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Home > Member Reviews > sthelder's Port Reviews of Marseille, Barcelona, Tunis (La Goulette), Rome (Civitavecchia)

sthelder's Port Reviews of Marseille, Barcelona, Tunis (La Goulette), Rome (Civitavecchia)
MSC Splendida cruise in April 2013
Member Name: sthelder
Cruise Date: April 2013
Embarkation: Genoa
Destination: Western Mediterranean
Member Review: sthelder's MSC Splendida Review
Port Rating: 5.0 out of 5+
We took cab (outside cruise terminal, by meter) to St-Charles station and take bus #50 to Aix-en-Provence.

We chanced into a band parade in Aix-en-Provence as it's the last day of 2013 Festival de Pques d'Aix-en-Provence. We also went to local markets and Cathedral. Slightly disappointing that we did not find the local flower market as mentioned in Aix official tourism website, as it was more like an old book flea market. May be it's still too early in the year?

After getting back to Marseille, we took metro (train interval was somewhat slowish at 10min apart) to old port in Marseille and chose to use petit train route 1 to Notre-Dame. After that we took cab back to cruise terminal.

Both places are nice to visit, may be even better if it's during the lavender season in Aix.

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Port Rating: 5.0 out of 5+
We used port shuttle bus to get to Columbus monument and then metro to Sagrada Familia (must book ticket on-line, as a guide, we used 50min to get from ship to Sagrada).

After about two hours plus, we took metro to Casa Milla, had tapas lunch nearby. Followed that with walking and shopping along La Rambla, and back to the shuttle bus stop.

Both Sagrada Familia and La Rambla are highly recommended.

Pleasantly surprised that the ship docked for an extra hour in Barcelona than what was originally stated in our cruise ticket. We might have go to Parc Guell if we knew it earlier (only found out the night before from the daily program).

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Tunis (La Goulette)
Port Rating: 4.0 out of 5+
Before Tunis, we also visited Valencia, a nice port city to visit! Too bad, cruisecritic doesn't list it in the port of call.

We shared taxi with our mates, Tunis port has organized taxi operations right outside the terminal (price is fixed and payable back at the terminal).

Our driver wanted to bring us to more places for more $, we just told him that we didn't have the time and rejected. But we did give him extra as he advised us on museum opening times (problem being ship docked too early, it's only 7:30am local time then). The standard price was 70 euro (6 pax taxi, Sidi+Carriage+Bardo museum). Hence, we took the advice and went to Sidi Bou Said first. It's like Santorini-lite, and must haggle for price if you ever want to buy anything from the many street vendors.

Carthage wasn't great if you don't have a guide to introduce the ruins.

Bardo was a nice surprise, as it has many many beautiful mosaics, and highly recommended! If I ever go back again, I would learn some French, change dinars with our driver (Bardo museum entrance fee is 11/adult and the money changer there don't take Euro coins, so we ended up with spare dinars) and pay 1 dinar to take photos.

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Rome (Civitavecchia)
Port Rating: 5.0 out of 5+
How to get to Rome from Civitavecchia and its many interesting places are already well documented elsewhere.

So I would just mention that we were stuck at Termini station for over 40min because of some kind of local train worker strike that day. I believe Costa Pacifica might have delayed its departure time because of this too (it docked right behind our balcony and only left about 45min later than its advertised departure time). So do build in extra time allowance if you are not using ship excursions.

We went to Spagna, Fontana de Trevi, Piazza Veneiza and Colosseo. All easily walkable with prior homework.

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