Brugges 3 Day on Ventura

Ventura Cruise Review to Europe

Cruises: 4-6 cruises
Reviews: 6
Helpful Votes: 116

Overall rating:

4 out of 5

Western Europe

Sail date: October 27, 2016

Ship: Ventura

Cabin type: Balcony

Traveled as: Couple

Reviewed: 4 years ago

Review summary

This was our first cruise with P&O, previously used NCL in European cruises. But this was an excellently priced mini-break departing from Southampton to Brugges for 3 days and choose this to coincide with a 50th birthday treat. 

First impressions on arriving at port and embarkation terminal weren't good. It was approx 1:10pm and their terminal building was crammed, obviously we'd coincided our arrival with peak time. The process to manage this was via guests being given a colour and letter on entry to terminal and having to find seats in the packed waiting area. P&O then call out each group eventually allowing you to then join a queue for checking in. Compared to prior check ins with NCL, it seems P&O operate this process with minimal staff/positiions, hence the 90 minute wait that ensued. However, we were all in the same boat (pardon the pun) so despite the annoyance of waiting, I guess it at least kept the rabble in some order and meant guests were checked in with some fairness. My tip would be to either get there much earlier, say noon or before, or alternatively after 3:15pm as much of the crowd had dispersed by then.

Once on board we felt the standard of the ship, its public areas and cabins was very good. Especially their theater was equipped with good quality and comfortable seating. 

Having cruised with NCL before, and first time on P&O its very noticeably 'British' in its guest provisions from style of entertainment and cream tea's in the afternoons and good selection of craft beers.

The weather on this trip was perfect considering time of year and the day trip to Brugges (where we've been a few times before in prior years) was great.

Being a more casual dresser, I wasn't personally a big fan of the black tie night as felt slightly encumbered to comply, because if you don't, some of the main dining areas are restricted, hence limiting yourself to buffet dinning only if your a fella without a penguin suit ;-)

But.... its without doubt very popular and plenty obviously love the opportunity to 'dress to the nines' for the night! Just would be good if there were alternative dining options beside the buffet if you don't want to go the whole dinner dress route.

It was a different experience being seated at collective group tables on this cruise. We'd typically been used to standard couples tables on NCL on most evenings. But, as almost all on board were British, language wasn't any issue, and polite diner conversation between couples wasn't too stale or awkward as I'd previously feared it might of been.

The cream tea in the afternoon was excellent, a real treat, bring a serious appetite though!!

All in all we thoroughly enjoyed our mini cruise. It was a treat and we though good value for money. Would certainly go another mini-cruise again with P&O, perhaps to another location next time.

Ship experiences

Food and Dining

5 out of 5

Onboard Activities

3 out of 5


5 out of 5

Service and Staff

5 out of 5

Ship Quality

5 out of 5

Cabin / Stateroom

5 out of 5
Clean and comfortable

Ship tip

Try to get to terminal early if you can to avoid the long check in wait

Ports of call

Southampton (London), England

2 out of 5


3 out of 5

Traveler Photos

Beautiful Bruges Beguinage Convent; Bruges Beer Wall; Bruges Beautiful Bruges Liquid Lunch; Bruges Beautiful Bruges Centre P&O Ventura Cream Tea Liquid Lunch; Bruges Beautiful Bruges Sunset Zeebrugge P&O Ventura Cream Tea
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