My sister and I needed to do something different this Christmas and decided on a cruise, our first. We chose a small ship and warmer climate. The Oceana didn't have the most modern interior, but was beautifully maintained and had an air of quiet elegance about her. She was spotless, and the Christmas decorations were spectacular. We had a twin cabin with balcony, and although it was small there was plenty of storage (thank goodness as my sister took the kitchen sink along)! The bathroom really was small, but when we hit the Bay of Biscay we were grateful! Our Cabin Steward was delightful, and the cabin was always serviced on our return from breakfast. For the most part we decided to eat in the main dining room (Free Dining). Lots of shiny wood, white table linen etc., very elegant. The menus offered plenty of choice for all meals; the food was good, though not excellent. Presentation was poor in that the plates could have been 'dressed'. The Waiters worked so hard, nothing was too much trouble, they were fast, efficient and extremely pleasant. I was impressed that some actually remembered our names. Excellent touch. The entertainment was good, with two shows an evening there was usually something to see, the quizzes were great fun too. Daytime activities were a little thin, several of the 'talks' were given by 'experts' who appeared to be there to sell their product. Oceana is a smaller vessel, but even so the shops were poor, expensive, and didn't have simple thing that passengers might run out of, or might have forgotten to take with them. Staff throughout the ship were a credit to P&O, always on hand, always polite, smiling, and always ready to help. In Madeira we took the motorbike and sidecar excursion which was worth every penny, Three hours with a personal guide who was so knowledgeable about the City and its history. Highly recommend it. By contrast the Tuk Tuk tour of Lisbon was hugely overpriced at almost £45 more, there were two panaramic photo stops, a visit to the Se de Lisboa Cathedral, and two stops to taste locally produced food. The driver either had no knowledge of the area, or couldn't speak English. Not recommeded. Embarkation and disembarkation were so incredibily easy that neither my sister or I will ever fly again if there is the option to sail! The only down side was a distinct lack of 50-60 year old passengers, but that might have been due to it being Christmas. I hope so because we enjoyed the intimacy of the smaller ship - our first cruise was a blast and we will certainly join P&O again!

The Sisters Christmas 2018

Oceana Cruise Review by Bogsnorklers

2 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: December 2018
  • Destination: Europe
My sister and I needed to do something different this Christmas and decided on a cruise, our first. We chose a small ship and warmer climate.

The Oceana didn't have the most modern interior, but was beautifully maintained and had an air of quiet elegance about her. She was spotless, and the Christmas decorations were spectacular.

We had a twin cabin with balcony, and although it was small there was plenty of storage (thank goodness as my sister took the kitchen sink along)! The bathroom really was small, but when we hit the Bay of Biscay we were grateful! Our Cabin Steward was delightful, and the cabin was always serviced on our return from breakfast.

For the most part we decided to eat in the main dining room (Free Dining). Lots of shiny wood, white table linen etc., very elegant. The menus offered plenty of choice for all meals; the food was good, though not excellent. Presentation was poor in that the plates could have been 'dressed'.

The Waiters worked so hard, nothing was too much trouble, they were fast, efficient and extremely pleasant. I was impressed that some actually remembered our names. Excellent touch.

The entertainment was good, with two shows an evening there was usually something to see, the quizzes were great fun too. Daytime activities were a little thin, several of the 'talks' were given by 'experts' who appeared to be there to sell their product.

Oceana is a smaller vessel, but even so the shops were poor, expensive, and didn't have simple thing that passengers might run out of, or might have forgotten to take with them.

Staff throughout the ship were a credit to P&O, always on hand, always polite, smiling, and always ready to help.

In Madeira we took the motorbike and sidecar excursion which was worth every penny, Three hours with a personal guide who was so knowledgeable about the City and its history. Highly recommend it.

By contrast the Tuk Tuk tour of Lisbon was hugely overpriced at almost £45 more, there were two panaramic photo stops, a visit to the Se de Lisboa Cathedral, and two stops to taste locally produced food. The driver either had no knowledge of the area, or couldn't speak English. Not recommeded.

Embarkation and disembarkation were so incredibily easy that neither my sister or I will ever fly again if there is the option to sail!

The only down side was a distinct lack of 50-60 year old passengers, but that might have been due to it being Christmas. I hope so because we enjoyed the intimacy of the smaller ship - our first cruise was a blast and we will certainly join P&O again!
Bogsnorklers’s Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Embarkation
Dining
Public Rooms
Entertainment
Cabin
Shore Excursions
Service
Onboard Experience
Free Price Drop Alerts
Get P&O Oceana price drops
250,000+ people have entered their email

Cabin Review

Cabin A626
Clean, well kept. Small, plenty of storage
  Oceana Deck Plans