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Ian F wrote a review Nov 2022
42 contributions6 helpful votes
As to date, I have not received a survey form from TUI, so here goes. On the whole the cruise was enjoyable but I can understand the viewpoints of other reviewers.
The crew, staff and entertainers were brilliant and hard working. Cleanliness on board was to a high standard but sometimes this was undermined by people not washing their hands after visiting the toilet!
My inside cabin was clean but on the small side and there was not much clearance on one side of the bed. The shower was small with a curtain which moved due to the air conditioning but there was plenty of hot water. It was OK as not much time was spent in here.
As I am not a sun worshipper I did not get involved with the sunbed fiasco. I did find it amusing seeing people leave their cabins early in the morning with their blue towels in order to grab a sunbed at the first opportunity.
For convenience, I only dined at The Islands restaurant. The majority of the food was of a high standard with a varied menu. However, on two occasions the lettuce leaves were "brown" and burgers seemed under-cooked.
Generally the bar service was good but some queues formed especially when people requested complicated cocktails or coffee. Is a ticketing system required to avoid queue jumpers? The opening time of the Squid & Anchor should be earlier to serve the bingo ticket queue customers.
I enjoyed most of the shows but there were some weak speciality acts.
I was concerned that the 6 day Atlantic crossing would be boring but there was always something going on to keep me occupied whether it was a talk, quiz etc.
I went on 4 official TUI shore excursions which were very enjoyable. The guides were very knowledgeable. The only port of call I found disappointing was Grand Turk. It was OK if you wanted to sunbathe or have a drink. The prices at the so called duty free shops were very expensive.
The cost for connection to the onboard WIFI/internet was very expensive. No doubt this is why people made a beeline for the nearest internet cafe at every port of call.
The flight experience from Manchester to Palma and transfer to ship was good. The return from Montego Bay seemed a little chaotic. The documentation procedures seemed long winded but I experienced no significant queues. The airport was busy with three TUI flight queues crammed in to a small area. My flight was 2 hours late due to the late arrival of the incoming flight due to baggage handling problems and the same on the outgoing flight. The flight and food were satisfactory but the breakfast was very rushed. Should start earlier? I had to use my own ear pieces for the entertainment as none were on board.
I like the concept of an all inclusive cruise, however I feel like I am subsidising others who seem to spend all day drinking. Also, for hygiene purposes, I would like to see a dress code enforced in the restaurant areas.
Would I cruise with TUI again? Yes as they provide good value for money. They must not standards slip for the sake of upsetting a few passengers.
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Sail Date: October 2022
Cabin Type: Inside
Type of Trip:
Destination: Caribbean
Pools & Sundecks
Onboard Activities
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
1 Helpful vote
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Marella Discovery 2

305 reviews
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Traveller (497)
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Itineraries for this ship


Passengers: 1,836   |   Crew: 771
Passengers to crew: 2.38:1
Launched: 1996   


Cabin size: 139 - 172 sq. ft.
Connected rooms: 54
Accessible rooms: 0
Maximum passengers: 4
Number of cabins: 268
Traveller rating
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John G wrote a review Yesterday
Durham18 contributions33 helpful votes
My wife and I were first time cruisers so have no benchmark to compare the Marella Cruise 'Flavours of the Caribbean'. We enjoyed the experience but are unlikely to take another cruise. Mainly for the following reasons: a) Although the ship was large, facilities and entertainment excellent and all staff helpful, friendly and efficient, we still felt a little confined, looking at the Caribbean but unable to swim or enjoy the palm fringed beaches which we would have available in an hotel. b) We understand that there are circumstances where the itinerary may have to be changed, but we were told many weeks prior to the sailing date that the trip to Grand Cayman would not take place as the port was too busy on that day and that a visit to Ocho Rios would be included in its place. c) However, the visit to Ocho Rios turned out to be only a few hours on the morning of the first day, leaving no time to take any excursions, e.g. Dunns River Falls. Presumably this was due to the delayed arrival of our flight from UK. d) In addition, on boarding we were told that the visit to Mexico would not occur due to a problem with the ship being unable to manoeuvre in a small harbour. We were advised that this would now be replaced by a visit to Grand Cayman! We appreciate that this was arranged for a different day to the original date for the Grand Cayman visit. e) Because of high winds, the ship had to stay in Havana Port overnight instead of leaving in the afternoon, consequently arriving at Grand Cayman much later and thus shortening the visit. This meant that instead of the 3 excursions originally included in the itinerary, there was only one (the Havana visit) that was as advertised - and of the remaining two, Cozumel was totally cancelled and substituted by a few hours in Ocho Rios and Grand Cayman was cut short. Obviously not the cruise we had anticipated enjoying. To date, we have not been offered any discount for the loss of the Cozumel visit and its unsatisfactory replacement or for the shortened visit to Grand Cayman.
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Denise R wrote a review 27 Jan
Dukinfield, United Kingdom15 contributions4 helpful votes
The boarding experience was long after a delay on the flight but once aboard that was well organised. We had a deluxe cabin which I’m glad about due to the size of the others and there was plenty of storage space. I met FALTON, our cabin worker on the 1st night and he was fantastic from the beginning . He remembered our names, he was there whenever we needed him, he put birthday banners and balloons in the room for my husband after seeing a card. He was extremely polite, friendly, attentive and good st his work the whole week. I was slightly disappointed with some of the food as I did expect 5 star but on some occasions it was just ok. The surf and turf restaurant was amazing though ( you have to pay 3xtra for that). I paid for extra drinks package but not sure it was worth it for us. It was also frustrating that no 2 drinks were the same, 1 night the cocktail was nice, the next it was awful! There was plenty to do throughout the days at sea, so much so that it was very loud with quizzes, shows, music bands etc that it was hard to read a book if you also wanted sunshine. I think we prefer land holidays but will probably do another cruise depending on where it’s going as some of the places we went to weren’t great. Friends we were with went on Marella 3 years ago and commented that the service and food wasn’t as good as it was when they travelled last time.
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Helen P wrote a review 26 Jan
Swindon10 contributions7 helpful votes
We had planned and booked our cruise eleven months ago . The night before our departure while at the airport we were informed our cruise destination had completely changed. No option but to accept £200 pp compensation but devastated.The entertainment team did their best but every thing about the cruise was ruined. Not what we had booked at all. Will NOT be cruising with TUI again.
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Stephen M wrote a review 26 Jan
Amman2 contributions11 helpful votes
We booked a TUI for the selection of destinations and not as a traditional Caribbean cruise. However, the ship has a technical problem, making it not so manoeuvrable during windy conditions, which has been apparently broken since last year. We were only informed that our original planned itinerary was changed whilst onboard and only offered a £200 pp goodwill gesture on a holiday that cost nearly £6000. However, looking at past reviews, this was the same experience for other travellers. Therefore why are passengers not informed in advance as I would have cancelled this cruise? I cannot express our disappointment on this overrated TUI cruise, especially when we specifically booked expecting to visit Mexico, Honduras, Guatemala and Belize and not to spend most of the time in Cuba and Jamaica. I advise anyone looking for a cruise to select a more reliable and honest cruise line. This has put me off selecting TUI for any holiday destination in the future.
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
1 Helpful vote
Kevin W wrote a review 20 Jan
Cambridge, United Kingdom96 contributions60 helpful votes
Basically I agree with previous reviews. We travelled on Discovery 2 on Dec 27th for 2 weeks picking the ship up at Montego Bay. First week FLAVOURS OF THE CARIBBEAN GEORGE TOWN GRAND CAYMAN- Tendered into a dock that had a few shops, area wasn't very impressive. DAY AT SEA- getting a sun bed was impossible. HAVANA- for 2 days Docked right near the main attractions of town. Be warned, lots of people wanting money if you take a photograph. Next day should have gone to MEXICO but this was cancelled, (something to do with the ship) so all passengers received £100 each on board spend. Instead we had another DAY AT SEA, and again not able to get a sunbed. MONTEGO BAY for turn around. PRIDE OF PANAMA DAY AT SEA CARTAGENA COLOMBIA - this was the only place we were unsure of going to ,yet it was the nicest and friendliest . You actually dock in a beautiful area with birds of prey, parrots, peacocks etc and it is completely free to walk around, well worth seeing. We then got a taxi to visit the surrounding area to fill our day ( $20 each.) we were taken to see some amazing beauty spots and we were completely safe at all times. COLON PANAMA- AVOID AT ALL COSTS- This was a real eye opener. all the passengers were returning back to the ship within 10 mins due to the hassle and feeling un-safe. 4 of us walked pass the locals and got into a taxi asking to go to the centre to see things of interest, $3 each was all he asked for. He took us way out to a shopping outlet . We told him this isn't where we asked to go. After a lot of arguing as he wanted us to pay $120 to go to somewhere, we insisted he took us straight back to the ship. We were all relieved to be back on ship. To see the Panama Canal is about 90 mins drive away, we didn't book the trip, so it was another day on the ship as nothing else to do in Colon. PUERTO LIMON COSTA RICA- Did a day trip with other cruise people from one of the coach companies that are stationed on the docks. $20 and we saw several things and ended up at a lovely beach that was free to use, the waves are amazing, then brought back to our ship. DAY AT SEA- Managed to get a sunbed as I set my alarm for 6 am. If you can't beat them, join them. You are warned not to reserve the sunbeds, but no-body took any notice, and after 8 am they have more or less been taken. PORT ROYAL JAMAICA- Tender to shore. An absolute waste of time getting off the ship as nothing there except a run town small area with a place to get a drink and a ATM machine that didn't work. I asked a policeman about the area and said we wanted to see a place with history etc. He kindly offered to take the 4 of us into Kingston town accompanied by two policemen to a reputable taxi man. He took all our details and the taxi mans details for safety reasons. The policeman even stopped in a town for us to use the ATM machine with him guarding us, due to the area not being safe. We arrived at Kinston and there was our taxi waiting for us. The two policeman exchanged paperwork and a price was agreed for the day $15 each. We were shown around making a few stops with him with us and later returned to the dock, it was then that we paid him. If we hadn't have done this then we would have had another boring day on the ship fighting for a sunbed. Caribbean cruise? "No way". I'll stick to the beautiful Caribbean island cruises from Barbados, where every day you are docked in stunning scenery. CABIN- We asked to be moved after our first night, due to the noise above us and from the cleaners at 5am. We were in 3537 inside deck 3. We were given FOC an outside cabin 2006 on deck 2 which was a much bigger and better cabin. ENTERTAINMENT- Wasn't good apart from a group called Dem Boyze, and the ships staff entertainment show in Squid and Anchor. Better singers from the kitchen or engine room than the booked acts. Comedian we didn't find funny. Cog show we had seen before on Marella years ago. Squid and Anchor entertainment was good but impossible to get a seat and only lasted for 25 - 30 mins. Entertainment around the pool was ok during the day with quiz's . Films on pool deck was far too loud it was unbearable. Latitude 47 slow service. New Year was ok but no party hats or streamers. Sail away party wasn't as good as Marella. Some of the passengers were a bit rough and more interested in drinking all day and causing a scene which wasn't pleasant to see. We paid good money for this cruise and wanted to come home relaxed , hence it didn't happen. All in all I wouldn't go again on this cruise due to how it has shown lots of cut backs in food ,staff and entertainment, and the places we docked at. Jamaica is a lovely place but unfortunately where we docked we didn't see it.
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
1 Helpful vote