I don't know about Bilbao but La Rochelle is a cracking place to wander around or sit and people watch with a coffee and cognac. Why not take a look at their tourist site on the web and study it for yourself. ... Neil.
I'll second that, but would add a dozen huitre (Oysters) for lunch washed down with a good Chablis. I feel I'm there just thinking about it. Enjoy your visit Louise. Richard.
You may not be docking at La Rochelle due to the French Docker strike that has been ongoing for months!! P&O have already written to their pax saying it will be replaced by Gurnsey
Ring your TA to check!
La Rochelle is one of the nicest ports in France IMO. I wouldn't do a tour in case missed Richard to share his wine!
I have just been on a similar cruise. At Bilbao it is nice to walk off the boat (walk past the queue for the bus) and walk to the end of the harbour (20 mins). Then there is a nice beach on one side or the other way you can walk into a nice town (another 20 or 30 mins) with an old transporter bridge you can go up. We also got a cheap drink (3 beers + 1 coffee for 6 Euros) at a place where lots of people were getting nice calamari too but we just walked back for afternoon tea on the QE2 (I recommend the Lido as Queens room is v busy). The good thing about walking round the harbour and into town is you get fantastic views of the QE2 (from both the shore and transporter bridge) which is great for your pics (take a long lens if you have one).