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Naples, be warned

Discussion in 'Europe' started by oldsilverfox, Apr 4, 2004.

  1. oldsilverfox

    oldsilverfox Guest

    ILast spring, whilst docked in Naples, we decided to go on our own on a day trip to Sorrento, using one of the fast ferries which dock alongside the Cruise terminal. In spite of thoroughly checking the time table and ticket office to confirm that there was a return trip which would get us back to the ship in time, when we waited at the scheduled pier at the time appointed it eventually became obvious that this boat had been cancelled without notice. There followed a hair raising, 100$ taxi ride around the perimeter of the Bay of Naples by a manic itaian driver, to arrive only just before the cruise ship sailed. About a fortnight later, a colleague was on an organised trip to the Isle of Capri which was also left in the lurch and the cruise director had to organise a replacement vessel to get 42 guests back on board.
    The moral is, do not trust Italian travel timetables if you wish to go ashore independently and rejoin your ship in time.
  2. Mike Andrews

    Mike Andrews Guest

    Having been to Naples on several occasions,I would strongly recommend that you hire an experienced private driver who specialises in Cruise Shore Excursions to ensure that you get to see everything you want to see (Pompei,Positano,Amalfi Drive etc..)
    We have used Salvatore of DriveAmalfi (driveamalfi@hotmail.com) and never had a problem getting back to the ship on time. Whilst I enjoyed Capri (it was overflowing on both occasions I have visited), I prefer to visit the towns on the Amalfi Coast such as Positano & Ravello.
  3. wwinfl91

    wwinfl91 Guest

    Since you made it back to your ship on time and avoided having to pay for transportation to the next port, I would think you would need to thank and heavily tip the "manic itaian taxi driver" who got you there in one piece. I have seen several tales on other cruise and travel boards about the "horrors" of missing your ship and having to pay your own way to the next port.

    Anytime you elect to do self directed tours off a ship there is the risk that things won't go as you expect. Had you checked the Cruise Critic European ports of call board you would have found several posts about the unrelibility of the ferry service from Capri and the Amalfi coast back and forth to Naples. Any ferry service whether it be in Italy, the USA or in the Phillipines is dependent on the weather and the dependability of the ferries. Planning a shore excursion and depending on ferries for your transportation may not have been the best choice.

    But hopefully others will read your story and not make the same mistake. But to characterize the taxi driver who was trying to get you back in time and who I'm sure was being urged by you to do that at all costs as a "manic Italian driver" just doesn't seem fair or appropriate.

    As I said before I would be thanking him for saving me a lot more than $100 in transportation costs to the next port.

    The above consists of my opinion on this post and does not reflect any official position of anyone else.
  4. cfurry

    cfurry Guest

    Thanks for the tip, oldsilverfox, and for the other posts reinforcing your warning about using just any independent tour operator in Italty. Having recently enjoyed a documentary on Herculeum, my wife and I have been mulling over the idea of a European/Med cruise. Unfortunately, as with so many ports of call, you only get so much time and it's hard to see everything you want. And no matter where you are, it follows that the farther from the ship you stray, the greater the risk that you may not make it back in time.

    We had this happen in Cozumel , but fortunately we were on a ship-sponsored excursion so the ship waited for us. Becuase it happened on our first cruise, we were a little freaked out.

    As for that manic cab ride around the Bay of Naples, I suspect that's SOP for Italian cabbies. We were in Rome years ago and hired a driver for a city tour, and I'm still shocked that I'm around to recall it. We had more near death experiences in that couple of hours than all my other years of living combined. But it sure makes for great memories, yes?
  5. oldsilverfox

    oldsilverfox Guest

    I'm truly sorry wwinf191 if you are offended by the term "manic italian taxi driver". I guess like many other things in life, we all have different takes on other nationals behaviour. It is just that when I am in a car which is on the wrong side of the road, overtaking several cars, on a blind bend, in a two lane tunnel, well it is the kind of experience which tends to leave a lasting impression.
  6. wwinfl91

    wwinfl91 Guest

    Sounds just like drivers in Texas, New Orleans and here in Florida actually let alone some of the drivers I have seen on various islands in the Caribbean and I won't even get started on drivers in Mexico.

    No I guess what bothered me was that it was the taxi driver who got you back to the ship before it sailed and I have to believe that you and the other passengers had encouraged him to get you there as fast as possible. If you didn't then I apoligize for my comments.

    Have a good next cruise.

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