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About pacmom

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  1. pacmom

    One month til Lord of the Glens

    Thank you all for the kind thoughts about my surgery. It is supposed to be a 20 minute procedure. Hopefully recovery is smooth. So looking forward to this trip. Something different on this trip. at breakfast, we pick our entrée for both lunch and dinner. Should prove to be an interesting memory exercise. Hopefully the rain will come to Europe and cruisers will get to enjoy the beautiful rivers and towns. Pat
  2. This will be #26, So glad we will not be dealing with lack of water. We leave on Sept 20th for a few days in Glasgow. DH is trying to track down an illusive grandfather with the surname of MacDonald--like Smith or Jones here in the States. He has a few appointments set up and I will just enjoy the city. On the 24th (bank Holiday), we travel to Inverness by bus to meet the group and then journey to Kyle to board the Lord of the Glens. We will see parts of Scotland we've yet to visit. Watched Loch Ness, a mini series on Acorn TV and kept seeing the famous Neptune Staircase. It really does resemble a very, very large staircase. After the cruise, we are flying WOW, Iceland Air no frills, to Dublin for 5 days. This is a genealogy trip for both of us. Then back to reality and back surgery. Will post, but not on the cruise. Will try to do a bit while in Dublin, but definitely when home. Will not be down long--Doc claims it is a 20 minute procedure to fix a degenerating joint. Travel safely, hopefully on water and not on a bus. Pat:)
  3. pacmom

    Which hotel in Budapest?

    Stay on the Pest side, that is where all the Christmas markets are. Last time we were there we found 4 of them, but then we are very comfortable using public transit. It is a magical time of year--enjoy.
  4. When we were there in June, our hotel was the Hilton in Vancouver, WA. Very nice hotel. you will do all your ship check in at the hotel. There is a farmer's market right hear the hotel on the Sunday. We truly enjoyed our trip. Pat
  5. Steve We met on Marina a few years back. Your review of your Viking trip was very honest. We have made 4 Viking trips, the last being China. It is truly the jewel in their crown. Can understand your disappointment. Since you really like Celebrity, look at AMA or if you want to go all inclusive try Uniworld. There are others out there, but we have not been on them. Safe travels on river or ocean. Pat
  6. We have been on 3 Croisi trips, no children on any. We do tend to travel ***** the shoulder seasons. Know their Douro trip in the summer has children on it.. Personally I would book with Saga. We have booked directly with Croisi for their Berlin to Amsterdam trip for next year. We will be traveling by ourselves. Pat
  7. Good morning, Our trip on the Belle Cadiz was very good. It was our third river cruise with Road Scholar on a Croisi ship. We were a group of about 20 with our own guide and tours. Cannot tell about the ship tours because we had our own. Cabins were about the same size as on most river cruises, no balconies. There was a real lack of storage space in our cabin, biggest complaint of trip. Cabin stewards were wonderful, cabin kept very clean. Food. Biggest adjustment for Americans is the food service. Breakfast is buffet style with an omelet station and some days pancakes cooked to order. Lunch and dinner were plated single entree meals. Meals posted early in the day, so if you had a real problem with an entree you were able to talk with the chef about substitutes. There was usually enough food on your plate that you did not go hungry. For those most part meal time was the only time food was available. Bar. Bar was open all day and evening. The bar was where you could get coffee and tea and anything else you wanted to drink. There were bottles of water to take on tours. They offered the most wonderful olives during the pre dinner time, also bar snacks. the Boat. Very small, slow elevator. Stairs seemed to be spirally, always used 2 hands. Large lounge very light with large windows. There was a small lounge aft that we used for our lectures and a lovely veranda off that. Announcements. All made in the languages of the guests on board. We did meet 2 couples from Odessa who were very glad the announcements were in English. Someone once said it isn't lost, it is somewhere. Click one more time and here is the message I thought was lost. Will stop here to give you time to digest this and happy to answer any questions. Pat
  8. pacmom

    Group Bookings

    Please be aware that river cruising in Europe is very different from ocean cruising. Europe has no laws about people with disabilities. There is no room on most of the boats for motorized scooters. The elevators on the boats do not go up to the sundeck--some have a motorized chair seat, but not all. I mention this because there are times when there is another boat or boat between yours and the dock. If the deck levels are different it means going up to the sundeck and across the other boat or boats and then down stairs again to get to the dock. The streets in most of the towns visited are cobblestone, so require sturdy walking shoes. We have cane seats which are wonderful when your guides stops and no seats available, just flip the seat and you can listen in comfort. You can find them online thru Amazon or Magellan. Hopefully you will find a good travel agent to walk you thru all of this. And yes, just about every line has group rates. Pat
  9. Well my detailed message is floating in cyberspace. Will attempt it again this afternoon. This is a trip for those who can walk and climb and handle bus trips of up to 2 hours. It is a wonderful trip. We took this trip with Road Scholar. If you can take the trip with them--own guide, own tours, all inclusive.
  10. pacmom

    Rhine Cruise departure

    Sometimes you overnite in Amsterdam. If not, you will be given a time to be on board. There is a safety briefing and port talk for next day. Times for leaving can change because of weather and river conditions. Call your cruise line to get a better answer.:)
  11. pacmom

    Snake & Columbia River Cruise

    Excursions that we took. DH went zip lining and loved it. Only 4 people from the boat went. I took the Lewis and Clark expedition and really enjoyed it. There is so much to learn about that time. The Riverlorian Mary gave a series of lectures about the expedition--nothing too technical. Enjoyed her talk about medicine at that time and on the trip. It is amazing that only one person died and that was his appendix. We also did the Red Mountain Wine and Spirits tour. Mess up with the Falls trip. It was the day after the zip lining and DH really didn't want to go. Valerie the tour person had been able to find 2 seats, but we didn't go. The boat is not new and had formally been the Empress of the North. Our cabin 205 was very clean--bed too soft for me, but DH loved it. Loved having a Kuerig machine in the cabin--tea and or coffee at any time. Made good use of our balcony because of the long daylight hours. This was our 26th river cruise with various companies. Food in Main Dining Room was okay. Breads and desserts really needed to be upgraded. We only ate dinner there. The night that lobster was on the menu, we ordered 1/2 portion of the prime rib to go with it. The 2 nites in the River Grill entree was also lobster which you could have with a 1/2 portion of beef tornedos. The chef in the river grill was fantastic. He was there for all three meals. The grill station at breakfast and lunch were really good--super cheeseburgers. Entertainment was quite good, two recent graduates of BelmontU. Music program--Jordan and Isaac. Great voices and good dance moves. They also had 2 guest artists, banjo program super. Loved the way that embarkation was handled--all done at the precruise hotel. We did come in a day early and enjoyed wandering around Vancouver--great farmer's market on Sat and Sun a short walk from the Hilton. All in all a very good cruise. Happy to answer any more questions. Pat
  12. pacmom

    Snake & Columbia River Cruise

    We leave Saturday to go Vancouver to Spokane. Will report back on the excursions and the hop on hop off. Really looking forward to the trip. Pat
  13. pacmom

    Viking river cruises not friendly to groups?

    Are you working with a TA? If so this is something they should be helping with. If thru Viking, you should also have an agent there. We also like to come in a day early to get over jet lag. For this reason we tend to do our own air, but there are only 2 of us, not 22. There are some lines that will transport you as long as you are at the airport when they are picking up. Seems a lot of lugging luggage and back and forth. If my memory serves, the "airport" hotels are in a small village adjacent to the airport. Maybe it would be better to arrive the day of and hang out in the lounge of the boat. That first day is usually quiet. Good luck and please let us know how it works out.
  14. pacmom

    Review is late, but hope to get it posted soon.

    Prayers for your recovery. My Dad lived for 20 years with one kidney--removed because of a cancerous tumor. Pat
  15. pacmom

    Suggestions for line

    Also if this is your first river cruise, I would suggest a 7 day cruise with land days on either end. 3weeks can be a monumental commitment if 2 days into it you find this is not what I want. I agree that you need to look at lines that offer no single supplement. We have traveled on all the lines mentioned and really like AMA Waterways and Uniworld. Good luck and keep asking questions. Pat