Location: Paris, France
Sunday morning we all went on cruise on the river seine before Chris and Rach left for England. Over the two days we saw the Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triomphe, The Notre Dame, La Madeleine, Pantheon, the Louvre, a cruise on the river Siene, a show at the Moulin Rogue plus the girls shopped on the Champs Elysees.
Checked in at the airport and got the fright of our lives, Air France said there were no tickets for us, then we definately had some economy tickets and after much negotiating they eventually put us in first class, very cool.
Thanks for all your messages while we were away, as we were so busy we couldn't reply much but we have arrived home safely now and look forward to catching up with you all very soon.
PS: So far no jet lag either way (Phew)
Cheers, Rick and Syl.
Location: Paris, France
In the morning we met Chris & Racheal at the Eiffel Tower for our trek up, we only walked halfway and caught the elevator to the top, what a view, it is 324 metre high and we took a photo with Syl in her Divas netball shirt as promised. Bought tickets for the open top buses to get around Paris and drive past lots of sights to get our bearings.
Another lunch with beer and wine, yum
Saturday night was another great dinner followed by the Moulin Rouge and home by 2am
Location: Zagreb / Paris, Croatia
Waited at Zagreb airport from 5am till our flight at 1 pm and finally arrived at our hotel in Paris at 5.30pm. Hotel was in great position metres from the Champs Elysees. Went to a local restaurant that night and the food was fantastic.
Over the two days we also saw the Arc de Triomphe, The Notre Dame, La Madeleine, Pantheon, the Louvre and a cruise on the river Siene, plus the girls shopped on the Champs Elysees.
Location: Duga Resa, Croatia
Made an early start to get here as it is where Sylvia's dad was born, a step back in time as the place where her dad was born still stands and belongs to her if she wanted to claim it.
The whole area is full of her relatives who have lived there all their lives, all three way streets have crosses in the middle to ward off witches.
We were able to visit the graves of Syl's dad's brothers who were shot while he watched from the woods during WW2, the history and the way everything is almost exactly the same made for a very emotional day especially for Syl.
We had a great lunch with her cousin Josip and his family (they were so freindly although they don't speak english and i don't speak croation) who had shown us around and we were going to stay the night with them but unfortunately ther was a mix up with our flights so we had to go to Zagreb that night to sort things out.
Location: Opatija, Croatia
A nice drive up the coast brought us to Opatija, a popular tourist spot although not as pretty as Mosciencia Draga, stayed in a nice hotel and walked the beachfront with more beer, wine and local cuisine for lunch.
Strange entertainment in Croatia, this time it was a big bunch of people dressing up and lip syncing everything from Whitney Houston to Phantom of the opera.
Finished at 1 am as everyone avoides the heat and comes out from 9pm.
Location: Pula/ Mosiencia Draga, Croatia
Got our hire car now and working out driving on the other side of the road, takes a bit of getting used to but it's ok when you do it for a while.
Checked out the local streets for shopping and beleive it or not we had lunch at macccas. went to the ampitheatre and the forum which were built 1st century AD and also went to hercules gate, very cool.
That afternoon took off for Mosciencia Draga, an absolutely hidden gem of a fishing village, we stayed in a little hotel right on the beach.
Strolled the beach and had a swim followed by a little shopping and got cleaned up to have beer and pizza on the beach and watch the sun go down, fantastic.
Back to the room for a glass of red to listen to the live music from below, this guy was an elvis fan with a good voice except the king's songs sound different with an accent. He finally finished about twelve so we could get some sleep.
Location: Pula, Croatia
Left Venice today on a bus for Pula, took every back street across 2 borders, 5 hr bus trip you could have driven in 2 hrs, great scenery though.
6pm checked into the Riviera hotel, 6.15pm checked out. Wanted to stay in an old hotel but it was crap, no aircon, really old and dirty.
Have a hire car now so will be exploring on our own, wish us luck.
Location: Venice, Italy
Sailing into Venice was different to all other harbours as we arrived at midday, a very busy port with water taxis, pleasure boats and gondolas all over the place. We had a fantastic veiw from the balcony of our ship (we are on the 8th level).
We caught the first water shuttle and were in Venice before the crowds got too big, went to Doges palace whch is very spectacular with ornate ceilings dating back 6 century's. Only got to see the out side of t Marks Basillica as it was closed, but it is still an incredible building from the outside and the sqaure where it stands is packed with people and pidgeons.
Walked the back streets where you cross all the small canals while Syl stopped and gawked at all the fashion, jewellery etc, they have some great stuff we don' get back home but it' all over priced and if i wore the guy fashion and i would get beaten up for being a poof!
After lunch in a nice little ristorante ( with beer and wine again of course) we headed off for our gondola ride, down lots of little canals out into the grand canal and under the Rialto bridge (where we had a kiss and made a wish as is the tradition) all very romantic and a great veiw, as you travel under the bridges people take your photograph by the hundreds. Went past Casanovas place as we made our way back, the Gondolas are beautiful and pricy but worth it.
Location: Dubrovnik, Croatia
Dubrovnic has a lovely harbour and quite clean compared to Athens. We went to the "Old Town " which is a walled fort town built in 1468 walked the Wall which took an hour and had lunch at a restaurant in a little cove. After lunch we walked to the local beach where we sat and had a beer and a cocktail at a fantastic bar on the beach as we took in the local sights (men in speedos and topless girls).Took the shuttle bus back to the ship.
Location: AT Sea Adriatic Ocean, Europe
Today we are relaxing .
Location: Piraeus Athens, Greece
We booked a tour of athens and a 1 1/2 drive to Cape Sounion.Had a guided tour of the Acropolis.All this area is undergoing renovations so there was a lot of scaffolding around the monuments.Still quite spectacular.
I must say Athens is not very impressive.It had a lot of litter and pollution everywhere and the stadiums built for the 2000 olympic games looked deserted and unkept There was rubbish everywhere and Gypsies living in the car parks.
Driving to Cape Sounion was relaxing.Had lunch at a hotel resort with lovely ocean views. Moussaka,Veal and cake with a local beer.YUM,YUM.(Its all about the food for me and the beer for Rick.)
At the top of Cape Sounion the 5th ccentury B.C Temple of Poseidon stands The view is Spectacular
Drove back to Athens then onto the ship.
Most nights we are seated with the same people.They are all a lot of fun.
Location: SANTORINI, Greece
Santorini Arrival 7.00 am. 7.30 am we embark on an old sailing vessel and motor to the crater of an active volcano climb up the crater.We then walk back down and borad the sailing boat and head for the warm springs.Jump off the boat into the ocean and swim to warm bubbling springs.
After our swim we motored back to Santorini where we took a Donkey ride up to Fira.IRicks donkey took off and started biting him. Lots of fun. It was kaos as people were trying to come down the mountain and donkeys out of control.
Once we reached the top we got our bearings then caught the bus to IOR .When we got there we walked the streets .This is where the white washed houses with blue domed roofs are."Picture perfect" Lunch was rissotto with wild mushrooms and truffles,local beer and red wine.Overlooking the bay.Cant get any better.
After lunch caught the bus back to Fira then cable car to the Millenium (boat)
It was Greek night on the ship.I was so exhausted I fell asleep in the cabin and missed the legendary Santorini sunset.Rick was partying.
Oh well I'll have to come back just to see the sunset.
Location: at sea, Italy
Hi everyone hope you are all well!Today we are at Sea.Havent even seen the whole boat yet it is enormous.Relax day for us as you know weve been working so hard!
Location: Amalfi Coast, Italy
Happy Birthday to the" son I left behind"
Hi guys and girls,What can I say.
We have been having the most superb weather and I have not stopped eating yet.
Today we docked in Naples.We hired a Driver and shared the fare with a Canadian couple.
Pompeii was first on our agenda. It was very fascinating and didn't realise what a large escavation it was. Spent an hour and a half there, you really needed four hours.
Next we drove the winding roads with Gino our "racing car driver."No road rules here and lots of honking of horns.
Sorrento was lovely and busy streets.Saw Rupert Murdocs ship anchored in the bay.
Had lunch at a beautiful town named Ravello. WOW what a view.
Saw a music museum which was very old and had glorious gardens.Also saw a beautiful church.This was a very special place.
Rick has now been to three churches.Two while there were services on. A converted catholic LOL
Gino our driver was fantastic and he got us back to the ship in one piece.
Rest day at sea tommorrow will be bathing by the pool in the Mediteranian sun.
(PS will wear DIVA shirt sometime tomorrow in support of my team.)
Have had trouble posting photos hopefully by tommorrow will be sorted out
Ciao Syl and Rick
Location: Rome, Italy
We did Rome on our own today, just walked off the ship and caught the train (1 hour trip) now that's an experience in a country where you don't speak the language.
Did all the big things flat out with no lunch, 5hrs in Rome seeing The Vatican, The Spanish steps, The Pantheon, The Forum and the Colleseum plus others i can't remember right now.
It was absolutely better than i could imagine, photos can't do justice to those places.
Getting back by train from a different station proved difficult as every italian we spoke to told us go 5 minutes this way and it was always twenty minutes and the wrong direction but we got back 15 mins before the ship left, phew!
Tommorrow it's the Amalfi coast.
Location: Florence, Italy
Hi all, today was the day for the leaning tower of Pisa and Florence.
The leaning tower reallly does lean and is a court yard with a beautiful church however it is really strange the way they treat the area around such a monument.
The whole place is like a flea market plus there are africans everywhere selling fake Gucci, D&G bags and belts etc and they just have a white sheet on the ground and when the cops come they just grab it up in a bundle and walk off and the cops can't touch them if they are not displaying the merchandise.
Florence has great shopping plus the Satue of David, the ponte Vecchio bridge and countless magnificent churches and buildings.
Tommorow its Rome
Location: ville-franche, France
Hi everyone, not sure if many of our emails got through the first time as the ship internet is a bit dodgy.
I will go to an internet cafe tommorow to place some pics for you to see just how great it is here.
Today we went to Ville-franche and walked 1400 year old cobblestone streets.
Then it was off to Eze for lunch on the cliff, 500 metres straight up from the ocean. From there we went to Monaco and Monte Carlo, not that special really just every second person drives a Ferrari and it has the dearest land in the world, sixty million for a 1000sqm block and you never have to pay tax again!
Really tired now after a 12 hour day so i'm going to have a beer and some dinner.
Luv Rick & Syl
Location: At Sea, France
we are currently enjoying a relaxing day at sea after 3 flights 2 bus transfers and 32hrs travel in total. Flights were good and we managed to get about 6 hrs sleep on the Singapore to Paris leg (Never thought i could sleep on a plane).
Flying into Barcelona was amazing, a dense city in the hills right on the ocean. After checking into the boat we shared a cab with some americans into town and went to Las Rambla.
There were small laneways everwhere with shops and hole in the wall bars, just an 8ft opening with a couple of stools on the street for you to drink at. We went into a bar that was 200yrs old and had sangria, they cook everything without electricity (all wood fired) The local markets were incredible with the freshest vegetables, seafood and meat you have ever seen, they also have these sqaure bars with stools all the way around, i could do the grocery shopping here myself!
Our ship is called Millenium and its incredible with bars, nightclubs and casinos. Seems to be a lot of bars everywhere so maybe thats why i like Europe, we have had champagne and beers all the time but sometimes i realise with the time zones we are drinking at 6am (Oh well).
The weather for our first day at sea has to be seen to be beleived, the whole area is glassed out, Sylvia is Shopping and i am off to the casino.
Luv Rick & Syl