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About roothy123

  • Rank
    5,000+ Club

About Me

  • Location
  • Interests
    photography, travel
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Oceania & Viking
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    Santorini is my favorite port, but suggest going out of Fira and exploring the island!
  • If you have a personal or hobby CRUISE or TRAVEL BLOG, include the url here:
    just pics, but see www.pbase.com/roothy123

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  1. I'm not on, or booked on, a Crystal cruise. However, I am curious: Are Crystal ships still sailing? If so, has Crystal (or a parent company, if there is one) announced when they will stop sailing for a while? It seems that just about every other cruise line has stopped, but I haven't read about Crystal, so I wasn't sure of their status.
  2. Oh, I just found this, which gives me more info I didn't have before: https://cruiseradio.net/suspended-or-canceled-sailings-by-cruise-line/?fbclid=IwAR1OoYv5dyermdF-zUCWkGhKXLlzxxiy6IVguQ524BE2-Je4cvEOnchNv7k Are Silver Seas, Seaborn, The World, and Costa part of one of the "big" groups like RCL or Norwegian? Anyone have a list of which lines fall under those big groups and which lines are independent?
  3. Anyone know if any cruise lines have NOT cancelled their cruises right now? A quick view of Marine Traffic a few hours earlier showed me that a surprising number of ships are out at sea "today" (Saturday in North America). However, many may be traveling somewhere to end their cruises, or at sea because a port refused them, or just doing a day or night at sea as initially planned. I saw Silver Muse, Seaborn Encore, Queen Mary 2, The World, Azamara Journey (which I believe will be stopping very soon), Bremen, a Costa ship, a Seven Seas ship (Regent, part of Norwegian family?) and several Princess ships. I don't have any cruise booked for the future right now, but I'm still curious about what each line has decided to do, and if it's an all or nothing decision or if certain itineraries are still going. Is there a thread somewhere with a list of actions taken?
  4. Yes, I usually prefer land based to boat based tours. And going into/out of Picton, you'll likely see some of the same scenery you would see on most of those boat tours. There WAS a hop on hop off (sort of!!) bus that went to a couple wineries, a museum, and some things to see in a nearby city other than Picton. I considered doing that but ruled it out as I'm not a winery lover. Finding something wonderful to see in Picton was a bit challenging for me.
  5. Great picture. Here's my favorite picture. If you buy Rottnest tix in advance, check the cancel policy. If your ship doesn't make it, or gets in late, or immigration clearance takes too long, you may lose money. But the walk down to the ferry terminal wasn't hard (mostly just straight down the road, all level); just (obviously) allow some time. When you get there, keep in mind there are 2 different companies. Some people lined up for the wrong ferry and almost missed theirs. We loved Rottnest Island - took the Explorer Bus around, walked up to both lighthouses, ate meat pies in the bakery. It's a very pretty place. I was a little worried about missing our cruise ship (there 7AM to 4PM) so booked 8:00 & 2:00 ferries. That worked out well. You can buy a ticket from one company for the ride over and another for the ride back from the other company if that works better.
  6. We ended up missing Milford Sound and instead docked at Picton in January. I (on my own) did a cruise (Cougar Line) on one of the boats that deliver packages. I don't think it went to Mistletoe Bay, but it did advertise that it went to "secluded bays" and I found them to be interesting and fun, but not overly fantastic. For the cost, and for something I had to plan with only a day's advance notice, I guess it was worthwhile but certainly not a highlight of my trip. My pictures are on my photo (pbase.com/roothy123) site under the "Picton" gallery. The sheep farm sounds better to me, but obviously, I haven't visited it, so can't say for sure how it would compare with one of the many cruises that are offered (mail boats, package delivery boats, boats to Captain Cook monument site, etc.) The good news is that Picton itself is a pretty, well-kept place. You can spend a half day there walking around taking pictures (if that interests you), eating lunch (kind of pricey), etc. Some kind of quirky finds for me off the beaten track were an old church and a thrift store. (New Zealand was colder than I anticipated; bought some longer, heavier pants!) Oh, and the walk back from town is easy - follow the blue line on the streets/sidewalks! A shuttle was offered as well.
  7. I doubt it, although maybe a local can tell you if there's a bus or train near the port (which is right downtown) that you can take if your luggage is light. Auckland airport is quite a distance from downtown Auckland. From my experience, very few ports/cities offer shuttles to their airports. We usually plan on taking a taxi. I'm guessing that in Auckland you will need to take a taxi (usually plenty of them at the ports in most large cities) or if available, arrange for pickup by an Uber/Lyft/local ride share company/private car.
  8. I haven't seen tank tops or sleeveless shirts on men in any restaurant on Viking except in the more casual World Cafe.
  9. I don't think there's a limit time-wise. You could probably do it now. I know both systems are up and running; wouldn't think that with November cruises, it's too early. I just waited until a few weeks pre-cruise in case something happened and I wasn't able to go. They are not exactly cheap travel authorities in my mind.
  10. Don't know about Australian policies, but the ones we've used in the U.S. from U.S. companies rarely cover changes to itineraries, although things get fuzzy when you're talking about a change to your embarkation/disembarkation port. For excursions in between those two port, I'd suggest being very careful to pay up front. I booked an excursion with the rural post man in Akaroa. The ticket was totally non-refundable if the ship didn't make port or if I didn't make it ashore to the meeting spot in time. I was a little nervous, because we skipped a LOT of ports in Australia and NZ on our 2 cruises, but we ended up being fine. But I always keep in mind that we could miss a port, and not book anything that's not refundable unless I'm willing to lose the money. As someone said, cruise lines can and do change ports. I DID lose money on this trip, but given how messed up the 2 cruises became, I decided to just put it behind me and be grateful I didn't lose more than I did (like my health, my life, my spouse, my mind.....)
  11. Oceania has it every night on its (free) dinner buffet. All foods are served to make things more hygienic. Most people appreciate that, but some would rather do traditional buffet style in which you would use a set of tongs and take pieces without having to ask for them. On Oceania the pieces are freshly cut for you right there and you can have as many as you want. My husband says they usually have salmon, tuna, some kind of fish, California roll, shashimi, vegetable rolls, and sometimes shrimp if they are serving it elsewhere that night. Oceania is more expensive than Holland, but their food and service are awesome, and if you compare their prices, I'd suggest comparing the lower priced cabin categories, without the O benefits (free airfare, plus some onboard credit) to get a better idea of cost. Port charges, specialty restaurants, non-alcoholic drinks, and wifi are included, but tips, alcohol, excursions are not. The prices may be a little higher also because Oceania's itineraries tend to be port-intensive, so they often have more port charges to pay than other lines. Viking is a great choice, too, with almost as good food and service, but I feel it's a little more expensive than Oceania, all things considered. But of course it depends upon what people like and will use. For example, we don't drink, so we don't care if the alcohol costs or doesn't cost.
  12. It's funny, because I don't remember a lift-up desk drawer in the desk on Oceania ships. But we usually get an inside cabin, and maybe they had different desks. In any case, I found the desks on Viking Ocean to be partly-annoying in that respect, as you had to keep part of the desk top clear so you could open the drawer to reveal the thin desk drawer below. But I loved the same desk because it had a number of partitioned cubbyholes, rather than being a wide open drawer. I liked being able to put little things there like camera memory cards, thumb drives, and earrings without having to worry about them getting lost in the drawer. I suppose some people also liked the fact that there was a makeup mirror underneath the lift-up drawer, but I never used it.
  13. We found plenty of room for our month of clothing. However, if you need a tiny bit more, and you're not a short person, there's a small space (triangular shelf) above the large cabinet to the side of the area with the safe. In our inside cabin it was to the right of the safe/jacket/shirt area we're talking about, and above the open cabinet where I put my camera bag and my spouse occasionally put his backpack. It's where our cabin steward stored the plastic thing that goes on the bottom third of the bed on embarkation day so people can put luggage there to unpack. (Sorry, I don't know what to call that!) I think the cloth one that the stewards put on the bed every morning is usually stored there too.) My husband moved those things and we put our hats up there (Australian hat with wide brim, sun hat, etc.) It was a nice little cubbyhole for weird items like that which we didn't expect to use a lot but didn't want to put in suitcases under the bed or in v-shaped cabinet. That v-shaped compartment is great for holding things like backpacks/camera bags, etc., but I suppose you could put some folded clothes in there, too, if you wanted.
  14. My photos are here: www.pbase.com/roothy123 Bali should be the first "gallery" you see. Push "all" to see all pages. Obviously, you won't have nearly the same amount of time I did, so can't see a lot of what I saw. However, maybe it will give you an idea or two.
  15. If by chance you're going to western Australia on that world cruise, check to see if Exmouth is on your itinerary. If it is, google it for diving. Original poster - We ended up using the Dewa driver mentioned above and had a great time, plus it was less expensive than what the ship offered that day for passengers already on the ship from the previous cruise. We especially loved Jatiluwih Rice Terraces and Sangeh Monkey Forest. These places do require some driving from the port area, but may be doable. Dewa is from Ubud, not far from either place, and has experience driving cruisers around. If you think these places may interest you, email him and ask if they're doable in a day. Do you know if you're anchoring/tendering in? That takes a little time. He, or another good driver, may be able to suggest places to go - but giving the driver an idea of what interests you would make it easier. There are temples (some famous, some not, all somewhat similar), waterfalls, rice fields, monkey preserves, Setia Darma Mask/Puppet Museum, a large cultural center not terribly far from Benoa, Sanur and its beaches, a daytime dance/performance in Batubulan, pretty interesting temple not far away in Batuan, water sports at the not-too-far beach area of Tanjung Benoa, etc. There is really not much at all right near the port or in the small terminal, so I'd recommend doing a little research, running it by a driver, and then being flexible once you're in Bali.
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