This cruise took us to several bucket list locations and everything was great. Smooth, quick embarkation, a comfortable and spacious room, and friendly attentive staff all made this an amazing trip. The excursions were well organized and went smoothly- the buses were comfortable and air conditioned. The guides were extremely knowledgeable and helpful. Even when our Jerusalem tour ran late because of gridlocked traffic in the end everything was fine. When we arrived back at the ship our dinner was waiting for us and we were not rushed at all.
My group decided to leave the ship on the last night, in Haifa Isreal instead of sailing to Limassol because it was so difficult getting flights home from there. The tour director Karen could not have been nicer. She arranged a van to pick us up at the port and drive us to Tel Aviv (of course it was our responsibility to pay). We were so grateful for the help and it was such a relief that we didn’t have try and figure it out on our own. The port was a commercial port, not a traditional cruise port so there wasn’t a line of cabs sitting there like you might see at most cruise ports.
On that note, all of the staff were exceptionally helpful and friendly. The only suggestion I would have was the guitarist, although very talented, was inclined to play slow, slow songs. We often felt like we were sitting in a dentist office- lol! We put on our ship survey to encourage him to play more upbeat tunes- we may be over 50 but we still have a pulse! A little lively dance music would have gone over very well.
The room was incredibly comfortable and spacious. There were lots of places for storage. The closets were really cool! The balcony was a good size and the outside chairs had cushions- which was a very nice touch. The bathroom was huge with plenty of storage! The room also had plugs and USB ports all over the place- which was very nice. Plenty of spots to conveniently plug our devices in- many all around the bed. The bed and pillows were very comfortable.
Crazy traffic, crowds of people and a great time.
That’s a long day. We did Jerusalem and Bethlehem. Although the sites are amazing and moving it was incredibly crowded- with lots of people who may not care about personal space. So just be aware. It can get frustrating when you’ve come all that way to see something and a group of people (a different tour group from different country) sets up shop in front of it and won’t move so you can’t get close. They do not care about giving others a chance to see it or even get close. I guess some cultures don’t worry about that. And now it is time to move on… So you don’t really see it . just be forewarned. It happened in multiple places.