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Author: sealionlady

Joined: 8/1/2010
Posts: 124
Trips Taken: 13
Traveler Since: 2001

April 03, 2013

I love river cruising!  I recently saw two new river cruises offered by another company and I sure wish GCT would consider these trips.  The first was a French river cruise called "Chateaux, Rivers and Wine".  It is an 8 day trip, on the river Garonne, starting and ending in the city of Bordeaux.   The second is a 10 day trip in Portugal, on the Douro River, starting in Lisbon and ending in Porto.  I would also like to see a Portugal land trip, but that's another topic!

..... and .... as I mentioned before ..... I would love a "South-of-France" Christmas cruise.

 

Author: mewslp

Joined: 5/15/2011
Posts: 43
Trips Taken: 14
Traveler Since: 2002

April 04, 2013

 I too am interested in the Duoro river cruise, but even more in the Ukraine-Black Sea river cruise that was scheduled for this year, but had to be cancelled.  Hope to see it for 2014!

Author: captainlarry

Joined: 4/24/2010
Posts: 413
Trips Taken: 10
Traveler Since: 2002

April 04, 2013

I have also considered a cruise on the Duoro. I Googled "Duoro River Cruises" and found that there are a lot of opportunities. The most well-known (to me) company offering the cruise is Viking River Cruises, but there are many others. I am not yet seriously thinking about booking with one of these other companies, but Grand Circle Cruise Lines could really tempt me were they to offer a Duoro River cruise.

I was also just about ready to rebook the Classic Costa del Sol when they cancelled it.

Author: pauline

Joined: 3/9/2010
Posts: 970
Trips Taken: 11
Countries Visited:

England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Malta, Israel, Australia, New Zealand, China, Mexico, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Canada, Russia, Ukraine

Traveler Since: 1999

April 04, 2013

I feel the same way.  I'm on the Paris to Honfleur in July, and I just looked at the other French river cruise for next year, but it duplicates a lot of this.  Same with Romance of the Rhine and Moselle.  I've already seen most of those places.  Since I'm not physically up to any of the others, I may have to rethink my traveling.

It's not that I would mind going back to places I've loved.  After all, I've been to New Zealand four times, once for two months.  It's just I enjoy the river cruises so much.

Author: kba

Joined: 6/19/2010
Posts: 67
Trips Taken: 5
Traveler Since: 2009

April 04, 2013

I'm with you Pauline.....I am not able to "keep up" with rigorous touring and river cruising is wonderful.  I hope Grand Circle introduces some new cruises.  I was also signed up for the Costa del Sol and it was cancelled. 

Author: pauline

Joined: 3/9/2010
Posts: 970
Trips Taken: 11
Countries Visited:

England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Malta, Israel, Australia, New Zealand, China, Mexico, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Canada, Russia, Ukraine

Traveler Since: 1999

April 04, 2013

Classic Costa del Sol was my first GCT trip.  We took the third week extension and just poked around on our own.  I'd go back in a minute!

Author: captainlarry

Joined: 4/24/2010
Posts: 413
Trips Taken: 10
Traveler Since: 2002

April 04, 2013

Before we went to Torremolinos I met a lady on the Virtual Tourist forum. She and her husband, from Ontario, were going to overlap a week with our stay on the Costa del Sol. They had been going for a few weeks each winter for several years. They were staying at the Bajondillos and they booked their own arrangements directly with the hotel. We spent a bit of time conversing around the hotel, but they had their own friends from previous visits and we had our GCT friends, including the couple that we frequently travel with. My point is that independent stays on the Costa del Sol are possible, but, to my mind, would not be as comfortable or as convenient as the three weeks we had as members of the GCT crew, being watched over by Antonio.

Author: pauline

Joined: 3/9/2010
Posts: 970
Trips Taken: 11
Countries Visited:

England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Malta, Israel, Australia, New Zealand, China, Mexico, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Canada, Russia, Ukraine

Traveler Since: 1999

April 04, 2013

When we were there, we met a lot of people who spent the winters there.  Most were from states like Montana or Wyoming that have terrible winters.  But I think if I were going to do that, I would want to rent an apartment, not stay in a hotel room with a stove that frightened me.  We never cooked on it.

That third week, some people went back to Mija on the train or bus because it's so lovely and they felt they hadn't had long enough there.  Some of us walked around Torremolinos, went up those stairs to the upper part of town.  Had drinks and listened to music in the square.  I walked down the other way where I found a supermercado and a launderette and a used bookstore run by a German lady. 

It was just a great trip with a lot of time on the tours  -  Sevilla, Ronda, etc.  Why did they discontinue it?

Author: captainlarry

Joined: 4/24/2010
Posts: 413
Trips Taken: 10
Traveler Since: 2002

April 04, 2013

The "official" response was that they could not maintain the quality of the tour without "substantially" increasing the cost. The cancellation could not be blamed on a lack of popularity. We rode the bus and the train up and down the coast to visit some of the other towns. That was fun. Were the tour still available in it's previous configuration I would be more selective in which tours I would take and would spend more time touring independently. I skipped Sevilla the last time and I would make that trip the next time. But I've been to Tangiers, and I've been to Gibraltar, and I had more than a lifetime supply of Piccaso. I would go back to Rhonda, Mijas, and the Alhambra.

We spent the last two weeks of January and the first week of February 2009 in Torremolinos. We spent the last two weeks of January 2008 in Naples, Florida. Even including the transportation costs, we spent considerably more for the trip to Florida than for the trip to Spain.

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