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MS Arcadia

A British Cruise liner in the P&O Cruises Fleet

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Arcadia's Winter Wonderland Cruise

  • Feb 13, 2010

This was our third cruise aboard P&O's Arcadia which took place in December 2009.

Maybe not the most popular itinerary at this time of year, but certainly different.
It was a ten night cruise around North West Europe, sailing from & back to Southampton.
Our first port of call was Zeebruge for Bruge.
First tip, take the ship's shuttle bus into Blankenburg & then take the train into Bruges. It just costs a few Euros return.
I like Bruges. Been there a few times & the local Mussels & Chips washed down with some local Zot Beer are a must for me ;-)

Our second port of call was Amsterdam.
Now I love Amsterdam. I know some people are not so keen.
Another tip, when you exit the cruise terminal, turn left & walk maybe about 100M & you come to a tram stop (#25 or 26).  This tram goes to Dam Square which is a perfect place to start exploring Amsterdam. Far better than walking all the way in, especially with all the traffic & bicycles around :-o
I can recommend a nice Coffee Shop that sells lovely cake ;-)  'Homegrown Fantasy'. Also a good Bar/Restaurant called The Grasshopper. 

Our third port was Hamburg.
Now the temperature has dropped significantly. Its bloody freezing  (lol)
I'd never seen so many Xmas markets in one city. It was Xmas City :-)
Also I'd never seen so many people crammed into one City. Great atmosphere though with street parades etc.

Port number four was Oslo.
Still very cold, as expected here really as this is the northern most point of our cruise & it is Dec 14th.
Been here a few times & its quite a pretty City, especially with all the snow around. very, very expensive though. Both Norway & Sweden are very expensive. Well they are to us Brits anyway.

Port five was Aarhus in Denmark.
Been here before as well. Not much there I thought, apart from some nice clothes shops, but again quite expensive. As was our lunch there of Pizza & wine. Around £50 for two Pizzas & two 150ml glasses of wine :-o

Our last port of call was Gothenburg, Sweden's 2nd largest City.
We went to a theme park which had been turned into a Xmas theme park :-)
It was very pretty but very cold.

I like Arcadia. She's definitely in my top three ships.
Big, but not too big & not too glitzy. I like a ship to be a ship & know that I'm at sea, rather than being in a floatring town like some of these monsters that are appearing nowadays. Just my opinion of course :-)

We were in cabin C56 or stateroom as they are now known. I still prefer to call them cabins ;-)
Good cabins with everything you need including tea & coffee making facilities.

I like the pub aboard Arcadia (The Rising Sun) & most other places to be honest except the so called Nightclub which I think is the worst Nightclub I've ever seen at sea. Its horrible (lol)

I'll review other specific parts of the ship in more detail at a later date.

Anyway, another great cruise & will certainly be back onboard P&O's Arcadia in the future.

Now I must get that video edited :-)
Arcadia's in Oslo Bruges Hamburg Gothenburg

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February 13, 2010
Wow, quite an itinerary. All those cities have amazing architecture that I would love to see. I like smaller ships as well, though I haven't been on one yet. Thanks for the great review and the nice photos!
February 13, 2010
Beautiful pictures and great review
More MS Arcadia reviews
review by . February 11, 2010
   Orchid Restaurant I liked it in here. Very nice airy restaurant overlooking the deck. Small intimate area’s and tables nicely laid out. Will definitely try this.     Cover charge!     Orchid Bar Again a really nice bar, overlooking sun deck area. Contempory wicker furniture.     Diversions The room dedicated to a new training method involving gliding cables – good for the fitness folk.     The Retreat Bit …
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   Hello, my name is David & I'm addicted to cruising :-)    So let's escape to sea
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MS Arcadia is a British cruise liner, the second largest in the P&O Cruises fleet. She was built by the Fincantieri company of Italy in a period of just twenty months. She was launched in April 2005 and named by Dame Kelly Holmes. An earlier ship of the same name is now operating as the Ocean Village.

Arcadia was ordered by Holland America Line in 2000 as their fifth Vista class vessel. In 2003 she was allocated to Cunard Line to become their MS Queen Victoria. Shortly before her launch the decision was made to transfer the ship to the P&O Cruises fleet. As a result, Arcadia has a Cunard style mast similar to those found on the QE2 and the QM2. She also sports a modified QE2 style funnel (with cowling removed) instead of the traditional P&O style funnel found on the purpose built MV Oriana (1995) and MV Aurora.


Arcadia uses the Azipod system which is an azimuthing electric propulsion drive where the propulsion motor is installed inside a submerged azimuthing (unlimited 360 degrees) pod and coupled directly to an extremely short propeller shaft. The variable speed electric (AC/AC) drive produces smooth torque over the entire speed range including zero speed. The Azipod propulsion system gives the ship outstanding manoeuvring capabilities. It allows full turns at high speed with a radius of less than a ship length. Almost equal speed can be achieved ahead and astern. Rudders as well as stern thrusters are obsolete if an Azipod propulsion is installed ...
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