Adriatic Odyssey: Small vs. Large on the Adriatic

KOTOR, Montenegro – David and Goliath come to mind as we sit on our puny 177-foot three-masted yacht overshadowed by a humongous 5000-passenger cruise ship docked beside us in Corfu. Everyone on board our relatively insignificant vessel has something bad to say about the big bully ship and good about ours – especially as we sail toward Kotor, knowing that it will be much easier for our boat to maneuver the incredibly beautiful entrance into the town, …

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Adriatic Odyssey: Achilles Slept Here

CORFU, Greece – There’s an old tradition on this island: To marry a man from Corfu, a woman must spend a year in the house of her future mother-in-law. If she can still smile after this experience, she’ll make a good wife. A challenge, admittedly. But if it meant I could live the rest of my life on Corfu, I just might be able to manage it. What a special island this is. Wandering through the town …

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Adriatic Odyssey: Albania-Sunbathing beside ancient history

SARANDA, Albania –  How often can you put your towel down on a sunbathing beach next to the remains of an ancient Roman portico, circa 2nd Century A.D? We did that today and it was the perfect symbol of a country that boasts the ruins of past civilizations at every turn. Albania is a living museum.  It’s also a country on the verge of becoming a delightful destination for travelers in search of new opportunities for cultural …

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Adriatic Odyssey: When There Is No Doctor In The House

BAR, Montenegro – What do you do when you’re cruising on a small ship without a doctor in the middle of the Adriatic — somewhere between Korcula, Croatia, and Bar, Montenegro — and you wake up with a pain on the left side of your lower back that might be more than just a pulled muscle? Oh yes, and you have 10 more days before you’ll be anywhere near Massachusetts General Hospital and your Boston home? I …

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Adriatic Odyssey: A stop in Korcula

KORCULA, Croatia – “I have bad news and good news,” announced cruise co-ordinator Ninna Durinec after breakfast as we began the first full day of our Adriatic cruise. “The bad news is that we will not be able to make a swim stop this morning because of the rainy weather. The good news is that we are now cruising fully by sail.” The captain had promised that the crew would wake us up to watch the sunrise. …

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Adriatic Odyssey: A day in Dubrovnik, the “Pearl of the Adriatic”

DUBROVNIK, Croatia – There is a mass of tourists here in late June. Surprisingly, however, few of them are Americans. That may be because today — more than two decades after the last bomb dropped in the Croatian War of Independence — there are still no direct flights from the United States to Dubrovnik. It’s hard to get here. (One of the first Americans we met today after boarding our sail cruiser was still looking for her …

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Adriatic Odyssey: preparing to explore the Adriatic aboard AdventureSmith Exploration’s Panorama

I’m going on a mystery cruise next week. It’s not a game, and it’s not a mystery to the captain, but of the seven ports where we’ll stop, I’ve never heard of four of them. Korcula? Budva? Paxos Island? Kotor? Saranda? So why did I agree to hop on the three-masted sail cruiser “Panorama,” and spend eight days exploring these unheard-of cities and islands? Because this is an Adriatic cruise – and AdventureSmith Explorations, which calls the …

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Into the Wilderness With AdventureSmith Explorations

I recently had a conversation with Todd Smith, the President and Founder of AdventureSmith Explorations; the company has been of interest to me for some time due to its focus on sustainable tourism and a commitment to the communities and the environments they visit. Among their most impressive achievements is the implementation of their Carbon Free Cruising campaign, which offsets all carbon emissions created as a result of their passenger’s expeditions.  AdventureSmith has partnered with both local …

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