A Travellerspoint blog

By this Author: JimShirl


semi-overcast 23 °C
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I haven’t posted anything for almost a week.

After our day in Barcelona we went to a laundromat and then directly to the ship. Boarding was very smoothly handled.

The first day out we were in Cartagena, a picturesque city very much into its ancient Carthaginian and Roman history. We just strolled around the old town.

The next day was Malaga, a bigger and flashier city on the Costa del Sol. Once again, we just strolled around. We went into the cathedral and, since it was Sunday morning, mass was being celebrated.

The next day we arrived at Lisbon in the late afternoon. The next morning we took a wine and scenery tour to the José Maria de Fonseca winery, famous for its Muscatel and many other wines.


The scenic part of the tour took us through a national park and then back to Lisbon.


we sailed away from Lisbon that evening. We’re not going to Ponta del Gada in the Azores because hurricane Lorenzo has just passed by and left eight meter swells in its wake so the captain has taken us further south where the swells are only three meters or so giving us a lovely pitch and roll which we are enjoying today on deck in balmy weather.

This will be the last post in this blog. We call at Nassau on Oct 9 and debark and fly home on Oct 10. See many of you then.

Posted by JimShirl 08:19 Archived in Spain Comments (0)


sunny 27 °C
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This was our big day in Barcelona.

We walked from our hotel ten blocks to the basilica of Sagrada Familia, having pastry and coffee for breakfast along the way. SF is still under construction though the interior is finished. What a beautiful building it is.


There are three exterior facades: Nativity




and Glory, but this last side is currently hidden from view behind construction hoardings.

Inside it is like a forest of pillars with tops branching into arches like trees. The pillars are made of different materials to further suggest a mixed forest.


and the windows let in beautifully coloured light.


This is still my favourite building in the world.

After we left SF, we took a city bus down to the famous pedestrian street, La Rambla and walked halfway down before we were accosted by a sidewalk tout who invited us into a restaurant where we had the most delicious seafood paella and sangria lunch. Then we walked on to Santa Maria del Mar, an old church near the harbour.


After this we were pretty tuckered and couldn’t figure out how to get back to the hotel by public transit, so we hailed a cab and here I am writing this before having a wee nap before supper.

Posted by JimShirl 07:28 Archived in Spain Comments (0)

Jerusalem to Barcelona

semi-overcast 25 °C
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Got up at 3:50 to catch the shuttle to the airport. The driver was the Basil Fawlty of drivers, incredibly rude. Anyway, we got there on time did the obligatory multiple airport lineups and caught our flight. Then at Barcelona there were more lineups. I figure we spent as much time lining up as we did flying.

But we’re snug in our hotel just a few minutes away from Sagrada Familia Basilca when is the main thing we wanted to see here.

Posted by JimShirl 07:56 Archived in Spain Comments (0)

Jerusalem Day Off

sunny 27 °C
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If you read yesterday’s entry you may understand why we took today off. Shirley also had a bad stomach which made the prospect of walking even less attractive. So we visited the shops next to the hotel, had a light lunch , napped and lounged by the pool.


Posted by JimShirl 07:50 Archived in Israel Comments (0)


sunny 26 °C
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What a full day.

We started early at the Garden Tomb. This is a place where many people believe the crucifixion and burial took place since it was put forward as a possibility about 150 years ago. It is beautifully kept and the guide there more preached than guided and it was lovely.


Then we went to the top of he Mount of Olives for a panoramic view of old Jerusalem.


Down at the bottom of the slope is the Garden of Gethsemane.


On to the Wailing Wall. As it was a Monday, several Bar Mitzvahs were taking place we said prayers there and left a written prayer for our family in a crevice between the stones.


The we walked into the old city, passing some of the Stations of the Crosson our way to lunch.


After lunch we walked to the Church of the Sepulchre, the place that has been held for centuries to be where Jesus was crucified, buried and raised. It is a church of crusader times and occupied by six different Christian churches who are famously unable to get along well. In the 1890s one of the priests put up a ladder above the front door to do something. But the others objected when they saw him and made him come down immediately. But then they could not agree who should go up to bring the ladder down, and it is still there today. We went in but the line to see the sepulchre was at least two hours long so we didn’t see it.


Then we walked along to see the rebuilt upper room of the last supper. It was just a rather large unremarkable room. It is located immediately above the Tomb of David.


Finally we walked on to the location of the house of Caiaphas where Jesus was taken after his arrest. There is a large Church of the Denial built above it today.


This was the end of a very long day and the final day of our Israeli tour. We had dinner with our group and fell fast asleep.

Posted by JimShirl 10:12 Archived in Israel Comments (0)

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