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The Ventura - Owner P & O Cruises

We have only made one trip on the Ventura and that was a return trip from Barbados around the Caribbean in 2009.

Pictures of the cabin used and the ship facilities can be viewed in the Ventura's photo gallery.

The Ventura is an family ship and, at just over 116,000 tons. It is one of the largest in the P&O fleet and can carry over 3,000 passengers and when full we thought it overcrowded. It can then be difficult to find vacant sunbeds on deck and it becomes a real bun fight in the buffet restaurants. While we very much enjoyed the cruise we thought this a downside, so much so we hardly used the self service buffet facilities and we were glad we had booked a balcony cabin with our own seating in the sun.

The Ventura has 19 wheelchair accessible cabins of varing grades suitable for a full time wheelchair users. As with other ships these cabins are very much in demand and they are very often fully booked as much as 12 months in advance so if one of these is required it is advisable to book very early. We chose cabin C301 and it and the balcony, was spacious being 50 percent larger to accommodate wheelchair users. Prior to our UK departure our travel agent, Travel Counsellors, had tried to obtain a "monkey pole" for the holiday but this proved impossible. P&O offered us a hoist and although we did not require its lifting capability, we accepted this to use as an over the bed "monkey pole". It was easy enough to remove the lifting harness and fit our own trapeze handle. The adapted bathroom with a wheel in hand shower and fold down shower seat was almost perfect. The toilet height of 18 inches was a little low but with our own 2 inch riser was perfect for Wendy. It is worth noting here that cabin C301 is very similar in layout and facilities to Cabin B301 which we later used on the Emerald Princess although the balcony on the Ventura was bigger. Getting about on board was not difficult once you knew your way around. There were 14 decks accessible to passengers and all doors to open decks were ramped with at least one automatic opening one leading onto the larger decks. However, some sun deck areas were not accessible and some ramps were a little steep. There were four swimming pools and one was equipped with a hoist. None of the jacuzzis were accessible. Access to the theatre, where wheelchair spaces were provided was ramped but was quite steep.

The food and service were good and all dietary needs can be met if they are given notice of requirements before sailing.

Cruises taken on the Ventura:

Caribbean 2009