Good Ports-Questionable excursions!

Serenade of the Seas Cruise Review to Europe - Northern Europe


Contributor Level: Purser
Experience: 7+ cruises
Review: 1
Helpful Votes: 5

Overall Rating:

4.0 out of 5
Verified Review
13 Night Ultimate Scandinavia & Russia (Stockholm To Copenhagen)
Sail Date: July 26, 2015
Ship: Serenade of the Seas
Cabin Type: Balcony
Cabin Number: 9600
Traveled As: Couple
Reviewed: 2 years ago

If you want a snapshot of the Baltic this is the cruise to take.  The ship was very comfortable and our cabin near the Centrum deck 9 was very quiet.  Centrum entertainment was very good and half of the Showroom presentations were of high quality while the rest was just OK.

The food and variety was very good, especially lunches in the Windjammer.  Unfortunately Windjammer experiences can be poor as there is not enough seating or staff to continuously clear tables.  We only had dinner there once after a long excursion to Berlin; however this was a terrible ordeal because many excursion returned to the ship late forcing most people to the Windjammer and not the Dining Room.  My Time dining in the Reflections dining room was very good. Reasonable variety and very good service.

The quality of the excursion guide often dictated the quality of the excursion.  If your guide had a clear loud voice or provided headsets and receivers.  This should be a requirement for all excursions!  Since Royal Caribbean provides little information on the excursions or the ports you really have to do your homework to decide an itinerary.  

We have used the excursions offered by and found then to be of high quality and good value.  Groups are smaller and they are offered at lower prices.  Since we tend to be risk averse we only use them when the ship is not leaving port.  With the higher priced ship excursion you are guaranteed that the shop won't leave with out you.

 

 

Food and Dining

3 out of 5
Dining room experience generally very good however the Windjammer is too small to handle large crowds, especially when large numbers arrive after lengthy tours and the dining room is unavailable. There is not enough space and not enough staff to clear off the tables. On the plus side a lot of variety and quality for lunch at Windjammer. Dinner variety and quality not very good.

Onboard Activities

3 out of 5

Entertainment

3 out of 5
Gr8 orchestra and Centrum entertainment. Shows were either very good or just OK 50:50

Service and Staff

5 out of 5
Accommodating and very friendly and helpful

Ship Quality

5 out of 5

Cabin / Stateroom

5 out of 5
Lots of room and quiet. Well kept by the steward

Ship Tip

Do your homework on the ports. The ship gives out little information because they want you to buy their excursion. Some of which had questionable value. This is important since the ship descriptions are incredibly vague making it difficult to make a good choice.

1 out of 5
City excursion including Vasa Museum had a very poor guide that had a low voice and talked into her shoulder; she did not respond to complaints. This and all the other tours had large numbers making it difficult to get up close and in the direction of her talking.
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Beautiful Medieval town, unfortunately tour guide did not have much to say. Narrow streets and very crowded look-out points
5 out of 5
City highlights gave good insight as to life before and after independence
3 out of 5
5 out of 5
Berlin tour was excellent, albeit long-12.5 hrs. The Warnemunde area looked like a ni9ce place to explore
5 out of 5
Beautiful quaint and friendly city. Get a map from the information booth and spend the day exploring.
5 out of 5
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