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About tvmovielover

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    North Florida
  • Interests
    Cooking and Travel
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Viking River Cruises
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    Europe and Asia
  1. We did our own extension for three days last summer. We enjoyed the Blue Lagoon despite the crowds but we did the Golden Circle the next day and the South Coast the third day and both were much better. The South Coast was our favorite. We had a rental car but saw many tours along the way on the South Coast. Eating in Iceland is expensive but there are many dining choices all very good.
  2. I think we took the Taleri Gorge train trip. We did enjoy the Kiwis we met on board and talked to. They gave us good tips for the North Island. If time allows, the bird places are open in the afternoon. There are also tours of the peninsula that are private and not that expensive then somebody else takes care of transportation and getting you back to port (we did not go to the port so not sure if it is closer to town or the peninsula. All of you enjoy the cruise stop there.
  3. We were on a land trip in Dunedin and stayed there four days with a rental car. The day out on the peninsula was the most interesting. We saw the castle and then went out to the Royal Albatross Center. There are little viewing areas and you can see the birds fairly well without binoculars. It was a matter of when some came to feed their babies. We later went to a penguin observation place but it was wet and the penguins were very shy that day-our small group had to run quietly around to observe a few. A rental car from the port would be a good idea but remember there is one main road that can be busy early and late. Check on the albatross center for hours before you go-I think we went to the castle to kill time until it opened. The one tour thing we did in Dunedin that was less interesting was the train ride. The station and the fish and chips shop near it were better.
  4. A few years ago, we put a couple of bottles of wine (in Amazon wine diapers-but other good carriers too) in our checked luggage and got a bottle of gin in LAX to enjoy on our Tahiti cruise. All arrived safely with us and we did enjoy them on our balcony and in the dining room. I would take more another time! We were coming from Florida.
  5. We last cruised in 2017 and were not getting many brochures, etc. There was a cruise I found online for 2021 so I called and asked when the new itineraries were coming out. The agent told me and then took my email and notified me a few days before the new cruises were available. If you call, someone will help you.
  6. For moderate drinkers, most days there is a 2 for 1 happy hour. My sister-in-law and i have enjoyed our two glasses of wine each many days on a couple of cruises. And remember you can bring your own wine or spirits and keep it in your room or bring the wine to dinner for a corking fee. It will be there for as many meals as it lasts. Nobody tell me if happy hour is gone-I am counting on it for our cruise next year!
  7. When we did the Copenhagen to Stockholm cruise in summer a few years ago, we were very surprised on disembarkation day to see that several children of all ages had been on the ship. I have read reports of bad behavior on some Alaskan summer cruises here but in general any kids on board have not been very noticeable. As said above avoid kid holidays to avoid kids altogether.
  8. Thanks traveling fools, I will do a comparison for our fall trip to Europe. I never though of Savanna but it would certainly be quicker and better than ATL if the flights are right. I still think Turkish through Istanbul is a good choice especially if you have local contacts but maybe not for Europe. Enjoy your O cruise!
  9. Thanks traveling fools, I will do a comparison for our fall trip to Europe. I never though of Savanna but it would certainly be quicker and better than ATL if the flights are right. I still think Turkish through Istanbul is a good choice especially if you have local contacts but maybe not for Europe. Enjoy your O cruise!
  10. We flew Turkish business earlier this year (to India, they also have a lot of Africa connections) and it was great. A few years ago we flew Turkish Economy and it was also very good. On that trip we did an Istanbul stopover on our way to Africa and it was a good way to get over jet lag. Turkish is really good about stopovers. But they also have a wonderful lounge in Istanbul. I do not know if it is only for business etc. Traveling Fools, we were going from the island both times but went from MCO and this year Atlanta. We seldom go from JAX if we can get a direct flight from MCO or MIA but I am going to check that out after reading your entries. And Europe is different from going further away.
  11. +1 on seeing some of the things outside of Dunedin though the town is nice. Out on the adjacent Otago peninsula, among other things there is a bird observation center with good information about all the birds. We were there in late April and could observe albatrosses feeding their babies. They are indeed very interesting to watch. There is also a place for observing penguins down the road but the water option may be a better way to observe the penguins. There is a very interesting museum at the railway station in town. Enjoy New Zealand!
  12. Do not forget to get the Viking app. You can often rebook a dinner reservation or get more at a time earlier than 9pm once on board. Also, last summer, we had no trouble booking included tours and the optional we wanted second to last sign up time. However, later there were some that we though were interesting that were completely booked. On the Midnight Sun cruise, there are other options in all the Norway ports-other private tours on the day, buses to some of the interesting sites, walks to some of the good things. There are many other options than ship tours.
  13. I also do not see the "R" in the Viking design but like O's O and R ships and what I like best about Viking Ocean is the ship itself-the decor and public places. bradpole, I would be interested to hear what you like best about ) after you try the Marina or Riviera. We took 2 great cruises on the Marina but then tried Nautica. Our next cruise will be a longer Nautica cruise. I like the smaller size and the better location of the coffee bar though I miss having 4 specialty restaurant choices. That said, both of our Viking cruises were good too. We chose by itinerary first and shipboard amenities after. Viking I like for all balcony cabins useful or not (in 3 O and 2 V, we used the balcony the most on the first O in the South Pacific), the number of self washing machines available free and with safe soap included, the lectures and guest historians (I see that does not appeal to all guests and is of no use if no or few sea days), and Mamsens. Oceania wins on food though Viking is still better than mega ships etc. Viking does have cooking classes on sea days though it is prep and demo not full participation like O. Viking has a couple of reasonable spa experiences (Nordic Bath Experience $49 with spa samples and relaxing hour or two with steam and snow!) which I am hoping someone here will tell me exist on O and R ships. Viking does have a lot of Viking River cruisers converting to ocean. The one bad Viking thing it that the included excursions are mostly not good and not like their walking river excursions at all. Cruise ports are seldom close enough to towns to make it work right. All the other things are better selling points. And we are less likely to book V again if they really enforce the policy of paying a year in advance. Viking also is still a bit behind O and others on itineraries offered. But, like I said, both are good and we continue to chose by itinerary for the most part.
  14. +1 on the Caribbean being a lost cause in most seasons and some summer European ports. Off season and cooler weather make some places less crowded. Two of our best visits to Italy took place in November and January for example. There were still plenty of visitors but not the mobs of summer, fall, and late spring. There was some rain (cold, rain, etc are a matter of luck anytime) but most tourists were out and about anyway. The Caribbean has a mini shoulder season in January if you book a resort and fly instead of cruising (Cheap Caribbean and some airlines have good deals-great for us Floridians but available for others too). As for any trip these days, research will get you the best time and mode of travel.
  15. Thank you h2so4, I enjoyed your blog and will probably go back and read more about other ports. We did a land tour of North India two months ago and one of the reasons we are taking the cruise is to see a little more of India and compare the more southern cities to Delhi and Kolkata. You wrote about the poverty and garbage in Myanmar. Was there less at your Indian ports? We saw lots of garbage and free roaming animals in the cities large and small further north in India but also lots of green places and mostly happy people going about their business of all kinds. Food was good if spicy and there are many places on the sub continent that merit further visits though some must be by land.
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