Madeira was a very beautiful island. Lots of flowers. We rode the cable car to the top which was 30e for the 2 of us. We had a wonderful view from the top. We walked around some and watched some people take a toboggan ride down a steep street. The ship had a shuttle bus which was $11 per person. Some people walked into town or took a private tour in a taxi. Others took an orgnaized tour. We were disappointed it was a Sunday and almost no shops were open.
We broke our rule here of not taking a tour off the ship. We had been to Paris several times but wanted to go to the Beaches of Normandy. We booked this tour on the ship at a cost of $179 each. We got up at 6 since the tour left at 8:30. There were 3 bus loads on this tour. We were on the 1st bus. We were spaced out so we all weren't at the same place at the same time. It was a 2 hour bus ride to our 1st stop which was Pointe du hoc. Our tour guide spoke excellent English. He spoke for the 1st hour of the tour about the history of the Normandy invasion. Very interesting. Our next stop was Omaha Beach. We only stopped for about 30 minutes to make pictures. We would have liked to stay here longer. Our next stop was the American Cemetary. Our tour guide did an excellent job of telling us about all these places. He answered questions and was very knowlegable about all our stops. Our last stop was in Caen at a museum. We had an excellent lunch here which was included in the tour price. Wine was also served. We spent about 2 hours here and got back to the ship at 6:30. This was the best tour, we have taken off a ship.
We were not in port long enough to do anything here. We docked at 9 and left at 3. We walked into town. It was a long walk. It was cold and started to rain so we went back to the ship. We had originally planned to take the train to Canterbury but didn't have enough time.
We elected to carry our bags and walk off the ship. We had been to Amsterdam before so we took the train to Germany for a few days before flying home. We walked from the ship to the train station. It as about a 20 minute walk with our luggage.