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Transatlantic Cruise--Anything to Do :)?


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Hey all, We are actually tentatively thinking about doing something really crazy in 2022--cruising back from Rome to one of the Florida ports so we can 1) avoid that awful air flight back, and 2) get a cruise in along with a land tour of Italy and 3) see some of the farther western places  (perhaps Morocco? Gibraltar? Canary Islands?) that wouldn't normally be on a Rome-Rome roundtrip. But here is what I am wondering: there are generally five or six days of sea cruising while crossing the Atlantic and I am not real good for just sitting around and staring at the sea and sky. We are too old to do much pool activities or bar activities so...what have you who have done a Transatlantic found to do for the long sea days when there are no stops and excursions? Will I end up going crazy from doing too much reading and playing board games? Thanks for any counsel or suggestions!

Edited by Minnesota Rookie
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15 minutes ago, Minnesota Rookie said:

Hey all, We are actually tentatively thinking about doing something really crazy in 2022--cruising back from Rome to one of the Florida ports so we can 1) avoid that awful air flight back, and 2) get a cruise in along with a land tour of Italy and 3) see some of the farther western places  (perhaps Morocco? Gibraltar? Canary Islands?) that wouldn't normally be on a Rome-Rome roundtrip. But here is what I am wondering: there are generally five or six days of sea cruising while crossing the Atlantic and I am not real good for just sitting around and staring at the sea and sky. We are too old to do much pool activities or bar activities so...what have you who have done a Transatlantic found to do for the long sea days when there are no stops and excursions? Will I end up going crazy from doing too much reading and playing board games? Thanks for any counsel or suggestions!

 

Howdy @Minnesota Rookie emo22.gif

 

Welcome back to the Cruise Critic message boards! emo34.gif  I see it has been a while since you posted on the boards.

 

Thank you for your new thread titled Transatlantic Cruise--Anything to Do :)? on the Ask a Cruise Question forum. 👍  However, it is the forum for general questions regarding cruising. Your thread was off-topic there since your post concerns Transatlantic cruising.

 

To help you out, I have moved your thread to the Transatlantic, Transpacific, Repositioning & Trans-Ocean Cruises forum where it will be on topic. Browse through the thread titles l👀king for titles of interest. You will probably find your fellow Cruise Critic members have already posted questions and received answers that will be of interest to you.

 

And don't forget, if you do decide to take a Transatlantic cruise, be sure to submit your review for publication by Cruise Critic. Many cruisers will benefit from your experience! See How To: Submit a Member Review.

 

I hope this will be helpful and glad to have you back aboard the Cruise Critic message board! emo35.gif

 

Happy sails,

 

Host Kat  emo32.gif

 

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5 minutes ago, Minnesota Rookie said:

Thanks Kat. Sorry for the misplacing of the thread!

 

You are most welcome!  emo34.gif  And don't worry. I look at it as "job security" for this non-paid volunteer position!

 

Glad to be of service,

 

Host Kat emo32.gif

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3 hours ago, Minnesota Rookie said:

Hey all, We are actually tentatively thinking about doing something really crazy in 2022--cruising back from Rome to one of the Florida ports so we can 1) avoid that awful air flight back, and 2) get a cruise in along with a land tour of Italy and 3) see some of the farther western places  (perhaps Morocco? Gibraltar? Canary Islands?) that wouldn't normally be on a Rome-Rome roundtrip. But here is what I am wondering: there are generally five or six days of sea cruising while crossing the Atlantic and I am not real good for just sitting around and staring at the sea and sky. We are too old to do much pool activities or bar activities so...what have you who have done a Transatlantic found to do for the long sea days when there are no stops and excursions? Will I end up going crazy from doing too much reading and playing board games? Thanks for any counsel or suggestions!

The standard description for transatlantic sea days is “Nothing to do, and not enough time to do it”

So far,  Mrs Bear and I have made four crossings on QM2 - a pair of round trip sailings, with much longer “Norway and Northern Lights” round trip planned for 2022.

QM2 spends most of the year on crossings, sometimes with cruise segments at either side of the Atlantic.

 

Cunard offers full day programs, including special theme events. Our 2019 sailing featured the Anthony Inglas & English National Symphony with two evening performances (one with a passenger chorus) on the eastbound crossing, followed by presentations and performances by the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts on the westbound.

 

 

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4 hours ago, Minnesota Rookie said:

Hey all, We are actually tentatively thinking about doing something really crazy in 2022--cruising back from Rome to one of the Florida ports so we can 1) avoid that awful air flight back, and 2) get a cruise in along with a land tour of Italy and 3) see some of the farther western places  (perhaps Morocco? Gibraltar? Canary Islands?) that wouldn't normally be on a Rome-Rome roundtrip. But here is what I am wondering: there are generally five or six days of sea cruising while crossing the Atlantic and I am not real good for just sitting around and staring at the sea and sky. We are too old to do much pool activities or bar activities so...what have you who have done a Transatlantic found to do for the long sea days when there are no stops and excursions? Will I end up going crazy from doing too much reading and playing board games? Thanks for any counsel or suggestions!

As you can see by an entire CC forum dedicated to transoceanic cruises, you’d hardly be “doing something really crazy.” 
 

We tend to do a lot of multi-segment cruises on a single preferred line. And many of our booked trips (past and future) include transoceanic components.

 

Our next one of that ilk will occur in May 2022- with 45 days CPT-LIS and LIS-NYC. Later in 2022, we’ll do another 45+ days trip including a segment crossing from Rome to Miami. The only downside there is ending up in Miami, which holds zero allure for us. Can you imagine how quickly that cruise would sell out if, instead, it was headed to NYC?


FWIW, our preference is for TransPacific cruises (e.g.,SYD-LAX or preferably SFO [home]) for all sorts of reasons.

in any case, the answer to your “boredom” question(s) really depend on which cruise line. 

Perhaps most importantly, on a longer cruise with an ocean crossing, the quality of food/cabin/service is a set of major considerations. As for activities, our preferred line has a bona fide/hands on cooking school in a dedicated teaching lab where world renowned chefs can be found (see pic).

Add to that excellent lecturers, many of whom are retired professors in specialties associated with the itinerary, wine and spirits tastings, art and photography lessons, etc and even a “country fair” full of competitions/prizes as well as an “on-demand” film collection and excellent library collection and you’ll quickly realize there’s no need for wet t shirt contests, phony art auctions, etc.

191619BA-AF20-4CAD-9383-86A614D418AF.jpeg

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Until now, if you have only taken port intensive cruises, a Trans-Atlantic, Trans-Pacific or even a World Cruise can be a daunting prospect.

 

Our preferred direction on longer cruises is Westbound, as the extra hour many nights really helps to fit everything we want to do in a day. Honestly, we are so busy we rarely have time to sit and watch the ocean go by. Personally, I did that for a living for 40 yrs and it's highly over-rated.

 

We also don't sail on mega ships, or mainstream ships, as we also have no interest in wacky pool games, marriage games, etc. We attend some incredible lectures, most of which are presented on topics relevant to where we are cruising. At Noon our preferred cruise line has Trivia right after the Captain's noon announcement. Breakfast, lunch and dinner - we almost always enjoy in the MDR, at sharing tables. We often meet some extremely interesting fellow pax to chat with and have spent up to 3 hrs over dinner.

 

Entertainment - we often had the Cruise Director's staff performing afternoon concerts in the Atrium and in the evening, they had shows or guest entertainers. A number of evenings, they may also host special nights of entertainment up on the pool deck.

 

Activities - even smaller ships have a host of activities, fitness programs, arts/crafts, music/choir, card games, dancing lessons, etc.

 

Even with 25 hr days it is tough to fit it all in. I find I have less time to read books on a longer cruise than at home.

 

Been across the Atlantic & Pacific many times and last year, spent about the last 50 days of a world cruise ship without getting ashore. Bored - never, we were actually very sad to eventually disembark. 

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23 hours ago, Minnesota Rookie said:

Thanks for any counsel or suggestions!

 

All of Heidi13's comments, I can support!  

 

I'll add that a longer cruise allows one to become more than superficially familiar with fellow guests and crew members.  That can add another dimension to a cruise that is sometimes difficult to develop on a short and/or port intensive cruise.  

 

With one trans-Atlantic crossing (really wasn't a cruise) on QE2 when there were labor problems on the ship being the exception, I am never ready to disembark after a long cruise.  There is so much to experience; to do; I can't do it all.  

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On 7/27/2021 at 5:13 PM, rkacruiser said:

 

All of Heidi13's comments, I can support!  

 

I'll add that a longer cruise allows one to become more than superficially familiar with fellow guests and crew members.  That can add another dimension to a cruise that is sometimes difficult to develop on a short and/or port intensive cruise.  

 

With one trans-Atlantic crossing (really wasn't a cruise) on QE2 when there were labor problems on the ship being the exception, I am never ready to disembark after a long cruise.  There is so much to experience; to do; I can't do it all.  

I agree.  My days on a transatlantic are so busy I rarely have time for a nap!

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I love sea days because there is so much to do and I still get to relax.  On the ship I always get in a group for Every Day Trivia.  On Trans-Atlantic and Trans-Pacific cruises they do trivia every sea day and keep track of points for groups.  Then there is also Music Trivia, Silent Disco, White Party Nights besides other orginized ship activities.  

Because we have the extra sea days the Cruise Critic Boards for the cruise will be much more active.  I have a Trans-Atlantic Cruise and Trans-Pacific Cruise booked for the next year and both boards are very active; 18 pages and 66 pages.  Then you have the activities that the Cruise Critic Board organizes themselves to do on sea days.  Here is what is orginized so far and we still have 8 months before our cruise.

  • Sail Away Gathering
  • CABIN CRAWL
  • SLOT PULL
  • Poker Pub Crawl
  • Left Right Center Game
  • CHEF'S TABLE
  • Bering Book Club
  • Dinner at le Petit Chef
  • Trash Card Game
  • Knitting Group

Note:  Your Cruise Critic Board will also most likely organize their own shore excursions on port days.

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