Shore Excursions - Recommendations?



Does anyone have any reviews of Mediterranean Shore Excursions? We're sailing on Brilliance of the Seas in September from Barcelona - visiting Florence, Naples, Rome, Venice, Corfu and Dubrovnik. Any recommendations as there are several options for each port and we want to make the best choice.


My family of seven had a wonderful day enjoying the Amalfi Coast and Pompeii back in October.. Sorrento Limo was the perfect choice as we had no experience at all in the area. Our english speaking driver (Gennaro( knew all the tricks including where to stop for lunch and shopping.. I highly recommend Sorrento Limo!
Their web-site is



My wife and I did a Med cruise on the Golden last summer and had an excellent guide in Florence. Her name was Paola and her website is:

We did the tour with 3 other couples and had a great time and Paola did a great job. I would highly recommend her.

In Naples we also used sorrentolimo. They provided us with a driver and a vehicle rather than a guide but also arranged for us to get an official guide at Pompeii. We had a good time there and at Herculaneum as well as being able to tour Naples and see the archelogical museum where a lot of artifacts from both the above sites are on exhibit. I would also recommend them.

We did Venice on our own as we ended our cruise there and spend an extra 3 days after the cruise enjoying that fantastic city.

We didn;t go to dobrovnick, corfu, or cevitaveccea(rome) so I can't help you there.

We did do Monte Carlo where we used dreamtours.

They also did a good job and I would recommend them also. They were also the only independent guide we dealt with that took credit cards.

Our cruise ended in Venice and we stayed an extra 3 days but did not do any organized tours. I will recommend a guide book we used which was AAA Spiral Guide to Venice. It had excellent maps as well as various recommended tour routes. If you are only going to be in Venice for one day definitely see St Marks square and the Doge's palace if you have time. Also be sure to take a waterbus ride up and down the Grand Canal. Route's 1 and 82 both make that trip.

Have a great cruise.


There ya go Jenny...I knew if you posted in this forum you would get some great information. Have fun planning that cruise!

Carol Stone

Hi Jenny,

We recommend the wonderful Salvatore of DriveAmalfi for your private tour in Naples.
We are all booked on a tour of The Amalfi Coast and Pompeii including stops at Ravello and Positano and Amalfi. You can contact him at driveamalfi@


Am taking Royal Princess European Explorer cruise Rome to London May 7, 2004.
1. Will be docking at LeHavre, France. Ship docks at 6 AM and leaves 6 PM on Tuesday May 18. Wish PRIVATE tour of Normandy beaches for three or maybe four people. Don't want to spend time on lunch but to see as much as possibe with an INFORMED guide.
Any suggestions for tour companies?
2. Any suggestions for private guide to Rome sites for a few hours May 6th, or possibly May 7th. And private van to dock one and half hours away (much cheaper than any Princess arranged transfer for four people!).



We did the Med on the Millie this past August...The ports are similar to the ones you'll do ion Brilliance and RCI and Celebrity use the same Shore Excursion operators...

We did cruise line shore excursions in EVERY port...and I give my comments in detail on my cruise review which you can find here:

Just scroll down to the "ports" section of the review where I run down every excursion we did...

On the whole, the excursions were expensive...we paid around $1800 total for two of us for 10 excursions in 9 ports...

BUT, here's my take: How often will you get to these cities again?
And there is SO MUCH to see in each port...
For example, you have a full day in Rome (which is not nearly enough), but why take a $52 half day bus tour? And why spend time in the industrial port of Civitavecchia?
We took the full day $128 "Walk in Renaissance Rome"--which may be the bargain of the Rome full day choices--You get the Trevi, the Pantheon, the Piazza Navonna, the Vatican and a very nice lunch included...And you've gotten to walk Rome, to experience Rome, to really see at least a few of the sights--not just from a seat on a bus...

You can save a few dollars in some ports going out on your own...Dubrovnik really doesn't require a tour...neither does Corfu if you are only wandering the town--but, I do recommend the small price for the half day tour to the Achellion Palace...Villefranch, you can catch a train to Monte Carlo and wander on your own...

But, I would do a tour in Livorno, Rome and Naples for sure...

Venice you can do on your own--buy a copy of the AAA Spiral guide to Venice (about $13.50 at the Auto Club, as low as $10 over the internet) and follow the itineraries...Take a tour of the Doge's Palace and of the Ghetto Synagogues--you can buy the tickets for a few Euros right at the sights themselves...

Again, go visit my review...I hope it would be helpful...and feel free to E-Mail me with any questions...

Have fun...

Mike Andrews

Good advice from Steve, for Livorno (Florence & Pisa) I would recommend Paola of Florence Tour ( and for Naples I recommend Salvatore of DriveAmalfi ( We enjoyed taking the train into Rome and took our own DK tour.


My husband and I just completed our 12 day Mediterranean Cruise. Here is a list of local tour operators we used:

Naples - We used Marcello Maresca from See Sorrento. Our trip will included a visit to Pompeii, then the drive along the Amalfi coast with a stop at his family's restaurant for lunch. Marcello owns the business and has another driver to assist him when he his personally booked up. His website is Marcello's email address is

Athens - we used Spiros from He is very reasonable...around 200 euro for up to 4 people for a full day tour.

Villefranche - We are booked through Dream Tours for a tour to Monte Carlo, Monaco, Nice, Eze, and St. Paul de Vence. Alain is the person who handles the reservations. He was VERY helpful and put up with dozens of emails from me. The website is You can email him at I have also heard that Sylvie De Cristo (sp?) is a wonderful guide here, as well.

Kusadasi (Ephesus) - We used Byzance Limo. The website is The site lists all of the tours and prices. I found them very courteous, professional, and very quick to respond to my emails. There are many wonderful reviews about this company. They were first class and the guides were helpful, informative and very flexible. It was something we enjoyed so much (a feast for the eyes, ears and senses).


Hi Jenny,

We recommend the wonderful Giuseppe of sorrentotopcar for your private tour in Naples.
You can contact him at (
He spoke perfect English,very friendly and an excellent driver.. Our day was to visit Pompei,Sorrento, Positano, and Amalfi,was most knowledgeable of the area.


Wow! Such great information. I came on here because I was w0ndering if it was safe to book your own tours in Europe, the way I always do in the Caribbean. I can see from your information it is! May I ask, will this Paola take us to the Leaning Tower and wait while we go inside, and then take us to Florence? I guess you buy a ticket with a certain time to go inside the tower, would she do that before hand?
Thanks so much!