This cruise was chosen by my husband who had never wanted to do a cruise! The choice for him was the fact that just about every day we were in a new port...in fact 15 different ports and 7 different countries. Our cruise started from Civitavecchia and since we were travelling from Australia we had a stopover for a couple of days in Kuala Lumpur at The Traders hotel....Fantastic...and then to Rome for 2 days, 1 night at the Hotel Regno...great location right near the Trevi Fountain and Pantheon but not 5 star...not bad either just not very luxurious. We were travelling with another couple and I had arranged for Rome cabs to do our transfers from Fuimicino to the city and from the city to the port etc...Rome cabs were fantastic and it was so nice to have clean cars and nice drivers...forget buses etc this is well worth the money and if you can share with others it becomes cheaper. We arrived at Civitavecchia without any hassles, although do look for the prostitutes on the way down the freeway as we all coped an eyeful of one lovely lady washing herself....interesting and highly amusing!! Embarkation was easy and quick, some paperwork to fill out and then to the counter for a quick photo, show and hand over your passport and then your identity/room card for your cruise is handed to you. We waited 10 minutes before our number to board was called and off we went. The Noordam is immaculate I cannot explain how clean and tidy the ship is and as I soon noted it was due to the amazing staff who seem to work 24 hours a day polishing, vacuming and dusting anything that doesn't move...so don't stand still too long!!!!We headed upstairs to the Lido for lunch...the food is fantastic and really there is choices for everyone...I can't understand when people find something to complain about as I feel some people just want a winge because they can. We had the call on the speakers to say our rooms were ready at 2pm....a quick rush downstairs to the 6th level...yep the room was perfect...we unpacked and just enjoyed knowing that for 20 days we did not have to pack again. The rooms are compact but perfectly organised, I never once felt boxed in and I loved being able to step on to the balcony every morning and watch as we docked in a new port....our friends chose a room with a window and were down on the first level...I did have a look and yes the room was almost identical in size except for the balcony...choices for some who don't wish to pay but want light choose that room...for me I love not having to get dressed to enjoy outside. Our first day was at sea....this was a test as we all were chomping at the bit to get out at a new port and explore luckily our meet and greet for our Cruise Critic group was arranged for 11am at the Crow's Nest...many thanks to Becky and Sara for arranging such a fun affair...we had Mimosa's and some of the crew spoke to us about the ports of call that we would be going to and what to look for...I am sorry I can't remember their names but it was highly entertaining and informative and it was great to meet all the people who had shared the excitement in the lead up to our cruise. After the M&G we set about exploring the ship there are lots of bars a casino, pools, nightclub, library, computer room, shops...which have some very good specials on some days...you get informed by a letter to your room, do go I found an amazing watch set reduced from $100 to $20...very nice...also there is the show room and piano bar...really lots of places to go but even so the Noordam is not a party ship...do not expect back to back entertainment unless you love a casino or bingo or random cooking or computer classes....there is a time between 7pm and 9pm were there is no entertainment...I should say nothing that would keep me awake...I think this is due to the fact that they must feel most people are at dinner...not a problem for us as we amused ourselves by doing bar crawls and just laughing about life...but for those who are unable to sometimes make up their own entertainment don't go on this cruise. Each night on the Noordam we attended at least one quiz or the piano bar...we also took advantage of the two for one happy hours in the Crow's Nest between 4 and 5 most days...yep we like a drink so I apologise to those people who don't drink reading this review. The Piano Bar is looked after by Buddy...he was a lot of fun and happy to take requests...although we are all sick to death of Piano Man!!!!'The quizzes are run either by DJ Dave who also does the nightclub or Glenn who is the Cruise Director...lots of fun and keeps the brain working. Other entertainment on the cruise that we saw were Natalie and the Hal Cats...watch for the amazing antics of the bongo player... and Zac who plays a lovely acoustic guitar...we also saw The Neptunes who had a fabulous lead singer...sorry I cannot remember her name but we only had time to see them once. There is also full production shows on every night...I am afraid I only watched 10 minutes of one so I am unable to make a comment...it was just not something we chose not to watch. There is also a string quartet but since I am not a huge fan of classical music I only saw them as I walked past where they were playing...some people seemed to be enjoying them so assume they are okay.
The first port of call was Dubrovnik Croatia, we chose to use the HAL shuttle to the town at $15 per person...we were quite happy to pay this but as we found out later another couple we know paid $1 for the local bus. This city is a walled city and the walk of the wall is a must...please do not do this unless you are fit or at least capable of taking large steps up to reach the top of the wall!! We also had a place we had read about that we really wanted to visit...so after the wall we went in search of D'Vinos a local wine bar...well worth looking for if you like wine...and if you want more info just contact me.
Next Port of call was Kerkira Greece...or Corfu town...we walked from the ship into town about 2km it is a flat even surface so not hard even if it was raining ...I loved this town it was everything that I liked, some time to look at the fortress and sometime at the shops and sometime eating...really just lovely and the people were very nice...it was also less crowded than Dubrovnik which seemed to have more tourists than locals. I will say for those that use the local toilets...always carry tissues or toilet paper and you are not supposed to flush the paper down the toilet...yukkkk!!! But as they have no suridge systems the toilet has to be put into bins...sorry to explain this but it can be a bit of a shock if you don't know.
6121 is a great room....very quiet and located not far from the aft elevators...closet is fine plenty of room...and the balcony is big enough...there is no Wifi in this room.