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Guest trip report: Costa’s Costa Victoria

SmarterTravel

I would have to live onboard a cruise ship to cover every ship of every cruise line out there. Since I prefer to live on dry land, I’m enlisting you, SmarterTravel.com’s readers, to help me out with guest trip reports. My first guest correspondents are Eric and Janis Korn from Holliston, Massachusetts, who recently sailed on Costa’s Costa Victoria.

If you’d like to tell your fellow cyber-sailors about a recent cruise experience, please answer the questions in the format below and email them to me at cruise@smartertravel.com.

Your name and hometown

Eric and Janis Korn from Holliston, Massachusetts

Name of cruise line and ship

Costa’s Costa Victoria

Itinerary (destination and length)

We sailed a seven-night Greek islands itinerary, starting in Venice and cruising to Bari, Italy; Olympia, Santorini, Mykonos, and Rhodes, Greece; and Dubrovnik, Croatia.

Travel dates

October 9 through 16, 2006

What did you like most about the onboard experience and why?

The staff and crew were multilingual and multinational, despite the fact that the cruise is really Italian, French, and Spanish oriented. They worked hard at keeping us involved and offered travel orientations especially for English speakers. The staff was very friendly.

What did you like least? Why?

The bathrooms worked on a sporadic basis, despite obvious maintenance efforts to improve them. Meals were adequate but not great.

How would you rate your cabin?

Except for the bathroom issue, our cabin with a porthole was fine. You don’t hang out in the room much. The bed was really comfortable and there was enough closet space, which did not keep us from misplacing our meager possessions.

How would you rate the food?

It was average and plentiful, but not great. We would have liked a Greek meal choice onboard. The only time we had Greek food was our evening in Mykonos.

What was your favorite port or shore excursion and why?

Rhodes was the best for us. We enjoyed the castle with its medieval character. We spent a full day there, which allowed us to see ancient Rhodes and the excavated site on another part of the island, so as to give us a better feel for the island.

What was your least favorite onshore experience? Why?

We had really looked forward to seeing Santorini, but there was an incredible deluge there (“only 30 days of rain per year”). This is not a fault of the cruise, but it was disappointing. And our tour guide abandoned us during the trip to take care of her car. Really. We had very high expectations of Santorini. Our other complaint is one related to many cruises in that we had very limited time in each port, only one evening outing in Mykonos, and had to plan carefully to take advantage of each stop. No second chances.

Would you sail with this cruise line again?

Probably not. We thought our experience with Royal Caribbean years ago was much better.

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