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BasandSyb

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  • Content Count

    169
  • Joined

About BasandSyb

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    Australia
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Seabourn and Paul Gauguin
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    French Polynesia

Recent Profile Visitors

165 profile views
  1. Thanks again Fletcher. We read this live and thoroughly enjoyed it. We are doing South Georgia next year with Seabourn so the recent refresh of this blog was very welcome. Noting your South Pacific sojourn we can highly recommend the Paul Gauguin. We have done the 14 day Marquesas trip 5 times, their Cooks run twice and back from Australia twice. Perhaps we are biased. Enjoy.
  2. How fabulous. He’s great. Thanks for the update.
  3. You are correct SLSD - it was Topaz88 on roll calls doing the train. My mistake - long day.
  4. Lovely photos. Looks like you had a smashing day. Love the faces. We heard about this quirky shrine but didn’t get there. You are correct about Fushimi Inari, it’s nuts with tourists for the first little walk, but then they all fall away. We have so many shots of avenues of gates with no one around and stopped at many of the shrines on the way up the mountain. Agree with you it’s all about peace and contemplation. Hope your Kobe transfer goes smoothly. Did you decide to transfer your luggage? Off for some Kobe beef tonight. Safe travels.
  5. Who hoo. Had him at Christmas and he was fabulous!
  6. Looks like you had a fab day. We also looked at Chris Rowthorn tours but changed our mind.and decided freestyle given our inclusion of a number of day trips over several days and wanting to work around possible weather issues. His tours looked to be very good. Enjoy.
  7. Hi SLSD Enjoy Kyoto we were there again yesterday (25mins on the train from Osaka) and did a few more temples and the Nishiki Markets (a must!) - try the seafood skewers and the very large fresh oysters - we have never seen them that size and at first thought they were conch shells. If you like oysters the massive ones are about $13AU each and Jumbos about $10 each. The Fushimi Inari temple is also a must see with the thousands of orange Tori gates.You can gently climb the hill, Mt Inari though the gates (mainly steps, but all paved) it’s 233 metres to the shrine on the top, an hour up and an hour back or just walk through the bottom section - a bit more crowded lower down for obvious reasons. Hopefully the attached pic will work. Have today changed hotels to Kobe - luggage transfer worked perfectly it was waiting for us to check in at 1:15. We have had a terrific several days and have covered a lot of territory with our train pass, walked our feet off and had fantastic food washed down with ice cold beer. its overcast here with 60% chance of showers for the next few days. Hopefully it’s fine for sail away. Enjoy Kyoto.
  8. Our experience is it depends on the itinerary and the nationalities on board. Generalisations to follow, but also our observations... Talking about dress standards in posts against guidelines can be quite different to reality - depending on where you are cruising and the duration. A 7/14 in the Med can be quite different to a 36 day exploration. Longer cruises with more sea days are more casual all round. Colder weather explorer trips like Iceland and SA/Antarctic are the same. Cruises in the heat and humidity/ everyone is just over dressing up for any reason. The ship will sort itself out within its general guidelines. Sometimes a cruise will turn out to be extreme dressing with a large group of like minded pulling out akin to the Crown Jewels and regimental colours. Some nationalities, particularly cooler climate residents are used to full dressing for evening wear. Those from warmer climes seem to enjoy a dress up but then revert to elegant casual - the norm for home. It’s curious to watch the dynamics - people either try and “compete” and don’t feel they are comfortably on holiday or just retreat to the the Club/Colonnade/patio grill on non formal nights. They don’t want the hassle of dressing up but feel elegant casual is down market if they go anywhere near the Observation Bar/ MDR or TKG. We have a chuckle at how the schoolyard peer pressure works itself through. We have tended to dress for TKG because of the norm. For us the food is casual and basic fare and so too should be the dress. It’s only the wait staff floor song and dance routine that tries to upmarket it to a fine dining experience which is unwarranted in our view. But, each to their own. Dress as you will and feel appropriate to the experience of what you see occurring on board and feel comfortable with.
  9. Indeed Koalapanda, Manuel is top of mind. Have sent our cases today - 2 Extra large about 28-30kg each + 1 x 3/4 size under 20kg (yup travelling really light this trip and worried given the heat here - nothing like the av temps quoted) Cost from Osaka to Kobe hotel was $67AU Really takes the thinking out of it.
  10. At topic that interests us aussies also Koalapanda. We too have checked it out previously and for $1500 US + I could pay someone to travel with us to handle the luggage. The Japan experience is so much more sensible.we are currently in Japan pre boarding the Kobe to Vancouver next week. Sending a bag or two home prior to a US driving trip would have been preferable but too ridiculously priced. Will continue to monitor this thread with interest.
  11. Arrived safely. We will be the ones with koala backpacks😎 off for a day a wandering! Safe travels.
  12. Just leaving Sydney on our way now. Hope the weather is kind to us all.
  13. We are on the same trip and have received the barrage of emails which appears standard these days. However, not one was about a jacket. Seems a a bit hit and miss, but I’m sure it’s collateral we could well do without - will probably be overpacked as usual 😀 Hope the poor weather has exhausted itself.
  14. Looking forward to your comments. We had our first Encore trip at Christmas. We have not been interested in trying the larger ships (we are tragics for the 3 little ships - heavy sigh), but the chance to getaway came up. We did have a lovely time and must do a review. I note the cruise reviews prior to ours had a lot of poor comments. Overall, the decision to cruise on her again would be influenced by the itinerary (hot weather O class more deck space) and whether we were travelling with friends (O class). It was very nice and we loved the sushi addition. Some of the layouts were plus (Colonnade stations and second deck, TK Grill and bar, observation bar), some minus (MDR; the retreat; club bar - soon to be rectified). Was very surprised no USBs in the rooms (just a little thing) - thought they had been installed and crawled around for 15 mins doing a search on arrival. Enjoy and please share your views.
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