After a day of sailing, which included a very relaxing day of checking out the ship, eating way too much, and attending high tea, our next port of call was in Sicily. We pulled into Trapani on Thursday morning to a party cloudy day. Our morning was filled with a scheduled excursion out beyond Trapani though, to the mountain town of Erice. Erice fascinated me because of both it’s mountain views and the way in which this little town has seemingly been preserved for centuries, all the while still functioning as a home to locals.
I knew Erice would satisfy my desire to see the old ways of life in Sicily, but I wasn’t so sure about how it would be for photography. Turns out, I needn’t have worried. There was plenty to see up there.
After spending the morning exploring Valldemossa, I had a couple of hours left to wander around Palma before it was time to board the ship. Our tour bus driver was kind enough to make a stop right at the Cathedral before heading back to the ship, and since the Cathedral was the one thing I most wanted to see, I took advantage of that!
The next port on our grand adventure was Palma de Majorca Spain, but before I could set about exploring Palma, I had scheduled a half-day excursion up into the Tramuntana mountains to visit the village of Valldemossa.
She’s sharing her own photos and insights from our recent vacation over on her own blog. You can tell from her description of Valencia which one of us is more familiar with the travel industry. 😉
You can check out all of her posts as she gets them updated in the Treasures of the Ancients category, that was Oceania’s name for the cruise.
Our first port of call after leaving Barcelona was Valencia, Spain. The wife and I decided not to do any of the excursions from Valencia, choosing instead to just take the shuttle bus from the port into the center of town and then walk around on our own all day. Naturally, we had done some research and she had a map with points of interest we wanted to see already marked on it. (One of the bonuses of being married to a travel/event planner!)
First on our list was the Valencia Cathedral, which lays claim to being home to the Holy Grail. Is it really? Who knows, but even Wikipedia gives it the best shot of being the true grail of all the places that claim to have it. Any way you look at it, the Cathedral is still a beautiful place to visit, and also happens to be home to a couple of paintings by Goya, which ain’t too shabby.
Unfortunately, since Barcelona was our departing port for our cruise, we didn’t really get to see much of the city itself. What we did see was either from the back seat of a taxi, or from the deck of the ship in port.
However, the lovely weather, great sunset and night time lights did provide a few chances to grab some photos from the ship.
You can see the small set of photos from this stop over on Flickr. Barcelona is definitely a place I want to go back to, based on what little I’ve seen so far of it. Much more to come over the next few days, but I do have about 1700 photos to weed through first… 😉