First the good... Embarkation was very easy. The service was great, from the fantastic cabin steward to the pleasant waitstaff in the restaurants to the helpful English-speaking hospitality person. The local tour guides were very good. The excursions are a little expensive, but overall were very good. The food in the sit-down restaurants was excellent. The ports were absolutely beautiful. The cabins were small but always very clean. The frozen drinks were good but a bit pricey.
The bad... The tours were very early in the morning. Also, we didn't have much time in each port.
The pool area was a disaster. There were only two small outdoor pools and four small hot tubs. There were never any chairs and the area was always a mess. The kids overran the pool area. There were rules at the pool but they were never enforced, such as you couldn't reserve chairs and kids weren't allowed in the hot More
tub, but people would leave their stuff on chairs and leave for hours. Also, there were babies in the hot tub.
The buffet was equally as bad. They had the same food everyday, very few vegetarian options and the labels on the food weren't accurate. The buffet was always packed and people cut the line and pushed and shoved and took huge portions so there was no food for the rest of us. There was never anywhere to sit. The only good food was the ice cream, but the machines were always broken or empty because people hogged them and there weren't enough machines.
The other cruisers- The other cruisers were rude, pushy, cut lines and hogged the food. It seemed like parents decided they were on vacation from being parents as all of the children were unruly, screaming, splashing, cutting lines, pushing, etc. My mom saw one child lying on the floor of the restaurant and the parents didn't do anything about it.
The website description is also inaccurate. It said there was an all day ice cream bar, which didn't exist and an all day pizzeria, but the pizzeria was only open in the evenings.
Recommendations- -Get a cabin with a balcony -Do the Frasassi Caves tour in Ancona - they are amazing! -Do sit-down meals whenever possible -If you drink a lot of water, get the water plan. There is never free water available on the ship except at meals.
Things to be aware of- Most cruisers are European and not English-speaking so announcements take forever because they are made in a variety of languages and excursions may get cancelled because there are not enough English-speaking guests. There is not a lot of nightlife for 30-somethings. Most entertainment was geared towards kids or retirees. Less
Athens itself is amazing but the downtown is about 1/2 hour from the port and the tour is very long. Also, beware - it is extremely hot and crowded in the summer with no shade. Definitely do a tour of the Acropolis and Plaka.
This port was amazing! We did the tour along the walls of the city and loved it but if you have trouble walking or are afraid of heights, I wouldn't recommend it. You can also skip an excursion and just tender into port and the main town is right there if you want to wander on your own.
loved it! The tender puts you in the main town so it is very easy to walk around on your own. The beaches are beautiful too but you need to take a taxi or do an excursion to get to the really good ones. I definitely recommend eating there. The food is fantastic especially if you love seafood.
Santorini is gorgeous. We took the Shades of Blue and White tour and loved it. I hear Oia is good as well. You can do the main town on your own but it takes some time to tender and get up to the main city by cable car.