Articles By Tag: travel


Voyage of a Lifetime 40—Madrid, Spain

By @EsteeKessler |

Our final port of call as tourists was Cadiz, the primary port city en route to our scheduled tour of Seville. Cadiz today is somewhat shopworn, but in its heyday was wealthier than London. With verifiable archeological evidence to show Cadiz the oldest continuously inhabited city in Western Europe. Settled by the P...

Europe travel


Voyage of a Lifetime 39—Barcelona, Spain (Catalonia)

By @EsteeKessler |

What would your reaction be if you were a non-English speaker on your first visit to New York and you found none of the street signs in the language you’d learned? Say in Dutch or Finish? This was my reaction as we drove through Barcelona and found the billboards and street signs not in Spanish. But rather wha...

Europe travel


Voyage of a Lifetime 38—Rome

By @EsteeKessler |

All roads lead to Rome, and, as with most cruise ship ports, the road is long and slow. We set off for the Imperial City from the Port of Civitavecchia, over 60 kilometers northwest of the capital. The subsequent drive through Civitavecchia struck me as a tour of time with 17th and 18th-century warehouses--not in th...

Europe travel


Voyage of a Lifetime 37-Naples - Pompeii

By @EsteeKessler |

Anchoring off Sorrento and tendering into this once Greek city offered our group bonus points in the landscape category. Originally the plan called for berthing in Naples followed by a coach tour of the ancient resort city for Roman one percenters, but the change, a result of delayed harbor dredging, meant we enjoye...

Europe travel


Voyage of a Lifetime 36—Suez-Cypress

By @EsteeKessler |

When we sailed from Aqaba, we would not make landfall again until Cyprus, a two-day voyage. Day one was not like any other. Why? Why did this cruise differ from any other? Because the waterway was not open sea, but the walls of what may be the world’s oldest canal: the Suez Canal of Egypt. The rulers of this a...

Middle East travel tropics


Voyage of a Lifetime 35—Petra…Jordan

By @EsteeKessler |

Most authors think the setting is important, perhaps the most important, element in a novel. If they are right, I was in for a disappointment when I reached one of the top ten in my lifetime bucket list, Petra. When our bus left the ship and headed out of Aqaba to the highway, we encountered several lightly po...

Middle East travel tropics


Voyage of a Lifetime 34—Dubai UAI

By @EsteeKessler |

Dubai is a tale of two cities, living jointly and singly. If you can imagine a community designed as a shared project between an eighteen-century city planner and George Lucas of Star Wars family and Mickey of Disney fame as project supervisor, you’d have Dubai. Consider this: less than 20% of the population is...

Middle East travel tropics


Voyage of a Lifetime 33—Oman

By @EsteeKessler |

When I glanced out my window at the port of Muscat in Oman, I thought I was looking at a brown Santa Fe. The community of low-rise blocky buildings loops along the beaches of the Strait of Hormuz with additional fingers of townhouses and commercial structures snaking between the rock upcroppings. The horizon reminde...

Middle East travel tropics


Voyage of a Lifetime 32—Cochin, Kerala, India

By @EsteeKessler |

Our sweaty group of visitors returned to the mothership with smile and flower-bedecked. In an exploration during which we encountered memorable sites, this day stands out. One member said, “I think Kochi was the best day yet.” Our arrival did not seem auspicious. A strong windstorm the night bef...

Asia travel tropics


Voyage of a Lifetime 31—Sri Lanka

By @EsteeKessler |

Despite the Ceylon Tea commercials showing a beautiful woman in traditional dress picking tea, the reality of this peninsular country contains far fewer placid moments than the ad would imply. In recent times, two major events have inflicted damage on the country and its people. In 2004, Sri Lanka shared the 2004 Bo...

Asia travel tropics


Voyage of a Lifetime 30—Phuket

By @EsteeKessler |

My mental file on the Thai city of Phuket held only three facts. The climate is hot and humid (which proved more than true); the beach was a magnet for sun and surfing beach lovers (also true), and a tsunami wiped out hundreds (Boxing day 2003 and the total lost was in the thousands). Phuket the city and the island...

Asia travel tropics



Voyage of a Lifetime 28 Nha Trang, Vietnam

By @EsteeKessler |

When we tendered into Nha Trang, one of the most popular resort destination of Asia, my initial impression was that of a small beach town. Our course shifted slightly and Miami Beach appeared. Nha Trang is a tale of two towns—one a fishing village with an extraordinary length of beach, the other a high-ri...

Asia travel tropics


Voyage of a Lifetime 27—Hong Kong

By @EsteeKessler |

We in the US see ourselves as living in a melting pot. Hong Kong is more of a lasagna. The bottom layer represents the first four thousand or so years of the area’s history. A spunky sauce covers the next layer with the Imperial Chinese Kingdom, which held the island was part of its territory. At the beginning of the...

Asia island travel


Voyage of a Lifetime 26—Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon)

By @EsteeKessler |

For a country where the most common religion of the citizens is none, Ho Chi Minh City has a plethora of temples ranging from Buddhist to Christian to Tao/Confucianism to a tourist-oriented mixture of all of the above. Waters of the Saigon River flow through the city along with thousands of bicycles and scooters with over t...

Asia travel tropics