The MS Boudicca is just our kind of cruise ship… small, intimate. Not the brash, mega-ships that come to mind when thinking of cruising.
It is operated by Fred Olsen Cruise Lines. They own 4 ships of similar size and character, Braemar, Balmoral, Black Watch and ours, Boudicca. In fact Black Watch and Boudicca are sister ships with similar layouts and facilities.
We can only imagine cruising on a small cruise ship like these and this is what attracts us to Fred Olsen.
The general feel of Fred Olsen ships is one of understated elegance. It generally appeals to the older cruisers and singles as there are almost no facilities on board for the ammusement of kids and in fact, on our cruise, there were no kids at all and that is in spite of it not being designated adult only. To be honest, you would need to be mad to take kids on these ships in my opinion unless they are happy swimming all day!
So what was our opinion of MS Boudicca?
Well, very good in all respects!
Ambience was relaxed and friendly.
It was clean. Very clean in fact and there were staff regularly cleaning all the public areas, stairways, toilets etc. It was very comforting.
Staff were always friendly and helpful and we couldn’t fault them except that in the restaurants at lunchtimes they could be a little rushed and stressed but it didn’t spoil our experience. It was just a thing we noticed. More on the food and restaurants in a seperate post.
Each day we had a short 5 minute briefing from Captain Lars Kjeldsen over the ship tannoy keeping us very well informed on progress, the weather,reminding us to wash our hands and use the gels (more later) and to take care of ourselves. Here is the briefing from the last day at sea:
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Each evening we had delivered to our cabin (when the maid made up the bed for the night), we received a single sheet information sheet called “The Daily Times” which, as you might have guessed, detailed all the happenings due to take place the following day. This was invaluable… in fact… essential reading to make sure you didn’t miss anything important. All tour info was in there along with restarant times, show details etc.
I won’t detail each and every part of the ship here as I will be going more detail and more photos in later posts when discussing those particular aspects of the cruise but here are some photos to give you a feel of the ship in general: