It was somewhere mid 2010, coming back from a roadtrip through the United States, when we decided we would try a new type of vacation. Having heard all the stories about cruising being for old people, being stuck on a ship for days, seasickness and even outbreaks of norovirus, we nevertheless decided we would give a holiday on the high seas a try.
Our first cruise on board Royal Caribban’s Adventure of the Seas was such a good experience we decided to book a second cruise.
While our first cruise was a short five night trial cruise, for the second we decided we would go all out and cross the Atlantic onboard Jewel of the Seas. Twelve nights onboard a ship, seven whole days at sea, with nothing but water surrounding us, and maybe a shark or two who knows, we might get bored. But guess what, we loved it. In fact we loved it so much that we have crossed the Atlantic Ocean six more times onboard a cruise ship since then.
Those first two cruises were such a great experience for us that they have influenced the way we have travelled since then. While we normally spent two or three weeks roadtripping across the USA, we now plan our holidays in function of cruise ships, cruise ports and cruise itineraries.
Cruising has become a new way of travelling for us. While we had to pack and unpack our bags everytime we arrived at a new destination on our roadtrips, we now unpack our bags once, at the beginning of a cruise, only to repack them at the end of another wonderful experience.
Now almost six years later, we are ready to celebrate our twentieth cruise.
Having spent almost 200 days at sea onboard a Royal Caribbean, Celebrity Cruises or Norwegian Cruise Line ship, our next adventure will be onboard an MSC cruise ship.
In ten days time we will board MSC Splendida in Zeebrugge and sample the ‘Mediterranean style’ of cruising. During seven days MSC Splendida will be our home away from home while we visit Amsterdam, Hamburg, Southampton and Le Havre in France.
Amsterdam, the capital of the Netherlands, is a city we have visited before. This time we look forward to doing some of the things we should have done on previous visits, like exploring the city by canal boat and visiting the Royal Palace. The German city of Hamburg is unknown territory for us. On the top of our to see list is a visit to the Hambrug City Hall, or Rathaus, the historic Speicherstadt and harbour and the St. Michael’s Church. Southampton will be a day of zany zebra hunting while doing some shopping and taking in a bit of history. Le Havre will be our gateway to explore the picturesque town of Honfleur.
As this will be our first cruise with MSC, and having heard good and bad things about MSC Cruises, we are somewhat exited as to what we can expect. However, judging from our visit to MSC Magnifica in October 2014 and the video below, we should have a great twentieth cruise.