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Home > Member Reviews > jean stevenson's Port Reviews of Vigo, Lisbon, Tenerife, Madeira (Funchal), Santiago (Valparaiso)

jean stevenson's Port Reviews of Vigo, Lisbon, Tenerife, Madeira (Funchal), Santiago (Valparaiso)
Independence of the Seas cruise in October 2011
Member Name: jean stevenson
Cruise Date: October 2011
Embarkation: Southampton
Destination: Canary Islands
Member Review: jean stevenson's Independence of the Seas Review
Port Rating: 3.0 out of 5+
Vigo was our first port of call - nice enough place but not a lot to do - would suggest you take a trip out of town.

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Port Rating: 4.0 out of 5+
Loved Lisbon - we walked off the ship and along to Belem - about 40 min walk, to the Navigator monument and Belem Tower. Be warned the tower only has one spiral staircase up and down and got VERY congested and claustrophobic. We then got a taxi up to the castle for 8euro but it was ridiculously busy so we sat and had a coffee at one of the little cafes and then ambled into town. Unfortunately it was a sunday so most shops were shut but it was a nice walk and plenty of cafes open.
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Port Rating: 3.0 out of 5+
I can't really rate Tenerife as we stayed on board ship all day. It was our one day of brilliant sunshine so just decided to chill. However, friends of ours mentioned they walked off the ship - about 20 mins along a long jetty - and they found a lovely lagoon area with pools and sunbathing just beyond the port gates - again something not mentioned in the local info given on board. Do think this is something Independence needs to address - the lack of good local info for the benefit of the passengers.

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Madeira (Funchal)
Port Rating: 5.0 out of 5+
Funchal is stunning - very lush and green - luckily we were there in the sunshine, and had a lovely ride on the cable car up the mountain, with the sole aim of getting the tobaggon rides back down. Be aware the queues for the baskets to come back down are horrendous and we queued for about 1.5 hrs. Saying that it was great fun and I would recommend it. After that we got a taxi back into town, you can walk but it is ridiculously steep and we didn't have a great deal of time left. Town is very pretty, lots of cafes/shops/fruit and fish market etc. We took the shuttle bus from the port as it is about 1/2 hr walk into the main area and we didn't have a great deal of time, we set sail about 3pm i think. It would have been nice to have a longer visit there.

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Santiago (Valparaiso)
Port Rating: 5.0 out of 5+
We actually sailed into La Coruna and took the ships tour to Santiago. What a stunning place - the cathedral is beautifull and well worth the 45 min bus ride to get there. You can feel the history seeping out of the walls around you and is a lovely place to spend a few hours.

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