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Dalton51

***Please tell me about your Spain cruise***

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We are looking into taking a cruise to Spain on the Vista. Will you please tell me how you liked Spain?

 

We have never been and it will be something new for us. We have only sailed the Caribbean multiple times. Time for a change.

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We lived there for 13 years. Some interesting sightseeing but most a few hours from the coast. Which Ports are on the itinerary?

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HI all!

 

Dalton51 ~ I just came back from the Epic which did Morocco, 2 Canary Islands plus Malaga. The cruise started in Barcelona, a place I've been about 4 times & will go back to, so much to see there, lovely city. I've also been to Cadiz. IMO Spain is great!

 

Where are you going? Being on Vista there'll also be a lot to do, looking so forward to that ship!

 

~ Jo ~ :)

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Are there any nice beaches over there or is it mostly sight seeing?

 

There are beaches near the port.

We went on a Med cruise in 2013 with Disney. We loved Barcelona. We're going on the Vista Med cruise in May.

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Spain will have more sightseeing than the Caribbean. Barcelona is a great city. Palma has beaches and also sightseeing. We went on a cruise that had those ports and thought it was great. We are thinking of a cruise with more Spain ports (Cadiz, Malaga, Alicante) this summer.

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What should one expect when cruising to Spain? Compared to the Caribbean?

 

There is a HUGE difference other being on a cruise ship which is about the same any place.Before I go any further let me ask if you have been to Europe any place abroad before?? Cruising there is nothing like the Caribe. I suggest you do some reading on the boards of your ports and get a guide book to help you.

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There is a HUGE difference other being on a cruise ship which is about the same any place.Before I go any further let me ask if you have been to Europe any place abroad before?? Cruising there is nothing like the Caribe. I suggest you do some reading on the boards of your ports and get a guide book to help you.

 

Never been before... We have sailed everywhere in the Caribbean. We want something different. Have always wanted to go to Spain. I am just trying to figure out what there is to do once we get their and the vibe of the cruise ship.

 

Thanks for the help.

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What month of the year are you looking at? That can make a lot of difference here.

 

Don't forget, unlike the Caribbean, the native language is not English. Some people do speak some English but not all.

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It's a Mediterranean cruise you're doing, not really a cruise to Spain. The only mainland Spanish port you're visiting is Barcelona. Palma de Mallorca is the capital of the island of Mallorca and, while Spanish, has a very different feel to Barcelona. Mallorca is probably your best place for lovely beaches but this is not going to be a beach holiday, it is more about sightseeing. Many people will take the chance to visit the ruins of Pompeii or Herculaneum near Naples, although you could take a boat to the island of Capri or have a scenic drive along the Amalfi Coast. From Livorno, most people will visit Florence for the art and architecture.

 

If you have a particular interest in Spain, you're going to see hardly any of it with this itinerary. You might be better off doing a land vacation.

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What month of the year are you looking at? That can make a lot of difference here.

 

Don't forget, unlike the Caribbean, the native language is not English. Some people do speak some English but not all.

 

We are looking at first week in June. Thanks a ton for the help.

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It's a Mediterranean cruise you're doing, not really a cruise to Spain. The only mainland Spanish port you're visiting is Barcelona. Palma de Mallorca is the capital of the island of Mallorca and, while Spanish, has a very different feel to Barcelona. Mallorca is probably your best place for lovely beaches but this is not going to be a beach holiday, it is more about sightseeing. Many people will take the chance to visit the ruins of Pompeii or Herculaneum near Naples, although you could take a boat to the island of Capri or have a scenic drive along the Amalfi Coast. From Livorno, most people will visit Florence for the art and architecture.

 

If you have a particular interest in Spain, you're going to see hardly any of it with this itinerary. You might be better off doing a land vacation.

 

Thanks a ton for the help. We don't really care if it's Spain or not. We are just looking for something different. We figured it wouldn't be a beach vacation. We just are lost because tha's all we have done and we know what to expect.

 

How is that Itinerary? We just don't want to spend 6,000 and hate it. We are down for sight seeing and maybe a beach here or there but mostly we know i will be sight seeing.

 

Thanks again everyone for all the help. We are trying to do our home work on this before we book something we are unsure of.

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Thanks a ton for the help. We don't really care if it's Spain or not. We are just looking for something different. We figured it wouldn't be a beach vacation. We just are lost because tha's all we have done and we know what to expect.

 

How is that Itinerary? We just don't want to spend 6,000 and hate it. We are down for sight seeing and maybe a beach here or there but mostly we know i will be sight seeing.

 

Thanks again everyone for all the help. We are trying to do our home work on this before we book something we are unsure of.

 

You really have to do some reading here and on Trip Advisor as well as a cruise guide book so you know what you are going to see once you get to a port and want to see the sights.You cannot just get off the ship and pick up a tour unless you want a non english speaking taxi driver take you around for a huge sum of money. There are a lot of posts re private tours and you can check your roll call too. You will have to get Euros which you can do from ATM's...lots to learn.

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You really have to do some reading here and on Trip Advisor as well as a cruise guide book so you know what you are going to see once you get to a port and want to see the sights.You cannot just get off the ship and pick up a tour unless you want a non english speaking taxi driver take you around for a huge sum of money. There are a lot of posts re private tours and you can check your roll call too. You will have to get Euros which you can do from ATM's...lots to learn.

 

Thanks you. Thanks again for the help.

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Thanks a ton for the help. We don't really care if it's Spain or not. We are just looking for something different. We figured it wouldn't be a beach vacation. We just are lost because tha's all we have done and we know what to expect.

 

How is that Itinerary? We just don't want to spend 6,000 and hate it. We are down for sight seeing and maybe a beach here or there but mostly we know i will be sight seeing.

 

Thanks again everyone for all the help. We are trying to do our home work on this before we book something we are unsure of.

 

Pick up a copy of Rick Steves' Mediterranean Ports guides. It has all your ports. It will give you an idea of what are the options to do and see for each port. Some like Palma are easy to do on your own...and some are more difficult where you might prefer an excursion either through the cruise ship or a smaller group set up with roll call groups.

 

What are your embarkation port and disembarkation ports? Be sure to spend some days in each if they are different.

 

As everyone has said, cruising the Med is very different than the Caribbean. It's more about trying to cram what you think is your one shot at Europe (and some of the most important sites in the world) into a short amount of time. For example, Rome is about an hour from the port....if it's just a port stop, you'll find yourself trying to see the Coliseum, the Vatican and everything in between in a day and still have to get back to the ship on time. That is hugely different from a lazy, take a float trip excursion in the Caribbean type day.

 

That said..it probably won't be your last shot at the sites...Europe is addicting.:)

.

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Dalton..check this out... http://www.carnival.com/shore-excursions

my guess is that your looking at the 6/3 Vista sailing? We were faced with same situation, have cruised exclusive in the Caribbean, East/West Coast.

 

As mentioned check out tour books, other travel sites as well as the Carnival link above. It will give great insight as to what to anticipate. Initially, we thougt it would be great to hit a beach in the Med, after planning for many months we have somewhat crossed that off the list and we've found nothing convenient as well as so much other to see. We're going to need a vacation after this one to recover:eek: Fortunately, most in our group will have 2-3 days after we return before going back to work. Good luck. :):

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Dalton..check this out... http://www.carnival.com/shore-excursions

my guess is that your looking at the 6/3 Vista sailing? We were faced with same situation, have cruised exclusive in the Caribbean, East/West Coast.

 

As mentioned check out tour books, other travel sites as well as the Carnival link above. It will give great insight as to what to anticipate. Initially, we thougt it would be great to hit a beach in the Med, after planning for many months we have somewhat crossed that off the list and we've found nothing convenient as well as so much other to see. We're going to need a vacation after this one to recover:eek: Fortunately, most in our group will have 2-3 days after we return before going back to work. Good luck. :):

 

Thanks for posting Cruisinlawn!! Carnival only does the Med when they launch a new ship...so for frequent Carnival cruisers the Med is a new experience. You said it best.

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Our first Med cruise was where I learned the full power of CC. Planning for this trip was almost as much fun as the trip itself.

 

For us the cruise was a floating hotel and while it's always a pleasure it was a tool and not the mainstay.

 

I looked at it like an "appetizer platter" for Western Europe, and planned each port day like it would be my last. Some ports were full and busy (Pompeii, country tour, Amalfi coast in Naples), others not so much (Bus tour in am, Sangria on a patio all afternoon, followed by a walk back to the ship along Las Ramblas in Barcelona)

 

Of course it won't be my last (not if I can help it) but it was an amazing vacation.

 

This approach does not suit everyone, but it sure did suit us!

 

I started by reading member reviews for similar itineraries, and port threads. The "what we did" posts were most helpful. Then I narrowed down what we would find interesting, and either booked private tours, or loosely planned a DIY day. (see Toms Port Guides)

 

Joining the Roll Call was also invaluable, as we joined some private tours others had organized, and once I felt comfortable, organized a couple myself.

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Our first Med cruise was where I learned the full power of CC. Planning for this trip was almost as much fun as the trip itself.

 

For us the cruise was a floating hotel and while it's always a pleasure it was a tool and not the mainstay.

 

I looked at it like an "appetizer platter" for Western Europe, and planned each port day like it would be my last. Some ports were full and busy (Pompeii, country tour, Amalfi coast in Naples), others not so much (Bus tour in am, Sangria on a patio all afternoon, followed by a walk back to the ship along Las Ramblas in Barcelona)

 

Of course it won't be my last (not if I can help it) but it was an amazing vacation.

 

This approach does not suit everyone, but it sure did suit us!

 

I started by reading member reviews for similar itineraries, and port threads. The "what we did" posts were most helpful. Then I narrowed down what we would find interesting, and either booked private tours, or loosely planned a DIY day. (see Toms Port Guides)

 

Joining the Roll Call was also invaluable, as we joined some private tours others had organized, and once I felt comfortable, organized a couple myself.

 

 

Well stated, we concur. Few years back when we were ready to pull the trigger on a Carnival sailing in the Med, they pulled the ship out:(. It was only there couple of years. When we started looking at Vista it was a done deal. Got a great rate on a new ship. Funny thing is, we're already looking when we can get back on Vista once it is home ported in FLA. We figure we'll have very little time to explore the ship. Like you, it'll be our hotel and dining venue.

 

This is our first, and hopefully not last, trip across the pond. With that stated, we're going to live it like there is no tomorrow. We'll recover, lol. Enjoy:)

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With that stated, we're going to live it like there is no tomorrow. We'll recover, lol. Enjoy:)

 

Now THAT is well said :)

 

You know you're on a European cruise when Sea Days are a godsend!!! :D :D

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Now THAT is well said :)

 

You know you're on a European cruise when Sea Days are a godsend!!! :D :D

 

yep, similar to a port intensive Southern Caribbean sailing. Although with many of those ports you can become a beach bum:cool: For our European itinerary, we have 8-9hr tour days for 4 straight days, skip a day then our last port we'll spend the day 6hrs on a sailboat however relaxing. Enjoy. :)

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For our European itinerary, we have 8-9hr tour days for 4 straight days, skip a day then our last port we'll spend the day 6hrs on a sailboat however relaxing. Enjoy. :)

 

You will find that Europeans cruising the Mediterranean are far less likely to do long day tours than American passengers - city tours are far too intensive and you only have a few minutes at most places so we tend to use local public transport and see just what interests us at our own pace. Personally, no way could I cope with 4 x 8-9 hour trips - and I am sure that, for me, I would find everywhere blending into one place - so I would decide on a couple of places where a tour benefits and do my own thing the alternate days - I am not criticizing cruisinlawns itinerary, just giving my personal opinion.

 

By the way, remember that Europeans do not tip anywhere near as much as visitors from the US and it high gratuities are not expected here.

Edited by campolady

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By the way, remember that Europeans do not tip anywhere near as much as visitors from the US and it high gratuities are not expected here.

 

I am glad you mention this. How much should we anticipate tipping:confused: We'll have a guide and driver in some places and only a guide in others. We'll also have a personal guide when visiting the Vatican.

 

And you are correct, we're concerned that it may all seem to blend so we may adjust/change plans on the fly and have confirmed whom we'll be touring with that this is doable. Thanks for the insight :)

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