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About oksteveou

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    Tulsa, OK
  • Interests
    Classical music, Liverpool football, Oklahoma Sooners
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  1. I am a bit of a foodie. Besides the licorice (which I love and will definitely load up on--and no one else in my family likes it--so it is all mine!!), any other US customs-friendly food items (e.g., jams, cured meats, candies, etc.) in the Baltic countries that are particularly good and are harder to find or more expensive in the US? Thanks.
  2. Thanks for the top regarding licorice in Copenhagen! I love licorice and wasn't aware of the Danes' affinity for it. I'll definitely be on the look-out for some.
  3. FYI, my family of 4 has booked Best Guides' Best of the Best mini-group tour for June 2019, and we cannot wait! Thanks for all of the wonderful reviews and information! Question: not knowing everything that is included in their "city tour" each morning, is that portion of the tour likely to include a stop at the Peter & Paul Fortress? If not, would it be feasible/worthwhile to ask if they could include it? I don't know if the logistics/distance would preclude it. I don't need a tour of the entire fortress, I really just would like to see the tombs of the Tsars. Thoughts? An easy stop? Way out of the way? Not worth the effort? Thanks again.
  4. I would also be curious about this. When will you be there? We will be there mid-June 2019 on NCL Getaway.
  5. We chose the Best of the Best Tour for our June 2019 Baltic Cruise on NCL, after originally booking the Happy Tour and strongly considering a private tour. The cost for a private tour was just too much for us, and the minigroup tours, while limited to 15 people, usually have about 8-12 people per Best Guides. The Best of the Best Tour included everything we wanted to do anyway, so we are fine sharing it with a few other people. Best of luck in your decision! I don't think you can make a bad one.
  6. Main differences I see: Happy Tour has much shorter city driving tour (30 minutes vs 90 minutes both days for Best of Best, which is mostly why the Happy Tour ends an hour earlier on Day 1 and starts an hour later on Day 2). Happy Tour drives to Peterhof (60 minutes) while Best of Best takes Hydrofoil (30 minutes). Happy Tour includes a "Citizens Walking Tour" vs. a Boat tour on the canals on the Best of Best. The last 2 differences are the main reasons why we switched from the Happy Tour to the Best of the Best. We like boats! If you click on these links, you can compare the itineraries yourself: Best of the Best: https://www.bestguides-spb.com/best-2day.html Happy Tour: https://www.bestguides-spb.com/happytour-2day.html Steve
  7. By the way, if anyone cares, I think we are going to switch to the "Best of the Best" minigroup tour.
  8. My family has booked a minigroup "Happy Tour" with St. Petersburg Best Guides on June 11-12 on our NCL Getaway Baltic Cruise. They offer some evening options that I would love some advice/feedback on for anyone who has experienced them. The options are the ballet, a folk show and a classical music concert. I've seen a lot of other threads about the folk show, so I think I know what that is like. Are these ballet and classical music performances full performances offered to the general public, or are they abbreviated and canned performances aimed squarely at cruise ship passengers or tourists generally? If the latter, how long do they last and are they any good? Also, Best Guides offers a complementary White Nights evening tour. Can anyone speak to that tour and whether you enjoyed it or not? Thanks!
  9. Thanks for all of the great information! My family of 4 traveling on NCL Getaway has booked a "Happy Tour" with Best Guides June 11-12, and we cannot wait!
  10. We're booked on that same cruise on the Getaway. Ports of call are Copenhagen, Wernemunde, Tallin, St. Petersburg, Helsinki, Stockholm, Copenhagen. We booked it for the same reason. For a family of 4, it's hard to beat NCL's 3rd and 4th passenger (nearly) free promotion. We book a minisuite so we have a little larger bathroom.
  11. As previously noted, the hours are 8-10 daily (but closes at 8pm the last night of the cruise). They put a sticker on your key card when you check in that allows you to enter the thermal suite. One other nice perk to the thermal suite pass for me was the ability to use the nice and spacious showers in the men's locker rooms to clean up for dinner vs. traipsing back to my cabin in a wet bathing suit. Enjoy!
  12. BonnieH is spot on. The thermal suite on the Escape is heavenly and highly recommended. I think there is a glitch with their web site because I couldn't book it on-line either. But I called and they booked it for me over the phone at $199. My wife booked on board for $219. Although there were a few heated lounger hogs the first at sea day, there was generally plenty of room for all and it was a quiet oasis on an otherwise crowded and often loud ship. This was by far the best thermal suite I have ever experienced.
  13. We booked the "Cruise Ship Special", a 5 hour private tour through Sailing With Friends. One nice thing about private tours (which cost more, of course) is they leave when you get there and come back whenever you want to come back. And they go where you want to go.
  14. The water also tends to be calmer and clearer in the morning than in the afternoon.
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