Yesterday, we arrived home from a fabulous 14-night Baltic cruise with Celebrity Cruises onboard Celebrity Silhouette.
We had been wanting to cruise with Celebrity for such a long time, but the opportunity (or should we say the right price?!) never made it a possibility. When Elliot came along we truly thought it would never be an option, but last autumn after we returned from our Canary Island cruise on Royal Caribbean’s Navigator of the Seas, our minds turned very quickly to our next cruise.
We were lucky to spot a Celebrity Cruises ‘sale’ in October… a 2nd/3rd passenger discount and the classic drinks package included gave us a fantastic price on a balcony cabin. The sale ended the day we saw the offer!! We weren’t really ready to book, our finances were not in a good state and we were really looking for something much later in 2018. The more we tried to talk ourselves out of it, the closer we got to booking it. Price comparisons with Princess Cruises and even P&O’s Britannia, which sailed the day after us, could not match it… against our better judgement at the time, we booked! And we are so very glad that we did 🙂
As soon as we boarded the beautiful Celebrity Silhouette it felt amazing, the crew were so welcoming and we were greeted with a complimentary glass of fizz, but what struck us most was the spaciousness and the relaxed and friendly atmosphere. Embarkation day for our other cruises has always felt great, but this had something special.
Our ports were:
- Zeebrugge – for Bruges, though we took the shuttle bus to Blankenberge
- Stockholm (overnight)
- St Petersburg (overnight) – though sadly the high winds meant we could not dock on either day, more on that later!
Travelling with a toddler is never easy, and so many people told us we were mad to do a Baltic cruise – to quote one Facebook cruise group member “Don’t do it, go on a Disney cruise.” – urghhh… how wrong they all are! A Disney cruise is our personal idea of hell (until we’re proven otherwise, of course!) and we strongly encourage families to not be put off by disparaging vocal passengers who insist you avoid the more cultural itineraries.
With Elliot in tow it does mean we don’t get to experience every aspect of the ships we sail on that we used to when travelling as a couple, but we have a damn good try to see as much as we can… with finances a bit tight this time, we couldn’t try all the speciality restaurants as we’d usually do, but we did go to Qsine, which was fantastic.
As Elliot’s only 2.5 years old, the kids clubs weren’t an option (they start at age 3) and the short timeframes for the family sessions didn’t quite fit in with our day-to-day ‘routine’, so we didn’t use the facilities of the kids area at all this time. Similarly, with babysitting needing to be booked 24 hours and us not being the best at planning ahead, we didn’t do that either… or maybe we do like having the little guy around more than we thought 😉
Throughout our cruise the crew and fellow passengers were very positive about us travelling as a little family… Elliot got a bit of a name for himself with his constant ‘No!’ response to anything and everything and his ‘Deck 4’ and ‘Going Up’ announcements in the lifts, regardless of where the lifts were heading!
Jamie Robins – aka Travel Blogger Jamie – has interviewed Tony about our Celebrity Silhouette experience… read the interview and see more of our photos at jamierobins.wordpress.com
More about Silhouette: