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Marella Explorer 2

245 reviews
 All photos (181)181
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Traveller (155)
Common Areas (32)
Balcony Cabins (11)
Itineraries for this ship
Itinerary

Overview

About
Passengers: 1,814   |   Crew: 780
Passengers to crew: 2.33:1
Passengers to space: 0.03:1
Launched: 1995   |   Refurbished: 2019

Cabins

Balcony
Cabin size: 172 - 172 sq. ft.
Connected rooms: 0
Accessible rooms: 0
Maximum passengers: 2
Number of cabins: 0
Traveller rating
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  • 49
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graham walkingshaw wrote a review 26 May
Bonnyrigg, United Kingdom2 contributions
Told to take card, no ATMs working and no atm on ship, arrived, Covid on ship. Staff all around disappearing with covid. Virtually no entertainment during the day. Ship only docked in Industrial Ports and put you offshore into slums. Basically we paid £5000 for a holiday around a pool. 2 pool games in 2 weeks. Other choice was Bingo or a quiz. That was for a fortnight. This felt like a prison, not a cruise ship. We have contacted TUI to ask for a refund.. 2 months later, still no reply. DO NOT BOOK WITH TUI ON A CRUISE. Terrible service. People who have been before said to us that it was nothing like it was when they last went.
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Sharon G wrote a review 20 May
4 contributions5 helpful votes
After a really terrible airport experience at Birmingham Airport 2 check in desks open 2 hrs queue for luggage another 1hr and 15 at security .Normally there would be a check in Marrela desk where they give your your cabin details and luggage labels not now.so asked at desk how they would know what cabin to take my luggage she didn't know .asked a few other Tui people on the plane nobody new. Eventually got to the ship. More queuing to show exactly the same as we did before we flew and more form filling .Absolutely exhausted by this time. Now this was my 3rd Marella cruise Absolutely loved the first two There were so many cutbacks this time it was a joke! Food I can only describe it as poshed up school dinners nothing like pre Covid Drinks we always pay for the premium pre covid had some delicious cocktails pre covidThis time all cocktails premixed and hardly any choice Another cut back. You couldn't actually go to the bar service was hit and miss definitely a language barrier with some staff although very pleasant Entertainment Now we were in the Caribbean. So like previous cruises we expected great Reggae bands No! We had a correan band sing beatles and Abba Absolutely dreadful Previous cruises we would see our cabin staff at least once a day checking everything was OK We saw ours once the whole week when we arrived at our cabin.we had only 2 hand towels In summary Tui have cut back on everything using the same old covid .If this how it's going to be I will be booking my next cruise with another company I was so disappointed
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Anita A wrote a review 7 May
1 contribution2 helpful votes
The beauty of a Marella cruise is the people, the staff are amazing, they work so hard and are so kind and friendly and for the most part the other passengers are lovely down to earth people, no pomp and ceremony no one looking down their nose at you if you don't want to wear a ball gown, but equally it's fine if you do. The entertainment staff work so hard also, trying to make sure everyone has a fabulous time. In very trying times still with so many restrictions in place, we had an amazing time, the cabin and the rest of the ship, spotlessly clean all the time, the food was lovely in all the restaurants (especially Surt and Turf, I have never eaten such an amazing steak) the range of drinks is more than adequate. I loved every minute and every port. There is a special place in my heart for this ship and I cannot wait to sail again. Would recommend to anyone who wants a chilled laid back fun holiday
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Dawny67 wrote a review Apr 2022
22 contributions1 helpful vote
+1
My sister and I went in this 7 day cruise with a 7 night stay in Jamaica at the end of it. Cruise: Disappointed to have Grand Cayman cancelled and an extra night in Jamaica added instead. I agree with another review that the day should have been added to Mexico - which was incredible. Jamaica: we used the extra day to go on the Dunn's River Waterfall excursion, which was a climb up 200 rock steps through the waterfall - absolutely incredible - 100% recommend this trip. See pictures. Havana: it is an old city with a lot of crumbling buildings, but it is full of history. We did the old town tour in the morning and we did get pestered by locals, but our tour guide was very good with them and told us that they are just so pleased to have tourists back. We did the classic car tour at night, which was incredible and took us to Revolution Square. The cars just about kept going and our driver was a sweetheart. We also walked along to the craft market the next day, not a lot here but some good tourist bits. Cozumel: lovely port with some incredibly cheap tourists shops. We went on a Mayan Ruins excursion which was lovely, again guide kept emphasizing how important tourism was to them. I would agree that the most popular currency in all ports, including Jamaica, was USA dollar. Bring lots of $1 for tipping. Ship: Beautiful ship all round. Masks to be worn inside and when walking around inside, but can be taken off for eating and drinking (staff wore them all the time). Clean and tidy throughout. My sister and I had no trouble getting a sunbed around the 2 pools, the issue was more they were all in the sun. But there was no problem finding an alternative sunbed somewhere and shade somewhere. We also had no issue in getting a soft drink or an alcoholic one either 😉. The staff were attentive and often came around the pool asking - they asked you not to queue at the bar. We were in the premium package, so we're able to get cans of pop, this would be extra on the basic package. There were pop and juice machines in the buffet restaurant that you could use - although I did notice during the cruise that they shut off the pop machine. Entertainment: excellent all the time - day quizzes, night quizzes, my first silent disco (amazing), shows, disco etc - something for everyone - I even win the Bingo 😉 Cabin: really nice, lots of cupboard space, hanging space, and storage space. A safe to store valuables. We had a little balcony which was lovely to watch the ship arriving at ports. Staff: really lovely, friendly, helpful and the entertainment staff were excellent. Food: outstanding restaurants all round Summary: Take US Dollar, don't worry about sunbeds, pay for premium drinks (well worth it), would definitely travel with TUI again and this boat is ADULTS only 🥳
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TrevorOxford wrote a review Apr 2022
Oxford, United Kingdom28 contributions15 helpful votes
A nine hour flight from Birmingham took us to Montego Bay. Because our visit to the Cayman Islands had been cancelled, we were told about a week before the cruise but it had in fact never been part of the itinerary as the Caymans had not been accepting cruise ships for nearly 2 years, obviously TUI were just hoping that one day they would change their mind, it would have been better to arrange another island as I am sure they could all do with the tourist dollar, after all they had 2 years to arrange it. Any way we ended up just staying in Montego Bay harbour for an extra day. A day at sea followed but could not get a sun bed or chair anywhere near the two very small pools, managed to get a bed each on the next deck up only to find that unless you wanted alcohol at 10am it was impossible to get a soft drink and this was at every mobile drinks station, we had to que for 20 - 30 mins at one of the bars. Arrived in Havana ( a dirty dog fouled, provity ridden, disgusting place) did not stay more than 2 hours. Returned that nigh to go to the Club Tropicana, this is a must if you visit, it was excellent but caused its own challenges such as money they did not take card so needed some cash, exchange services on the boat were useless, they also do not take card you had to change cash for cash, so we had to find a bank or ATM, could only get Cuban Dollars, this is a dead currency, in other words spend it or throw it away, no shops will accept Cuban Dollars only US Dollars and did not need cash at Club Tropicana as every thing was included free, more incorrect information from destination services. Day 2 in Cuba we took the classic car tour, see some very nice areas when the car was working, well they are all over 70 years old, did not have time to visit the Cuban cigar factory or rum distillery as the car had its bonnet up most of the time. On to Cozomo Island, Mexico, now we were in port for 11 hours our excursion was 10 hours it was all going to be a bit of a rush, would this not have been the perfect time to use up the extra day we had rather than sitting in Montego Bay harbour, there was so must you could do here both on the island and on main land Mexico, 2 days here would have been great. The food was generally good, a good selection and the staff (non european) were excellent, always spoke very polite, could not do enough for you. In conclusion, take US Dollar cash with you, all islands take it, put your towel out before breakfast, they will not be removed, order a itemised bill as I still am trying to identify around £325. Would we go with TUI on a cruise again, yes, it can only get better. Week 2 was a 5* on the beach in Montego Bay but thats a separate review.
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