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   Cruise Travel - Reader Reviews

Welcome to Your Favorites, where you have the opportunity to share your travel experiences with fellow Internet Travelers around the world.

Festival Cruises

MS Mistral

Your Rating:four Stars
Reviewed by: Susan Skinner
# previous cruises: 5
Date of Trip: February 20, 2001
Itinerary: Caribbean

This was an excellent cruise/itinerary and great value for money. The ports were excellent and it was great having a different port of call every day although tiring. The animators who provided the entertainment went out of their way to make this a most enjoyable experience.

Public Areas
Excellent public areas, beautifully decorated. Large pool and sunbathing area with no problems getting a sun lounger although there was still passengers "booking" sunbeds at prime locations with their towels then going ashore for the day which was very annoying.

Food and Service
The food was very nice although 9 oclock 2nd sitting was rather late. A buffet was always available for lunch and there was a great selection to choose from, you could choose to eat this indoors or on the deck. We have noticed other cruise ships doing "freestyle cruising" which really appeals as no buffet available in the evening meant no choice but to eat in the restaurant. Breakfast in you cabin was also available free of charge which was great when an early start was required.

Cabins were very comfortable, all cabins were situated on the higher decks so noise was kept to a minimum. The cabin steward was excellent and must cleaned our room immediately we left it in the morning and topped up our ice bucket twice a day. The bathroom was spacious with plenty of hot water.

Although not one for cabaret type shows we did enjoy the bands which played in the lounges and there was also a quiet piano bar with nice background piano music. Also the entertainment staff were excellent at ensuring everyone felt welcome and the Mr&Mrs type competition saw us going back to our cabin with lovely bottle of champagne. Their variety type show was also very entertaining and audience participation was good fun.

There was a beautiful health club offering everything a top class gym would offer and every day I promised to burn off some calories but unfortunately never got around to it. Into our fourth day unfortunately our ship run aground during the night and we were stuck for 2 days and missed Antigua and St Barts. As we could not go ashore we were supplied with free drinks for the rest of that week and extra entertainment was laid on although we just took advantage of lazing in the sun. The French and Italians got very upset and were demanding a full refund for the cruise. On return we were offered a #500 voucher off a cruise on Festivals new ship European Vision which we thought very fair and look forward to using it in 2002.

Who Goes
As I say a lot of French and Italians on board who were not very friendly but the British contingent made up for them. There were quite a lot of children on this cruise but once again they were mostly French. The Brits were mostly in their 40's - 60's and although we have not kept in touch with anyone since returning have great memories.

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Description: Experience the beautiful ports of Nassau and Royal Caribbean's private island - CocoCay on a 3-night Weekend Getaway to the Bahamas. Absorb everything island life has to offer as you snorkel with the stingrays, parasail above the serene blue waters and walk the endless white sand beaches. From Miami.
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Description: Enjoy a wonderful 3 Day cruise to the fun-loving playground of Nassau, Bahamas. Discover Nassau, the capital city as well as the cultural, commercial and financial heart of the Bahamas. Meet the Atlantic Southern Stingrays, the guardians of Blackbeard's treasure.
NCL - Bermuda - 7 Day from $499 per person
Description: What a charming little chain of islands. Walk on pink sand beaches. Swim and snorkel in turquoise seas. Take in the historical sights. They're stoically British and very quaint. Or explore the coral reefs. You can get to them by boat or propelled by fins. You pick. Freestyle Cruising doesn't tell you where to go or what to do. Sure, you can plan ahead, or decide once onboard. After all, it's your vacation. There are no deadlines or must do's.
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Description: White sand, black sand, talcum soft or shell strewn, the beaches of the Eastern Caribbean invite you to swim, snorkel or simply relax. For shoppers, there's duty-free St. Thomas, the Straw Market in Nassau, French perfume and Dutch chocolates on St. Maarten. For history buffs, the fascinating fusion of Caribbean, Latin and European cultures. For everyone, a day spent on HAL's award winning private island Half Moon Cay.
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Description: For centuries people have traveled to Europe to see magnificent ruins, art treasures and natural wonders. And the best way to do so is by cruise ship. Think of it - you pack and unpack only once. No wasted time searching for hotels and negotiating train stations. Instead, you arrive at romantic ports of call relaxed, refreshed and ready to take on the world.
Holland America - Alaska from From $499 per person
Description: Sail between Vancouver and Seward, departing Sundays on the ms Statendam or ms Volendam and enjoy towering mountains, actively calving glaciers and pristine wildlife habitat. Glacier Bay and College Fjord offer two completely different glacier-viewing experiences.