Regent Seven Seas Navigator September. 2008 Istanbul to Athens
I recently had the pleasure of hosting Regent Seven Seas Navigator Istanbul to Athens itinerary. Having never been to that part of the world, my husband and I spent 4 additional nights in Istanbul and 3 in Athens.
I was pleasantly surprised with Istanbul. Obtaining a Turkish Visa is easy and quick. $20.00 USD paid at the airport. I found the city to be warm, welcoming, easily accessible with public transportation and excellent food. We boarded the ship on Tuesday September 9th, with a one night on board before sailing on Sept. 10th. The Navigator is beautiful. She is small enough to navigate, yet large enough to offer all the amenities of 6 Star Luxury. Each suite averages 301 square feet in the minimum categories, with a walk in closet, safe, flat screen TV, tub and separate shower in the bath. I do admit, that the Category F Suites which are located aft will feel vibration from the engines.
The itinerary was excellent visiting Turkey, Egypt and Greece. At each port a local representative was on board each morning to provide guests with maps and information. Very useful for guests not participating in an organized shore excursions. The front desk staff was always eager and willing to accommodate guests.
Announcements on board are at a minimum, in keeping with a small luxury sailing. The entertainment, whether invited venues, or the Regent singers and dancers, were all quite good. There are a number of lectures on board and of course email access to keep you connected to the world. Although, there is WiFi, I had trouble connecting in my suite and found myself most times using the internet cafe.
We had the opportunity to dine at Compass Rose, and Portofino, the alternative dining venue for evenings with buffets for breakfast and lunch. No matter where we dined, the food was always plentiful, with a wide variety of choices to tempt any palate. Room service was prompt, very efficient, and also offered a sizeable menu, with many choices.
The Cocktail Party on board was a huge success, with an attendance of 32 out of 40. Everyone was having a wonderful cruise and the newbie's to Regent were quite impressed with the ship, staff and service on board. It was highlighted with the Captain and many of his staff attending to mix and mingle with all of the guests for the duration. It made such a wonderful impression.
Our weather while onboard was perfect throughout, sun shining with light breezes. We docked at most ports, and when we tendered, it was a smooth and easy process. Very well organized, with no lines. Passengers were able to get off as early as 8:00AM depending on the port. Disembarkation in Athens was smooth and without any problems. It was pouring rain, and Regent had pursers available at the gangplank to help with carry on luggage. Although Piraeus is not far from Athens, be prepared to pay a healthy sum for a taxi. Our cost 45Euro, one way. Unfortunately for us our 3 days in Athens was wet with down pours every day. We made the most of it and went to Delphi one day, Sounion another, and highlighted the city with a walking tour of the Acropolis.
Our vacation was wonderful and I look forward to sailing with Regent in the future.