Small Ship Cruise vs River Cruisse
My wife and I recently took the "Treasures of Spain and Portugal" eastbound cruise May 2 to May 13. We had taken two previous river cruises with Tauck and loved both river cruises, even posted a great review on one of them in this Forum. Unfortunately, we cannot recommend this small ship cruise. Our cabin leaked and the ship, Windstar Star Breeze was tired and dated, in our opinion. The Tauck tours and the Tauck directors were excellent, but the ship, the ship food and wine, and even the service in some cases, were well below the levels we experienced on the Tauck river cruises.
You, and others looking at this post, should be aware that Tauck uses Ponant, not Windstar, for the bulk of the small ship cruises. It's a good idea to check cruise review sights, like cruisecritic.com to see what a particular ship is like and when it was last refurbished.
Hope your next trip is less of a disappointment.
Hopefully you and yours will have a most enjoyable trip on the Windstar Wind Surf.
@Ken from Vegas - thank you for the tip. Although Tauck still lists the Windstar Boats on the small cruise ships listings, we did learn (after our trip on the Star Breeze) that Tauck was moving many of its tours to the Ponant boats. Smart move.
And things do definitely change in 10 years!
I honestly will never travel on another Windstar boat after the Tauck Treasures of Spain and Portugal trip aboard the Windstar Star Breeze. The Star Breeze is NOT a Tauck Platinum Ship....it is more comparable to a Carnival Cruise.
From the moment we stepped on board the Star Breeze, someone wanted to sell us teeth cleaning, athletic shoe inserts, massage packages, etc. If I wanted to be trapped in a moving infomercial, then I could have done that for much cheaper than the Tauck WindStar Star Breeze.
Has anyone tried Crystal Cruises? I am interested to learn about those boats, too. Thank you,
I don't think that Tauck is changing cruise lines. They just use Ponant for certain trips and Windstar for others. They even use Princess for the Grand Alaska tour (they list this as a land cruise, not a small ship cruise for obvious reasons). They are adding an Alaska cruise only trip on Ponant for 2019.
Thank you for the information!
@Sealord My husband and I as well as another couple that we have traveled with via Tauck are also doing the Spain/Portugal trip on October 30th. When are you traveling? We are very much looking forward to our trip - it will be out first small ship sailing. We have done many Tauck riverboat cruises and have enjoyed each one.