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So is any one else into cruising?

(66 Posts)
MaureenM Wed 29-Feb-12 22:26:32

I am taking early retirement from teaching this Summer and so have booked my first holiday outside the expensive School holiday time. It will be in September and will be my third cruise. My OH never fancied cruising but is now a big convert, so we are really looking forward to exploring new areas in future years.
I wondered how many others on here are enthusiasts for this type of holiday.

grannyactivist Wed 29-Feb-12 22:31:16

Come on Jeni, speak up! grin

Carol Wed 29-Feb-12 22:48:21

I went on my first cruise a couple of years ago and was an immediate convert. I don't particularly like dressing up for formal dinners, meeting the captain and suchlike, but there is plenty of choice for everyone, and I could happily spend a couple of months on a cruise liner, hopping off at beautiful locations for an exploration of the area before wandering back for dinner, theatre, roulette in the casino, sing songs in the piano bar with people from lots of different countries and a meander through the book of cocktails, trying out all the different drinks that have always been a mystery till I boarded ship......and the food is amazing!

em Wed 29-Feb-12 23:18:00

Carol did you travel with a friend and share a cabin or did you go alone? I've looked at cruising and actually fancy going alone. Single cabins do seem disproportionately expensive I think. Friends I'd holiday with don't fancy cruising!

Greatnan Wed 29-Feb-12 23:21:26

No, I would hate to spend a week or more amongst crowds of strangers. I like my holidays to be as remote as possible (just like my ordinary life).

Annobel Wed 29-Feb-12 23:44:13

Never have, and don't see myself going cruising unless it is to one of the more inaccessible corners of the world - maybe Alaska or Antarctica.

Ariadne Thu 01-Mar-12 07:03:46

We did a short cruise some years ago, having always thought we wouldn't like it we thought we should at least try. It was on some huge, opulent ship, full of people, and we certainlly knew by the end that it was not for us. It was all a bit too glitzy. I like to fly somewhere, get a car, and go.

However, what I've found is that for some people it is the ideal holiday, and that is fine. I'm also aware that I am fortunate to have a very varied and busy social life, so maybe not being with other people on holiday is a priority!

Carol Thu 01-Mar-12 07:18:54

em I went with family, but had my own cabin, which meant it cost £500 more than if I'd shared. Fortunately, I was given 100 dollars to tempt me into the casino, where I won 180 dollars on roulette - first time I'd played in my life - fantastic! Also, I spent very little on board, so I didn't feel the pinch as much as I could have.

I don't usually like being sociable with other holiday makers when I'm on holiday, and don't like to pal up with people in case I get landed with someone I can't shake off, but as a family we joined in excursion groups and had a great time, and we often ended up joining the sing song in the piano bar late at night with some fantastic people. Very enjoyable.

kittylester Thu 01-Mar-12 08:41:46

We don't like being sociable on holiday either nor to we like to be away to long so we opted for River Cruises and I love it!! Up to now we have travelled by Eurostar, going by train from our home town and then changing to local trains, and had a brilliant time. There have been about 160 passengers on each ship and mostly they have been like us in terms of age and background. There are excursions included in the cost but also lots of sitting around as you sail past lots of beautiful scenery. There are no set places at meal times and the food is lovely. We are off to Amsterdam at the end of the month. smile

jeni Thu 01-Mar-12 08:45:03

Sorry. Had gone to bed. Work day. Catch up in pm.

Greatnan Thu 01-Mar-12 08:46:46

River cruises - now they do interest me, although I could just drive to the cities on the routes.

eGJ Thu 01-Mar-12 08:49:00

Glad to hear you're well enough for work jeni smile looking forward to your posts later!

Stansgran Thu 01-Mar-12 11:26:00

I've just been on a two day cruise on the Mekong-wonderful and in previous years the Irrawaddey and a different part of the Mekong. not luxury liners very simple cabins with shower and loo. no casinos,pools or climbing walls both fantastic holidays. I would always pick a small ship.

artygran Thu 01-Mar-12 11:39:59

I'm afraid being stuck on a great big boat with a lot of folks who like dressing up every night is not for me - and I don't think the dress down cruises would suit me any better really. I read an article recently where some passengers were suing an upmarket cruise line because the behaviour of certain passengers of - shall we say - a slightly raffish persuasion had spoiled the ambiance of their cruise! No, when I win the lottery, I will charter a schooner to take me round the Greek islands (if they haven't sold them all to pay off their debts!) or the Carribean. Dream on, Arty!

Jacey Thu 01-Mar-12 11:43:33

Me too Stansgran ...small ships only ..don't do the resort/block of flats ships ...probably ok if going with family, but not if travelling solo.

Ariadne Thu 01-Mar-12 11:52:07

It really does depend on what you like! Like others have said, we really do not want to travel with others etc. and, I do have some formal occasions every couple of months which means I can dress up now and then, but then I go home and dress down!

The big cruise thing fills me with horror, to be honest. But that's just me.

Greatnan Thu 01-Mar-12 14:03:50

A cruise down the Mekong - oh, yes!
I fancied taking a holiday on a flotilla round the Greek islands, until I found you had to share a toilet. A private lavatory is my 'sine qua non'.

Ariadne Thu 01-Mar-12 14:07:13

Yes, Greatnan I could go for the cruise down the Mekong too! When shall we go?

Carol Thu 01-Mar-12 14:15:32

I was against cruising, having seen my sister and husband dressed formally for most evenings on their cruises, and definitely did not want to 'meet the captain' to have a photo done. However, I went with my family on the Voyager of the Seas for a Med cruise with lots of stops in beautiful places around the coast of Italy, France and Spain, and it suited me perfectly. It was easy-going, interesting, lots of choice for entertainments and dining, plenty of quiet places for a read and a snooze, a 2-storey library with sofas (perfect for a few zzzzzz's) and various bars with themes to suit all nationalities. Lovely to sit on the side in the evening, at sea, watching dolphins playing alongside for us. Great fun, and I would go again.

kittylester Thu 01-Mar-12 14:21:22

As far as River Cruising goes Greatnan I suppose it's whatever floats your boat grin

We have driven all over parts of mainland Europe especially when the children were small, considering it to be part of their education. We now relish the down time that being on a river cruise brings plus the fact that we are taken to the attractive places rather than having the hassle of getting there ourselves. We also love organised rail holidays. When the children were little we would never dreamt of going on a package holiday, much to their disgust, but would go camping and staying in little hotels/inns etc between campsites. I reckon I've earned my little bit of luxury. smile

Airports drive me insane and the thought of a big cruise fills me with horror too, Ariadne

jeni Thu 01-Mar-12 14:32:20

As some of you know, I adore cruises. You don't have to dress up if you don't want or meet the captain! The free drinks are the draw at these does!
Waking up in a new port every morning without having to pack and unpack inbetween is fun . I suppose for me it is an extension of when oh and I used to sailour own boat to France every year. The nice thing about this is that I don't have to cook and clean!
I also don't have to go and look for the marina showers in the pouring rain.
Another advantage for me is that I get meet lots of nice people. As I live on my own and don't meet many people socially normally. This is a bonus.

Maniac Thu 01-Mar-12 16:10:34

em I fancy cruising but never done one.I like not having to pack and unpack between ports,- Don't fancy dressing up and captains table malarkey.Definitely don't like single supplements-sometimes 100%!!
Friends I share with on coach tours don't want to go cruising.
I heard of someone who offered to share ,got regular price and in the end had double room to herself.Anyone tried this?

jeni Thu 01-Mar-12 16:29:16

No always have to pay 100%supplement. But would be happy to share (I snore!!!!!!)

Greatnan Thu 01-Mar-12 16:40:47

One of the reasons for moving to France was so I was not dependent on airlines/ferries for my travel. Theoretically, I could now drive to Vladivostok (not that I want to).
I had a lovely holiday with a friend on a cabin cruiser from Narbonne to Beaucaire, through the Camargue - very restful, maximum speed is 4 knots and you tie up each night near some town or village with a restaurant. He did all the work although I quite enjoyed helping at the locks.

For many years I have taken my sister on holiday - so far to Majorca, Minorca, Crete, Paris, Monaco, Albi and several in the UK - and whilst it saved the single supplement as we shared a twin bedded room, I paid for everything so it cost me the normal two-person price. She is now too disabled to do the kind of things she used to enjoy (bars, clubs, dancing, flirting) so I am going to Manchester to bring her back here for two weeks.
I have been a bit wary of sharing with any other woman, but I now have a very good Swiss friend and we are going to Sharm el Sheik together as she also likes snorkeling on coral. It is incredibly cheap with Easyjet and she is very good company, so I am looking forward to it.
She has begun to show me various parts of Switzerland and we intend to use the beautiful Swiss rail system this summer.

The Mekong cruise is very interesting - I will do some research as I could probably add it on to my next long visit to New Zealand. I have been watching Wild China and it is a fascinating country.

Mishap Thu 01-Mar-12 17:40:03

I really don't fancy it for several reasons.

Top of the list is that neither of us are into large plates of rich food and I gather a lot of eating goes on - not our scene at all! And I would resent paying for food that I wasn't going to eat! (OH weighs about 8 stone!)

Hate dressing up at all - jeans and a T-shirt are my idea of a posh outfit!

Like to be totally free to do our own thing and explore a place in depth, rather than just dipping in and moving on.

We also like to eat breakfast at mid-day if we fancy lying in - that is why we never do hotels, only self-catering. We can eat when we like and have some privacy to slump about in a dressing gown if we want to. We always choose self-catering accommodation that has a good view, so that we can soak up some beauty from the garden or via the windows in poor weather. We are so spoiled with where we live that the views have to be special to make it worth paying out! I stood on our balcony this morning with a cup of tea, gazing across the views of the Welsh hills in the crisp sunny air - it truly is magical and we are very blessed. It makes up for lots of health problems and other burdens - it always lifts our hearts!