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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    147

    Our Canary Island cruise on Oriana

    Well, we're back from our cruise on Oriana, having had a fantastic time!

    Our cabin was great, more roomy than I thought it would be and everything we needed for a comfortable trip. I'd been worried about noise from the gym above before I travelled and although I did hear pounding from the treadmills at times, it didn't bother me too much -the treadmills had nothing on the lady next door though who sounded to be having a very 'nice' time if you get my drift!

    The ship itself was gorgeous, everything I hoped it would be. I'd read reviews calling her tired and in need of TLC etc but I found it to be clean and really well presented -maybe this is the beauty of having nothing to compare it to?! We loved the terrace pool area and spent a lot of time out there with the other families.

    There were only 17 children on board but by the end we'd got to know all the others and they were such a lovely bunch! J went to kids club some of the time depending on what was going on, the staff there were fantastic with them. Halfway through the cruise J wrote to the captain and then got to go and visit the bridge to see all their 'gadgets' -he was one very happy little boy!!

    The food was amazing!! I ate a disgraceful amount! We dined in the MDR every night except one, our dining companions were really lovely which made it good fun each night.

    We met the lovely Pippa and her husband and had several nice chats with them around the ship, and made lots of new friends during the cruise, J seemed to acquire a fan club of elderly ladies by the end of the cruise (not including Pippa in that comment by the way!)

    The port visits were great too. First stop was Madeira where we did the cable car and wicker basket ride which was brilliant, great views from the cable car. In Tenerife we went to Siam water park which was excellent -great for kids of all ages. In Lanzarote we did the camel ride and fire mountain which we both really enjoyed -despite having a trainee camel behaving badly behind ours! In Gran Canaria we went to one of the beaches and had a lovely time until I encountered the local jelly fish -very pretty things but boy did it hurt!! The only saving grace was a very tasty lifeguard treated me! Finally, it rained in Vigo so we didn't do much until we spotted people hiring out Segways near the port so we had a try of those (brilliant fun and not as easy as my 7 year old made it look!)

    The sailaway from Vigo was great with a really patriotic atmosphere, amazing that so many people stand in the port area to wave the ship off!

    So all in all a really great trip, the weather was good apart from in Vigo. Only problem is I want to cruise again...!! I have lots of photos so at some point I'll put up some links to them.

    PS for any of you that entered into the 'friendly' debate about my son being off school for the trip, here's a quick summary of his time on board.
    He...
    • Read 3 books (Harry Potter)
    • Wrote postcards home, letter to the captain and is working on his cruise diary/scrapbook at the moment
    • Worked on maths every day with pricing in the shops (they had % sales most days on certain items) and by multiplying the numbers on the lifeboats (don't ask!)
    • Learnt about ships navigation and radar on the bridge, and bought a compass to use on the ship
    • Tried out his Spanish in most of the ports and was complimented on his accent
    • Learnt a few nautical terms
    • Learnt about the creation of the Canary Islands and the volcanic history on Lanzarote
    • Saw firsthand the heat and power of the volcano
    • Learnt about different types of lava and the way it's used to sustain crop growth in Lanzarote
    • Tried lots of new foods including snails vol-au-vents and pheasant
    • Learnt about etiquette in a formal setting
    • Made friends with people ranging from 18 months to 80+
    • Got to sing, dance and dress up
    • Did all kinds of artwork in kids club
    • Geography...followed the ship 'live' on the map on channel 1 on TV
    • IT...used the Cyb@study most days to message his nan
    • Helped entertain the younger children
    • Used his problem solving skills to help find our way around the baffling layout of the ship (have to go up and across to go down etc!)
    • Swam every day except one (even swam in 11 degree temps as we left Southampton!)
    • and most importantly he learnt how you stuff 70kg+ of luggage into 3 smallish wardrobes!
    So for those who feared for his education I don't think there's drastic cause for concern. In fact I'd even go as far as to say just maybe he benefitted from this trip!

    Last edited by CruiseBlues, Birmingham; 1st April 2011 at 07:56 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    8,193
    Hi Cruiseblues, can't believe your cruise is over already. We go off to the canaries on the 11th. Glad to see you and your son had a lovely time. Look forward to seeing the photos.
    Trish


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    5,750
    Images
    1
    Hi Cruiseblues so glad you had a great time but we did warn you one cruise and you would be hooked.

    so glad your son had an educational cruise but did he have time for any FUN

    don't want to work, just want to cruise.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    147
    Quote QUOTE: View Post
    Hi Cruiseblues so glad you had a great time but we did warn you one cruise and you would be hooked.

    so glad your son had an educational cruise but did he have time for any FUN
    FUN? That's not allowed surely? Not in school time? ;-)

    He had tons of fun! In fact he's down in the dunps now that we're back home...I know how he feels!


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    147
    Quote QUOTE: View Post
    Hi Cruiseblues, can't believe your cruise is over already. We go off to the canaries on the 11th. Glad to see you and your son had a lovely time. Look forward to seeing the photos.
    Trish
    Yours had come around so quickly too. I hope you have a really great time -I'm sure you will! x


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    2,171
    Images
    27
    Hiyya there, S&J!
    It was really lovely to meet you both and I hope that the cruise has whetted your appetite for many more in years to come.

    She was a lovely ship, wasn't she! I've been brought down to earth a tad by piles of laundry and returning to work but I'm still in a half daydream thinking about the fabulous cruise we've just had, the smashing folk we've met and the amazing experiences we've enjoyed. For me, seeing schools of whales for the 1st time was absolutely brilliant and something which I shall always treasure.

    Last edited by Pippa, Kernow; 2nd April 2011 at 10:52 AM.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    28
    Good to hear that you had a great time; we cruised on Oriana last summer and absolutely loved it. Our 6 year old son had a brilliant time and got very upset when we had to leave! I agree too with your point about the on-board experience/education - our son only missed 1 day of school when we went but he experienced so many new things and learnt so much, we were actually thinking about booking a mini-cruise for next summer which would have meant 4 days off school - until I found out today how much the prices have already gone up and it's not even on general sale yet


  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    5,608
    I have cruised since I was a very young child and have taken my own children now into their late teens and older on cruises since they were babies - school holidays or not. I'm so pleased you had a fabulous time. You sound like a lovely mum who has a lovely son.


  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    17,394
    Images
    204
    Glad you enjoyed your cruise - we were on Oriana lasy year and thought she was a fine ship, enjoyed her very much
    and look foreward to being on her again sometime in the future..

    Regards............David


    Cruisings Cool

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Posts
    328
    Quote QUOTE: View Post

    PS for any of you that entered into the 'friendly' debate about my son being off school for the trip, here's a quick summary of his time on board.
    He...
    • Read 3 books (Harry Potter)
    • Wrote postcards home, letter to the captain and is working on his cruise diary/scrapbook at the moment
    • Worked on maths every day with pricing in the shops (they had % sales most days on certain items) and by multiplying the numbers on the lifeboats (don't ask!)
    • Learnt about ships navigation and radar on the bridge, and bought a compass to use on the ship
    • Tried out his Spanish in most of the ports and was complimented on his accent
    • Learnt a few nautical terms
    • Learnt about the creation of the Canary Islands and the volcanic history on Lanzarote
    • Saw firsthand the heat and power of the volcano
    • Learnt about different types of lava and the way it's used to sustain crop growth in Lanzarote
    • Tried lots of new foods including snails vol-au-vents and pheasant
    • Learnt about etiquette in a formal setting
    • Made friends with people ranging from 18 months to 80+
    • Got to sing, dance and dress up
    • Did all kinds of artwork in kids club
    • Geography...followed the ship 'live' on the map on channel 1 on TV
    • IT...used the Cyb@study most days to message his nan
    • Helped entertain the younger children
    • Used his problem solving skills to help find our way around the baffling layout of the ship (have to go up and across to go down etc!)
    • Swam every day except one (even swam in 11 degree temps as we left Southampton!)
    • and most importantly he learnt how you stuff 70kg+ of luggage into 3 smallish wardrobes!
    So for those who feared for his education I don't think there's drastic cause for concern. In fact I'd even go as far as to say just maybe he benefitted from this trip!
    Great news. You won't mind if your son's teacher takes a week off for a cruise though right? After all, they are educational and it can probably count as some kind of teacher training.


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