You haven't heard from me for a while because we decided to take an unplugged vacation (although I did catch my husband trying to get on the wi-fi from his phone in a few places). Destination: a Disney cruise to the Mediterranean (major plus: we have a 3-year-old, and they offer FREE babysitting).
We've never really been into guided tours and touristy souvenirs, but hey, when in Rome. (Which is actually one of the places we didn't go, this time.)
First stop: Malta and blue grottoes. (Yep, they exist!)
Spent the day on a sailboat, and swimming in the beautiful blue water. We even saw an ice cream boat!
Next we went to Tunisia, first to the ruins of Carthage.
And then to a Tunisian bazaar. We actually lost our tour guide in the labyrinth of colorful shops (where we didn't buy anything, as the prices were exorbitant -- guessing they were "cruise special" prices).
I liked this view from the rooftop. Aside from the craziness of the bazaar, it was pretty quiet in Tunis, possibly because we were there during Ramadan.
Next up was the stop I was most eagerly awaiting: hiking up Mount Vesuvius, and touring the ruins of Pompeii. Here you can see the volcano 7 miles in the distance.
I was drawn (as always) to what was the fresh market, which still has beautiful paintings on the walls.
From TV specials I guess, I expected to see more scenes like this, but there were very few. Which makes sense--they deserve to rest in peace.
Instead of trying a mad-dash day trip to Rome, we toured an olive oil farm near Tuscany. While there was less detail on the actual farming, and more bread/wine/cheese/prosciutto tasting than we expected (not a complaint!) it was quite beautiful. There were grapes growing on the porch of the house.
While in Italy we also visited Cinque Terre by boat. It is a beautiful rocky island, with little villages that look like this:
I love how everyone hangs their laundry out the windows. A few more scenes from a quaint little village/vacation spot.
Our last stop was Corsica, where we didn't plan anything. We just got on a train and went a couple stops over into Nice, where these little candies caught my eye. They were so realistic.
Then we enjoyed an afternoon at the beach. Personally I liked the more rustic Cinque Terre better; Corsica seems a bit more posh.
There's nothing like looking at the ocean to make you feel small. View from the room.
We ended our adventure back in Barcelona, but La Boqueria deserves its own post. More soon!