Started our holiday 1 day early by staying overnight in hotel at Southampton which relieved stress driving down on day. Boarding was a doddle luggage taken off us and car driven away leaving us with just carry on.There was a slight delay in boarding owing to trouble with air bridge but this was minimal.Found boarding simple. Went to our cabin to await luggage which arrived about 2pm.Unpacked, plenty of space and hangers cabin was well appointed towels etc good quality, beds large a bit hard but comfortable enough. Off up top for sail-away had cocktail while slipping away down solent.
We were 2nd sitting in Bottocelli.Dining was a pleasure with our two waiters Dennis & violetta, choice was varied and catered for all tastes found the soups to be excellent main coures sometimes bit fussy with sauces but on whole good.
Settled down for our cruise to first port Cadiz. Did not do much for first two days just used it to chill and find way around used Horizon for lunch More
always good selection, had breakfast in room after 1st day as it was bit crowded at that time of day.Arrived Cadiz had excursion to Sevilla, then off to malta(or so we thought) in the night we hit a force9/10 with 12ft waves we were on deck 9 and some of the wave spray hit our balcony door,about 4.30am huge thump heard captain calling for containment teams,the thump was a rogue wave hitting the ship and breaking two of the windows on deck 5 in the interational cafe allowing some seawater in. The captain had to go off course heading for north African coast while crew did superb job of fitting metal plates to broken windows cafe out of action for most of day while clean-up and fitting of new carpets carried out.
Storm carried on for next two days and was too rough to enter Valleta(which was my main reason for booking this cruise0 so headed straight to Venice so of first 7 days spent 6 at sea which was bit boring as some of the time captains advice to stay in cabin and all outside decks were out of bounds once we rounded heel of Italy things calmed down and entered Venice the evening before we were due found Venice ok but there were tatty street traders in St Marks Square and bridges adourned with advertising banners, totally out of place.Then Split Dubrovnik and Corfu. Split very clean and interesting as was Dubrovnik.Corfu did not get much chance to see as it poured with rain all day. then to Gib another two days at sea. Gib was best port of call.
On sea days we did take part in quizzes,video horse racing and occaisional bingo, Pub lunches were excellent.My wife found the Library very good too.Did not use Spa etc as expensive($20 just to sit in Sanctuary)Evenings were spent after dinner in casino or the one5 nightclub which was very good. Main dislikes were photographers, wheelchairs & zimmer frames with wheels they thought the lifts were there for their private use pushing in front to get on and sometimes one wheelchair filled lift,on rough days people with sticks had difficulty getting around.The main concern with all these wheelchairs zimmers etc was if we had to board Lifeboats for real at Split these were used at tenders and it took 15 minutes to get everyone on.I say might do it again but you are at the mercy of weather to get into ports so if you want to go somewhere specific you take a chance. Less
Grand Princess Cruises to the Eastern Mediterranean
D608 is a mini suite and well appointed plenty of hanging space, bathroom was good although bath bit small but did the job, towels were good quality and good range of toiletries, shower was always hot and pressure was ok.Having a sette was a bonus. Fridge was good enough size two tv`s balcony bit small but adequate for two people with 2 loungers & 2 chairs Overall very good
Found Gib to be best place of our cruise.Took the cable car to top of rock fantastic views and of course the apes also visited Trafalgar cemetery. Main Street is the main shopping area full of shops of differing goods at good prices best place for duty free shopping again not long enough, good place for a 3/4 day break though. Weather for October was excellent in high 70`s
Seville was a very clean city with quite a bit to see and some excellent pavement cafes the only problem was not enough time to get round as we arrived at 9.30am and had to catch coach back at 1.30pm but is well worth visit
Used the people mover(an unmanned train)to get from cruise terminal (1Euro) to plazaa the main bus and waterbus terminal caught the Vaporeta to St Marks this takes you around the Grand Canal so if you dont want to spend 100 Euros on gondola you can see Venice from the water for6.5Euros. St Marks square was crowded and had street traders selling rubbish but worth a visit, found a lovely little street cafe out of main area which was reasonably priced.