Barcelona -venice circle 21 aug 2013
mark devenport | December 26, 2013 | Celebrity Cruises | Celebrity Equinox
This was our 7th Celebrity cruise and as always it was just an outstanding holiday. The solstace class ships are beautiful and modern yet stylish . Service was faultless and you will struggle to find happier crew anywhere else. , Celebrity is renowned for its high quality of cuisine and it didn’t fail to deliver at all times of the day in whatever venue , from room service, main restaurant, buffet restaurant, mast grill , Bistro on 5 or speciality restaurants , a wide variety of food for every taste. The food was commented by everybody we spoke to as being above the standard of other quality and prmiumcruise lines. Celebrity although has a full daily programme of events , maybe not so high energy as others and if that is what you want to do, climbing walls pr ice skating etc then Celebrity is not for you. Entertainment was okay and included late night comedians, vocalists, instrumentalists and production cast.
We were on board ship within 10 minutes of arriving at registartion , speeded a little by us being Elite members of the captains club,
we had visited our first 4 ports on previous cruise but they all provided good options for a revisit. Villefranche which in itself is anice little port but not enough to spend a day in, but for 3-5 euros each you can get a train to Nice (west) or Monaco ( east) both offering great things to see, ( check times of trains in advance as after 12 they are every hour and allow 10 minutes at least to buy your ticket from a machine only in French) . This a tendered port and Celebrity if they have a weakness , efficiency on tendering is it !!
Next Livorno, again you can spend maybe an hour there and be done but you have beautiful Florence which by train is around an hour . or Pisa which is only 10 -15 mins on the train. You have to pay the port shuttle bus ( no walking allowed) from the ship to teh town. Then you have to get another local bus to teh station , about another ten minutes. so all in all can take up to an hour in worst case from walking off ship to be on platform with a ticket. Civitaveccia for Rome, Having spent 3 days in Rome before, we just stayed in town and explored the market and the town for couple of houes beforfe enjoying everything the ship has to offer. Naples, we have been told not to walk around naples as tourists have been subject to crime, but with the Amelfi coast , Pompeii ( A MUST) , or Capri all accessed from Naples by road or ferry you have no reason to stay around in Naples. Dubrovnik , amazing walled city , if you have plenty of energy and stamina do the walls. Pay for the ships shuttle, it would be quite a route march to walk, Venice was simply amazing. The ship has a shuttle boat directly from the dock , or there is a waterbus also directly from the dock to st marks but goes the same way the ship sailed in. We walked from the port to teh people mover ( Airport type train shuttle) 1 euro takes a short but easy journey to a big square . turn left and walk to the waterbus ticket station 100yds away and take the number 1 line ( 7 euro each ticket one way for upto hour duration) this takes you down the grand canal and you see so much more including Rialto bridge etc. takes about 40 mins to get to st marks . If you are not intending to keep going back and forward several times it makes no sense to buy a shuttle ticket from the ship. Our final port was a delight , Kotr in Montenegro, The sail in was beautiful with several long “Fjord” type channels cruising down which were stunning and then KOTR was just like a smaller Dubrovnik , with an old walled town with lots of charachter and walkways with squares and plenty of shopping. A truly beautiful port , but has to be tendered by these bigger ships.
The average age range on this cruise was much younger than previous cruises, due to being August , but Celebrity is not just for the more senior and there were many young children, teenagers, and 20’s plus on board, with the majority I would say in my age group ( 50s ) . This was a perfect 12 day Itinerary ( except maybe teh first sea day was not until day 5 ,after 4 long tour days) and I can not praise Celebrity highly enough , quality , service, food , staff , and totsal experience and we will always choose Celebrity first.
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