It's always cold in Great Britain. It rains all the time. People drive on the wrong side of the road. The food isn't very good and the people speak "funny". Give me a few minutes and I'll try to think of a few more stereotypes. <VBG>
I love Europe. Great Britain is one of the most beautiful countries I have ever visited. It has wealth of beauty and history and the people are some of the most interesting and friendly of any in the world. I'm partial because my mom was English and I have many relatives and have been there many times. However I have yet to cruise the British Isles or the Baltic.
__________________ Cruisemates Community Leader/Moderator
"There is a great difference between being well traveled and just having been to many places." ~Me
My biggest problem with European cruises are, in no particular order, cost, length of time required to complete the entire journey, too port intensive, alternative modes of transport are better, and my wife wouldn't like the ones I'd like because it would be too cold.
The British Isles and Europe have such excellent rail systems that cruising is not really necessary. I'd rather use interior lines of communication to get around, rather than traveling about the edges.
Airfare, and pre and post cruise stays would add to the cost and time required. My personal situation makes it very difficult to plan a trip that requires more than 15 days to complete. It's tough to fit Europe, UK, Scandinavia, or Med cruises into that time frame without coming back feeling like I'd need another vacation.
Some day, perhaps, and I'd be happy to stand you to a pint at your favorite pub.
I love Europe too, I have been to Ireland, Italy and France (three separated trips). The reason why I would not choose a cruise as a mode of travel in Europe is I would prefer to be "in port" all the time. I loved staying in Tuscany for a week and tooling around the Irish countryside. I would hate to only have 8 hours in which to enjoy Paris...I wouldn't want to leave.
I love Europe and Europeans. In all our travels there, no one has ever been rude to us because we were American.
I can't wait to go back, but it will be on a big bird!!
Royale 5/85; Oceanic 7/85, 5/86, 5/89
Veracruz 7/88; Fantasy 7/97;
Tropicale 6/98; Sov. Seas 6/99;
Sensation 5/03, 5/04; Glory 9/03,Triumph 9/04; Pride 3/05
Brits, Scots, Irish, Germans, Austrians, French, and Italians. Love 'em all! If I don't speak their language, I regard that as MY problem, not theirs. I applogize, and we try to communicate the best we can, and usually do surprisingy well. As we in the US have to work much harder that Europeans (as discussed on another thread here), I actually find that my "laid back" "type B" personality fits in better there than here. Wish I could live in Europe someday!
I plan to cruise in Europe once my children are out of high school. Right now with four of them it's too hard to take more than a week at a time as I need someone (usually Nana and Gramps) to watch them and its too expensive to take them all with us. Also, its difficult for me to take more than a weeks vacation at a time.
Celebrity Century 1/09
Carnival Destiny 10/07
Carnival Destiny 9/06
Monarch of the Seas 3/06
Carnival Inspiration 8/05
Carnival Miracle 4/05
Carnival Inspiration 4/04
Sovereign of the Seas 4/03
I love to cruise Europe! I have twice and would do it again....
I like not having to schlep luggage. I like waking up to a new port every morning. I like visiting new places - getting a "taste" of them. Then I decide where I would like to travel back to for a longer visit.
Places I would go back to:
I already have gone back to Turkey, Italy and GReat Britain - They are on the list 'cause I would like to go back again!
I'd like to do a baltic cruise and a northen European cruise. I'd find many more places to come back and do an extended vacation.
So many places - so little vacation time. And now I have a 15 month old.......
DavidB - was that a personal invite - like can we stay with you when we visit. We are pretty easy to entertain, (the men in skirts will keep me amused for hours - small mind). We promise to make the bed. . My dh says he would like some - Mince & Tatties, Fried Blood Sausage and something called Glootie Dumpling. We would love to make it over to Scotland (he was born in Largs) but I'm extremely claustrophobic - so the thought of that long flight just gives me goose bumps. Maybe one day and we will be sure to drop in for a visit. TTFN Jennifer
Have cruised the med and loved it (actually was a history and culture overload)!
Have vacationed in western and central europe by car and train. Have done England and Wales, (actually found a pub in wales that had Canadian=real beer)!!!
We found it to be very interesting and fun. The natives were extremely friendly and welcoming to us. The sights were spectacular. There was so much diversity in culture and lifestyle that we had as much fun talking to people and sharing their thoughts about us as we did learining about their way of life. And we found several things, especially in the U.K. that made their way of life better than ours.
We can't wait to experience Scotland. If people in Scotland are anything like the people of Scottish background here, we are going to have a blast. I have to admit, we haven't really had a desire to vacation in eastern europe though.
Lets reverse the question. You stay on a continent, so whats the difference between a New Yorker and someone from Texas.
No difference to me New York state, Texas, Atlanta, LA, your all American to me.
But within yourselves you will see differences.
The UK stands for United Kingdom, four COUNTRIES, Scotland, England, N Ireland and Wales who had their own Kings and Queens in their COUNTRY, but given they where small and being invaded, by the French, Spanish and every other bugger (USA had not been invented then) they decided to unite through war and self preservation united under one King/Queen.,....Sorry very basic history lesson
That s what UK stands for United Kingdoms under one ruler, kingdoms united.
When referred to as the British Isles, (what you see on the map) that includes Southern Ireland (Eire) who kicked the Brits out in 1917 and although attached, have nothing to do with the UK. Britian was named after Britania on the first warrior queens, which was actually a roman word. Stopping now, boring and its history, plenty of books that can explain it better
DavidB - when you say we could "fall out" do you mean that in a rhetoric sense or are you talking about certain body parts under the kilt ? What do you wear under those things anyway? Enquiring minds want to know. And you never mentioned my menu choices - can you cook that stuff or no? I actually made the Mince and Tatties once - my dh and f.i.l said it was all right - and I have been told that was high praise coming from two Scotsmen. TTFN Bud - Jennifer
We may have a "fall out" if you lump the Texans in with the New Yorkers. Just kidding!! It's kind of like refering to a Scot as a Brit. There's nothing wrong with the Europeans, especially the UK group. I think half the UK is in Houston working in the "oil patch". I work with a bunch of transplants. There's nothing like hearing "y'all" pronounced with a heavy Scottish accent!
My husband and I are finally at the point in our lives where we have the money, vacation time (the European group really has it made there), and no kids (I have cats instead) to take longer, more costly trips. For our ten year anniversary, we have a Mediterranean cruise booked next year. Eventually, we'll make it to the British Isles and northern Europe. Because of the cost and lack of vacation time, it's harder for your average American to make it over there. There's so much to see in the US, most people decide to stay here for their vacation time.
There's nothing wrong with giving us a history lesson. You have more of it than we do. Texans fought the Mexicans for our independence then willingly surrendered it to the United States. The US has only managed to have one civil war (War Between the States). Really boring compared to the amount of historical events in Europe.
While I truly love all of Europe we've seen, and the people too, there are a few differences for which one visiting for the first time from the US should be prepared.
If you are visiting in the summer, be aware that air conditioning is not as universally present there as it is in most of the US. We stayed at a two-star hotel in Skagway, Alaska that had AC. In the US almost all hotels, motels, restaurants, and shops have AC. Heck, even the Motel 6 has AC! But in much of Europe, this just isn't so. In many areas, one must stay at a fairly high end hotel to get AC.
Also, in Germany and Austria (albeit 12 years ago) we discovered that not just every hotel room had a private bath! So the idea of staying at one of those quaint "guest house" inns failed due to my strong preference for a private bath.
Tastes may differ, but we personally find those bus tours of Europe to be absolutely exhausting! On our last one, they got us up earlier in the morning than they did to me in the military! So, for our land trips we prefer to "headquarter" in one or two cities (such as London and then Dublin) and then take day trips via tour bus or rented car. Perhaps we'll try a river cruise in a few years. We did such bus tours England, Ireland, and Scotland in 1998 and in 2001. We noticed a disturbing thing about tour busses that had changed in those three years. The bus restrooms had been eliminated or locked up! In 2001, our tour guide said "Oh, well, we'll stop every three hours, that should be good enough for everybody." NOT!!
And of course, for those European destinations that are "cruise accessable", cruising is the way to go. And for land stays, make sure your accomodations are what you assume, as assumptions can be wrong. But then, go and have a great time!
Banker, sorry pal. I did not aim for my reply to come over as I thought you had asked a stupid question, it was a great question.
I was actually when writing the reply rebuking myself for going off on one,,,get me started on a question and I can go on and on.
And yes we are Brits, but individual country comes first still, for me Scottish.
Kyriecat, who are you sailing with and what's the itinery, as stated above by Richard expect something different, but I'm sure you will both love the experience.
Richard you make some great points. Europe is diverse in people and in culture and how you gys see "acceptable" will vary greatly from country to country. I cannot believe that they took you on tour that did London and Dublin in one day. I would expect to visit both and pushing it within 6 days!
And another thing when you come to Scotland, air conditioning will not be a factor at anytime, bring a warm jacket and thats for bed !!!!
Jen to quote the old seaside postcard. when the Scotsman was asked by the American couple. "Can you tell whats worn under the kilt"? He replied "Nothing, its all in perfect working order" <G>
DavidB, you ask a loaded question, "Whats wrong with Europe".
I personally have no desire to visit Europe, although I would love to
visit Great Britain, Ireland, The Netherlands, or Norway, (among others).
If you guys want to lump yourselves in with Europe, thats O.K. with me.,
I have never been across the pond because of time, money, and
I hate airports. I love flying, I just hate airports.One of these days
the wife & I will invade London, and hopefully Dover.
I just wish they would learn to drive on the right side of the road.
Post Edited (08-28-04 14:07)
Mardi Gras 1986 / 1987, Emerald Seas 1988, Jubilee 1989 / 2002, Sunward II 1991, Sea Breeze 1993, Seaward 1995, Celebration 1998, Norwegian Sea 2000, Destiny 2002 /2008, Rhapsody OS 2003, Conquest 2004 / 2005 / 2008, Radiance OS 2004, Pride Of America 2006, Triumph 2007 / 2012 (x2), Grandeur OS 2008, Holiday 2009, Fantasy 2009, Splendor 2010, Elation 2010, Victory 2011
Joemo, yes my friend my question was loaded and it was intentional.
Maybe its just how you phrased it, but you say you have no desire to visit Europe, fine. I can execpt that.
But you then say "although I would love to visit Great Britain, Ireland, The Netherlands, or Norway, (among others)".
Sorry but I'm confused and this is slightly sacarastic, but are these places not in Europe?
This actually takes my questions to another level, what do Continental Americans think "Europe" is?
Joemo, not meaning to get a you personally, but I think your statement underlines what some of my across the pond friends think of as Europe. We as Brits are in Europe as its the CONTINENT we live in, in the same way America, Africa, Asia, Australia are continents
David, You ask a very good question. Actually, I am considering a couple of European cruises within the next few years including a Med cruise. However, I don't generally think of the UK as a cruise destination. For a number of years, I honestly didn't think of the UK as a travel destination at all as I am one of those people who love beautiful dramatic scenery and all the photos that I had ever seen were the "standard" ones of quaint English countrysides and Big Ben...now before you begin to get your shorts in a knot, my view of the UK has changed. I am an amateur photographer and I have been participating in a competition site with an "international" flavor. Increasing, photographers from the UK have begun to participate there and I am in awe of some of the landscapes, particularly Yorkshire, the Lakes Country and Scotland....absolutely stunning!!! I still don't want to cruise there because I want to spend some serious time in the countryside with my camera and some of my photographer buddies.
For the record I was on a European 26 day land tour about 18 years. Me and my two buddies had a fantastic time. The reason I have never taken a European cruise is because I never hear about any. If a person is looking for one you can find one. But it is not advertised very well. I will see 20 advertisement for Carribean,Alaska,Panama before I will see one about Europe. However, that being said I think I will now check some out.
Dawn Princess 2004
Emerald Princess 2008
Regarding the mince and tatties: My parents and grandparents were all born in Scotland. They are all deceased now except for my dear mom (83 yrs old and still as spry as can be) Our family's traditional Christmas Eve dinner consists of mince and mashed potatoes. We've been doing that for as long as I can remember. Every now and then my mom will suggest something different for a change, but every time she gets out-voted as thats the only time in the year we get mince for dinner. Its like a special treat for us. As far as the blood sausage ("black puddin")...ugh....I could never understand how they could eat that. Give me a old fashioned meat pie or bridie (sp?) or typical British fish & chips anytime. Love those!
2/13/09 Carnival Paradise
2/22/09 Freedom of the Seas
83/Azure Seas; 84/Song of America; 88/Stardancer; 92/Jubilee; 96/Viking Serenade; 97/Holiday; 99/Enchantment OT Seas; 00/Elation; 01,02,02,03/Ecstasy; 02/Voyager OT Seas; 03/Victory; 04/Adventure OT Seas; 05/Sapphire Princess 05,05,05,06,07/Monarch OT Seas; 06,07,08,08/Paradise; 06/Freedom OT Seas; 07 Pride; 07 Pearl; 08/Valor; 08/Serenade OT Seas; 08/Coral Princess
LaurieM - ahh! tradition. I totally agree with you on the blood sausage. My dh loves it. It was the only thing he requested his father bring back when he went to Ayrshire for a holiday. I guess we should mention Haggis as well - lol. Let me hear any defend that dish. Meat pie - steak and kidney - now there's a dish. Love it - just don't like soaking the kidney to make it - it looks so gross - but it does taste good. I had to convince the kids it was a "steak and another steak" pie so they would eat it. TTFN Jennifer
Great thread, by the way. Actually, in Edinburgh about three years ago in July, we were subjected to a non-air conditioned hotel on one of those horrid bus tours, and it was a bit "stuffy". However, on subsequent nights in the West Highlands, It was fine without AC. And we were miserable in Dublin and London without AC, and we couldn't open the windows because of the traffic noise.
I mention these things not to discourage folks from traveling to Europe, but just to educate them that if you (or your tour) books anything less than four star hotels there, you may (or may not) get AC when you need it. Heck, in Germany, you might not even get a private bath!
There are some great cruises of Europe. We did the RSSC Mariner Nice to Rome a couple of years back, and are booked on the Diamond of the same line for Venice to Athens next May. We had a Radisson cruise on the Song of Flower booked for Sept. '03 that went from Edinburgh around the north tip of Scotland, over to Dublin, to Wales, around to London, and over to near Paris. Had to cancel due to the birth of first grandson. Now, Radisson has sold this ship, and has no such itinerary. Would like to book Silversea's cruise where they embark from the Tower Bridge in London (giving the chance for a pre-cruise stay) and will do so just as soon as our AOL/TW stock rises to its 1999 levels!