Rhapsody of the Seas Cruise Review to Europe - Eastern Mediterranean

Contributor Level: Purser

2-3 cruises


Helpful Votes

5 out of 5

Great cruise of the Eastern Med

Sail Date: July 03, 2015

Reviewed: 1 year ago

Traveled As: Couple

Room Type: Oceanview

My wife and I celebrated our 15th anniversary aboard the Rhapsody of the Seas and had an incredible time.

The good:

- The staff is absolutely amazing.  Fabio in guest services, Karen in the Shore Excursions team, and even Bennett our stateroom attendant, were all excellent and went way above and beyond to answer any question and fulfill any request we had.

- The shore excursions were awesome.  A bit pricey but you'll get that on any cruise you go on, but there was a wide variety of unique opportunities (like kayaking around Santorini) to choose from to fit every taste and physical ability.  Would recommend booking early like we did however, as many of the ones we went on were sold out before the cruise even started.

- The specialty restaurants (Giovanni's, Chops Grille and Izumi) were spectacular with amazing food and waitstaff to match.

- Though older, the ship was very well maintained and extremely clean.

- The headliner shows offered on board were awesome and catered to many different age groups.

The bad:

- It is one of the smaller ships in the RC fleet so don't anticipate many of the amenities that other, newer ships have to offer.  That said, there are only two pools, each of which are not very big.  One of them was adult-only, but inside in a solarium.  If you wanted to be outside, there is only one pool area and on days at sea you better reserve your deck chair well before 9am or you'll be waiting a looong time for one to open up.

- The RC singers for their evening shows were awful.  Most of their "lead" vocalists were often off-tune or very pitchy such that we only attended the first of three shows featuring the RC singers and dancers.  Many audience members left during the first performance of the cruise.

In summary, though Rhapsody isn't the newest ship in the fleet, it was a teriffic host for an amazing cruise.  The destinations combined with the incredible staff of this ship made for an unforgettable experience!


Food and Dining
Highly recommend the My Time dining option (Edelweis restaurant) as opposed to the Windjammer buffet, but even Windjammer had a good selection of food (though with markedly less quality waitstaff). The specialty restaurants were all amazing with excellent food and incredible waitstaff.
Service and Staff
Fabio (guest services manager) and Karen (Shore Excursions Team lead) were absolutely incredible and went out of their way to help us.
Headliner shows were awesome, but those featuring the RC singers and dancers were awful.
Onboard Activities
Limited options compared to some of the newer, bigger ships of the fleet, but still a good variety of things to do for all ages.
Destinations and Excursions
We picked this cruise based on the itinerary. Hits all the highlights of Greece and Italy, and with the help of Karen and her shore excursions team, we thoroughly enjoyed all of our time off the ship.
Ship Quality
The ship is older but with a renevation completed in 2012, the ship is very well maintained and doesn't seem "older".
Embarkation and Disembarkation
Cabin / Stateroom
Perfect size for two people with a great ocean view.
Istanbul, Turkey
Thessaloniki, Greece
We just disembarked from the ship to walk around town. Saw some great sights (including the White Tower) but may be helpful to take one of the excursions to other nearby areas.
Mykonos, Greece
LOVED THIS PLACE!!! We did the Ancient Delos excursion which included a wild boat ride back from the island and then spent the afternoon in Mykonos town exploring the shops, restaurants (go to Familia!!) and windmills.
Santorini, Greece
We did the kayaking tour which was AWESOME!! Again, LOVED this place and only wish we had more time to spend in the town proper.
Piraeus (Athens), Greece
Do the Parthenon tour!!! We did the Taste of Athens excursion which included the Parthenon tour and included extra hours on the back end to check out Athens' restaurants and shops. Best excursion.
Messina, Sicily
Mt. Etna was awesome but only got to spend a little time in nearby Taormina. Would recommend more time in Taormina if possible.
Naples, Italy
We did the Mt. Vesuvius hike and tour of Pompeii. Highly recommend but be prepared for some serious uphill hiking. Again, didn't have much time to spend in Naples afterwards so plan your time accordingly.
Civitavecchia (Rome), Italy
If this is the start or the end of your cruise, do plan on staying extra days like we did becasue there is soooooooo much to do in Rome. The strength of this cruise was that it ended in Rome allowing us to spend more time than simply a 6-8 hour excursion.


- For at sea days, get to the main pool area very early if you want a deck chair.
- Book your excursions before you get on board as some of the more popular ones sold out even before the cruise
- Eat at My Time dining and do try the specialty restaurants

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