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Cruising the Mediterranean on the Celebrity Equinox

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by Sandra Lawson (subscribe)
To paraphrase Dorothy: 'There is no place like London.' I hope I can convince you of that here. Also check out my blog at damselwithadulcimer.wordpress.com and my theatre reviews at www.playstosee.com
Published September 27th 2012
You don't have to be a Celebrity on a Celebrity Cruise
The cruise market appears to be growing year on year, and the major companies continue to launch new ships to service the demand. I have now become addicted to the idea of allowing the world to come to me as I arrive in a different port almost every day. The cruise companies have a wide choice of shore excursions, but we prefer to do our own thing and explore at our leisure. You don't have to sightsee, you could just find the nearest beach and chill.

Modern cruise ships are the equivalent of floating small villages: there are numerous restaurants and bars as well as a theatre for nightly entertainment. Musical performances are also offered in many of the bars as well as in the main ship's area. Gamblers can place their bets on the gaming tables, or just feed the slot machines, and shoppers can satisfy their quest for retail therapy whilst on board. In addition, you will also be able to join in with regular quizzes and bingo sessions, bid at auctions, attend lectures and watch film shows. Some Celebrity ships also organise special socialising sessions for singles and gays. Let's also not forget the indoor and outdoor swimming pools, hot tubs, spa and beauty facilities. Of course, you could spend every day on board sip and not disembark for ports of call, at least that way you would return from a lazy and relaxing holiday.
Celebrity Equinox Swimming Pool
Celebrity Equinox Swimming Pool


I've just returned from a ten-night Mediterranean cruise on the Celebrity Equinox and didn't want to leave the ship at the end. We sailed out of Rome's port of Civitavecchia, stopping at Messina in Sicily for the resort of Taormina

Taormina
Taormina


Athens, its Greek islands of Rhodes, where even the cats are friendly

Rhodian Tabby Cat
Rhodian Tabby Cat


Mykonos

Mykonos Harbour
Mykonos Harbour


and Santorini

Celebrity Equinox Docked off the Island of Santorini
Celebrity Equinox Docked off the Island of Santorini


Kusadasi in Turkey, where you can buy the most perfect fake goods,

Kusadasi Genuine Fakes
Kusadasi Genuine Fakes


before heading back through the Straits of Messina to Naples

Sailing out of Naples Harbour at Dusk
Sailing out of Naples Harbour at Dusk


and disembarkation in Civitavecchia. Upon returning to the ship after a hot and tiring day ashore, the hotel crew always greet the passengers like old friends and offer iced towels and chilled drinks.

On board the cabins are well-furnished and the cabin attendants are extremely attentive; your comfort is their priority. The restaurant staff are also concerned to make your dining experience as perfect as possible and glasses are replenished with iced water as if by magic. On board service is friendly and cordial at all times; nobody is subservient but the crew are still respectful. Our only complaint with Celebrity is that the wine is heavily overpriced, so we don't drink on board, not even with the benefit of a drinks package.

Of course, the food on a cruise is always abundant. You start with breakfast, either restaurant or room service, or buffet if you get up a little later; restaurant or buffet lunch if you're on board; afternoon tea; early evening Sushi; a four-course dinner and you can still pick from food at the buffet until midnight. You can also dine in one of the speciality restaurants for an extra cover charge, or enjoy ice cream, bistro snacks and burgers and hot dogs at various times during the day. I guarantee that you will never return from a cruise hungry. I'm sure they have special wardrobes that shrink your clothes.

Brunch on the Last Sea Day
Brunch on the Last Sea Day
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Why? To pamper yourself on board ship and take in a host of different places
When: Whenever you want
Where: Wherever the ship sails
Cost: Costs vary depending on the cruise line and the category of cabin, but there are deals to be had
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