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12 night british isles rt from southampton (with dublin overnight) 9/10/17

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Thanks for sharing and the photos are great.(y)

 

Tony

 

 

 

Thanks Tony. Glad you’re following along. Much more to come.

 

 

 

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]Shopper's Nirvana

 

 

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One of Harrod's many food courts

 

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Dessert Menu from Langan's Restaurant in London. Owned by actor Michael Cain

 

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Mr. & Mrs. Met with our host Bill Kelly

 

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We should now be all caught up. Thank you Bimmer '09 (Norris) for the help.

 

Trip, you are most welcome! Now we can all see your photos and follow the adventure.

I used to work across the street (#1 Knightsbridge Green for Texaco's Oil Tanker division (me and ships!) and Harrods food court is phenomenal. Never ate in Langhans but love the menu art and the treats shown for a reasonable price. We're making a beeline for Gordon Ramsay on Hospital Road when we hit London next September to join Celebrity Silhouette.

I learned to drive in London (late in life at age 24) and knew my way around very well eventually and those landmarks were something I got to see almost daily. What beauty there is there, architecturally and culturally speaking. Such a cosmopolitan city.

I am glad you took my advice and ditched Photobucket. They have shot themselves in the foot with their sudden greed. Let it Bleed.

Norris, smitten by London at age 13

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Trip, you are most welcome! Now we can all see your photos and follow the adventure.

 

I used to work across the street (#1 Knightsbridge Green for Texaco's Oil Tanker division (me and ships!) and Harrods food court is phenomenal. Never ate in Langhans but love the menu art and the treats shown for a reasonable price. We're making a beeline for Gordon Ramsay on Hospital Road when we hit London next September to join Celebrity Silhouette.

 

 

 

I learned to drive in London (late in life at age 24) and knew my way around very well eventually and those landmarks were something I got to see almost daily. What beauty there is there, architecturally and culturally speaking. Such a cosmopolitan city.

 

 

 

I am glad you took my advice and ditched Photobucket. They have shot themselves in the foot with their sudden greed. Let it Bleed.

 

 

 

Norris, smitten by London at age 13

 

 

 

Norris

 

Learning to drive in London must’ve been crazy. I would think it’s much harder to get around than NYC. We both loved London. Very cosmopolitan and quite international. Everyone we met was friendly and really liked living there. Thanks again for the help. It saved me from blowing up PhotoBucket’s site!

 

Trip

 

 

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Norris

 

Learning to drive in London must’ve been crazy. I would think it’s much harder to get around than NYC. We both loved London. Very cosmopolitan and quite international. Everyone we met was friendly and really liked living there. Thanks again for the help. It saved me from blowing up PhotoBucket’s site!

Trip

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Insane. My first lesson: Driving school instructor was an Indian guy. Picked me up at home in Turnham Green, West London( I lived next door to the drummer from a band called King Crimson) and off we went for two hours. He told me he would ask me at random to name the last 5 traffic signs I saw so I really had to pay attention. Now we are in Hammersmith. All going well. Now we are going down Edgeware Road and I say- wait a minute isn't Hyde Park Corner up ahead? He laughed! Yes! Yikes....like driving around the Arc de Triomphe! Traffic coming from all over the place. Got through that then along Oxford Street the busy shopping street with buses and lorries and cabbies and pedestrians. We're gonna end up in Piccadilly Circus!! I warned. Yes! and more hysterical laughter from the Indian guy. I went all the way around it at showtime (theater crowds and mayhem) and back down Oxford Street. Ok, now take us back home he said. I needed a shower after all of that and working the gears.

Baptism by fire and from that day nothing was scary in any city I have driven in.

The end result is I took my driving test (very strict) in Teddington, by the Thames, and passed first time. I owe it all to the Indian guy challenging me from the get-go.

As I had passed in a record short number of lessons (9) the Driving School put my test card in their window. I have never missed an opportunity to drive a car since then. Hence my love of the Autobahn in Germany!

Norris

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LONDON CALLING Day 3/Part 1--9/9/17

 

With Hurricane Irma barreling toward the Florida peninsula, we arose to our real reason for visiting London prior to the Caribbean Princess British Isles Cruise: our chance to visit the State Rooms at Buckingham Palace. With the Palace only a 7 minute walk from our hotel, we had plenty of time to consume another healthy (just kidding),fortifying breakfast from the hotel buffet.

 

Our first stop on this day would be the Queen’s Gallery for the Canaletto exhibition. Since our 2015 trip to Italy included a stop in Venice, we truly found this artwork to be fascinating. Mrs. Met loves Venice and I loved seeing how she sparked up she gets every time she said, “remember when…” This exhibit was helping to hold off our anxiety about the storm approaching our home.

 

We then headed over to the main entrance to Buckingham and enjoyed the views and vibe at gates. We even spotted a contingent of the Queen’s Horse Guards marching right past us as we waited for our tour of the State Rooms.

 

 

The State Room tour begins once you’re inside of the courtyard that everyone sees from outside the gates. I admit I even got a little goose bumpy when I realized where we were. The State Room tour prohibited photography for obvious reasons so I have no pictures to show you. The tour was amazing and I’m glad Mrs. Met got to cross it off her bucket list.

 

 

Buckingham Palace

 

 

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The Queen's Gallery

 

 

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More Buckingham Palace

 

 

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Rear of Buckingham Palace after the State Room tour

 

 

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The Queen hosts many Garden Parties out here. You are invited if you've done something wonderful for society. Our invitations must have been lost in the mail.

 

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Lake and gardens further away from the rear of the Palace

 

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Insane. My first lesson: Driving school instructor was an Indian guy. Picked me up at home in Turnham Green, West London( I lived next door to the drummer from a band called King Crimson) and off we went for two hours. He told me he would ask me at random to name the last 5 traffic signs I saw so I really had to pay attention. Now we are in Hammersmith. All going well. Now we are going down Edgeware Road and I say- wait a minute isn't Hyde Park Corner up ahead? He laughed! Yes! Yikes....like driving around the Arc de Triomphe! Traffic coming from all over the place. Got through that then along Oxford Street the busy shopping street with buses and lorries and cabbies and pedestrians. We're gonna end up in Piccadilly Circus!! I warned. Yes! and more hysterical laughter from the Indian guy. I went all the way around it at showtime (theater crowds and mayhem) and back down Oxford Street. Ok, now take us back home he said. I needed a shower after all of that and working the gears.

 

 

Baptism by fire and from that day nothing was scary in any city I have driven in.

 

 

The end result is I took my driving test (very strict) in Teddington, by the Thames, and passed first time. I owe it all to the Indian guy challenging me from the get-go.

 

 

As I had passed in a record short number of lessons (9) the Driving School put my test card in their window. I have never missed an opportunity to drive a car since then. Hence my love of the Autobahn in Germany!

 

 

Norris

 

 

 

Who knew driving instructors were allowed to haze students like college fraternities? We were at both famous spots you mentioned so we know how busy and congested it can be.

That’s why we liked the black cabs so much. It just seemed to be the easiest way for us to see, learn, and experience London without too much stress. Plus, I don’t know how to drive on the left side of the road!

 

I took my driving school road test to the Bronx Zoo via the highway. I was hoping to bring home a new pet, but no such luck.

 

 

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Excellent reading, thanks! We’re on the same sailing in June on the Royal.

 

 

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Photos of Buckingham Palace bring back memories of our time there this summer. I loved being able to go inside and am glad I booked it in advance and did not have to wait very long. We also booked the garden tour, which was fabulous. Afterward we ate delicious ice cream from the kiosk near the exit.

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So lucky that you got to see the Canaletto collection. On our last trip to BP we were treated to the Queen's Diamond collection -- also quite fun. Your pix are delightful, esp like the garden shots behind the Palace. On this cruise, we had to skip visiting London altogether. I will plan better next time!

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Photos of Buckingham Palace bring back memories of our time there this summer. I loved being able to go inside and am glad I booked it in advance and did not have to wait very long. We also booked the garden tour, which was fabulous. Afterward we ate delicious ice cream from the kiosk near the exit.

 

geoherb

 

I thought the state room tour was fascinating. My wife was in 7th Heaven. I wanted some ice cream at the Kiosk too, but we were hurrying to get to Kensington Gardens to meet friends for afternoon tea. SOme pics of that should be coming up in the next post or two. Thanks for following along.

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LONDON CALLING Day 3/Part 2

 

The Buckingham Palace tour ends behind the palace itself in the Gardens. This is where the Queen hosts her summer garden parties a few times each summer for upwards of 400 invited guests. We then walked over to the Royal Mews for a nice tour of the Queen’s coaches and limousines. It was really interesting to see these exquisite, horse drawn carriages.

 

 

Another black cab ride dropped us off at Hyde Park so we could enjoy a proper Afternoon Tea at the Orangery at Kensington Palace. With pots of Earl Gray and lots of scones,finger sandwiches, and sweet treats, it was the perfect way to relax and share our 3 days of adventures with 2 of the 4 cruising companions who had been doing their own sightseeing. A fantastic dinner at the Ivy Restaurant in Covent Gardens allowed all 6 Caribbean Princess cruisers from the Naples area to gather and share stories of the wonderful time we all had in London.

 

 

One of the Queen's Horse Drawn Coaches

 

 

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Mr. Met Auditioning to be on of the Coach drivers

 

 

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Kensington Palace

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Kensington Gardens

 

 

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The Orangery at Kensington Gardens

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Afternoon Tea at The Orangery at Kensington Gardens

 

 

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The Naples Cruisers with a niece of one of the cruisers at St. Ermin's Hotel in Westminster

 

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The Signature dessert at The Ivy Restaurant in Covent Gardens. The dessert was called "A Window to the Ivy." It was fabulous. The entire meal was superb.

 

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If you are in London and near Covent Gardens, this is a must try restaurant.

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SOUTHAMPTON AND EMBARKATION--9/10/17

 

Sunday, September 10th would not only be the day we embarked from Southampton, but also the day Hurricane Irma would go crazy on SW Florida. We took the Princess coach transfer from Victoria coach station to Southampton and were at the port by noon. It was a nice ride from London through the English countryside.

 

Check in in Southampton was quick and painless, but the wait to get on the ship was not. It took about 45 minutes for our numbers to be called to board. It wasn’t a big deal to us with all the other stuff we were thinking about.

 

 

Once aboard, we turned out attention to escorting our cruising companions around the newly refurbished Caribbean Princess. They had not sailed with Princess before and were especially excited to see the newly reworked Slice Pizza Bar. The pizza was even better than remembered. Princess has the best pizza at sea we’ve had,and Slice did not disappoint. We then meandered over to the newly redecorated buffet area called the Market Place. The new décor has brightened up the place and the new features like the omelet station and cereal bar were quite good. The food there was delicious, as always. Once our staterooms were ready we then retreated to unpack, do some ironing in the laundromat, and track the progress of Irma on the Weather Channel. We watched as the path of the storm go right through our town.

 

Our group used anytime dining throughout the cruise and we made a standing 7:30 reservation in the Coral dining room for the 6 of us. The food and especially the service was top notch. Our Princess newbies were quite impressed at the quality of service throughout the ship. Comedian George Casey entertained us in the Princess Theatre. He was quite funny and took a personal interest in us once he discovered we were from Naples. Although he is a native of Ireland, he now lives in Orlando and was quite in tune with our anxieties. After a pleasant, but anxious day, we decided to retire early and prepare ourselves for Day 2 which had become an extra sea day as the stop at Guernsey was canceled due to high winds and rough seas.

 

 

Our Floating Hotel and Casino

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Mrs. and Mr. Met (aka Pam and Trip)

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Entry into the Piazza from the gang plank

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Thanks for posting this. We are doing this route (almost, we have liverpool instead of 2 dublin) and I love hearing others experiences.

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Our Stateroom C415 Caribe (Deck 10) was a standard balcony cabin but with the large balcony found on this deck on most Grand Class ships.

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The room is plenty big enough for the both of us. We are tiny people and don't find the stateroom or bathroom that cramped.

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My dessert the first night of any Princess Cruise is always the Love Boat. What's not to Love?

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SEA DAY 1--9/11/17

 

We were able to get a few texts through to neighbors back home in Naples and learned that we had some minor damage to the roof files and pool cage. The anticipated 15 feet o fstorm surge that worried us more than the wind damage, never materialized. Miraculously, the tide was going out when the back side of the storm went through Naples. This saved many from the devastating flooding that was expected. Armed with the good news that dog, dog sitter, and home were as well as could be expected, we tried to enjoy an extra day at sea.

 

 

The rough seas kept 2 in our party from experiencing the day from anywhere but their stateroom. Mrs. Met and I hit the gym for the first time since we left Florida. It was good for the body, soul,and psyche. We then enjoyed wandering around the ship visiting the shops, hitting the International Café, the MarketPlace, and taking a well-deserved nap. Our first formal night would be left to a party of Mrs. & Mr. Met as the two other couples skipped dinner due to sea sickness of our 2 lady friends. The husbands of the ill dined in the Market Place. We enjoyed a very nice dinner in the Coral and then headed Crooners to hear piano player Funch entertain us. It was a nice relaxing day and we felt much better that all was at least ok at home.

 

 

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COBH—9/12/17

 

Cobh, Ireland is a beautiful little port in South,Central Ireland. The ship docks right in the center of the town unlike many of the industrial ports in Europe. You literally walk off the ship and right into this quaint town filled with shops, pubs, and restaurants. After our group visited the Titanic Experience (Cobh was the ill-fated ship’s last stop) our group hiked about town looking for some authentic Irish food. Unfortunately for us, we didn’t realize that one of the town’s best restaurants was about 100 yards from the ship, but the extra steps gave us a chance to explore this gem of a place more. The Quay’s Restaurant and Bar fed us extremely well. The food was excellent and the views are not to be missed.

 

After a group pow-wow, it was decided that our two lady friends would venture by train to Cork, the 2 male friend would return to the ship for drinks and naps, and Mr. & Mrs. Met would venture about town for a while longer. We walked up the hill to visit Colmon’s Cathedral. From there you have a tremendous view of the town, harbor, and ship docked below. It was well worth the hike and is highly recommended when you visit.

 

Our standing 7:30 dinner reservations in the Coral Dining Room allowed us to meet what would be our new best friends for dinner: Servers Siti and Igor. We really hit it right off the bat when we sat down and we requested they be our servers for the rest of our cruise when we ate in the main dining room. Dinner was great as usual and we then retreated to the Princess Theatre to hear our friend, comedian George Casey, for his PG rated show. He was tremendously funny

 

Caribbean Princess docked in Cobh, Ireland

 

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Sign in a local shop greeting us

 

 

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The Naples Cruisers taken by Mr. Met

 

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Town of Cobh's waterfront

 

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West Beach

 

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Colmon's Cathedral

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Passenger ticket for Titanic Experience. The Titanic Experience is a great way to understand Cobh's place in the sad history of this doomed vessel. It only takes about an hour is is only roughly 15 euro pp.

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Some past and present day passengers

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Part of the Titanic Experience

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Titanic Menu

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Third Class accomodations

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First Class accomodations

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Only one of the Naples Cruisers passenger tickets was a survivor on the Titanic.

 

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St. Colmon's Cathedral

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Picture of downtown Cobh from St. Colmon's Cathedral

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More Beautiful Cobh

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A sad ending for this ship

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Chicken Pot Pie in Coral Dining Room

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Some sort of dessert Mrs. Met had. I had thought it was the same chicken pot pie I had, but was informed differently by Mrs. Met. She's ALWAYS right

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The food in the main dining rooms was excellent and the menu selections were varied so there was at least something for everyone. One of friends traveling with us has very severe food allergies and the head and assitant head waiters were especially attentive to her needs.

 

Up Next Dublin Day 1 of 2...

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Chicken Pot Pie in Coral Dining Room

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Some sort of dessert Mrs. Met had. I had thought it was the same chicken pot pie I had, but was informed differently by Mrs. Met. She's ALWAYS right

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The food in the main dining rooms was excellent and the menu selections were varied so there was at least something for everyone. One of friends traveling with us has very severe food allergies and the head and assitant head waiters were especially attentive to her needs.

 

Up Next Dublin Day 1 of 2...

 

Their pot pies are excellent but not very filling so will get a second main when ordering.

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DUBLIN, IRELAND 9/13/17 DAY 1 OF 2

 

We were all eager to visit Dublin, as none of the 6 of us had ever been there. Mr. & Mrs. Met were booked on Princess’ Dublin Castle and Book of Kells tour. It was a half day excursion and allowed us to meet up with our other cruise companions afterward for lunch. They were touring Dublin via the green HOHO bus and would meet us in the Temple Bar area.

 

The excursion first visited Trinity College and the university’s Library that housed the famous manuscripts of the Book of Kells. The library was very crowded, and we did get a passing glance of the famous works by monks. It was quite interesting to see, but did not allow for an extended stay because of the crowds. We then passed through the Long Room in the library which was very interesting not only in design, but content. We especially liked seeing the busts of famous writers.

 

After a short motor coach drive, we were at another famous castle, Dublin Castle. It is still a functioning government building and spot for many dignitary receptions. It was interesting to see this beautiful structure smack dab in the middle of a large modern city.

 

The bus then let us off at Princess’ shuttle stop for Dublin in Merrion Square. Mrs. Met and Iset about on foot and walked down to the banks of the River Liffey. We met up with our mates at the entrance to the famous night life area Temple Bar. Lunch at the Merchant’s Arch at the entrance to Temple Bar was quite enjoyable. The bangers and mash and Guinness stew were the popular dishes among the 6 cruise companions.

 

We parted ways with our friends after a delicious lunch. Off on our own again, we picked up our tickets to the green HOHO and rode about ½ the loop of the city taking in the sights south of the River Liffey. Shopping on Grafton Street and the walk to Fusilier’s Arch at St.Stephen’s Green left us a bit tired, chilled, and ready for a nice pub to boost our energy levels. Marcel’s Pub/Restaurant hit the spot with fish stew, fish and chips, Earl Grey tea (Mr.Met was getting sick) and ½ pints of Guinness for Mrs. Met. Its proximity to the Oscar Wilde statue and shuttle pick up area at the square were a real bonus. After a long day out and about in Dublin, we popped by the International Café for some sweets, coffee, and to soak up the scene in the Piazza, which is one of our favorite things to do on the ship.

 

Port of Dublin

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Port of Dublin/River Liffey

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Campus of Trinity College of Dublin

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Long Room in the Library of Trinity College

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Declaration of Irish Independence

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Brian Boru Harp

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Dublin Castle

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The Ha'Penny Bridge over the River Liffey

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The River Liffey which bisects Dublin

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The Merchant's Arch Pub at the entrance to the Temple Bar area

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It was a great pub with a spiral staircase up to the second floor lined with hundreds of pictures and phtographs

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All large cities have a famous street for shopping. Dublin has Grafton street:

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Keep heading south on Grafton Street and you'll run into Fusiler's Arch and the entrance to St. Stephen's Green.

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The smallest UPS truck I've ever seen

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Peat burning fireplace at Marcel's Pub near Merrion Square. The free shuttle from the port drops you off right at Merrion Square which is centrally located and easy to get to.

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Our walk to the shuttle took us past Irish Parliament

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A beautiful sunset over the Port of Dublin and a fantastic end to a great first day in Dublin

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. Up next: Dublin Day 2.

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I do appreciate your interesting photographs.

However, I find the color of the typing to be distracting and difficult to read-ie. the light green to describe the photos taken in Dublin.

Choosing black,or deep blue may be a better choice IMHO

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BELFAST, NORTHERN IRELAND 9/15/17

 

We were all very interested in visiting Belfast. One of the first things visible in the port is the new Titanic museum and the White Star House. Our friends visited the museum and said it was truly an amazing exhibit. If you’re a Titanic buff, this is your Graceland. They then toured the city via the HOHO and found it to be a wonderfu lcity. Yes, there are signs of the“troubles” around the city, mostly via murals on the sides of buildings. There was no unrest and they thoroughly enjoyed their time.

 

Mr. & Mrs.Met boarded a Princess coach that was to visit Dunluce Castle, the Giant’s Causeway and Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge along the Northeastern coast. The drive through the Northern Ireland countryside was very green and quite picturesque. A quick stop for lunch at a local hotel proceeded our drive along the coast. After passing the famous Golf Club Royal Portrush, we continued onto visit Dunluce Castle. The remains of this castle fire the imagination as to what this must have looked like in earlier times.

 

A short ride from Dunluce is the town of Bushmills, known for its whiskey and very close to the Giant’s Causeway. The famous basalt columns that jut from the ocean are a Unesco World Heritage site and truly worth the walk down to the coastline no matter what the weather. Wind and rain just add to the lore and legendary story of Finn MacCooland the Scottish Giant Benandonner. Cooled off significantly by the wind and rain, we warmed up in the modern visitor center with Earl Grey and some sweet treats. We nearly bought everything the gift shop had before hurrying back to the coach to return to the port.

 

The Princess Theatre entertainment was Freddie Mercury cover man Steve Larkins. If you like music of Queen, you probably liked him. If you are meh about Queen and Freddie Mercury, it was meh. I personally liked him. Mrs. Met decided that after the show we should visit Skywalker’s for a view of the wake, a night cap and a chance to strut our stuff on the dance floor. We enjoyed the drinks and view, but were two of the few people on the dance floor. Admittedly, it’s not exactly a Caribbean cruise vibe on this itinerary, and there were very few people under the age of 60, but we figured there might be a few more souls willing to stay up past 11:00. It was ok though because we had a big day planned for Greenock, Scotland, our next port.

 

 

Belfast Harbor and White Star Line House

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Royal Portrush Golf Club, Portrush Northern Ireland

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Just down east on Dunluce Road from Royal Portrush Golf Club is Dunluce Castle on the Northern tip of Northern Ireland

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Looking West along the Northern coast

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About a half hour east of Dunluce Castle along the coast lies a Unesco World Heritage Site:

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Just Northeast of the famous town of Bushmills, the GIant's Causeway is an area on the coast of about 40,000 interlocking basalt columns that were formed as a result of a volcanic eruption. The coastline here is most rugged, but very beautiful as you can see.

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It is a steep descent down the side of the mountains to the coastline where the basalt rock formations are. It was VERY windy and cool, but it did not deter Mrs. Met and I.

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Once at the bottom of the hill, the basalt columns form to the east on the coastline

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The landscape is very dramatic and quite beautiful

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It's almost as if the rocks were placed here by hand. They are amazingly symetrical.

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The columns range in size from about a foot to over 6 feet in height.

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A squall rolled in off the Atlantic and forced us to take cover behind some of the columns for shelter. It was about as rustic as it can get.

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Mrs. Met crouching behind the columns for shelter from the rain while listening to the audio guide.

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Mr. & Mrs. Met on the Giant's Causeway

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GLASGOW (PORT OF GREENOCK), SCOTLAND 9/16/17 Part

 

We didn’t know if we were dreaming, hallucinating, o rhearing a Captain’s announcement from the corridor, but we awoke this morning to the sounds of bagpipes. When Mrs. Met and I finally realized that it was coming from outside, we sprang to the balcony door like kids on Christmas morning to hear our wake-up call. It was quite special and kudos to whomever made this happen, be it the tourism authority or the cruise line. Our daily room service order of coffee, tea,fruit, pastry, yogurt, and granola fueled our bodies for our first experience in Scotland, a country we both had longed to visit.

 

The ship was anchored at the terminal located on the River Clyde and our coach warmed up in the port to take us on our journey through the Scottish Highland that we’d heard of in story and song. Our friends were on another excursion and now playing a man down as one of the gentlemen was feeling ill.

Our stops would include the town of Luss on Loch Lomond, the Rest and Be Thankful Pass, the town of Inveraray, Inveraray Castle, and afantastic ferry ride across the River Clyde back to port.

 

Luss, Scotland sits about half way up Loch Lomond’s western shore. It is a wonderfully sleepy, little town and just what you’d imagine a small Scottish town to be. A quick, 45-minute tour of the town on our own produced wonderful pictures of quaint houses, beautiful churches,and the most picturesque shores of the Loch.

 

We re-boarded the coach to continue the journey into the Highlands. Each turn of the bus provided one dramatic vista after another. We stopped for some selfies at the Rest and Be Thankful pass. Looking back down on the valley from the top in Glen Croe, you can see the original road that was built in 1750 by the military. A stone at the top of the pass is inscribed “rest and be thankful” and was placed there by the soldiers who built it.

 

Another delicious lunch at a local hotel (we forgot which one exactly, but think it was the Loch Fyne Hotel and Spa) preceded our visit to the town of Inveraray on banks of Loch Fyne. A quick visit to the apothecary for some cold medicine and cough drops for Mr. Met allowed us to meet some locals who welcomed us to their town. When we told them where we were from, they expressed concern for us about the aftermath of Hurricane Irma, like so many had before. We were glad to report from texts received once we made port in Greenock, informed us that power had returned after 5 days, the dog and her sitter were now back occupying our house and it was still standing and habitable.

 

After we visited this lovely town, we then boarded the coach to Inveraray Castle. It is part museum and part residence to the Duke of Argyll who lives on the top two floors with his wife and children. It is the home of the Campbell clan and the Duke is its Chief. He and the Duchess welcome nearly 1,000 visitors a day during tourist season. Often you can find them working in the gift shop or milling about the grounds. It was a truly gorgeous place. The ornate décor and more than 1,800 historical pieces including muskets, pistols, and swords are well displayed and very interesting. If you were to imaginea castle in your mind, this would be it. It was a simply gorgeous place and it should not be missed if you are in thearea.

 

After a wonderful visit at the castle, we were back on the bus headed toward port. A 20 minute ferry ride across the River Clyde saved more than 2 more hours of driving through the countryside. Luckily, the river was quite calm and the transit smooth. We were back in port by 4:00 and ventured back up to our cabin to catch up withour friends and perhaps grab a nap. Just before our 6:00 PM departure, we again heard the bagpipes. However, this time it was an entire corps perched on the pier to give us a wonderful send off. The sound of bagpipes is Mr. Met’s kryptonite due to his Irish heritage. His emotions got the best of him. It seemed that the bagpipers were not only saying, “thank you for visiting our wonderful town and country”, but also that things at home were going to be alright and it was now ok to enjoy this dream vacation without worry, concern or guilt from being so far away from family and friends. Message received.

 

 

The Wake up Callers

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Port of Invergordon, Scotland

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Cottages in Town of Luss

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Water bus stop in the town of Luss on Loch Lomond

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Banks of Loch Lomond in Luss

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More cottages in Luss

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Church in Luss and grounds

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Mrs. Mets tries her first Scottish Ice Cream near the Luss General Store. She reported that it was yummy!

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Rest and Be Thankful Pass lies just north of the Bonnie Banks of Loch Lomond along road A83. It was very beautiful countryside.

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Town of Inveraray on Loch Fyne

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Loch Fyne at the Town of Inveraray, Scotland

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The Inveraray Inn along Loch Fyne

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A very sporty looking vehicle

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After our visit in the town of Inveraray, we then made the short drive to Inveraray Castle. It's home to the Duke of Argyll and the seat of the Campbell Clan

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The Duke of Argyll and his family occupy the top two floors, and the rest is open to the public for touring

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