One of the interesting things about visiting foreign countries — and there’s no better way to see many of them than from a cruise ship — is the number of photo ops. Signs quickly became a subject we kept an eye open for, and below are some we found “interesting” for a variety of reasons…
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You don’t have to appreciate fine art to enjoy some of the works you encounter in traveling the world on cruise ships — and there is art of some sort virtually everywhere you go. This is a collection of artistic impressions that have caught our eyes, or at least the lens of our cameras…
We’ve never been on a cruise ship that stopped in Turkey. Now, chances are we never will. Such is the cruise climate in this volatile part of the world, even though Istanbul and Kusadesi aren’t in the same area code as places bordering on Syria, where there are daily fears of terrorist attacks.
On the weekend, Crystal Cruises announced Turkey was persona non grata. The Crystal Symphony was scheduled to call at the two popular Turkish ports in late April and early May, but not now. The itineraries have been revised due to the “safety and peace of mind of our guests” and the Symphony will make two more stops in Greece instead. The same goes for Crystal Esprit, a future ship (above) with itineraries that were going to include Turkey. The same goes for Disney cruises that once included Istanbul.
If there’s any irony in this, it’s that avoiding Turkey isn’t exactly the antidote for safety. It’s true that a suicide bomber killed 10 German tourists in Istanbul this month, an act that was obviously the trigger for Crystal’s decision. It’s also true that tourists have either been murdered or in danger of being murdered in Tunisia, and in Paris.
Tourists feel danger everywhere, because murderous attacks strike fear in the hearts and minds of the free world’s population. But it’s all about playing the odds, isn’t it? And in a country that’s geographically close to the troubled Middle East, the odds of being a victim seem higher.
Such is life in today’s world.
In the news…
• Sea trials completed for Holland America Koningsdam
• More Australians than ever booking cruises on P&O ships
Today at portsandbows.com: Two ships coming for Emerald Waterways
The price of oil fell to $36.51 on Friday, far from when analysts were speculating it might go as high as $200. The national average for gasoline in the U.S. is now below $2 per gallon for the first time since the horse and buggy, it seems.
Cruise experts like our pal Phil Reimer say cruise prices are on the rise. Cruise lines are reporting enormous profits in their financials…how enormous is Carnival’s $2.1 billion net profit for 2015?
Are we missing something here?
A major cost for cruise lines is going down and the cost of cruising is going up?
Some airlines still include fuel surcharges in the price of tickets. While none we know of have that audacity, some cruise lines still have the option of doing the same thing. Some government postal services still add it to the price of shipping.
When will it end?
Probably when the people speak with actions…by not using the services of companies that adopt such ridiculous policies — or at least by using them less.
In the news…
• Carnival’s fees for room service to go fleet-wide after three-ship test
Today at portsandbows.com: The Harmony-ous fall from 10 stories
In a country such as Vietnam, markets are far more than tourist attractions; they are the lifeblood of its people, who depend on catches of the day and main courses that North Americans regard as delicacies for their survival. For locals, every day is market day, sometimes without closures. Fellow cruisers on AmaWaterways’ new river ship AmaDara had an opportunity to visit this Cai De market, not far from Ho Chi Minh City, and to photograph its contents and its people…
Southeast Asia seems to have as many types of rice as it has dialects.
Markets are family affairs for vendors, and the youngest learn that early.
To the question “Are those what I think they are?” the answer is “Yes — rats.”
A friendly wave and winning smile, trademarks of the Vietnamese people.
The dollar store of Cai De’s market, on the shores of the Mekong River.
Yes, those are chickens and they’re alive only until winding up on a plate.
Beneath the conical hat’s perfect cone is a woman happy at work in the market.
This was a surprise but maybe shouldn’t have been — games of chance sold here.
If Cai De had an award for coolest socks, chances are this would be a winner.
In the news…
• Explorer of the Seas rocked with tornado-like winds off Australian coast
• MSC confirms private island in Bahamas to be Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve
• Three norovirus outbreaks in three months on cruise ships in Australia
Today at portsandbows.com: Azamara unveils itineraries three years early
Holland America Noordam
May 1, 2016
Vancouver (return): Inside Passage, Tracy Arm, Juneau, Skagway, Glacier Bay, Ketchikan, Inside Passage
Cost per day: $99