Number of Cruises: 15
Cruise Line: Holland America
Sailing Date: 09-29-2008
Itinerary: Mediterranean Romance
I wanted to add this review since so many were negative and we had a very positive experience. Our cruise started off in Venice and continued down toward Greece around Sicily and up the western coast of Italy then to Barcelona. The ports were wonderful and the crew was even better. All parts of the trip were great and a bargain for the price. Each port had so much to do and a tour lecturer, Tom, who was most informative. The stops were all memorable and the weather was warm and comfortable. The food was very good and the pasta station on the Lido deck was fabulous. They cook it right in front of you and it was delicious. All of these touches and the friendliness of all the staff was the best. Especially Honky Dory. He worked on the Lido deck and after one introduction he could remember everyone's name. It was a wonderful skill and all appreciated being greeted by him with a warm hello. We ate at open seating and missed having th same waiter each night but found their system ran very smoothly and we never waited to be seated. It worked out well. vry impressed with the steak which was offerede nightly in lieu of the menued items. The cabin steward couldn't help us enough and called us by our names. That made it very personal and friendly. The room was always spotless and clean. I need him at home! The room showed sign of age and use but was still clean and well kept. Fine for me since we only slept there and used the facilities. We also opted for an inside guaranteed room and got upgraded to the top floor. I felt if we wanted a view the top deck was the best spot and the weather was great so it was the best. The nightly show was the only part of the onboard activites that we took advantage of. We enjoyed the shows and found them to be of a better quality than most ships. They were not the Las Vagas type. Excursions to the islands were the best. They seemed to be the best way to see the most area in a short time while in port. I highly recommend the one in Santorini to the town of Oia and the donkey ride down the cliff. Great place!! I also thought Argostoli was best seen with a guide. It had the best beaches, and quaint villages. Sicily was beautiful and the town of Tourmina was a place full of history and small streets and shops. It also had an old Greeco-Roman theater on the hill. Our trip was wonderful and the reviews did not do it justice. An added tip is to use the main desk to exchange all money for Euros. They give the best rate and charge no fee. Getting off the ship was as smooth as getting on. We took the Barcelona highlights tour for 4 hours and found it to be great too. I recommend that too.