Cunard Queen Victoria

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#1
11 Posts
Joined Jul 2017
Greetings. I will be cruising Western Med early September and would appreciate comments concerning organized excursions - which seem expensive. My previous cruise experience allowed me to team up with other cruisers at the gangplank and share taxis to beaches/ stations etc. Your thoughts.........
Thanks
#2
Vale of Glamorgan
3,461 Posts
Joined Aug 2007
Have you joined your roll call ? You might be able to make arrangements ahead of time.
If you share your ports of call, we might be able to make some suggestions.
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#4
Vale of Glamorgan
3,461 Posts
Joined Aug 2007
What date are you sailing ?
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#6
Hampshire, England
1,532 Posts
Joined Mar 2008
Originally posted by Smike0042
Greetings. I will be cruising Western Med early September and would appreciate comments concerning organized excursions - which seem expensive. My previous cruise experience allowed me to team up with other cruisers at the gangplank and share taxis to beaches/ stations etc. Your thoughts.........
Thanks
Good morning Smike.

I keep an open mind regarding ship's excursions and have little time for those who continually pooh-pooh them out of hand.

The bottom line is really all about what you want to visit while in a port of call and, if you can't really afford the ship's excursion, what is the alternative.

The fact remains that ship's excursions are reasonably well organised, you get a decent local guide to explain the pertinent and interesting points and there is always a variety of excursions to suit most needs.

Of course there are destinations where it is both economical and convenient to take the DIY approach. Dubrovnik, Venice and Gibraltar spring to mind.

There are also cases where one can take a tour where the cost far exceeds anything on the ship's excursion list. This one springs to mind from Livorno...

https://solentrichardscruiseblog.com...i-rum-edition/

As Hattie suggests, give us the names of the ports and we can make some suggestions.
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#7
Vale of Glamorgan
3,461 Posts
Joined Aug 2007
Originally posted by Smike0042
Hi Hattie,
Sailing from Venice on 9th September. Thanks again.
Mike
Your roll call is here, it looks like you have already found it.

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2416597
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#8
Vale of Glamorgan
3,461 Posts
Joined Aug 2007
Originally posted by Solent Richard
Good morning Smike.

I keep an open mind regarding ship's excursions and have little time for those who continually pooh-pooh them out of hand.

The bottom line is really all about what you want to visit while in a port of call and, if you can't really afford the ship's excursion, what is the alternative.

The fact remains that ship's excursions are reasonably well organised, you get a decent local guide to explain the pertinent and interesting points and there is always a variety of excursions to suit most needs.

Of course there are destinations where it is both economical and convenient to take the DIY approach. Dubrovnik, Venice and Gibraltar spring to mind.

There are also cases where one can take a tour where the cost far exceeds anything on the ship's excursion list. This one springs to mind from Livorno...

https://solentrichardscruiseblog.com...i-rum-edition/

As Hattie suggests, give us the names of the ports and we can make some suggestions.
Richard,
You might want to check your link, I don't think Wadi Rum is offered as an excursion from Livorno !
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#9
Hampshire, England
1,532 Posts
Joined Mar 2008
Originally posted by Host Hattie
Richard,
You might want to check your link, I don't think Wadi Rum is offered as an excursion from Livorno !
Good morning Hattie.

Thanks for pointing that out: whatever came over me?

Here is the link to a 'Private' tour we took to Pisa and Livorno from Livorno...

https://solentrichardscruiseblog.com...ence-and-pisa/





(the Wadi Rum tour was also a privately arranged tour offering more time at the destination than the ship's tour did)
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#10
Chester, UK
1,406 Posts
Joined Apr 2011
Last week on our cruise we only booked 1 ship's excursion (and not at cheap one at $170 each). And it got canceled. Thanks for that. Maybe that's another reason I was not overly happy about the cruise in general.
#11
3,507 Posts
Joined Sep 2008
Originally posted by ToadOfToadHall
Last week on our cruise we only booked 1 ship's excursion (and not at cheap one at $170 each). And it got canceled. Thanks for that. Maybe that's another reason I was not overly happy about the cruise in general.
Very likely cancelled because not enough passengers booked, because it cost so much.

Good result for you though, probably.

David
#12
Chester, UK
1,406 Posts
Joined Apr 2011
Originally posted by balf
Very likely cancelled because not enough passengers booked, because it cost so much.

Good result for you though, probably.

David
That's what they said.

The thing with the majority of excursions is that they are you basically being dragged round from one musty old church to the next, on the coach, everybody off, walk round, back on the coach etc.

This was Truffle Hunting at an Italian farmhouse - it looked really good and something different. I suppose when you look at the passenger age profile, how much take up for this type of thing will there actually be ? Not enough it would seem. But then if that's the case, why did Cunard bother to offer it ?

But I can't see how it was a good result for me ?
#13
Vale of Glamorgan
3,461 Posts
Joined Aug 2007
Originally posted by ToadOfToadHall
Last week on our cruise we only booked 1 ship's excursion (and not at cheap one at $170 each). And it got canceled. Thanks for that. Maybe that's another reason I was not overly happy about the cruise in general.

How much notice did they give you that it was cancelled ? I don't think that's ever happened to us although we did have a time change once.

It's a good reminder to have a back up plan though.
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#14
Chester, UK
1,406 Posts
Joined Apr 2011
Originally posted by Host Hattie
How much notice did they give you that it was cancelled ? I don't think that's ever happened to us although we did have a time change once.

It's a good reminder to have a back up plan though.
When we arrived on day 1 the tickets were waiting for us. So I foolish assumed that because they had given us the tickets, it was going ahead.

Then with 3 days to go we had a letter saying it had been cancelled. But they graciously offered us a whopping $5 off per person if we booked another excursion. I could hardly contain my excitement at their unbridled generosity.

I'd booked a trip (and not a cheap one), it was then cancelled. I don't see why I should have had a plan B in place.
#15
Vale of Glamorgan
3,461 Posts
Joined Aug 2007
Originally posted by ToadOfToadHall

I'd booked a trip (and not a cheap one), it was then cancelled. I don't see why I should have had a plan B in place.
That was more for the OP, I'm not sure how often cancellations happen,it's just something to consider.
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#17
229 Posts
Joined Jan 2006
I've had some wonderful Cunard excursions -- amazing tours in St. Petersburg, in Egypt, in Stockholm, in Delft, in Normandy . . . then there was the excursion from Kiel where the new grocery store was pointed out, or the one in Herculaneum where nobody could hear the guide . . . but overall, in our 10+ Cunard cruises, I think they've been very good. None have ever been cancelled. Also, the shorter ones (4 hours or less) tend to better. In the longer ones, the later stops seem rushed and the presentations become lackluster.

The variety of excursions has definitely decreased in the past few years, not sure why. Cunard could do with some more creative excursion planning.
#18
Hampshire, England
1,532 Posts
Joined Mar 2008
Originally posted by castlewood
I've had some wonderful Cunard excursions -- amazing tours in St. Petersburg, in Egypt, in Stockholm, in Delft, in Normandy . . . then there was the excursion from Kiel where the new grocery store was pointed out, or the one in Herculaneum where nobody could hear the guide . . . but overall, in our 10+ Cunard cruises, I think they've been very good. None have ever been cancelled. Also, the shorter ones (4 hours or less) tend to better. In the longer ones, the later stops seem rushed and the presentations become lackluster.

The variety of excursions has definitely decreased in the past few years, not sure why. Cunard could do with some more creative excursion planning.
And a few new itineraries please to encourage me to cruise with them 'more often'.
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#19
11 Posts
Joined Jul 2017
Good afternoon.
Would appreciate guidance regarding best/closest beaches and taxi traveling times for the following ports of call:
KOTOR/MONTENEGRO
CORFU
CAGLIARI

With thanks,
MIke F
#20
Muscat/Oman and Sydney/Australia
797 Posts
Joined May 2011
Originally posted by Smike0042
Good afternoon.
Would appreciate guidance regarding best/closest beaches and taxi traveling times for the following ports of call:
KOTOR/MONTENEGRO
CORFU
CAGLIARI

With thanks,
MIke F

Kotor: First and foremost, make sure that you are on your balcony / on deck a good two HOURS before arrival! The cruise through the "fjord" into Kotor harbor is beautiful. Don't miss it!
Kotor town is gorgeous a bit like Dubrovnik, but everything costs only 1/3rd. Its well worth to wander the streets for an hour or two. There is a cathedral with some mummified saint lady. Creepy!
By the dock side there will be many taxi drivers holding up signs with pictures of the sights they can show you on private tours. Cant remember the prices, but well below what our ship charged for the same sort of thing. Find a driver you like and go for it. The drive over the mountains is quite wonderful with spectacular views over the bay.
There IS a HoHo bus, but it doesn't go very far. Then again, for the cheap price it could give you a nice introduction of the coast line.

Corfu:
We took the HoHo bus which was a waste of time. Drives yo through the suburbs and there is little of interest. Your ship should have a shuttle to the old town. There will usually be very helpful staff of the local tourist board where the bus drops you off.
The old town is pleasant with decent shopping, if that rocks your boat.
Very easy to walk around. Sooner or later you'll probably find yourself near the old castle. For a few Euro entrance fee you can roam at will. There is a small museum and you can climb all the way up to the top. Careful, its quite a hard climb!
At the port's cruise terminal youll find a small information kiosk where they also sell local tours by taxi. There seemed to be fixed prices for certain tours. Again priced well below our ships tours and with the added bonus of having a car for yourself. Just about everybody speaks English and German or French wont be a problem either.

Cagliari:
Never been there. :-(