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Old 03-14-2013, 12:21 AM   #1156
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I had a moment of wondering if it was going to load or not, but it finally did. It was slow going, but I slogged through it successfully.
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Old 03-14-2013, 06:54 AM   #1157
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Wake up everyone!

LOL - I titled this post WAKE UP EVERYONE because if the rest of you golds are as tired as I am this morning. we need to Wake Up! I'm tired this morning but so glad we go the excursions booked. We'll do our online check in some time today.
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Old 03-14-2013, 08:42 AM   #1158
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LOL - I titled this post WAKE UP EVERYONE because if the rest of you golds are as tired as I am this morning. we need to Wake Up! I'm tired this morning but so glad we go the excursions booked. We'll do our online check in some time today.
Good luck, last time I checked the site was down.....
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Old 03-14-2013, 11:47 AM   #1159
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Pompeii: Back from the dead is on the Military Channel tonight. It will be on again on the 15th at 11AM.
Thanks!!!! I just set my DVR to record it! My DD8 is really fascinated with Pompeii!
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Old 03-14-2013, 11:51 AM   #1160
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Thanks!!!! I just set my DVR to record it! My DD8 is really fascinated with Pompeii!
DS (now 12) was 9 when we went in 2010, was also fascinated with Pompeii and demanded that we go there. We went for him and all he did was COMPLAIN while we were there. It was so HOT and a LOT of walking that he didn't enjoy it at all....We are not going back this time!
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Old 03-14-2013, 01:54 PM   #1161
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DS (now 12) was 9 when we went in 2010, was also fascinated with Pompeii and demanded that we go there. We went for him and all he did was COMPLAIN while we were there. It was so HOT and a LOT of walking that he didn't enjoy it at all....We are not going back this time!
I am sure she will be the same, but between my DH, myself and the other 4 kids, someone is always entertaining her or engaging her, so we should be okay.

But, that does bring up the challenge with this cruise. All the busy port days! The first 4 days are going to be a killer! I have 2 fair skinned Irish kids who just melt with the heat. I am trying to trade of busy days and more relaxing days, but Rome and Naples being right together will be tough.

This is what we have booked so far:

Monaco, Monte Carlo and Eze, all day tour
Piza, climb the tower, departs mid day (so they can sleep in a little)
Rome, Exclusive Sistine chapel with Rome on your own (we can go at our own pace for some of the time) all day
Naples, Pompeii, Sorrento and Capri, all day
SEA DAY, thank goodness
Venice, arrive in afternoon, (thank goodness again) doing Secret Venice walk
Venice day 2, on our own. We will most likely be doing the 11:55 Secret itineraries and the clock tower after that chilling out and making our way back to the ship.
Dubrovnik, love that we don't get into town until afternoon. We are signed up for the "walk the walls" tour.
Sea day!
Malta, Segway on our own. I went to sign up at midnight on Platinum booking day and it was sold out, so we did it on our own. We have to be at their office at 11:15, so again, not too early.
Sea day again!

Barcelona, I can't believe the trip is over already...

I guess it isn't too bad except for Rome and Naples...but we are hardy folk right, just hope it isn't too hot yet...
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Old 03-14-2013, 02:15 PM   #1162
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DS (now 12) was 9 when we went in 2010, was also fascinated with Pompeii and demanded that we go there. We went for him and all he did was COMPLAIN while we were there. It was so HOT and a LOT of walking that he didn't enjoy it at all....We are not going back this time!
We did Pompeii as part of a longer tour in 2007 that went to Capri and Sorrento first. So it was hot in the afternoon when we got to Pompeii. The boys were 11 and 9 at the time.

This time they asked to go back as they are taking Latin I this year and their text is set in Pompeii. They are 17 and 15 when we go. But they did ask that it be the ONLY thing we do and if it wasn't a MORNING tour, then forget it. It leaves at 8:30 AM.
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Old 03-14-2013, 02:26 PM   #1163
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Originally Posted by poohmomof5 View Post
I am sure she will be the same, but between my DH, myself and the other 4 kids, someone is always entertaining her or engaging her, so we should be okay.

But, that does bring up the challenge with this cruise. All the busy port days! The first 4 days are going to be a killer! I have 2 fair skinned Irish kids who just melt with the heat. I am trying to trade of busy days and more relaxing days, but Rome and Naples being right together will be tough.

This is what we have booked so far:

Monaco, Monte Carlo and Eze, all day tour
Piza, climb the tower, departs mid day (so they can sleep in a little)
Rome, Exclusive Sistine chapel with Rome on your own (we can go at our own pace for some of the time) all day
Naples, Pompeii, Sorrento and Capri, all day
SEA DAY, thank goodness
Venice, arrive in afternoon, (thank goodness again) doing Secret Venice walk
Venice day 2, on our own. We will most likely be doing the 11:55 Secret itineraries and the clock tower after that chilling out and making our way back to the ship.
Dubrovnik, love that we don't get into town until afternoon. We are signed up for the "walk the walls" tour.
Sea day!
Malta, Segway on our own. I went to sign up at midnight on Platinum booking day and it was sold out, so we did it on our own. We have to be at their office at 11:15, so again, not too early.
Sea day again!

Barcelona, I can't believe the trip is over already...

I guess it isn't too bad except for Rome and Naples...but we are hardy folk right, just hope it isn't too hot yet...
Trust me, we're as pale and pasty as they come and we survived!!! TONS of SPF 100 before we left the ship. We had THREE full days in a row in 2010 and were exhausted when we got to Corsica, that we all just collapsed and didn't do much. In retrospect I wish we had, it was a beautiful island..... The time to/from Rome is 90 min so plenty of time to rest there. No idea on the itinerary for your Naples excursion, but my guess would be Capri and Sorrento in the AM with Pompeii in the PM, which is about 30 min away from the port, so you can relax a bit on the way back......
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Old 03-14-2013, 03:01 PM   #1164
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Trust me, we're as pale and pasty as they come and we survived!!! TONS of SPF 100 before we left the ship. We had THREE full days in a row in 2010 and were exhausted when we got to Corsica, that we all just collapsed and didn't do much. In retrospect I wish we had, it was a beautiful island..... The time to/from Rome is 90 min so plenty of time to rest there. No idea on the itinerary for your Naples excursion, but my guess would be Capri and Sorrento in the AM with Pompeii in the PM, which is about 30 min away from the port, so you can relax a bit on the way back......
I think our tour at Naples actually starts at Pompeii, so that will be good before it isn't too hot. Then bus to Sorrento. 90 minutes or more of free time there, so that will be pleasant. Probably find a nice cafe to have lunch and do a little browsing.

Then we take the Hydrofoil direrctly from Sorrento to Capri. Take the Funicular up to Capri town and get about an hour or so of free time and the Funicular back down and Hydrofoil directly to Naples. So, I think thats a good mix of touring/fun.
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Old 03-14-2013, 03:10 PM   #1165
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I think our tour at Naples actually starts at Pompeii, so that will be good before it isn't too hot. Then bus to Sorrento. 90 minutes or more of free time there, so that will be pleasant. Probably find a nice cafe to have lunch and do a little browsing.

Then we take the Hydrofoil direrctly from Sorrento to Capri. Take the Funicular up to Capri town and get about an hour or so of free time and the Funicular back down and Hydrofoil directly to Naples. So, I think thats a good mix of touring/fun.
Sometimes if there are a lot of people on the tour, one bus does the tour one way while the other one does it in reverse. So it might not be the way you think. In 2010, we did Nice and Eze with Wine and Cheese (I don't think they offer it anymore). We went to Nice first than Eze 2nd, there were 2 buses, the first to leave did Eze first. As the tour that went to Eze second we got scr**ed as by the time we got to Eze the afternoon fog had rolled in and Eze was completely covered. It wasn't completely miserable, but it took the magical quality of the town away......
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Old 03-14-2013, 03:13 PM   #1166
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Hello All, It's been a while

Hi there, thought I would get on the thread and see what is going on since I booked my Palo's and 1 excursion last night 9 pm, sorry, I live in Cali...

So excited for this vacation. Leaving a little early to be with family in Madrid area, Zaragoza and the Pyrenees Mountains. So lucky!

We are kind of do-it-yourself'ers and don't book many excursions. We plan on hiring a car in Naples, DH, Myself and DS 14, DD 10, both very good kids. The company we are using is AP Tours, we used them in 2007 as well, very good company and very happy with the service. They work in groups of 1-3 and 4-6 people, we have 4. Would anyone who has a party of 2 like to join us in our excursion? This is our plan, Sorrento, Positano, and some good italian pizza, if you would like to join us let me know. We've done Pompeii.
Kay

This is what AP Tours sent me:

Hi Kay

Great to hear from you again. It is wonderful to hear you are coming back this way.
With your ship leaving at 5:30pm we would need to cut the below tour a little short, possibly only Sorrento and Positano ( half of the Amalfi Coast road ) but you can discuss with the driver on the day the main places you wish to visit.
There are lots of amazing pizza restaurants near the port to pick up a pizza before heading back to the cruise ship, just mention it to the driver on the day so he schedules it in to the tour.

Here is an idea of an itinerary that has developed over years of experience.
This tour is conducted by a professional English speaking driver, who during the day will convey his knowledge and passion for this beautiful part of Italy.


Amalfi Coast tour) - Pick up and drop off Naples Port.
Typically the tour includes:

Sorrento; here you will have free time to explore the delightful historical centre, with its numerous churches and shops to suit all, or enjoy a drink in the main square and ‘people-watch’ with the locals.
A full tour of the Amalfi Coast, including lots of photo opportunities to capture one of the most famous coast roads in the world.
Free time in the picturesque town of Positano. Your driver will drop you right in the heart of Positano, saving precious time and your legs! giving you longer to wander the traffic free lanes filled with linen shops, art galleries and cafes.
Time permitting one of the below towns …
Amalfi, you may wish to take a short stroll to admire the stunning cathedral of St. Andrew, visit the paper mill or just enjoy the main piazza and its shops.
Ravello, enjoy the famous gardens of Villa Rufolo, with its breathtaking view over the Amalfi Coast, wander through the main town area and visit the Cathedral. Enjoy a cool drink in the main Piazza, before meeting up again with your driver.


No stop in Italy is complete without a traditional homemade pasta lunch; your private driver on your request will suggest a restaurant with true Italian hospitality.

**Please keep in mind your itinerary is totally flexible and can be changed to your personal wishes. Basically the vehicle is yours.**



REDUCED PRICE FOR 2013:
Price for vehicle NOT per person...

Cost for the air-conditioned vehicle with English speaking driver for a tour would be

Groups of 1-3 people - 340 Euro
Groups of 4-6 people - 400 Euro
Groups of 7-8 people - 450 Euro.


All tolls, parking, petrol and taxes are included.
Not included are entrance tickets, ferry tickets if you opt for itinerary 2, lunch and tips.
Payment is on the day direct to the driver in cash only, Euro.
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Old 03-14-2013, 03:28 PM   #1167
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But, that does bring up the challenge with this cruise. All the busy port days! The first 4 days are going to be a killer! I have 2 fair skinned Irish kids who just melt with the heat. I am trying to trade of busy days and more relaxing days, but Rome and Naples being right together will be tough.

This is what we have booked so far:

Monaco, Monte Carlo and Eze, all day tour
Piza, climb the tower, departs mid day (so they can sleep in a little)
Rome, Exclusive Sistine chapel with Rome on your own (we can go at our own pace for some of the time) all day
Naples, Pompeii, Sorrento and Capri, all day
SEA DAY, thank goodness
Venice, arrive in afternoon, (thank goodness again) doing Secret Venice walk
Venice day 2, on our own. We will most likely be doing the 11:55 Secret itineraries and the clock tower after that chilling out and making our way back to the ship.
Dubrovnik, love that we don't get into town until afternoon. We are signed up for the "walk the walls" tour.
Sea day!
Malta, Segway on our own. I went to sign up at midnight on Platinum booking day and it was sold out, so we did it on our own. We have to be at their office at 11:15, so again, not too early.
Sea day again!

It will be hot, you can count on that! Our mistake first time out was full day port days every day we were in port (except one afternoon in Pisa and one morning only in Villefranche and that was when Villefranche was the next to last stop as they used to go the other way around).

My advice when dealing with kids on these port intensive days is to keep them hydrated, let them sleep during transporation, bring breakfast to the cabin for them if they want so they don't have to get up quite so early. Lay their clothes out for them so it's easier to get up and dressed. Sunscreen, hat (if they'll wear one). Some portable snacks even if it's a box of cereal off the breakfast buffet - we take a lot of froot loops in our bag. While you want them to take everything in, remember that they aren't going to be as interested as you so if they are drifting off or staring into space, don't worry about it. We make sure to talk to our kids ahead of time about behavior and even when they are tired, they still need to be courteous and polite to us, to each other, to the other guests on the tour, and to the tour guide(s). Make sure to have sunglasses, don't fret if they want to bring their handheld video game - they are likely listening to the tour guide talk even if they aren't looking out the windows. Encourage them to find a shady spot to stand if available and no worries if they do actually sit down on the ground. They'll get up.

And when you get back on ship, don't push dinner if they don't want to go - they may want to run off and play with their new friends or youth programs - after all, for most of our kids, it's more about being on a cruise ship than it is about what they'll see or do in the ports.

Try to find something fun about each excursion - maybe get gelato at each port, or have a particular souvenir to collect - that's how my boys started collecting thimbles and spoons - we started in Capri in 2007. It became a quest. Still is.

And on the sea days, let them sleep til they wake up and you absolutely HAVE to get them up so your cabin can be cleaned Oh, we did have to enforce a curfew on nights before early excursion times because we knew they needed to be more rested - they complained the first couple of nights but were glad the rest of the time
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Girlfriends Trip ~ February 25 - 27 ~ Grand Floridian
Spring Break ~ March 16 - 23 ~ Animal Kingdom Kidani Villas
Hawaiian Vacation ~ June 9 - 15 ~ Aulani
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Old 03-14-2013, 03:32 PM   #1168
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Our TA emailed today that we are getting a refund of $65.21 because tax adjustment. We're in a Cat 5C, 4 people, one cabin. She sent our revised confirmation showing it. Hasn't shown up yet on our credit card statement but hopefully will soon. We had heard the Greece cruise before this one was also getting a little back, but we did 3 with DVC and 1 with cash so haven't heard what happens with that if anything - I'm guessing nothing - although it would be nice to see 1/4 in terms of OBC
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Old 03-14-2013, 03:33 PM   #1169
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Sometimes if there are a lot of people on the tour, one bus does the tour one way while the other one does it in reverse. So it might not be the way you think. In 2010, we did Nice and Eze with Wine and Cheese (I don't think they offer it anymore). We went to Nice first than Eze 2nd, there were 2 buses, the first to leave did Eze first. As the tour that went to Eze second we got scr**ed as by the time we got to Eze the afternoon fog had rolled in and Eze was completely covered. It wasn't completely miserable, but it took the magical quality of the town away......
Good to know! I am not a freak planner, but I don't love surprises too much either!
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Old 03-14-2013, 03:45 PM   #1170
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It will be hot, you can count on that! Our mistake first time out was full day port days every day we were in port (except one afternoon in Pisa and one morning only in Villefranche and that was when Villefranche was the next to last stop as they used to go the other way around).

My advice when dealing with kids on these port intensive days is to keep them hydrated, let them sleep during transporation, bring breakfast to the cabin for them if they want so they don't have to get up quite so early. Lay their clothes out for them so it's easier to get up and dressed. Sunscreen, hat (if they'll wear one). Some portable snacks even if it's a box of cereal off the breakfast buffet - we take a lot of froot loops in our bag. While you want them to take everything in, remember that they aren't going to be as interested as you so if they are drifting off or staring into space, don't worry about it. We make sure to talk to our kids ahead of time about behavior and even when they are tired, they still need to be courteous and polite to us, to each other, to the other guests on the tour, and to the tour guide(s). Make sure to have sunglasses, don't fret if they want to bring their handheld video game - they are likely listening to the tour guide talk even if they aren't looking out the windows. Encourage them to find a shady spot to stand if available and no worries if they do actually sit down on the ground. They'll get up.

And when you get back on ship, don't push dinner if they don't want to go - they may want to run off and play with their new friends or youth programs - after all, for most of our kids, it's more about being on a cruise ship than it is about what they'll see or do in the ports.

Try to find something fun about each excursion - maybe get gelato at each port, or have a particular souvenir to collect - that's how my boys started collecting thimbles and spoons - we started in Capri in 2007. It became a quest. Still is.

And on the sea days, let them sleep til they wake up and you absolutely HAVE to get them up so your cabin can be cleaned Oh, we did have to enforce a curfew on nights before early excursion times because we knew they needed to be more rested - they complained the first couple of nights but were glad the rest of the time
This is the best part about having 2 connecting rooms, we have let NUMEROUS days go by without the kids room being cleaned, but at least mine gets done and we get any needed supplies refreshed.
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