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Born Free

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Born Free last won the day on December 20 2017

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  1. Born Free

    Silversea now provide free UNLIMITED Wi-Fi

    All ships should provide free wifi in this day and age. I think it's a joke that some still charge and ridiculous charges at that!
  2. I think that the overall design of the ship is the same. However, i do believe they will both have a different feel and vibe onboard. All ships seem to have their own personality and you do find that sometimes some of the twins do have noticable differences on-board with the ambience yet to look at they may be identical. For example, Ventura and the Azura - they are sisters but my favourite is the Azura!
  3. Hello, Me again! Just thought i'd give you guys a head up on Reykjavik as i didnt cruise but i know some cruises do dock here! Cost of Living: Iceland is super expensive so be prepared! I've listed a rough average of things we incurred on or travel. A starter in a restaurant is approx £10pp A main can range between £20-£50pp (I would recommend googling the restaurant menus before you go as to not get caught out - avoid seafood restaurants and tapas as you will rack up a hefty bill) A can of soda - £3 A bag of sweets - £3 A pint of beer - £14 but £9 in happy hour Tea/Coffee/Hot Chocolates - £5 Places to eat: We tried a couple of different places to eat. On arrival we visited Sval as it was recommended to me. It's basically a restaurant that only serves home made soup but the soup comes in a bowl made of bread! The soup changes daily but when we went they had Reindeer with Truffle Oil or Broccoli. It was absolutely delicious and I would recommend. However it was the most expensive soup I've ever had coming in at approx £13 each but never the less a truly unique experience! We also tried an Italian called Caruso and this was my favourite place of the trip! The food was gorgeous and so so tasty. I had lasagne but it was incredible. The place itself too was so cute and cosy and the decor was like a little gingerbread house. The lasagne came in at approximately £22 We visited the Laundromat cafe for lunch and as you can imagine it was a cafe that used to be a laundromat. It was very quirky inside and a very upbeat venue. We had pulled duck burgers! A first for me as I've never seen pulled duck burgers anywhere else before! Again this was approx £20. Finally, I would recommend the Babalu cafe for coffee, cake or crepes! They sell the most amazing home made cakes including New York cheesecake but the highlight is the Crepes. We had banana and Nutella and it was amazing! If you fancy something sweet I would recommend this place as it's again so cute and cosy and kind of like somebody's house! A little home from home. Things to see: So you've probably heard of the Blue Lagoon but if you haven't its one of the most magical places I've ever visited. You relax and chill in this amazing thermal pool that's all naturally made whilst it's snowing in the open air around you. The backdrop is the snowy mountains which was just so picturesque. A must visit if you come to Iceland! Most people visit here on the way to the airport or on the arrival as it's so close! If you hire a car and are on an early flight I would recommend visiting here on arrival! Top tip: upgrade to the premium pack at the blue lagoon (yes it's approx another £15pp but you get slippers and robes and you 100% need them). You also get an algae mask which left my skin feel incredible! The blue lagoon is actually open until 11pm at night so you don't have to make it a day time activity. I think everybody has heard of the Northern lights, this is another of the main attractions in Iceland. However, they are sneaky and don't always come out to play! Unfortunately this time around we didn't get the chance to spot them as the weather was so stormy and cloudy the clouds filled the sky all day and night so therefore our tour got cancelled then rescheduled for the next night and then same again for the final night! I would recommend not to plan your entire trip around the northern lights in case you don't actually see them because you would be uber disappointed! To wrap it up I loved Reykjavik with its artsy quirky little streets and shops, amazing food and breathtaking scenery! Make sure you save up as things are expensive and you don't want to be scrimping and stopping yourself from doing things if you feel like they are too expensive! I would definitely return to visit some other places of Iceland and I would even come back in the summer time for the Midnight Sun phenomenon!
  4. Born Free

    Singapore & it's Treasures!

    Wow - i visited the night safari and the light show but completley forgot to write about them! I agree with you DavidH
  5. Born Free

    MSC ?? do I or dont I book

  6. Born Free

    Singapore & it's Treasures!

    Before travelling to Singapore, I was unsure of what to expect upon arrival. I had obviously heard of the Gardens by the Bay and the Marina Bay Sands hotel with the amazing infinity pool on the top but other than that I was super lost. However, my thoughts now have completely changed. The first port of call, the airport is spectacular. I’ve never been to an airport with activities to do inside whilst you wait for your flight expect from shopping/eating? The Butterfly Garden is a must see. I mean a Butterfly Garden inside an airport?! There is also a cinema, Koi pond and gardens it was also the calmest airport I’ve ever visited in my life. Scarily calm and not manic in any way, shape or form. The city itself is spectacular with the sky scraper back drop. It kind of reminded me of Hong Kong but less polluted and much calmer. We stayed at two hotels, the Holiday Inn Express – Clarkes Quay and the Marina Bay Sands. The Holiday Inn Express Clarkes Quay is the perfect budget hotel in a decent area, I mean being a city the hotels aren’t cheap anyway but for a decent standard hotel to use as a base to explore I don’t think we could have picked anything better. This hotel also has a rooftop pool. A highlight of our experience was Clarke Quay on a Saturday night. WHAT A PLACE! The night life was amazing and such an amazing experience as your indoor but outdoor under a huge canopy with music and live bands blurting out from every corner. Great night clubs and eateries are found here. Although word of warning: Singapore is expensive for Alcohol! So budget wisely or save extra! (I’m talking £15 a cocktail/£10 a beer). We visited Raffles for the novelty and customary chucked our peanut shells onto the floor. The Botanical gardens is a lovely day out if you have time to spare but not if you are on a time limit – I would recommend Gardens by the Bay over this! The Gardens by the Bay is an amazing attraction and beautiful to walk around especially at night. The majority of it is actually FREE! You do pay a minimal charge to go onto the Sky Walk and enter the big Domes (Cloud Forest and Flower Dome) however it’s worth it. Top Tip: The Gardens are open until 2am at the weekend so many people take a picnic and bottles of wine and have a midnight picnic on the grass. We went to Sentosa Island but not to the Universal and Theme Parks, I would recommend going here if you have the time or really love theme parks. If you aren’t going for the theme parks then I didn’t see any point in visiting. The city itself is extremely safe and clean and the metro is so easy to navigate. You can walk everywhere but it’s all very far apart so much easier to catch the metro. There are a few art museums too which we did visit and loved the modern art. They have a pixel art wall where you add stickers to create the art work so very interactive! The Marina Bay Sands hotel is gorgeous and luxury at its best. The rooftop infinity pool on the 57th floor is only accessible to hotel guests so save up and book a one night stay. Please bear in mind its approx. £300 a night which we did splurge out on. You literally pay for the amazing views as the hotel doesn’t have many other facilities so my top tip would be to use this day as a pool day and enjoy the gorgeous views. Top Tip: If you are sightseeing stay near Clarke Quay, if you are connecting on a flight or just there for a chill then book the Marina Bay hotel. All in all, I was so surprised with Singapore and would recommend it to anybody, it really is so cosmopolitan and quite westernised but a lovely place to stay in Asia for a cruise connection.
  7. As i was nervous about travelling on the ship i thought i would post something to help others feel at ease!! Firstly, I was pleasantly surprised with the ship. I had heard from others she was starting to get tired and worn. However, my own personal thoughts disagree with this. I loved the feel of the ship and atmosphere on board was lovely. The atrium is gorgeous and a hub for many people throughout the day. I loved how bright and airy the atrium was it had a really pleasant feel about it. The décor was in between modern and traditional so I think suited everyone. The on-board shops were lovely and had a good choice even though not many of them! There was entertainment on throughout the day time and night time and it was organised brilliantly. All the staff onboard were very accommodating and happy. I couldn't fault the service. After speaking to other guests, they advised that they felt the same way. I spent a lot of my time in the Gym whilst on-board after day trips and on the sea days. The cardio machines are fantastic lots to choose from and plenty so they didn’t get clogged up. However, the weight room was quite small and cramped. I'm surprised there wasn't really any leg weight machines or bar bell weights. It would be nice to have somewhere where you can run outdoors like what other ships have as the promenade deck has cabins below so you aren't allowed to run around. We enjoyed the adult only area at the back of the ship near the gym as it was very quiet and had beautiful wake views (also sheltered on the sea days from the wind). The buffet had a good variety of food, however in comparison to my experience a few years back I think that they have reduced the variety as lots must have been going to waste. The outdoor deck space was great I didn’t notice anybody struggling for a deck chair on the sea days. The shuttle board and golf nets were also very popular! We didn't dine in the speciality restaurants but they were always busy in the evenings and I think for the cover charge it was worth it. Café Jardin in the day time was a nice quiet place to go for breakfast or lunch, it was never packed and when I wandered past there was always some kind of amazing cakes on display there. The casino was tired and definitely needed a re-fit. The drinks prices were brilliant in comparison to other cruise lines exactly the same as what I would pay at home. They had a good gin menu too which went down well with my family! The movie theatre showed so many great films and new block busters which I was really surprised with as I expected them to show older films. The tv in the room had a great choice for night time too. I slept on the upper pullman in our room as we had a four berth and I must admit that the bed was super comfy. One thing I would say is that if a client was 6ft or taller the upper pullman is too short for them. The evening meal in the Adriatic restaurant was lovely, I love the fresh breads every night! There was always a great choice. Fancy but not over the top which I think sometimes can be off putting! I liked the fact you always had an option for basics like chicken/steak every night in case there was something you didn’t like on the menu. The excursions were reasonably priced and the guides were so so knowledgeable I loved the Game of Thrones tour in Dubrovnik. The embarkation and disembarkation of guests always ran smoothly and there were never long queues. Also, being able to get into the centre of Venice was brilliant too as the ship was within the size allowed into the Venetian docks! I was slightly disappointed on an Early Saver fare not getting the Freedom dining option but we made do with the 20:30pm - we just arranged our day time eating around the dinner sitting time. As the cruise was coming towards the end of the season there was virtually no families on-board apart from one that I saw. The main clientele was elderly and couples. I think I was the only person there in their twenties apart from my brother and the entertainment crew/team. The broad way shows were exceptional I think the best I’ve seen so far on a cruise. I loved the We Will Rock you show and also the Blue Brothers tribute. They also performed a west end mash up with a variety of different songs including Wicked! The rendition of defying gravity was amazing. They had a comedian on-board too he was hilarious. My overall experience on the Oceana was fantastic. Apart from minor décor issues there was nothing wrong with her. She had an amazing atmosphere on board in comparison to some of the other ships I travelled with. The food onboard was exceptional and the Broadway shows were great. To top it all off we had an amazing itinerary and took part in some fantastic shore excursions. Top Tip: Don't hesitate to book this cruise we had an amazing time and the destinations were fantastic! Don't always listen to others!!
  8. Born Free

    RIP Mr Bond

  9. Looking at some new makeup for my forthcoming cruise, anybody have any recommendations for good coverage foundation - i want to look photo shopped!!!!!
  10. Born Free


    Wow this sounds so good! I'm so excited any recommendations for SIngapore? What cruise line did you do?
  11. Born Free


    Thank you so much smtcan for your feedback! This has put my mind at peace a little bit, i hope we do get Aussies and Americans due to the language barrier! Any top tips for singapore we are doing 5 days!
  12. I have booked to go on a cruise and stay package in December with the Mariner of the Seas from Singapore - I'm slightly concerned that the entire sailing may just be of Asian Nationalities and being two british ladies i'm worried we'll have a bad experience? We've booked MYTime dining however, i do like the set dining but think this may be the best option? Has anybody sailed on anything similar before around the Far East and may have any top tips for us?
  13. Born Free

    London-Perth Direct Flight With Qantas

    I go to singapore in december that is approx 14/15 hours - i intend on knocking back some sleeping tablets
  14. Always use CPS and ABP - so much easier than messing around with the silly shuttle buses
  15. Born Free

    what to do in le havre ?

    My friends went to honfleur from here on their last mini cruise and loved honfleur so much theyve booked to go back but on a weekend fly break just to honfleur!