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Fly straight to the sun


Avid cruiser Margaret Lorrimore on her first experience of a sunny Mediterranean fly-cruise holiday on board Oceana

Margaret and John Lorrimore in Kotor on a Mediterranean fly-cruise holiday

‘My husband and I started cruising in 2002, and have been on some wonderful trips around the Mediterranean and along the fjords in Norway. This year, we went on our first Fly-cruise holiday. We stayed at a hotel the night before so we didn’t have to worry about being late for our flight, and the journey was very straightforward. On the way back it was even easier: we simply collected our boarding passes before we left the ship and our luggage was checked-in for us.


‘My husband, John, really enjoys sailing out of Southampton as it gives him a few days to unwind, but I’m not such a good sailor and really appreciated landing in the sunshine and being able to start our holiday straight away. On this trip, we visited quite a few ports that we hadn't been to before, including Dubrovnik and Corfu, where we did a brilliant wine tasting shore excursion. However, Kotor was probably my favourite stop. We went on a hair-raising coach trip high up into the mountains, where the scenery was just incredible and we could see Oceana far out in the distance.


‘Sailing into Venice was really something – standing on deck listening to the commentary over the tannoy and looking either side, back and forth, as if we were at a tennis match! There was just so much to look at. Then, just as we got off the water taxi, it absolutely poured with rain. Fortunately, an entrepreneurial street-seller was beside us in a flash with umbrellas and pink and yellow ponchos, which we wore as we toured the Venetian streets looking like a bouquet of gaily coloured flowers.


‘On board, we usually take the opportunity to relax and read our books, although we sometimes go to a talk or evening show, and we always attend the Sunday service. What we love best, however, is the black-tie evenings. We both enjoy getting dressed up, and my husband likes to coordinate his bow tie with my evening dress – although next time I think I might buy him a bow tie and give myself the challenge of finding a matching dress! On this cruise, we were with my brother and sister-in-law so we had good company every evening, and our waiters were wonderfully attentive – particularly to my brother, who is a diabetic.


‘It’s these unfailingly polite and courteous crew members, and also the ‘Britishness’ of the experience, that we love most about holidays with P&O Cruises – nothing is ever too much trouble. But I also think that the key to our enjoyment is that we look at each new adventure with fresh eyes and never allow ourselves to become blasé about the wonderful experiences we have.’


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Margaret Lorrimore

Margaret is a retired district nurse and her husband John a retired auditor. They live in Rayleigh, Essex.