First Mediterranean Cruise - A New Experience: Liberty of the Seas Cruise Review by sonvoltken6

Liberty of the Seas 5
Member Since 2011
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First Mediterranean Cruise - A New Experience

Sail Date: October 2011
Destination: Europe - Western Mediterranean
Embarkation: Barcelona
We are Caribbean and Bahamas cruise veterans, but we weren't sure what to expect on our first Med cruise. We flew overnight to Barcelona the day of the cruise - lesson 1. We had flight delays from Orlando to JFK, and it was stressful. But our JFK flight was also late, and though we landed 3 hours late we made it to Barcelona about 11 am. The cab ride was easy, and 30 Euros later we were at the pier.

The check in process at Barcelona was quite simple. There was no line to check luggage or check in, and even the security line was next to nothing. We got on board and headed to Windjammer. Even though it was about 12:30, there were plenty of tables.

We love the Liberty of the Seas, having cruised her once and the Freedom once. The upgrades they made are great too - adding the big screen TV by the pool deck, and the Dream Works characters (I don't care how old you are, if you don't like Shrek you ain't human). But the biggest thing we liked were the new shows - More up in the air, a Cirque Du Soleil show and Saturday Night Fever. They were the only shows we saw, and neither disappointed.

But that brings me to my biggest complaint - we missed shows because of the schedule. I guess because of the long tours, the first dinner is 6:30, and there were times when the only show was at 8:00. We were at a table for 11 and there was no way we were getting out by 8. In general, and I think it's because of the long port days, there were not as many activities. But I didn't take this cruise for the on-board fun, I took it to see the sights. More on that below.

Our wait staff was average, as was our stateroom attendant. I believe this is a general trend on RCCI - good service but not as great as in the past. As Diamond Plus members, we leaned heavily on our concierge, and we did get a lot of help from him.

The food was good, though as some have noted they don't serve Lobster any more. I love lobster tail, but the ship's one always had too much garlic. The menu is good and they have made some new changes. We did WJ for breakfast, it was great. We did Johnny Rockets on sea day for lunch - the service was slow but the food was hot and delish.

Disembarkation was easy - again we leaned on the concierge to walk us off. We got our bags and were on the way to the hotel.

We stayed two nights in Barcelona afterward. If you go, I STRONGLY recommend Hotel Colon, right near the Cathedral. The best service I have gotten in a hotel in a long long time. Not to be missed! Less

Published 10/30/11

Cabin review: JS1356 Junior Suite

Our cabin was great - we were 4 cabins from the Elevators, on the same side as Windjammer and Dining Room and were right near the concierge club. This was the best location we have ever had I think.

Read All Junior Suite (JS) Reviews >>

Port and Shore Excursions

Yes, it says Florence, but the actual port is Livorno. What a dumpy place. But the countryside you see on the drive to Florence is lovely. And Florence, what can I say. Great city, great food, great art and not nearly enough time. We skipped the Leaning Tower based on a recommendation from my boss. Trust me you want as much time as possible in Florence.

The actual port was Toulon, near Marseille. Neat little port, and some really cool places. Not to be missed - Cassis. Great and cute little town with some awesome little shops and bistros. Also cool is the Notre Dame de la Garde - sure you have to climb 220 steps give or take but it is well worth it to see the church - and the views!

We enjoyed this port. A must see - Pompeii. It was great, and we had a great tour of this old city. You really could spend a whole day just in Pompeii. After the half day tour, we then went and just walked around Naples. Very good food, some cool shops and street vendors selling knock-off purses laid out on bed sheets (just like New York!).
Read 1161 Naples Reviews

Again, you don't dock in Rome, but maybe 80 KM away. Rome is amazing and was my favorite port. The crowds are insane, there had to be 10,000 people in St. Peter's or it seemed that way. The Pantheon is amazing, as is the Coliseum. The unknown Jewel - St. Peter's in Chains, just up hill from the Coliseum. Besides seeing the chains which help St. Peter in prison, you also see DaVinci's Moses. Again 7 or 8 hours in the port is not nearly enough!

Also another cute French port. Nice isn't all it's cracked up to be but we saw the old town of St. Paul de Vence. That was one of the coolest things we saw. This is a tender port so be prepared for that. Many folks went to Monaco and Monte Carlo and liked it, so I guess that is for next time.

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Member Since 2011
891 Forum Posts
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