Sept. or Oct. for European Cruise

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#1
34 Posts
Joined Jan 2005
We're planning a European cruise on the Century. It begins in Barcelona and goes to France, Italy, Greece, Turkey. Would it be better to go 9/7 or 10/1? Is there a big temperature change in October? Also any recommendations for tours? We have never been to Europe so anything you can suggest would be deeply appreciated. Thank you in advance.
#2
Shady Cove, Oregon
976 Posts
Joined Apr 2004
Originally posted by Caly
We're planning a European cruise on the Century. It begins in Barcelona and goes to France, Italy, Greece, Turkey. Would it be better to go 9/7 or 10/1? Is there a big temperature change in October? Also any recommendations for tours? We have never been to Europe so anything you can suggest would be deeply appreciated. Thank you in advance.
The later the better temperature wise and crowd wise. We did the Med on the Solstice in Nov. and it was beyond belief!!!! Great weather, no crowds and great tour guides. As far as tours, everyone has different preferences. However, we did the following:
My03A, PR09A, KD26A, RHo2A, SO01B, NP08A and loved them all. Fabulous guides!!!
#3
Vancouver, BC
17,085 Posts
Joined Feb 2002
I'd say either of those dates would be great. It would be less hot in October, but September is lovely. We had friends who did it in November and got blown to pieces in France so it's get's to be a crap shoot the later you go. Our first trip was early October and we only hit rain one day.
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#4
Libertyville, Illinois (Chicago Area)
2,076 Posts
Joined Feb 2006
I would agree about the later trip if it works with your schedule. We are booked on the Century on the 19th of September. We have been in Europe in both September (two times) and the beginning of November. The weather for us was better in September (less rain), but there were much fewer crowds in November. Our other trips started September 7, and it was still quite warm in Greece and Italy; the trip that began September 8th was about the same, with the stops in Spain and Morocco being quite warm. We have not been in October, but will know more after this trip ends.

If you have specific questions, you can ask on the port of call boards, or once you decide on your travel dates, on your roll call. If you have any questions that you would like to ask me, my email is in my signature. When we went to the Med the first time, we were traveling with friends from Scotland, so they were great tour guides. We booked ship's tours in Florence, Naples, Rome, and Santorini; we did our own thing in Villefranche, Dubrovnik, Venice, Corfu and Athens. In Rome, we booked the tour that included the Vatican, the Coliseum and the Forum as well as a great lunch. In Naples, we did a tour called the Exclusive Amalfi Coast, which was wonderful; we were in small vans and were able to get to Positano, to which the larger tour buses cannot go due to the narrowness of the roads there; the tour also went to Pompeii and Sorrento. We did a tour in Florence called Florence on your own, which was exactly what it implied; bus transportation to and from the ship. Our friends had been there several times and were excellent tour guides. In Santorini, our tour went to Pyrgos with a stop at a taverna for snacks. Great way to avoid the crowds during disembarkation. The other ports were easily navigable on our own and we had a lot of fun wandering, enjoying the local shops, restaurants and sites on our own.
Hope this helps; if those two dates are your choices either one will be fine, but the latter one might be a bit cooler and less crowded.
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#5
Delaware
511 Posts
Joined Aug 2009
October is better. As for tours, go for longer ones. X tends to dock in industrial ports, so 10 hours of shorex is better than 5 hours of shorex + 5 hours of downtime in port
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#6
Michigan
68 Posts
Joined Feb 2010
The further away from summer you get the less crowded the cities will be. Is there a price difference? I'd say go with the cheaper one. The mediterranean will still be warm in October. I travelled to Barcelona over Thanksgiving weekend one year and I remember wearing shorts or at most at night a sweatshirt and jeans.
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#7
Shalimar FL
5,102 Posts
Joined Jan 2008
You can see the average temps for the various places, but of course the actual wx, especially any rain/storming is a bet on the come line. We went late Nov (20 Nov!) and had great wx in all ports. Some of the islands (Santorini) had little open but still very enjoyable. We stayed on for the following TA from Rome. Ran into poor wx in Livorno but the rest was very nice.

Personally, I'd look at the Oct cruise. A bit more chance of rain, but lower averages, less crowds and that does matter. We went to Ephesis and the guide was saying how very nice it was - it said in season it was wall-to-wall.

Denny
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#8
Sheffield, UK
4,315 Posts
Joined Nov 2005
There's less light, the later you go. The days will be (a bit) shorter, and the sun won't get quite as high in the sky so everything will be a little more muted.

Also the evening coolness will descend earlier. We did a beach holiday in Mallorca in late September a few years ago, and we were surprised at how quickly things cooled off, starting from 5:30 or so.
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#9
16,449 Posts
Joined Sep 2005
We were in the Med this past Sept 1-16. (not Turkey) There were crowds, but the weather was perfect. Barcelona was wonderful as was Venice where we added days both pre and post cruise. Athens was hot, but the rest of the stops were fine.

I would probably choose late Sept.or Oct. date next time. To lose some of the crowding. However... then rain and cloudy skies start...hmmm
#11
Greenville, SC USA
1,113 Posts
Joined Jan 2004
We basically did that trip last year (Oct. 3) on the Summit, 14 days. We prepared for "cooler" weather but it was hot just about every place we went except Split! Had to wear the same couple of pairs of shorts about every day! Definitely didn't need the long sleeves. Still crowds in places like Rome. Had one night of rain but it was while we were cruising. We booked all of our trips with the ship b/c this was our first trip to Europe and we were 3 couples. Decided that while we didn't know the languages, etc. we would just do the ship's tours. Although we were on large buses we didn't feel like cattle. The remote speaker system was great! DIdn't have to worry about being around our guide to hear him/her. I have a friend going on July -- haven't warned her about the heat yet!
#12
292 Posts
Joined Sep 2008
We have gone in October (both early and late) for the last two years. It has been extremely warm at every stop. This past year we went late Oct and packed heavier clothes and only a few pairs of shorts. We had to get the shorts dry cleaned a couple of times since it was that warm and we were short on them. This year we are booked on the Sept 7 cruise you mentioned. I think it will be very warm, but I'm hoping it won't be crowded as it's past their peak summer season. We'll see, either way, Sept. or October, it's going to still be warm. I do remember reading somewhere that Oct is a rainy month over there, so you just never know. You have to bring a variety of clothing that can be layered.