Originally Posted by Sandar
Thinking about a Mediterranean Cruise 2011. How are the prices for hotels in Barcelona or Venice. Any recommendations where to stay? Do the hotels pick you up at the airport or is it only Taxi? Anyone know the cost involved? Is one community easier to deal with, people, airport, language issues, etc?
Also, when going on a Rome excursion, it states this year that you only can purchase them on the ship. Has anyone had trouble getting the excursion you want? I'm interested in visiting the Vatican for sure and sightseeing of Rome. Are there any ports and excursions that were especially good? I'd like to hear the good and the bad. Also if you've been on another cruise line instead of Carnival, I'd still like your input.
The best recommendation I can give is to use Priceline. Bid on a 5* in the Las Ramblas area of Barcelona. If you are unsuccessful then lower your star rating to 4*. You will receive a good hotel. I have done this three times and have received the Grand Eurostar Marina twice and it is a great hotel. The most I've paid is $100. The regular price, as of last Spring, was $285.
I would do the same for Venice. There is a very good website that gives current winning bids and explains bidding strategy. It is www.biddingfortravel.com
If Carnival has said that you can ONLY use their excursions in Rome then that is not true.
You can book your own excursion and I recommend you do so. I used Manilo Tranquilli with Limousine Service in Rome and had one of the best private tours with port pick up and return. There are also myriad of other private tours you can book.
Have a great cruise and enjoy the Mediterranean. Barcelona, Rome and Venice are some of the most beautiful places you will ever visit.