The seniors continued their cruise after Palma to Marseille, Genoa and finishing in Barcelona. Then continuing to Malaga for a few days as seniors love to travel!
The next port was Marseille in France. We arrived on a Sunday and it was very busy.
From the cruise terminal we took a bus transfer to Marseille center (it cost 13 Euros per person). We got off the bus at the World Trade Center. I always take a photo of street name or building when we get off a bus, then if I get lost I will know how to ask directions to that location!
It was a 10 minute walk to the marina. Everyone seemed to be out for lunch as it was a Sunday, so it was difficult to get a table with a view, but we managed!
After lunch we shopped for Provence gifts. I bought a soap that is from Provence and it is so kind on my hands and the scent is addictive.
While I was having a coffee in Marseille, I got talking to four French ladies at the next table as they heard I was Irish! Two of them had lived in Ireland to learn English. Small world!
After the day in port, I returned to the ship to enjoy the pool and sun. While Bill, my partner and his twin brother enjoyed a few drinks in a very posh hotel for a few gin and tonics, but they were very expensive.
The next port was Genoa in Italy and I was very excited to see this port as I had heard so much from my pal who lives there. Unfortunately this time she was away on another cruise in Hawaii!
I enjoyed a two-hour city tour that I booked while I was in the cruise terminal. It was fantastic value only 14 Euros.
The guys went on an eco-cycle trip, like a rickshaw. They were able to experience the narrow streets of the old historic center of Genoa. Next time I’m in Genoa I am going to do this.
Then it was back to Barcelona. We stayed two nights in Barcelona so we could see the sights. The MSC PREZIOSA docked at midday in Barcelona.
Another paddle greeted me with my name on it for the private transport to bring us to Hotel Aranea where we were staying in Barcelona. It was a 30 minute drive to reach our hotel as the traffic was heavy.
Hotel Aranea is a budget hotel with three stars. It is a good location for access to the centre. The rooms were very good, clean and spacious.
The reception staff were very helpful. We had two rooms here so Charlie was glad to get his single!
We took a siesta and then went out for a walk, admired the architecture of the buildings. I was reminded of my days living in Madrid.
There were banners and flags were on most balconies as it was the time of the voting for Catalan independence.
We were very lucky to find the El Crillo restaurant that offered outdoor space to enjoy as well as indoor. We had a lovely meal there and the meal was so good, we revisited it the following night!
I had a Catalan fish dish and the men had steaks. We had terrific service. I got talking to a senora that was having her nightly coffee there since her husband died.
I can see how the climate helps people who are sad, bereaved etc., to get out of their apartments and walk their dogs.
That night Bill gave me a rose! So romantic!
Our final day in Barcelona, we walked through various streets. I had one bad experience where a fluid that resembled an out of date vegetable soup was thrown on my white blouse and on the back of the twin’s shorts.
But I saw the two guys who did it and they pretended they had nothing to do with it. They were offering us tissues and water. As I speak Spanish, I warned them to go or I would call the police.
The twins cleaned up my white shirt and we had to hurry to get the last bus for our two-hour city bus tour. We bought our tickets at the newspaper stall; there is the Red Tour or Green Tour.
We went on the Red Tour which I would advise. It had audio in five languages. We were brought right around the city.
Up into the mountains where the Olympic Games had been held. We stopped outside Barcelona Football Club and there was great excitement on the bus! We saw buildings with Gaudi’s artwork; I am a big fan of Gaudi.
From Barcelona we flew to Malaga by Vueling Airlines. When we got to Malaga we took a taxi to Torreblanca that took 30 minutes. You can also take a train directly from Malaga airport to Torreblanca.
We stayed in our apartment there for five days, to get some winter sun before we returned to the Irish winter!
From my travel agent!
“I am thrilled to have had the pleasure of organising this trip for my favourite three travelling seniors”
Hazel Fogarty – Travel Consultant
Facebook: Hazel’s Cruise Page
DigiGran is the founder of the T.V. Group Seniorpreneurs Ireland on Facebook.
Brenda’s Travel Suggestions
I don’t know about you, but I travel with my pillow! I have a Reflex Pillow that I love and cannot sleep without.
I love to travel with essentials oils especially these ones:
Align your senses with a rush of lemongrass which breezes into the hustle and bustle of travel. Cooling peppermint for tummy and mind. Settle into a state of rest with the tranquil notes of Lavender and Ylang Ylang.
I get my essential oils from Karl Murray an Artisan Essential Oil Distiller at www.kotanical.ie. KOTANICAL is the first company in Ireland to distil oil from natural native sources.
(B.Bergin is a participant in the Amazon EU Associates Programme, an affiliate advertising programme designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.co.uk, at no extra cost, to you).