Have stories to tell…Not stuff to show!#Shutterbug Sparsh Kataria • September 14, 2017
Fill your life with adventures … have stories to tell!
That’s exactly what I did. I decided that for this holiday, I would aim to see a dozen new cities in just two weeks. Anyone would think that this would mean a hectic trip, without time in each city. However, this wasn’t the case. In fact, I sailed the Adriatic Sea on a beautiful cruise for a fortnight and visited twelve magnificent cities in multiple countries.
I boarded the ship in Venice – possibly my favourite city in the world. Venice is unlike any other city I’ve been to – the City of Canals was like a beautiful painting which left me totally mesmerised. We spent three awesome days there, before boarding the cruise ship – which resembled a massive luxury floating hotel with numerous entertainment and dining options. We were given a schedule of activities which included movie shows, dance classes, musical performances and so on. Delicious food options were available 24/7, and of course we didn’t have to check in and out of hotel rooms, or take tiring flights on our journey.
The first city the ship docked in was Dubrovnik in Croatia – the city where “Game of Thrones”, is shot. My excursion for the day was to check out The King’s Landing, where the tour guide showed me the actual shoot location with scene images. The view from the top of this Fort was stunning. After spending my day walking around the town I returned to the ship in the evening, which became my routine for each day – explore each city by day, and return to the ship to enjoy and evening of shows and dinner.
Next we sailed to Valletta, Malta. I decided to explore this tiny but beautiful city on foot. The fun fact about this city is that it has no forest areas and the entire city has been recognised as a world heritage site by UNESCO. From one heritage city to another, we reached Rome. The great Roman walk was one of my most beautiful experiences of all. From St. Peter’s Basilica to the Colosseum to the Pantheon, it was an endless list of gorgeous monuments. To top it all I had the yummiest tiramisu and the cheesiest gnocchi here. With these monuments still graphically fresh in my memory, I arrived in the city of Pisa to see one of the world’s seven wonders. The leaning of this tower was an architectural error which made it unique.
From Pisa we headed to another architecturally rich city, Florence. Amongst the many beautiful churches and monuments of this city is the famous “David” statue by Michelangelo. After Florence, we bid adieu to Italy and headed to France – first stop the quaintly adorable city of Nice. On our day in this city it rained heavily, but this didn’t deter me from having the highly recommended lavender ice cream at Fenocchio. Also, while in France how could I not have macaroons, so I took some them back to devour while lounging in the ship.
Next was one of the most expensive and glamorous countries in Europe despite being the tiniest – Monaco. This country and sovereign city state is only 2 square kilometres in area, making it smaller than New York’s Central Park. This tiny country houses casinos, super expensive shops and also a Grand Prix track. It is one of the world’s most expensive countries to live in in and offers honorary citizenships to the likes of Novak Dokovic & Lewis Hamilton. Walking around the city, which still is a monarchy, felt like I was in a fairy tale as there were castles and bejewelled structures all around.
After Monaco, it was time to head to the last country, Spain. Our time in this country included visits to Mallorca, Ibiza and Barcelona. As soon as I set foot in Mallorca, I realised that this island has a very easy, chilled out vibe. The food, the beaches and the delicious sangrias ensured we had a great time. While touring these cities, I saw bullfighting arenas, flamenco performances, Gaudi’s Art and crazy parties. In Barcelona, since it was the last city I was visiting, I indulged in some retail therapy too.
Like all good things, my adventurous trip came to an end. I have to say that whoever designed the cruise’s itinerary, was a genius. Ending it in Spain ensured I wound up happy and high!!