This was our first time in Europe and it won't be our last!! This was our second time sailing in this ship! We did the Mardis Gras cruise this year which again was outstanding! The meals were of 5 Star quality in the main dining room. We did go to the Lawn Club one evening and although the meal was delicious the meals in the main dining room are just as good . The service is over the top in all areas of the ship.
We enjoyed all the ports of call. We took a mixture of ship and private excursions. The ship excursions were crowded and time is wasted with bathroom breaks as often there was limited facilities. They are overpriced. We took private tours with ItalyTours.eu and they were TOP NOTCH!! Eight people plus a driver compared to 60 plus on the ships excursions!! We ALWAYS were back to the ship in plenty of time which was one of my worries! Our guides spoke great English and they all did everything possible to make our excursion the best ever!! We sent two days in Barcelona after the cruise. We were concerned about the civil unrest and did witness one protest march that went by our hotel but the demonstration was controlled. We booked two excursions with Barcelona Tours which we really enjoyed. We did the Barcelona Highlights Tour and took in a Flamenco Dinner and Dance Show at Tables de Cordoba which is a MUST SEE!! Truly, for me, the Flamenco show was the highlight of our trip. The meal is buffet with free wine and the selection of food was terrific even for fussy eaters like myself. After the meal we were ushered in to a small area for the dance show. I was lucky enough to get a front row seat and I could have reached over and touched the dancers!! They put on an unbelievable show !!!!! My only suggestion about our trip is that I would travel in late September when the weather would be a bit warmer. We did book three beach excursions and two were cancelled due to the lack of participation.