Ronda Spain – a town on the edge!

The streets of Ronda are narrow and tight so our coach dropped us off at the local bus station.   It wasn't far just a 10 minute walk.   Some of our group went shopping, Sarah,  Peter, Muriel and I found a small restaurant to have some lunch.  My stomach was playing up so I …

Day 2 – Seville Spain

This was our last morning in Seville, and it would be a busy one.  Breakfast was early as we had to check our bags onto the coach.  Due to the Easter Celebrations our coach was only allowed to be parked in the side street for 20 minutes.  We would meet up with our coach near …

2 Days in Seville Spain – Part 1

    As we were arriving in Seville our guide advised us that due to Easter Celebrations our itinerary would be changed.  She also advised that our bus would have 20 minutes to stop to allow us to alight from the bus and have our suitcases taken into the Hotel Colon Grand Melia.  As it …

Day Trip to Queenscliff

On the 27/2/20 a  group of ladies from the Southern Peninsula VIEW Group took the ferry from Sorento to Queenscliff for the day.  Our weather has been so crazy and only a few days earlier we had been experiencing normal February temperatures of 35 degrees Celsius. The top temperature for today was only going to …

Its Rare Disease Day 29th February

On the 28th February  every year marks Rare Disease Day.  This year its on the 29th February - Leap Year.  I have two - Tuberous Sclerosis and Lymphangiomiomatosis.   When I was young around 6 I had some suspicious lumps removed from my face.  I remember having them and then not having them.  I know …

Adeus Portugal Hola Spain

It had been a wonderful couple of weeks sailing down the Douro River with Scenic then a few days exploring Portugal.  Today we would be having breakfast in Portugal and lunch and Dinner in Spain.  We fell in love with Portugal so with heavy hearts we say Adeus Portugal.  You have been very kind to …

Herdade do Esporao – Winery

    Today we were off to Herdade do Esporao a beautiful winery  in the Alentejo.  It was going to be an amazing day of learning, laughing, eating and drinking. A little bit of history - The winery was first established back in 1267.  We were told that no wine was produced until the 1990's.  They …

Capela Dos Ossos – Chapel of Bones Evora Portugal

Remember we were going to have an early cuppa on our deck?  Waking up to pouring rain put that on hold. We wandered down to the restaurant for an early breakfast.  I asked if there was anything gluten free.  I couldn't believe my eyes what they brought to my table.  Yummy gluten free croissant, Pasteis …

Evora Portugal

Our hotel in Evora the M'ar de Ar Aqueduto overlooked the Agua de Prata Aqueduct, a luxury hotel in a converted 16th Century Chapel. The Aqua de Prata built back in the 16th century  provided clean drinking water to Evora by connecting the city to the nearest constant flowing river, 9km to the north. The …

Lisbon to Evora via Setubal

We left Lisbon around 9am and would be heading to Evora Portugal where we would stay 2 days. Most of us dozed as the coach motored along.  After an hour or so we pulled up for our first break at Azulejos de Anita.  We were going to learn more about how the  tiles are made …

Lisbon and Beyond

An early start to the day with breakfast and then off on our day trip to see the sights of Lisbon and beyond. Our first stop would be at Freedom Park -  Parque da Liberdade.  Back in 1903  it was renamed to King Edward VII a tribute to King Edward VII of the UK, who …

Clube De Fado – Lisbon

We arrived at the Sheraton Hotel Lisbon where we would be staying 2 nights.  Our room was lovely and we had views out over Lisbon and the hotel pool directly below. In the distance you could see what looked like through the clouds a cross upon a tower. This was actually the Figure of Christ …

Nazare Portugal, a seaside town.

Our next stop would be for lunch.  A beautiful seaside town Nazare Portugal.  It was cold and the rain was threatening so we went looking for somewhere to eat.  We noticed our guide head into a restaurant and decided we would eat there also.  Of course due to my fish allergy had to make sure …

On Route to Lisbon via the Medieval City of Coimbra

Sunday arrived and our last breakfast aboard the Scenic Azure.  We said our goodbyes to the staff and our friends who wouldn't be joining us on the land tour.  A few tears were shed. We boarded our bus and were introduced to our guide Yolanda.  There were 20 of us so we could spread out …

An afternoon in Porto

Our last afternoon in Porto.  We decided to just let our feet take us around Porto. Dark rain clouds  were looming so we wore our rain jackets.  It was also very cold. We came across a market selling local wares and this is where the rain started falling. Porto is very hilly with most streets …

Filigree demonstration and workshop

Our last full day in Porto would be visiting Gondomar and a workshop and museum of Filigree.  So, what is Filigree? "Filigree is intricate metalwork.  Usually with very fine strands of gold or silver or both that is twisted then applied to a frame of various shapes, filling them with a delicate tracery. The foundry …

Cork, Port Wine, Chocolate & Classical Music along the Douro River

The cruise was nearly over.  We would be spending a whole day sailing back to Porto on the Douro River. We have been on other European cruises along the Rhine, Seine and Rhone and there was never  a day where we just sailed. So what to do on a sail day?   We could have …

Quinta da Roeda – Douro Valley – Portugal

After an amazing visit to Provesende we headed back to the  Scenic Azure. Lunch was served as our ship sailed to   Pinhão  for our  visit  to the Quinta da Roeda where the world famous Croft Port is made.           On offer at the vineyard were two experiences.  One was to …

Provesende – Portugal – A Treasure above the clouds

    As our coach climbed the hills of the Douro Valley, through the fog and the clouds, I had no idea of the steep drop at the edge of the road. Im not very good at heights so the fog was a blessing in disguise. Even when we arrived there was still a swirling …

Castelo Rodrigo – The Secret Historic Village on the hill

    Our visit this morning would be to Castelo Rodrigo.  This was a surprise as we were to have visited the Coa Valley. Apparently the dock for the Coa Valley was closed. Castelo Rodrigo is one of the  historical hill top villages in Portugal.  I hadn't heard of this place at all.  Once I …

Barca D’Alva and a wee bit of Lemon juice and a ton of whiskey!

The afternoon after our jumper shopping expedition in Regua we set sail for  the town of Barca D'Alva.  The following day we would be heading to Salamanca.  Some of us went to the  top deck to see the 3 bridges in all their glory.  The sun was shinning.  Yet the wind chill factor must have …

A day in Salamanca – Spain

  On the Tuesday of Day 6 of our cruise we were all going to Salamanca. This city is the capital of Salamanca province and is part of the Castile and León region. It is classed as an UNESCO World Heritage sight. It began very humbly during the Iron Age, and, over the years, included …

Peso da Régua and our quest to buy a jumper

A couple of days before we had berthed at  Peso da Regua around 6pm so those that wanted could  visi the Douro Museum. Muriel and I had decided not to visit.  It had been touch and go whether we would get their in time for the tour.  Also it was freezing and staying on the …

St John of Tarouca and the fortified Ucanha Bridge and the Little Dog that could!

The construction of St John of Tarouca began in the year of 1154.  It was the first Cistercian male monastery built in Portuguese territory. Monasteries were always built by rivers so they could be self sufficient. In 1834 there was an extinction decree of religious orders, meaning no more monasteries.  The church was converted into …

Guimarães City Portugal

Today we would be visiting Guimaraes Portugal.  Before we left Australia we were given a choice of two places to visit.  One was Guimaraes Portugal or Quinta da Aveledao. Muriel and I decided on Guimaraes City. We woke up to a wet and very cold day.  My biggest worry was those cobble stones, they can …

Azulejos of Portugal – our attempt at traditional tile painting

  After lunch and a bit of a rest in our room we went up to the lounge to catch up with our fellow travelers. As we were going through the reception our Cruise Director Phillipie with his beaming smile and shinning eyes asked us if we were going to do the Tile Painting.   …

Morning tour of Porto

After a hearty breakfast onboard the Scenic Azure we set of for a Porto Panoramic Tour.  We would take the same roads that we went on the Hop On Hop Off bus the day before but with a very informative commentary.  So much so we told Carla that she should do the commentary for the …

The Hop on Hop off Bus – Porto

After a delicious breakfast at the Sheraton Porto we went to the front desk to organize our tickets for the Hop on Hop off bus.  We chose the Red one as we have found in other cities that one has been the best.  At only $15 euro's each it was quite good.  There were no …

First Day in Porto for the sisters

3 flights and many hours later  we arrived safely in Porto.  Our flights from Australia were ok.  I think I actually slept a bit.  Which is not the normal for me. I flew from Melbourne to Singapore and Muriel from Perth to Singapore.  We then flew from Singapore to Frankfurt.  We had a couple of …

A River Cruise, Why Not!

Have you ever thought of going on a river cruise?  If not why not?  You may very well change your mind once you read this. This cruise would be our fourth river cruise and our first with Scenic. From the moment we stepped on board we knew this cruise was going to be amazing. This …

Tips on traveling with a chronic illness

    In less than 2 weeks Muriel and I will be heading to Europe.  To be more specific Portugal and Spain.  Paula will be home recuperating from a knee replacement. As most of our readers know that I have many chronic illness'.  So  travel takes a bit more effort and forward planning.  I just …

Great Ocean Road

Back in January Muriel, myself, her son Chris and his girlfriend did a two-day trip of the Great Ocean Road here in Victoria. Monday saw the 4 of us line up in Chris's car to board the Ferry from Sorrento to Queenscliff.  The trip takes about 40 mins   The cars line up to board …

Paris on Foot

Armed with a crappy map the cruise ship company provided,  we proceeded to walk back to our ship.  It was berthed right by the Eiffel Tower.  Montmartre to the Eiffel Tower!  On a map it doesn't look that far does it.  Maps are so deceptive. I think we walked more miles than needed, as I …

Montmartre – Artists Village

Montmarte...I fell in love with this bohemian village on our first trip to Paris. A place where poets, artists and writers lived as it was a cheap place to live.  I could imagine sitting in one of the many cafes in a past life writing about the people I saw each day.  Joining me would …

Les Andelys – Water into Wine?

Legend has it, that the workers who were digging the foundations for the Abbey  Of Sainte Clotilde complained they had nothing to drink.  The Queen prayed for water to be turned into wine, the Fountain of Sainte Clotilde flowed with wine.   Apparently, this "miracle" has never happened again.  I can understand that as I …

Happy New Year – 2019

Wow...its 2019 in this part of the world.  A lot of you are still in 2018.  So this year brings a bit of travel for us. A couple of days with my sister Muriel and her son Christopher and his girlfriend.  I have to be quiet where we are going as I don't think Muriel …

Chateau Gaillard – Richard the Lionhearts Castle

Richard the Lionheart - King of England and Duke of Normandy  built Chateau Gaillard in two years!  From 1196 - 1198.  Two Years! It was built to protect both the Seine River and Rouen from the powerful King of France Philippe Auguste.  These two had set out on a crusade to the Holy Land earlier but …

Somme Battlefields – Part 2

Our day wasn't over.  We would visit several more museums and cemeteries.  The magnitude of what these young men went through is overwhelming. Every corner or town square as we drove to our next stop, would be either a small cemetery or memorial to those who fought and lost their lives in this war.    …

Rouen Cathedral of Notre Dame

If you have yet to visit  Rouen in Normandy France perhaps this might entice you to put Rouen on your list.   I still say "pinch me" that we happened to be in Rouen to see it. Every summer between June and September a free Cathedral Light Show takes place in Rouen with dazzling illuminations …

Rouen – A step back in time.

Rouen is the capital of Normandy.  So many famous people had also been to Rouen, Joan of Arc, Gustave Flaubert, Pierre Corneille, William the Conqueror, Claude Monet…of course  those most famous - Muriel and Bree from 3 sistersabroad. (tongue in cheek) We had the whole afternoon and evening to explore Rouen after our trip to …

Anzacs in the Somme Battlefields

On Sunday 11th of November 2018 marked the Anniversary of the 100th year since Germany signed the Armistice to end the Great War. It would be a few days before the guns would fall silent. It wasn't like it is today with a text or a tweet saying "the war is now over" It took …

Missing in Action but Im back Now!

Our wonderful internet here in Australia under the name of NBN or National Broadband Network isn't really wonderful!  Its using the old phone line coming into the house and the wire (not cable) is strung across the street. So when a big truck comes roaring down our street bam!! The line is pulled down.  Last …

Honfleur Normandy

I was so excited to be visiting the seaside port of Honfleur. Was it like the images that are on the internet, would it live up to my expectations? Honfleur such a beautiful place.  “Honfleur is a commune in the Calvados department in northwestern France. It is located on the southern bank of the estuary …

Caudebec-en-Caux

Our cruise ship had docked early in the morning at Caudebec-en-Caux.  Once we had lunch on board after our visit to the Pays d'aude Region we had a free afternoon to explore Caudebec-en-Caux.  It was a Saturday afternoon and most things were closed.  However, we managed to find some very interesting things.   Caudebec-en-Caux during …

Beuvron-en-Auge, Normandy

After our visit to Chateau Le Breuil-en-Auge, our coach stopped for quick visit to Beuvron-en-Auge.  Situated to the west of Lisieux and 25 kilometres east of Caen in the Calvados department of Normandy, Beuvron-en-Auge is one of the most beautiful villages of France. The house's are half-timbered of which Normandy is famous for. The village is small and …

Chateau du Breuil en Auge – A Taste of Normandy

  We visited Chateau Le Breuil en Auge and its famous distillery for tasting of their cider.  Of course we also were able to sample the cheese that is produced  in the area.  Can I just say "thank you to all of those at my table who decided to not try the cheese.  Some were …

Invisible in Melbourne. WHAT’S IT LIKE TO LIVE HERE WITH CHRONIC ILLNESS?

Sheryl from https://www.achronicvoice.com is hosting an Invisible Link Up.  When Sheryl tagged me in this I was like yes please I will do that.  A great way to learn what it is like for others living around the world with a chronic illness.  I have several chronic illness along with a couple of rare diseases.  I have learnt …

A stroll through Giverny France

Giverny is roughly 3 kms from Vernon and only 75 kms from Paris.  So an easy day trip by car or one of the many day tours that go there.  You can also stay in one of the many little "Gites" or B&B's that are in Giverny or Vernon. Giverny is pronounced - Jee-va-nyee.  It is …

The Lady and the Unicorn Tapestries

  Back in April of this year my sister Paula, our niece Penny and myself - Bree went to the exhibition of the The Lady and the Unicorn Tapestries at the Art Gallery of NSW. Designed in Paris around 1500, these tapestries are considered to be some of the greatest surviving masterpieces of medieval European …

Claude Monet’s Garden

Claude Monet's garden and house is in Giverny Normandy.  We have all seen the photos of the garden on the internet, Museums. To actually be there and see all the different colors and flowers is one of the greatest things anyone can do.  At the previous post I said I wasn't into flower arranging but that …

Moving house …

Letting you  all know that Im currently moving house one suburb to another.  We are doing it slow so we don't crash. By late next week as long as internet is connected to the house I will be putting out posts on the last bit of our holiday in Spain, this was completed in April …