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Home > Member Reviews > Arizona Budgies's Port Reviews of Cannes, Florence (Livorno), Rome (Civitavecchia), Naples, Venice, Split

Arizona Budgies's Port Reviews of Cannes, Florence (Livorno), Rome (Civitavecchia), Naples, Venice, Split
Serenade of the Seas cruise in October 2012
Member Name: Arizona Budgies
Cruise Date: October 2012
Embarkation: Barcelona
Destination: Western Mediterranean
Member Review: Arizona Budgies's Serenade of the Seas Review
Cannes
Port Rating: 3.0 out of 5+
Tender into Cannes, sunny and warm, Tuesday the 16th, walked around the city, did some back streets, 2 hours then tendered back to the Serenade.

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Florence (Livorno)
Port Rating: 5.0 out of 5+
The Florence access was via Livorno. We booked "Florence on our Own" with Cruising Excursions.com. They provided transport only from Livorno to Florence and back for 35 British Pounds ($113.00 USD for 2). We left the port at 818am in a small van with 1 other Irish couple, arriving Florence at 930am. We toured several of the many beautiful sites, lunched there and were met by the guide at 4pm - another minibus ride back to the port arriving at 515pm. We felt Florence was doable on our own and it was one our favorite stops. Became crowded and warm by late afternoon. On the return approximately 10 couples in the minivan. Would recommend this vendor for price and service, no problem or complaint.
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Rome (Civitavecchia)
Port Rating: 4.0 out of 5+
Thursday, 10-18. Of course access to Rome via Civitavecchia. We did take an excursion with a independent operator: SmartCruiseTours.com (Civita Tours). They met us at the dock, 3 other couples in a minivan plus driver. We left the port at 915am, arriving Rome at 1020am. Cost was 68E each, 13E in advance and 55E each cash to the driver. The driver took us to the various sights of Rome, we would have free time at each, though not enough time to go inside, for example the line at St. Peters had to be in the thousands!! We felt he hit the high spots and driving in that huge city had to be done by an expert, too large to do on your own, so much traffic, so many people. All the sights were loaded with tourists and this is the off season (as we were told). He recommended a lunch place also. We left Rome at 400pm arriving the port at 510pm. Was nice to be in a small van with only 8 people and the driver. NOTE: watch your liquid intake, public bathrooms (WC) are few and far between and the clean ones are 1.5E each, when you can find them. We would recommend this tour operator as well, no complaint, no problems; total cost was approximately $100 each, still lower than RC offered for a similar tour experience.

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Naples
Port Rating: 4.0 out of 5+
Friday, 10-19, NOTE: We docked in Salerno and chose to go to Pompeii not Naples. Three of our dining couples joined and we walked to the bus/train station in town (5 mins from the port), took bus #50 to the Pompeii ruins. The bus dropped us right at the entrance, 11E each entrance fee, and it took 1 hour travel time. We chose to take the Italian train service back to the port as it was faster, however, walking to the train station was a 15 min walk from the site entrance and it was warm this day. The bus and train both were later than scheduled, though frequent in running plan on lateness. The train took 40 mins to return to town. Total cost 2 round trips, 8.4E, so 20.4E for admits and transportation for two people, Pompeii was amazing but very sunny and warm.

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Venice
Port Rating: 5.0 out of 5+
Sunday/Monday, 10/21--22. We cruised into Venice in a fog and was so nice and cool, in the 60s. Boat docked at 10am, we walked 10 mins to the people mover from the port and for 1E each rode to Piazza Roma nearby. You can also walk to the P. Roma in 25 mins time for free. Walked to the Rialto bridge area and back, about 1/2 of the city, till we could walk no more, then back to the people mover and 10 mins back to the ship. Monday the 22nd; early start - walked entire way to P. Roma, then took vaparetto for 7E each to St. Marks plaza. Got there at 930am, in time for the 945am opening. We snaked through the church and then moved on to S. Zaccaria church, very beautiful, much less crowded. The St. Marks square again was packed with tourists and lines. From S. Zaccaria we walked back to P. Roma through various back streets and alleys enjoying every turn, walked till we could walk no more, so much to see and take in. Again a caution, limit your liquid intake, very few WC's. This was our favorite port, nothing like it but expect crowds and more crowds.

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Split
Port Rating: 4.0 out of 5+
NOTE: This review will be for 2 ports, Ravenna, Italy on 10/23 and Split Croatia on 10/24.

Split--The boat docked at Ravenna, nothing around, no way to get into the city execept via RC shuttle at $14 each round trip, so we opted for that. A good move - this city features the mosaic look of the 4th and 5th centuries, so impressive and the museum sell a combo ticket to 5 sites for 9.5E each, we did all 5 sites, close for walking, then the shuttle back to the port. It was the RC transport or a cab and is a 20 minute bus ride into town, nothing at the port. Is worth seeing, we considered not leaving the ship.

Split, Croatia on 10/24 - Tender to Split - near the port is the Diocletian palace, this is a huge palace and is like a huge shopping mall within an ancient ruin, never have seen anything like this, including a huge farmers market. So much to see - note - Croatia has it's own currency the Kuna (1 kuna is 17 cents), very interesting to see. Split reminded us of Cannes, France, sunny and warm, very scenic.

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