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This is the first time I am writing a review on Cruise Critic. Please forgive me if the order is not right.
I recently was on the lovely Celebrity Silhouette with my wife. Embarked in Civitavecchia Rome December 1st - December 16th, 2012 in Ft. Lauderadale.
The ship was the nicest ship I have been on. Oasis of the Seas was also an eye popper but in a different way.
Everything thing was great on the ship, from the Bistro Five service to the main dining room service with live music in the grand Foyer where cruise passengers were dancing.
The only real complaint I have about Celebrity is in the Oceanview Cafe where buffet breakfast and lunch is served daily. I noticed this as well on my Celebrity Century voyage to Alaska in July. Thought it was a one off. The workers who cleans tables don't seem to be as efficient as other cruiselines. I would see them walking by the tables where ther are plates and untentsils. Not sure what the issue was. So sometimes More
it was hard to find tables to sit. Despite this I would still go on Celebrity but in their Solstice class vessels.
We stayed a night in Rome. Public transit in Italy is really cheap and is based on the honor system. It was raining when we arrived that night but go on the express bus that we paid $15 Euros per person for. There was also a city like bus for 4 Euros. Not sure why we didn't take that option. They both take you to the Main Termini station.
Embarking in Civitavecchia was easy since it was slow season and sinc only the Celebrity Silhoutte and the Norwegian ship was there. The Norewegian was docked quite a ways.
Taking this Westbound transatlantic was great because as we were returning back to North America, the time would go back an hour almost every day. This was great because you wont' feel jetlag when you return back to you home city or you won't feel as much of a jetlag. Less
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Port and Shore Excursions
Barcelona is obviously a destination that everybody must go. We we got off the ship there was a pier transfer bus to take us to the beginning of Las Ramblas. This bus cost only 2 Euros each way.
My wife and I took the metro from Las Ramblas to Diagonal station and transferred lines to Sagrada Familia station where the famous unfinished Gaudi tower was. An amazing church. Went up the tower(extra fee)to get an amazing scenery of Barcelona.
After we took the metro to another Gaudi's work called Park Guell.
We later took the metro to shopping district and walk down Catalonia and ended up in Las Ramlas street to the beginning point of our trip. Major shopping strip for people who likes high end or low end.
Paella is a must try for those who never had it before.
We then took the bus that took cruise passengers back to the dock.
We docked in Livorno which was the 1st port of call on this voyage. My wife and I been to Florence before so we did not go to Florence. Instead we went to Pisa. We didn't take the cruiseline excursion because there wasn't one that was strictly Pisa excursion. It was a combination of Florence and Pisa.
We did take Celebrity's transportation at $15/person roundtrip to the Livorno train station. There was another less expensive option of $5/person roundtrip to Livorno Centrale where you would need to take the bus to the train station.
Had I known it was that easy to get to the train station from Centrale then I would of went with the lesser option.
From Livorno train station, my wife and I took the regional train to Pisa which was only 20 minutes and cost only 10 Euros for the 2 of us. We then took the Lama Rossa bus in front of the NH Cavalier hotel. Bus was 2.50 Euros each way per person. Best to get return bus tickets at the news stand at the Pisa Centrale station.
Seeing the Leaning Tower of Pisa was good if you never seen it before. Spent about a few hours and went pack to Pisa Centrale train station. My gosh. Warnign to those who are going to travel to Pisa on your own. We almost got on the wrong train to get back to Livorno because the board had said 'Livorno platform 5" When we went to Platform 5 it said to Firenze (Florence). Went back to the board and later it said Livorno platform 8. Went there and it said Zucca. Luckily we saw someone working there and asked how to get back to Livorno. I forgot the end of the line of this one train but luckily we asked. It started with a "P". Sorry this is no help.
If you try to do trips on your own, you will need to have patience and expect these kind of situations to occur but that's what making travelling great. It's all about the experience.
We did get back to Livorno Centrale train station early so we decided to take bus No. 1 to Livorno Centrale. Some shops were not open until about 4pm on Sundays FYI. Not a big shopping area. Spent about 2 hrs there and caught the bus back to Livorno train station to meet up with our Celebrity bus to head back to the ship.
I gave the port of Genoa a 5 because of how beautiful the port was. This is a personal opinion. We didn't know what to expect. It was nice to walk around the town and up the hill and went to the shopping distract. Saw the Piazza Ferrari.
Found an Information office not purposely but he's advised us to go to the top of the hill and see the panaramic view of Genoa. It was only 2 euros or something like that. Museums seems to be closed on Mondays but we were not told by the cruiseline. Not sure if they knew or not. Probably not. I would had like to see the Aquarium that Genoa is known for but was tired by the time we returned from our day out walking around town.
It was nice to see the city of Genoa from the ship.It looked like very picturesque.
The actually port that we stopped in was Toulouse not Marseille. I could not find this option in the drop down box. Marseille is only about 1.5hrs away by train from Toulose. It was windy we we docked.
We had to purchase from Celebrity a boat transportation to bet to the other side of Toulose. It costed $15/person roundtrip.
I wanted to take the bus to the Cable Car and go up to Mount Faron but it is closed from November to February as I was told by the guy from the Information desk. You can still go by taxi but you can not go on the cable car. We just walked around town and along the water. Next time I will make my way to Marseilee or Nice.
When we got off the ship we went looking for the information office again. They recommended that we take the tram up to La Laguna. Cost for the tram was only 2 Euros each way per person. The tram takes 30 minutes to go up to the end of the line which ends up in the town of La Laguna, formerly the capital of Tenerife.
It was a nice unique town to walk around. That was all we did. We had lunch there and and then decided to take the tram back down to the port.
This was our last port before spending 7 days at sea crossing the Atlantic.