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Denny01

Silhouette 24 Oct TransAtlantic Live Posting

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Hi All

 

I signed up for the unlimited internet for this TA so I think I’ll try to do a running thread on the Cruise experience. I’ll try not to make it the ‘What I did this Summer’ running-type commentary, and work to make it handy for those interested in the ship (Silhouette), thé itinerary (15N TransAtlantic) and the ports of call (Southampton-NYC/overnight-Boston-Bermuda/overnight-Nassau-FLL).

 

You can see the ports should be a good mix, and I’ll add some info on staying in England prior to the departure on 24 Oct. we are flying into Heathrow, arriving 18 Oct with the following itinerary:

18 Oct - Into Heathrow. rent car. Drive to Windsor (Don’t want a long drive after overnight flight)

18-19 Oct - In Windsor. Harte & Garter Hotel

19 Oct - Drive to Smugglers Restaurant and Inn, Penzance

19-21 Oct - Penzance and explore west Cornwall. 

21 Oct - Drive to Hampshire Pig Inn Waterloo north of Southampton

21 - 24 Oct - Explore the area!! 

24 Oct - turn car into Southampton Airport. And Board Ship!

 

So if you are interested in some info on enjoying southern England prior to a cruise, the ship, an Atlantic crossing and so on, stand by. I’ll start posting probably 18 or 19 Oct, depending on the internet availability.  May add a few comments as we prepare, giving ideas of how to pack for 3 weeks in such varying ports and weather with hotel/driving added. One answer: Add layering clothes for 10-11 days and Use ship Laundry! 

 

Den

 

Edited by Denny01

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Looking forward to reading along as you cruise.  You’re brave to drive in England but your itinerary sounds wonderful.  Enjoy!

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I am missing a trans atlantic this fall, glad to see you are doing a review, I will be following for sure.

Norma

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So pleased you are spending some time in a magical area of England pre cruise. So many people seem to focus on London and then just commute to Southampton. Whilst we love London there is just so much more to the U.K.!

 

Make sure you visit a tin mine in Cornwall, we think Levant is very evocative...

 

Whilst you have the car pre cruise in addition to the obvious ‘must see’ sights like Salisbury, Stonehenge, Winchester...try to visit a few less known places too like Old Sarum and Beaulieu motor museum...None are very far away...Strongly suggest you do a lot of reading and map perusing to make the most of the time you have...(my apologies if you already have a set itinerary).

 

Also suggest you try to add in a couple of quality meals in traditional English Pubs...Well worth researching pre touring as some are open all day, some only serve food at very limited times....

 

You are also towards the end of the U.K. fully open season for National Trust, English Heritage (some have the same hours all year but others restrict opening times/days) so draft a couple of plans and check this pre vacation.

 

Have a fantastic time in this wonderful area of the U.K. (and that is from a Northerner) then sincere best wishes for a fantastic cruise!

 

 

 

 

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We did this same itinerary last fall and enjoyed all the ports although it was pretty cold and the seas across the Atlantic were rocky. It even snowed in New York City the day after we were there. Have a great cruise.

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Thanks for the responses! Yes, decided to focus on Cornwall and around Hampshire areas and not go too far afield since there is so much to see. I understand there very interesting ancient stones in Cornwall that you an walk up to and will give those a go. 

 

Wish we were heading out Now so I could talk on what we are experiencing!

 

Den

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Some fantastic stone sites including circles, fogous and burial chambers...

 

Enjoy!

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2 hours ago, Denny01 said:

Thanks for the responses! Yes, decided to focus on Cornwall and around Hampshire areas and not go too far afield since there is so much to see. I understand there very interesting ancient stones in Cornwall that you an walk up to and will give those a go. 

 

Wish we were heading out Now so I could talk on what we are experiencing!

 

Den

Sounds like a great trip!!

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If you are going to be driving down towards Lands End be sure to detour off to Porthcurno where you can visit the Telegraph Museum and also the Minack Theatre. Even if you cannot take in a play the views of the theatre and Porthcurno beach are spectacular.

 

Will follow your trip as we will be on Silhouette in Feb 2021.

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18 minutes ago, cruzin-again said:

If you are going to be driving down towards Lands End be sure to detour off to Porthcurno where you can visit the Telegraph Museum and also the Minack Theatre. Even if you cannot take in a play the views of the theatre and Porthcurno beach are spectacular.

 

Will follow your trip as we will be on Silhouette in Feb 2021.

I checked on the plays and the only one this week is a children’s play. Looks fun. We will stop and see the area though. 
 

Thanks!

 

den

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Hi

 

if you would like a scenic drive Lands End to St Ives takes some beating.  As you will be driving on the left this is the best way to go as the sea will be on the left.  Truro is a great city to visit the cathedral is stunning.  I may be biased as I live there.  If you have cream tea remember jam then cream. 
 

looking forward to meeting you onboard.

 

Mandy

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Flight

Here we are in the UK. Flew via Delta Atlanta to Heathrow arriving 1130 local. Flight was nothing to speak of. OK. Have arrived earlier before and had 3 other flights from US arrive at 0830ish and a ton of us trying to go through arrival. this flight was the only one in so very quick.

 

Windsor

Rented an Avis car and drove to Windsor. Although planning on most of the time in Cornwall/Hampshire area, decided to spend the first night in Windsor which is only 20-25min from Heathrow. Good idea after an overnight flight instead of driving 5hrs. Watch if you get an cheaper model - many are manual shift which can be tricky even if you know how to use them, being on the other side of what we are use to in the States! I upgraded for $60 for the week for auto and got a hybrid that will save on gas! Tried to navigate via preprinted map and gave up and opened up our iPhone and that worked well, except it gave us directions into one dead end. Recommend set up using international calling/data so you can use google or Apple map navigation. My ATT costs $10 each day I use it. Other phone systems are similar. Handy.

 

Staying at the Clarion Harte and Garter on Hill St right across from Windsor Castle. great hotel. Nice view of the castle; elevators; dining. No parking. Must use city lots. they vary from $20-$5/day depending on distance and if open lot. Room is spacious with a view of the castle - king bed and shower/bathtub.

 

Ate lunch at the old train station which is now a major shopping mall - at the All-Bar-One, which had side rooms that Queen Victoria and Albert stayed in waiting for their train.  Excellent varied menu. Wandered around the castle area - Queen’s flag, the Royal Standard, was flying so she was ‘in residence’. Ate Dinner at the Horse and Groom near the hotel and castle - classic pub food and choices of bitters and wines. Looked like a local place with lots of socializing.

 

Left windows open for cool room and got the ‘party noise’ - it was Friday night. Not bad though.

 

Up and breakfast and wandered a bit more, then on the road to Penzance. Check out is a bit early, 1000, but can ask to stay a little while longer if you wish or leave luggage and wander.

 

Attached is a photo out of our window - it has a rainbow (lightly see the 2nd one) over the Castle! My sister said it was fake and it was a postcard. Ha!

 

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Enjoy your drive to Cornwall the best county in the UK. (I am not to biased as I actually was born and grew up in Surrey).  Looking forward to meeting you Thursday.

 

Mandy

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From what I understand, there are some large groups on your cruise. Will be interested to hear if you notice any issues (groups can sometimes take over certain venues like reserving entire specialty dining, be loud or otherwise change the "vibe").  We're considering a TA in 2021 or later, but they do seem to attract large group bookings.

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35 minutes ago, DebInAntigua said:

From what I understand, there are some large groups on your cruise. Will be interested to hear if you notice any issues (groups can sometimes take over certain venues like reserving entire specialty dining, be loud or otherwise change the "vibe").  We're considering a TA in 2021 or later, but they do seem to attract large group bookings.

 

What groups did you hear were on the ship?  Where do you find this information?

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2 hours ago, ipeeinthepool said:

 

What groups did you hear were on the ship?  Where do you find this information?

I wonder if the poster has been reading the roll call for this sailing.  We have been arranging activities to join in but are not an organised group booking.

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4 hours ago, DebInAntigua said:

From what I understand, there are some large groups on your cruise. Will be interested to hear if you notice any issues (groups can sometimes take over certain venues like reserving entire specialty dining, be loud or otherwise change the "vibe").  We're considering a TA in 2021 or later, but they do seem to attract large group bookings.

to my knowledge, there are no special groups, except my wife and I!! We are active on the cruisecritic roll call and they have set up a cablin crawl, dining party, cards/games, craft get together, Slot pull, chocolate sharing, etc. Very very active and looks like a great time with them to be had. 

 

And I’ve been on 4 TA’s and there haven’t been any large groups that take over common areas and are loud and so on, but again, except me!! Groups tend to go on shorter cruises is my (non-expert) knowledge. 

 

we are at the Smugglers Restaurant and rooms in Penzance (Newlyn really - around the harbor from Penzance). Will post later about it, but It Is a Fantastic place!!

 

Den

 

 

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5 hours ago, DebInAntigua said:

From what I understand, there are some large groups on your cruise. Will be interested to hear if you notice any issues (groups can sometimes take over certain venues like reserving entire specialty dining, be loud or otherwise change the "vibe").  We're considering a TA in 2021 or later, but they do seem to attract large group bookings.

 

1 hour ago, Denny01 said:

to my knowledge, there are no special groups, except my wife and I!! We are active on the cruisecritic roll call and they have set up a cablin crawl, dining party, cards/games, craft get together, Slot pull, chocolate sharing, etc. Very very active and looks like a great time with them to be had. 

 

And I’ve been on 4 TA’s and there haven’t been any large groups that take over common areas and are loud and so on, but again, except me!! Groups tend to go on shorter cruises is my (non-expert) knowledge. 

 

 

 

Deb, I agree with Den here; my wife and I have been on six TAs (four of them on Celebrity, and two of those were on the Silhouette), and there have never been any large groups on board.  Certainly not any groups that were taking over specialty dining or "changing the vibe" or that were large enough to have any impact on other passengers.  I don't think long cruises like these, especially cruises that are not round trip out of one port, and that cross an ocean, attract such big groups.   On a HAL TA we took a year ago, there were a group of knitters, maybe a couple of dozen or so.   You can imagine how noisy they were, LOL!

 

 I just checked the Silhouette TA that Den is about to embark on.  Looks like there will be some folks booked through Pied Piper Travel, which is a gay travel company.  My wife and I have sailed on two Celebrity TAs with them.  Way too small a group to make any impact on the sailing; nice folks enjoying the crossing, just like everyone else on board.

 

Den, have a great time!  We did this crossing on the Silhouette last fall, the TA that was impacted by the huge storm moving across the Atlantic in early November, and still had a wonderful time.

 

I look forward to your reports.

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6 hours ago, DebInAntigua said:

From what I understand, there are some large groups on your cruise. Will be interested to hear if you notice any issues (groups can sometimes take over certain venues like reserving entire specialty dining, be loud or otherwise change the "vibe").  We're considering a TA in 2021 or later, but they do seem to attract large group bookings.

Dunno about that.  24 crossings to date and never had any large groups (other than 20-30 people) aboard any of them.

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Following along, we don't have a cruise until end of Nov, and I need something to keep me plugging along.

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Saturday 19 Oct

Windsor

Up early and walked over to the train station/mall and ate at Bill’s. Great breakfast! Eggs Benedict with avocado. Then drove the car back to the hotel to get the luggage. Got stopped getting on Hill St which the castle and hotel are on - all traffic blocked for 10min or so while they had the changing of the guard. No problem. Checked out and on the road to Penzance.

 

The Drive

takes 4.5+hrs. Good drive but below Exeter, it gets smaller lanes and local farm vehicle traffic which slows it up. Strongly recommend using Google/Apple/GPS Maps/navigation. Again, you really need GPS mapping to find many of these hotels and get around the Round-about traffiic circles - tons of them!

 

Penzance

Smugglers Restaurant and Rooms - Penzance (really in Newlyn which is further along the harbor/bay).

What a place! Small but fantastic rooms. they close for the season next week, so few here now and we have the Harbor Watch room. Unbelievable. Faces the harbor and all the fishing vessels. Queen bed/huge BR/2nd floor no elevator/parking is down the street at harbor - $3.

Very friendly. Ate dinner there. One of the best meals Ive had in a restaurant. You’ve Got to come here! Going to drive the coast up to St Ives tomorrow and stop and see the Marry Maids Stone Circle - prehistoric stones of Stonehenge era but you can walk around and touch.

Good Night

 

 

 

 

 

Den

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