I'm new to the boards (as well as crusing and Europe) and wanted to get some recommendations of which Royal Caribbean excursions to take on my W. Mediterranean honeymoon! We're stopping in Marseilles, Nice, Rome, Naples and Florence. I see that hiring a private tour seems to be the best way to go, but as it's our first time, I'm paranoid of not getting back to port on time.
Welcome to the board! I disagree somewhat with Sealover's advice. Booking a tour separately from the cruise line does have that possibility. Chances are, you'll be fine, but especially in Europe, where many of the ports are quite a distance from the cities you may want to visit, if anything goes wrong - the car or bus breaks down, for example - and you get back to the port late, the ship will not wait for you if you did not book your excursion through them. You would then have to "catch up" to your ship at your own expense.
Most tour operators are professional, and have every intention of getting you back on time, but accidents do happen. Also, there are some less-than-professional guides out there who advertise - guess where - on the internet, and without a lot of knowledge and research, you have a slight chance of booking with them. I think you are right to consider the difference. If you are concerned about it, then book through the ship. Any extra cost that may exist will probably be worth it for your peace of mind.
We will be on the same ship on July 8th! We have been doing extensive research by reading a number of books on Mediterranean ports and on line cruise reviews. Initially, we had planned an RCCL excursion for every port, but now we have decided to take the train on our own to Florence and then possibly to Pisa. We understand that it is very easy to get around Florence on your own and can walk from one end of the city to the other. We were on the Adventure of the Seas last summer in the Caribbean and had a great time. Which excursion you pick depends on how much money and time you want to spend touring and what you are most interested in seeing. There are clear pictures of everything on CruiseReviews.com, and click on Port Reviews. I would be happy to tell you about our experience cruising with RC. I am sure you will have a great time. The ship has so much to offer, it is a shame we only have one day at sea to experience it. Be sure to study the daily newspaper of events that they give you the evening before. We did read it, but apparently not too well because we discovered afterwards that many of the questions we had were answered in that paper. The parades on the Prominade are really festive...be sure not to miss them. There were people of all ages on the ship and all nationalities too, and not one person we talked to was having a bad time.
Hope to see you on the cruise!
Bonnie and Dave
Originally posted by cruise_virgin:
wanted to get some recommendations of which Royal Caribbean excursions to take on my W. Mediterranean honeymoon! .
for your wedding. I am sure you will have a pretty nice honey mooncruise in the Mediterranean. If you book an excursion offered by Royal Caribbean, be sure, you will be back on your ship at the right time.
If you plan excursions by your own, it might be complicated. Nearly all my excursions we took until today (me and my family) ended without troubles. Naples will be a good port for your own excursions.
Have a nice cruise
What a wonderful honeymoon it will be! In my experience, the Voyager has been the most beautiful, comfortable ship I've ever cruised on.
Returned a few days ago from HAL Gems of Baltic tour. We were in St. Petersburg for two days and had booked excursions through the ship for both days. On the first day, we visited Peterhof in the afternoon and a Folkloric musical in the evening. Returning to the ship from Peterhof, we encountered horrendous traffic and then on the port (which is a very busy commercial port), we were delayed by a seemingly endless train. We emerged from the bus already late for the Folkloric departure! The tour guide was on the pier and stated she had held back the bus and would wait while we went in to get some water and a piece of fruit, etc. No time for dinner! We made it to the show, which was delayed on our behalf. Those who booked private tours were not so fortunate. I did not find the ship's tours to be overly costly, and the avoidance of hassle was worth every cent to us.
Many good wishes for a happy cruise and a long and fulfilling life together. ML