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Peregrina651

Live from the Western Mediterranean

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Agree. St. Tropez was my least favorite port of the whole cruise and the one I would most like to changed. Port Grimaud needed to be explained better but it still really has nothing to offer-- and if I heard the name Leonardo DiCaprio dropped one more time, I was going to scream. There has got to be more to know about this town than is found on Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous.

 

No I actually quite like St Tropez itself. Port Grimaud is just a manufactured marina and housing development. However the proper town of Grimaud is completely different. We have visited St Tropez in September when Les Voilles de St Tropez Sailing Gala is on. The whole town is buzzing and there are the most beautiful sailing yachts anchored everywhere. The Citadel is interesting, Place des Lice with its boules, plane trees and market is lovely. The US Seventh Army invaded the area around St Tropez in August 1944 and there is a war memorial by the port. I was surprised this was not pointed out during the walking tour.

I would also recommend the local bus service along the coast past Saint Maxime towards Frejus and ending at the interesting town of Saint Raphael. Lovely ride for a couple of Euros.

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No I actually quite like St Tropez itself. Port Grimaud is just a manufactured marina and housing development. However the proper town of Grimaud is completely different. We have visited St Tropez in September when Les Voilles de St Tropez Sailing Gala is on. The whole town is buzzing and there are the most beautiful sailing yachts anchored everywhere. The Citadel is interesting, Place des Lice with its boules, plane trees and market is lovely. The US Seventh Army invaded the area around St Tropez in August 1944 and there is a war memorial by the port. I was surprised this was not pointed out during the walking tour.

I would also recommend the local bus service along the coast past Saint Maxime towards Frejus and ending at the interesting town of Saint Raphael. Lovely ride for a couple of Euros.

 

Now here I'm going to disagree with my lovely friend Mrs Miggins...and that doesn't happen very often because we generally like the same places. I find St Tropez pretentious and boring and I don't even like the shops there and again, that doesn't happen very often! The little harbour is pretty but I really think St Tropez is overrated. Antibes and San Raphael are much nicer....just my opinion of course.

 

Old Grimaud town has very little to commend it to me too...I felt time here was wasted and I wouldn't want to do a trip here again. I was bored, apart from the cemetery and local market not a lot to see here.

 

However, I absolutely loved Port Grimaud and can't wait to go back on my Azamara B2B in June. I found it charming. We did a little boat trip around the pretty Marina and admired the lovely houses, spent some time drinking wine and people watching and saw the older gentlemen of the town playing a pretty competitive game of boules. Then there was an amazing shop with lovely gifts for sale at half the price of St Tropez and much nicer quality. We spent a lot of money there and our best purchase was the delicious dragee type sweets ...they were so good I didn't give them to my work colleagues like I had intended but kept them all for myself. 😋

 

I am really looking forward to just jumping in a taxi to Port Grimaud when we are all in St Tropez next June Pam, but I guess you and M won't be with us that day.

 

Everyone has different likes and dislikes even when they are good friends who cruise together.

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Hi Lottie,

Port Grimaud is definitely better in the summer. Remember we were there on New Years Day. The little boat trips were closed, Most of the shops were closed. The cafe by the bridge was open, but overwhelmed by those on the Viking trip. There were a couple of stalls selling sweets and vegetables. Most of the houses appeared unoccupied. I just think that, bearing in mind the time of year, then the included tour could have found somewhere much nicer. It still reminds me of Disneyland.

I like St Raphael to the east, St Aygulf is nice and I would like to visit the area on the other side of the town too.

We must agree to differ. However I think we both agree that Sanary sur Mer is fantastic !

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Hi Lottie,

Port Grimaud is definitely better in the summer. Remember we were there on New Years Day. The little boat trips were closed, Most of the shops were closed. The cafe by the bridge was open, but overwhelmed by those on the Viking trip. There were a couple of stalls selling sweets and vegetables. Most of the houses appeared unoccupied. I just think that, bearing in mind the time of year, then the included tour could have found somewhere much nicer. It still reminds me of Disneyland.

I like St Raphael to the east, St Aygulf is nice and I would like to visit the area on the other side of the town too.

We must agree to differ. However I think we both agree that Sanary sur Mer is fantastic !

 

Indeed we do Pam, we like Sanary sur Mer, Collioure and perhaps even Barcelona now? 😄

I'm really looking forward to Sete next June as well.

 

Of course Port Grimaud wouldn't be as pleasant in January as it is in the summer. Forgot you were there on NYD and everything would be closed. I do really like it though. If I buy a house there when I win the Lottery will you and M come to stay with me? I will have a private yacht of course. 😄

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Yes of course. We will be there in a heartbeat. Your private yacht can whisk us off to Sanary !

 

It's a deal Pam. 😄

 

Sorry to divert Peregrina's thread. Back to normal sensible replies now!

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Hi Lottie,

Port Grimaud is definitely better in the summer. Remember we were there on New Years Day. The little boat trips were closed, Most of the shops were closed. The cafe by the bridge was open, but overwhelmed by those on the Viking trip. There were a couple of stalls selling sweets and vegetables. Most of the houses appeared unoccupied. I just think that, bearing in mind the time of year, then the included tour could have found somewhere much nicer. It still reminds me of Disneyland.

I like St Raphael to the east, St Aygulf is nice and I would like to visit the area on the other side of the town too.

We must agree to differ. However I think we both agree that Sanary sur Mer is fantastic !

 

Actually, we were in St. Tropez on Sunday, December 31 and it was early in the morning, before the people who were spending their weekend there were up and out for the day--even the big cities are quiet on a Sunday morning. Maybe if we had been there later in the day, we might have gotten a different impression of the enclave and perhaps also if had gotten a better explanation of why it was built, etc.

 

And yes, they drained the swamp to build Disneyland as well, so I love the description.

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Yes of course it was New Year's Eve. We were on a late morning departure. On The quayside in St Tropez they were preparing tables full of snacks and drinks for a local celebration when we got off the tender. We did the short included walk which did not mention the Citadel or US war memorial. We were advised to go up the shopping streets to the main square on our return from Port Grimaud. By the time we returned from the coach trip there, the local celebration was being cleared away. We did visit the local streets and had great croque Monsieur sitting in the sunshine overlooking the lovely square, complete with locals playing boules, a small children's fairground and decorated horse carriages, complete with elves. The area was busy with many locals carrying bags having shopped in sales in the local shops selling linens, throws,cushions etc.

We had an extremely pleasant time. Returned on the excellent ship tender service. Incidentally these tenders are really modern, with glass doors ! Straight to the Wintergarden for afternoon tea.

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NO. Viking does not do currency exchange. You will have to bring euros or even better, get them from an ATM when you arrive. Viking will make change for you if you have too many large bills.

 

DO bring an ATM card with you so that you can get cash along the way. There were a couple of folks on the ship who underestimated their cash needs and were scrounging to get a few more euros (enough for the cab to the hotel). But, they did not want to bring their debit/ATM cards--and to some extend, they were right not to.

 

However, there is a way around it and you may still have time to make it work. Open a second checking account with its own debit/ATM card and seed it with a couple of thousand dollars. Set the retail maximum to $0 so it can't be used as a credit card and set the daily ATM limit to whatever you want. I just go with whatever the bank's limit is. Don't let any of your other accounts be attached to this card.

 

Thank you. We were scammed in Sorrento Italy last year on this cruise at a bank ATM so trying to be very safe. Going to bank Monday!

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Hi Peregrina—it was nice meeting you at the Cruisecritic gathering and thanks for all you did to organize it beforehand!

 

I am laughing about the comments on Port Grimaud — my kids called it the Disney fake town. They left us there for an hour with basically nothing to do and hardly anything open. We would have preferred more time in St. Tropez. I guess it’s better in the summer when there’s more going on!

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Thank you. We were scammed in Sorrento Italy last year on this cruise at a bank ATM so trying to be very safe. Going to bank Monday!

 

We look for bank ATMs inside the bank lobby. So far we have been very lucky and no machine has ever eaten our card.

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Hi Peregrina—it was nice meeting you at the Cruisecritic gathering and thanks for all you did to organize it beforehand!

 

I am laughing about the comments on Port Grimaud — my kids called it the Disney fake town. They left us there for an hour with basically nothing to do and hardly anything open. We would have preferred more time in St. Tropez. I guess it’s better in the summer when there’s more going on!

 

Agreed. Included tour needs a lot of rethinking.

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It's a deal Pam. 😄

 

Sorry to divert Peregrina's thread. Back to normal sensible replies now!

May I divert a little further? We are at St. Tropez now. At 7 am the tender boats were lowered and two hours later they started going back up again as Captain Erik deemed it too unsafe to venture into the town. The winds are gusting up to 30 knots and the seas are a bit choppy. The skies look pretty threatening too. We are presently awaiting news about whether there is a berth available for us in Monte Carlo. Jenna, our wonderful cruise director, just told us that there will now be a lecture in half an hour by Dr. Ed Lynch to keep us occupied in the meantime. This lecture was previously scheduled for this evening. Very nice to rearrange at short notice!

 

So....after all my reading in this thread about St. Tropez, it's all a wash. 😂🤣😅

 

Sent from my SM-G955U using Forums mobile app

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Oh dear! Sorry to hear that. Hope you enjoy the lecture.

Yes we did enjoy the lecture as Dr. Lynch's subject of Monaco was very topical! We are there now, just dropped anchor. Some sheik' s yacht is moored at the spot where we could have been so we have to tender. I expect tomorrow we shall move onto a proper dock as scheduled. We are using today as a sea day as the weather is ugly. The spa will be seeing us later this afternoon! Nothing beats a good sauna on a day like this.

 

Sent from my SM-G955U using Forums mobile app

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Sorry to hear you missed St Tropez due to bad weather, even though it doesn't float my boat! Hope the weather is better for you in Monaco.

I don't know if the HOHO bus runs in the winter, but if it does there is a stop in the port just outside where the ships berth. You could do this on a rainy day. We got off the bus in the Casino Square and had drinks in the Cafe de Paris and then got back on the bus.

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This is when I'm glad Viking Star has the comfortable Explorers Lounge in which to comfortably while away the day when the weather outside is raw!606423c010ab18d3bc0e5e8db9d76c16.jpg

 

Sent from my SM-G955U using Forums mobile app

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For anyone recently on the Star... for arrivals back in Barcelona, did the ship dock close to the scheduled time of 5:30am?

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Sorry to hear you missed St Tropez due to bad weather, even though it doesn't float my boat! Hope the weather is better for you in Monaco.

I don't know if the HOHO bus runs in the winter, but if it does there is a stop in the port just outside where the ships berth. You could do this on a rainy day. We got off the bus in the Casino Square and had drinks in the Cafe de Paris and then got back on the bus.

 

 

It is really a waste of money using the Hop On Hop Off Bus in Manaco . Monacois so small (0.75 square miles) and besides, the local bus service is so CHEAP and efficient, you can get around at only 2Euros per trip. The HOHO bus, if we are correct ,costs over 20 Euros, about ten times more expensive.

 

Of course, if you wish to pay the extra money to HOHO, that is entirely your prerogative.

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It is really a waste of money using the Hop On Hop Off Bus in Manaco . Monacois so small (0.75 square miles) and besides, the local bus service is so CHEAP and efficient, you can get around at only 2Euros per trip. The HOHO bus, if we are correct ,costs over 20 Euros, about ten times more expensive.

 

Of course, if you wish to pay the extra money to HOHO, that is entirely your prerogative.

 

I was talking about rainy day activities and the walk through the port to the local bus stops on the main road is likely to be a wet one. The HOHO bus stops practically next to the berthing spots. You can do the circuit as many times as you want.

 

Plus which, having been to Monaco at least twenty times I know the limitations of the local buses. They are designed to get the Monegasque's to work not tourists to the tourist spots and they are packed with people so it's common to be unable to get on it at the popular stops. The one exception is the local 100 bus to Nice...now that is worth taking for the spectacular views alone.

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The HoHo buses were in abundance on January 1st. The stop is just by the berth we docked at. Yes the buses are cheaper but its a fair walk to the bus stops. Remember however that there is a little ferry service for 2 Euros which takes you from one side of the main port to the other. i went up to the old town via the car park and lifts, then walked down to the ferry and then used the lifts to take me near to the Casino Square, but the sun was shining brightly! We had anticipated being tendered into Port de Fontveille as we had done with Viking previously.

There are maps and tourist information in the port building you must walk through if docked.

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I was talking about rainy day activities and the walk through the port to the local bus stops on the main road is likely to be a wet one. The HOHO bus stops practically next to the berthing spots. You can do the circuit as many times as you want.

 

Plus which, having been to Monaco at least twenty times I know the limitations of the local buses. They are designed to get the Monegasque's to work not tourists to the tourist spots and they are packed with people so it's common to be unable to get on it at the popular stops. The one exception is the local 100 bus to Nice...now that is worth taking for the spectacular views alone.

 

AGREED!!! We rode the 100 bus into Nice on New Year's Day. It is a cloudless day We had no real plan when we set out for the day because the Chagall Museum of closed and that was what we really wanted to see in Nice. So, we got off the bus and just started walking along the waterfront in the direction of the Old Town. There were a lot of people with the same idea.

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