This was my second cruise ever and my first with Celebrity. If this cruise was any indication of how Celebrity treats it's guests, I will definately be going back for more!Embarkation: While the entrance was a bit congested and busy, the entire process was efficient and took less than 20 minutes (most of it simply waiting in line). Make sure you print your express pass and have it filled out before arriving. It saves a little bit of time.The Solstice: What can I say? Just gorgeous. The decor is understated and elegant. No gaudy, Las Vegas-style glitz. Make sure you take some time to view the beautiful works of art throughout the ship. I wasn't impressed with the Lawn Club. Seems that space could be better used for another pool.Cabin: Good size, extremely clean, plenty of storage. I booked Concierge Class and was welcomed with champagne, fresh fruit, flowers and canapes. I was also provided with a lovely bathrobe and a set of binoculars (nice touch!). Entertainment: With the exception of a few individual entertainers and the Solstice Cirque de Soeil-type show, it was just OK. It was nice to wander around the ship at various times of the day or night and find music being performed. Dining: Oceanview was never a disappointment with a wide variety to choose from. AquaSpa Cafe was a great alternative to heavier breakfast and lunch. Grand Epernay was quite good. Everyone at the table received warm-to-hot food. At the request of one of my dinner companions, the chef even prepared a special dessert for our table. All-in-all, a very good dining experience.Spa: I made use of the acupuncturist onboard for an on-going problem with leg pain. I have been to 5 different specialists for this problem and no one was able to help me. With three sessions, I am now happy to report that I am pain-free! The acupuncturist went way above-and-beyond to help me.Fitness Center: A little disappointing. This place was always busy and sometimes there was not a treadmill or eliptical machine available. The classes are limited and many are fee-based. Shore Excursions: I booked all my tours through the ship and was never disappointed. Unlike some passengers who booked private tours, I had consistently good guides and never had to worry about going from place to place. Again, Celebrity was very efficient and the costs were actually comparable to what others paid for their private tours.All-in-all, I had a wonderful experience.
Cabin was quite far from the elevator and it was necessary to use the elevator to go anywhere on the ship. I certainly got alot of walking in!
Congested and dirty, like most large cities. The Acropolis was challenging due to the heat and the crowds and I couldn't wait to get out of there. Another alternative might be Zeus' Temple or Ancient Agora, which I did not have time to explore.
This port was lots of fun and a place you can visit without a tour guide. There are buses to the major beaches (you have to make your way through the cobble-pathways to the far side of the town. Paradise Beach was quite nice. Shopping is a bit pricier here but the selections were a little more upscale.
Unlike everyone else, I did not go to Epheseus. Instead, I wandered around the bazaar and found a Turkish bath. Both of these activities provided me with some great stories! Beware that sales people are extremely skilled at manipualtion. Just be ready to stand firm and don't get too agitated by their persistance. The hamam I found for my Turkish bath was tucked inside a quiet side street and recommended by a local woman. I highly recommend this experience. I found it relaxing, fun and very inexpensive. A spa expereince for under $20US.
The best port on this trip by far! I took the cable car to the top, then began to hike the footpath from Fira to Oia. The path wound through several villages and then to more isolated areas that provided spectacular views all along the way. For those less inclined, there is a bus service. Oia is a beautiful town and less crowded than Fira. Make the trip, it's worth it!
Went into Old Town and stolled around admiring the beauty and history. The Archeological Museum was a welcomed break from the varoius shops and restaurants.
Very disappointed with Naples. It was very dirty and I never felt quite as safe as in other ports. I hiked Mt. Vesuvius and was shocked at the amount of litter alongside the mountain road. The view of the coastline from the summit would have been spectacular if the smog didn't blanket the shore. Pompeii was well worth the visit. Make sure you wear shoes, not sandals, as it is very dry and dusty.