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  1. #21
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    Default Re: Cruise to Italy

    CruiseCritic is a good resource. Once you commit to a cruise, go there and sign onto the blog entry for the cruise. You can exchange info with others and pick up some good tips. It's particularly good for arranging less expensive shore excursions. I've gotten together several times with more experienced travelers and been able to get some really unusual shore trips that suited me far better than the ones packaged by the ship.

    I found Norwegian to be a good line. We enjoyed the unscheduled dining, although you have to wait if you eat when everyone else does. Most other lines now have loosely schedule dining options as well. And, if you have the time, check into taking Cunard or a repo cruise to go over to Europe. We found it cheaper than air, and a lot more fun. Since we can't fly anyway, it was our only option.

  2. #22
    Super Star Member EddieWalker's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cruise to Italy

    Right now I'm looking at flights. It's $850 each to fly round trip to Barcelona. The cruise starts in Venice and ends in Barcelona. I can get a flight out of Barcelona at 11 am, six hours after the ship is supposed to arrive. I think that is pushing it and it might be better to leave Barcelona the next day. That gives us a full day to tour and site see there, then fly out the next day.

    If we arrive in Barcelona, I'm comparing flying and taking the train to Venice. I've traveled on trains in Europe before and thought it was an easy way to get around. Maybe going to Switzerland for the night or a day, and then on to Venice for the cruise?

    Eddie

  3. #23
    Super Star Member EddieWalker's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cruise to Italy

    Looking at the map and routes for the trains, Switzerland isn't that far out of the way. From what I'm seeing online of places to see and spend the night, Bern looks really nice. I'm looking into landing in Barcelona, taking the train to Bern, spending the day there looking around, then taking another train to Venice for the cruise.

    Eddie

  4. #24
    Super Star Member EddieWalker's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cruise to Italy

    Karen was told she can take vacation in May, so we're good there. She is sending off her paperwork for her passport on Monday, so that should be plenty of time. We are very close to booking this. I'm still unsure about the train to Bern on the way to Venice, but that's not a big concern. From prevous experience there, it's just a matter of jumping from one train to another to get where you want to go. The best thing is that it's all through amazing scenery!!!!

    Plan B is to get a one way flight from Barcelona to Venice. Cheapest price for this is on Ibernia Airlines for $190 each if we buy right now, the next price is $270 each,which is still reasonable and there are tons of tickets at that price.

    This just might happen!!!

    Eddie

  5. #25
    Super Star Member RoyJackson's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cruise to Italy

    Quote Originally Posted by mjarrels View Post
    21 years in the U. S. Navy... Couldn't pay me to take a cruise anymore!

    mark
    Yep...9 years Navy here (including 2 years of shore duty in Italy)...no more deep water for this boy!!

    However, if you've never been on a ship, it would be a worthwhile adventure. If I were to take a cruise though...I'd want to go on a cargo vessel that has berths for passengers rather then a cruise ship.
    Roy Jackson

    "Any government that does not trust its citizens with firearms is either a tyranny, or planning to become one."
    -Joseph P. Martino

  6. #26
    Elite Member jimmyj's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cruise to Italy

    Sounds like it is coming together Eddie! I am envious!
    God Bless our brave men, bring them home, safe again.

  7. #27
    Elite Member tallyho8's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cruise to Italy

    There are a few other cruises in May you might want to consider that go from Barcelona to Venice.

    Discount Cruises, Last-Minute Cruises, Short Notice Cruises - Vacations To Go

    This one ends up back in Barcelona making travel plans easy on Carnival's newest remodeled ship. Discount Cruises, Last-Minute Cruises, Short Notice Cruises - Vacations To Go
    Another round trip one: Discount Cruises, Last-Minute Cruises, Short Notice Cruises - Vacations To Go
    and another: Discount Cruises, Last-Minute Cruises, Short Notice Cruises - Vacations To Go

    Though I will have to admit your train ride through the Alps sounds very interesting.
    Happy Trails!
    Dudley

  8. #28
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    Default Re: Cruise to Italy

    Quote Originally Posted by RoyJackson View Post
    Yep...9 years Navy here (including 2 years of shore duty in Italy)...no more deep water for this boy!!

    However, if you've never been on a ship, it would be a worthwhile adventure. If I were to take a cruise though...I'd want to go on a cargo vessel that has berths for passengers rather then a cruise ship.
    I have friends who've taken cargo ships. There are companies that specialize in that, although the freighters tend to be a little old, given that the giant container ships of today don't usually build in passenger room. My friends tell me it's fun, but not like a cruise liner. Facilities are comfortable, but sparse. Elevators are rare, food is good but ordinary. Few amenities. Real issue is that people take second place to freight. Routes can change, even at sea. Port stops can be for hours, or days... Sometimes longer. One friend took a 21 day cruise along the east coast of South America. They got a few African ports thrown in on the way... And a 36 day cruise instead - no extra charge. Price was a little less than what you'd pay for a passenger liner, but the outcome may not be what you think.

  9. #29
    Super Star Member EddieWalker's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cruise to Italy

    Thanks for the suggestion Dudley. Cruise Critic gives the Spirit a 75% aproval rating Norwegian Spirit - NCL which is kind of low. That cruise looks great, but for less money, Carnival and the Carnival Legend gets a 83% aproval rating Carnival Legend - Carnival

    Carnival has the cruise listed for $1,049 each, but the same cruise on Orbitz.com has it for $979 each Show Cruise Information

    Eddie

  10. #30
    Super Star Member EddieWalker's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cruise to Italy

    Looks like getting a train from Barcelona to anywhere in Switzerland is more trouble then it's worth, so now I'm looking at flights. There are only two regular destinations out of BCN to Switzerland. Geneva and Zurich. Since Zurich is closer to where we want to go, I've found several flights there for $157 each, one way. We will land in BCN at 9 am, fly out at 2:30 and be in Zurich by 7 that evening. Then we'll spend two nights there while resting and sight seeing the city, then take the train down to Venice on Friday.

    Lichtenstein is real close to the route we'll be taking, so maybe a quick stop there to see the castle might happen too!!!!

    It's getting exciting,
    Eddie

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