Authors Posts by Natalies Nautical Tales

Natalies Nautical Tales

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Ahoy There! Welcome to my blog regarding all things cruise. My name is Natalie and I have been working in the travel industry for 17 years and specialising in the cruise sector for over 9 years now. Not only do I book dream cruises for my clients every day but I love to cruise myself! There is just something about waking up in a different place every day and experiencing new cultures and destinations that appeals to me. Cruise ships are just like floating resorts and each has its own personality, no ships are the same so I enjoy trying different cruise lines and sizes of ship. I will be posting pictures from my various cruising adventures and any news from the industry to keep you up to date with the goings on. There will also be some fantastic special offers coming your way in due course so keep your eyes peeled for these too. Please visit my contact page to get in touch if you would like me to check prices for you on any cruise, I promise to get you a great deal! If you want to share any of your cruising experiences or photos with me, I would love to see them!

Royal Caribbean are making big changes to their private island paradise of Coco Cay in the Bahamas!

The new design for the island will be ready for Autumn 2019 and there are some fantastic enhancements to experience for all ages. The main features are below but take a look at the video to bring it all to life!

You can have a fantastic view over the island, 450 foot up in the air, from the helium balloon!

Relax at Coco Cay Beach Club which will feature the only over-water cabanas in the Bahamas! ( This is where you would find me! )

The island will also have another first, the largest wave pool in the Caribbean! These wave pools are always so much fun!

The water park on the island looks fantastic! The ‘Daredevils Tower’ will have 7 slides, including the fully vertical Screeching Serpent, the 135 foot tall Daredevils Peak ( Which is the tallest water slide in North America! ), the coiling Green Mamba or have a race with a friend on the twin Dueling Demon drop slides or the Manta Raycers.

The island also boasts the Caribbeans largest freshwater pool. If you are looking to relax and spend some quality time with friends or family in one of the coves, or even your own private cabana, this could be the area for you!

 

If you would like to visit Coco Cay next year on your Royal Caribbean cruise, give me a call or drop me an email and I will find an itinerary to suit you!

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Email or call me to discuss your dream cruise: Natalie@cruiseclubuk.com 0161 798 2506

If you are looking to cruise the Polar regions and would like to do this on board a luxurious modern yacht, then look no further!

Crystal Endeavor is due to debut in 2020 and will be the first expedition yacht in the Crystal fleet.

Take a look a the video below to see what you can expect…

Stunning, I am sure you will agree!

The all suite yacht will be the largest, most spacious, expedition yacht in the world and will have the same level of luxurious standards on board that you would expect from Crystal.

Dining on board the yacht will remain true to expectations on other Crystal ships and include fine wines and premium spirits throughout.  Featured on board will be 3 speciality restaurants in addition to the main dining venue, Waterside.

Prego – Traditional Italian fare

Umi Uma – Serving signature sushi and specialities from Master Chef Nobu Matsuhisa

Vintage Room – Wine themed dinners

In the evening the 2 story solarium, located at the back on the ship, will play host to the Asian inspired Silk Bar and Kitchen ( on certain itineraries ). Bistro Cafe will be the go to place on board for freshly brewed teas, coffee and small bites and will also offer breakfast and lunch with full waiter service.

Evening entertainment will take place in Crystal Cove and the elegant Palm Court, which will also host enrichment classes. Other enrichment venues on board will be the Captain’s lounge, the Helicopter lounge and the Library.

The promenade area will be more intimate space on board and the perfect place to enjoy a pre dinner drink with spectacular views!

You will even find on board boutiques and a casino, which is currently the only one on an expedition yacht!

Palm Court

There will be a Spa, Salon and fully equipped fitness centre will be on board, along with the glass-domed roof solarium area.

The expansive ‘Mud Rooms’ will be a unique feature on board which will be an area to prepare for the adventures of the day ahead and then to clean off on your return.

‘Mud room’

Full details of itineraries and dates are yet to be announced so stay tuned for details! I for one am very interested to see what will be on offer!

 

Did you know here at Cruise Club UK we have a Loyalty Bonus Scheme. Book your chosen cabin type and you can receive up to 50 Bonus Points (1 Point = £1) That’s a saving of up to £50 off your next cruise booked with us.  

Email or call me to discuss your dream cruise: Natalie@cruiseclubuk.com 0808 273 6113

 

 

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Cuba is definitely the ‘in’ place to visit at the moment! Since the embargo was lifted by the USA it is the destination that all the Cruise Lines are trying to get on board with ( excuse the pun! ). The latest one to announce they are making more visits to this Caribbean Island, is Carnival Cruise Lines.

The Carnival Sensation, which received a multi million dollar refurbishment just last year, will be based out of Miami in 2019 and will be operating a selection of 5 night itineraries, featuring Cuba.

During her refurbishment the ship has been enhanced with some of Carnival’s most popular on board restaurants and bars. She will now feature Guys Burger Joint, BlueIguana Cantina and The Alchemy Bar. A new childrens club has also been added.

Carnival Sensation

Carnival Sensation will join Carnival Paradise, which will be based out of Tampa, to offer Caribbean cruises in 2019, featuring Cuba. Both ships will also feature Cuba themed entertainment to get guests in to the latino spirit! Expect Salsa Lessons, Havana inspired deck parties and ‘Amor Cubano’ which is a popular theatre production featured on Carnival Vista.

BlueIguana Cantina
BlueIguana Cantina
Guys Burger Joint
Guys Burger Joint

Included in the Carnival Sensation itineraries, on selected dates, will also be visits to sister cruise lines private islands in the Bahamas. Princess Cays, which belongs to sister company Princess Cruises and also Half Moon Cay, which belongs to Holland America.

 

“Our inaugural cruises to Cuba aboard Carnival Paradise from Tampa were met with exceptional guest response and we’re thrilled to expand upon the program with our first Cuba cruises from Miami featuring Havana and some of the most beautiful islands in the Caribbean and The Bahamas,” said Carnival Cruise Line’s president, Christine Duffy. “Cuba is a sought-after destination and we’re delighted to provide our guests with even more opportunities to experience and explore this fascinating island.”

 

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Email or call me to discuss your dream cruise: natalie@cruiseclubuk.com  | Freephone 0808 273 6113

Azamara Club Cruises have announced information on the refit of their new addition to the fleet, Azamara Pursuit.

If you were not already aware, Azamara have acquired the ship that is currently operating as the P&O Adonia. The ship will enter in to wet dock ( this is similar to dry dock, but instead the ship will be in water ) in Spring this year at the Harland and Wolff shipyard in Belfast.

During this time the ship will be fully re fitted to be be nearly identical to her sister ships, Azamara Quest and Azamara Journey. The work is expected to conclude at the end of July, ready for her maiden voyage on 1st August.

The maiden voyage on Azamara Pursuit will see her sail from Southampton on a Norway Intensive itinerary for 12 nights, itinerary below. This will be the first time in many years that Azamara have sailed from Southampton which is a fantastic opportunity for those that prefer to sail from the UK to try out Azamara.

Pursuit Maiden Itin

In a company first, Pursuit will have a christening ceremony, again in Southampton! Their other two ships entered straight in to service once completed so this is a very exciting event for Azamara and is sure to attract a lot of travel media attention.

We have some fantastic deals for the maiden voyage on Pursuit so if you would like to experience it for yourself please give me a call!

 

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Did you know here at Cruise Club UK we have a Loyalty Bonus Scheme. Book your chosen cabin type and you can receive up to 50 Bonus Points (1 Point = £1) That’s a saving of up to £50 off your next cruise booked with us.  

Email or call me to discuss your dream cruise: natalie@cruiseclubuk.com 0161 798 2506

I have just returned from an amazing 4 nights on board Seven Seas Explorer, billed as the ‘Most Luxurious Ship Ever Built’. I can wholeheartedly agree with this statement, I was lost for words walking around this stunning ship!

If you are not familiar with Regent Seven Seas, they are a luxury inclusive cruise line. Included on board are all drinks, gratuities, speciality dining and shore excursions. You really do want for nothing on board, as I learned from my time on board. The staff on board are so personable, getting to know your favourite tipple and genuinely wanting to give you the best experience possible from your cruise. I really can’t recommend this cruise line highly enough and my blog could not possibly cover every aspect of what I loved about Regent!

This was my first time with Regent Seven Seas and my expectations were exceeded in all aspects.  Checking in at Malaga port was a breeze, no queues at all we just showed our passports to security and boarded the ship. Check in is done on the ship itself, usually in the Theatre, with a welcome glass of Champagne, then you are free to go off and explore. Generally speaking suites are normally available later in the afternoon, however if you are in one of the named suites i.e Seven Seas Suite, these are available from 12pm.

We stayed in a Concierge Suite on deck 12 which again following my theme of the cruise, I was blown away by. The marble and stone bathroom featured a double sink, complete with l’Occitane toiletries. We had a large rainfall shower cubicle plus separate bath with shower over the top. The dressing area was fantastic, plenty of both wardrobe and drawer space, which could also be closed off to the rest of the suite by a door. The bed was a European king size, which could be converted to twins if needed, and was extremely comfortable! Our bed faced the balcony which gave a lovely view and was a lovely surprise as this is not always the case, certainly on ships I have been on in the past. There was a sitting area with sofa, chair and table, perfect for room service delivery! In Concierge suites you also receive an Illy coffee machine, I love my morning coffee so this suited me perfectly! Our mini bar was fully stocked with various soft drinks, bottled water and beers and this is re filled daily. Our cabin stewardess came to introduce herself and explained a little on how the room service worked and the various other features of the suite, she also brought us our welcome bottle of Champagne on Ice which was lovely. If you prefer to drink wine or spirits there is also the option to have these delivered to your suite at your leisure, all included, at is standard with Regent Seven Seas.

Explorer - Concierge Explorer - Concierge 2 Explorer - Concierge 4 Explorer - Concierge 8 Explorer - Concierge 9 Explorer - Concierge 3

My first impression on boarding the ship was how modern and chic the reception area was, the centre piece being a stunning crystal chandelier over the grand staircase. The sense of space is clear straight away, I felt like I was in a boutique hotel rather than on a cruise ship. The ship carries 750 guests so for a ship of this size ( 56,000 GRT ) it is perfect and never felt busy with people despite our sailing being virtually full. It was difficult to take everything in at first as everywhere I looked there was a beautiful vase or piece of artwork, from Picasso’s to modern sculptures, a real feast for the eyes! I was just in awe at the attention to detail visible in every area on the ship.

Reception area
Reception area
Main Staircase area
Main Staircase area
Stunning Chandelier - Main Staircase
Stunning Chandelier – Main Staircase

One of my favourite lounges on board was the Observation Lounge right at the front of the ship on deck 11. This has a real art deco feel to it and was the go to place for pre dinner drinks and canapes, featuring live music. In the afternoon this lounge hosted afternoon tea between 4pm and 5pm, again with live music in the form of the on board pianist. I loved the atmosphere in here and of course the tasty cakes, scones and sandwiches were superb!

Art deco design in the Observation Lounge
Art deco design in the Observation Lounge
Observation Lounge
Observation Lounge
Observation Lounge
Observation Lounge
Observation Lounge - Afternoon Tea
Observation Lounge – Afternoon Tea

Dining on board is open seating in the main restaurant in the evening and of course in the speciality restaurants you select your preferred dining time when making your reservation. I should also mention that full in suite dining is also available where you will be served course by course, perfect to celebrate a special occasion.

The food in all restaurants was outstanding, I love Asian style cuisine so Pacific Rim was perfect for me. I had the most amazing Lobster and Seafood Laksa in here! My Husband loves his meat so Prime 7, which is the steakhouse on board, was more suited to his taste. He enjoyed a fillet mignon with Alaskan king crab legs on our evening here, complete with many side dishes to accompany! We both really enjoyed Chartreuse, the French restaurant on board, my starter of Emmental cheese Souffle was beautiful, I didn’t dare try the Escargots, but my main dish of scallops with chorizo was fantastic!

Compass Rose - Main Restaurant
Compass Rose – Main Restaurant
Compass Rose - Main Restaurant
Compass Rose – Main Restaurant
Pacific Rim Restaurant
Pacific Rim Restaurant

Explorer - Pacific Rim

Chartreuse Restaurant
Chartreuse Restaurant

I could go on further about the food but I will leave you to try it for yourself, you will not be disappointed!

In regards to the free shore excursions, I would recommend booking these as soon as they are released. Excursions have limited spaces, as with all cruise lines, so to avoid disappointment it is essential. One thing I was struck by was actually getting off the ship in port. This sounds like a strange thing to mention but I was struck by the ease of this! In Cadiz the gangway was on deck 5, just opposite reception, so we literally just stepped out on to deck and then straight down the gang plank to shore side, Fantastic! I am used to the large ships and having to wait for lifts to take you down to the depths of the ship then having to queue to get off, this is just not the case on Explorer.

The final point to mention, which is very important to us ladies especially, is the dress code on board. The evening is Elegant Casual for most of the time, there are optional formal evenings as well but they are just that, optional. Elegant Casual means different things to each of us, but the main point is that no jeans are allowed after 6pm, with the exception of the last evening where the dress code is more relaxed due to disembarkation the next morning. Ladies wore both dresses and trousers with blouses/tops while the Gents ranged from full suits to trousers and a shirt, some with and some without jackets.

I hope you enjoyed reading my blog and I have really just touched the surface with regards to my time on board. I genuinely fell in love with Regent and Explorer and would go again in a heartbeat. Value for money is outstanding when you consider everything that is included with the level of service you receive, compared to one of the mainstream cruise lines.

If you are considering sailing with Regent Seven Seas and would like any advice on choosing a suite or have any questions please do not hesitate to drop me an email natalie@cruiseclubuk.com or give me a call on 0161 7982506.

 

Prestige logo

 

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Today sees exciting news from Cunard!

This year is the 50th anniversary of the launch if the legendary QE2. What better time to proudly announce that a brand new ship will be arriving in 2022, bringing the total ships in the fleet to 4.

This will be the first time since 1998 that the luxury line will have 4 ships in service at the same time.

The name of the new ship is yet to be announced but exciting new itineraries and special event voyages are expected to feature for the new luxury liner. Cunard are committed to evolving the customer experience on board, having invested over £120 million refurbishing Queen Victoria and Queen Mary 2, so we can expect this to continue for their new ship.

Cunard_New_Ship_-_Solo

Cunard will be revealing details about their new ship during 2018, and up until the ships launch, but for the time being here is what we know with some interesting Cunard statistics:

The ship will be 113,00 GRT ( Gross Registered Tonnage ) and carry 3000 passengers

The ship will be the 249th to fly the Cunard flag

This will be Cunard’s first new ship in 12 years. The last being Queen Elizabeth in 2010.

In a statement from Simon Palenthorpe, Senior Vice President at Cunard;

“We have only recently marked the 50th anniversary of one of Cunard’s much loved ocean liners, the legendary QE2. What better way to celebrate her important role in Cunard’s past than by announcing our commitment to Cunard’s future with the commissioning of a new ship. Cunard offers unrivalled luxury ocean experiences and the new ship firmly underpins our plans to continue our growth across international markets.”

Personally I am really looking forward to hearing all about what the new ship will have to offer and I am intrigued as to the name of the ship! There has to be a royal influence in the name but I guess I will have to wait and see!

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Email or call me to discuss your dream cruise: natalie@cruiseclubuk.com  0161 798 2506

Seabourn have proudly marked a construction milestone for their new ship Seabourn Ovation with a traditional coin and launch ceremony.

The ceremony took place at the Fincantieri shipyard in Italy earlier this month and involved one of Seabourn’s longest serving female shipboard team members, the president of Seabourn, the Fincantieri shipyard director and the Captain who will be in charge of the Ovation when she launches in May 2018.

The time-honored coin and launch ceremony involves 2 commemorative gold coins being welded to the ship’s mast, then the ship’s cord is cut to allow water to flow in to the ships building dock. This is the first time the ship will be ‘floated’ so is an exciting time for both the ship builders and Seabourn themselves. The ship will then be moved to the outfitting dock to receive final construction and will remain there until Seabourn take delivery of the ship in 2018.

The inaugural sailing will depart Venice on the 5th May 2018 for an 11 night cruise to Barcelona. Following this she will spend her maiden season cruising Northern Europe, offering 7 day Baltic/Scandinavia sailings featuring Seabourn’s signature 3 day stay in St. Petersburg, Russia. There will also be 14 day sailings available visiting the Norwegian Fjords and our very own British Isles.

Seabourn Ovation will be 40,350 GRT and will carry just 600 guests, based on double occupancy. The all suite ship, each complete with veranda and large enough to allow al fresco dining, will provide a home from home base for her guests.

Veranda Suite
Veranda Suite
Penthouse Suite and Penthouse Spa Suite
Penthouse Suite and Penthouse Spa Suite
Penthouse Suite and Penthouse Spa Suite
Penthouse Suite and Penthouse Spa Suite

The ship is being fashioned by design icon Adam D. Tihany, so expect contemporary interiors, modern design and innovations in keeping with the elegance of the Seabourn fleet.

The exclusive and extremely popular ‘ The Grill by Thomas Keller’ restaurant will also feature on board, offering updated versions of iconic American Classics. You can expect table side preparation of Caesar salad and Ice cream sundaes, as well as favourites such as lobster thermidore and premium steaks.

The Grill by Thomas Keller
The Grill by Thomas Keller

You can of course expect to receive on board the highly intuitive and personal service which is synonymous to Seabourn.

At present only artists impressions are available of this highly anticipated ship. I am excited to see the finished ship as I am sure she will be stunning and will be a fantastic addition to the Seabourn fleet.

If I can help you plan your next cruise please do not hesitate to drop me an email natalie@cruiseclubuk.com or call me directly on 0161 7982506.

 

Visit our new and exclusive web page, featuring news and information for your forthcoming six star cruise holiday!

http://www.cruiseclubuk.com/Home-Page_Luxury.phtml

What New Customers Get…

  • Dedicated direct phone number to your personal Cruise Consultant
    (UK Based call centre & Cruise Expert)
  • Exclusive offers you can’t find anywhere else
  • An industry leading loyalty scheme called Bonus Points
  • We Include the following on the Majority Of Our Offers
  • Full Return Flights
    • Transfers
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  • Regular personal emails full of special deals
  • Interactive website & Blog full of latest offers, cruise news / blog and reviews.
  • All this and no extra charge! The reason we are a ‘Club’ is thanks to our loyal and regular customers.

Mention the word Club and it’s ‘how much is that going to cost me?’
Here at Prestige Cruise Club once you have booked with us you’re a member, the best part being its FREE we don’t charge a penny & 1st time bookers will automatically be entered into our industry leading Loyalty Scheme Bonus Points. It’s our way of saying thank you (1 point = £1) and a nice saving for you*

 

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If you are not familiar with the Cunard Grills experience and are considering spoiling yourself on your next Cunard cruise, my blog may help you to decide which of the grill suites would suit.

Cunard have 2 levels of Grill suites; Princess Grill and Queens Grill. In general these are both the epitome of the Cunard experience where you can expect attentive service and access to exclusive lounges, terraces and restaurants on board. Only the finest wines and food are served in the Grill restaurants on board, to give you a meal to savour and remember each evening.

SYZ01_queens_grill_dining

To whet your appetite take a look at the sample dinner menus for the Princess Grill and Queens Grill restaurants.

Lets take a look at the amenities you will receive on board, exclusively for Grill guests;

Princess Grill

You will enjoy a priority time slot for embarkation

Butler service

Concierge service

Embarkation welcome with Sparkling wine and chocolates

Daily fresh fruit

Personalised stationary

Atlas

Bath and shower in suite

Pillow concierge menu

Soft terry robes and slippers

24 hour room service including in suite dining from the Princess Grill menu

Open seating between 6.30pm and 9.00pm in the Princess Grill restaurant

Queen Mary 2 – Exclusive access to the Queens Grill lounge

Queen Victoria and Queen Elizabeth – Exclusive access to The Courtyard, The Grills Lounge and The Grills Terrace

ISON_160525_Aspinal-52759e

Queens Grill

You will enjoy a priority time slot for embarkation and disembarkation

Butler service

Concierge service

Embarkation welcome with Champagne and chocolates

Complimentary in suite bar, stocked with 2 bottles of wine or spirits of your choice ( for in suite consumption only ) and soft drinks

Pre-dinner canapes

Daily fresh fruit

Turndown surprise on formal nights

Use of an I-Pad ( in selected suites )

Personalised stationary

Atlas and Books

Bath and shower in suite

Pillow concierge menu

Soft terry robes and slippers

24 hour room service including in suite dining from the Queens Grill menu

Open seating between 6.30pm and 9.00pm in the Queens Grill restaurant

Queen Mary 2 – Exclusive access to the Queens Grill lounge

Queen Victoria and Queen Elizabeth – Exclusive access to The Courtyard, The Grills Lounge and The Grills Terrace

Priority tender service ( in selected suites )

There are a variety of suites on offer in each of the Grill categories but to give you an idea of what you can expect on each ship I have included some pictures below;

Queen Victoria

Princess Suite

QV_PRINCESS_SUITE

Queens Suite

A 5632

Queen Mary 2

Princess Suite

QM2 Princess suite

Queens suite

QM2 Queens suite

Queen Victoria

Princess suite

Queen Vic Princess Suite

Queens suite

Queen Vic Queens suite

As you can see this really is the most luxurious way to cruise with Cunard and if your cruise is to celebrate a special occasion, what could be a better way to spoil yourselves than travelling in absolute luxury in one of the Grill suites.

If I can help you plan your next cruise please do not hesitate to email or call me: natalie@cruiseclubuk.com  0161 798 2506

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The last part of my Constellation blog I have broken in to 2 sections as this is an overview of the destinations I visited.

The itinerary I did covered some different ports I have wanted to see for some time in Croatia, Slovenia and Montenegro so I was keen to go exploring!

Lets start with Venice

I have been to Venice before a few years ago where we had an overnight stay prior to boarding the ship. This time we stayed for 2 nights before boarding as we felt we didn’t get to cover a lot of Venice on our previous whistle stop visit.

I am so pleased we did the 2 nights as due to our outbound flight arriving around 10 am we had a full 2 days and nights to explore. By having this time before the cruise it also meant that on embarkation day we could get to the ship in the morning before the crowds on the flights arrived. We took a public water bus from our nearest stop to the port which was around 30 minutes and inexpensive, around 8 Euros each.

Anyway back to the city itself! If you haven’t been to Venice before it is such a must see place, rich with history, architecture and beautiful canal lined streets to meander around. They say you have not fully experienced Venice until you have got lost which is very easy to do!

St Marks Square and Doge’s Palace are among the most popular sights and get exceptionally busy at peak times. St Marks Square just after sunrise is apparently stunning, very quiet, serene and peaceful. I can’t say I did this myself but my husband did, as he went to watch Constellation sail in.

The best way to see Venice is to just wander around. The front desk at our hotel were very helpful in pointing out some of the best areas, not as well known to tourists, and restaurant recommendations. We walked miles over these couple of days and saw much more of Venice than previously, It really is a stunning and unique city.

Rialto bridge
Rialto bridge
View from Rialto bridge
View from Rialto bridge
Venice
Venice
One of the smaller canals
One of the smaller canals
Unique art work!
Unique art work!

Kotor – Montenegro

This was the port I was most excited about on the itinerary. The old town of Kotor is a UNESCO heritage site and I just had to walk up the steps ( approx. 1350 of them! ) to St John’s Castle to take in the view. What can I say about the climb… well if you have any kind of walking difficulty this is absolutely impossible as the steps are quite worn and slippy in parts making both the ascent and descent quite perilous in places. I saw people walking up in flip flops and even high heels, I have no idea how they managed this, I definitely wouldn’t recommend it!

The climb was the first thing we did after the scenic tender trip to shore, as we quite rightly thought it would be cooler in the morning. There is around a 3 Euros per person entrance fee to climb the steps and you will need plenty of water! The ascent we decided to take our time with and with having to negotiate people coming down, you come down the same way you go up, this was the best plan. We stopped around half way for a break and the view from even this point was stunning, especially of the Old Town of Kotor beneath you. After a brief ‘shall we just go back down’ I managed to persuade hubby to carry on to the top as I was not giving up that easily! When we finally made the top, with jelly legs and quite sweaty, it was well worth the effort. We explored around the ancient Castle and took in the amazing views surrounding us, taking lots of pictures of course, and it really felt like we had achieved something.

After our descent, which took around 50 minutes, we headed in to the Old Town and went for a lovely cold drink and a sit down!

The old town is beautiful and really well preserved, a lot smaller than I imagined, but I had’t realised the town was all in within the fortress walls.

We just walked around the town on our own however I think a walking tour with a guide would be great to find out more about the buildings and who once lived in them. I found myself listening to a few of the guides we came across whilst walking around!

The sail away from Kotor is spectacular! Due to the position of Kotor, the ship has to navigate narrow passages to get back to the sea and it really gives you a sense of how big the ship is. At certain points the ship must honk the horn to warn any ships/boats coming the other way. The echo around the valley is amazing! My pictures don’t really serve it justice but it really is spectacular!

Entrance to the steps of Kotor
Entrance to the steps of Kotor
First Gate on the Kotor steps
First Gate on the Kotor steps
Half way up! View to the top!
Half way up! View to the top!
View looking down, half way!
View looking down, half way!
Hooray! View from the top!
Hooray! View from the top!
Kotor in the distance on sail away
Kotor in the distance on sail away
One of the narrow passages sailing away
One of the narrow passages sailing away
Sailing through the narrow passage, how close to shore!
Sailing through the narrow passage, how close to shore!

Dubrovnik – Croatia

Having visited the old town before we decided to go to a different resort which is around 30 minutes south of Dubrovnik, called Cavtat.  What a stunning place this is! The small resort centre is around the harbour area with a lovely peninsular to walk around which circles Cavtat. There are plenty of cafes, small bars and restaurants lining the harbour front so it is perfect for watching the world go by. The sea is crystal clear and although in the town itself there are no beaches to speak of, there are plenty close by. The pace of life here was very relaxed and I could definitely see myself coming back here on a land based holiday. The resort reminded me very much of a small Greek Island resort, I can highly recommend a trip here for the day as an alternative to Dubrovnik.

Cavtat Harbour
Cavtat Harbour
Cavtat Harbour
Cavtat Harbour
Cavtat Harbour
Cavtat Harbour
Cavtat Harbour
Cavtat Harbour

Please click here to read the final part of my destinations review.

If I can help arrange your next cruise please do not hesitate to get in touch with me on the contact details below.

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Email or call me to discuss your dream cruise: natalie@cruiseclubuk.com 0161 798 2506 or Freephone 0808 2736113

Please read on for the final part of my destination review…..

Split – Croatia

Again, Split I have visited before but I just loved it the first time around so was looking forward to having a wander around the old town with the ancient Diocletian Palace. The sea front reminds me very much of Cannes, with its Palm tree lined wide promenade featuring an abundance of chic bars and restaurants. The Palace area is so interesting and there is a myriad of streets and squares with again lots of restaurants and coffee shops. We sat and had a coffee in one such square which was great to people watch!

Palace walls
Palace walls
Diocletian Palace
Diocletian Palace
Diocletian Palace
Diocletian Palace
Giant monk! Outside the Palace walls
Giant monk! Outside the Palace walls
One of the many picturesque squares in Split
One of the many picturesque squares in Split
Split Promenade
Split Promenade

Zadar – Croatia

I had heard a lot about the ‘Sea Organ’ in Zadar which is located on the relatively new harbour front area. The Sea Organ is a musical piece of architectural art! There are tubes built in to huge marble steps which when the wind and sea waves hit them make a tune. It is really intriguing and very relaxing to sit in this area listening to the waves and music from the organ.

Again, in Zadar we just explored on our own rather than opting for a tour. The area was badly damaged during the second world war so a lot of the buildings in the main city area are very much brutalist architecture. The old city walls still stand and this area is very picturesque and has quite a Venetian feel, architecture wise. There are some of the very old churches and buildings still standing from before the war and I really loved this area.

I was quite surprised with the main ‘modern’ city area as the mix of old and new sits quite well in Zadar. All in all I really enjoyed my visit to this port.

One of the 'Gates' to enter the old town
One of the ‘Gates’ to enter the old town
Harbour view
Harbour view
Old church and ruins
Old church and ruins

Koper – Slovenia

I have not visited Slovenia at all so this was my first experience. I was undecided before the cruise whether or not to book an excursion to Lake Bled or Ljubljana, but in the end as we had not visited Koper before we decided to just do our usual self exploration.

Unfortunately I wish we had taken a tour as Koper was quite underwhelming. The small old town was walkable in around an hour, at the most, and there didn’t seem a huge amount to see. After walking twice around the town, incase we had missed something we had a coffee in a little cafe and made our way back to the ship by lunch time.

I would recommend taking a tour if visiting Koper to avoid any disappointment with Koper itself.

Koper Town square
Koper Town square
The main street to the square
The main street to the square

Koper

We did also visit Naples and Messina, however as we have visited these ports before we enjoyed relaxing on board the ship on these days.

This concludes my review of all things Constellation, I hope you enjoyed reading!

If I can help arrange your next cruise please do not hesitate to get in touch with me on the contact details below.

Follow us on our social media channels for Exclusive Offers – Cruise News – Blogs – Competitions & much more:

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Did you know here at Cruise Club UK we have a Loyalty Bonus Scheme. Book your chosen cabin type and you can receive up to 50 Bonus Points (1 Point = £1) That’s a saving of up to £50 off your next cruise booked with us.  

Email or call me to discuss your dream cruise: natalie@cruiseclubuk.com 0161 798 2506 or Freephone 0808 2736113