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llsedona 08-29-2009 06:25 PM

I will be taking my first cruise in November. It is on the Grand princess and ports of call are: Naples, Athens, Istanbul, Kusadasi, Mykonos, Port Said/Cairo and Alexandria. The only place I have previously visited was Naples. I am a bit overwhelmed by the number of choices for shore excursions in Athens. Any advice? Also, since I have been to Pompeii I was thinking of driving the Amalfi coast for an excursion. Any and all recommmendations for excursions are invited!

penny3333 08-31-2009 07:47 AM

Hi Ilsedona, welcome to Cruise-Chat. Wish I could help you with your itinerary, but we haven't had the privilege of sailing on that itinerary. I did want to welcome you aboard. Hopefully, someone that has done your itinerary will see your post. If not, there are some great tips in the FAQ section, a little further down the page. Best wishes!

Hank 08-31-2009 01:09 PM

What a fabulous itinerary and its even on one of our favorite ships. We are pretty familiar with all of your ports and we think it is probably the best itinerary of any short cruise in the world. If you are want to take excursions in all those places you sure have some tough decisions. Also keep in mind that quite a few of these ports can be done on your own for substantial savings. Specifically, Naples, Athens, Istanbul and Mykonos are all good candidates for the independent traveler. For Ephesus, I strongly recommend booking a private tour through either EKOL or Hello Ephesus instead of using a cruise ship tour and make sure that any tour includes the Terrace Houses (within Ephesus). As to Athens, most first time visitors want to see the Acropolis which can be done on a tour or on your own. In addition, many enjoy just walking around the Plaka district (a major shopping area) and the adjacent Syntagma Square. In Cairo you certainly want to take a tour to the Pyramids at Giza and the co-located Sphinx as well as a visit to the Egytpian Museum with the amazing King Tut room as well as the mummy room. There is also a fun shopping area in Cairo called the Khalili Bazaar which is a lot of fun and included in some tours. Regarding the Amalfi Coast, the best way to tour this area is with a private tour that is done in a van or car. Large tour buses are not permitted to enter the wonderful town of Positano (they only get you a view from above) which is the main reason you want to be in a car.


ny4cruise 09-08-2009 07:27 PM

There is so much more than the Acropolis to see in Athens. The sites are all located in the center of Athens but spread out. It is always very helpful to have a professional to point everything out to you and to provide you with all the necessary information. Being driven up to the entrance of the sites is an important plus too. We had a great tour (family of six) when in Athens with Nikos Loukas from I highly recommend him.

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