Tuesday 3 June 2014

Cruise around the West Mediterranean

As this years holiday we went on our first cruise.

I can say I'm not the type of person that I thought would
enjoy a cruise and my husband really thought he wouldn't
enjoy it.

How wrong were we!!!

It was amazing, relaxing, enjoyable and I would do it again in a heartbeat.
The experience was like no other holiday
and apart from our honeymoon it was the best holiday I've ever had.

Welcome on board your cruise ship

Our holiday was on the Ventura P&O Cruise Ship

From the start P & O Cruises make the experience as easy as possible.
When you book your cruise through them 
you are given a login onto their website.
Everything you need to know is at your availability.
Everything you need to complete is listed for you and anything you haven't
done is indicated.
You can book and purchase things before you go - day trips, drinks packages, etc.

We got a flight from Manchester airport to Genoa.
As soon as we arrived at the airport you could tell it was going to be
a different experience.
A member of staff was waiting by the check-in desks.
He greeted us and went through a couple of forms with us.
When we checked in we said goodbye to our luggage and didn't see it again
till outside our door on the ship.

We actually paid extra and went in the VIP lounges at the airport.
I'd say it's well worth the cost.
You have comfy seats, free wi-fi, food and drink available at
no extra cost.
This meant that we could all sit in comfort and eat bacon butties
whilst waiting for our flight.
Having a nice cup of tea, coffee, fruit juices, soft drinks and other beverages.
Our flight was at 7:30am so we had to be at the airport for 5:30am.

I think everyone on the flight was a passenger on the ship
so you could get to know some of the other people going
before you even got there.

When we arrived at Genoa we were directed to coaches waiting for us.
There were tons of staff to help and guide you.
Then when we arrived at port we had our pictures taken
and we booked in.
At this point you are supplied with your key cards for the week.
This key card is your access to the ship, used for purchasing items
and your keycard.
Even Little Red had one - which he loved.
He would of loved to keep it but you aren't allowed to :-(.

The cruise is all inclusive but it doesn't include soft drinks and alcohol.
You can eat 24 hours a day.
Fruit juices are supplied with breakfast , water, tea & coffee are supplied all day.

Our room was similar to this one except the bathroom and wardrobe were
in slightly different places.

When we arrived on ship we were greeted and then made our way to our cabins.
As you walked in you had a walk in wardrobe, safe and bathroom.
In the bathroom you have a shower, toilet and sink.
Then you make your way into your room.
We had twin beds due to Little Red's ladder.
Little Red's bed came down out of the ceiling which he thought was brilliant.

The room was immaculate.
You each have a cabin steward (ours was Lea)
She came in every morning to tidy up and clean.
She put our beds to the day time set-up with a cushion etc.
The whilst we were at our meal in the evening she gets your beds ready to sleep in.
Your towels are tidied or changed and everywhere is cleaned.

The ship has everything you can imagine.
Shops, restaurants, pub, theatre, spa, gym, kids club.


We managed to get a cabin near the mid ship.
This meant I could access most things just using the lifts.

On our cruise we got a flight to Genoa, 
the next day the ship docked at Livorno.
So Little Red got to see the leaning tower of Pisa.

Unfortunately he wasn't old enough to walk up the tower
but he says it is okay he'll come again when he is 9 1/2 years old.

The next day was at sea (which was really lucky) so I managed to
rest and recover from the day before.

The ship had the most children's club.
Little Red loved it so much he was wanting to go from
the minute he woke up.
He had soo much fun and loved spending time in it.
The brilliant thing was the club would shut at 5pm for tea.
Little Red had a brilliant kids buffet of hot and cold
foods to eat from.
Mr Bump and Miss Sunshine came to see them at tea as well.
Then at 6pm the club re-opened.
This meant we could go down to the resturant and have a beautiful meal.
Little Red didn't want to spend and hour in a formal dinning setting.
It was fantastic.
He was having fun and we got to be adults and enjoy a beautiful meal.
The waiters were fantastic and made each evening special.
I couldn't go every night as my illness played up
but when I did I loved it.

My mum and dad had breakfast, 11'is, dinner, afternoon tea & evening meal.
I couldn't manage it but I treated myself on a couple of days
and had afternoon tea.
They had beautiful cakes, warm scones and toasted tea cakes.
There was also a Chocolate afternoon where they had
hundreds of cakes, chocolate fountain and bread and butter pudding.

 Our next stop was Naples.
We decided to make our own way rather than going on a trip.
We got a taxi from the post and made our way to Herculaneum.
Little Red really enjoyed it.
With Pompei it's really big and it's mostly the bottom parts of the buildings.
Where as with Herculaneum has quite a lot of the houses, rooms etc intact.

The next day we spent at sea.
Another beautiful day of relaxing and having fun.

The next day we went to Dubrovnik. 
D say it was so beautiful, sunny and fantastic that
he would love to live there.

We spent the morning in the old city inside the fortified walls.
It's beautiful and amazing.

We only spend that evening, night and next morning at sea.
Then we arrived at Venice.
Our ship is one of the last to be allowed to dock in Venice.
Due to the damage being caused to Venice they aren't going to be allowing
ships into dock.
It was amazing going in because we were looking down on 4 story flats.
The ship is 19 stories high so you can imagine how big
it is to the building below.
We went off peak and it was still packed and super busy.
I struggled with the noise but it was amazing to go and see.
I don't think I'd go again as there are just too many tourists for me.
That was one thing I found with the holiday.
I found it easier when it wasn't as busy and noisy.
When it was I really struggled.
I'm still very excited about the fact I've been.

I cannot put into words how amazing this holiday was.
The staff were so helpful, the ship was so beautiful.
We had so much fun!
As someone who is disabled I would highly recommend a cruise.
They make the ship so easy to negotiate and they try and help you
enjoy your holiday to the fullest.
I can honestly say there wasn't anything I would complain about.
It was a brilliant holiday and I'd love to do it again.


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