I just found this website and will be taking a Med. Cruise on RCCL's Legend of the Seas 9/16/01 from Barcelona/Barcelona. Following are my ports of call:
Livorno (Florence) 7am-6pm
Venice 10am & leaving at 6pm the following day
Dubrovnik, Croatia 10am-6pm
Messina, Italy 8am-4pm
Civitavecchia (Rome) 7am-7pm
Barcelona Disembark (spend 2 extra days here)
I am wondering if I should stick to the ship's Shore Excursions or book some on my own? I have been wondering if I would be avoiding the "herd mentality" of the bus tour groups, and secure tours at a better rate on my own? Any recommendations would be greatly appreciated as well as the names of any good tour operators.
Out of Villefranche, I would like to see Nice, Cannes and Monaco but no listed tour seems to do those. I am at a loss where to start.
Your's sounds like a marvelous itinerary!! How many people are u travelling with?
If there are enough to share the expense of private tours or taxis I highly recommend that route. I just hate the big tour buses zipping me around telling me I have 20 minutes here, 30 there etc.
For tours and private guides.. check out www.portpromotions.com , as well as www.autoeurope.com
In Villefrance you will tender, but the Legend does a great job in this port. I understand the train station is only a 5-10 minute walk from the port. I would take this to Nice and Cannes early in the morning. Return to the ship for a late lunch or go to Monaco to see the Palace and the Church where Princess Grace is interned. Then you may want to go to Monte Carlo at least to witness the Grand Casino. Proper dress is required, no shorts or sandals and jacket & tie in the evening. If you can find an independent tour operator in this area, it would be ideal. Rome, I recommend a ships tour, but the Taste of Rome should work out well. I believe this is the title for the one with transportation, a brief overview of Rome, then you are given 4-6 hours on your own to tour at your leisure. We did the All Day Rome tour including the Colisseum, lunch at the Hotel Mediteranean, and the Vatican. Wonderful tour but it does not allow much time for shopping and you don't get to see it all. We ported at Livorno, but due to weather problem, all tours were cancelled to Florence. You can take a train to Florence and easily tour on your own. Just watch your time schedule. If you wish to visit the Uffizzi or Academia museums, you can purchase/reserve tickets on line. I did not have to give a credit card either and you just go to the Resevation window, and in you go. People waiting in endless lines will be envious. Never made it to Barcelona due to the fuel strikes.