We started off our cruise in venice, we had stayed the night before in venice in a hotel ( hotel floris) great location and great price. we came in by train and at the train station you could drop off your suitcases to the MSC desk which was â‚¬5 per suitcase. I would reccomend this as otherwise you are dragging your suitcases all over venice including a big bridge where there is no ramp. we got to the cruise terminal by the people mover which is â‚¬1 per person and its about 3 minutes and then their is a free shuttle bus that takes you to the check in area. Check in was grand. no delays, wasn't long queing.
The weather was nice in Venice. Sun was shining.
Bari - We arrived in Bari on a Sunday.. and everything was Closed!!! Not much you can do in Bari, there is a small walk along the promande which was nice, we had bari done in about an hour.. The little trains that are out side the Dock are pointless and a waste of money! every place they can take you is only a short distance on foot.
Kotakaloon - It's about a 10 minute walk from the dock into kotakaloon, its a small fishing village with very little shops. We went into olympia by train. the train goes in every hour.. its about a 45 minute train journey and 10euro pps. In olympia where the first ever olympic games was held.. its basically a pile of rocks everywhere. the weather was horrible.. it was thunder and lightning and the shops in olympia were a complete rip off.
Izmir- There is a market there but your better off waiting for istanbul to do your shopping. it was raining in izmir aswell and there was free ponchos being given out once off the ship. the taxi's are 120euro into ephesus. I didn't get off at izmir as the rain was pouring down and i wasn't really bothered to get off.
Istanbul- WHAT EVER YOU DO IN ISTANBUL DO NOT GET A TAXI! Taxi's in istanbul are a rip off and are there to get the best of you. we were foolish and we got a taxi back from the grand bazaar into the terminal, the taxi driver was horrible charging us 15euro when we only paid 10euro to go in. he drove around in circles and went the long way back. once in the taxi he wanted to charge us 25euro then 30euro and he drove like a maniac. when we finally got to the terminal we had no change so ended up giving him 50euro he then swapped the 50 euro within a second and gave us back 5 turkish lira making out thats what we handed him as the notes are similar, we didn't have any turkish lira on us and we couldn't of got it anywhere but we didn't think of that, we then gave him another 50 euro and we got about 70 turkish lira back which is worth about 5euro. It was a lesson to us. there is a tram service in istanbul and i would highly reccomend it other then getting a taxi. We did only pay 10euro going into istanbul where we did the blue mosque and the grand bazaar ( shopping area) it isn't cheap but the quality of cloths you get is good. Haggling with them inside the grand bazaar is your best offer.
Day at Sea- The day flew we thought it would of dragged but it didn't really. We played bingo and there is alot of entertainment stuff on during the day. the inside pool waspacked as it was raining that day at sea and not many opted for the outside pool.
Dubrovnik- Dubrovnik was Lovely, we got the shuttle bus in from the port as it was about a 30 minute walk in, we got the Msc shuttle bus which was 10euro pps. we should of got the taxi where for the four of us it would of only been 10euro but we weren't keen on taking anymore taxi's. Croatia is in the Eu but they do not take Euro. There is a Cable car in Dubrovnik which was about a 5 minute walk from where the shuttle busses dropped us off. they take visa in the actually ticket office but in the shop they don't. Wasn't much in Dubrovnik only the shopping and the castle.. which you had topay for.
The ship in general was lovely. We were on MSC splendida 2 years ago. there is a similariaty.. but Msc magnifica is alot smaller. The crew were Lovely!! There was 2 Gala nights on the ship where you were required to dress up and look smart. The food on board can get a bit boring but there are other restaurnts but you have to pay for them . If you have kids this is the cruise for you as kids go FREE!
The excurions are all over priced and a waste ofmoney when there is a method of transport at most docks and are reasonbly priced.