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Excursions

When visiting different ports of call on a cruise ship, you can choose to take part in an organised excursion, or make your own way ashore.

The Coral had a good selection of excursions available throughout the cruise. The excursions can be booked in advance, however they are subject to change, so it is better to book them onboard. The booking deadlines are clearly stated in the ship’s daily newsletter and announcements are made when the Excursion Office is open for bookings.

We booked three excursions during our cruise at an approximate total cost of £300 (GBP). Each of our excursions had a combination of two nationalities and a multi-lingual guide. For example: our trip to Aix en Provence included both German and English speaking passengers.

The guides spoke both languages fluently. While efficient, this did limit the free time when we reached our destination. Each part of the walking tour was described in two languages, which was time-consuming. This left us with little time to explore the area ourselves. The tours focused on the ancient history, culture and architecture of the destination.

Choosing your excursions

When you book your cruise, it’s a good idea to check your ports of call online. Google Earth is an amazing resource which lets you explore your destination – virtually – without leaving home.

We used Google Earth to make a preliminary decision about the excursions we might choose. We investigated each port and used the online resource to ‘look round the area’. This helped us see what was in the immediate area and decide if there was enough of interest to warrant us going ashore ourselves.

If you are uncertain, the excursion and Purser’s staff will be pleased to help and advise you. We took advice on the Messina excursions from Alex and Anna Maria at the Purser’s office onboard MV Coral – and it was excellent.

Excursion costs

If you are working to a budget on your cruise, remember prices are in Euros onboard the Coral. The price you pay in Sterling will depend on the exchange rate at the time your credit card is charged.

The excursion costs vary, depending on their length and what is included. For example: our trip to Taormina included the admission fee to the Greek Theatre and our Athens excursion included refreshments at a café close to the Acropolis. The excursion prices were generally between €50 and €60 per person.

Excursion Coaches

All coaches were air-conditioned

All coaches were air-conditioned

The coaches booked by MV Coral were all modern, fully air conditioned and comfortable.

The Excursion Guides

The excursion guides used by the MV Coral were well informed, knew their subject and local history, and were happy to answer questions. Their language skills and command of English was first class, which made for a good tour experience.