This morning my Sister and her partner are somewhere in Barcelona excitedly awaiting their first ever cruise and they have chosen to join us on Regatta...they will not be disappointed! Barcelona: We were up at 6.00am, ship docks at 7.00am. Breakfast on the Terrace, great as usual, we appreciate the lack of lines and the smooth efficiency. We get a taxi(10E) to Praca de Espana FCG Station, we wanted to catch the 8.16 train (E20.90 for the Transmontserrat ticket) to Montserrat Aeri (cablecar) We arrive at the base at 9.20 first cable car is at 9.40, only five passengers. The cable car did not accept the train ticket pass therefore we had to pay an additional E5.00 each. The next station (monistrol de Montserrat is where the included funicular departs for the Monastery. Very pleasant visit - no crowds until we were ready to leave, when loads of school children start arriving. We are back in Barcelona by 1.00pm. Shopping and wandering along Ramblas. We meet up with my sister on the ship. They had just arrive and thought that our knock on their cabin door was someone bringing their luggage! Palma de Majorca: There is a shuttle bus from the dock, however, unlike on a previous cruise we are not dropped off near the Cathedral, but just outside the dock gates at a city bus stop. We stopped the first bus (#3) and asked if he went to the city centre, he did, it was about one euro each and we were downtown in 15 minutes. Walked around, saw the cathedral & cloisters, side walk cafe, people watched etc... then a taxi back to the ship (E12.00) Very pleasant early afternoon sailaway sitting on the terrace. Back to our room to discover that our tour to Arles from Marseilles tomorrow has been cancelled, a minor disappointment. The Tour desk was able to get us on to a similar trip to Avignon. Marseilles: We went on a ship's tour to Avignon. It was well organized we left at 8.30 from the Regatta Lounge and the bus parked in Avignon at 9.55. We toured the Pope's palace and were then free to walk around town and buy lunch. We purchased a picnic from a Fruiterer (cheeses, game pie, ratatouille(sp?)wine) and sat on the grass near the bus overlooking the pont at Avignon. We then drove to Le Beaux de Provence a great little, medieval hill town, busy but not overcrowded. We arrive back at the ship at 5.00pm. We had a lovely dinner in Toscana, Ruis the waiter was very friendly and attentive. Saint Tropez: This was a tender port, the tendering was quick and with hardly any line-ups and went very smoothly. We got off at a dock in the centre of the Marina. We walked up to the Citadel and were rewarded with fantastic views of the town and Regatta at anchor in the bay. We were back on board by 2.30 and we spent the afternoon on the pool deck sunbathing and taking a dip in the pool. We had dinner at Tapas with a backdrop of Saint Tropez harbour. The evenings entertainment was a medley of the entertainers singing...it was ok but not good. In fact we wandered up to Horizons after the show and came across a Karaoke event. This was funny to watch especially the slightly inebriated gentleman who gave a rendition of "Macho Man" The cruise entertainment staff ran this very well. There are definitely more people staying up later on this cruise than on our Transatlantic leg. Monte Carlo: Docked at the new jetty, there was a TI on the Dock. We had got off early and the cross harbour ferry boats were not yet running so we walked around the promenade and saw the preparations for the Grand Prix. We caught a bus to Eze along the middle corniche (E1.00). The Bus stops at Cremallaire, Find the TI above the Casino then go directly across the road and up a narrow steep street with steps and the bus stop is in front of you over the road at the top. Eze was fantastic. We left Eze and caught the same bus on to Nice. A great city and the antiques market down near the sea front was really interesting. We caught the train back to Monaco wandered around the Prince's Palace area, saw the cathedral and Maritime Museum and this left us on the clifftop above our ship. There are a series of paths and steps leading down to the dock. We had another great dinner on the Terrace overlooking the lights and harbour of Monte Carlo. I'm ready for a sea day!!! unfortunately there isn't one so we'll have to create a relaxed day in Portofino Portofino: Another Tender port...we took the local bus to Santa Margerita; one euro each way.Nice relaxing day, Portofino was relaxed and we had coffee under canopies on the harbour front while we waited for a heavy rain shower to ease. We got back to Regatta in time to enjoy afternoon tea in horizons. very calm and the waiters are very pleasant and efficient. We went for dinner at Polo. They were busy and service was a little slow, but it didn't spoil the wonderful food or the ambience of the room...elegant and relaxed. Livorno / Sienna and San Gimingano This was a busy, busy day with our first visit to Sienna...wow what a fantastic city. Lots of school children. Our tour guide explained that this time of year is when Italian children (approx 15yrs old) go on cultural trips to their main tourist sites ,this explained why we were seeing all these coaches full of children. We ate a sandwich sitting in the middle of the Campo. So much to see we will be going back. San Gimingano was great, well worth a visit. The tour was well run and the guide was friendly and helpful. We arrive back at the ship to find that our Butler (Mihai) had left us 2 pots of tea and some nibbles. Now that is great service and very thoughtful. We had been away from "home" for 11 hours and this was really welcoming. We wandered up to Tapas for a relaxed dinner. Olbia Sardinia A welcome relaxed day. The shuttle bus into town was easy, if a little crowded. The town was easy to navigate, prices are reasonable. Back on board at 12.30. Headed for the pool. It was very windy and big black clouds were racing across the sky. We sunbathed and cloudbathed by the pool developed goose bumps and to quote my sister "we're British and on holiday therefore we will suffer through this" at least we had no problem getting a sunbed!! (incidentally, we never had a problem getting a convenient sunbed in all the 22 days) We had a message from our son, there was 18" of snow in Calgary yesterday, this goes to prove bad weather is relative. Sorrento /Capri A lovely day. Jet foil to Capri. Bus to Anacapri. Chairlift to the summit. Ch San Michelle for the tiled floor. villa San Michelle. Eggplant pie and beer for lunch. Bus back to Capri Town, wandered around the narrow streets, soaked up the obvious affluence, window shopped along "rodeo drive", funicular back to Marina Grande and a Jetfoil back to Sorrento. Had another outdoor dinner on the terrace and then went back for an after dark stroll around Sorrento along the Via San Cesareo. The ship was scheduled to stay at anchor in Sorrento until 5.00 am the next morning but the Captain had made us very aware of the fact, before anyone tendered off the ship, that he was leaving at midnight. Amalfi / Positano Our last full day, we are fairly relaxed and go to the Grand Dining Room for a full breakfast, it was excellent. Tender ashore at 10.00am tender back at 10.15! a really heavy rain had swept in, umbrellas were turning inside out, we got our raincoats and went back to wander around town, saw the cathedral of St Andrew. Saw a few Oceania umbrellas in the garbage cans on the dock when we returned to the tender. Packing in our room during the afternoon then we had wine on our balcony as the Captain steered the Regatta close to shore for a fantastic sail-by of Positano. Another example of the ship and it's staff and crew taking care of their passengers. We had dinner in the GDR that evening...I don't know what caused the poor, rushed service. Maybe it was last night workload, but after 21 excellent dinners on board, we were left with a poor final impression. But...having said that we have booked two more cruises with Oceania. Disembarkation in Rome This whole event was flawless, the Captain and General Manager were on the dock shaking hands and saying farewell to all departing passengers. Just think there were some fortunate people staying on for a back-to-back. We took Oceania's bus to the airport it arrive at 8.30 a very comfortable time to make our scheduled flight time of 12.30 back to Calgary via Toronto. Summary We are going back to Oceania...the Cabin was quiet, service was excellent, amenities were good, the ship size was perfect the band played good dance music, the ship's condition was excellent, it was clean and well maintained. We really enjoyed this port intensive half of our back-to-back from Miami to Rome. The Transatlantic leg, however, was one long relax...I guess we've turned into sea-day cruisers. By the way, my Sister and partner were so pleased that they had chosen the Regatta to start cruising. My only warning to them was that they have to be careful going on other lines now that they have experienced the relaxed elegance of Oceania.

Tale of Two Cruises

Regatta Cruise Review by catandave

Trip Details
This morning my Sister and her partner are somewhere in Barcelona excitedly awaiting their first ever cruise and they have chosen to join us on Regatta...they will not be disappointed!
Barcelona: We were up at 6.00am, ship docks at 7.00am. Breakfast on the Terrace, great as usual, we appreciate the lack of lines and the smooth efficiency. We get a taxi(10E) to Praca de Espana FCG Station, we wanted to catch the 8.16 train (E20.90 for the Transmontserrat ticket) to Montserrat Aeri (cablecar) We arrive at the base at 9.20 first cable car is at 9.40, only five passengers. The cable car did not accept the train ticket pass therefore we had to pay an additional E5.00 each. The next station (monistrol de Montserrat is where the included funicular departs for the Monastery. Very pleasant visit - no crowds until we were ready to leave, when loads of school children start arriving. We are back in Barcelona by 1.00pm. Shopping and wandering along Ramblas. We meet up with my sister on the ship. They had just arrive and thought that our knock on their cabin door was someone bringing their luggage!
Palma de Majorca: There is a shuttle bus from the dock, however, unlike on a previous cruise we are not dropped off near the Cathedral, but just outside the dock gates at a city bus stop. We stopped the first bus (#3) and asked if he went to the city centre, he did, it was about one euro each and we were downtown in 15 minutes. Walked around, saw the cathedral & cloisters, side walk cafe, people watched etc... then a taxi back to the ship (E12.00) Very pleasant early afternoon sailaway sitting on the terrace. Back to our room to discover that our tour to Arles from Marseilles tomorrow has been cancelled, a minor disappointment. The Tour desk was able to get us on to a similar trip to Avignon.
Marseilles: We went on a ship's tour to Avignon. It was well organized we left at 8.30 from the Regatta Lounge and the bus parked in Avignon at 9.55. We toured the Pope's palace and were then free to walk around town and buy lunch. We purchased a picnic from a Fruiterer (cheeses, game pie, ratatouille(sp?)wine) and sat on the grass near the bus overlooking the pont at Avignon. We then drove to Le Beaux de Provence a great little, medieval hill town, busy but not overcrowded. We arrive back at the ship at 5.00pm. We had a lovely dinner in Toscana, Ruis the waiter was very friendly and attentive.
Saint Tropez: This was a tender port, the tendering was quick and with hardly any line-ups and went very smoothly. We got off at a dock in the centre of the Marina. We walked up to the Citadel and were rewarded with fantastic views of the town and Regatta at anchor in the bay. We were back on board by 2.30 and we spent the afternoon on the pool deck sunbathing and taking a dip in the pool. We had dinner at Tapas with a backdrop of Saint Tropez harbour. The evenings entertainment was a medley of the entertainers singing...it was ok but not good. In fact we wandered up to Horizons after the show and came across a Karaoke event. This was funny to watch especially the slightly inebriated gentleman who gave a rendition of "Macho Man" The cruise entertainment staff ran this very well. There are definitely more people staying up later on this cruise than on our Transatlantic leg. Monte Carlo: Docked at the new jetty, there was a TI on the Dock. We had got off early and the cross harbour ferry boats were not yet running so we walked around the promenade and saw the preparations for the Grand Prix. We caught a bus to Eze along the middle corniche (E1.00). The Bus stops at Cremallaire, Find the TI above the Casino then go directly across the road and up a narrow steep street with steps and the bus stop is in front of you over the road at the top. Eze was fantastic. We left Eze and caught the same bus on to Nice. A great city and the antiques market down near the sea front was really interesting. We caught the train back to Monaco wandered around the Prince's Palace area, saw the cathedral and Maritime Museum and this left us on the clifftop above our ship. There are a series of paths and steps leading down to the dock. We had another great dinner on the Terrace overlooking the lights and harbour of Monte Carlo.
I'm ready for a sea day!!! unfortunately there isn't one so we'll have to create a relaxed day in Portofino
Portofino: Another Tender port...we took the local bus to Santa Margerita; one euro each way.Nice relaxing day, Portofino was relaxed and we had coffee under canopies on the harbour front while we waited for a heavy rain shower to ease. We got back to Regatta in time to enjoy afternoon tea in horizons. very calm and the waiters are very pleasant and efficient. We went for dinner at Polo. They were busy and service was a little slow, but it didn't spoil the wonderful food or the ambience of the room...elegant and relaxed.
Livorno / Sienna and San Gimingano This was a busy, busy day with our first visit to Sienna...wow what a fantastic city. Lots of school children. Our tour guide explained that this time of year is when Italian children (approx 15yrs old) go on cultural trips to their main tourist sites ,this explained why we were seeing all these coaches full of children. We ate a sandwich sitting in the middle of the Campo. So much to see we will be going back. San Gimingano was great, well worth a visit. The tour was well run and the guide was friendly and helpful. We arrive back at the ship to find that our Butler (Mihai) had left us 2 pots of tea and some nibbles. Now that is great service and very thoughtful. We had been away from "home" for 11 hours and this was really welcoming. We wandered up to Tapas for a relaxed dinner.
Olbia Sardinia A welcome relaxed day. The shuttle bus into town was easy, if a little crowded. The town was easy to navigate, prices are reasonable. Back on board at 12.30. Headed for the pool. It was very windy and big black clouds were racing across the sky. We sunbathed and cloudbathed by the pool developed goose bumps and to quote my sister "we're British and on holiday therefore we will suffer through this" at least we had no problem getting a sunbed!! (incidentally, we never had a problem getting a convenient sunbed in all the 22 days) We had a message from our son, there was 18" of snow in Calgary yesterday, this goes to prove bad weather is relative. Sorrento /Capri A lovely day. Jet foil to Capri. Bus to Anacapri. Chairlift to the summit. Ch San Michelle for the tiled floor. villa San Michelle. Eggplant pie and beer for lunch. Bus back to Capri Town, wandered around the narrow streets, soaked up the obvious affluence, window shopped along "rodeo drive", funicular back to Marina Grande and a Jetfoil back to Sorrento. Had another outdoor dinner on the terrace and then went back for an after dark stroll around Sorrento along the Via San Cesareo. The ship was scheduled to stay at anchor in Sorrento until 5.00 am the next morning but the Captain had made us very aware of the fact, before anyone tendered off the ship, that he was leaving at midnight.
Amalfi / Positano Our last full day, we are fairly relaxed and go to the Grand Dining Room for a full breakfast, it was excellent. Tender ashore at 10.00am tender back at 10.15! a really heavy rain had swept in, umbrellas were turning inside out, we got our raincoats and went back to wander around town, saw the cathedral of St Andrew. Saw a few Oceania umbrellas in the garbage cans on the dock when we returned to the tender. Packing in our room during the afternoon then we had wine on our balcony as the Captain steered the Regatta close to shore for a fantastic sail-by of Positano. Another example of the ship and it's staff and crew taking care of their passengers. We had dinner in the GDR that evening...I don't know what caused the poor, rushed service. Maybe it was last night workload, but after 21 excellent dinners on board, we were left with a poor final impression. But...having said that we have booked two more cruises with Oceania.
Disembarkation in Rome This whole event was flawless, the Captain and General Manager were on the dock shaking hands and saying farewell to all departing passengers. Just think there were some fortunate people staying on for a back-to-back. We took Oceania's bus to the airport it arrive at 8.30 a very comfortable time to make our scheduled flight time of 12.30 back to Calgary via Toronto.
Summary We are going back to Oceania...the Cabin was quiet, service was excellent, amenities were good, the ship size was perfect the band played good dance music, the ship's condition was excellent, it was clean and well maintained.
We really enjoyed this port intensive half of our back-to-back from Miami to Rome. The Transatlantic leg, however, was one long relax...I guess we've turned into sea-day cruisers.
By the way, my Sister and partner were so pleased that they had chosen the Regatta to start cruising. My only warning to them was that they have to be careful going on other lines now that they have experienced the relaxed elegance of Oceania.
catandave’s Full Rating Summary
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