Marella Discovery Cruise Review by Stuarthoy
- Sail Date: February 2019
- Destination: Asia
( Vietnam, Malaysia, Thailand, Cambodia, Singapore).
We also booked some of the excursions before with Tui because we hadn't visited any of the places before apart from Thailand, so were not sure about what we could or couldn't do on our own.
Our cabin was 8029, which had a wall to wall glass window, which was really good. Where the cabin was situated was down a small corridor on its own which made it very quiet. It was also close to the lifts, which again made it an ideal location. The cabi was very roomy and the cleaner was excellent and changed the towels/sheets every other day.
The Dining experience was very good but if you wanted to eat after 7.45pm then you had a wait of about 20 -40 minutes. All the food in the Italian and the 47 degrees restaurants were good, there was plenty of choice and the menu changed each evening. The waiters were all happy and couldn't do enough for you.
The Steak and Turf Specialty Restaurant is a must to visit but gets booked up very quickly.
The entertainment during the day was fine and the shows at night were stunning. Service for drinks in the evening was excellent, there were always waiters on hand to get your orders.
Drinks on deck while you were sunbathing were good and always cold.
Shore Excursions at the various ports were hit and miss.
Many of the excursions that we had prebooked before we left were much cheaper when you docked and asked the taxi drivers. All the drivers had a sheet with pictures of the places you could visit with them and you could then pick which ones you went to and which you wanted to avoid. This was better than going on the Ship Excursion because on one trip you visited about 3 temples which after one Temple the others look the same and have the same statues, people were coming back from the Ship Excursion saying they were " Templed Out" but on your own you could go to one Temple and then visit somewhere else. You saved about £30-£60.
We went on a Ship Excursion entitled " Highlights of Sihanoukville by Tuk Tuk" in Cambodia.
The excursion was a shambles, we were put on a fleet of Tuk Tuks, The told to get off them because they were the wrong ones, we then ended up on the Tuk Tuk from hell. 4 people squashed into a Tuk Tuk facing each other with our feet on the spare wheel. We thought the driver had the radio on but when we stopped we found that he was actually watching a Kung Fu movie on his phone that was propped up in front of the steering wheel.
When we got off the Tuk we found we all had blue paint on our hands where we had been gripping the sideshow tightly because the Tuk was so unsafe, on the way back the exhaust blew. I could go on but having complained to the Ships Destination team we were only offered 30% refund which we declined because we felt from a safety point of view all we had done was hang on for dear life and not enjoyed the experience one bit.
If we had booked a Tuk ourselves we could have chosen a roadworthy one and seen much more for less money.
So I would recommend that you do all the trips independently, one because it a lot cheaper, if you do a trip in every port then you can save up to £200 and secondly where we thought going with Tui and Marbella would be safer as they advertise that they use reputable companies for the trips, this was clearly not the case in Cambodia.
Having said that, I would recommend the cruise, the ship, and the places that it visited but I would strongly suggest that you do your excursions independently because you see more, get there quicker and can see what you want to see. Always negotiate your price first and then go explore!
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