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About kej1

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    SF, Calif.
  • Interests
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Seabourn and Silver Sea
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    Exotic locales

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  1. My husband and I are sitting on our deck in San Francisco watching the Mariner cruise by. Seems like it’s on its way to Los Angeles. It looks so lovely cruising along the bay. Looking forward to the day when we can safely cruise again!
  2. Oceania Regatta just cruised by our home on Russian Hill in San Francisco. It appears from the marine website to be heading for Oakland. i don’t know where it’s been but the last cruise ship we saw go by was Princess on its way in and out of Oakland some time ago. It ended up overnighting here on its way out after they dropped the passengers. I’m curious if anyone knows what Regatta is doing here? It is a gorgeous day so the ship looks lovely motoring along on the blue bay with bright blue skies, but I assume no passengers are on it.
  3. The spa staff do not work directly for Seabourn, but for a company that subcontracts. Part of their compensation includes gratuities. ( should you think they have done a good job). I think it’s acceptable to leave 10%-20% depending on the quality of your service and your country’s norm. But if course it’s up to the individual based on the service you receive!
  4. I am also a target for the bugs! If you are doing the type of excursions you mention I would take the malaria tablets and use lots of Deet. My husband always says he can likely forgo them when traveling with me as I will surely keep them away from him! Having said that he took them too just in case. Have a great trip! I’m sure you will enjoy! Kim
  5. Stephen, My husband and I just got home from the first leg of the Seabourn World Cruise which included the African ports you mention. We are US citizens so maybe it’s different than the UK but we did it need to get any visas in advance for these countries. Seabourn offered those needed on board for a price. I believe the only ones we needed were Gambia, Ghana, and Angola ( which was at no cost). I think Gambia and Ghana were about $85 each. We used dollars everywhere and hired quite a few private guides on our own in advance. They all wanted dollars. If you were going to use local taxis not arranged in advance or bargain to buy goods you might need to change some local currency. We did take Malaria tablets but really they were only needed in the game parks we did following the cruise in the Sabi Sands. Malaria really depends on the time of year, the weather, and the location. We have been to Africa by land many times and in their winter ( our summer) we see no bugs. In Southern Africa in the Sabi Sands and Kruger in feb it is hot, humid, and there are bugs so best to take the tablets. However they weren’t really needed in Senegal, Gambia, Ghana O.R. Namibia. Namibia notbnecessary in the desert areas as no malaria, but the others depends on time of year. Above the equator it was the dry season. As we got further south- eg Angola it was hot and there were some bugs at the port. And of course they are not needed at all in Capetown. Overall we really enjoyed the trip. Having been all over Eastern, Northern and Southern Africa by land, we had always wanted to visit West Africa and thought the best way to do it was by ship. I can confirm that is the case excluding Namibia which we had also done by land previously. it is advisable not to use credit cards in most west Africa ports except in major hotels. Namibia and South Africa are exceptions. The Gambia being British would likely take pounds but not sure about the coins. I advise bringing cash in small denominations. Let me know if you have additional questions. I hope this helps!
  6. I have been on PHSS on both Soujourn/Quest Class and Ovation. On the Sojourn/Quest they are very good sized. There is the spiral staircase and no elevator so anyone with mobility issues would have a problem. We have seen several people really struggle going up and down the stairs, particularly if it’s bumpy. Yes in bumpy weather you feel it and more so on the corners, but it doesn’t bother us. We love the corners, but the two middles suites are larger and the balconies more protected from the wind. Also don’t quite feel as much motion. People we have met in the middles suites prefer for these reasons. We had a corner PHSS on Ovation and were quite disappointed. It does not have the wrap around glass and in fact relatively small amount of window space considering the design of the room. They also place the couch in a place where you can’t see out the window at all. We moved it underneath the tv so we could see out the relatively small window and door. Having said that the balcony is great and does wrap around, but when it’s really windy you can’t always use it. If we were to have this category suite on Ovation or Encore again I think I’d go for the middle. The one good thing is there is an elevator so no worries about the spiral staircase. But again like the others you do still feel the motion of the ship. So people who this bothers won’t like much. i hope this is helpful!
  7. I would have it unless you have auto immune issues. Or you will need to get a note from your doctor stating you cannot have fore medical issues.
  8. We are US citizens. We contacted Seabourn and their recommended visa service. After much confusion from both, a Seabourn mgmt employee said it was not needed for US citizen as we were not overnighting. If you are referring to the upcoming first segment of the world cruise in January, we were told as follows for US citizens: Cape Verde and Cote D’Ivorie - not needed as not overnighting Senagal - not needed gambia - required but can buy on board ghana -needed but can buy on board angola - can obtain on board at no cost namibia and South Africa - not needed but we knew this from past land trips I would suggest checking with someone sr at Seabourn as the above is for US citizen.
  9. We are currently in Alaska in a Penthouse Spa suite and very happy. I think either side aft would be great. We are going Seward to Vancouver. It’s been a great cruise so far. Very happy!
  10. I like the Mandarin Oriental.
  11. kej1

    Neet's Bay

    Thank you for the feedback. It sounds interesting!
  12. kej1

    Neet's Bay

    Has anyone done the excursion from Ketchikan to see the bears at Neet's Bay? What did you think? We will be in Ketchikan on Aug. 3rd.
  13. I will third that and include many more years of land travel. The Seabourn Antarctica Cruise was one of our best trips ever.
  14. You must go on the zodiacs to see polar bears. Views from zodiacs much better in general. We did not do any ship excursions in Canada other than the zodiacs for the Canadian Arctic islands. We hired a private guide for Quebec and had been to Montreal previously so just stayed a couple of days on our own. The other ports were small and we walked everywhere on our own.
  15. We were also on this cruise in August and loved it. I highly recommend all the Zodiac tours, especially to see the Polar Bears on Lady Franklin and Monumental Island. We also loved the glacial zodiac trip in Ilulisat, and did a fun excursion through the fjords by by boat in Nuuk, the capital of Greenland. It is an expedition cruise and we had many if the same great team members we had met on our Antarctica cruise. If this is what you are looking for you will have a wonderful time! Even saw the Northern Lights one night in Arctic Canada!
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