My wife and I live in the north west of England. Our departure port was Barcelona and we decided to book just the cruise with Royal Caribbean and to arrange our air travel independently. This proved to be a very good idea as we arrived a day earlier in Barcelona and had pre-booked a hotel Room in the Hotel Aneta, just off Las Ramblas. The hotel was very basic but clean and even included a complimentary (basic) breakfast. Apart from the advantages of having more time to look round Barcelona, and being able to get to the ship nice and early we still managed to save around £100 on the Cruise/flight deal quoted by RC.
We had booked a guaranteed stateroom and to our delight were allocated cabin 6502 located at the front of the ship, underneath the bridge, facing forward and looking down over the front of the ship and out to sea.
November isn't the best time of year to cruise the Med; the weather could have been a great deal better. At times the sea was quite rough which sadly meant our trip to Florence was cancelled as the captain said it was too dangerous to dock in the port of Livorno. Another cancellation was the ship's arrival in Marseille, this time the reason was that the Sirocco wind was due about the time we were scheduled to leave Marseille and the captain thought it would be too dangerous exiting the port. Why Marseille was listed as a port of call is a mystery to me especially as at this time of year the Sirocco wind is quite a common occurrence. Anyway instead of Marseille we docked in Toulon.
We were very grateful that the ship was so big, given the size of the seas we encountered especially on our last night. The ship is fantastic, as are most of RC's fleet, although older than Independence of the Seas our previous cruise ship, it is still very modern and clean. The food in the main dining room is very good but it must be said that it was nowhere near as fantastic as our first experience on the Empress of the Seas in the Caribbean some 2 years earlier.
On disembarking in Barcelona we booked our only RC excursion of the trip, to Montserrat. It was a very enjoyable trip and as a bonus they actually dropped our luggage and us at the airport after the trip
Would we book another Med Cruise in November? It would have to be at a bargain price as the weather very unpredictable at that time of year