European cruise on P&O's Ventura

European cruise on P&O's Ventura

I sailed on the P&O Ventura from Southampton last week and visited Santander, Vigo, Lisbon, Porto and Guernsey over a 10 night duration. I travelled with my parents and 14 year old son and shared an accesible cabin as my Dad is wheelchair bound. The cabin was comfortable and had just enough room for the 4 of us as well as the equipment needed to care for Dad. (plenty of room if just 2 sharing) We had the beds split into twins and then 2 pullman beds were brought down of an evening which my son and I slept on. The ship was much larger than the last one we were on so took a while to get used to where things were. There was plenty to do on board such as football, basketball, archery competitions, quoits, shuffleboard, spa (extra charge), gym, pools, jacuzzis, evening shows, disco, dance classes, quizes, bingo, kids clubs up to the age of 17 and much more. There were also the food outlets of 3 main dining rooms, buffet, pizzeria and grill, plus a selection of speciality restaurants (supplements apply). Being that it was in the school holidays, it was full so around 3000 guests on board including over 700 children which was noticable around the pools and at certain times for mealtimes. Saying that, we personally never had to wait very long for a table. You could choose between anytime dining where you could go to one of the 2 a la carte retsuarants (same menu in each) or the buffet or you could book specific dining which was 6.30 or 8.30 which was in a separate restaurant at the back of the ship and much quieter and relaxing. As we had 3 days at sea, we had 3 formal evenings which was compulsory for men to wear shirt/jacket and tie in the main restaurants and speciality options but if you didn‘t want to dress up, then you could head down to the buffet for a more informal dinner. The food was really good and plenty of choice with a few items always on the menu such as chicken and steak along with the specials of the day. The pizzas and were good as well as the burgers and hotdogs from the grill. The buffet had a number of options and also re opened from 1030 until around 2am for those wanting a late night bite. Drinks were not included but you could book a drinks package before you sailed for a discount or add on a wine package of 6 or 12 bottle of wine which is what we did and had the wine in the evenings with dinner. Prices for drinks ranged from around £5 for a bottle of cider/beer to £7.95 for a cocktail. Bottles of wine started from around £18. All the ports were great and you could either book on the excursions arranged by P&O or head out by yourself to explore.  For more information on this ship or cruising in general, please feel free to contact me.

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Susan Dearing

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