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MSC Mediterranean Cruise Excursions

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Hello and thank you for helping me out. We are taking a Cruise out of Civitavecchia on December 29th 2019 Looking for any info on the Excursions in Palermo, Valletta, Malta, Barcelona, Spain, and Genoa. 

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8 hours ago, Findo said:

Hello and thank you for helping me out. We are taking a Cruise out of Civitavecchia on December 29th 2019 Looking for any info on the Excursions in Palermo, Valletta, Malta, Barcelona, Spain, and Genoa. 

 

Have you looked at the excursion lists on the MSC website? If you aren't planning on doing the official ship excursions, then the 'ports of call'  forums on this website might be of some help. :classic_smile:

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I have a detailed review in the member review section (November 2018) aboard the Meraviglia with information about each port. We were traveling with small children so I skipped the ship organized excursions and planned our own activities. Maybe not the most comprehensive, but once again I had to keep things kid friendly. 

 

- Palermo: We did the Hop On - Hop Off sightseeing Bus around Palermo. You board the bust a block from the pier. There are two routes (you can do both). You’re given headphones and you can listen to commentary in your own language. Easy way to see the highlights, including the Cathedral and Teatro Massimo.

 

- Valletta: We took the ferry to the Three Cities. The dock is about a 10-15 minute walk from the cruise port and it departs every 30 minutes. Once on the other side, we booked a tour of the three cities with Rolling Geeks. These are self guided golf carts with audio commentary. A great, fun way to explore the area. 

 

- Barcelona: I pre booked admission to La Sagrada Familia and to Camp Nou, home of the FC Barcelona. We just took a taxi to La Sagrada Familia, then had a light lunch at a cafe nearby. Then we took another taxi to Camp Nou. We were then planning on going to Las Ramblas, but we had to cut the afternoon short because we lost one of our cruise cards and wanted to give ourselves plenty of time to rectify the issue (turned out to be a non-issue and I wish we would’ve stayed out longer). 

 

- Marseille: We took the free shuttle from the port area to the town center. Not a great idea. The shuttle is indeed free, but you do need to walk a good 20-30

minutes to the bus stop. With 3 ships in port, the bus stop was very crowded and we had to wait close to 40 minutes. Add rain and cold temperatures and it made for a miserable start to our day. But once we got to the town center, we had a great time. We walked to the Cathedral for photos. Then walked to Vieux Port and explored. We planned on picking a waterfront cafe and enjoying lunch but because of the rain we had to sit inside. After that we returned to the ship via taxi.

 

Genoa: We purchased tickets to visit the Genoa Aquarium. Even though it’s located within a 15-20 minute walk, we took a taxi. The aquarium is older but very comprehensive. We enjoyed great views of the waterfront from there. After that we returned to the ship early in order to pack and rest in preparation for our debarkation the next day.

 

I researched all of the activities mentioned and I pre purchased tickets for all of them online in advance. 

 

Have a great time planning!

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Thank you for all your help and for giving me some homework 

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WE recently sailed our first Mediterranean cruise with MSC in December. We are experienced cruisers and basically never book a cruise excursion, usually preferring to either do things on our own, or book with a private tour company that people recommend here or on trip Advisor. 

 

We did look at what MSC had to offer, but felt their prices were ridiculously high so we opted for doing our own thing. As some one already posted, your best bet is to go to the European forums and then to the country you are visiting, There is such a wealth of info there and we used much of it to help make our port days a success. 

 

So, depending on what your interests are, we also docked in Valletta. We wanted to get to Mdina, so we opted for the HoHo bus. There are 2 routes, a Northern and a Southern. If you go to their web site, you can see where each route goes. We chose the Northern route which had a stop in Mdina. We were very happy with our day there and the ride was about 2 hours on the bus and we stayed in Mdina about 3 hours. Next time we go back, we will do the Southern route. 

Ship docks right in the city.

 

Genoa was our favorite port on our cruise. We opted to just sty in this city and were happy we did. For us, we simply loved the old part of the city, with it's narrow, winding streets, upper part, lower part. We wandered about for hours, stopping for food, shopping and just people watching. We rode the funicular to the top of the city for some amazing views. I know many people head out of town, but it was our first time here and we wanted to see this city. We were very happy we chose to stay local. Ship docks right in the city. 

 

Since we boarded in Barcelona, we had a pre cruise stay and a post cruise sty, so we didn't do any excursions, but tour companies like Spain Day Tours are excellent and do a great job showing you this city. We especially liked Las Rambles area, just teeming with activity. Tour companies like Spain Day Tours will pick you up at the terminal. or else you need some transportation to get you around. 

 

I agree with the other poster about Marseilles. There is a free shuttle that takes you to the city, but it drops you off here, and to get to the 'main part' it is an addition mile walk. Might be better off using the ships shuttle and pay the price. 

 

Cheers

Len

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On 1/15/2019 at 2:43 PM, Findo said:

Hello and thank you for helping me out. We are taking a Cruise out of Civitavecchia on December 29th 2019 Looking for any info on the Excursions in Palermo, Valletta, Malta, Barcelona, Spain, and Genoa


If you do a google search on 'portname cruise excursions' (e.g., Genoa cruise excursions)  you will get more excursions to choose from, for that port, than you can shake a stick at.

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We hit most of those on our recent Magnifica cruise. We did our own thing in all three. 

 

Valletta- We just walked around town. We saw the battery and the cannon firing at noon. Was a nice relaxing day. Had a coffee in a coffee and got lost on the cute streets. 

 

Barcelona- We took the port shuttle (not the MSC one that was 3x as much) to the city center. We took the metro to Sagrada Familia. I pre-booked tickets for Sagrada Familia and to go up in the facade so we did that and looked around the area. We then headed back to the ship and walked Las Ramblas. 

 

Genoa- This was towards the end of our cruise and I just took the kids to the aquarium. There's some nice day trips to Portofino though which I'm hoping to do next time. 

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