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Posts posted by LandC

  1. Thanks Solent Richard. This is certainly a very helpful review.  We spent a week on SoD in September and thoroughly enjoyed it.  We had a standard cabin but found the storage space rather limited, especially in the wardrobe where the life jackets etc took up the space normally used  for shoes.  We ended up having to put our shoes under the bed!  We are considering booking a higher grade cabin next time to get the extra space.  How did you rate the mid-ship suite?  The bedroom area looks rather small, but this may be due to the angle of the photo.  Did you have the opportunity to view a deluxe cabin whilst on board, and if so, how did it compare?

  2. I agree Glenndale.  We  pre-registered for cruises from April 2021 when we were on board SoD in September.  I phoned recently to enquire when these cruises would be available to book, and was told that it would be in the New Year.  Does that mean January 2020, I wonder?  

  3. Following your blog Cinnamon!

    We were on the same cruise as you, and it was our first Saga cruise. We are in our late 60s.  We loved the ship, the crew were fantastic and the food excellent.  We managed to eat at all three speciality restaurants during the week.  We enjoyed most of the entertainment, which included a classical quartet.  I also joined in the Joanna Hall WalkActive sessions which were very useful for improving my posture and walking technique!  


    However we would have liked to hear some interesting lectures, as we thought those delivered by the ex SAS chap were poor.


    We also book fly cruises, as we don’t want to be away from home for more than 2 weeks at a time, and flying means we can venture further afield with fewer sea days.  Perhaps Saga will consider offering fly cruises when Spirit of Adventure is launched?  Maybe one ship could be located in Piraeus from April - October, then reposition to Barbados for the winter?

    This  would also attract a younger demographic.



  4. Hello hermioneb.  I’m so pleased that you find the ship to your liking.  Are you happy with your cabin? Is the balcony spacious?

    We are boarding on 5 September, and we have booked a standard cabin.  Any information on the cabins, or any tips would be so helpful.  Enjoy the rest of your cruise!





  5. We are on the 5th September sailing, and received our excursions brochure last week (we booked direct). Can’t wait to get on board Spirit of Discovery! 


    Can anyone advise when the brochure for cruises sailing in 2021 is likely to be published?

  6. I agree roger747, there is no other cruise line similar to VTA for the UK market at the moment.  G Adventures bought the Swan Hellenic brand name but have done nothing with it so far.


    I received the following letter this morning from Jos Dewing, Managing Director, dated 29 April 2019: 

    "It is with deep regret and sincere apologies that we write to inform you that we must cancel your upcoming cruise aboard Aegean Odyssey.


    Aegean Odyssey recently developed a fault with her starboard engine and, following a detailed inspection by maritime authorities in Athens, it has been confirmed that the ship will be out of operation for some time.


    Following her recent cruise, AO will undergo the necessary repairs.  Sadly, we anticipate that this will affect a number of cruises, including the cruise you are booked to travel on.


    Having considered all the alternative options, we are unfortunately unable to offer you any alternative travel arrangements with VtoA, at this time, and so will process a refund of all monies paid for your cruise to date.  You should receive said refund within the next 21 days along with a cancellation invoice.  If you have booked with a travel partner, the refund will be sent to them to process and they will forward it on to you as is standard practice with partner bookings.


    We appreciate that this will be very disappointing, but sadly it is an issue beyond our control.


    If you have any further expenses relating specifically to this booking, please discuss your options with your travel insurance provider."


  7. Hello Marysb, I hope you enjoyed your stay at the Grand Bretagne.  

    We’ve just had a call from Voyages to Antiquity’s UK office.  Our Black Sea cruise, due to depart from Piraeus on 4 May, has been cancelled.  Engine problems on the ship mean it is too risky to make the long voyage up to Ukraine. They don’t know how long it will take to fix.  They will issue a full refund.  We are so disappointed 😩.  I spent the whole weekend packing!! Currently searching the internet for alternatives.  Good luck to anyone who is booked on future cruises. Please post here if you have any more news. 

  8. We also got the preview brochure yesterday. I was disappointed. I'd hoped that Saga would base a ship in the Med for part of the summer or in the Caribbean for part of the winter, and there would be some fly-cruises. We like to minimise sea days, and also don't want to be away for more than 14 nights, and preferably less. It rules out a lot of cruises, and leaves many with similar itineraries. I will wait to see what the prices are like, and then compare them against Fred Olsen, Marella or CMV, taking into account the cost of getting to the departure port. So, let's wait and see!


    Hello Wacktle. We have identified a possible cruise we may book on Spirit of Adventure. It will be interesting to see how the prices, when published, compare with other cruise lines. Just waiting for Saga to call us now!

  9. We received a preview brochure through the post today for 2020 cruises on Spirit of Discovery and Spirit of Adventure. Not available to book yet, but Saga will contact those who have pre-registered first, before the cruises go on general sale. We hoped there might be some fly cruises included, but all cruises depart from Dover or Southampton.

  10. We have booked a cruise on Saga’s new ship Spirit of Discovery, due to launch summer 2019.

    We have also pre-registered for cruises on Saga’s second new ship Spirit of Adventure, due to launch in 2020.

    We are wondering when the cruises will go on sale. :rolleyes:

  11. Hi Linda, hope this message is not duplicated. Was having trouble

    this a.m. with website. We are getting excited as it is about 2 weeks

    until the trip begins. I will give comments when we return. I hope you

    enjoy your trip also. What’s not to like, beautiful country, beautiful weather

    and interesting people to meet.



    Thanks Diane, much appreciated. Have a wonderful holiday! Linda.

  12. Hi MarySB, we will also be on AO April 30 thru May 8 “Aegean Experience 1 Greece and the Islands. Any chance that’s your trip also?

    Bozo5404 aka Diane


    Hello Diane. We have booked Aegean Experience 1 departing October 1st. I have started a Roll Call but so far no replies, although there were only 3 cabins available when we booked, so it is obviously a very popular itinerary! I hope you have a great time on the cruise, and would be interested to hear about it on your return. Linda.

  13. Thanks for the update tring. I wonder if the Swan Hellenic cruises, if relaunched, will include Arts Society accredited lecturers as before? We had four

    lecturers on our last cruise on the Minerva, and they were all interesting and informative. We took our first cruise with Voyages to Antiquity this year. Their ship, the Aegean Odyssey, is a similar size to the Minerva. There were only 2 lecturers on board but both were good. The ship is not without its problems - we think the soundproofing between cabins needs to be improved - but we enjoyed the cruise and will book again.

  14. Our flight times are

    18 January Depart LGW 09.40 Arrive Barbados 14.45


    1 February Depart Barbados 19.20 Arrive 2 February LGW 07.40.


    I understand that we will be able to stay on the ship until we depart for the airport in the afternoon. When we were on a South American cruise with Fred a couple of years ago we were offered a shore excursion in Lima on the morning of departure. I hope this will also be the case in Barbados, but others may be able to advise.

  15. Hi - agree re cost of FO's tours. eg we have booked an up to 5. hours highlights plus beach tour on Grenada with Stan at JNJ tours - ex US military with excellent reviews on cruise critic. Is 50USD (ie£37) compared with FO's £75 but no beach. Stan will reply very quickly to any emails. Be good to fill his tour vehicle for the Braemar.:)


    Thanks for the advice RKGHM. We are on the 18 January cruise, but JNJ tours looks interesting - have you used Stan before?

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