I was celebrating a big birthday in April and our wedding anniversary in May so we decided to do something different - we usually do golfing vacations or visit family back in the U.K. So, we chose a 15 day cruise from Port Canaveral finishing in Barcelona. I did extensive research and also found the Roll Call on Cruise Critic invaluable as other passengers had great information to share. There were negative remarks on the internet about the design of the cabins, the wavy walls and especially the bathroom set up so I looked up videos on YouTube - we did not have a problem with the design - both the toilet and the shower are in cubicles of frosted glass and there is a privacy curtain to pull across if needed.
There isn't a lot of space between the bottom of the bed and the units making it impossible for 2 people to pass at the same time, but you organize yourself .. Plenty of storage space, I was surprised.
We found the food to be excellent and liked the freestyle dining very much - you didn't have to sit at the same table at the same time every evening and they offered the possibility to share tables with others, which we found to be very enriching as we spoke with people from different parts of the world and it was a very pleasant way to spend most mealtimes.
Entertainment catered for all tastes, although we understood from others that it was easier to see shows on smaller ships. We saw what we wanted to with the exception of a couple of things that we fully booked. On board is a "replica" of the Cavern Club in Liverpool - they have a Beatles tribute band playing there, so obviously only a very limited number of people can fit into it at a time, so they had the band perform one evening in the main theater which gave many more people the opportunity to watch and listen.
There were activities, not that we participated much, although I used the exercise room every day and all treadmills and bikes look out to see, very pleasant. The pool wasn't very big but neither was it ever full, maybe different when the children are off school and on vacation.
The service was great in every aspect, the crew extremely polite and pleasing. We were told there are 74 different nationalities on board.
The itinerary is what attracted us to the cruise, we had been to some of the ports many years' ago and it was a delight to re-visit and see the changes. We only took one excursion, which was from Cadiz to Seville, the rest we did on our own, using the hop on hop off buses mainly.
As far as embarkation and disembarkation were concerned, again, no problems. We stayed for a couple of extra nights in Barcelona, again to re-visit. As we live in Florida we did not explore the departure city.
Wi-fi. We chose the most expensive option as we needed to remain in contact with our business and found it worked perfectly, we even streamed a movie one evening without interruption.
One important thing to remember as far as we were concerned, the sea was calm for the entire duration of the cruise. This obviously influenced in our enjoyment level, because had it been rough and we'd been sea sick, we would not have enjoyed the culinary delights, especially the specialty restaurants, in the way we did. The whole thing for us, was a very positive experience and we have definitely made some beautiful memories.
The cabin had a lot more storage space than expected, even after watching a very comprehensive YouTube video. Plenty of hanging space, 3 deep drawers, lots of hidden areas, we didn't even use everywhere.
Maybe the layout is a little different - we don't have a lot to compare it to - seems a little strange walking in the door with the toilet cubicle on one side and the shower cubicle on the other, then the wash basin in the room itself, but it was actually quite practical and caused us no problems.
It was good to have a full sliding window onto the balcony. The cabin was bright because of that. Limited plug ins for devices but we managed perfectly. The only way to comfortably watch tv, which we didn't do much of, was sitting on the bed.
All in all - and until we go on another cruise on a different ship to compare (I went on a 4 day one 10 years' ago and don't remember that much about the layout), we were very satisfied with our cabin.
We walked around the town, took the little tourist tram, visited the 16th century fort and military museum finishing off with the best seafood/fish stew we have ever eaten at the Avenida Dos Anjos restaurant on the main promenade. It was 26 euros for 2 people and was absolutely delicious.
The only negative thing we found was young men begging on some of the streets - they looked able bodied, so it was a little off-putting.
We decided to take the hop on hop off bus in order to cover as much ground as possible. The views were stunning from many parts of the route, although the bus driver appeared to be in a hurry and barely hesitated at some of the stops making it difficult to get off if you were upstairs, as we were. A delightful place.
Our guide was very informative and friendly, it would have been nice to spend a little longer there. Our visit coincided with the Feria de Abril, one of the most famous festivals in Spain, when wealthy people from all over Spain bring their horses and carriages to parade around the city and fair enclosure. It was beautiful to see and we were very fortunate with the timing. Seville is a beautiful city.View All 27 Seville on Your Own Reviews
It seemed an easy way to see the city, which was very enjoyable. We just stayed on the bus and looked at the scenery.View All undefined undefined Reviews
Within a few minutes walk you're in the town, which has an attractive pedestrian area with little shops, bars, restaurants. The atmosphere was pleasing and we enjoyed our short visit.
We lived on this island for 30 years so needed no introduction, although having lived away from it for 20, there have been some major changes - many more "high end" stores in the city center and the introduction of hop on hop off buses that weren't there previously. We had lunch with friends at a busy restaurant called Sa Premsa where the menu of the day is around 15 euros to include appetizer, entree, dessert and wine. The whole place was buzzing due to the amount of cruise ship passengers in port. The island has beautiful scenery, especially on the west coast.
Our cruise finished in Barcelona so we spent 2 extra nights to re-acquaint ourselves with a place we hadn't visited for about 30 years. We took a 1/2 day tour immediately after leaving the ship, which was very professionally done by Barcelona Day Tours, they were great. The next day we did the hop on hop off with Barcelona BusTuristic which was excellent. The audio was the best of the hoho's that we did and there was ample warning we were approaching the numerous stops. We visited the wonderful indoor market, La Boqueria, Park Guell, Sagrada Familia, etc., and for dinner on our last night ate at Los Caracoles, just off of the Ramblas which was excellent. Our hotel, the Silken Ramblas also just off of Las Ramblas was good, they have an excellent menu of the day that they also serve in the evening for 17 euros, including a glass of wine.View All 284 City Tour Reviews