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SLSD

Which of these two itineraries (both including Adriatic) would you choose?

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Posted (edited)

We've only been back home for less than two weeks, but we are already talking about our next Seabourn cruise.  As I said in another post, my husband really wants to do include the Adriatic in our next sailing.  I've been looking at itineraries, mindful to stay out of the  high tourist summer months.  I've come up with two possibilities.  Since most of you have sailed on many more cruises than we have, I thought I'd present the two possibilities for your comments.  My questions would be---Which itinerary has the more interesting ports and which would be at a better time of year for the itinerary? Any other comments you have would be most welcome.   One itinerary is aboard the Ovation and the other aboard the Odyssey.  

 

Cruise #1:  10 day Italian and Adriatic Autumn/Ovation

                   October 18 2020-October 28, 2020

 

Barcelona

Day at Sea

Corsica (Bonifacio)

Rome (Civitavecchia)

Day at Sea

Naples (Pompeii)

Kotor, Montenegro

Vodice, Croatia

Rijeka, Croatia 

Piran, Slovenia

Venice 

 

 

Cruise #2:  14 day Aegean Treasures and Adriatic/Odyssey

                  May 16, 2020-May 30-2020

 

Athens, Greece

Ermooupolis, Nisoa, Syros, Greece  (an island)

Rhodes, Greece

Fethiye, Turkey

Bodrum, Turkey

Thira (Santorini) Greece

Spetsai, Nisos, Spetsai (Spetses), Greece

Athens, Greece

Monemvasia, Greece (an island) 

Katakolun (Olympia) Greece

Nydri, Nisos Lekkada, Greece

Brindisi (Lecce) Italy

Dubrovnik Croatia

Zadar, Croatia

Venice, Italy 

Edited by SLSD

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Cruise #2

1 May is a better time of year.Everything will be fresh and green, weather should be good.

Not too busy ashore.

2 October is too risky on the weather front.Of course you could be lucky but the region is prone to wind and rain at this time of the year.

3 The ports are more interesting.Dubrovnik,Rhodes, Santorini are world class and will not be too busy in May.

4 On itinerary #1 Kotor is stunning but Cittavecchia is a fair distance from Rome.In my view the city of Naples is best avoided!

Happy sailing.

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I haven't taken either of these cruises but know a lot of the ports from land-based trips. Both itineraries are super IMO, and I'd like to take both at some point.

 

But if I had to choose one of them it would be the 2nd.

May in the Med the weather is usually lovely, although there may be a couple of rain showers in the mid month. The Med is at it's most beautiful then. October can go either way but it can be stormy.

2nd cruise visits some wonderful ports in Greece. Here I am biased as Greece is one of my favourite countries in the world. It visits 3 not so well known islands, Syros, Spetses and Lefkada as well as bigger, better know islands such as Rhodes and Santorini. 

One more reason - cruise 2 is longer! 

 

Also, for me, I will always choose one of the O class ships over the new ones for a good weather itinerary. Plenty of deck space and not so crowded pool deck. Unlike Ovation. 

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I would take the second for the weather as mentioned . One of our favourite cruises was Venice to Athens years ago on the Spirit, the ports and trips were the best we have had.

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Here's another vote for the May cruise.  We have cruised in the Med in both May and October and had good weather in both.  I would choose the second cruise because 1) it's longer 😊 which is always a plus IMHO and 2) I would prefer the mix of ports.  We've been on the Odyssey a couple of times and thoroughly enjoyed it.  We've not been on the Ovation (we'll  be on her next year) but we did enjoy the Encore last month.

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I would try and find a cruise that includes Dubrovnik, Kotor and Venice.  

 

Floris 

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florisdekort, Good point, but one of the itineraries includes Kotor and the other Dubrovnik---both include Venice. 

 

There is a possibility we may do a land based trip in France next year.  We're discussing  it with friends.  My husband is saying he doesn't want to miss another May out at our farm.  (Of course May would be a good time for a land based trip as well.)  Personally, I would hate to miss October at our farm.  June/July/August are not our favorite months anywhere.  I guess we could do a Norwegian itinerary.  

 

So many options.  

 

I thank all of you for your comments here--and I agree.  I've read such bad things about the hordes of tourists at Santorini, I am a bit put off (the donkeys, the hill, the cable car, the crowds).  

 

 

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If you're interested in an Adriatic intensive cruise, you may wish to consider Odyssey 14-day Gems of the Venetian Empire in Sept 2020.  We did a similar cruise in Sept 2017 with many of the same ports.  It was fabulous.  We had excellent weather (except Venice where it poured) and uncrowded ports (except Venice where it was busy).  The itinerary is superb with a mix of must sees like Dubrovnik, Kotor and Venice as well as lesser known gems such as Monemvasia and Brindisi.  Only downside is it's very port-intensive, but even with that, we were able to adapt our pace accordingly to enjoy some relaxation time.  Truly worth a look IMO.

https://www.seabourn.com/en_US/find-a-cruise/E0M14J/4064A.html

 

Athens (Piraeus)
Monemvasia, Greece
Olympia (Katakolon), Greece
Nydri (Lefkada), Greece
Brindisi, Italy
Dubrovnik, Croatia
Zadar, Croatia
Venice, Italy
Sibenik, Croatia
Kotor, Montenegro
Corfu, Greece
Cephalonia, Greece
Pylos, Greece
Mylos, Greece
Athens (Piraeus)

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Thank you MightyQuinn.  Somehow I missed this one.  It would satisfy my husband's wish to stay in Texas next May and our wish to see the Adriatic ports.  This might be the answer (unless we decide to do a land trip to France---we are not going to do two European trips in one year. )  

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33 minutes ago, MightyQuinn said:

If you're interested in an Adriatic intensive cruise, you may wish to consider Odyssey 14-day Gems of the Venetian Empire in Sept 2020.  We did a similar cruise in Sept 2017 with many of the same ports.  It was fabulous.  We had excellent weather (except Venice where it poured) and uncrowded ports (except Venice where it was busy).  The itinerary is superb with a mix of must sees like Dubrovnik, Kotor and Venice as well as lesser known gems such as Monemvasia and Brindisi.  Only downside is it's very port-intensive, but even with that, we were able to adapt our pace accordingly to enjoy some relaxation time.  Truly worth a look IMO.

https://www.seabourn.com/en_US/find-a-cruise/E0M14J/4064A.html

 

Athens (Piraeus)
Monemvasia, Greece
Olympia (Katakolon), Greece
Nydri (Lefkada), Greece
Brindisi, Italy
Dubrovnik, Croatia
Zadar, Croatia
Venice, Italy
Sibenik, Croatia
Kotor, Montenegro
Corfu, Greece
Cephalonia, Greece
Pylos, Greece
Mylos, Greece
Athens (Piraeus)

MightyQuinn, I'm able to click on your link and find this itinerary.  But, when I go to the SB website on my own, it is not there.  Any ideas why this might be?  No wonder I didn't see it.  

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24 minutes ago, SLSD said:

MightyQuinn, I'm able to click on your link and find this itinerary.  But, when I go to the SB website on my own, it is not there.  Any ideas why this might be?  No wonder I didn't see it.  

 

SLSD, I'm not surprised!  I find it quite difficult to navigate the SB website, especially when searching for itineraries. 

In this instance, I scrolled to the bottom of the home page and clicked Find My Cruise under Travel Resources.  Since I was looking for our previous itinerary, I then selected Piraeus as the departure port and Sept 2020 for the departure date.  Results were populated with 4 cruises and voila! the cruise I posted was there.  

You can also find it under Destinations from the home page by selecting Mediterranean.  A whopping 82 cruises are returned.  You can then apply filters or scroll through to 2020.  This cruise first appears in May 2020 and if you click More Dates & Fares, you'll see it is offered several times, including Sept 2020.

Not easy for sure.  That's why I strongly prefer a printed brochure! 
 

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Posted (edited)

MightyQuinn, I agree with you.  Seabourn is not doing themselves any favors by making their itineraries hard to find.  

Edited by SLSD

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Posted (edited)

SLSD - You need to check the Cruise Timetables website to check how many ships are in these ports.  For instance, on the Odyssey itinerary, there are two other ships at Santorini on 21 May with a potential of 5000 passengers plus the Odyssey's passengers.  

 

https://www.cruisetimetables.com

Edited by Fletcher

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Posted (edited)

Thank you Fletcher.  I will do that.  I'm pretty much expecting Santorini to be a mess. I notice that the September itinerary which MIghtyQuinn suggests does not include Santorini.  That is fine with us.  

 

Now, we need to decide if we are going to do a cruise or a land based trip instead.  

Edited by SLSD

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The September cruise has a list of mostly good ports, but could have very hot and often humid weather, as I did a few years ago in September. I loved the cruise anyway,  just had to change clothes 3x/day, carry huge amounts of liquid, little fans and a sun umbrella, and make beelines for shade and air-conditioning as often as I could to avoid getting too dizzy or worse. October in Greece ( land tour) was cooler but still pleasant ( even when it rained a couple times), less oppressive, less crowded, better for walking, and seemed  more “Greek”.

SLSD,  you live in Texas, so humidity likely does not bother you as much as it does me , so my comment is directed more at others who are debating when to go to this interesting area and might have problems with heat.

I wish you a lovely time on SB whichever one (if any) you choose! 

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Thank you Catlover54,  There is also the issue of the September cruise being two 7 days cruises back to back.  Not a deal breaker, but we usually prefer to be onboard with the same people for the whole cruise.  It is possible that the other 14 days cruise (May) is the same.  

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If you like a relaxing day at sea on your cruise, pick cruise 1, as cruise 2 has no sea days.

 

However I love that cruise 2 itinerary. Olympia is amazing! Take the tour! Athens is so full of history and museums. Santorini has those blue domed churches you see in all those travel photos and Dubrovnik is a must see for Game of Throne fans. Many scenes were filmed there. 

 

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Thanks TV Dad.  We are still talking about this. 

 

I do have another question-- comparing the May cruise and the SEPTEMBER cruise (that MightyQuinn suggested), which would you take?  I'm having some difficulty persuading my husband to  take another May cruise as he loves that time of year at our farm.  But, would the May season be a lot more pleasant that the September weather?

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I understand the push/pull in finding a cruise that is both good weather at the ports of call and fits into the window of time when you want to be away from your home. Having done at least a dozen Med/Adriatic cruises on Seabourn I can say while we have done a couple May/June I prefer going in mid September. I have never found it too hot. The crowds have started thinning but places are still open. By mid October you can often start to get the high winds and increased chance of rain. We are looking at the Sept 19-Oct 3 cruise on Odyssey next year. It has the advantage (from our perspective) of not going to Santorini or Dubrovnik (not the charming places we first visited years ago where you weren’t engulfed in crowds from the moment you set foot on shore) . And more importantly for where it DOES  go - back to two ports in Turkey (possible our favorite country) and Crete. 

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Posted (edited)

Of the two original cruises you mention, Cruise #2 would be my preferred itinerary.  But, let me add something else in favor of September like Chairsin says.  Do you like to swim?  If so, the sea will still be warm in September.  It will definitely be cold in May.  

BTW- we took the first half of the cruise mentioned by Mighty Quinn last year and it was great.  They replaced the one port that was less interesting this year.  I have been to most of the other ports in previous cruises and I think that is a great itinerary.

Edited by marazul

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Going in September would make my husband happy as he is determined to enjoy May in Texas.  I want to thank all of you for your comments---I've read and considered all of them.  Any additional comments would be very welcome.  

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The September sailing in my opinion is the best option as far as the itinerary and timing is concerned .  It ticks off a lot of great ports and it doesn't include Santorini which is overcrowded and a pain in the butt with the tender situation and the cable car or donkey options.  My vote is option 3 !

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September is my vote also. Our first SB cruise was Istanbul to Venice in September on the Odyssey, it was the perfect time to be there. We were in the Med water as much as we could. It was so beautiful, crystal clear and the water was beautifully warm.

 

 

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I want to thank all of you for being so kind and helpful.  And thank you MightyQuinn for bringing my own thread back to my attention.  Upon returning from our May/June cruise, it took me a full 6 weeks to recover from an illness.  Several medical tests--and I'm happy to report that I am going to live.  My husband is just beginning to say (several times a day) "we need to book our next cruise.".  So---I am working on it.  We do need to find a new travel agent as the one we used for our last few cruises really let us down this last time.  

 

But---we are determined to take a warm weather cruise and do the over travelled Adriatic--hopefully in a shoulder season to make it a bit more pleasant.  

 

So here is the cruise we are considering:  https://www.seabourn.com/en_US/find-a-cruise/E0M14J/4064A.html

 

We'll see in the coming weeks if this is the one we book.  I am fairly sure it will be.  We would love to see many of you onboard with us.  

 

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