First time cruisers enj: On February 20th we embarked on an eastern Med cruise aboard the Costa Pacifica which first sailed in the summer of 2009. We were two of approximately 400 English speaking guests with French and Italian guests being the most numerous. Announcements came in English, French, Italian, German and Spanish. The staff was courteous and very helpful.
Our interior room was very efficient and roomy. We toured a oceanview and saw a balcony but we were very happy with our interior. The two main dining rooms were dazzling. We enjoyed each and every evening meal. The buffet areas were large and always filled with something to eat. We tried out a few shows but Vegas styled shows are not our thing. The ship offered many activities, especially on non-port days so the time flew by.
We did most of our own excursions (DIY) but the two ship excursions we took were typical large bus types with a lot of time wasted waiting for people. Also, we had to endure the "sales pitch" that so often is included with a ship excursion (on the Ephesus excursion they took us to a carpet store and everyone was very bored).
A storm on the seas caused us to be late docking back at Civie and I was amazed at the level of support and help given to travelers by Costa. They tried their best to help out the passengers. The only warning I can give to American tourists is simply this...it's an European cruise so don't expect steaks and potatoes on the menu. The food in both the main dining rooms and the buffet area is typical European with a lot of seafood and lamb. Plus, don't get put off as an American when the announcements are hard to sometimes understand. If you miss an announcement, just ask a crew member and they will help you.