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Review: Ship visit to Fred. Olsen's Braemar with Ramblers Cruise & Walk Holidays

Travel Service - Tour Operator/Travel Provider

Southampton, United Kingdom

An excellent introduction to 'Cruise & Walk'

  • By SilverTraveller DavidT

    138 reviews

    Ribbon Ribbon Ribbon Ribbon

  • May 2019

122 people found this review helpful

It was thanks to Silver Travel Advisor (!) that my wife and I were able to take advantage of a day visit to Fred.Olsen’s Braemar cruise ship, an event hosted jointly with Ramblers Holidays.

The aim of the visit was to promote (and recruit customers for!) holidays that combine cruising and rambling, and as such those accepted for the event had to be interested in both! We are fairly novice cruisers, but are regular members of our local U3A rambling group, and as such qualified for the day and happily paid £15 each for the privilege!

And what a privilege it was! We had a wonderful day! Although a rather long drive from our home in Devon, we arrived at the cruise terminal in Southampton to be greeted by Steven Aldridge, a Silver Travel representative, and staff from Ramblers Holidays. Once having “checked in” and surrendered our passports (in case we stowed away!), first stop was Braemar’s show lounge where we were welcomed with a drink (sparkling wine, bucks fizz, or orange juice for the drivers) and a short talk about how the cruising/rambling holidays work. We’ve been to these events before, and came away annoyed by “hard sell tactics”, but this wasn’t like that at all. It was a clear, concise explanation of what is involved – and included – in the holidays, and in which of Fred.Olsen’s ports of call they take place. We were sold – not literally, as there wasn’t even an opportunity to purchase on the day – but are certainly thinking about one for next year.

The best part of the day, however, was the tour of the Braemar. We’ve been on a cruise on the Black Watch in the past, but really enjoyed looking round another of Fred’s fleet, and having background information from our guide on the workings of this lovely cruise ship. We saw the bars, lounges, restaurants, fitness suite, spa, swimming pools and of course a range of the cabins available. We decided that one of the luxurious suites would suit us very well indeed!

A further highlight was the lunch, which was included in the price we paid. We weren’t sure how this would work, given that the Braemar had just docked from one cruise, with passengers disembarking, before setting off on another. However, we were delighted to be treated just like one of the new passengers experiencing their first meal on board. The buffet lunch was marvellous – a huge choice of starters, main courses and desserts (all delicious!), accompanied by as much wine as we wanted (which was even more of a pity for me, the driver!)

We left the ship excited about when and where we could go on our next cruise, and which of the rambling holidays would suit us best. You might say the organisers achieved their aims, and if you like the idea of combining the two, I would certainly recommend having a look at the website above, and requesting their brochure.

Ramblers Cruise & Walk Holidays

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This review is solely based on the opinion of a Silver Travel Advisor member and not of Silver Travel Advisor Ltd.

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Other Members' Thoughts - 1 Comment(s)

  • coolonespa
    over 2 years ago
    Thank you for making the long drive up from Devon and for this excellent review, I'm so glad you enjoyed the day & that it has encouraged you to consider a future "rambling" cruise with Fred Olsen. It was a pleasure to meet you both on the day. Happy travelling.