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Old 02-10-2012, 11:11 AM   #121
tinkerbelltwins
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good to know -- thanks!
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Old 02-10-2012, 12:01 PM   #122
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Since you asked..... (sorry to hijack your thread!).... our Alaska cruise begins on 8/13 (I started the meet thread for that one too) and we're staying three nights beforehand in Seattle, which is a new place for me and the girls who are eight years old.

In terms of Alaska excursions, I'm a bit uncertain about what to do. One of my DH's obsessions is birding (yes, his face is always turned upwards) so in Juneau, I know he'd love to do the Glacier View Sea Kayaking. We've kayaked with the girls before but there is no way I'd do it with them up in the frigid waters of Alaska. Plus they aren't old enough anyway. So Steve might do that one by himself. But if he doesn't and joins us, I'm interested in the Taku Glacier Lodge Flight and Feast (though that is very pricey and with saving for the Med next year that might get scratched off). Or, there is an Orca Point Lodge salmon feast as a part of the Best of Juneau excursion (that has the whalewatching and the drive to Mendenhall Glacier too). And if we get a 3-port package through Disney it is also part of that bundle.

In Skagway, I think everyone would enjoy the White Pass railway ride with the girls getting to do the youth activity in the private car. But if we don't do that, we might do the Liarsville gold rush camp -- or is it too hokey? They can always pan for gold up near Idaho Springs when we visit my mom who lives in Colorado (where I'm originally from) so not sure that one in Alaska is worth it.

In Ketchikan, I'm looking at the lumberjack show and the potlatch park youth activity. The twins love to go around Epcot getting those masks on sticks colored, so am sure they'd really get into working on a totem pole. Over the MLK holiday we made it into the city to see the National Museum of the American Indian and the girls enjoyed getting to watch native american dancers perform in the atrium. The learned a good deal of history in the process and I'm hoping they'll learn a good bit of history and natural science on some of the excursions too. Was that your experience?

As for Victoria, we are there for such a short time in the evening that we'll probably just walk around, knowing we'll head back there someday to see Butchart Gardens.

That's what I'm thinking. Any advice? What did you do up there on your cruise? I've heard that the kids got to have part of the kids club up on the top deck during the Tracy Arm day. That sounds awesome. But cold, so I'll be doing a good bit of thinking about how to pack for the cruise!
If you can gold pan elsewhere, do so. Wasn't worth it...

I have pics of the totem pole activity, but I'll have to post those tomorrow...I'm getting ready to go to work....

White Pass was beautiful, but we didn't have a "kids activity" on our excursion, so not sure what that is all about.

The Lumberjack show was entertaining, and I really enjoyed Potlach Park. Our tour guide was amazing!

More tomorrow...
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Old 02-11-2012, 01:20 PM   #123
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I hope you have this TR done before my July 13th Med cruise. It'll be our first med cruise but not our first Disney Cruise.
Dee
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Old 02-11-2012, 01:26 PM   #124
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I hope you have this TR done before my July 13th Med cruise. It'll be our first med cruise but not our first Disney Cruise.
Dee
I should! I plan on taking the iPad (the one that hasn't been bought yet...), and with additional sea days, I can't imagine that I can't get some typing in! Pictures might take a bit to be added on, but it'll get there!

I'm contemplating what to write about later...after I pick up DD and her friend from some testing at school. Don't have enough time to start it now, but I think Pompeii is on today's agenda!
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Old 02-11-2012, 03:30 PM   #125
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I should! I plan on taking the iPad (the one that hasn't been bought yet...), and with additional sea days, I can't imagine that I can't get some typing in! Pictures might take a bit to be added on, but it'll get there!

I'm contemplating what to write about later...after I pick up DD and her friend from some testing at school. Don't have enough time to start it now, but I think Pompeii is on today's agenda!
Can't help with Pompeii...didn't go there...I spent that day doing the Amalfi Coast....
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Old 02-11-2012, 06:44 PM   #126
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Naples!

We woke up in the port of Naples to these views:





How terrible, right? We had signed up to go on Timeless Pompeii and the Taste of Sorrento with an 8:45 meet up . We did Taste of Sorrento first, but I'm more inclined to talk about Pompeii first. It. Was. Awesome. I've heard that Herculaneum is supposed to be even better, but there's only so much you can fit in, right?

We took the bus from Sorrento over to Pompeii. The entrance looked like this:



We were doing a DCL tour, and our guide handed out the audio dohickeys..."whisper-lites" or something like that. This is Sean modeling the units:


Please note the thing around his neck and the whatchamacallit in his ear. Did you know I'm not being spellchecked on whatchamacallit? Who knew?

It was really, really hot that day. The navigator has printed that the high that day was to be 93 degrees! DD was rather cranky, until, as I previously mentioned, I started talking about all the dead people:



Morbid? Absolutely! But it worked and she actually started paying attention. The picture above is a casting of the original finding of...what...compressed ash? There are so many more pictures I could put up here, but they are so sad. There's one of a dog and a child together....

Look at the urns:



So, continuing on! The world's original pizza oven:



How cool is that!! In many of these ruins, you're told this was x and that was y, but this you can actually see and figure out!

There were many of these:



Look how bright those colors are! 2000 year later!



Cute as she is look at the road to the right of DD....and the fountain she's leaning on.





After our tour, we got the opportunity to stop for some gelato or something to drink. There were some street vendors and I looked around. I was looking for a book of some sort about the history of Naples. The guy that was at one of the tables pointed me in the direction of a small book/dvd combo that had pages that show what the ruins look like today, then had a plastic overlay that you could place on top to get the perspective on how things look today. If I can take some good pics of it, I'll post those up later.

Next up: Sorrento!
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Old 02-11-2012, 08:05 PM   #127
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So while Minnie was on her Pompeii and Sorrento tour, we took a tour of a different nature - we did Sorrento and the Amalfi Coast with the Disney kids activity. First, let me say, Sorrento is one of the most awesome towns I have ever been to. It's gorgeous. Little shops, gelato stores (yum), lemons. We even intersected with Minnie's tour while we were there...here's some shots



While in Sorrento, we got some free time to look around while the kids made pizza


We then got on a bus and drove down the Amalfi Coast. I have to say there is no more beautiful scenery in the world, but the drive on a bus is a bit scary. Very curvy thin roads. In some instances we had to have cars back up so we could fit through.



Positano

The last town we went to and got to explore was Amalfi - really beautiful we were glad we were on an air conditioned bus because as Minnie said it was hot that day.



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Old 02-11-2012, 09:40 PM   #128
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I found the book I got in Naples and took a few pics. Sorry for the glare, but it was hard to get good lighting:





and now with the layover:



And the pizza oven:



and now again with the layover:



The other book I found was the Rick Steves' guide books of Cinque Terre and Barcelona that I got bound together after eliminating the stuff I didn't need:







Much easier than 2 books, IMO.
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Old 02-11-2012, 09:47 PM   #129
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We then got on a bus and drove down the Amalfi Coast. I have to say there is no more beautiful scenery in the world, but the drive on a bus is a bit scary. Very curvy thin roads. In some instances we had to have cars back up so we could fit through.


I tried putting in my photobucket pictures - and it didn't work...so after some consulting with my advisor - I will add them soon.
LOL! Tech support by text message!

So, I was watching the Rick Steves video the other day and learned that the tour buses can only go one direction down the scenic highway! Makes sense with them being so very narrow! But as a result, nearly every tourist on a bus ride ends up with this amazing vista:



I get so excited every time I see this on TV. I"VE BEEN THERE!!!!! And it is just soooooooo beautiful!
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Old 02-11-2012, 09:56 PM   #130
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!

So, I was watching the Rick Steves video the other day and learned that the tour buses can only go one direction down the scenic highway! Makes sense with them being so very narrow! But as a result, nearly every tourist on a bus ride ends up with this amazing vista:

!
That is correct...i forgot to say that...we actually could only drive one way...we went back to Naples via highway...
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Old 02-12-2012, 07:02 AM   #131
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Kim and Mindy, I love all of your pictures! Thanks for your advice on Alaska. Looks like panning for gold won't be happening for us up there in the frigid north! We'll wait and pan for it when we visit Gram in Colorado.

BTW: if you go over to the July 13 Med thread check out post 1. A talented person over on the creative design thread named Dom13 made a super cool itinerary design for us. It could be easily modified by him for your trip as all he would need to do is change the July date to June (since we're headed to the same ports!). I'm sure he won't mind if you ask him nicely!

Beth

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Old 02-12-2012, 08:03 AM   #132
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I'm enjoying your report. We're sailing June 15th 2013. Can't wait.
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Old 02-12-2012, 08:15 AM   #133
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Kim and Mindy, I love all of your pictures! Thanks for your advice on Alaska. Looks like panning for gold won't be happening for us up there in the frigid north! We'll wait and pan for it when we visit Gram in Colorado.

BTW: if you go over to the July 13 Med thread check out post 1. A talented person over on the creative design thread named Dom13 made a super cool itinerary design for us. It could be easily modified by him for your trip as all he would need to do is change the July date to June (since we're headed to the same ports!). I'm sure he won't mind if you ask him nicely!

Beth
No problem Beth...I'm actually getting more excited for this trip by reading what Kim's written and adding my stuff. I think she knew that would get me, that's why she started this
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Old 02-12-2012, 08:16 AM   #134
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I'm enjoying your report. We're sailing June 15th 2013. Can't wait.
We're sailing on that cruise as well. Have you joined the cruise meet thread?
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Old 02-12-2012, 08:21 AM   #135
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We're sailing on that cruise as well. Have you joined the cruise meet thread?
I have joined the thread. Can't wait to meet all of you. I'm sailing as an adult with my mom to Europe. Always been a dream to do that.
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