Sunday, 11 November 2012

Italia Part 2 and Back to Spain

"Italia Part 2 and  back to Spain" We arrived back to the port of Civitavecchia on Oct 31st in the pouring rain. Two hump backs in rain ponchos trying to book our next movement north in Italy so we could hike Cinque Terra. ( five villages). All advice to us pointed to a train to Genoa to start. This turned out to be a mistake because we over shot the villages by 1/2,hour on the fast train and ended up having to go back the next day with the many stops, metro train for two hours! We did get a room for two nights in Genoa and enjoyed sightseeing there so it was not all bad.  Our full day trip to  Cinque Terra was not what we planned but enjoyed it just the same.There is a lot of trail damage due to a huge mud slide last year so we could not walk from village to village. We hopped on the metro train to get to each village but still had lots of  exercise just climbing through these towns. The day was cool and windy while we were there (Nov. 1 ), but it is easy to see what a charming place this would be to visit and hike in the summer. Our pictures show crashing waves with all boats up in the streets.  We had an evening train from Genoa to Milan on Nov. 2nd and another overnight train from Genoa to Barcelona.  On this last half day in Genoa  we saw more beautiful churches and the childhood home of Christopher Columbus. This time on our red eye train trip we had comfortable reclining seats on our overnight train ride but our sleep was interrupted with a police bust on two stow-aways plus interrogation of a few others. When they collect your tickets they take your passports too; so have time to have a good look.   Never a dull moment for the traveling Capers; good thing we had nothing to hide. :-) We arrived in Barcelona in the morning and walked the streets with our now very heavy packs ( remember the extra clothes for cruising) searching for beds . It was Saturday and many hotels were full. We ended up taking a hostel for three nights. This was a cheap option again and served to sharpen our anticipation of returning to the comfort of a cruise ship. We had a very nice 3 days in Barcelona. You could easily spend a full week there.  On our first full day Lori did the Gaudi sites that I had done in 2010 and I went to Montserrat. On the second day we did more Gaudi sites and a lot of city walking. On our last half day Lori did the Picasso Museum and I went to ParJuiic; collected our bags back at the hostel and treated ourselves to a rare taxi ride to the ship.  Well worth it now that we are lugging heavy packs plus hand bags. We are off to our transatlantic crossing now with 5 ports of call on Carnival, Breeze. This is the ship's inaugural crossing. We are hoping for calm weather. As I post this on Nov. 11th we are in  Las Palmas, Canary Islands. So far so good with the cruise. We are adjusting better to the cruise lifestyle. This ship is loaded with options for entertainment, exercise and relaxation so we will have a very nice grand finale to the big adventure.  Next post will be about the cruise and it's 5 ports of call.

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