730pm each night. We never escaped earlier than 930pm. Three course meals and tables were seating for 4,6,8,10 not assigned. You tend to sit with everyone at one point or another on this cruise. Service was excellent but food was not grand. Fish was good every night but my partner seemed to always get the piece that was raw or overcooked. Stay away from the meat. Deserts were also not great. Nice touches : Being handled cold wash cloth after climbing on board after hike or snorkel. Having a drink and fruit station set up after each excursion at top of steps. Being Given a hard covered Galapagos book. Last night being given a photo CD of pictures taken by guides during the week. Back in the Marriott the last Sunday afternoon after the cruise we had the option to go to the local souvenir market.They had a bus that took us to a market place with 100 tiny stores owned by locals. They sell leather goods, Panama hats, knit tops, blankets and trinkets. Most of the branded stuff said Equator. IMPORTANT -If you want Galapagos items and see something you like in the islands, then buy it although it is pricey. The only day we saw shops was on last day in Santa Cruz on the Darwin center hike in town. There are plenty of shops with Galapagos branded items you"ll walk past. Cash transactions are cheaper so bring US cash. Finally after our last included breakfast at the Marriott Monday morning Celebrity had a private van with Celebrity escort take us to the airport. The escort brought us to the AA gate and said goodbye. No one weighed any carry on baggage and they told everyone the rules are less stringent then they use to be. Wish we knew that, but the extra space was great in my carry on for souvenirs on the trip home. The charter flight both directions is Celebrity staff and passengers only and provides lunch and drinks. Customs in Galapagos was quick and the outgoing flight wait area in the Galapagos airport was seperate for Celebrity charter passengers. They offered cheese and fruit and coffee and tea and juice the day we were departing. Side note - we are in our early 50s, and there was only maybe 6 people younger than us (40s) and only one 18 year old kid. I don't know if this is the right trip for kids, they may bore quickly. This is not an ideal trip for disabled folks as you need to be able to hike on uneven terrain and climb in and out of the zodiacs. There are no elevators so you have to be able to climb steps on board as well. That said, the trip is not one that you need to be an olympian. The hikes are slow, but you want to enjoy everything you see rather than get a cardio workout in (use the treadmill is you want that cardio - I was only one of two aboard that did lol). We saw smaller boats in inlets and a variety of tour boats anchored in Santa Cruz. I think we made the right choice as Celebrity had top level Naturalist, very clean standards, we felt safe most staff spoke english and they had good equipment. No one complained of sea sickness although some passengers wore patches. Smaller vessels may not be as stable and some seemed smokey from fuel. Thumbs up to the Equator/Galapagos Celebrity employees, they took very good care of us. No sales pitches, everything included, no stress, great trip!! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2014
We were on the same cruise as the only British Couple and flew out to Quito On BA and Iberia via Madrid early Boxing Day morning arriving some 12 hours later. We were met at the Airport on arrival (we were the only couple) and arrived at ... Read More
We were on the same cruise as the only British Couple and flew out to Quito On BA and Iberia via Madrid early Boxing Day morning arriving some 12 hours later. We were met at the Airport on arrival (we were the only couple) and arrived at the hotel some 45 mins later around 9.45pm. We were lucky to be given an upgraded room. We enjoyed the food at the hotel both pre and post cruise. The included tour of Quito was good and the buffet lunch with traditional Ecuadorian singing and dancing Was excellent. Although we were fairly tired we went out on the afternoon trip to the Equatorial Line Monument. The evening meal was at La Gloria, a local restaurant we enjoyed this too. Now for the Cruise We were sold this as an "adults" cruise. This was not the case and slightly spoilt it for us. Probably being over Christmas and New Year altered the dynamics slightly. There were only 5 or 6 English speaking couples. The rest were made up of family groups, some large with 3 generations and some with young children. Also, quite a number of Spanish speaking South Americans. They all kept to their own groups and didn't mix so dining times gave you little choice of who to sit with. Luckily we made friends with the American couples. One of the American ladies was very upset at the "unsociable"situation. Most of the teens and 20 something's were a pain as far as hogging and sitting right on top of the Wifi "hot spot".They seemed to be on their phones/laptops 24/7. In fact some of them hardly seemed to leave the ship! My husband likes to keep in email contact with his 90 year old Mother. This was virtually impossible. Make no mistake, this is not your usual cruise. It's an "Expedition" ship. It doesn't matter how many cruise lines you've sailed on or how many you have done and we've done over 50 this is totally different. There is nothing to do on the ship during the day as your not expected to be there and have paid a hefty price to go see the spectacular wildlife. Something that LeaderLady failed to mention. We saw Boobies, Nazca and Blue-footed varieties. Marine and Land Iguanas. Galápagos Hawks, Waved Albatross, Tropic Birds, Mockingbirds, Frigate Birds, flightless comorants. Sea Lions, Sea Turtles, Penguins, Giant Tortoises, Darwin Finches,Flamingos and much more to see if you enjoy snorkelling in cold water. Just wildlife everywhere. You had to be careful not to step on anything. The only disappointment as far as seeing wildlife for me was that we didn't see the Red Footed Boobies or the recently discovered Pink Iguanas, both found on Isla Genovesa in the far north and not on any expedition itinerary. The Naturalists all Ecuadorian were all good. Some better than others. I did feel that the Spanish speaking guests should have gone out separately in their own group as there were many occasions when a lengthy Spanish conversation was conducted within the party of which we were not included. Every evening before dinner we were given a talk with slide show on what we should see the following day and the type of terrain and level of fitness required and recommendations as to footwear, clothing and if insect repellent was necessary. This information is also given in your Celebrity Today. Apart from 1 walk we chose the long walk every time. Paying all that money I wanted to see all I could. The ratio of guests to staff was 98/62. Our cabin was made up 3 times a day. There was plenty of hot water. Only a couple of channels on the TV and very little drawer space. The ship did sway a bit some nights but it's a small ship so its to be expected. No, there isn't a lot to do in the evenings after dinner, there was always music and dancing. Karaoke one night. Many went straight to bed. It's very full on and not what I would describe as a holiday. We were up at 6.30, breakfast at 7. The long walk usually started at 8am. Back on the ship by 11.30, lunch at 12. Afternoon walk 3pm back to the ship by 6.pm then cocktail party from 7pm talk at 7.15 followed by dinner. It was hard not to over indulge on the all inclusive drinks. I did suffer one morning after to many Pisco Sours the previous night!! The food was good and the Lobster excellent. We ate out on deck one night, wonderful. Our first night on the ship we were standing at the stern. It was dark and we were watching the stars when we heard a strange noise. We looked down to the landing platform where there were 3 sea lions asleep catching a ride. They were there for quite a while. All in all we really enjoyed this trip. Not the 5 star I expected but a good 4 1/2 I would definitely like to do the trip again at a different season and the Inner Loop. I would just ensure that it wouldn't be during school/college break. Whilst waiting at Baltra Airport for our flight back to Quito I did notice that the newly arriving passengers were all adults and seemingly couples. We booked this over 18 months ago when on the Celebrity Infinity. At that time there were no deals. We had a £400 cruise credit but they wouldn't let us use it for the xpedition. They are doing deals now though. We did a Transatlantic in October when Celebrity were heavily promoting the Galápagos and offering up to $500 onboard credit for your current cruise. So if your thinking about this trip it might pay to book onboard if you have a forthcoming Celebrity cruise booked.   Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2013
My husband and I took the 10-day Quito, Ecuador/Xpedition Galapagos Islands cruise in late April, itinerary 'B'. As most other reviews have said, the trip is fabulous with great hiking, warm, humid weather, amazing wildlife and ... Read More
My husband and I took the 10-day Quito, Ecuador/Xpedition Galapagos Islands cruise in late April, itinerary 'B'. As most other reviews have said, the trip is fabulous with great hiking, warm, humid weather, amazing wildlife and fun guides. Snorkeling is great, and the food on the ship is very good, as cruise food goes. A really great once in a lifetime trip. Some issues that have not been mentioned: if you wear glasses and don't have contacts and want to snorkel, you might want to bring along your own personal prescription snorkel goggles. I've found some hotels (in Hawaii for example) carry some general prescription pairs for glasses-wearers, but there are none on the Xpedition. So I was out of luck to be able to see well during snorkeling trips. Probably a good investment anyway as they are not too expensive (I hear you can get a decent pair that works for around $30, not custom of course). Yes, the ship rocks. Like crazy it rocks, but only on a couple of nights. Pretty funny to hear deck chairs crashing at night. Had to hang onto the edge of the bed. One word of caution: the night before you leave Quito for Baltra, while staying at the JW Marriot hotel in Quito, the Celebrity personnel request you bring your checked luggage down to the lobby to have it 'inspected' by the Galapagos customs personnel. They will keep your luggage overnight and transfer it to your ship cabin by the next afternoon. This is fine, except do NOT leave anything even remotely valuable in this checked bag because it may be taken. I unfortunately lost my binoculars and camera charger during this 'inspection'. I think it happens all the time because when I reported it to guest services, I saw many other 'entries' in their record book. Also, don't be alarmed when you are on the plane to Baltra, and the stewardesses 'fumigate' the inside of the plane while you are in there with bug spray. Eeesh. Oh, and pretty much 80% of the passengers were over 60. No kids, and not much ethnic diversity. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2013
My husband and I are in our early 40s and this was our second trip on Xpedition. We took the 10-night cruisetour in Sept. 2007 and enjoyed it so much that we wanted to return. We decided to take the 13-night Galapagos cruise B with Machu ... Read More
My husband and I are in our early 40s and this was our second trip on Xpedition. We took the 10-night cruisetour in Sept. 2007 and enjoyed it so much that we wanted to return. We decided to take the 13-night Galapagos cruise B with Machu Picchu this time. Xpedition only had a single itinerary last time so we had a hard time picking between the A and B itineraries for this trip. There were aspects of each that we really wanted to see again. North Seymour Island was the deciding factor for us since that was our favorite stop from the previous trip. We booked cabin 502 (same as previous cruise) to be close to the Blue Finch Bar. On our previous cruise, the bar was open so we were able to run out the door, get drinks, and return to our cabin - very convenient. The bar was never open for this cruise so we had to go downstairs to deck 4 for drinks, but not really a big deal. We recognized some faces from our previous cruise. The cabin layout was changed slightly to add a loveseat, which made it more cramped than before but we managed. There is adequate storage in the cabin and in the bathroom. The beds are not very comfortable at all - thin, lumpy mattresses. I asked about getting a foam pad for the bed but was told they don't have any. There is only 1 -110V outlet but a couple 220V outlets. My camera battery charger will use either so I was able to charge my batteries off the 220V and use the 110V for other things. I noticed when I had my laptop plugged into the 110V supply that the power would fluctuate quite a bit. My battery symbol would change from "charging" to "battery" every few seconds. A couple people onboard mentioned that their camera batteries didn't seem to be charging correctly. I didn't have a problem with mine - the 220V supply seemed steady. The internet connection (Wifi) was unreliable. We were initially given 3 free hours. I used about 10 minutes of mine then lost the connection and couldn't get it back to log out. I lost all my minutes but was given more after I mentioned the problem at guest services. There were many times that I was unable to connect at all. The staff at guest services told me that I was the only person onboard who was having problems and it was because I was using a Windows based computer (which she called "obsolete technology") rather than an iPad. As she was explaining that I needed to buy an iPad, another passenger using an iPad came in to complain that he couldn't get a connection. I could understand if she had said the connection will be slow or even non-existant since we were in the Galapagos, but saying the problem was due to my using WIndows didn't make any sense. I think overall the food was better this trip than last time. Xpedition offered a nice variety of choices and I was mostly satisfied. There were a few things (chicken and grilled items) that turned out dry. The ship was still having problems with stabilizers. I didn't get seasick, but I was almost rolled out of bed one night due to the ship's rocking. We had problems with drawers and doors opening/closing due to the rocking. It was very annoying at night. We tied the handles together on the closet to hold them closed. We shoved Kleenex between the drawers and casing to keep them from opening/closing. Those are tricks we picked up from previous cruises where we had occasional problems. On Xpedition it was every night. In general the guides do a good job of explaining the excursions available. The one failing was Sullivan Bay. I don't think they correctly depicted how rough the terrain really was for the longer hike. The trail was a dry landing but required being able to take a large step out of the rocking zodiac then walking across sharp lava rocks with loose stones. I am very mobile and brought hiking shoes with ankle support so I was fine. It was also very sunny that day so the black lava rocks were really hot. An elderly couple on the tour did not realize how bad the trail was. They were having problems keeping up with the rest of the group. I informed our guide that they had dropped way back and we should let them catch up. His reply was they should have picked another excursion and he kept walking. I agree that they should not have taken this walk, but I was upset that the guide showed such disregard for their safety. If one of them had fallen, they could have been seriously injured on the sharp rocks. Celebrity does a fanastic job with the Galapagos portion of the trip. I only wish the Machu Picchu portion had been that good. Of the passengers onboard, 24 of us continued to Lima. We flew from Baltra to Quito on the charter flight with the all the other passengers from Xpedition. Once in Quito, we were told that we would have to wait about 10 minutes for our luggage to get off the plane before checking our bags for the flight to Lima. We were left standing in the middle of the terminal for almost an hour before our luggage showed up. We checked in for our flight to Lima then had another couple of hours to wait at the airport for the flight. Celebrity booked us at the Colony Club hotel in Lima, which is a beautiful facility. However, by the time we arrived in Lima, got through immigration and customs, and spent an hour driving to the hotel, it was almost 11 PM by the time we got to our rooms. We had to leave in the morning to drive back to the airport to catch our flight to Cusco so we were only in the room for about 9 hours. I would have preferred a hotel closer to the airport to eliminate the hour transit time each way. We stayed at the Montesario Hotel in Cusco, which is a converted monastery. The rooms are rather small but the location is nice. When we arrived at the hotel, my checked bag was missing. Our guide didn't seem to understand why I was upset about the missing bag. He kept telling me that I needed to go on a tour and I could find my bag later. I was adament that I needed that bag since it had almost all of my clothes. He eventually agreed to have another staff member look for it. It had been delivered to the wrong room and was finally located. I also noticed that my name was misspelled on the paperwork for the hotel. I pointed this out to our guide who said it wasn't a problem. It was true that it wasn't a problem for the hotel but would be a problem later. We were divided into 2 groups of 12 for the tours, each with a guide. I was not impressed with the quality of our guide. She didn't like to answer questions and would repeat the same information several times. A couple times when people asked questions she would say that she didn't want to discuss that right now. Several people in the other group had nothing but praise for their guide so I wished we had been in his group. We saw several of the Incan sites in the Sacred Valley but also got stuck doing the obligatory cruiseline shop tours. I would rather skip the alpaca sweater shop and silver shop since those items hold no interest for me. I know some people feel that a cruiseline approved shop is preferable and many people made purchases at the shops. The train ride to Machu Picchu was nice but I wished we had a couple more hours to spend there. The city is facinating and really needs a full day to explore it rather than just the 3 hours we had. We returned to Lima the day after Machu Picchu. When I checked in for the flight from Cusco, the agent informed me that the names on my passport and boarding pass didn't match. Celebrity had booked the flight and had misspelled my name again. I asked the agent what would happen and he told me that I might not be allowed on the plane and would have to buy another ticket if one was available using my correctly spelled name. I was upset since I had expected Celebrity to make sure my information was correct. My name was spelled correctly for all the Galapagos paperwork. I informed our guide again about the misspelling of my name and asked what would happen if they wouldn't let me board the plane. He shrugged it off and said I would be responsible for purchasing another ticket and getting to Lima on my own. I know how strict they are about passport name exactly matching the boarding pass name for US flights so I was afraid I wouldn't be able to fly to Lima with the group. Since it wasn't long before our flight, my husband and I wanted to go through security rather than sitting in the lounge to see if I would have a problem. Our Celebrity guide wouldn't come with us so we went on our own. The agent at the security area didn't speak English very well so she had us move aside while she called another agent over who spoke some English. He asked us a few questions before speaking to the first agent in Spanish. My Spanish is very limited and from the way they were gesturing, I kept thinking that they weren't going to let me through, but he finally gave me my passport and boarding pass and let me into the gate area. I was so relieved that I must have said "Gracias" a dozen times. The flight was uneventful after that and we arrived in Lima around noon. We were supposed to make a 45 minute stop at a museum then have lunch. Our guide got bogged down in the details at the museum so our 45-minute stop took over 1.5 hours. We continued the tour and were supposed to have some time at the end to visit a few shops but our guide said we had taken too much time at the museum so no shopping. I was a disappointed because I wanted to pick up something for a nephew. I really enjoyed the Galapagos cruise. I don't know that I would do it a third time, but the second trip was definitely worthwhile since we got to see the islands during dry season previously and rainy season this time. The tour of Machu Picchu was a reminder of why I stopped taking ship tours. I thought it would be nice to leave the planning details to someone else, but I realized what a mistake that was. I prefer to set my own pace and make my own arrangements for what I want to see. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2013
We took the eight-day Galapagos cruise on the Celebrity Xpedition. While the Galapagos animals and environment are the core of the trip, Celebrity does finesse the supporting logistics. Like many visitors, we weighed up the big ship/small ... Read More
We took the eight-day Galapagos cruise on the Celebrity Xpedition. While the Galapagos animals and environment are the core of the trip, Celebrity does finesse the supporting logistics. Like many visitors, we weighed up the big ship/small ship option. The Xpedition, at 100 pax, is the largest vessel operating in the Galapagos. Other vessels are 15-20 pax. Some friends said a larger ship may not be able to get close in, maybe Zodiac transfers will take longer? But we detected no difference and these guys are good at mobilising people into boats. So, any delays would be more than compensated by having much more space, menu variations and other 'large boat' facilities, like the spa. Airport meet and greet arrangements were good, as were transfers between Quito and Baltra, the embarkation port. The charter flight was good - B737 with meal service for a two-hour flight. The JW Marriott in Quito is a fine hotel and the day tour of Quito was first rate. Baggage arrangements were also first class. The vessel is well suited to the locale, which is essentially a new island or site every day, with a morning and afternoon excursion. There is enough time to rest up between the morning and afternoon excursions. The vessel is flat-bottomed with shallow draught, so is subject to a lot of lateral movement, even at anchor. Cabins are comfortable, a bit small (except suites on decks 5 and 6). Bathrooms are good and bedding acceptable. Staff on board were hard to fault in any way. Bar service was fantastic and service in the restaurants was terrific. The Maitre de, Se'or Fernando, is one of the most attentive hosts we have encountered in many years of travel. One evening, when the restaurant was crowded and I mentioned I had a hearing problem, Sr. Fernando set up a table on an outside deck (upper level) and personally delivered our dinner and poured the wine! Quite exceptional. This gentleman should be cloned by all cruise lines. The cruise director, Sr Jorge was also first rate. The naturalists were excellent, and exhibited broad knowledge of flora, fauna and landscape. One of the primary interests for us was the geology and geomorphology of the Galapagos. And the ocean currents and climatic issues. While the guides satisfied most general queries, they may not have the depth required for the visitor with a strong interest in this area. In summary, spend more time in pre-reading on geomorphology and climate and less on the animals. The naturalists know the animals backwards. Read Less
Celebrity Xpedition Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.4
Dining 4.0 4.3
Entertainment 3.0 3.6
Public Rooms 3.0 4.5
Fitness Recreation 3.0 3.8
Family 1.0 3.8
Shore Excursion 5.0 4.9
Enrichment 4.0 4.7
Service 4.0 4.8
Value For Money 3.0 4.5
Rates 5.0 4.5

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