Marco Polo Cruise Review by welshy74
- Sail Date: June 2018
- Destination: British Isles & Western Europe
This was my 11th cruse and the smallest and oldest vessel I have sailed as my past ships have been on the super liners from RCI (majority), MSC, P+O etc. I really wasn't sure what to expect but I knew I had to keep expectations low and not compare to past ships.
I wouldn't say I was pleasantly surprised but I was not disappointed either. The ship was slightly bigger than I anticipated and certainly showing her age, however it does look very tired and extremely dated.
We took this cruise (Weekend to Honfleur) as it was good value and sailed from my home town (Cardiff) so being a cruise addict I really could not resist the chance to sail from a port just a few minutes drive from my home. Embarkation was very quick and organised. Our luggage was waiting outside the cabin door as soon as we boarded and this is certainly not something I am used to on the large ships so that was a pleasant surprise.
The cabin (504) was ok. Dated and tired decor but cosy with a large window, good storage and usual size bathroom. The ship does not have balcony cabins and I really missed not having my own outside space to chill out.
The MDR was a little drab and they certainly squeeze you in but it was pleasant enough. Food was fairly good, nothing fancy or luxurious but everything was tasty enough and service was good. Wine is reasonably priced with good wine from £15 a bottle and drinks at the various bars were also reasonable with cocktails of the day, beers and cider at £3.50 or more. The one thing I did not feel on this ship that I have done on RCI, NCL etc is the feeling of being ripped off. A feeling I especially get on the American ships.
Entertainment was very good and the entertainment team were as good, if not better, than some of the bigger ships. Had they had a proper theater or better facilities than I honestly think they could be the best entertainment team I have seen at sea.
As this was a weekend cruise we only had one port of call and that was Honfleur. This has to be one of the most beautiful ports I have ever been to. We were so lucky with stunning spring sunshine which complimented this picture perfect port. The ship docked close to the town but there were regular free shuttle buses throughout the day. As it was such a lovely day we chose to walk which took around 25min but it not the most picturesque so recommend the bus.
All in all we had a very enjoyable weekend but this is certainly not a ship for me. A weekend is fine but I would not chose CMV for a holiday as they do not cater for what I want out of a cruise. I want a bit of luxury, more facilities, bigger ship and I don't want the feeling I am on a ferry. We are also in our early 40s and young minded but CMV clearly cater for the 70+ market. However it is good value of money, you pay for what you get and this ship really does not pretend to be anything else. So if a cheap weekend deal does come up again they I would certainly do it again, but for a weekend only!
Few points I was not happy with - Pool and hot tubs close early, service was sometimes quite bad, especially from Eastern European bar staff, snacks not available all day so if you are a late sitting and you fancy a snack around 5pm forget it and more sun loungers needed on deck.
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The ship does not have balcony cabins and I really missed not having my own outside space to chill out.
Port & Shore Excursion Reviews
HonfleurOne of the most beautiful ports I have been to. Its lovely just to wander around the cobbles streets and take in the beautiful buildings. Cider is a specialty, as is seafood, so a seafood lunch washed down with Normandy cider is perfect in the sunshine on the old harbour.View All 51 Honfleur Cruise Port Reviews
We also visited the small but very unique Musee Satie which was very interesting.
View Cruise Critic's Honfleur Cruise Port Review