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Silver Machine

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About Silver Machine

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    Nantwich, England
  • Interests
    Cruises, travel, reading, walking, cycling, outdoor pursuits generally
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    P & O
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
  1. Silver Machine

    Oman Day tours

    I think you can book Oman Day Tours with confidence. They come very highly recommended by Trip Advisor and so we decided to book with them. I had very many questions which Sarah, the Operations Manager, dealt with quickly and efficiently. I even chatted with her via her website and she was very helpful, effective and left me in no doubt as to what to expect. We're about to go on a cruise which will visit Salalah and we will do the East and West Salalah excursion with them. I'm sure that we're in for a very good time, judging from what I've experienced so far. They seem to be a highly reputable and professional company so I would say that you will be more than OK to book with them. Their prices compare very favourably with those offered by the cruise lines. :) Best wishes, Pauline About to embark on Splendour of the Seas 28/11/15
  2. My husband and I just celebrated our 30th wedding anniversary in St Petersburg and took a private tour with TJ Travel. I cannot recommend them more highly enough. If you're going to St Petersburg and want a private tour, then look no further! We were met off the ship by two friendly faces, one was our tour guide Polina and the other was the owner of TJ Travel, Tatiana. From that moment on, everything went so smoothly it was like clockwork. We did the two day tour and there were only 6 of us the first day and 4 of us the second! We were treated like royalty! The first day, we had a sightseeing orientation around this beautiful city in our lovely air-conditioned Mercedes mini-van, followed by a river tour so that we could see St Petersburg from the sea and then we managed to see the Hermitage before it opened. We were literally in the rooms on our own! What a wonderful wedding anniversary present that was to see the Hermitage without anyone in the rooms apart from us. Our guide couldn't be faulted ... she was the best tour guide leader we have ever had and her enthusiasm for St Petersburg was really infectious. At the end of the two days, we felt that we had really got to know this beautiful city and its people. There was nothing we could suggest to her that TJ Travel could possibly improve on. We ate two four course Russian lunches, including drinks - Strogonoff the first day and Borsch soup and Chicken Kiev the next day. We got to see Catherine's Palace, Peter and Paul Fortress, Peterhof, Yusopov Palace, Church of the Spilled Blood, St Isaac's Cathedral and a few other places which we showed interest in. We even got to break our itinerary on the first day to visit a souvenir shop (very nice and no pushy sales people!) and they gave us a cup of coffee as it was such an early start (7 am meet). We have NEVER enjoyed a sightseeing tour as much as this one EVER and we are seasoned travellers in our 50s. Comparing our itinerary with the folks on the ship and the hassle free and unbelievable experience we enjoyed made us realise that we were absolutely right to choose TJ Travel and what's more, they are actually cheaper than the ship's tour. Most of the people we spoke to on the ship had to endure huge crowds in the Hermitage and couldn't see what they wanted to see before they were jostled on to the next hall and this was only the start of the season in St Petersburg. I hate to think what it would be like in high season but Polina was clever in manoeuvring us around the tourist attractions to such a great extent that we never experienced any crowding whatsoever. Hats off to Polina and TJ Travel ... they have got this spot on and they really do represent excellent value for money. I have no hesitation in recommending their services to you. They certainly know their stuff. :)
  3. Silver Machine

    Chinese Visa from the UK

    Hi there, Cheapest and easiest way is to go to the chinese consulate with your completed form/passport and then collect it 4 working days after. You need to pay £81 per visa and pay by cash or debit card. This is the way to go. We did the same but had to go to Manchester for ours as we live 30 miles south. Even with our transport up to Manchester, it was cheaper than paying agency fees and special delivery costs. Hope this helps. Pauline
  4. This will be our third cruise - going on Sea Princess ex Montego Bay on Dec 19th for two weeks. We've never been away at Christmas before and we're also celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary. I would like to surprise my hubby by taking our own bottle of champers but I believe you can't take your own alcohol on board ship. Is there any way round this - on previous cruises we've been happy to buy from the bars but hubby was made redundant in March and with the economy tight, we're on a budget now. Appreciate any help/advice/tips. Many thanks, Pauline :)