Planning our excursions with Carnival Cruises


Last month I was one of the lucky 5 families chosen to become a Carnival Cruise Ambassador and we have just received the details of the destinations our cruise ship Vista will be taking us next year.

We shall be flying in to one of my favourite European cities, Barcelona and I am hoping we get to spend a little time there as I would love to show the kids some of the sights.

Few places in the world pack in as much culture per square meter as Europe does and our cruise packs in some of the cities I most want to visit.  These cities are some of the oldest in the world, places where even today art, food and history come together in a mix of sensory delights.

Our first stop is Messina, Scicily – the city that launched a thousand ships and home to Mount Etna. Our plan is to go to the depths of Europe’s largest active volcano by cable car and 4×4 vehicles.

The Carnival excursion takes you by coach to Mount Etna and then you take a 6 person cable car for the ascent into the crater to 2500 meters before boarding your 20 or 26 person 4 x 4 Mercedes (or IVECO) vans for a 20 minute off-road adventure to reach the ultimate 2900 meters above sea level. There is then a 45 minute informative walking tour, learning about the amazing volcano.

Mount Etna

Our second stop is Naples and I cannot wait to see Mount Vesuvius. I wanted to study geology at university and have a fascination with volcanoes and earthquakes so hope to visit Pompeii and Herculaneum to see the destruction the eruption caused although I am torn between that and climbing Vesuvius itself.. Pompeii has possibly the most famous excavation in the world as it was here a flourishing civilization was buried for 1,700 years. It has been brought to life again so we can see how the citizens of the greatest empire the world has even known lived and loved; worked and played; ate and drank and died. The organised tour also includes visits to Sorrento and Capri.


Next up is Rome and I am would love to visits its ancient sites such as the Pantheon, Colosseum and St Peter’s Basilica. There are a few different tours to choose from as the catacombs also appeal but having just one day doesn’t leave much time.


Livorna is next and here we are planning to take the excursion to the Leaning Tower of Pisa and climb the 297 steps to the top of the bell tower.


Marseille is our penultimate stop and we plan a nice relaxing gentle tour of the city with a shopping trip. This tour offers a photo stop to take pictures at the Cathedral of Saint Marie Majeure, the Fortress of Saint John, the Romanesque church of San Lorenzo and admire the view of the city from the Church of Notre Dame de la Garde before some free time for us to shop.


Palma has the most thrill seeking adventures to try, including a 4×4 trek and a Rancho Grande horse ride, but we have already decided on a thrilling helicopter excursion that will take us high above Mallorca so we can see this beautiful island from a completely new perspective and then it is back to Barcelona for our flight home.

One thing is for sure – it is going to be a busy few days!!

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20 thoughts on “Planning our excursions with Carnival Cruises

  1. I’m so excited for our Carnival Cruise – there are some fab shore excursions to choose from, how to pick?!!
    JuggleMum, Nadine Hill recently posted…Summer body: Made in winterMy Profile

  2. Charly Dove says:

    Oh my goodness Kara, this is going to be absolutely amazing! Can’t wait to read all about it, we’ve not been on a cruise before. Love the idea of a cruise, you’ll have an absolute ball too 🙂
    Charly Dove recently posted…What’s The Story? | 23rd November 2015My Profile

  3. Ickle Pickle says:

    Oh how amazing – you lucky thing! I have been to Sicily – Mount Etna is truly incredible. I can’t wait to read about your travels. Kaz x
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  4. Shabs says:

    Wow that sounds amazing! Rome is one of my favourite cities in the world… And look out for the red light district in Pompeii, its fascinating!

  5. Wow, lucky you! Have never been on a cruise, so will be watching your updates. I am sure you will have a great time!
    Mirka Moore @Fitness4Mamas @Kahanka recently posted…I am a Finalist #BLAwards2015 – Vote for Fitness 4 MamasMy Profile

  6. This sounds like a brilliant trip – I’m sure that you’ll all have a fantastic time!
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  7. Stephen says:

    Rome is in my top 10 places that I really want to visit, though people tell me that you are constantly harassed as a tourist.
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  8. Erica Price says:

    I would go for going to Pompeii rather than the volcano. We have never done the volcano, but I know lots of people have said it’s a bit dull. Loads to see at Pompeii.
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  9. Jaime Oliver says:

    oh wow what a totally exciting adventure you guys are going to have!
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  10. Keri-Anne says:

    Congrats on being picked! I hope you have an amazing time. Italy is one place i have wanted to go to for a long time x

  11. oana79 says:

    Congrats, Kara, it does sound like an amazing cruise and role to have!xx
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  12. Firstly congratulations on your role as Ambassador. They have picked some beautiful places to visit and lots of great excursions too. I look for to reading your posts on cruising with the family. Well done xx
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  13. Jen says:

    I love the sound of all the excursions and the places you will be visiting. I am a total seasick person though, so a cruise is not my idea of fun
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  14. Foz says:

    Oh wow! This sounds totally amazing. Hope you have a brilliant time!
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  15. Sonia says:

    It sounds like an amazing adventure for you all, I bet you’re really excited x
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  16. Rachel says:

    Wow now this is an interesting cruise, all of those amazing places, most of which I would love to visit! The only place ive been is Pisa and that was years ago on an Easyjet deal for 2p lol x
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  17. Sarah Ebner says:

    Wow, wow, wow. This really does sound incredible – you are doing so much and it all sounds amazing! My kids are desperate to go to Italy so they’d love that aspect particularly. Hope you have a brilliant time.
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  18. What an amazing time you’re going to have – we’ve visited some of these places when we did a cruise and it was one of my favourite holidays ever x
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  19. Sonya Cisco says:

    Wow – you are going to have an amazing time! Looking forward to hearing all about it!
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  20. Orli says:

    Wow that sounds amazing! It seems like you are going to have such a fab cruise! You have some of my favourite destinations on your list 🙂 Though we’ve been planning it for years, we still haven’t done a proper cruise, but it is definitely still on my bucket list.
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