[QUOTE]Originally posted by Hank:
We know this ship very well having cruised on her 3 times with a 4th trip scheduled for April. Personally, we prefer (and actually love) the regular balcony cabins on the Caribe Deck (Categories BA and BB) because they are 1.5 times the size of other regular balconies and they are half covered and half in the open. When we are sitting in the open area of our Caribe Deck balcony we can look right down on the mini balconies below "D" deck. You have absolutely no privacy on those balconies. If you are on the Emerald you will be covered. I spend a lot of time helping folks with the European ports (we have been traveling in Europe for over 35 years) and would be happy to help if you post over on the European Port topic (than everyone can see and help). As to Venice, its a terrific tourist city (we will be cruising out of there (4th time) next October on the Emerald of the Seas)). Its worth spending 1 or 2 nights there in a hotel, but its very expensive. Also keep in mind that getting around Venice with luggage is a real hassle unless you want to spend a lot of money (about $120) to get a water taxi. There are stratagies for handling this port and lots of options for almost every port. Keep in mind that organized port tours (whether from the ship or private) are very expensive in Europe. Many ports can be handled on your own if you want to save money, but it takes some homework. Also keep in mind that you would need to change planes somewhere in Europe to fly to Venice which always increases the chances of luggage going astray. That is another good reason to fly-in a day or two early (lost luggage often catches-up the next day).