Nautica Round British Isles 9 - 21st September 17
This is our third Oceania cruise. Our first two were on Riviera, but we have cruised on Nautica before when she was Princess’ Royal Princess many years ago.
We are English and live around two hours’ drive from Southampton. We arrived at around 2.30 pm at the terminal. Check in was pretty straight forward as there were no guests waiting and we were soon on board and in the Terrace Cafe having a bite to eat. Our bags were waiting when we got to our stateroom at 3pm.
Stateroom small. Drawer space adequate. Bedside table too low and inaccessible . General lighting could be better. Bed and bedding suburb. Bathroom tiny but towels and accessories very nice. Robes and slippers provided. Everything kept very clean and neat by the housekeepers.
Embarkation port. We drove from our home to the port
We loved Newcastle. Took the shuttle to a Metro station and travelled to the city. After exploring the shops, we went on the Metro to South Shields a journey of about thirty minutes. Unfortunately when we got there the heavens opened and we were unable to go by ferry to North Shields where our ship was birthed and had to return on the Metro. Had a nice day there.
The ship docks at Leith. We visited the Royal Yacht Britannia which is a short walk away from the ship. Lovely exhibition. Well worth the visit. Our Queen is surprisingly frugal! Even the "grand" rooms where she entertained foreign dignitaries were not that grand.
We took a short shuttle bus trip to Edinburgh but ran out of time to see very much. Climbed up Carlton Hill and took in the view over the city then back to the ship on the shuttle.
Took a private tour to Stirling Castle and the Trossachs with Timberbush. Just 12 of us with an excellent driver/guide. It was a lovely day.
Visited the Titanic Museum. It is necessary to take a taxi to the exhibition. The building is breathtaking. The tour is quite arduous and noisy but very interesting. Recommend it. The Discovery tour is even better. Do it.
Disappointing. Went on shuttle to city. Traffic horrendous. Took a Hop on Hop Off bus but saw nothing that made us want to Hop Off!! Weather cold and windy, the worst weather of the whole cruise. Returned to the ship for lunch. Unfortunately the bus driver was having his lunch too, so when we got back to Nautica the main restaurants were closed. We had a hamburger in Waves. Not really my thing.
Lovely day. Wonderful autumn sun. The buildings are specular. The docks have been renovated and museums opened. The shopping streets are good. Best of all you walk across the road from the ship to the city, so we were able to go out before lunch, return and then go out again. Our sort of Port.
Holyhead itself has little to offer. We took a private tour with BusyBus to Snowdonia. Beautiful countryside, mountains, waterfalls and lots of sheep! The guide was really good, informative and entertaining.