Dubrovnik - we had been here several times before and had no need for an excursion. The ship's shuttle was again €10 for the 3 mile journey to the old walled city. We opted to walk in (1 hour) and it was hillier than we remembered! There are also local buses running from outside the dock gate, but you need local Croatian Kronas for the fare. The old medieval city is as clean and picturesque as ever, but the prices are much higher than we recalled (progress!). They now charge €10 to walk around the walls. Having done it when it was free we declined on this occasion! Shopping in the old city is mainly tourist merchandise, bars and restaurants. We found we got better prices and more choice from the souvenir stalls back at the cruise port.
Venice - this was both the starting point and end to our cruise. So much has been written about this city that I can add nothing to its reported splendour, so I will limit myself to the logistics of getting in and out of the city. We had time to visit the city before our evening flight home. MSC offer various tour and airport transfer options, but as we already had a transfer arranged we did not want to pay for this twice. So as soon as we were allowed to disembark we put our baggage in the Left Luggage room (€4 per bag) adjacent to the MSC terminal and walked round to the stop for the water buses. The trip along the Guidecca Canal to St Marks Square takes about 30 mins and is rather exorbitant (€8 pp single) and as we had already cruised up this canal aboard the Magnifica it offered us no new experience. So after our time mooching around the old city we walked back to the Piazza Roma 'People Carrier' station (under an hour) for the one stop (2 minutes) journey by driverless monorail toVenice Maritima to collect our bags and take our transfer bus to the airport.