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Greek Island cruise May 2022 Royal Carrabbean


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We are going on a Greek islands cruise out of Rome on the new Odyssey ship. We have been on cruises before but not the Mediterranean. I have a few questions for people that have been on a similar cruise. Any input would be appreciated.

-I am finding the posted shore excursions expensive. Are there alternatives at each port or should we just book thru the cruise line?
-I have heard that European cruises are more upscale then Caribbean cruises. I don’t really want to pack a suit jacket. Is a shirt and tie OK for formal nights?

-We are flying to Rome early. Any hotel recommendations. Somewhere in the historic district maybe, but are open.

-What s the weather like in May? Jacket needed?

Thanks in advance



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I feel dress is same on Mediterranean cruises as others on Royal Caribbean. 
No suit is necessary for men in main dining.  I have found that to true on dressier nights also.   Nice shirt is sufficient.  

As for tours,  the royal excursions do seem high.  Look for info under the ports of call or on TripAdvisor to decide if you want to do it your own or if a tour is better. 
we did this cruise in November some years ago and maybe a light jacket is that was needed. 
check the Rome boards for hotel info. 


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Posted (edited)

Hi, & welcome to Cruise Critic,


RCI aren't fussy about dress for dinner - jacket & tie is fine for formal night, no need for even that on regular nights. But long pants & shoes in the dining rooms.


In pretty-well any port you can do your own thing, no need for over-priced ship's excursions.

But you do need to research, and fix up any tours in advance - you'll not find stacks of vans & taxis at the port like in the Caribbean.

Taxis are much more expensive in Europe than the Caribbean, it's pot-luck whether a driver has a decent grasp of English, and they're more used to A to B journeys so not great on historic sights etc. So hail a taxi only to get you from port to station, or from one part of a city to another part.

For more specific information - recommended tours, train & bus & boat options, or whether you can do your thing without any need for transportation, you need to list your ports.

And browse & ask on the Ports of Call boards https://boards.cruisecritic.com/forum/8-europe/


Cheapest hotels in central Rome are around Termini station (direct trains from there to Civitavecchia), or better hotels / locations anywhere between there and the Vatican.


I'm a great fan of ho-ho buses in most cities, but don't waste your time & money on Rome's ho-ho buses, their routes are restricted (even more so are the ho-ho buses in Florence), and they spend an inordinate amount of time at Termini station waiting to load. 

If you want an over-view take a regular bus tour (Rome by night is quite good)


JB 🙂

Edited by John Bull
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Hi, I would check to see if there is a roll call for your cruise.  Many times folks want to share in private tours.  And it is a nice way to meet others who are on the same cruise too.🙂

Hope you have a fantastic time😃

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May is still Spring so it can be a mixed bag ..... rainy and cool enough for a jacket in the evening, or hot and humid.  I always pack a light jacket just in case.  (Had to buy a rain poncho in Venice on one trip


Have no idea which ports you're visiting, but we did DIY on our Greek Isles cruise.   I highly recommend Rick Steves book ' Mediterranean Cruiseports' .  Lots of good options to choose from depending on your interests.  Also, look at past trip reports ..... determine which ships were at those ports in 2019 then do a search for that ship and you'll find some detailed reports. Any cruiseline. Also, youtube is a good resource.

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When we cruised out of Rome we stayed at the Albergo del Senato and would sty there again upon a return to Rome. In fact, we had a booked for a May 2021 cruise, which (obviously) did not happen.   

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The OP does not see which cruise so we are not sure of the itinerary.  But having been to all the various ports (multiple times) we can give some guidance on DIY (we tend to do nearly all ports on our own).  The one port that we strongly recommend a tour is Kusadasi.  That is because most first time visitors will want to make Ephesus a destination and that place is best done with a knowledgeable guide during a first visit.  There are many excellent private tour companies in Kusadasi but we hesitate to recommend one specific company because none of us knows how the long COVID shut down has impacted on the tour companies.  That being said we still prefer a small group tour with a decent local company then a large cruise line excursion.   I will say that on one visit (we have been to this port 5 times) we booked a private tour (for 2) through Ekol Travel.  At the time we requested a very skilled guide since it was going to be our third visit to Ephesus and we wanted a more in depth explanation.  We got an amazing guide (with a degree in archeology) who turned out to be friends with Ephesus's Curator (that guide is long gone and we think he went to Russia).  We paid about the same for that two person tour as a large excursion through the cruise and it was fantastic since we set the pace and actually varied our itinerary.    The OP might want to do this kind of private 2 person tour, but they could also use the CC Roll Call and join with some others on a small group tour. 


As to the other ports they can all be done independently, but as John Bull has said, independent travel means doing your pre-trip homework!  As one who has traveled independently for over fifty years I always advise folks to learn all the options before making an itinerary decision.  In many ports we prefer not to decide on what we will do until the vary day we are in the port (not a problem unless you are doing something that requires advance reservations).  This kind of flexibility lets you tailor things to the weather and your mood.   In many ports there will be dozens of options.  



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On 8/19/2021 at 1:28 PM, clairol said:

When we cruised out of Rome we stayed at the Albergo del Senato and would sty there again upon a return to Rome. In fact, we had a booked for a May 2021 cruise, which (obviously) did not happen.   


We'll be on Odyssey in September 2022 and this is where we plan to book pre and post cruise.

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