We are booked on Mercury, Rio to Valparaiso around Cape Horn, departing January 6, 2002. If you have sailed this route, any info on ports, weather, etc. would be appreciated. Also, any tips or experience with Mercury would be appreciated. I've been on Celebrity before, but not the Mercury.
We sailed this last January. The weather ranges from the 90's to low 50's. Many on the cruise had no idea that half of it would be spent in windy and cold conditions. The ride around the Horn is a crapshoot I guess. It was so rough for us that the waves were splashing over the top of the nightclub; we made it past the Horn, but after about five hours of bad seas, the Captain turned the ship around. They cancelled the big Midnight Buffet because the Ice Sculptures would have broken.
The ports are interesting but you really need their excursions because everything is a long bus ride away from the ship. Penguins are fun and you see tons of them. This is a good way to get a taste of South America.
The Mercury is an awesome ship. We took her through the Panama Canal last year. We were so impressed we re-booked the Mercury for Feb. 5 South America for the Rio cruise. You can't go wrong for service, food and a beautiful ship to see the exotic ports you are going too. The weather could be a hit and miss like many itinaries but what the hey your booked on one of Celebrities best ships imho. Happy cruising Rix
Does anyone know why Celebrity will deploy Zenith instead of Mercury to South America during the 2002-2003 season? Has Mercury been under booked? And also, with the weather sometimes being so rough down around Cape Horn, why would they want a smaller vessel which (at least in my mind, but I have no technical knowledge) couldn't handle stronger seas as well?
After further research, they are showing the Zenith for the next season, 2002-2003. It appears that the Mercury is still doing it this coming year. If you know different, please let me know. I checked some agencies, and they also show the Mercury for next year. Celebrity is also changing the itinerary for a 12-day trip year after next. They are making their Baltic trips shorter next year also. I loved the itinerary for the Galaxy this year on the 14-day trip. I will not go on a 10-11 day trip. That is the reason I did not go with Princess, but they shorten the trips and get more of them in that way.