PORT OF CIVITAVECCHIA, ROME. The cruise begins, went through the regular custom clearance, heart beating with anticipation of new discoveries…then behold the Celebrity Cruises, my abode for the next 14 days! She is magnificent, I was overwhelmed by her beauty.
Within was fantasy,a palace on floating water……activities abound, excellent service….this was worth all the investment, physical and spiritual food.
Our sail schedule was Naples, Jerusalem, Turkey, Greece, Malta, and disembarkation in Rome.
SORENTO, NAPLES– We arrived at Naples, boarded our tour buses to Sorento. This is a coastal Town atop the cliff overlooking the Mediterranean. We went to a traditional farm yard built in the early 19th century. The main export was Olive oil.
We progressed to Piazza Tasso, a cafe lined popular street. This was the traditional Italian homestead.
We set sail at sea for two days arriving Ashdod Port, Jerusalem.
JERUSALEM– The Holy Land and the foundation of Christianity. This was the most anticipated journey of all. With tight security around due to the tension of Israel and its neighbors, unperturbed we continued with our tour to the WESTERN WALL or KOTEL.
It was built in 19BC, located in the Old city by Herod, the Great. We inserted our hand written prayer request in the cracks of the wall. We were addressed by the Mayor of Jerusalem who gave us a brief history of this revered temple.
It was followed by a reception party in the evening with Hebrew fanfare and traditional cuisine.
MASADA– We visited this jewish fortress atop the plateau overlooking the Dead Sea and the Judean Desert. It was a an enclave protecting the jews from the invading Romans. But rather than be captured as slaves, they committed sucide leaving behind a woman and her five children. It is also a place for the Israeli military rehearsals.
This is the wonders of nature and a sight to behold. It is a saline lake with no living thing in its waters. It allows for floating and hence nothing sinks. We had recreation here where there are Spa houses using the natural mud from the dead sea as cosmetics. Its primary inflow is the Jordan River.