Having read a number of reviews we were a little worried about our trip on Splendour of the Seas but having returned I was wondering if I had been reading about a different ship. We did the Greek Isles and Turkey cruise with a selection of excellent stops.
We booked our own flights to Venice from Dublin and thankfully had done a bit of research on how to go from the airport to Venice then onto the terminal. We took the bus at ï¿½5 each to the Plaza Roma then put our luggage into the left luggage in the square which is beside the people mover as we were there very early.
We had read there was a transfer bus but couldn't find it. We used the "People Mover" which is a tram system from the square to the terminal. One piece of advice is to push your luggage under the barrier before you scan your ticket (ï¿½1) as the barrier closes very quickly. When we got off at the other end there was a Royal Caribbean courtesy bus to take us the short distance to the ship. We walked it on the way back to the people mover and it only took six minutes.
Once on board we were surprised how nice it was and how friendly the crew were. We had booked an outside state room with a drop down Pullman bed for our daughter which I could have comfortably slept in. We went for a walk around the ship and could see very little wrong with the ship apart from some of the chairs etc and I mean very few which had seen better days.
Going out of Venice was lovely as you move so slowly to the open sea and from then until the end it was a fantastic holiday. I think Kotor in Montengro was my favourite port as it was so scenic and friendly. The only port we used an organised trip was Athens as there was a taxi strike but everywhere else we did our own thing at a fraction of the cost of the RCL trips.
The onboard entertainment was very good but don't be expecting a Broadway show. They also filmed some of the shows which you were able to watch on your cabin TV. The food was of a very high standard as was the service. We went for the 6.30pm sitting which was ideal and although there were supposed to be three formal nights it wasn't rigidly enforced.
The buffet style dining in the Windjammer was also very good and we used it one night when we decided not to use the King & I dining room. If you were up early enough you could also get breakfast in the main dining room when you got tea, coffee etc served at the table.
As I said before it was a brilliant holiday but one of my main complaints would be the additional 15% which is added to every drink bought at the bar on prices which were already dear enough to start with. We also avoided buying of the wine list as they were quite expensive instead they did offers during the trip at the bars. You were allowed to buy these and take them to the dining room.
One other tip is if you dock at the new port in Mykonos and use the RCL bus they charge $10 return to the town but the local bus which stops right beside the ship is ï¿½3.20 return. Another plus point was that as we were getting an early flight back from Venice we were able to hold onto our luggage on the last night walked off ten minutes after we docked leaving us plenty of time to get to the airport.All in all a great holiday and would have no hesitation travelling with RCL again.