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12 Night Western Mediterranean Cruise from Barcelona

12 Night Western Mediterranean Cruise from Barcelona

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Jewel of the Seas
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Itinerary

  • Day 1
    Barcelona
  • Day 2
    Cannes
  • Day 3
    La Spezia (Cinque Terre)
  • Day 4
    Rome (Civitavecchia)
  • Day 5
    Taormina (Messina)
  • Day 6
    Cruising
  • Day 7
    Kusadasi
  • Day 8
    Mykonos
  • Day 9
    Santorini
  • Day 10
    Athens (Piraeus)
  • Day 11
    Cruising
  • Day 12
    Cruising
  • Day 13
    Barcelona

Jewel of the Seas

Jewel of the Seas - Royal Caribbean International

Pros

Few gimmicks, great service, rarely raucous

Cons

Costly extras, unimaginative entertainment

Bottom line

Uncomplicated classic cruising with all the traditional trimmings


Cruise Reviews

Sail Date: May 2019
Although we'd been looking to sail on Holland America after a good experience with our last cruise, we chose this cruise with Royal Caribbean because the itinerary was exactly what we were looking for: ports in Italy and Greece. ... Read More
Although we'd been looking to sail on Holland America after a good experience with our last cruise, we chose this cruise with Royal Caribbean because the itinerary was exactly what we were looking for: ports in Italy and Greece. We bookended our trip with several nights in Rome, staying at an outstanding, hidden gem of a boutique hotel, The Inn at the Roman Forum. Our hotel secured transport for us from the hotel to the port in Civitavecchia. We booked a Grand Suite on the ship, so had priority boarding. Both embarkation and disembarkation were a breeze, handled very efficiently, as was the security muster. There was a broader age range of passengers on this cruise than on our last cruise, which we enjoyed. Our suite, 1048, was very spacious and comfortable. The bed was comfortable, but the pillows weren't. They provided 6 (!) king size pillows, but they were all the same: too thick and firm. The food was acceptable, but nothing special. Most of it fell under my brother-in-law's description of cruise ship food: "abundantly adequate." Our steak at Chops Grill was quite good, though. Entertainment was uneven. They had one good headliner from the UK who put on a very good performance, singing Frank Sinatra songs and the like, and he actually got a standing ovation! (Think people were just grateful for a good quality entertainer!) The highlights of the cruise were the quality of the service and the shore excursions. All across the board, the crew was friendly, helpful, and eager to be of service. Rosen, our cabin steward, always greeted us cheerfully and was very efficient and helpful. Zo and Meng, our waiters in the Main Dining Room, were attentive, quick and efficient, and made sure we had whatever we needed. Aline, our concierge, answered our questions patiently, and was a great resource. We were impressed with all our shore excursions, which were very efficiently and effectively organized. One stood out: the Athens and Cape Sounion with Lunch tour. It was long but thorough, our guide was extremely knowledgeable and professional, we had ample free time, and saw the Parthenon before the crowds arrived. A nice surprise: the buffet lunch at the Intercontinental was exceptional! We would highly recommend this excursion. While we were disappointed at not getting to see Santorini due to weather issues, overall we were pleased with the cruise and would consider sailing with Royal Caribbean again in the future if there's an itinerary that looks appealing. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
Jewel of the Seas - Royal Caribbean What a wonderful ship she is. We had a great mid ship balcony cabin # 9616. A cabin steward that was perfect. Food was great entertainment was good. We went to 2 shows and they were better than expected. ... Read More
Jewel of the Seas - Royal Caribbean What a wonderful ship she is. We had a great mid ship balcony cabin # 9616. A cabin steward that was perfect. Food was great entertainment was good. We went to 2 shows and they were better than expected. They had music on the ship strings in the main area everyday so you could just listen and relax before and after dinner. We enjoyed this. There was also a band and singer some times. Piano bar and more. We did not go to any bars because we were too tired every night after the islands each day. She is a smaller ship with only a few shops. We only ate in the main dining room or Windjammer. We made an our time reservation for two 3 months ahead of time and when we got there we were at a table for 8 but they fixed it that day and everything was great. Our waiters were the best and we got to know each other quickly. - Wednesday April 24th – This was a day of rest on the ship. We ate and napped and ate again. There was a chocolate night in the windjammer one night so ask or you will miss it. They have wonderful tasty meals and great desserts. One night in the dining room they serve an individual size cake for the 50th anniversary of the cruise line so don’t miss that either. Very good. Public areas were full but not crazy busy ever. Elevators were prompt for the most part. Leaving the ship never seemed too crowded either. - Thursday April 25th- The Island of Crete was one of our favorites. We docked at Chania Souda. It was like old world with technology. Felt safe here. We hired a driver to take us out for the day about 5 hours. Lefteris Nikiforakis is the owner and was our Taxi driver and he was amazing. We went to see many things and experience things on this beautiful island. There were mountains here in which there was still snow visable on the top. Many flowers blooming here. Just beautiful. The things we went to see include Market Building at the Venetian Port, Lighthouse & Turkish Mask, Apera which is a 3500 Yr old Minoan town euro 2.5 to get in, drove through the Country side: Stilos, Neo, Choria Armeni, Kalives, Vamos. We tasted the local foods and drink like yogurt, honey olive oils and more. Crete was my favorite island. - Friday April 26th - Mykonos was our next stop and a nice port to walk around and see the sights, had lunch and people watch. Felt very safe here. We walked to find the windmills and chose to eat at a water front café. We did a tour from the ship for half the day to Delos which was incredible. The tour group was a large size as most of them are but if you stay close to the tour guide you will see and hear everything. We did have a head set which helped too. This is a 2500 BC Sanctuary with an Amphitheater, was the birth place of mythological Apollo and his sister and so much more. Take a guided tour here to learn all the stories. The spring time was beautiful weather a flowers blooming everywhere we went. Saturday April 27th – Rhodes was our next island. We hired a private tour for here and had a great experience. Nicholas was our driver/tour guide. Rhodesprivatetours.com He picked us up promptly from the pickup area dockside outside the ship in a Mercedes with our name on a card and drove us to many wonderful places. He explained everything and could answer any questions we had. You pay at the end of the tour. We started at 8:00 AM. We saw the most important monuments of the Medieval City (World Heritage Site) for pictures. He dropped us off here at the end of the tour for shopping and sightseeing of the village. Short walk to the ship from here. The drive continued out of the Medieval City to the “New Town” The Historical Buildings and the Old Harbor, where according to the tradition, the Colossus of Rhodes once stood - One of the seven wonders of the ancient world. (Stop Visit Pictures). The North point of the Island where the Mediterranean and the Aegean Sea meet (Stop Pictures) . Monte Smith - Acropolis of Rhodes, Panoramic view of the City, also the Temple of Apollo, the Greek Stadium, and the Ancient Theater - with the car, no climb (Stop Visit Pictures). The drive continues south-east 50 kilometers / 32 miles to Lindos . On the way you visit the Anthony Quinn Bay – Which takes its name from the famous Hollywood actor, who owns a large property in this area. Since filming the Guns of Navarone in Rhodes Island - scenic (Stop Visit Pictures) and walked down to the waters edge. On the way to Lindos, we stopped at a pottery workshop where the traditional pottery of Rhodes is made. You can see the wonderful pieces of art, and watch the potter working at his wheel. You can even learn the mystery of the Pythagorean cup. We bought two. One mile before Lindos our Tour/Driver parked the car at a vantage point for a panoramic picture of the Acropolis, the village, and the port of Lindos (Stop Pictures). Then he drives us down to the Saint Paul's bay, incredible wild beauty - "Guns of Navarone" Movie (Stop Visit Pictures) He drives you to the main square of Lindos village, so you can: walk the alleys of Lindos which cost 12 euros and climb up the Acropolis or ride the donkeys which we did not (Stop Visit Pictures) Tourist-buses don’t drive down to the main square. /Driver will meet you at the main square of Lindos for the return trip. On the way back the last 14km / 8 miles he drives through the coast road of Faliraki marvelous beach and Kallithea Spa. Back to Rhodes Old City for independent browsing, or to the ship. The Medieval City (Old City) is a 10 min walk from the cruise port. You could extend the day and go out to lunch. We should have done this and enjoyed a local lunch with our guide. This was an amazing tour and will go back to this beautiful island someday. Our tour guide was the best. Of course we had some gelato too. - Sunday April 28th – Santorini had the picture perfect views of white and blue buildings and a beautiful harbor. We did a ship tour from here because it was Greek Easter and many things were closed. The tour was called “Island of Santorini and Oil Village tour” It took us from Oia to a Local winery to taste wine with a beautiful view of the Sea, to Fira for free time where we had a quick lunch and bought some souvenirs & took pictures. Had some gelato. Have some change if you want to use a bathroom here , then back to Athinios port where there was nothing but the boats to take you back to the ship. There were other tenders that went to Fira where you can take the donkeys up or ride the cable car. This would have been fun but we didn’t know about it. Monday April 29th – Athens. We used Michael's Amazing Tours and had an amazing 8 hour tour. The history here is incredible and not to be missed. Our driver Sotos had all the tickets we needed ahead of time so we just entered each site without much of a wait. We went to the Acropolis museum, The Acropolis , Temple of Zeus, site of the Olympic stadium, changing of the guard , Ancient agora and many more places. We were at each place before the tour groups and had a day with not many lines. We had a traditional Greek meal at a local restaurant. Food was great and the gelato. Our driver Sotos even stopped so I could pick up a few souvenirs before we got back on the ship. Michael the owner met up with us twice that day which was a nice surprise. They took great care of us on this day. Sotos was knowledgeable and informed us about all the sights but he couldn’t accompany us through them. This was the best day. Tuesday April 30th – Was a cruising day and we just relaxed and ate. Wednesday May 1st - We spent the day in Naples and did a self-guided tour. We walked past the Castel Nuovo and Our first stop was for Pastry Sfogliatella at the grand Café Gambrinus is 20 minute walk from ship. We followed our phone GPS during this day and had a few problems but figured it out. We walked to the train station to go up the mountain to where we walked to our destinations. They were right next to each other. First we walked to Castel Sant’ Elmo which is a medieval Fortress. The entrance was not well marked. The ticket widow is on the right but the entrance is to the left. Beautiful views of Naples from here as you walk up into this old castle. Then we walked to the right leaving the Castle and went to see Museo e la Certosa di San Martino. This was formally a monastery and now a museum. Has a beautiful church and many rooms to walk through. Then we walked back down to town and found a Pizza place. We then had gelato. This was a holiday and many places were closed but many were open too. If this was our first time in Naples we would have gone to Pompeii but we have been there before. – Thursday May 2nd – We are back in Rome after our 9 day cruise and prearranged a driver through CivitavecchiaPort.org to drive us to the hotel with pick up at 8AM. We used the same service to take us from our hotel to the airport. He was cautious and profession Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
This cruise began in Rome and went to various Greek Islands, then back to Italy at Naples and then concluded at Rome. It was nine days, two of which were sea days. We booked excursions at each port and prior to the cruise, we spent a week ... Read More
This cruise began in Rome and went to various Greek Islands, then back to Italy at Naples and then concluded at Rome. It was nine days, two of which were sea days. We booked excursions at each port and prior to the cruise, we spent a week in Rome. Greece was in ruins. Well, actually, there were a lot of other things, too. We thought the best two ports were Crete and Rhodes from a history standpoint and really enjoyed those. Santorini was also great. Athens is just another big city with a few interesting thing, but it is still very important historically and was worth the trip. Accessibility was an issue at times. Walking was, at times, rigorous so be careful of the excursions you book. The ship was clean and well maintained as was our cabin. We did, however, pay an additional amount to have a balcony cabin on Deck 9 on the very stern of the ship. Every morning, it was covered with soot from the engines, but the steward wiped it down on his clean-up of the cabin. It wasn't really a problem, just something to be aware of if you book those cabins in back. They were worth it for the view and additional balcony space, though. Food in the main dining room was disappointing. It seems that it has lost a lot of quality and it is not much different from the Windjammer. The advantage to the dining room though, is that you get table service and the very nature of the dining experience limits quantity. We had no beef that was done properly. We would have gone to Chops, but frankly, if they can't get prime rib right in the main dining room, they probably won't when you pay an additional 40 bucks for it. This is the first cruise we've taken (out of about a total of 10) where most of our meals were at the buffet, solely due to the lack of quality in the dining room. Overall, Jewel of the Seas is a good ship and we'd do this same cruise again and we recommend it to others, just be wary of the food quality and all of the walking on cobblestones. Read Less
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