Norwegian Jade Croatia & Greece, Roundtrip Venice

Enjoy a morning splash or and afternoon dip in the pool. Photo: NCL

 

Nothing beats firsthand experience from a knowledgeable friend who is well traveled. You can always read about all the cruise details online. What really brought this trip to life was Ralph’s daily email journal posts. He wrote about the little things they like and the ones they didn’t in his journal.

The magic happens to this cruise when the official Norwegian Cruise Line details are combined with the live commentary, real time reaction and, the hands on experience of a fellow traveler. My friends name is Ralph. He and his beautiful and brilliant wife Jan are world travelers. Ralph and Jan are RJ

Sailing the Mediterranean year-round, Norwegian Jade  is the perfect way to see the Greek islands and some of the most important sites of antiquity.

And as you cruise from port to port along stunning coastlines, you’ll entertained day and night with exciting nightclubs, award-winning restaurants, a grand casino, swimming pools, a pampering spa and even a basket ball court.

Good day in Venice, Emperors palace museum, San Marcos Basilica, gondola ride which was rather expensive:100 Euros. RJ

6-Day Croatia & Greece, Roundtrip Venice

Ports of Call: Venice, Italy, Dubrovnik, Croatia, Athens (Piraeus), Greece, Olympia (Katakolon), Greece

The cruise starts and ends in Venice, if possible, make plans to stay in the city built on water before or after the cruise.

Dubrovnik, Croatia – Dubbed “the pearl of the Adriatic” by the poet, Lord Byron.
Passengers disembarked at Kope, Slovenia and took a bus to Pirin for a walking tour.

Welcome to the oldest town in Slovenia. Piranoriginally made salt from sea water, which it still does today. Back to the Jade to rest, have dinner and see a 60’s and 70’s musical production. Next, a day at sea.

It’s always a happy hour on the Norwegian Jade. Enjoy a pub crawl, a sunset celebration on deck or, a wine tasting at the Star bar. Photo: NCL

Athens (Piraeus), Greece
The cradle of civilization. Athens (Piraeus), Greece – Next stop, Split, Croatia then on to Krka River National Park. The river drops over 17 falls to sea level, producing electricity on the way down. The city was founded by Dioclision, the Roman Emperor. Parts of his 1700 year old palace remain.

It was supposed to be a tour of Dubrovnik by sea and by land but the sea part was canceled due to rough seas.

After the tour, RJ walked around the town and stopped for a “small fish dinner.”  It really was little fried fish, 2” long with heads and tails intact but wholly edible.  With 2 pints, it was 133k which would = $17.73 including tip. RJ

Olympia (Katakolon), Greece

The following day was a day at sea cruising South along the Italian coast. The ship will reach Sicily by morning, going ashore at Messina.

It continues to cause awe that we are in an area of the world that had a going civilization 2 and 3 thousand years ago and such great buildings, public edifices, statuary and public works, including water supply, waste water systems, roads, and terraced agricultural fields growing many of the crops we use today. RJ

The next morning there was for a bus tour of Messina, then to Taormina for a walking tour. Onto Mt. Etna, stopping at the base of the mountain for lunch. Ascending to the 6000’ level to overlook some recent craters and lava flows.

The next morning was a bus tour of Naples. Settled in the 7th century BC, today, Naples has a population of 1 million. Pompeii is next.

Pompeii was buried under 20’ of volcanic ash for 1700 years before it was rediscovered in 1750. The buildings, arches, columns, statuary and decorations were just fabulous for a city of 2000 years ago. It was time to go back on the boat and pack for home.RJ

In the morning, passengers disembark at their leisure. Ralph and Jan leave for an 8 hour familiarization tour of Rome.

Free style means everyone in the family can do what they want. Supervised kid activties allow parents to slip off for a quiet dinner for two. Photo: NCL

What is Freestyle Cruising?

It’s your vacation, your schedule. Greet the sunrise or sleep in as late as you like. Entertainment choices are only limited by your imagination. Enjoy entertainment never-before-seen at sea. Eat when you want and where you want. Open seating with a group or dine at a table for two. Dress as you please. Dress up or go casual anywhere on the ship. For example, it’s your option get decked out in your favorite white outfit and dance the night away at the White Hot Party. Wireless Internet access is available in your stateroom and all public areas, 24 hours a day for a fee.

Leave the ship in great shape. At the spa schedule Total Glow Self Tanning, keep up your routine fitness program with yoga, spinning or Pilates experience. Try a acupuncture treatment, teeth whitening, daily massages or a body wrap.

The Norwegian Jade  carries 2400 passengers. Jade launched in 2006. Norwegian Cruise Lines (NCL) has taken delivery of the first of its really big ships which will hold 4000 passengers and has another to be delivered in 2013, Norwegian Breakaway and Norwegian Getaway in 2014. A valid passport is required and in some cases, a tourist visa is also required.

I am reporting on the trip of a lifetime. I have not been on this Norwegian cruise. Ralph and Jan took the back to back cruises. Ralph’s writing is in italics.

You might like: Norwegian Jade’s 7 day Mediterranean and Greek Isles

Cruises on the Jade are available year round. Choose what’s best for you. Photo: NCL.

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