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We liked the ports of call & the fact that we could leave from Newcastle. Having never sailed from there before we stayed in South Shields the night before to make the journey to the port easier. We had asked TUI about wheelchair assistance to the ship & was told that Tui did not offer that service( at any of their ports worldwide) but we could take our own wheelchair. Arrived at the port around 10-30 to be told TUI had a policy of not letting passengers into the pre- booked parking area till 11-45 so we tried again at 11-35 to be in a cue of around 20 + vehicles, with nearly 200 already parked. In the embarkation hall there were wheelchairs available if required & early boarding. The boarding process was quite lengthy with periods of standing in line waiting for the shuttle bus to the ship. The ship was quite well set out & easy to get round. We used the main dining room most nights & the service ranged from very good to awful, sadly more awful times & the food choices terrible, no better in the buffet either. For us the entertainment was of a pretty poor standard, so we did our best to avoid it. Ports & shore excursions were very good & well organised. On the final 2 days my wife was feeling unwell( either a cold or flu ) we think due to the A/C mainly in the cabin. A couple of days after arriving home I also became unwell & 1 week later we are both under the weather & unable to go about our normal day to day activities. This was only our second TUI cruise & will be our last!

Nice Ship, Shame about the food!

Marella Explorer Cruise Review by DAVE2IRENE

2 people found this helpful
Trip Details
We liked the ports of call & the fact that we could leave from Newcastle.

Having never sailed from there before we stayed in South Shields the night before to make the journey to the port easier. We had asked TUI about wheelchair assistance to the ship & was told that Tui did not offer that service( at any of their ports worldwide) but we could take our own wheelchair. Arrived at the port around 10-30 to be told TUI had a policy of not letting passengers into the pre- booked parking area till 11-45 so we tried again at 11-35 to be in a cue of around 20 + vehicles, with nearly 200 already parked.

In the embarkation hall there were wheelchairs available if required & early boarding. The boarding process was quite lengthy with periods of standing in line waiting for the shuttle bus to the ship.

The ship was quite well set out & easy to get round.

We used the main dining room most nights & the service ranged from very good to awful,

sadly more awful times & the food choices terrible, no better in the buffet either.

For us the entertainment was of a pretty poor standard, so we did our best to avoid it.

Ports & shore excursions were very good & well organised.

On the final 2 days my wife was feeling unwell( either a cold or flu ) we think due to the A/C mainly in the cabin. A couple of days after arriving home I also became unwell & 1 week later we are both under the weather & unable to go about our normal day to day activities.

This was only our second TUI cruise & will be our last!
DAVE2IRENE’s Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Embarkation
Dining
Public Rooms
Entertainment
Cabin
Fitness & Recreation
Shore Excursions
Service
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Cabin Review

Cabin 10025
What a waste of space ! A large balcony with just a relative narrow open space to let in sunlight. Seems as though they had taken 6 feet off the room to increase the balcony.
Just a glass door to let in the outside light & solid panels where there would normally be glass windows making the cabin quite dark & gloomy.
On the plus side our cabin steward ( DEWA ) was brilliant. Seemed like we only had to leave the cabin for 20 minutes & it was cleaned etc on our return.

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews