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Guest Solent Richard

Boring Itineraries

17 posts in this topic

Early in October I posted a comment on a general travel forum to the effect that I had booked a cruise on a ship's Maiden Season. In that post I included a reference to the itinerary...

 

http://www.silvertraveladvisor.com/index.cfm?v=Richard_Okill_StarWriter&fkArticleID=345&fuseaction=pubDsp.dspStarWriter

 

 

10923674883_de15d05377_z.jpg

 

 

Day 1 - Barcelona, Spain
Day 2 - Barcelona, Spain
Day 3 - Toulon, France
Day 4 - Monaco, Monte Carlo
Day 5 - Corsica (Ajaccio), France
Day 6 - Tuscany (Livorno), Italy
Day 7 -  Rome, Italy

Day 8 |- Rome, Italy 

 

(Incidentally, I started a similar thread on this site though at no time did I mention the itinerary booked...

 

http://www.cruiseclubforum.com/topic/380-solent-richard-to-catch-another-viking-maiden/    )

 

Imagine my surprise when I was sent a link to another forum where this exact cruise itinerary was being discussed and, with the exception of one comment - that the price range was beyond the member,  the comments contained rather derogatory remarks including 'Boring', 'Not Impressed' and 'Underwhelmed'.

 

I found that rather strange. Particularly in view of the fact that there were three ports of call that my wife and I had never cruised to together ( Toulon,  Ajaccio and Monte Carlo), Viking cruise line include a variety of all included excursions at every port.

 

Add to this the fact that you can probably count on your fingers the number of cruise ships that can actually berth at Monte Carlo I wondered what  some folk actually seek in an itinerary.

 

Take Toulon for example...

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Toulon

 

174px-Montage_Toulon.JPG

 

 

... in addition to being well placed in the delightful district of Provence.

 

For instance, two of the comments came from cruisers whom I know recently visited Yalta and never left the immediate town area when there is just so much to see out and beyond Yalta.

 

While I readily accept we are all different I do sometimes struggle to understand the mentality of some cruisers. We all pay a fair amount of money for our cruises and surely fully taking in what is on offer makes good sense.

 

It has always been my philosophy to make the most of every port whether it be sightseeing, sampling the local food or just hitting one of the best beaches.

 

The house is open for discussion.

Harvey likes this

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Hi Richard

I did an almost identical itinerary on Azamara Journey,I certainly enjoyed the cruise!

Monte Carlo is a fantastic , beautiful port with lots to see and do ,even just to soak up the atmosphere there is amazing ! Likewise Ajaccio in Corsica has beautiful beaches !

The other ports like Livorno , Rome ,Barcelona like others who cruise a lot we have done many times but hey there is always something new to find each time you visit !

vena72 likes this

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I must admit that these days the ports of call are not always foremost in my mind when booking a cruise. It's the ship which I'm most interested in. This may well be due to the fact that I now cruise by myself - a very different experience. One of my best cruises since being widowed was the voyage to and fro New York on the Queen Mary 2 - two weeks at sea with just a few hours in NY. Loved it. (Mind you - the QM2 is a fantastic ship.)

 

So - no, I never find the itinerary boring.

 

cheers

Harvey

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Hi Richard

I did an almost identical itinerary on Azamara Journey,I certainly enjoyed the cruise!

Monte Carlo is a fantastic , beautiful port with lots to see and do ,even just to soak up the atmosphere there is amazing ! Likewise Ajaccio in Corsica has beautiful beaches !

The other ports like Livorno , Rome ,Barcelona like others who cruise a lot we have done many times but hey there is always something new to find each time you visit !

 

Thanks for that Northern Star. We too have done Livorno - well Pisa and Florence- but I'm sure Viking will be offering something different, they normally do.

 

Who knows, they may even offer a tour of the Vatican when we have our overnight in Rome. 

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I must admit that these days the ports of call are not always foremost in my mind when booking a cruise. It's the ship which I'm most interested in. This may well be due to the fact that I now cruise by myself - a very different experience. One of my best cruises since being widowed was the voyage to and fro New York on the Queen Mary 2 - two weeks at sea with just a few hours in NY. Loved it. (Mind you - the QM2 is a fantastic ship.)

 

So - no, I never find the itinerary boring.

 

cheers

Harvey

 

Exactly what I would comment Harvey. When one has a number of cruises under one's belt then the ship often becomes the destination itself.

 

I'd have been thrilled to have had your acquaintance on QM2 this week as I'm travelling solo myself.

 

Passport, Visa and ESTA all in order.

 

I'm rather quite excited about it, making the odd 'Gentleman Host' redundant.

 

:D  :D  :D

Harvey likes this

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How can anyone say that itinerary is boring, there are lots of lovely places to visit at all of those ports. If they have already been out and about why not explore the port towns and help their local economy with a glass or two of something cold or chilled.

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I agree totally with Vena72. There is no such thing as a boring itinerary. There may be a case for someone to say they are no longer interested in a certain port as they have been there so many times there is nothing new for them to see but to date I have never met that person. I have visited many ports a number of times but always find something new. Last time I was in Civitavecchia a port I have sailed into many times I found the church of the Holy Japanese Martyrs dedicated to the 26 Martyrs of Nagasaki. There is always something new if you look for it.

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I suppose it is a matter of taste and the persons previous experience of a particular port. Personally, I would say it is not the most riveting of itineraries but that is because I have been to Monte Carlo and have done numerous land based holidays in the Nice area. Large ships i.e. size of Norwegian Jade have no issue docking in Monte Carlo. I was not impressed with Toulon and rate Nice, Villefranche, Eze, St Paul de Vence, Cannes, St Tropez, Marseille, Aix, Avignon, Arles, Cassis head and shoulders above it. I have cruised out of Barcelona more often than I have hot dinners and have visited all the Gaudi buildings, Gothic Barcelona, Montjuc area and Montserrat so I would be stuck for something new to do there. Similarly I have been to Pisa and climbed the Leaning Tower and to Florence on two occasions saw David the first time and Uffizi on the second. That said, I am reliably told that Lucca is worth a look. Rome holds not interest to me - the only thing that I feel I have left to do is to climb the Vatican dome. Ajaccio is the only new port. I cannot find Civitavecchia to be very interesting and Ostia Antica which is nearby (apparently) - well how does it compare to Pompeii, Carthage, Ephesus, Jerash?

 

Boring may not have been the correct description, perhaps unimaginative, non-innovative may be better. As regards 'underwhelmed' or 'not-impressed' well these are just personal feelings and who am I to argue with a person's feelings - however, for me who has lots more of the world to see I too am not impressed or overwhelmed by this itinerary.

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I agree Richard, every port has it good points there is always something interesting to find, take Livorno for instance, [used to be called Leghorn] from where the British Navy used to sail.

Just outside the port is an old British Naval cemetery from the 18th century and before littered with the graves of young British sailors and the headstones tell so many sad stories, it unfortunately needs some tender loving care, if you are interested in visiting it you have to visit the local fire station and ask for the key.CG

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We have just booked whilst on board the Aurora this month a very similar cruise from Southampton and back on the Azura (Just so happened ship was going to places we wanted to visit) next year, going to virtually all the places mentioned. calling at such places like Ajaccio, Barcelona, Monte Carlo, Rome etc.
 
After reading some of above replies adding to my expectations of seeing these places
:rolleyes: 

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I suppose it is a matter of taste and the persons previous experience of a particular port. Personally, I would say it is not the most riveting of itineraries but that is because I have been to Monte Carlo and have done numerous land based holidays in the Nice area. Large ships i.e. size of Norwegian Jade have no issue docking in Monte Carlo. I was not impressed with Toulon and rate Nice, Villefranche, Eze, St Paul de Vence, Cannes, St Tropez, Marseille, Aix, Avignon, Arles, Cassis head and shoulders above it. I have cruised out of Barcelona more often than I have hot dinners and have visited all the Gaudi buildings, Gothic Barcelona, Montjuc area and Montserrat so I would be stuck for something new to do there. Similarly I have been to Pisa and climbed the Leaning Tower and to Florence on two occasions saw David the first time and Uffizi on the second. That said, I am reliably told that Lucca is worth a look. Rome holds not interest to me - the only thing that I feel I have left to do is to climb the Vatican dome. Ajaccio is the only new port. I cannot find Civitavecchia to be very interesting and Ostia Antica which is nearby (apparently) - well how does it compare to Pompeii, Carthage, Ephesus, Jerash?

 

Boring may not have been the correct description, perhaps unimaginative, non-innovative may be better. As regards 'underwhelmed' or 'not-impressed' well these are just personal feelings and who am I to argue with a person's feelings - however, for me who has lots more of the world to see I too am not impressed or overwhelmed by this itinerary.

 

Thank you for your comprehensive comment 132LK132. (I'd much prefer to be on Christian names though, that's a mouthful)

 

I have noted that a similar itinerary by a member of the same forum has been welcomed.

 

Funny old world really.

 

PS. I love Civitavecchia. I treat it as a kind of Vigo (great seafood restaurants) with the added attraction of some excellent Italian shoe shops.

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One of the (many) great things about a cruise is that you visit a number of different places and have a number of days at sea. There are places that you might not want to visit for an extended period of time, but there are very few places that are not worthy of a few hours of exploration. The fact that there is different things to do in different ports is a great bonus for our young children.

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