Piraeus, (Athens), Greece Nov 19, 2016

We have been in Athens before a few times, once on a bus tour, we chartered a sailboat from here and a couple of times of a cruise ship.  To me Greece has its beauty in the water and the islands not the big city of Athens, yes of course you have to see the Acropolis while you are here, visit the Plaka(shopping district) but basically Athens is just a big smoggy city. Piraeus is the port city to Athens and has gotten so built up over the years we have been coming, it just seems like it part of the city now.  we were going to take a hop on Hop off bus but instead decided to take a little train that takes us around Piraeus, we were the only passengers, haha. we were hoping to find the area we had chartered out of here about 20 years ago but the harbor has grown so much.

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Katakolon, Greece Nov 18, 2016

This is the port city to Olympia, the birthplace of the Olympic games in 776 B.C. We have to Olympia already and also this port once before so just stayed in town. Somewhere along the line I caught a head cold and am feeling pretty bad, glad they have a pharmacy here, bought some pills have no idea what is in them as it is all in Greek but the women behind the counter told me this what I wanted, hope she is right. we went into a couple of shops but I am feeling pretty bad so we just stopped for a coffee, got a little internet and then I needed to head back to the ship to go back to bed, and it is too bad cause this is a cute little port with a lot of little shops and  nice restaurants. we stopped at one where the waiter was originally from Chicago, moved to Greece a few years ago and has not regretted it one single day.  sorry I have no pictures to post.

I got back to the ship and slept the day away, hope this goes away soon, tomorrow Pireaus.

Kerkira, Corfu, Greece Nov 17, 2016

Corfu, what a delightful place,after such a contrast after the bustling city  of Naples in our last port. Corfu is the second largest Greek island and lies in the Ionian Sea. the old town is a UNESCO world heritage site with its narrow cobblestone streets. we enjoyed exploring this city along with the old fort which at one time housed the entire population back in the 1500’s.  We did a little shopping, Kelly bought a really nice greek fisherman’s cap, stopped to enjoy a café in one of the many coffee shops lining the streets. We toured the fort, climbed all the way to the top for some stunning views, then walked the couple of miles back to the ship along the waterfront lined with all the traditional Greek fishing boats. After all of our walking we found a couple of very comfortable chairs up in the Crow’s Nest ordered a couple of well deserved  drinks and awaited our sailaway  from Corfu.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Naples, Italy Nov 15, 2016

Another big city that we have been to before, Kelly elected to just stay on the ship, so off I went by myself. once you get out of the terminal there are taxis and tour companies wanting to take you anywhere you want to go. I elected to take the hop on hop off bus , as this seemed like a safe choice seeing as I was by myself. seeing as I had been here before I elected to take the route that took me along the shore and out of town a bit. But first we had to get out of the city, looking down at all the traffic and watching the motorbikes weave in and out of the traffic is quite nerve wracking, I do not know how some of them make it through with just inches between them and the cars.

it was a nice ride up into the hills with nice views of Capri and Mt Vesuvius.

On the walk back to the ship there all hawkers all around trying to sell you Gucci purses for $10, they have them laid out on a blanket and if they see a police officer anywhere in view they just fold up their blankets and move along so innocently. haha

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Citvitavecchia, Italy Nov 14, 2016

Here we are in Citvitavecchia, the port city to Rome.  we have already been to Rome a couple of times, boy this is starting to sound like a broken record, so we stayed in the port.  Nothing much to say here, they have an open / flea market which we walked through but didn’t buy anything. we wanted to stop and have some vino, so found a place called Gigi’s , we thought that was an omen we should stop there as “GiGi” is what we used to call my mom. we had some really good red wine at a resonable price, plus we were on the main drag and saw and talked to a lot of our fellow shipmates who passed by.

 

 

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Livorno, Italy Nov 13, 2016

This is our first time to this port, which is the port city to Florence and Pisa, now seeing as we have already ben to those two  cities we decide to explore Livorno. The port provided a shuttle into the city center which was fine  except  there was a marathon being run in the town at the time we took the shuttleand the road the shuttle was to take was closed off, lots of very unhappy passengers, but hey this is what happens when you travel you need to be flexible. Unfortunately a lot of our fellow passengers do not feel this way and starting showing their ugly American side. Fortunately there was a local tour guide on the bus with us and she walked all us who were able into town.  In the city center square they were having a dance contest and we sat and watched while they danced the tango, samba and a couple of other dances.  it is Sunday and the streets are quite busy everyone out for a walk or shopping, off we go to explore, we had planned to lunch in a restaurant that had built in the 1930’s which was suppose to have great food.  as we got further and further into the city we became a little disoriented as to where we were good thing Kelly has compass on his phone and knew which way we needed to head. on the way we came across an open air market that was nothing but chocolate vendors, in every shape, flavor you can imagine, we bought a few pieces, it was quite good.  Then we ran across a house that had a huge statue spiderman on their roof, I would love to know the story behind that. We finally came upon the restaurant we were looking for but they were packed , if you had no reservations you could not get in,  oh well we found another local pizzeria and some local red wine and a pizza. All in all it was a great day.

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Alicante, Spain Nov, 9 2016

Kelly and I are exhausted today we were up all night last night watching the election results, we are 6 hours ahead of EST so the Florida polls did not close until 2:00a.m. here then add on California polls and you can see why we were up all night.  I will refrain from any political comments, all that know me know my political affiliation and I remained true to my party.

We arrived in Alicante a little later than some of our ports, 10:00 a.m. so at least that helped we did not have to rush in the morning to get off.  my first impressions of this seaside village is wealth, there is a huge marina filled with lots of impressive yachts.  There is a great esplanade for walking here that is lined with 6.5 million marble floor tiles in a design to represent waves. yes that was not a typo I did mean millions!

we enjoyed just waking around taking in the local culture, charming little place, we stopped at a café along the esplanade to have some sangria and tapas(small plates) of tuna and roasted peppers and chorizos. of course we were approached by all the street vendors wanted to sell us bracelets, carvings, dance for us , etc. but once you say no they go away, they are not aggressive. 

tomorrow the big city of Barcelona where we will overnight…..

 

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