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m*u*g*

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  1. This answer is based on the title of the post. We pick the location, say Carribean or Alaska, then pick the ship we want. We do this because if we really want to go on a particular ship like Ovation and she's in Australia, we're out of luck. We usually go with the newest one available or a ship we haven't been on before. If none of the ships are to our taste, we wait or look at other locations. The exact route doesn't matter that much, however, if one of the stops is one we really don't like, we pass and keep looking. Dates play a role in this, but we are usually flexible. All that being said, if you don't care for the RCI locations, check out the Oasis class ships and pick the one with the most sea days. Yes there 6,000 passengers, but I never really feel cramped since there's so much to do. These ships are often the destination. It's my favorite class of ship by far.
  2. Allure June 2012. Son's high school graduation trip. Also took my sister and her daughters. They had recently lost their father to a lifelong battle with illness and this trip was a good release for them. Probably the most fun they ever had and it was their first cruise ever. One of the daughters, far left, is really into photography, so I bought her the unlimited photo package. She had a blast just posing for photos and seeing what she could come up with. They must have ended up with over 300 photos and became good friends with one of the photographers. She even posed with him in one of the photo ops outside the ship at one of the ports. She also ended up on the ship video doing Karaoke. I have more photos on my laptop and can post some better ones later. My wife and I are booked on the 50th birthday cruise on Nov. 2 on Symphony. Can't wait. Point your toes.... Checking in. This IS my excited face. Sorry. It really is. Son and Niece. He was headed to NYU as you can see. Now living in Denver CO.
  3. Our experience is below. And this was our preference. Everyone has their own mode of travel and that's OK. Tour group, on your own, whatever, it's all good. Just sharing ours. In 2015, we hired a driver for the day (through Rome in Limo I believe). Was costly ($500 Eu + tip I recall), but we did A LOT. We didn't mind feeling like we were on a ticking clock since we had a schedule and wanted to see multiple things. Prepay for all tickets in advance (regardless of how you do it) and you will walk right in like at the Colloseum and Vatican. We stopped at the Colloseum first-my Must Do. Did a self guided tour for about an hour and headed back to meet the driver. We also paid for the Vactican private tour guide (another $125 Eu). They will guide you through the most important things to see and provided a lot info in a short time. The driver stopped us at a nice restaurant to eat lunch on our own and waited for us. It was great and authentic. Local knowledge is key here. We also saw the Spanish steps, the Parthenon, Chariot Race grounds, and much more. Would have never gotten to all that on our own via a cruise stop. Never. Just my 2cents. I may never be back and wanted to see as much as possible, so it was well worth it. Enjoy.
  4. Never been there, but this is our plan ($0) when we go in Nov as well.
  5. Yep, this is what we do. We had some fellow cruisers who racked up over 200 photos on one cruise, but they spent a lot of time doing this. They enjoyed it though. We usually end up with 100 or so, and it doesn't take that much time.
  6. I like both to be great if I'm spending that kind of money, which I am. I chose Ovation. I think the itinerary is great. Skagway, Juneau, Galcier Bay, Victoria BC. Plus I get to spend a couple days in Seattle. It's a win for me.
  7. I'm taking Ovation next year. She's going to Skagway, Juneau and Glacier Bay (itinerary change).
  8. Just go to the Windjammer on a Royal ship and you will see rude behavior almost instantly. It's as if people have never seen food before. This is why I avoid it now. You couldn't pay me to go there on embarkation day.
  9. Great, now a fight breaks out...again. Enough already. (I just came here for information)
  10. Just booked this cruise for our 30th Anniv. First time in Alaska.
  11. According to the plans: 6118-6158, 6518-6558 Front of ship
  12. Ovation 6682 is over the smoking lounge. There's a youtube video that shows it. Based on my preferences, I would avoid all rooms on deck 6, but there are some listed on the deck plans as not being obstructed. One's without the little square box symbol.
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