The port was switched from Kusadasi to Izmir a few weeks before the departure, resulting in our being much further away from Ephesus. We had booked a tour with Ephesus Deluxe and were able to change the port. The communication with this company was very good but, unfortunately, the guide we were assigned was very disappointing. She had neither personality nor an adequate knowledge of the sight. I cannot recommend this company due to its selection of the guide. What should have been a highlight of the trip turned into a "lowlight".
Cyprus is very scenic and worth exploring. We took a taxi tour with Taxi of Cyprus. The driver was George. We liked him, but his English was somewhat limited. He drove us all over the area, stopping at places of interest. We went a long distance to Paphos and Omodos. I would recommend skipping Paphos, which turned out to be a larger city than anticipated and going to Omodos and some other areas.
As already noted, we arrived in Haifa on the Sabbath, so many of the Jewish sights were closed. Our tour with Guided Tours Israel took us through northern Israel and Haifa. Given the limitations, it was an enjoyable tour with a personable guide. Oceania's scheduling was not optimal.
We docked in Ashdod for 2 days. For the first day, we took O.'s shorex to Caesarea, Tel Aviv and Jaffa which is discussed above. On the second day, we took GTI's Jewish oriented tour of Jerusalem. First, we visited Yad Vashem and then Jerusalem. This tour disappointed because it was very rushed after Yad Vashem and did not give us a good overview of the old city. We had the feeling that many things were omitted, in the interest of adhering to a tight schedule. We did get to visit the Western Wall tunnels but in doing so, eliminated other important sights. Overall, I cannot recommnd GTI's Jerusalem tour.
We took an excellent taxi tour to the beautiful, mountain village of Makrinitsa. It was arranged by Volos VIP Taxi, with a very nice young man, Christos, as the driver. This was an enjoyable respire from more intensive touring.