|Subject: Oceania Cruises|
Hello Cynthia and Ziners everywhere:
On Monday, I disembarked from the Nautica's cruise from Istanbul to Athens. I am happy to report to you that Oceania has their act together and we enjoyed the cruise very much. The service and the excellent crew were over the top. This was our first cruise, so I don't have anything to gauge my experience, but most of our fellow passengers who were seasoned cruisers said that we had made a strategic mistake by taking the Nautica on our first cruise, as we would never be happy with anything else! Truly, the food is excellent and we found their casual restaurant, Tapas on the Terrace, scrumptious. This is the place to go when you maybe want something a little lighter and quicker. We usually had sushi there, accompanied by a beautiful sunset.
The cruise activities were great fun, things like trivia contests and "Name that Tune" in the Martini bar. The after-dinner entertainment is fine, but certainly not glitzy...this was not a problem for us as we were generally tired after a day of touring. I did enjoy their string quartet that played each evening before dinner.
Yes, the drinks are expensive and the shore excursions also seem to be priced a bit high. We only went on the ship- sponsored excursion to the ancient site of Olympia. Otherwise, we were on our own or hired a private guide ahead of time(in Ephesus), and this worked out fine for us. Despite these minor drawbacks, we think that the Nautica is an excellent way to go and I am sure that you will be pleased with your decision. Please let me know if you have any further questions about the cruise.
Kind Regards, Chris Steamboat Springs, Colorado