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  #1 (permalink)  
Old September 25th, 2003, 12:28 PM
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Default any info on the fall foilage cruise please

hi to all.

well i have the cruise bug. i loved my alaska cruise in sept and now would like to go to canada for the oct sailing to nova scotia and halifax. i somehow feel i would rather board the ship in boston instead of new york. so i can get in more cultural tours before i leave and see this great city. i loved the carnival spirit but have read mixed reveiws on the carnival victory for this cruise. any advice on the best ship to be on and tours ???

thanks for any advice. all the great tips you gave me for my first cruise was wonderful and i cant wait to hear from you again. dusty
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Old September 26th, 2003, 10:18 PM
The Scotts
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Default Re: any info on the fall foilage cruise please

We are booked for next year September 2004 for the Carnival Victory Fall Foilage 7 Day Cruise from New York to Halifax. Cat. 8A Guarn. Like Dusty we would like info as well to be planning.

We would like all info that we can get to decided on tours etc. and also anything about the Victory.

Our ports will be Boston, Portland, Syndey and Halifax.

We enjoy during tours on our own and not will the mass crowds. If anyone has any info on private taxi tours or any you went on you liked and what they were we would appreicate any info.

Thanks
The Scotts
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Old September 28th, 2003, 10:38 AM
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Default Re: any info on the fall foilage cruise please

hello 'the scotts'

im glad to see that their are others who will be on the ship and proud to post it. i am trying to make plans for what i want to do in the ports and for a day before in new york. i also do not like to do things with the mass crowds. i loved my alsaska cruise this sept and was so much more happy having planned things with only a few other people or on my own. i have read several post that peggys cove is a " hype " so i am trying to get as much info on this as i can. also i want to spend alot of time seeing alot of cultural and historical things in our ports of call before we get to canada. i have not been to the east coast and i love colonial things in general.

i hope all of your plans are coming together and if you find a reasonable hotel close to the peir ( if you staying the night before ) please let me know. i used hotwire for my stay in vancouver and got a great 4 star close to the airport with free shuttle service and other ammenities for only $46. i am going to check them out again for this cruise.

nice to talk to you and have a great cruise. dusty
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Old October 5th, 2003, 04:11 PM
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Default Re: any info on the fall foilage cruise please

Hey all...

just got back from the Carnival Victory( Sept 27, 03- Oct 4, 03) ...went to Boston, Portland, Sydney and Halifax...

so..here's my info and opinions......

Sailing out of New York...

I wasn't too thrilled about sailing out of NYC..but so many on this board said it was great..so we did it.. we flew in on Friday to Laguardia. In Detroit, the plane was overbooked, so we took a voluntary "bump" and got $300 vouchers each to fly anywhere..we had reservations in NYC & it didn't matter to us much that we didn't get there early. I wondered about our luggage..but it was right there waiting for us..as we were leaving, we had a guy come up to us asking if we needed a taxi.& we said yeah..& he said..well, he had a Lincoln & would take us to our hotel...$45...so off we went. Then there were tolls involved..so..it would have been cheaper to have gone outside & gotten a taxi...

The next mornig in NYC we walked right past the Empire State Building and up to Rockefeller plaza where the ice rink is and the NBC studios..that was cool...wished we had all day to explore. Had to check out at noon & then got a cab & headed to the pier. Our taxi driver had no idea how to get to ship..go us close & then we ended up getting out & walking about 5 blocks ...with all our luggage! (but we packed kinda light)..

Embarkation went pretty fast...we beat several busses...our luggage didn't arrive until after 7 pm..

We booked a 4A (inside cabin..level 1) on a guarantee & got upgraded to a 6A outside cabin on level 1. We had no idea what cabin we would have until we got to the pier & at curbside checkin for bags they had a list with everyone's name & cabin number. So, when we saw it was on the bottom level, we were kinda bummed until we saw we had a window and a couch & it was really big! After talking to other guests we figured out that it was a pretty good spot to be in because it was very quiet..only cabins on that deck and only cabins above you..no "public areas"..

The cruise out of NYC is amazing...the statue of liberty..the trade center site..the bridges...awesome...

Boston was a bummer...we were supposed to arrive at 1:30 PM sunday...we finally docked at 3:30...thick fog, couldnt see much. We did not book anything thru the ship. We got off the boat & there were several "vendors" right there..we wanted to take a trolley tour & they were kind of aggressive..2 different places...& we should have just taken the time to look at both....it was 4 pm & the last pick up was 5:30...so if you got off anywhere, you couldn't get back on another one...but it was interesting...$22 each. Had to be back on board by 9:30..not a problem as the weather was lousy and it was Sunday..things closed early. NO taxi's at the pier...there were busses trying to sell you a ride into town and back for $10 each...again..it was Sunday..so maybe that was the problem..

Portland...Arrived to beautiful sunny weather...got off the ship about 10:30..very nice visitors center as you walk off. They were very helpful & we had thought about a duck boat tour & asked & the guy said the trolley tour was better & we wouldn't see anything different in the water than we had already seen on the ship..so we took his advice & walked to the tour office. The town is right there...no need for any transportation..the tour was great..we also went to the Portland light house across the bay...that was beautiful...a 90 minute tour...$14 each. Very quaint shops at the waterfront...only a few blocks to the downtown area..they have a great public library..we used their internet service & wrote e-mails home..FREE....this was our favorite port..

Sydney...got off the ship about 9:15 am..they also have a very nice visitor center right at the pier. The lady called Budget for us and we rented a car for the day. They came right to the Pier & picked us up within 10 minutes & off we went to Baddek (about an hour away) . Went to the Alexander Graham Bell museum ($5.50 Canadian each)..very interesting and nice shops here in Baddek also...then we drove up the Cabot trail about 25 miles or so...back to town..walked around downtown a bit..not very touristy...but a nice little town..we thought about going to the fort..but that is 30 minutes away in the total opposite direction and the admission fee is about $14 each...had to be back on board by 5:30 pm. The car was $41 Canadian. Also, right off the pier there was a place to e-mail FREE..so we did that again..outrageous prices on the ship..

Halifax...got off the ship at 9:15 or so...VERY busy in the terminal..lots of people trying to sell you tours..we wanted a car & thought this would be no big deal as Halifax is so much bigger...well..Enterprise is there and so is Hertz..they call it that because the price "hurts"...$81 american (included gas & insurance..but still $55 without & gas is not cheap in halifax)...no matter what car you got..so we got a Volvo..nice car.,but they only had 3 cars left and enterprise had none at 9:15 am....anyway...drove to Peggy's cove and the Swiss Air Memorial...we really liked it..it was busy..tours from the ship & travelling bus tours & tours from the city..but, the rock around the place is fantastic & it was a wonderful sunny day again. So..it's a litle "touristy"...umm..I'm a tourist...we are glad we went..We were on our own schedule & would could just wander around as much as we wanted..also, the landscape were these weird rocky hills, like it had rained boulders..very cool..I know I wouldn't have wanted to be in a bus...the hurricane had hit 4 days prior to our arrival & there were trees down all over & alot of traffic lights not working, so traffic was very congested in Halifax itself. So..if you want a car in Halifax..book one ahead! I thought it would be just like Sydney & it isn't..they knew they had us & we paid for it...

Debarkation..piece of cake..the cruise director advertised "self assist"..so if you want to carry your own luggage, you can go as soon as the ship cleared customs...people were off the ship by 7:30 am! We had a 12:40 flight out & were worried about making it.( people on this board had said we might be able to carry our own luggage, so we planned and packed that way) ..we got up at 7 am, showered, had breakfast, got our luggage & walked off the ship. We needed a taxi & they send you right out & hand you a ticket with a number & then call you in that order..we waited maybe 10 minutes, very organized....while we were waiting, I found another couple (that didn't have alot of luggage) & asked if they wanted to share..so they did..only cost $15 per couple to get to Laguardia that way..we were at the airport by 9:30 am..

The ship itself...they were constantly working on cleaning & painting..i thought it was in very nice condition. I wouldn't exactly say the decor is tacky...there was alot of ceramic decorative tile & for me there were just too many patterns in the same place..the colors all matched..but it was tiring to look at...like someone wearing stripes and plaids...even if the colors match..

there are lots of places to eat..the mini buffet has the exact same food as the big one most of the time (not many seemed to notice that..so the lines were short.).the pizza was good...the Mississippi BBQ always had grilled burgers, steaks,hot dogs, chicken and french fries..very good! there was also a little spot with chinese and a sandwich deli...no little restaurants where you had to pay extra to eat...lots of seating..we had late seating at 8 pm..first table was for 4 with 2 guys as our dinner partners...not our lifestyle, so we asked to be changed & ended up at a table for 8 that only had 4 before us...2 great couples, one from NYC and one from California...it was great...the food was ok...I'm not a gourmet person..so it might have been wonderful & I didn't know it....

Overall..we had a great trip. Learned that you could find things without taking the ships tours...learned that it's ok to look at a limo driver & tell him NO!, it's cheaper to take a cab. Learned you should reserve a car in Halifax...& we didn't have enough time in any of the ports...could have stayed a couple of days in each...but that's always the case on a cruise..

We had heard alot of horror stories about Carnival, but the price was excellent and it was the time slot that worked & a 7 day cruise...our last cruise was to Alaska on the NCL Sky...we loved that..& I'd say Carnival had them beat on most everything 90% of the time....it's how you want to look at things....I wanted to have a good time on vacation & we did...don't sweat the small stuff!

So...there's some of my opinions and information...hope it helps you...

It was a blast!!
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Old October 5th, 2003, 07:35 PM
The Scotts
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Default Re: Re: any info on the fall foilage cruise please

Thanks so much,Gardenmaniac

Sounds like you all had a wonderful cruise. You sound like us, we like to do our on thing on cruises went we get off the ship.

My DH doesn't like to be hurried around and loaded like cattle on a truck.

We will take your advice on the taxi's or renting a car in Halifax. I think I've read some where on the boards that there is a Tour by Taxi in Halifax that we might look into.
We have looked at the web site about the Boston Trolley Tours, but didn't know if they pick you up at the dock or not.

We have a whole year to plan and study and learn all we can. We go next September 25, 2004.

Again so glad you enjoyed your cruise and had what sounds like a great time.
Oh, one question when you said Mini Buffett instead on the main Big one, where is the Mini Buffett at, we will be sure to use it. Also sounds like other than for breakfast you could just go to the Barb Q for sandwiches and steak, etc.

Did you try out the gym or spa area.

Getting off the ship sounded good as well not having to wait until you color or deck is called. One thing, we have our air booked with Carnival and I guess they will have a bus pick us up at the airport along with 1000 other people and will probably have a bus waiting at the pier to take us back to the air port when we get back to New York. I wonder if you can still get of like you all did it your air is booked with Carnival. If we did we might have to wait on all the other people to get off and on the bus to go back to the airport. Right!!!

Again Thanks so much for all the good info and I've made notes so I want forget all your helpful findings.

The Scotts
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Old October 5th, 2003, 09:03 PM
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Default Re: any info on the fall foilage cruise please

there are several trolley companies in Boston....I would probably e-mail them or call them & ask about picking up at the dock...I know that the Gray Line tour, Beantown Trolley is the one we were on, but that another company was there too..only saw those 2.

the food on the Lido deck (9) is all from midship back. The little mini buffets (there are 2) are the closest to midship, then you can go around either side & head toward the big buffet, & if you keep going aft, you will come to the Mississippi BBQ & the Pizza place.

Did not go to the spa or the gym area, although we did find that there were 2 more whirlpools in that area. Found those on day 5..

Take the deck plan pages that are in the big Carnival catalog with you. They will help you tremendously. All they give you is a tiny side diagram of the ship, like it was cut lengthwise & no actual floor plans of the ship. ( like looking at that layered jello stuff) You can find a floor plan of the level you are on by the elevators, but only for the floor you are on. I had thought of taking mine along & forgot.

The busses that Carnival provides leave last I was told. so..once you get off the ship, you'll just have to sit there. That may change in a year's time though.

Both Sydney and Halifax were easy to navigate. I wouldn't worry about renting a car & driving, but you do lose that historical & informative stuff you get from a tour, such as the taxi one. I did e-mail them, but they were already booked for Oct 2 & We just wanted to wait & see what the weather was before we decided what to do for the day.
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Old October 6th, 2003, 09:30 AM
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Default Re: Re: any info on the fall foilage cruise please

gardinmaniac

wow, what a great report. i have been away afew days and just read your reply. all the info was just what i wanted to know. in vancouver i felt like " one of the cattle and was herded around". it was almost like i was 2yrs old. i will take all your info and store it away so i know how to better my cruise. thanks alot and i hope you have great cruises in the future. dusty
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Old February 18th, 2004, 07:51 PM
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Default Re: Re: any info on the fall foilage cruise please

Gardenmaniac,

Thanks again so much for taking the time to answer all our questions, sound like you all have a wonderful cruise.

Your suggestions are going to make our cruise better.

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Old March 6th, 2004, 12:47 PM
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Default Re: any info on the fall foilage cruise please

Okay.. let me put my two cents in.. I've done this trip twice.. once involuntarily when the Sea was sent to Bermuda North...because of the storm in Bermuda.. We live outside of Boston and we hae seen little places like Peggy's Cove where I understand the fog rolls in very quickly and it is tourist. We found a cab driver in Halifax (just love tht place) and he took us on a tour of Halifax and to the grave yard where the victims of the Titanic are buried. Letme just say I was not in favor of this...but it turnedout to be the most moving experience ofour cruising days..Then to the Citadel for the noon bagpipe and changing of the guard. when we were ready he came back for us and dropped us off at the lovely waterfront where we had lunch.. Onour second visit we took the Duck Tour...definetely not as nice as the Boston tour and we went to the Titanic Museum.. As for people selling things at the port..I must say I loved the carts in the terminal and the ladies were great and very helpful.

Portland, definetely can be done by yourself walkin the area.. Don't forget to go to the CityMarket.. you will need a cab to get over there.. you can have lunch there.. Also, in Portland is an outlet of L.L. Bean..

Boston, well, we were stuck on the ship..30 minutes from our home.lol and we stayed on the ship. Our new friends walked the city and were impressed with the cleanliness (something we had never thought about)...they went to Cheers, Hard Rock Cafe and walked and walked.. I would highly recommend the Boston Duck Tours... as a Bostonian I had never done them until a cruiser friend came into Boston.,. more well worth the $$. Learned more about Boston and saw more of the "Big Dig" than I could imagine.

As for boarding in Boston.,.. Boston has become a great destination city for cruisers, first, the airport is 10 minute away if not less through the new Ted Williams tunnel.. Boston is a walking city ad many people want to spend a few days here devouring seafood (lobster is in during the end of the summer and early fall), museums, Red Sox (if yu can get tickets), plays. The Black Falcon Pier is away from anything and a cab or a bus ride to the Quincy Market will get you to the subway..or you can walk from there to the North End, the wonderful italian enclave of restaurants, bakeries..


After having cruised from Miami twice Ihave sworn never to cruise from there again.. The hassle of dealing with the rude people at the pier isn't worth it. In Boston the longshoremen who take your luggage are friendly and pleasant and actually glad to see you.. and don't have their hands out for tips continually..

It did seem funnyto cruise back to Boston and Newport.only 30 minutes from our home and not being able to get off the ship in Boston..but we made the best of it..In Newport we took a tour we had never done before on our own..
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Old March 27th, 2004, 03:47 PM
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Default Re: any info on the fall foilage cruise please

Just a bump for this year's cruises.
Anyone on Carnvial Victory New York to Canada Sept 2004?

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Old April 29th, 2004, 01:49 PM
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Default Re: any info on the fall foilage cruise please

We are taking a Royal Caribbean New England and Canada cruise in fall 2004. We are making our own flight arrangements. We will fly into Boston and sail from Boston. My question is how do we get from the airport to the cruise pier. I know we can get transfer from the cruise line but we would prefer to make our own arrangements going to the pier. We may buy the transfers going from the pier to the airport. Any information or advice would be appreciated.
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