After a couple of days in Barcelona, Spain in July 2009, we set sail on the Royal Caribbean Brilliance of the Seas for a 12 night Mediterranean cruise. Stops included:
- Cannes, France
- Livornio (Florence & Pisa), Italy
- Civitavecchia (Rome), Italy
- Naples, Italy
- Venice, Italy
- Dubrovnik, Croatia
- Corfu, Greece
[singlepic id=107 w=320 h=240 mode=watermark float=left]First let’s discuss the ship and it’s crew. The ship was perfect for a Mediterranean voyage. There were very little places you could be inside the ship where you couldn’t see the ocean or the land in the distance. Besides the fact that she is a much larger ship than those sailing 3 and 4 day sailings, she was a beautifully appointed ship. Public spaces were adorned in with an ornate mahogany. There was even pool tables you can use while sailing (something scientific allows for this to happen 😉 ). The crew was the friendliest I’d seen to date. Every evening, the cruise director staff and even the singers and dancers gathered by the piano to watch Darren B. play. Crew on cruises are always friendly, but this crew went above and beyond to make our sailing special. It wasn’t just the cruise director staff like Erky from Turkey or Simon. The bar staff and the waiters and waiters assistance were all doing their part to make it an amazing experience.
If I have to find fault…ok…one thing bothered me. I chose to have a set seating time. When I booked, I selected my time. It turned out we were sitting behind a wall on the second story (below were the staircases). With so many beautiful views, we couldn’t see them. I did ask to be moved, but I was told I would have to become ‘my time dining’ in order to have a different table. Since I refused to worry about reservations on a daily basis or wait in lines to eat, I decided we would leave it alone. Our wait staff more than made up for our ‘dunce cap-style’ seating location!
Our first port of call was Cannes, France. We were very excited. My Goddaughter had originally wanted to visit the Eiffel Tower, but with our tight budget, we felt we could get more for our money on a cruise vacation. Unfortunately, this was one of only two stops that we didn’t prearrange a shore excursion. We thought we would see the city, check out the stores and hit the beach. Well…the famous theatre was closed to us. We walked around the city, which was pretty but without a guide meant little to us. The stores were places like Christian Dior, Coach and the like. On our budget, there was no shopping to enjoy. As for the beach, it was crowded and I have to admit, the color of the water and sand just wasn’t appealing to me. We headed back to the ship and enjoyed the pool for the rest of the afternoon.
[singlepic id=119 w=320 h=240 mode=watermark float=right]Next we docked in Livornio. Here we had an excursion that had us visiting Florence and Pisa.
[singlepic id=167 w=320 h=240 mode=watermark float=left]It was a Sunday when we arrived in Civitavecchia.
This one is still a work in progress… I’ll get back to it soon.