It was in 1961 and in 1973 that we had sailed transatlantic, aboard the Augustus & the Christophero Columbus, both from the italian line Italmar. We had also done Lisbon to Southhampton aboard the Eagle. But after almost 40 years this was to be a complete new experience. And it proved to be an excellent one!
Safety was top priority and we had to take part in the exercises immediately after boarding in Venice, and then right after leaving Rio de Janeiro. Our inside stateroom was very comfortable, nothing was missing, the air conditioning, TV, hair dryer functioned very well. Food was mesmerizing, so many gourmet choices that on the 2nd day I restricted myself to seafood, salad & fruit, which combined with daily walking, swimming, bridge & books formed the basis of our existence. mixed with some of the theatre & dancing options, all of them top quality. Customer service was outstanding everywhere, as well as organization and punctuality.
From about 100 different More
entertainment programs we found only 2 that were below average, a pretended Chopin pianist who performed several times in one of the big theaters, and a "flamenco" couple who danced anything but flamenco, let alone the inadequate music they were dancing to.
Finally, the internet connection was expensive and very slow, so frustrating that I had to go to an Internet Cafe in most of the ports we touched -I am being told Internet is a common failure in most cruises-.
My wife and I, and the other couple travelling together in a similar cabin, were very happy overall, rating this cruise 99 over 100. Less
Our first time also here. I had crossed this strait several times by boat but I could never appreciate so well both shores at the same time -Afrika and Europe-, so close to each other, and so beautiful, allowing you to better understand Muslim migration nowadays.
Gibraltar looks like a very nice extension of the UK, we walked and we walked, window shopping most of the time, bought the Daily Telegraph...
I couldn't enter the real Port 6, which was Recife in NE Brazil, I didn;t find that option. It was my first time in Recife, nice but nothing special.
Rio de Janeiro was really our 7th port, always beautiful, but we have been there so many times that my wife opted to stay aboard. It was a very hot morning and I disembarked just to walk a bit and buy some medicine for my ear aching badly after so much swimming.
very interesting experience. Mixing with the crowd in the old town, talking with some of them in french, so happy and hopeful with their new political situation! Women moving very independently without bourkas or so. And when we visited Cartago ruins there was Hannibal waiting for us...