Atlantic Crossing Cruise – Port Excursions

Obviously a large part of an Atlantic Crossing is sea days, and we had plenty of them. Including six in a row at the end of the cruise until we reached Ft. Lauderdale. But we did have some great port stops through the first eight days of the cruise, and really only one port Leslie and I didn’t like.

A list of greeting type events for suite guest also serves as a written reminder of our itinerary. We actually only went to one of the events as we preferred to meet our friends at a bar for evening cocktails.

Cartagena – Our first stop is a beautiful town on the southern coast of Spain. The bus tour Leslie and I took had us visiting some really nice old areas of teh city and included some much needed long walks and hills climbs. While the guide was fine, the group was too large and there were other groups where ever we went. One of the last bus stops was for shopping a relatively short distance form the ship so we just walked back a little early.

A view of the valley from high of a hill in Cartagena
The tower in the forefront is meant to give a closer view of the old bull fighting ring.

Malaga – Our second stop was another port town on the southern coast of Spain. Similar to Cartagena really if you stay in the port area. Our friends Darrell and Nancy arranged for a private tour of the inland towns up in the hills named the “White Towns”. Our main stop was in Mejas which was so charming Leslie expressed a desire to move there. All of the buildings in the town are white, and if there is any accents it is in green or red flower boxes planted with green or red flowers. Also many of the private homes have attached gardens as big or bigger than the house itself. Residential and commercial areas are not separated and many buildings house both. And while the town was certainly beautiful and beyond charming, the people were also very happy to have us there and gracious in their hospitality.

One of the “White towns” outside of Malaga
Leslie and Scott at one of the home gardens we were invited in to see.
Down one of the Mejas side streets with lots of flower boxes on the outside walls
Leslie likes to take pictures of the man hole covers in Europe as they all have the name of the town on them. In this case the Mijas is upside down in the photo and Iwas too lazy to flip it.
Our private tour group of six flanked on each side by our tour guides. A fantastic day all the way around.

Casablanca– Perhaps the most famous city we visited on the cruise, mostly due to the classic Humphrey Bogart/Ingrid Bergman suspense romantic film of 1942. But in reality this is a large city in Morocco on the northwestern tip of Africa on the Atlantic Ocean side. Like most of northern Africa it is dominated by Muslim people but a non-secular government is in place. All 15 people from our group rented a private bus tour. We drove around some interesting spots and toured one of the largest mosques I have ever seen. But the tour was hurt by our tour guide who took us to a “shopping: stop were at first we were trapped by a very aggressive carpet/rug sales team and pushed very hard to get us to buy rugs. The we were move over to a similar spot to buy spices after another hard sales pitch. Leslie actually tried to buy some herbs but they only wanted cash. When she said she had to use a credit card they tried to usher her privately to another building saying that was the only place they could use credit cards. I felt we were being railroaded so insisted we just leave then. we got back on the bus unhappy with the visit and our feelings towards Casablanca were hurt by the constant sales pitches.

The Mosque and surrounding property. It actually has modern featured like a removable roof because it was built in 1986.
Inside the public areas of the mosque
A view of the building around the mosque which seemed very typical of the area.

Santa Cruz de Tenerife– This was actually our second visit to this beautiful island off of the Atlantic coast of Africa. Owned by Spain it is also a common vacation spot for norther Europeans, especially the British. On our first visit we took a tour to around the island all the way to the opposite coast. So this time a group of us just walked all around the main port town.

Leslie and Bill as we walk around the local streets
The town has fountains and statues all over
Leslie insisted this was my brother on a political poster i

Ponta Delgado – Our final part was another island, this time a little further west in the Atlantic. This is owned by Portugal so we like to say we have visited Portugal now even though we never reached the mainland of this country. To say this island was stunning doesn’t do it justice. We took a bus ride through the inner parts of the island and we awestruck by the natural beauty. Also our friend Richie Silva was born here before moving to the USA as a child.

The “Green Lake on the interior of the island. It is connected by a small stream to the “Blue Lake”. While the two lakes are connected they appear to be different colors due to the different depths and types of undergrowth.
The “Blue Lake”
Charming streets in the inner part of the main port city
A small Catholic Chapel in the interior of the island
Leslie thought it was a statue of me. It is actually the missionary Priest who drove the Catholic development o the island.

2 thoughts on “Atlantic Crossing Cruise – Port Excursions

  1. Beautiful pix and great write-up! Having been on most of these travel segments with you, I really enjoyed seeing the pix and your commentary. We did and saw a lot! Thanks.

    Liked by 1 person

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