2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
We chose this cruise due to its unique Itinerary. We've had enough of St. Petersburg, which dominates the other Scandinavian cruises. We had never been to Iceland, the Faroe Islands or the Shetland Islands, or most of the other stops ... Read More
We chose this cruise due to its unique Itinerary. We've had enough of St. Petersburg, which dominates the other Scandinavian cruises. We had never been to Iceland, the Faroe Islands or the Shetland Islands, or most of the other stops in Norway, Denmark or Sweden. My wife has never seen Norway. We loved Explorer during our Panama Canal New Year's cruise at the beginning of the year. It sails superbly, even in rough weather. Explorer is one of our three favorite cruise ships, the others being Oceania Riviera and Marina (whence came Explorer's wonderful teaching kitchen, pan-Asian restaurant, and spa layout). Voyager and Mariner would come next on our list. The infinity pool is underutilized; people seem not to realize it's open to everyone. We went through the Panama Canal from there; far better view than from the Observation Lounge one criticism is the infrared "sauna," which isn't close to being hot enough for sauna lovers. Also, running out of aqavit on a Scandinavian cruise is inexcusable! Food and service were excellent. We favor Pacific Rim and Prime 7, but Chartreuse was very popular too, though there is a strong split opinion; we much prefer Jacques on Oceania). Compass Rose is far better than the MDR on Oceania, but try to get a table in the quieter back rooms. One secret is the superb authentic Irish Coffee made in the Cafe. Entertainment as good, especially the British comedian. Smithsonian lecturer was knowledgeable but a very mediocre monotone speaker; Regent needs to find more dynamic speakers. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2017
Fortunately for us our inclusive pre-cruise hotel in Reykjavik was in a great location in the old town, however talking to many of our fellow passengers it appears we were very lucky and most were in hotels some distance from the city ... Read More
Fortunately for us our inclusive pre-cruise hotel in Reykjavik was in a great location in the old town, however talking to many of our fellow passengers it appears we were very lucky and most were in hotels some distance from the city centre. Taking advantage of our pre-cruise time we took a privately arranged Golden Circle Tour, which despite the so-so weather was an amazing day out giving a great introduction to the history and geology of Iceland. Embarkation was by far the worse we have ever experienced with a huge queue outside on the dock before check-in. Fortunately the weather was ok as that wait would have been horrible in the rain. However, once onboard with a glass of champagne and efficient check-in, the wait was quickly forgotten. This was our second cruise on the Explorer, the first being one of the early cruises post launch in 2016. On that cruise we felt the majority of the cruise staff were very inexperienced with many of the waiting staff making the most basic of mistakes. Fortunately a year on, service is much improved with the majority of bar and restaurant staff being highly competent and even remembering preferred drinks after a couple of evenings. The itinerary was fantastic with 2 other ports in Iceland, then onto Faroe Islands and the Shetlands followed by 3 days experiencing the Norwegian fjords, along with ports of call of Skagen, Oslo and Gothenburg before disembarking in Copenhagen. The choice of excursions at each port ranges from sedentary bus tours to active cycling or hiking tours. They are well organised and usually led by informative and entertaining guides. Group size is limited and we’ve never felt the size to be too large to be able to fully enjoy ourselves. There is an excellent choice of restaurants, all of them of extremely high quality. Our least favourite is the evening Italian restaurant Sette Mari where service can be quite chaotic, with either rushed or desperately slow service. It’s very popular so would be better if this was a reservation only restaurant to avoid the long queues or if the weather doesn’t allow for outside dining consider opening up the whole of the restaurant. At least one of the speciality restaurants is open at lunchtime which makes for a relaxed change from the more usual buffet fare available at the Pool or La Veranda. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2017
This cruise took us from Iceland, through the Faroe and Shetland Islands, to Norway, Sweden, and ending in Copenhagen. What a wonderful experience - we will find it difficult to “go back” to regular cruising. The service was ... Read More
This cruise took us from Iceland, through the Faroe and Shetland Islands, to Norway, Sweden, and ending in Copenhagen. What a wonderful experience - we will find it difficult to “go back” to regular cruising. The service was outstanding, drinks were generous and ubiquitous, our cabin was so luxurious that we didn’t mind spending time in it, excursions were informative and geared to the capabilities of the “over 55” set that is the primary passenger profile. Beautiful ship with original artwork, glass sculptures, etc. Only complaint is that, since airfare is included, they make the arrangements, and you have no say in your air itinerary unless you pay a $175pp fee. Domestic airfare is coach, not what you expect for a luxury line that transports you in Business Class for overseas travel. Our next cruise leaves Miami and ends up in San Francisco - we don’t expect to have to travel coach cross-country, and the cost for upgrade is very high. The rebate if you choose not to use their airfare is not enough to cover travel cost. We do like the convenience and security of using them to book air, but wish that they would just include travel arrangements that are suitable for a luxury vacation for ALL of their cruises.. We did have to stand outside in a cold wind with slight rain, waiting to embark onto the ship. Other passengers told us that having to stand in line out in the cold (and it’s cold in Iceland even in August) was not normal. Did not like that. Hotel in Reykjavik was poor, but they are building more new ones all around. Our room was small, no A/C so we had to keep the window open even in the rain, listening to the traffic below. Mold in the shower. I suggest RSSC find a better hotel there or get the Blue to improve. Read Less
Seven Seas Explorer Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.6
Dining 5.0 4.4
Entertainment 4.0 3.6
Public Rooms 5.0 4.6
Fitness Recreation 4.0 4.2
Family 3.0 4.2
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.7
Enrichment 4.5 3.7
Service 5.0 4.4
Value For Money 3.5 3.7
Rates N/A N/A

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