Our experience aboard MSC Seaview was generally very positive and we have excellent memories. However, there were some things we felt fell short. I’ll give you the good and the disappointing bit keep in mind we had a wonderful time.
We are experienced American cruisers ha omg been on about 15 Caribbean cruises. We have been to Europe a few times but this was our first cruise. We also brought our 18 year old son and his best friend.
We chose the Seaview because it was new, looked interesting and a very good value. Reading reviews here we lowered expectations a little and prepared for some issues.
We did not take an MSC sponsored excursion but we did hire a private tour guide and it was terrific. Luigi drove us to several sites around the city and he was very knowledgeable. Actually we hired the company for turn key service in Rome. They met us at the airport, transferred us to the hotel which they arraigned, handled transport to the ship and then the pickup and tour of the city. We also had them arrange a hotel in Rome before then transporting us to the airport home. We toured the Coliseum as well as the Vatican. We are not Catholics but this is a tour everyone should take. We wandered the streets around our hotel and had a great time eating, drinking and mixing with people we met.
Our first stop. It’s a bit undersold as a destination. The buildings are full of character and the streets are quaint and romantic. You’ll want to stop for a drink or a meal at the cafes squeezed into narrow streets. And the yachts!
This was probably our favorite stop. The perfect mix of hustle and bustle and small spots to treasure. Just walk, you don’t need an excursion. Just walk and keep your head on a swivel. So much beauty all around you. Visit the Palma cathedral and the adjacent palace. We also made it to the shore and had a drink seaside. There is a 13 Euro fee for transport from the ship as the city center is a hike. Didn’t like that charge for what is basically a land tender.
This stop suffers from being on a Sunday. Unlike the States, life rather stops on a Sunday around here. Some tourist shops were open as well as some seaside restaurants but mostly it was a very quiet walk around this pretty city. Rather unremarkable though. Maybe this is the place for an excursion.
We absolutely loved Genoa! We walked several miles seeing all sides of the city. My wife found an online walking tour. Started in some very narrow, dark passageways filled with shops. It wasn’t scary, just different. Eventually we came upon Christopher Columbus’ home as well as some castle relics. The buildings have such depth and character! My son was desperate to find beach sand at every port for a bottle so we went well out of our way in Genoa. Away from the tourists we found the real city and loved it. Climbed 174 steps for a great view, got yelled at in Spanish for accidentally trespassing on a beach, and found a beautiful pedestrian street for shopping and dining. Embrace Genoa.
We did the bot tour to three quaint seaside stops. Longish ride and some struggled with seasickness. But worth the trouble. These are post card stops to very old places built into steep rock inclines. We had a snack at one and wine at another. We climbed to a vineyard and sat with a woman with which we shared no language. Yet we somehow communicated and enjoyed our glass. Do this one.