My cruise options

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Mrscreative
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Re: My cruise options

Post by Mrscreative » Sat Jan 12, 2019 6:07 am

I don’t know whether we are being foolish or wise by making all our own arrangements but time will tell! Dh and I are happy with the hotels we selected and will just have to live with them. At least no more than 3 nights at any given place. I wasn’t brave enough to arrange an Airbnb though because of the language barriers. We opted not to go for an apartment because I doubt we’ll be cooking much with all the sightseeing we intend to do. We can keep food costs down by visiting their wonderful outdoor markets and picking up some fruits and bread and cheeses there.This is a once in a lifetime opportunity for both of us so we won’t be skimping.

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Mrscreative
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Re: My cruise options

Post by Mrscreative » Tue Jan 15, 2019 8:01 am

To all you experienced cruisers:
Did you find it best to book a lot of excursions in advance or is it best to wait last minute and book on the ship? I was looking through what was offered and a bit taken aback by the price! We don’t want to spend any more than $500.00 for the both of us. I’m just afraid if we’re not up to it that day, a lot of money could be lost.

rinty
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Re: My cruise options

Post by rinty » Tue Jan 15, 2019 12:03 pm

OOOH, I get to stick my oar in again ! ;)

I book onboard but I book immediately as I would hate to miss out on a good excursion. I have known passengers who haven't done so and not been able to book what they'd like.

I haven't cruise with Princess so don't know whats best. I would say if you see something you REALLY want to do I'd book now.

Looking at your itinery, you will be staying in Rome yourself so no need to book anything . Ditto Barcelona. I would do" the Sagrada Familia and enjoy some time in Las Ramblas soaking up the atmosphere.....

Do you know what excursiosn the boat offers ? For example , you go to Toulon. For me, I would look for and book an excursion to Aix en Provence if it was offered. Otherwise I would just enjoy the local area...and I know meals are included on a cruise but when we went to Marseille ( not too far away) we ate bouillbaisse in the Vieux Port ( absolutely gorgeous) and took a short boat ride to Chateau D'If, the small island prison where The Count of Monte Cristo was based.

The ships ususally offer cheap transport from the ships berth to the main port areas. That's what we did, I think it was free actually.....we went to the wonderful Vieux Port and paid around 8 euro max for the short boat ride to Chateau D'if. Greatday , very inexpensive.

Livorno, yes book your excursion. They will include entrance tickets which you simply couldn't arrange yourself on the day, say if you went to the Uffizi gallery in Florence. I would be hard pressed to choose but I would prob choose a visit to the Tower of Pisa.

I wouldn't book excursions in Kotor as the place itself looks wonderful, not would I in Malta. Are you going to Valletta ?

As I've said, wild horses wouldn't make me visit the filthy hole that is Messina :shock:

Corfu, we love Greece so I'd prob book a local taxi ride ( share with other passengers of there isn't a shuttle from the berth ) and sit in a nice tavern with a view and eat Greek salad ;) No excursion needed.

Naples. The port is FABULOUS, the Bay of Naples is stunning. The various excursions offered to us were.......a trip to Capri, Pompeii, Herculaneum or a trip to Vesuvious (!!!!) If you area history buff I'd chose Pompeii.

On both trips where we stopped in Naples, the Pompeii trips sold out immediately

The benefit of a ship excursion is that IF you are on their trip are you are delayed....the ship can't leave without you. Otherwise, yes it can and you see it happening. Hence our panic in Barcelona !!!!!

For me , re trips , I wouldn't stint, its not like you can pop back in 6months. If there is somewere or something you especially want to see or do, book it.

I think you have a lovely mix of places, you don't need to book excursiosn every day, you have lots of days.....( for me anyway) in Kotor, Malta and Corfu where you needn't book anything and you will still enjoy your day in those ports doing your own thing.

ANYWAY, just my opinion.

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Mrscreative
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Re: My cruise options

Post by Mrscreative » Tue Jan 15, 2019 1:11 pm

Thanks so much Rinty! There was a bike tour in Kotor we were interested in but it’s pretty pricey- about $180 each Canadian including a light lunch and bike/helmet rentals and a group guide. I read all the reviews- most extremely positive but a couple of bad reviews from people not properly sized to the bike. I’m somewhat petite and it’s not fun trying to ride a bike that’s too long large for you.

I have spoken to someone who used Princess and they advised only booking a few tours. There is often good last minute deals and they are almost let go at a loss. I must bear in mind all prices quoted are in US dollars so will have to do my math.

I am thinking of only booking perhaps 2 paid excursions for the places we really want to go.

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Jackielou
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Re: My cruise options

Post by Jackielou » Thu Jan 17, 2019 7:36 am

Creative, when we travel we book every tour that we can. I think maybe we missed one in both our trips.

Those booked journeys are really worth it. Most times you have an experienced guide and a bit of free time to wonder around.

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