Username Post: Your First Scrapbook        (Topic#1592991)
Sowa 
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  • Sowa on 12-27-13 09:23 AM

Hello all.

I've just signed up to scrapbook.com, and gearing up for my first project.

I'm going to be making a book about my recent holiday to Poland - as a result I've got over 2,000 photos to go through and a bag full of odds and ends like business cards, flyers and maps to trawl through.

Bit daunting as I've never been 'crafty' - no doubt I'll be doing a lot of reading in your tips and beginners forums!

So out of interest, what was your very first scrapbook project and how did it turn out? How big was your book in the end? Small or ambitious in size?

Would love to hear.

Sowa


 
bonprof
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bonprof
In response to Sowa

Welcome! This is a wonderful place to be. My first book was a family book. I did not know very much so i just put the photos on white pages and then added a few stickers. As i grew more conident in my craft, i learned to "wallpaper" the background with a pattern paper that brought out the best in my photos. Then i got creative with borders...it is a process. Look at the layouts on the gallery and see what you think. Take the beginners class here. We are here to spport you.


 
Mary W.
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Mary W.
In response to bonprof

My first project album was an 8x8 album I made for my dh as a Father's Day gift - it was about his first 20 years of fatherhood. I had been scrapbooking for a while by then, so I had a good feel for what I was doing. But it was the first time I coordinated the papers and embellishments throughout the whole album. I really like how it came out and have since made many other themed albums.

My advice to you is to let your own style develop as you work through it. The gallery here is a great place for some ideas and inspiration, but don't beat yourself up or stress about it if your pages don't end up looking like the ones you see. It is a learning process and we all end up with different looks and feel of our pages.

It sounds like a great project. Have fun with it, and let us see what you come up with!


 
Henri Jean
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Henri Jean
In response to bonprof

My very first scrapbook was in 1969 - I did two or them for my boyfriend and me. One was nearly all photos, more of a picture book on scrapbook pages and one was for momentos and ticket stubs, also in an old scrapbook.

We broke up in 1970 and he took the scrapbooks and I never scrapbooked again. Until we got back together 38 years later.

As soon as we started dating in 2006 and I started scrapbook our adventures. The old scrapbooks resurfaced a few years ago but were completely moldy. I was able to salvage a few photos and get them restored.

So I consider my first scrapbook to be the one I started in 2006 and it has our old photos scrapped in the front.

I do a ton of travel scrapbooking - I have discovered a ton of tips to organizing to scrap big trips.

On one trip I printed 1,800 photos when I got home and it was very manageable because I organized them as soon as they were developed.

Trips are a lot of fun to scrap and there are a lot of great embellishments for travel pages! I've never been to Poland - hope to go some day!

If you want to know things that have helped me in organizing trips so they are easy to scrap let me know and I'll tell you what works for me.

Right now I'm scrapping a trip from earlier this year and I'm on the Athens, Greece part. Then more Greek ports and then Egypt. I love Egypt! THen I think there are a few more Greek ports, then Istanbul. Also took a train to Bucharest, Transylvania (visited Dracula's castle) and Budapest, then went back to Venice. That was a 4 month trip and I'm about half-way through it maybe more.

We leave in about a week on a 113 day world cruise and that will be fun to scrap. But I will organize it before I start scrapping it so it won't be overwhelming.

I've never been to Poland - would love to go some day! Can't wait to see your pages! Have fun with them.

Oh - you asked how first book turned out. It was okay but I wish I had taken my time and thought it through a bit more. I wasn't organized and wasn't on scrapbook.com to get ideas. Now I would do it differently. I was just working on my own and didn't even know what a punch was. I had a pair of scissors (after a couple months I bought a trimmer) and cardstock and some patterned paper. Some repositionable adhesive and that was all I had! No punches or embellies or things that make pages pretty today.


 
Gelidy Gelato
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Gelidy Gelato
In response to Henri Jean

My top 10 tips that have helped me over the years.
1) divide & conquer! – separate your vacation (photos) into manageable sections. You can do it by “the day”, area or theme. I like to “bite off” my vacation into little 2 page or 4 page projects. If you try to do it all at once it’s easy to get overwhelmed and discouraged.
2) combine the stragglers (photos) – all of those 1-off photos you love but don’t really know what to do with, can be combined into a great page. Titles like “us being silly” or “local sites”. And it’s a great page to incorporate some of your memorabilia, postcards, etc.
3) my scanner is my new best friend – use your scanner (or camera) for images of your souvenirs, memorabilia, postcards, handouts, etc. It’s another layer of images you can add to your page.
4) “borrow” from the internet – The internet is a GREAT source of images for things you may have missed, cut off, didn’t photograph well, or when you need just 1 more photo. PS I always add a small photo credit, when I borrow.
5) Design an album – think of ways you can run some familiar elements throughout the entire album. Could be the colors/pattern you use, the text font you use, repeating certain elements, your placement choices, etc. It improves the “flow” of the album.
6) Not every page has to be a masterpiece stuff full of embellishments – the eye needs a chance to relax and take it all in. A few simple pages helps the viewer breath, don’t want to create stimulus overload. Easy to do when EVERY page has flowers, glitter, bling. EDIT.
7) It’s YOUR book and you can “do what you wanna” – do whatever makes you happy! Example: I like corny captions & titles.
8) Don’t be afraid to go back and change something if it bugs you – If something irks you, just go back and change it. It’s your book and you can change it.
9) If you screw up something just replace it – Always try to fix it first with chalk, cover ups, etc. but sometimes you just have to go out and buy another sheet of pattern paper or reprint a photo.
10) SPELL CHECK – Example: There is no rain in reindeer.


 
pugs223
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pugs223
In response to Gelidy Gelato

Welcome to SB.com!

Great tips and advice given already. My thought: my first scrapbook was my month long backpacking through Europe trip. I went to a scrapbook supply party, ordered like a mad woman and dove right in. I don't recall how many pages, but it isn't busting at the seams.

That was 14 years ago.

If I could give my then-self some advice it would be
1) Don't have the 1st thing you ever scrap be the biggest trip and experience you have taken and will probably ever take. Find some other photos and do a few practice layouts to see what comes naturally.

2) don't follow one company's style of product. Research and explore what's out there to find what inspires you the most

3) I didn't have SB.com then. If I did, I'd browse the gallery like crazy and save all the layouts that I like and incorporate that inspiration into my book.

4) you don't have to use same paper, style, etc for the whole book even it's one trip. I mean you can, but you don't HAVE to.

5) you don't have to scrap in order. Put your pics in order and take notes on days events to help organize pages. I can tell the pages I forced myself to when I wasn't feeling them just to scrap in chronological order. That's the beauty of page protectors, you can move your pages as necessary.

6) Have fun!


 
Henri Jean
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Henri Jean
In response to pugs223

Such excellent tips above Peg and Gelato.

Peg really nailed it about not making your most important book being your first one (she worded it better). Practice helps.

I made my wedding album before I discovered the possibilities of what I can do and ended up doing it over. That was a bad choice for a very early album!

I Gelato nailed it with "organize" - I organize and put in files. Then when I get to that file I divide it some more but it is very manageable.


 
RedSquirrel UK
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RedSquirrel UK
In response to Henri Jean

Hi Sowa and welcome from another Brit! I'm near Bristol, not so far away from you.

I began big. I took photos for MIL's/FIL's ruby wedding anniversary celebration and decided to make them an album out of them between February and the beginning of May when they were coming out to meet us. 14 12"x12" pages in 11 weeks, including learning how to do it. I finished the last page the morning we picked them up from the airport.

They loved it so much that I was hooked.


 
justartguy007
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justartguy007
In response to RedSquirrel UK

Hi welcome! My first really scrapbooking was back high school. My junior and senior year. I decided to scrapbook my life in high school. I had one for just high school articles and play program. Because I was in the drama club as a tech crew for a year and half. Before I didn't want to be part of the drama club anymore. The second one was mainly about what I saw in the paper. It mainly what was going on in the world at that time. I collected mainly about 9/11. I kept up with it until around 2006/07. I didn't get back into scrapbook until Aug 2012. So it been a year since I been really getting into the "art" of telling stories with my photos and let my artistic side take over.
I inherited most of both sides of my grandmother's family photos. Since both went into a nursing home in the past year. I decided to make a family history album about both families. I think my scrapbook skills. Are better now then in high school. Because I didn't know a thing about scrapbooking or the supplies that there are now.


 
Vae
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Vae
  • Vae on 12-27-13 05:59 PM
In response to pugs223

  • pugs223 Said:

1) Don't have the 1st thing you ever scrap be the biggest trip and experience you have taken and will probably ever take. Find some other photos and do a few practice layouts to see what comes naturally.



This is exactly what I was going to say!

Welcome to the site! there are always lots of people here to help you out as you work on your project.

My first album was a book of me when I was a baby... I was starting chronologically. It's really amazing to look back at those pages and see how far I've come. I made a lot of mistakes though and some of them were on very important pages, so I'd definitely start with some of your less important pics until you've gotten comfortable.


 
Henri Jean
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Henri Jean
In response to Vae

Exactly - a minor trip or vacation or weekend getaway is a fun thing to start with.



 
terrihooper
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terrihooper
In response to Vae

I don't think there are any real mistakes to make-- you just get better as you do it and learn new techniques.
I look at my first pages and realize I have come A LONG WAY but I do not think I need to re-do those pages or that they are bad.
It is all about preserving memories and being creative so just go for it-- I am creative but not really artistic. Don't expect your pages to be a piece of art right off the bat-- Enjoy the process and preserve the memories and you will be fine!
It isn't about what is "right" or "wrong" it is about where you are in your craft and what you like. It is a lot of fun to go back and see how far you have come and how your techniques have advanced.


 
Expert
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In response to Henri Jean

I completely agree with the "don't start with something huge" idea. I would recommend starting with some every day, or even some older pictures you have, just to get some practice in. In the meantime I would also recommend that you start to organize for your big Poland book, but not necessarily diving right into making the layouts.

My first album was for my oldest son, starting right before he was pregnant, and only making it to about 6 months before I filled up the album! He was only 3 months old when I started so it was easy to do.


 
olleharr
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olleharr
In response to HuskerMom98

I agree with that too. I wish my first album had been smaller. I started with all of my dad's childhood and family photos. That was 10 years ago and I'm still not done. It was such a big project and I was so new to scrapbooking that I kind of got bored with it and moved on to try other things. I thought I'd get back to it but still haven't. Actually that is my new years resolution for 2014. I really need to redo some pages also because I used a lot of things that weren't acid free because I wasn't wise to that then.


 
Henri Jean
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Henri Jean
In response to olleharr

I did a book of our adventures together and a short cruise was in the first book. I hate to say it but I did go back and take some of those pages apart and rework them. However, it was interesting that I actually did really like some of my early work and saved and scanned it the way it was done. But there was some I couldn't live with - had to re-do. If I had the gallery here and other work to get ideas from it would have been better but I had no direction - completely on my own.

My second album was my wedding album. It got completely taken apart and redone! I was not ready to do it the way I wanted. Some day I really want want to redo it over again (for the third time)but it won't be anytime soon. Have too much current stuff to do. And now I know enough to know that I don't know how I want it to look. Did that make sense?







 
NMscrapper
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NMscrapper
In response to Henri Jean

Hi Sowa and welcome! My scrapbooking began in 2003 when d/h and I both inherited all of our old family photos . . . to add to the boxes of our own that were stacked in a closet.

I don't remember how it happened, but I saw scrapbook pages somewhere on the internet and got interested. Back then, about all we had were decorative scissors, cardstock and some stickers. That was probably a good thing, since I could progress as new things became available and as my confidence grew. Sb.com has always been my go-to for both products and inspiration.

My first project was a scrapbook of all of my hubby's son's pictures from babyhood on. It took a long while to complete, but there was no pressure to have it done immediately. I look back at it now and it seems really crude. I sometimes think of redoing it but hesitate to change what I did back then.

Starting with something small, or something that can be finished in sections, is great for your morale. You can look at it with a feeling of accomplishment and pride. Then, you can tackle your big project with new skills and confidence.

Good luck with your project. Can't wait to see your pages here.


 
Unique scrapper
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Unique scrapper
In response to NMscrapper

my first project was in 2008 when we took a family cruise in the Mediterranean. It ended up being 3 books with pages added to each of the 12x12 albums and took me about 3 months of not steady work.
I knew NOTHING about scrapping back then but I went to a scrapbook event in Chattanooga, Tennessee (I live in NJ) where I took classes and bought a lot of stuff and came home and 3 weeks later went to a CKC in Connecticut and then the following summer attended more scrapping events and classes and now, I have a room full of stuff and fluff and numerous class kits that I try to put into good use. I am trying to stop buying any more supplies except for adhesive and well, sometimes I just HAVE to have that book of paper!


 
Henri Jean
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Henri Jean
In response to Unique scrapper

You had a great subject to scrap! I'm scrapping the Mediterranean portion of our last cruise now - such fun ports!

Sounds like you immediately really got into it and learned!

Would love to see you books! I bet they are awesome!


 
PhotobearSam
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PhotobearSam
In response to Henri Jean

My first scrap pages to get my feet wet were pics of my cats. Once I felt comfortable after about 8-9 layouts, I scrapped a trip to Pigeon Forge, Nashville, Memphis and Tupelo with my Mom. It was an awesome trip and I liked that my first project had a start and a finish.


 
Unique scrapper
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Unique scrapper
In response to Sowa

Remember also that not every photo needs to be scrapped! You can also use the photo sleeves that will hold several photos. Just remember to journal so that you will be able to tell others about your travel


 
bonprof
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bonprof
In response to Unique scrapper

Journaling is the most important element!! Even if i didn't
do a fancy job on my first books, my journaling really told the story. I cant emphasize enough how important it is.


 
Crafting Marfa
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Crafting Marfa
In response to Unique scrapper

My first scrapbook was not a project. I just started scrapping photos that I liked. It got pretty fat...lol I prefer to scrap photos as I'm in the mood. I have also learned to edit myself a lot. Several months ago when I went through all my scrapbooks I realized that most of the photos meant absolutely nothing to me. They were just spur of the moment scrapping. I thinned out my books to photos that really meant something to me and now I choose very carefully the photos that I'm going to scrap.


 
Henri Jean
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Henri Jean
In response to Crafting Marfa

I agree Donna. I've noticed that when family or friends go through my scrapbooks they spend as much or more time reading the journaling as they do looking at the pictures. Especially my kids.

My best friend in Florida teaches art history in the high school and she loves all my journaling in Italy and Greece about the statues and monuments.

And Bill and I really enjoy reliving the funny stories and events of the day when they are journaled to go with the pictures.

I scrap everything. I know I don't have to but I really prefer to. A lot of people say you don't have to scrap every picture but that is a really personal thing and I want to.



 
Henri Jean
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Henri Jean
In response to Henri Jean

Marfa - you are so right! I am in the process of scanning all my pages (26 books - approx. 90 pages each) and it is amazing how many of them just aren't important to me anymore.

I'm scanning and printing all my layouts in Shutterfly books and including the important ones and not-important ones, since they did mean something to me at one time and they are still memories. Then I'm tossing out those original pages if they don't mean much to me. Like pictures at a car show Bill and I went too. The originals are going out but when Bill looked at the printed books he talked a lot about that car show and how cool it was! So I have it printed, not the original.

All of the pages will be in the Shutterfly books. Originals of ones that don't mean much anymore will be tossed but I will keep the original favorites and frame them or put them in a nice small album or even make books for family and friends and let them have the originals.

We have friends in Hawaii and when we go to Hawaii every year we do a lot together so I have a lot of pages with them from the past 6 years. They are being scanned and put in my Shutterfly books but the originals will make a nice scrapbook for her for Christmas next year.


 
Unique scrapper
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Unique scrapper
In response to Henri Jean

that was just one area of the Mediterranean and then, in 2009 we did another part of the Med with Greece. And in 2011, we did parts of Spain with the Rock of Gibraltar and Portugal thrown in. Those travel books sure do take me a long, long time to complete. However, my family sure do seem to appreciate the work that goes into my books. When my oldest son got engaged in 2012, his fiancé asked if she had now earned a page in my scrapbooks! I had explained to her that even though it was slow going, I tended to scrap chronologically and that I was at that point up to my daughter's Sweet 16 party which the future DD-I-L was at, I knew that night at the party that she would be my daughter-in-law. I also told her that eventually, she would have her very own scrapbook. Of course, I am still working on that book. I hope that one day REAL soon, I will be able to scrap pregnancy photos of my grandchild. (PLEASE, God, make it happen soon!).


 
Henri Jean
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Henri Jean
In response to Unique scrapper

Where did you go in Greece? We just went to Argostoli, Athens, Rhodes, Olympia, Mykonos, Crete, Santorini and a few others. Loved it. In Spain I've only been to Cadiz and Barcelona. We went by the Rock of Gibralter at least twice and it was always pitch black and we couldn't see a thing! We want to go to Portugal. We did go the the Azures earlier this year which is part of Portugal but I haven't actually been to Portugal. Just seems that the more places we go, the more places I realize we haven't been and I want to go!


 
GentlewoodFarms
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GentlewoodFarms
In response to Unique scrapper

The advice I'd give is this.

A scrapbook is not a photo album. The reason you scrap photos is because a scrapbook allows you to journal and tell a story about the photo(s). Not every photograph needs to go into your scrapbook - only those that have a story worth telling. The rest of the photos can go in the accompanying photo album.

Never scrapbook a photograph that you don't really REALLY love. It's too much work for your just "ok" photos.

Never scrapbook with paper that you don't really REALLY love. Paper tells as much of the story about your photos and who you are as the story itself does.

Enjoy the process. It's not a race. Think of your project as "building." You have the ground floor - your paper base and overall design structure. You have the walls - the large embellishments and photographs. You have the roof - the little embellishments that add those final details. Give yourself time to create each part of the building and see how you "feel" about it before you move on.

Don't forget to journal the story. I always put mine on the backs of my projects - the whole reason that I scrap a photo is because I want to tell the story. If you don't - you've just created a VERY expensive, glorified photo album, and that's just a waste of your time and effort.

That's MY humble $.02


 
GentlewoodFarms
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GentlewoodFarms
In response to GentlewoodFarms

My first album was a promotional book for my appaloosa stallion. It started with his baby pictures on his first day and documented his life and major events and accomplishments. I took it with him while we were showing on the national circuit, sort of a marketing tool to introduce him to prospective mare owners. I didn't know it was called a scrapbook at the time. I just called it "Faroh's Book."

It was popular with people who came by his stall to visit during horse shows. I had lots of them ask me if I'd consider doing one for them -- the answer was always, "um, I really don't have time to do that..." I was flattered to be asked, but I really dreaded the idea of the work involved in creating another one.

I tucked ribbons, judges score cards, back numbers, national entry forms, his registration papers, etc into pockets and on pages. It ended up being only about 20 pages because he died of liver cancer at age 4. The last page of the book is a page of his first (and only) two foals.

When I look at it now, I see the lack of my technical skill, but that's not really the thing I notice. I enjoy going back and looking at the photos of him and me and reading my thoughts at that time. It's a snapshot of a point in time of my past, and that's more important to me than how much "skill" I had creating it.


 
Henri Jean
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Henri Jean
In response to GentlewoodFarms

Excellent points above - its not a race. Its something to be enjoyed. Some people work fast (I make 8-10 layouts some days) and some people work slow. You will find what is right for you. Sometimes I will get stumped on layout for days or weeks. It just varies. But like she said, its not a race.

It seems like when I do the harder ones to scrap or the ones that aren't as interesting I put more time and energy into turning them into ones I like and those have turned out to be some of my favorites - the ones I didn't want to scrap but dug in my heels and do it. I really put more work into those to make them work and on most of the "don't want to do's" - they are now favorites.

I am also a big believer in journaling! I love the story. I put it front and center with the picture so it can't be missed. I want the picture and the story right there together. When my kids look at my books (or anyone else) I notice they seem to enjoy the journaling as much as the photos.

My feelings about scrapping every picture are different though. I feel that whether to scrap every picture is a personal decision and I usually do try to scrap them all. I've printed as many as 1,800 after a trip. Some I love, some I don't but they all tell the story of that trip. If I have a ton of very similar pictures I won't scrap them all but I scrap pictures of places I didn't care for or enjoy too much because I want the record of "We were there".

I guess I had to go back to why I personally scrap. I scrap to document my husband's and my romantic journey and its taken me to many events, places even on the backs of camels and elephants! Its taken me to birthday parties I didn't enjoy but scrapped anyway because they are part of our history together.

I scrap every picture that has a story to tell, even if I hate the picture. I'm so glad I do too because my husband and I go through our books and relive every day of our trips. When the day comes when we can't travel anymore, everything we have done together is documented; trips and vacation, family gatherings, holidays - its all there.

If the picture is really not good but there are no other ones of that day or person or event, I still use it. Its a memory for us.

So many times I've gone through my stash with a few photos in hand and the only papers that go with the photo are really ugly. I figure out how to make them look better because the colors and patterns go so well. I did one a while back - didn't like the photos, hated the papers and it ended up being one of my favorites. It got a lot of positive comments too.

You just have to decide which moments you want to capture and remember in your books. I want to remember them all!

Not to disagree with the poster above - just showing the other side.

We all scrap for different reasons and some of us do like to scrap everything. Its okay to do that and its okay just to scrap some of them.

You just have to decide what is right for you.

Just found one where I hated the photos, not clear or good photos and couldn't stand the papers I used. Almost put them in the swap bin at a crop. This is one that sat on my desk for weeks and I finally forced myself to do it. Now I'm really glad I made this one!

It's my brother-in-law driving in Miami with his two standard poodles - one with his head through the sunroof going down the interstate - we were in the car next to him.

Why There are Sunroofs By Henri Jean



 
Unique scrapper
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Unique scrapper
In response to Henri Jean

Greece was the usual cruise stops. The only thing that we did a little differently was when we got to Athens (Piraeus) I had a driver pick us up and take us to Sojourn (about 2 hours outside of Athens) to see an old temple dedicated to Poseidon and Athena. Poseidon is one of my DH's favorite Greek gods. Whenever we have gone on a cruise, I study cruiseCritic.com to see what there is to do. Since it is usually 5 of us traveling, I had found it to be less expensive to do our own private tours with a driver at our disposal. Worked well when we docked in Le Havre for Paris since we beat the cruise bus to Paris and we got to go up the Eiffel Tower while the bus only drove around it and stopped for a photo op. Learned a lot on that site.
If you ever can, you must go to Gibraltar. It was fascinating! I cannot believe how the British dug that thing out starting in the 1700s! Amazing port.


 
Henri Jean
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Henri Jean
In response to Unique scrapper

I think the way you do - we find people on the ship with interests similar to our and we hire a drive to take us on a private tour. We avoid the tour buses as much as possible because you spend more time getting off and one the buses than you actually spend doing anything sometimes. And some places - they just can't accommodate a tour bus full of people.

And like you said, the private excursions or tours are usually a lot less money!

Love cruise critic - we are Florida Cruisin' Couple on that site.

We find we have a lot more adventures in a small group!

Wish I had known about Sojourn. There was a statue of Poseidon near the cruise ship port and we took a picture. Would love to have seen the temple! Wanted to see the Acropolis and other things too and we were at a disadvantage because we were there Sunday and Monday and Sunday was their Easter so everything was closed. We rode the hop-on hop-off bus on Sunday but it was Monday before we could get up to the Acropolis or see anything.

Next time we are near Gibralter I want to see it!

Sorry for hijacking this thread - when you talk about travelling I get sidetracked!

Unique Scrapper - we have a thread in Critique Groups called Bitten By the Travel Bug. Why don't you wander over there and post some travel layouts and talk to us about travel. I would love to hear more and see your layouts!





 
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