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Best 8 port itenerary!
Europe - Western Mediterranean
We chose the Jade because of the ports visited. The freestyle dining was ideal because of so many ports and never knowing when you would return from the tours and sightseeing or how tired you would be as far as your choice of dining. The times we dined in the main dining we had approximately 30 minute waits until the beeper went off but once seated we, again felt the service was slow and the food was mostly average. The buffet had a large selection with a pasta and asia station cooked on the spot and because of no waits we ate there many nights. My favorite would be The Bistro which was french dining for an additional $15 per couple but was well worth the price and service.
We stayed on the 11th floor in a mini suite which was very nice. It had a nice balcony, small refrigerator, coffee maker, desk area, couch and a bathtub with shower. It also had nice warm bathrobes which came in handy on the balcony. Room service and the room stewart were very efficient. The ship was very More
nice and had plenty of choices for lounges, activities, nice casino (I won over $8,000 on the penny machine!!)art shows, spa,pool table, sports bar, etc. It was too chilly to use the pool area but we stayed so busy with the ports, etc that we would not have had much time anyway. Getting on and off the boat was fast and easy. We did not attend all the shows but the ones we attended were average for ship entertainment. Less
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Port and Shore Excursions
Again, this tour was arranged by recommendations from the internet and turned out fantasic. Our guide took us to as many important sights as we had time to visit. We did the Acropolis, Prime Minister's house and the changing of the guards, Temple of Olympian Zesus, National Archaeological Museum, Tower of Winds, Athens Olympic Sport Complex. We had a wonderful lunch and some time to shop at Plaka.
This was one of my favorite ports. The town and views are beautiful and the Medievel city is exciting. Our tour took us all through the countryside, a stop at a small fishing village for a wonderful seafood lunch. The great wall is the second largest. I believe that this town will eventually be a top tourist vacation place!
I loved Istanbul. We stayed in the historic area prior to boarding the ship for several nights. The Grand Bazaar and Spice Market were very interesting and a must see. Don't miss the Blue Mosque, Sophia Hague, etc. The people of Istanbul were very friendly and kind. The food in the historic area was very good and it was fun to actually see what you were ordering. It rained our two nights there but we still enjoyed it and my favorite thing was the "calling to prayer" that sounded through the city every few hours.
We arrange for our tour off the Internet. We were greeted right on time and had only the four of us traveling in a mini bus with lots of room and a nice guide. We travelled to Ephesus in about one hour or so. This tour took in the last house the virgin Mary lived in and where she died and also the historic ruins of Ephesus. This is very educational and a must see at this port!
Our private tour included 8 people and we travelled to Pompeii with a special guide there-don't miss this tour. Then on to Sorrento and the Amalfi coast which is truly beautiful. We stopped, visited and ate in Positano which was fantastic. Our lunch cost approximately $25 per person but we ate on the coast line with beautiful views in a Mom and Pop restaurant that had no menus. They brought italian food out to our tables as to what they made that day. White and red wine were on the table and many courses followed that were all wonderful! We took the ferry from Sorrento back to Naples and our ship which gave us some extra sightseeing time.
Sailing into and out of Venice was breathtaking. It is such an exciting place. No cars, only boats for taxi. Walk and explore is the thing to do except when we were there it rained so bad that St. Mark's Square was completely under water with boards on blocks to walk on! A tour guide is not necessary here. You can hop on and off the boat taxis and walk around the town. I loved the shopping area around St. Marks Square and all the cafe styled restaurants-only wish we had dry weather to truly enjoy it.