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Greek Islands - A cruise on MS Ocean Majesty 2019

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  • Ralf__
    replied
    The excursion should lead us by bus to Epidaurus, have a guided tour there and then back to town and visit an "Ouzo-factory" to learn about the making of this national beverage. A tour through the town should complete the 5 hour tour. 3 hours for Epidaurus and back, 1 hour with Ouzo and 1 hour in the town. Later on you should have time left to do a walk on your own.

    On a small ship with just roundabout 330 passengers starting a tour was not a problem, since there were just two or three busses waiting for us. Nevertheless it took a lot of time, until the elderly people managed to get onto their bus seat. Some claimed, they had to sit in the front, because in the back the would get sea-sick and so on... After a couple of minutes we started our trip (30km, 30 minutes to go).
    As we arrived, we had to wait again until everyone climbed off very slowly. It had to be discussed in detail, that the bus would leave exactly at this place (the main entrance) and how to find back there. Finally we started to walk on... for 30 meters. There a toilet was nearby and many of the visitors had to have a "short" rest. About 10 minutes later, everyone did, what he had to do and we walked on for the next 60 meters. Stop again, the guide had to count double to get the tickets. Another 10 minutes later we entered the gate. Nearly 90 minutes were gone since we left the ship. Very slowly we approached the museum, which is 100 meter from the entrance. A woman walking on crutches was claiming that we were walking to quick... The guide continued her detailed discourse about the Greek mythology, which she started in the bus. After two hours from the beginning she entered the museum and stopped immediately again in front of a small vitrine with tiny tools. 40 people tried to see anything and also to understand her speech - we did not have a head set. At this point we left the guided tours because you could see, that we never ever would see anything of Epidaurus otherwise. So we went on our own to the big amphiteatre.

    IMG_2470 by Ralf Plinta, auf Flickr

    As many of you may know, this is the theatre with the perfect acoustic. If someone in the centre drops a coin, you can hear it clearly on the uppermost row of seats. A lot of people tried this, of course. Very impressing!

    IMG_2477 by Ralf Plinta, auf Flickr

    We went a while up and down and were just about to leave the place, when the group made the way up from the museum. We arranged with the guide a time and place where to meet. The bus would just have a short time to pick us up at the place in front of the main entrance, so we would need a buffer zone. The caculated time for the visit was nearly over, so the guide extended the time window by 20 minutes. We walked over the wide areas and admired the stadium. Detailed explanations guided you perfectly through the places of interest.

    IMG_2510 by Ralf Plinta, auf Flickr

    5 minutes before the agreed time we waited at the agreed place and watched another typical Greek picture: Cats are everywhere. 10 minutes after the agreed time the guide with the group arrived and the people rushed in never before seen velocity to a stand with fresh pressed orange juice made from green oranges. The guide also got herself one, of course for free. Then the same scenery as we entered: Stop at the rest room, double check before we entered the bus after we picked up the last self-forgotten people from the souvenir shops.

    IMG_2517 by Ralf Plinta, auf Flickr

    We left the place with a delay of nearly 1 hour.
    Last edited by Ralf__; December 5th, 2019, 16:09.

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  • Ralf__
    replied
    In a nautical way the next port - Nauplia - was a highlight of the cruise. The entrance of the port was nearly blocked with super-yachts and two dredgers. So the crew was alarmed, the captain stood on the backbord nock, a second officer was ordered on starbord and first officer and steersman were on the bridge. Loud orders had to be confirmed, as the captain found his way through the obstacles.

    IMG_2428 by Ralf Plinta, auf Flickr

    As you can see, the port was obviously not very deep and the captain had to steer exactly with a complicated turn alongside the quai. He had a clear strategy, but the linesmen of the port had a different opinion. They tried to begin a discussion with the crew onboard, which was stopped very loud by the captain... Greece. As you can see, i had the perfect position to spot this situation.

    IMG_2436 by Ralf Plinta, auf Flickr

    Here we booked our first bus trip, which should lead us to Epidaurus. But we could also watch, that it would have been very easy, to do an individual trip. Several taxis arrived as soon as we could leave the ship and the taxi trip would have been less expensive and with lot more time for the "old stones". But more of this story later.

    IMG_2448 by Ralf Plinta, auf Flickr
    Last edited by Ralf__; December 3rd, 2019, 09:47.

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  • yvneac
    commented on 's reply
    OK Mark, I see. I'm afraid that not only my English is limited, my mind too!

  • PoloUK
    commented on 's reply
    Humble apologies Yves - I get very unpopular at work for attacking people who use abbreviations without defining them, and now I've done the same. I meant Ocean Majesty. And your English is definitely not limited!

  • yvneac
    commented on 's reply
    Sorry Mark, my English is limited. What is a OM?

  • PoloUK
    replied
    Enjoying this Ralf - we saw plenty of OM from the outside during our trip this year - it's good to see the inside!

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  • Ralf__
    replied
    A shopping dream. And a clear disadvantage, if you are all-inclusive in a floating hotel.

    IMG_2308 by Ralf Plinta, auf Flickr

    Can you smell the fresh roasted coffee?

    IMG_2309 by Ralf Plinta, auf Flickr

    After the showers went through - we strolled during this period under the arcades - we climbed up the hill to have a nice view on the ships.

    IMG_2348 by Ralf Plinta, auf Flickr

    To be continued with day 4 of our cruise: Nauplia

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  • Ralf__
    replied
    Of course the Ortodox churches are always worth a visit, lot's of gold everywhere. But that just as example. I am no fan of church buildings.

    IMG_2287 by Ralf Plinta, auf Flickr

    While the harbour promenade was overloaded with car rental shops, pizza restaurants and souvenir shops, the real life was two or three streets behind.

    IMG_2305 by Ralf Plinta, auf Flickr

    If we would have been here with our campervan, we would have had plenty of ideas for our dinner, but we were lazy and other people did this for us this time.

    IMG_2307 by Ralf Plinta, auf Flickr

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  • Ralf__
    commented on 's reply
    Looks to me like tachograph discs. We know it from older trucks, but maybe Ombugge knows more about it?

  • Ralf__
    replied
    The next day's destination was Zakynthos. We had to use the tenderboats there. Here we decided to have a walk through the town on our own.
    Of couse we were out on deck to watch the ship's approach from the sun deck. Weather was critical, some heavy showers were rolling in.

    IMG_2248 by Ralf Plinta, auf Flickr

    The town looked promising and we expected to climb on some nice view points.

    IMG_2243 by Ralf Plinta, auf Flickr

    We took the second tender boat and the first people came already back - rather wet - and decided to change their clothes. We were better prepared and had a view back. With us was the Marella Explorer, the Ex Mein Schiff 1. Although not so huge, there is anyway a significant difference in size.

    IMG_2280 by Ralf Plinta, auf Flickr

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  • Ralf__
    replied
    Oh hello, all my friends are reading!! Nice! Thank you.

    The website is https://www.hansatouristik.de/.
    It is all German, but you know that i will help you in any questions.
    The service crew is from the Philippines and we talked better English with them all the cruise, no question.
    The ships crew is also better in English than in German, so it is just the touristic team by Hansa, which is German.
    And you should better go at land on your own, so you will need them seldom, and of course they also speak a little English.
    French? Sorry, i did not try, but sometimes you experience a surprise.

    A last impression from our ship's tour. Sundown from our cabin window...

    IMG_2237 by Ralf Plinta, auf Flickr

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  • wherrygirl
    replied
    Ah Ralf, this looks idyllic. Yves remarked "I guess your ship would be for my taste, both her size and her decoration." and that is my feeling, too.

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  • Tommi
    replied
    This is both nice and interesting! Looking forward to see some more!

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  • Sterkoder
    commented on 's reply
    I'm so thankful for the interior and bridge pictures you present to us, Ralf! Thank you!
    And back to that picture for the geeks (from the bridge): what are those round charts on the stick there in the left hand side of the picture?

  • Sterkoder
    commented on 's reply
    How beautiful that old ship looks inside! And that chocolate "waterfall"...wow!!! (Nice to have diabetes type 2 when this is on the table)
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