MSC Cruise

Susan Hegarty 12 May 2013
I was excited to be going on another cruise! When we arrived for our flight at Dublin airport we were very glad we had booked Airport Genie! This is a fast track through security and we had no wait at all, I felt bad for the people in the regular line!

After a short flight our driver was waiting for us at Venice Airport and a few minutes later we were pulling up at our ship, MSC Fantasia. We were on the ship in record time and our first impression was how gorgeous it was! The whole ship was well laid out, it was very glamorous with a large selection of bars, a huge theatre, lots of restaurants, plenty of shops, a casino, library with internet access, a kids club, a lovely spa and large gym, a 3d cinema, a formula 1 simulator, 3 swimming pools, one of which was indoor and another adults only, as well as numerous hot tubs and a waterslide.

We had an ocean view cabin, our first time in one and it was perfect. It was the largest cabin we have had, well-appointed and it was lovely to wake up to the sun rising over our new port of call each day.

This was a lovely itinerary with different ports of call every day: Bari, Katakolon, Santorini, Athens, Corfu and Dubrovnik. We were blessed with great weather and we made the most of it, relaxing in all of the lovely outdoor areas dotted around the ship.

We enjoyed wandering around the narrow streets in the old town of Bari, steeped in history, we were pleasantly surprised with the lovely squares, churches and laid back atmosphere of the city.

Katakolon was one of the ports I had been most looking forward to. Olympia, the birth place of the Olympic Games, is the most popular excursion here and we thoroughly enjoyed it. It was fascinating to see the remains of a place whose legacy has had such a lasting effect on our modern world. The ruins of great temples, hotels, a gym and a running track were clear to see.

We awoke the following day to the spectacular sight of Santorini! The towns, precariously perched on top of cliffs, were like nothing I had seen before and I was enchanted. We took the cable car to Fira and this in itself was an adventure! I can see why Santorini is so popular, it is absolutely gorgeous and getting lost in the winding white-washed streets in Fira was a pleasure in itself.

Our next port of call was Athens and who wouldn’t be blown away by The Acropolis and Parthenon, the symbol of Greece and the cradle of Civilisation? It was incredible to be here and we had a fantastic day. Corfu was next on the agenda, we took the ship’s shuttle into the lovely Corfu town where we walked along the lovely promenade and explored the many quaint streets with its gorgeous buildings and friendly locals. Our last day on board dawned bright and sunny. We were in Dubrovnik, what a port! Dubrovnik should be on everyone’s list of places to see. Its whole coastline is simply breath taking and the city itself is one of the nicest places I have ever visited.

I’m so pleased that we decided to cruise with MSC. The ship was great, the staff were very friendly, we enjoyed all of the food and the shows & entertainment were good fun. Kids cruise fee with MSC which will certainly appeal to families.

We were lucky enough to have two Irish couples around our own age at our table for dinner and we had great fun with them. We all made the most of our excellent value pre-booked beverage package, testing out the entire cocktail menu as well as pre and post dinner drinks.

We spent two nights in Venice at the end of the cruise. Last year we had stayed in the centre of Venice, however, hotels are extremely expensive and it can be quite awkward to negotiate all of Venice’s bridges and narrow streets with your luggage. This time I booked The Delfino Hotel, one stop on the train from the centre of Venice, we found this an ideal spot. The hotel was lovely and modern and very reasonably priced and we loved our stay and had a wonderful time in Venice.

Another wonderful cruise! The only thing I know for certain is that it won’t be our last!