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Grand Circle Cruise aboard M/V Athena: Meet the ship captain who is living his dream

ABOARD THE M/V ATHENA – When Luksa Ivancic was a little boy growing up on the coast of Croatia, he would admire the sea captains and think about what it would be like to sail the world on some grand ship. How he would love to follow in their footsteps. “They wore uniforms with those […]

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Grand Circle Cruise aboard M/V Athena: Going through Corinth Canal, traveler cuts trip short

ABOARD THE M/V ATHENA – First day on the M/V Athena and we cruised through the historic Corinth Canal which is not passable for larger ships. It was a nice scenic ride through high limestone walls. We also had one of our passengers decide to forego the rest of our journey and return home. First, […]

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Viking announces world cruise for fourth ship

With just days before its second ship, Viking Sea, is christened in Greenwich on the Thames River in London on May 5, Viking Ocean Cruises® today announced that its fourth ship, Viking Sun, will spend her maiden season sailing the company’s first-ever World Cruise, spanning 141 days and visiting five continents, 35 countries and 66 […]

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Carnival Corporation arrives in Havana to complete historic voyage from U.S. to Cuba

Carnival Corporation & plc sailed into Havana Monday morning completing the first leg of its historic inaugural voyage to Cuba that began on May 1, 2016, from Miami. The company’s 10th and newest brand, Fathom, made history today with its arrival into Havana, marking the first time in over 50 years that a U.S. cruise […]

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Grand Circle Cruise aboard M/V Athena: Boarding ship for cruise is a breeze

ABOARD THE M/V ATHENA – We stepped off our tour bus, walked a few steps down a gang plank and were officially embarked on our 10-day cruise aboard the M/V Athena. I’ve never met a ship I didn’t like but I certainly prefer the boarding process on smaller vessels. Instead of waiting in long lines […]

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Gems of Southeast Europe cruise day 7: Beautiful Bucharest still struggles to recover from communism

ABOARD THE AMASONATA- As we cruised south toward the Black Sea from Budapest this week it was obvious to us that all of the cities we visited along the way are still suffering in a variety of ways the effects of communism and multiple wars, and are still in transition to normal democratic life. We […]

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Grand Circle Cruise aboard M/V Athena: Guards at Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Athens

ATHENS, Greece – The guards at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Athens looked impressive enough with their ramrod posture and straight-ahead stare. But when the two Greek soldiers started moving, it was obvious these men were self disciplined almost beyond belief. After a restful night and breakfast at St. George Lycabettus Hotel, we […]

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Gems of Southeast Europe cruise day 6: Off the beaten track in Vidin, Bulgaria

ABOARD THE AMASONATA – It is Saturday, so it must be Bulgaria. And if you didn’t happen to see a sign informing you that, you could tell by the way the locals here answer your questions.  If they nod their head up and down, it means “No.”  If side to side, “Yes.”  Just the opposite […]

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Grand Circle Cruise aboard M/V Athena: First day in Athens, Greece

ATHENS, Greece – What a perfect beginning to my trip with Grand Circle Cruise Line. On my first night in Greece, I had dinner almost in the shadow of the Acropolis. After flying from Indianapolis to Newark to Frankfurt to Athens, I was met yesterday at the airport by a Grand Circle representative who loaded […]

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Fathom’s Adonia Sets Sail on Inaugural to Cuba

Fathom’s Adonia Sets Sail on Inaugural to Cuba…the first cruise ship to sail from the United States to Cuba in 50 years. The ship left the Port of Miami at 4:15 today, 1 May 2016, for a one week cruise around Cuba.  

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Gems of Southeast Europe cruise day 5: In Romania, it feels like Norway

ABOARD THE AMASONATA – For those who take a cruise for the scenery, today was the highlight of the week.  Instead of cities and wineries and fortresses and war monuments, we are heading into the “Iron Gates,” the most spectacular section of the Danube River. The Iron Gates are a beautiful set of gorges with […]

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Gems of Southeast Europe cruise day 4: A 30-year Building Project Promises Hope to Belgrade

ABOARD THE AMASONATA – One would think that Belgrade, a city that has been destroyed no less than 40 times over its 2300- year lifetime, might give up and call it quits. To some extent it looks like it has. It’s not a pretty town. Passengers on our riverboat did not sign up for this […]

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Gems of Southeast Europe Cruise day 3: Along the Danube: Many Languages, Many Conflicts

ABOARD THE AMASONATA – The 49-member crew of this Danube-floating riverboat represents a mini-United Nations. In total, there are:  twenty Romanians, seven Hungarians, seven Bulgarians, two Filipinos, six Serbians, two Croatians, two Bosnia-Herzegovanians — and four crew members from distant Indonesia (including the chef). And they all get along swimmingly. Which is not the case […]

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