Pharaohs and Promised Land April 2011: Thomson Celebration Cruise Review by Duston Poppy
Overall Member Rating
Pharaohs and Promised Land April 2011
Destination: Europe - Eastern Mediterranean
THe ship is a little old but is very clean and well maintained. The staff are excellent especially the waiters and room staff for whom nothing is to much trouble.
Our children enjoyed the Kidzone and made new friends. They could not wait to go to the next session and were really disapointed when they missed out due to us going on trips.
The shows are of a good standard and varied. I personally did not like the UK comedian whose entire show was built around the theme of being drunk- a little to low brow for my liking but others certainly enjoyed him.
My only negative comments are that the food did not seem as varied as we had tasted on the Spirit last year. Don't get me wrong its still good but not as More good.Also there were a few problems with the toilet packing up.But these were soon fixed.
The ports other than Alanya(Turkey) are all industrial. You can't really go far if you get off. You either take a trip or sit in the port watching ships load and unload.
Overall we had a great time and would think about going back sometime to visit some of the places we missed out on. Less
Cabin review: 504
Port and Shore Excursions
We then had lunch on a Nile cruiser. Lunch was a hot buffet and very nice.We were treated to belly dancing and a cruise up and down the Nile for about an hour.
Then we made our way to the Pyramids. They are awesome but are sadly ruined by the large army or rude locals who try to peddle their wares but won't take no for an answer. You say no thank you and they just keep going to the point that when you get to the next pyramid you don't want to get off the coach because you know whats coming up.This trip also included the Sphinx. You could pay an extra 6 pounds to go inside the smaller pyramid but the tunnel it is only about 3ft high and only wide enough for one to enter.
We had a guide who was very informative and pro Israeli. He told us all about how the world misunderstood the occupation of Gaza.The trip to Jerusalem was just under two hours but I was struck by what a beautiful country Isreal is compared to Israel-quite green and ful of trees and crops.
We went to the Mount of Olives and then onto the garden of Gethsemane and the Church of all Nations. We then Followed the route Jesus took to Calvary walking up the stations of the cross until we arrived at The Church of the Holy Sepulcher.Even if you a not a great believer you cannot help but be moved by the whole experience.
We then went to the Wailing-Western Wall where we put prayers into the cracks. You must cover your heads to enter the area and we were provided with small caps free of charge .
We then got back on the coach and past through the Palestinian border and took the 5 mile trip to Bethlehem where we had a nice lunch in a hotel. We were then taken to a Christian shop that sold many souvenirs mainly made of olive wood produced locally by a co-operative of the few remaining Christian families left in Bethlehem.We were taken to Manger Square and went into the Church of the Nativity.These are places you see on television and seem a world away but we had the privilege to encounter them trouble free. The trips are on the expensive side about £80 per adult but when you consider all you get to see they are well worth it.
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