Rotterdam Cruise Review by girl39: Nice Cruising Experience
Overall Member Rating
Nice Cruising Experience
Embarkation: Athens (Piraeus)
The Rotterdam is an older ship, but still very enjoyable. Great walking deck. Experienced staff. We were present for opening night of two awesome shows being presented for the first time. All new costumes, choreography and music. Of a caliber that we would have paid for to see on the outside. Great gym manager. Very dedicated. Captain errs on the cautious side and is good at explaining his decisions. We aborted 3 ports of call due to unsafe conditions. We spent 31 days hitting ports of call in Turkey, Greece, Malta, Israel, Italy, Spain and Portugal, combining 3 segments that started in Athens and ended in Harwich, England. Only downside was having to stand through 3 fire drills as new people came onboard.
The ports in Turkey opened our eyes to the vast antiquity residing there. This is where much of what we regard as Greek history took place because the Greeks colonized what is now the Turkish coast. We found the ship tours to be a cut about average. The ones we took were More run by Sea Song. Don't know if that made the difference or if visiting Turkey did, but we have no complaints.
Would probably not go to Spain or Portugal on a cruise ship again. We had been to Gibraltar before, so it was almost boring this time. Cartagena is a non-event. Cadiz was enjoyable, but once is enough. One day in Lisbon is plenty. Less
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Our cabin was main deck, port side. We had no complaints. Smooth sailing in stormy weather. Close to the elevator
Port and Shore Excursions
Found a line of minvans outside the terminal. Jumped in one and waited until the van was full. We hit all the highlights between Limassol and Paphos that would have been hit on multiple ship tours. Enjoyed a local lunch on the water while others in our van toured the mosaics. Great day. I believe the van cost 20 euros each.
We had to be back on board at 3PM so decided to go to Tarquinia. We had signed up for a ship tour, but it was cancelled due to lack of sign ups at the last minute. This proved to be propitious. Taxi driver Michael did not speak English well, but after some back and forth he realized we wanted to go to Tarquinia and not Rome. We arranged a fee of 100 euros I think it was. Our first stop on the way to his cab was an almost hidden espresso bar where we had wonderful cappachinos. On the way to Tarquinia he pointed out the island where the Costa Concordia ran aground. When we got to Tarquinia he directed us to the ancient city walls and waited for us by the Museum. To get there we walked though a street market. We grabbed another coffee with Michael and then hit the museum for 2 hours. Michael then drove us through the old town and then over to the Necropolis where we spent an hour. After that we had a splendid Italian lunch at a restaurant he pointed us to (Piazza D'Erba) and then we went back to Civitavecchia. Michael had a pass, so was able to drop us directly at the ship. Wonderful and memorable day.
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