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Everything posted by Blocks

  1. Back in 2017 we used Smiths for Airports. Cost was 74 GBP at that time. We docked at 8:00am and were picked up at 9:30am and we were far too early for a 4:00pm flight. I would allow at least 2 hours for the journey as you never know what traffic will be like especially if it is a week day.
  2. I don't know the answer to your question as I am not sure where Azamara normally docks in Venice. However MSC Opera actually crashed before reaching the main cruise terminal. The ship has now been moved to the main part of cruise terminal. If you look at a ship tracking website such as MarineTraffic you can see where it crashed into the dock and river boat that was docked there.
  3. Has to be Venice but Geiranger is also great.
  4. I had this hotel booked through Expedia for my recent cruise and after reading about several instances of this happening, a few weeks before travelling, I cancelled and booked a hotel in Rome and took the train to Civitavecchia in the morning.
  5. We used Trapani Tours, the owner is called Aldo Trapani. Erice is quite close to Trapani, if you only want to visit Erice then you could possibly just get a taxi from the port, I know one couple from our cruise who did this.
  6. Hi Mary, Thank you. Erice seemed really nice but when we went it was in the clouds in a thunderstorm which was very atmospheric but ruined the views of the surrounding countryside that we were told were fabulous. At Segesta, there are 2 parts, the temple was within walking distance from the ticket office although all uphill and was quite impressive but only warranted a 15-30 minute visit. The amphitheatre has a bus service to reach it because it is 1.2km away and over a hill but it only ran every 30 mins when we were there and we didn't have time to visit before we had to head back to Trapani. If it was my choice I would choose Erice but keep your fingers crossed that it is not in the clouds.
  7. You board the bus by deck number from 8 down to 4 so the time you leave and the time you get back will depend on your deck. There were 15 buses last week and when they returned to the port there was not much room for turning so it took a bit of time to offload people at the ship.
  8. I have not received one and finished my cruise on Monday.
  9. Hi Mike, I just completed my first Azamara cruise on Journey on an Italy Intensive itinerary. I am 50 and although there were some people who looked younger than me on the cruise there was not many, I was definitely at the lower end of the age range. I found that after 11pm there was not much happening apart from a few people in Spirits/Casino area but it was a very port intensive cruise so maybe that was a contributing factor. On a couple of nights we went to the Living Room after the show in Cabaret and it was almost empty. It will depend on the length of cruise and the number of ports.
  10. I wasn't aware of the Sunset Bar, I saw the bar outside and assumed that this was just part of the Windows Cafe and only open at the same time. We did try to sit outside when at the Windows Cafe but typically the tables closest to the rail were occupied and it was a bit awkward to stand there between the tables.
  11. I have a Nikon D5500 and a couple of different lenses that I switch between.
  12. I attended the 1 hour session with Eric in Cabaret and agree with what you have documented in this thread although this was my first Azamara cruise so I have no experience of what the entertainment was like previously.
  13. Thank you. We took a private tour in Trapani, we didn't actually go into the city on foot, we drove through it to get to Erice, but we were in the clouds in a thunderstorm for most of the time in Erice but it was very atmospheric although we missed out on spectacular views. We also visited San Vito, Scopello, Castellanmare del Golfo and Segesta during the tour.
  14. Some photos from our cruise can be viewed here - https://flic.kr/s/aHskKFeuuo
  15. Just returned home yesterday from a 9 day Italy Intensive cruise on Azamara Journey which sailed from Civitavecchia on 6th October 2018. We travelled as a party of 4 and had 2 Oceanview rooms on deck 4. We bought the Chefs Table plus 2 dining package. Below are some comments on our first Azamara cruise. Positives Friendliness and service from the crew especially Dave at Discoveries for breakfast and Julius in Spirits Bar and other locations. Visibility of the captain and other senior crew members. I am sure the captain was wishing passengers a good day as we left the ship at every port we docked at. Food was generally very good, especially the speciality restaurants and the chef’s table, but we had no complaints about the food in Discoveries. Booked our the dining package and speciality dining as soon as we boarded with no issues. Entertainment provided by Eric de Gray who was excellent and the other entertainment staff was very good. We attended most late shows and enjoyed them all. The exchanges between Eric and captain Johannes were amusing as were Eric’s grandad stories. AzAmazing Evening with Incanto Quartet in Livorno was excellent and very well organised. Size of the ship was great, nothing felt too far away compared to the other larger ships we have sailed on. Enjoyed the included coffee and snacks available at Mosaic Cafe. Generally bar service was very good and we had no issues with getting cocktails or drinks using the included spirits. We tendered at 3 ports and very rarely had to wait a long time for a tender boat in either direction. Closeness to the city at several ports of call, especially Porto Ferraio and Trapani. Oceanview room was adequate and Paulo our room steward was very friendly and efficient. Embarkation and debarkation were efficient both at start and end of cruise and at ports of call. Friendliness and courtesy of fellow passengers with very few exceptions. Living Room was very nice room and the food which was served (especially the tapas) was a nice touch. Negatives Missed not having a balcony (our choice) but it was only one floor up to deck 5. Not being able to walk a full circuit of the ship on deck 5 and it was often closed off in the middle at both sides. Apart from the Windows cafe, unable to get a sea view from the back of the ship which I had enjoyed on other cruises. Other Comments We are in our early 50s and whilst not the youngest on the cruise we were definitely at the lower end of the age range. White Night was very busy and queues to get food were quite long and slightly chaotic at times but the local Sorrento Mozzarella and tomatoes was a nice touch. Some of the included white wines were not to our taste, we stuck with included red wines which were generally good. We only had 1 sea day, so it was a very port intensive cruise, not sure how I would have felt if we had more sea days. Regretted missing the Indian night at the buffet because we booked Aqualina on that night because the smell was amazing. For speciality dining only times which seemed to be available for us to book were 18:00, 18:30, 20:00 and 20:30. We only booked private excursions so had no experience of Azamara excursions. I would have no hesitation to sail again on Azamara for the right price and itinerary.
  16. Blocks

    Journey in Norway

    Nice pics, you have much better weather than when we were there in June 2017.
  17. Try Aldo's Limos, I have 2 tours booked with them in Sorrento and Amalfi when I am there in October on Azamara Journey. We used them 3 years ago from Naples and they were great. They will create a group tour for you.
  18. It wasn't a tender port when we were there on Jade in June 2017. Some people got off and wandered around and then came back onboard, but there wasn't much in the immediate vicinity of the dock.
  19. Blocks

    New Drinks Menu

    I am one week away from final payment. I am in the UK and if I had not already paid so much as a deposit for my first Azamara Cruise I would be walking away. In my opinion I am not getting what I booked, I will contact my credit card company to see if I would be entitled to a refund of the deposit.
  20. Blocks

    New Drinks Menu

    I have my first cruise with Azamara booked for October 2018 and final payment is due at the start of June, I am now having some second thoughts on whether this is the line for me.
  21. We did a shared tour from Naples of Sorrento, Positano and Amalfi, it was in a Mercedes 8-seater van, we have 5 people on the tour.
  22. I have also used Aldo's Limos and will be using them again in October.
  23. Yes they have them in the spa, not very many 5-6.
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