12 Hours in San Juan, Puerto Rico Part 2: From Boricua to Mofongo

After Tarzan-ing through Puerto Rico’s tropical forest, we freshened up on the ship and headed back out into the city of San Juan. We opted out of a ship excursion because we craved an authentic feel for the place. But we’d already discovered that the guidebooks we bought were lacking in any real content, context,…

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12 Hours in San Juan, Puerto Rico Part 1: Welcome to the Jungle

Sunscreen: check. Bathing suit: check. Eager-beaver attitude: check. Our first port was calling our name, and I, for one, was ready to hit the beach and take in a year’s supply of Vitamin D in the form of Caribbean afternoon sunshine. As we packed our day bags with our necessary gear, a husky Italian voice…

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On the Good Ship…

After an exhaustive search for just the right cruise for our family vacation, we settled on a small cruise ship (450 passengers) that went to Eastern Caribbean ports that enticed us; provided enough variety for dining, entertainment, and activities; and included everything from great accommodations, all drinks, and specialty dining to round-trip airfare, transfers, shore…

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New York, NY Part 6: Where the Past Meets the Present

Our last day in New York granted me and Rick some much-welcomed alone time; Jackie, Linda, and Caleigh had returned home, Nikki was off to Vienna, and Andy caught up on some sleep. The early morning was crisp, and our heavy coats, gloves, and hats were little match for the windy chill off the Hudson…

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Cultural Eye-candy in St. Petersburg

“Dobryy den’,” I said to the Dorothy Hamill-coiffed customs agent.  I was eager to practice the little Russian I knew.  She must not have heard me because she didn’t respond to my greeting.  “Dobryy den’,” I repeated, this time with a smile.  Maybe I was pronouncing it wrong.  The third time I wished her good…

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Scandinavian Slices of Life

Leaving our ship that morning in Stockholm–and leaving 3000 tourists–Rick Steves and I found ourselves alone in the middle of a great city with only 5 hours until we needed to be back on the ship.  Abba, the harbor walk, the National Gallery, Swedish meatballs…how would we pack all the experiences into our memory banks…

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Cruising? Why?

In doing research for his newest guidebook, Northern European Cruise Ports, Rick Steves’ primary task is to double-check and update logistical and sightseeing information in port:  how to you get from the ship terminal to the city center, what are the operating hours for TIs/museums/churches, what’s new, what’s no longer around, and how do you…

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