Shore Excursions – Timor Sea Justice http://timorseajustice.org/ Thu, 22 Jul 2021 08:28:45 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.8 https://timorseajustice.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/06/icon-7-1.png Shore Excursions – Timor Sea Justice http://timorseajustice.org/ 32 32 Return to cruise on Crystal Serenity – Milford-Orange Times https://timorseajustice.org/return-to-cruise-on-crystal-serenity-milford-orange-times/ https://timorseajustice.org/return-to-cruise-on-crystal-serenity-milford-orange-times/#respond Thu, 22 Jul 2021 00:03:51 +0000 https://timorseajustice.org/return-to-cruise-on-crystal-serenity-milford-orange-times/ Return to cruise on Crystal Serenity – Milford-Orange TimesBy Karen Quinn Panzer Travel questions Karen quinn panzer On July 3, my husband and I took our first cruise in 18 months on Crystal Serenity, a luxury cruise ship, sailing from Nassau, Bahamas, Great Exuma, San Salvador and Long Island. Some of these islands had never seen a visiting cruise ship before. We followed […]]]> Return to cruise on Crystal Serenity – Milford-Orange Times

By Karen Quinn Panzer
Travel questions

Karen quinn panzer

On July 3, my husband and I took our first cruise in 18 months on Crystal Serenity, a luxury cruise ship, sailing from Nassau, Bahamas, Great Exuma, San Salvador and Long Island. Some of these islands had never seen a visiting cruise ship before.

We followed the new COVID-19 protocols which made us feel safe but never hindered our enjoyment of the experience. This navigation was for fully vaccinated guests only and we had to undergo a rapid (free) antigen test just to make sure we were negative for COVID before boarding the ship. Upon arrival we had a full Junkanoo greeting: a local Bahamian street parade with music, dancing and costumes.

Here are some tips based on our experience.

Be flexible. Originally, we were supposed to make our first stop on Bimini, but since there have been recent spikes in COVID on this island, the stop has been canceled. Safety always comes first. Instead, we spent a day at sea and Crystal compensated us with a bonus onboard credit to spend. With $ 180 spending money and two dozen things to do on board, we had a great time exploring the ship and relaxing. I enjoyed golf lessons with a pro, tasting it at Palm Court with musicians and watching a movie in the cinema for the first time in 16 months. Our friend even won $ 650 at the slot machines.

Be adventurous. As we return to all of these beautiful destinations, people are working hard to provide the services offered before COVID. For example, on our Bahamas cruise, they are fine-tuning transit options and reopening things like beach clubs. On some islands, we were the first cruise ship to be there, and we bid because there was no established dock for a cruise ship.

Being adventurous had its rewards. We went to three of the purest turquoise water beaches we have ever seen in Exuma, San Salvador and Long Island.

Be patient. As we return to cruising and international travel, we have to be patient with the new protocols and forms that we have to present on arrival. Vaccinated travel is a reality in many countries. Each country has its own form to fill out (your agent can advise you).

For the Bahamas, download your Centers for Disease Control vaccination card and answer questions about your proximity to COVID-19 on the Bahamas Travel Health Visa site. Show your “visa” before boarding the plane to the Bahamas. A $ 40 fee also gives you travel protection if you need to stay longer. You can also purchase your COVID-19 rapid antigen test from this site for your return to the United States, performed on board, with negative results downloaded to your phone. Easy.

Reward: The beauty and serenity of the Bahamas.

Karen Quinn-Panzer is the owner and vacation specialist at Dream Vacations Quinn Panzer Travel in Milford.


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Cruise lines navigate complex rules as Alaska crossings resume from Seattle https://timorseajustice.org/cruise-lines-navigate-complex-rules-as-alaska-crossings-resume-from-seattle/ https://timorseajustice.org/cruise-lines-navigate-complex-rules-as-alaska-crossings-resume-from-seattle/#respond Tue, 20 Jul 2021 03:05:00 +0000 https://timorseajustice.org/cruise-lines-navigate-complex-rules-as-alaska-crossings-resume-from-seattle/ It’s a sight Seattle hasn’t seen in a while: queues of vacationers at Pier 91, many dressed in Hawaiian shirts, bobs and sunglasses, with suitcases and smiles. The Majestic Princess floats to their left, the Serenade of the Seas to the right. Under sunny skies, the season’s first cruise to Alaska – and the first […]]]>

It’s a sight Seattle hasn’t seen in a while: queues of vacationers at Pier 91, many dressed in Hawaiian shirts, bobs and sunglasses, with suitcases and smiles. The Majestic Princess floats to their left, the Serenade of the Seas to the right.

Under sunny skies, the season’s first cruise to Alaska – and the first since the start of the pandemic – set sail on Monday as Royal Caribbean’s Serenade of the Seas departed on a seven-night trip.

Cruise’s long-awaited return to Seattle continues this month as six other cruise lines resume operations, including Seattle-based Holland America Line and Princess Cruises. Starting Friday, ships will leave Seattle almost daily for the remainder of the month. In August, some days will see two departures.


“We have now been waiting for two years to go to Alaska,” said Peter Dorney, 52, one of the first people to line up with his wife, Kathy, 51, while waiting to board the Serenade on Monday morning. . The Massachusetts couple are celebrating their 25th anniversary this year and Dorney said they’ve been on more than 20 cruises. “We are frequent cruisers.”

Peter and Kathy Dorney of Massachusetts are frequent cruisers.  On Monday, they checked in for an Alaska cruise on Serenade of the Seas at Terminal 91 in Seattle.  (Ellen M. Banner / The Seattle Times)


But Monday’s resumption also highlights the complexities of cruising through the current stage of the global pandemic. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is asking cruise lines to decide whether they will require 95% of a ship’s passengers to be vaccinated, which will qualify them as a “vaccinated cruise.” Based on this decision, there are guidelines for mask use, social distancing, and testing.

Royal Caribbean has chosen not to meet the 95% threshold for Serenade of the Seas crossings. This does not mean that the guests are not vaccinated; in fact, anyone eligible for a vaccine must have received one.

The nuance in Royal Caribbean’s decision lies in the cruise line’s decision to accept unvaccinated children under the age of 12, who are not yet eligible for the vaccine in the United States. Few other ships allow the embarkation of unvaccinated children.

For a trip to be considered a “vaccinated cruise,” the CDC requires that 95% of passengers and also 95% of the crew be fully vaccinated 14 days before boarding.

On these cruises, fully vaccinated passengers do not need to wear masks anywhere. They don’t need to maintain social distancing. There is no requirement for testing.

A passenger sorts her COVID-19 vaccination card and passport before checking in for her Alaska cruise on Monday.  Cruise lines vary on how they handle vaccination status.  (Ellen M. Banner / The Seattle Times)


The CDC also says crew members who are fully vaccinated do not need to wear masks. However, most cruise lines leaving Seattle require crew members to wear them, at least for initial trips.

“You sort of have collective immunity on board,” said Gus Antorcha, president of Holland America Line. “On board, it’s like a bubble.

The alternative, or the decision not to require a high vaccination rate for passengers and crew, requires all guests and crew to wear masks indoors, except in designated “vaccinated areas” , where only vaccinated guests are allowed.

Most of the ships leaving Seattle continue on the “vaccinated cruise” route. This includes Holland America’s NieuwAmsterdam, the majestic princess of Princess Cruises and the carnival miracle.

Although the Serenade of the Seas does not cross the 95% vaccination threshold, the cruise line still requires passengers 16 years of age and older to be vaccinated. In August, it will require vaccines for passengers 12 and older. All crew members are fully vaccinated.

The Serenade of the Seas is in Terminal 91 early in the day on Monday.  As Alaska cruises resume from Seattle, cruise lines and passengers must navigate a maze of regulations to ensure the health and safety of passengers.  (Ellen M. Banner / The Seattle Times)


Jay Schneider, director of product innovation at Royal Caribbean Group, said the decision to allow unvaccinated children on board – thus preventing the ship from reaching the 95% immunization threshold – was largely taken to maintain the brand’s focus on family travel.

Royal Caribbean still simulates the ‘vaccinated cruise’ experience in many areas of the ship, especially those where children are not otherwise allowed. This includes the casino, specific dining rooms, pubs, lounges, and certain events where patrons can stay maskless inside.

For Princess Cruises, it was “absolutely tortured” to decide not to allow unvaccinated children on board, said Lisa Syme, vice president of Princess who has worked at the company for 38 years. Especially considering the cruise line’s efforts over the past few years to be a family-oriented brand, “this has been heartbreaking for us.”

For unvaccinated passengers, some previous precautions instituted during the pandemic remain.

They must be tested for the coronavirus in port before boarding the ship. For trips longer than four days, they must be retested upon return prior to disembarking, per CDC guidelines.

Royal Caribbean will place unvaccinated passengers on specific shore excursions when exploring destinations. Holland America requires unvaccinated passengers – who will not be children, but rather people with medical exceptions – to do the same and wear a mask almost all the time inside the ship, except when eating.

Bhupesh Singh, 44, who was aboard the Serenade of the Seas on Monday with his wife, Hansi, and their two unvaccinated children – both under the age of 12 – said he felt comfortable with approach to Royal Caribbean, even with the extra precautions it would have to take when traveling with children. He noted that he took his family on a cruise from Seattle, where Royal Caribbean at least requires all adults to be vaccinated. In Florida, where it comes from, it is not.

The reduced capacity aboard the Serenade of the Seas was also encouraging for Singh. Royal Caribbean declined to say exactly how many passengers it will have on board, but said it would be “much less” than full capacity, which is typically around 2,500. Holland America and Princess Cruises have said they will start their Alaska cruises at around 60% capacity, gradually increasing over the season.

Some cruise lines will also use technology to locate passengers. Royal Caribbean will use “wristbands” or bracelets that passengers must wear to be tracked on board. Princess Cruises will use lockets, portable devices used for various functions aboard the ship, which will keep a log of who the passengers come into contact with.

Physically, cruise lines claim that the layout of the ships remains almost identical to what passengers are used to. Royal Caribbean’s Serenade of the Seas will space the dining tables and casino machines. Holland America and Princess Cruises have said their companies have no plans to make such changes.

All cruise lines claim to have made significant improvements to their HVAC systems, investing heavily in air filtration systems that bring in fresh air and do not recirculate the air on the ship. And they’re touting their new cleaning protocols, which they say are more thorough and hygienic than ever before.

Cruise lines should consider the delta variant, Janet said base player, professor of epidemiology in the School of Public Health at the University of Washington. The variant is more contagious than its predecessors and has again increased coronavirus infections nationwide, increasing the chances that a passenger could contract the delta variant. The risk is also likely to increase if cruise ships have older passengers on board.

Baseman added that cruise ships had “a known history of infectious disease outbreaks” even before the coronavirus pandemic, given that a fixed group of people mix closely with each other.

Despite his concerns, Baseman said the plans outlined by the cruises departing from Seattle – with their required high vaccination rates – were consistent with plans to reopen the rest of the United States. “It’s hard for me to think of what more they could do. “

She said that if she found herself in an environment where she knew for sure that at least 95% of people around her were fully vaccinated, she would feel comfortable removing her mask indoors, as long as ‘she had no symptoms.

Regardless of cruise line policy, “people should be aware of themselves and they should take their own precautions,” Singh said.

When asked if he’s worried about the delta variant, Dorney said, “That’s going to be what it is… just take whatever precautions you can take and then, you know, live your life.”


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Windstar resumes its cruises in Tahiti https://timorseajustice.org/windstar-resumes-its-cruises-in-tahiti/ https://timorseajustice.org/windstar-resumes-its-cruises-in-tahiti/#respond Mon, 19 Jul 2021 12:43:20 +0000 https://timorseajustice.org/windstar-resumes-its-cruises-in-tahiti/ Windstar Cruises resumed its cruise this week in French Polynesia / Tahiti Islands with vaccinated guests + crew aboard the Wind Spirit sailboat with 148 passengers on the line. Half of the line’s six-yacht fleet is now back in boating cruising. To celebrate Wind Spirit’s return, the line added free drinks to its already tempting […]]]>

Windstar Cruises resumed its cruise this week in French Polynesia / Tahiti Islands with vaccinated guests + crew aboard the Wind Spirit sailboat with 148 passengers on the line. Half of the line’s six-yacht fleet is now back in boating cruising.

To celebrate Wind Spirit’s return, the line added free drinks to its already tempting bundle prices. Windstar offers a convenient Air + Hotel package from Los Angeles International Airport that includes Air Tahiti Nui roundtrip flight from Los Angeles, pre-cruise accommodations and a post-cruise day room, land transfers to Tahiti and a seven to ten trip or 11 night boutique cruise in French Polynesia. Now on cruise vacation, including plane and hotel booked during the promotional period ending July 30, 2021, guests also receive the promise of a complimentary drink package (with an unlimited selection of spirits, wines, of beers, cocktails and items from the minibar), guaranteeing Tai or three under a palm tree. If guests don’t soak up, they can alternatively choose an onboard credit to be spent on other experiences, such as a relaxing onboard spa treatment or shore excursions such as scuba diving, snorkeling in the reefs or even the harvest of Tahitian black pearls.

Windstar typically sails year-round from Tahiti, where cruises take place on Wind Spirit, a 148-passenger motorized sailboat specially designed for the region and capturing the South Pacific trade winds in its billowing sails.

However, Windstar’s completely redesigned new Star Breeze yacht, carrying 312 guests, will begin sailing in the region on September 19 and will remain on a limited engagement in Tahiti until March 2022, offering guests a unique chance to sail the most large, plus yacht-intensive amenity in gracious 277-square-foot ocean-view suites. Windstar offers a free private event on its Tahiti cruises: a private beach party and a local feast on one of Bora Bora’s tiny motus, followed by a kinetic fire dance performance. It is available on all departures / both yachts.


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Regent Seven Seas Cruises $ 73,000 Sells In Under 3 Hours https://timorseajustice.org/regent-seven-seas-cruises-73000-sells-in-under-3-hours/ https://timorseajustice.org/regent-seven-seas-cruises-73000-sells-in-under-3-hours/#respond Sat, 17 Jul 2021 16:57:55 +0000 https://timorseajustice.org/regent-seven-seas-cruises-73000-sells-in-under-3-hours/ A cruise with fares starting at $ 73,499 sold out in less than three hours on Wednesday. Regent Seven Seas Cruises went on sale for World Cruise 2024 tickets around 8:30 a.m. EST Wednesday. They sold out around 11 a.m., according to a company statement. Rates were as high as $ 199,999 per guest for […]]]>


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Cruise Line Celebrates Connection to City’s Naval History as New Ship Makes Inaugural Stop at ‘Delighted’ Portsmouth International Port https://timorseajustice.org/cruise-line-celebrates-connection-to-citys-naval-history-as-new-ship-makes-inaugural-stop-at-delighted-portsmouth-international-port/ https://timorseajustice.org/cruise-line-celebrates-connection-to-citys-naval-history-as-new-ship-makes-inaugural-stop-at-delighted-portsmouth-international-port/#respond Thu, 15 Jul 2021 16:04:37 +0000 https://timorseajustice.org/cruise-line-celebrates-connection-to-citys-naval-history-as-new-ship-makes-inaugural-stop-at-delighted-portsmouth-international-port/ The Borealis, the newest addition to Fred. The Olsen cruise line fleet made its first stop at Portsmouth International Port today. A plaque was exchanged between the port and the ship to commemorate the occasion. Peter Deer, Managing Director of Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines, said: “This summer has been a year of many firsts for […]]]>

The Borealis, the newest addition to Fred. The Olsen cruise line fleet made its first stop at Portsmouth International Port today.

A plaque was exchanged between the port and the ship to commemorate the occasion.

Peter Deer, Managing Director of Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines, said: “This summer has been a year of many firsts for us as we sail with two new ships to the fleet, and we are truly delighted that Borealis is making its first port of call in Portsmouth with us today.

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Today, Portsmouth International Port welcomed Fred.  Borealis from Olsen Cruise Line for the first time, which is one of their most recent additions to their fleet.  Photo: Andrew Sassoli-Walker
Today, Portsmouth International Port welcomed Fred. Borealis from Olsen Cruise Line for the first time, which is one of their most recent additions to their fleet. Photo: Andrew Sassoli-Walker

‘Chez Fred. Olsen, the maritime is in our DNA which makes the historic naval town of Portsmouth the perfect choice for us.

“We know our customers will love discovering all that Portsmouth has to offer on their shore excursions with us, and we look forward to sharing the experience with many other customers over the coming weeks.”

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Portsmouth Forecast: Exact time for which the temperatures will be hottest in town, G …

Borealis, which has a capacity of less than 1,400 guests, was given a name that previously attributed to a ship owned by Olsen in the 1940s.

An exchange of plates between the port and the ship took place earlier today. From left to right: Steffan Ravneng (Borealis Staff Captain), Jozo Glavic (Borealis Captain), Mike Sellers (Port Manager, Portsmouth International Port), Ian Diaper, (COO, Portsmouth International Port) , Ben McInnes (Harbor Master, Portsmouth International), Andrew Williamson (Head of Passenger Operations, Portsmouth International) Photo: Andrew Sassoli-Walker

The international port of Portsmouth will also host Fred. Balmoral in Olsen in the winter of 2022 for a program of rotating cruises to European destinations.

Ian Diaper, Port Operations Manager, said: “We are delighted to welcome Fred. Olsen’s new Borealis ship for cruise stopovers this summer.

“Guests will have the most enviable views on board as they sail through our spectacular harbor, on a long overdue cruise.

“We are looking forward to working with Fred. Olsen in the coming months, including turnaround cruises aboard sister ship Balmoral in the winter of 2022.

A message from the editor, Mark Waldron


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Saint Lucia predicts strong tourist arrivals – NationNews Barbados – nationnews.com https://timorseajustice.org/saint-lucia-predicts-strong-tourist-arrivals-nationnews-barbados-nationnews-com/ https://timorseajustice.org/saint-lucia-predicts-strong-tourist-arrivals-nationnews-barbados-nationnews-com/#respond Thu, 15 Jul 2021 13:00:50 +0000 https://timorseajustice.org/saint-lucia-predicts-strong-tourist-arrivals-nationnews-barbados-nationnews-com/ Posted on July 15, 2021 The Pitons, Saint Lucia. (DEPOSIT) CASTRIES – The Saint Lucia Tourism Authority (SLTA) predicted a “very strong” month for tourist arrivals here on Wednesday after the island saw an increase of more than 34% in arrivals. SLTA said that as the tourism economy continues to rebound gradually with visitor arrivals, […]]]>

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The Pitons, Saint Lucia. (DEPOSIT)

CASTRIES – The Saint Lucia Tourism Authority (SLTA) predicted a “very strong” month for tourist arrivals here on Wednesday after the island saw an increase of more than 34% in arrivals.

SLTA said that as the tourism economy continues to rebound gradually with visitor arrivals, the island welcomed 21,357 visitors, an increase of 7,018 arrivals over May figures as the island is recovering from the impact of the coronavirus pandemic (COVID019).

He said that compared to 2019, the US market almost fully recovered as one of the strongest months on record with 92% of visitor arrivals.

“The UK market is also showing significant growth, amounting to 4% of arrivals both for June 2021 and year-to-date. By increasing travel opportunities from this market, the UK has also officially lifted the return quarantine from Amber Countries for fully vaccinated travelers. “

SLTA said June saw the introduction of an inaugural, high-performance weekly flight from Dallas, Texas, and the reintroduction of service from New York with American Airlines, as well as the re-establishment of services. cruise to the destination with 414 passengers. He said ancillary service providers to the cruise industry are also reporting a good month with increased activity, especially in the areas of shore excursions and pleasure cruises.

Tourism authorities here said that since the introduction of expanded access for visitors and fully immunized nationals, across the island, accommodation providers are reporting moderate to high occupancy levels, with several operating at the fully recommended capacity, which has a positive impact on all classifications of the stock of rooms.

“To date, the tourism sector has more than eight thousand people re-employed since restrictions were relaxed amid the pandemic. All efforts are focused on reintegrating more employees during this difficult time and seeing more visitors crossing our shores, which ultimately means a direct injection into our local economy, ”said the Minister of Tourism, Dominic Fedee.

The SLTA said it “is planning very strongly for July” and has so far welcomed the introduction of a new non-stop service from Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR) on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays.

He said it was an additional flight that provides better access and connectivity to the tri-state area of ​​New York, New Jersey and Connecticut, and by extension Philadelphia.

“By increasing access to Saint Lucia, regional carriers like Intercaribbean, LIAT and Air Sunshine are already contributing to the increase in air travel this summer. Air Sunshine has also added direct connections from Sainte-Croix and Saint-Kitts to the destination.

SLTA said the resumption of inter-island ferry services between the French island of Martinique and Saint Lucia, and the recent announcement by Trinidad and Tobago to reopen its borders on July 17, are in order. bodes well for the local industry.

“With access to more gateways coupled with the ease of the travel registration process and direct services to the island, more and more visitors are making Saint Lucia their destination of choice for romance, getaways. with family, culinary experiences, adventures, business, sports, international film sets and much more, ”added SLTA. (CMC)


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Passenger tested positive for COVID-19 on my cruise, here’s how the cruise line is protecting us https://timorseajustice.org/passenger-tested-positive-for-covid-19-on-my-cruise-heres-how-the-cruise-line-is-protecting-us/ https://timorseajustice.org/passenger-tested-positive-for-covid-19-on-my-cruise-heres-how-the-cruise-line-is-protecting-us/#respond Wed, 14 Jul 2021 13:55:39 +0000 https://timorseajustice.org/passenger-tested-positive-for-covid-19-on-my-cruise-heres-how-the-cruise-line-is-protecting-us/ I am currently on Viking’s third sailing around Iceland since they resumed cruises in the area just a few weeks ago. The cruise is one of the cruise line’s “Welcome to the World” cruises and will visit six ports around Iceland on the cruise. Since the Icelandic volcano started erupting last March, I have watched […]]]>

I am currently on Viking’s third sailing around Iceland since they resumed cruises in the area just a few weeks ago. The cruise is one of the cruise line’s “Welcome to the World” cruises and will visit six ports around Iceland on the cruise.

Since the Icelandic volcano started erupting last March, I have watched the livestream on YouTube every day wishing I could visit it. When Viking contacted me to invite me to sail Viking Sky, I just had to say yes.

This is my second cruise since reopening cruises to Americans just a month ago. Even though the ship is operating at around 80% occupancy, Viking takes security to another level with a lot more safety precautions than my previous cruise just a few weeks ago (on another cruise line).

As recently as today, we learned that a passenger on board Viking Sky had tested positive for COVID-19. The passenger is asymptomatic and is currently isolated. They will remain isolated until the end of the cruise where they will disembark and stay in a hotel for the quarantine.

All other passengers on the ship tested negative this morning.

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We were unable to disembark at our stopover today (Seydisfjordur), but the cruise is expected to complete the other port visits.

Here are the different ways Viking keeps guests safe on their ocean-going vessels even when a passenger tests positive for COVID-19.

100% vaccinated cruises – All crew members have been vaccinated against COVID-19 as well as all guests. This is possible because Viking does not allow passengers under the age of 18 to navigate their ships. Everyone on board is vaccinated.

Daily COVID-19 Tests – Test ! Trial! Trial! Each passenger was tested shortly after boarding and is also tested each morning. The tests are done using “pin tubes” so you don’t need a swab stuffed into your nose every day. Each morning you simply spit into a tube and your room attendant collects it so it can be tested in the ship’s lab.

It’s extremely simple and doesn’t take a long time from your cruise. Viking is the only cruise line to have a full-scale PCR lab installed on its cruise ships. This allows them to test everyone on the ship every day.

Since Viking runs daily tests, they expect to have positive cases from time to time. The protocols listed in this article are designed to stop a potential chain of transmission.

Daily temperature checks – At the entrance to the World Café, the Restaurant, and at customer service, tablets are set up to take your temperature. You scan your key card, the tablet takes a photo of your face, and then displays your body temperature. They ask all passengers to do this at least once a day.

UV cleaning robots – At night, UV cleaning robots clean the common parts of the ship.

Contacts search – All guests are required to carry a contact tracer with them. Don’t worry, this device does not follow you around the ship. Here is what he does.

If you test positive for COVID-19 in any of the daily tests, then the ship can see who you have been in contact with so they can be quarantined and tested again. The goal is to prevent an outbreak from spreading on the ship and it’s a good way to isolate any potential infected passengers.

After the passenger on board tested positive on my cruise, the contact tracing was activated and the ship was able to test everyone who was in close contact with them. (They all tested negative)

Masks required – Masks are mandatory whenever you are not in your room or when you do not eat / drink. Masks should also not be worn in swimming pools, hot tubs, fitness center or spa.

All guests are also required to wear masks on shore excursions. Viking is taking a cautious approach to resuming cruises.

All crew members wear a mask at all times.

Social distancing – Many lounge chairs and chairs are closed to allow for social distancing. In addition, reservations are required to use the fitness center and the amazing free thermal suite. This prevents these areas from being crowded and allows for good social distancing (since masks are not used there).

No self-service buffet – The World Cafe, the buffet aboard Viking Ocean ships, is open but the crew prepares the food for you. It is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Daily health survey – Every day, all passengers complete a short health survey on the app. The questions ask if you have symptoms of the flu, fever, etc.

These protocols allow Viking to operate at a higher capacity than other cruise lines. While some may feel that Viking is going a little too far with all of these health protocols, they are erring on the side of caution.

These Viking protocols are proving effective after the positive case was announced on our vessel today. All other passengers tested negative on each day of the cruise.

Like I said earlier, Viking expects to have a positive case here and there since they test everyone on a daily basis. These protocols are in place to prevent the spread of cases so everyone can continue to enjoy their cruise.

What is life on the ship like now that we’ve had a case of COVID-19? While we are still moored at the port (no one is allowed to get off), we spend a “day at sea”. Life around the ship is pretty much what you would expect on another day.

The atmosphere aboard the ship is upbeat and everyone seems to be enjoying our day on the ship. Guests play UNO, read books, enjoy time in pools and hot tubs, and even take a nap on this expansive harbor route. Some are even on the decks with umbrellas to take in the incredible view of the fjord on this rainy day.

I will update this article if more information is available for this cruise. We have two other port stops and at the moment we are still planning to visit them.

Viking works with Iceland Public Health to ensure the safety of guests on board the ship as well as those in the communities we visit.


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AmaWaterways and Metropolitan Touring launch a new river cruise experience on Colombia https://timorseajustice.org/amawaterways-and-metropolitan-touring-launch-a-new-river-cruise-experience-on-colombia/ https://timorseajustice.org/amawaterways-and-metropolitan-touring-launch-a-new-river-cruise-experience-on-colombia/#respond Mon, 12 Jul 2021 16:07:00 +0000 https://timorseajustice.org/amawaterways-and-metropolitan-touring-launch-a-new-river-cruise-experience-on-colombia/ AmaWaterways and Metropolitan Touring launch a new river cruise experience on ColombiaBOGOTÁ, Colombia, July 12, 2021 / PRNewswire / – Luxury river cruise innovator AmaWaterways today announced a groundbreaking partnership with Metropolitan Touring, South America leading tour operator, to introduce a new river cruise experience in Colombia. This is the first luxury river cruise company to sail the Magdalena River, an alliance brings together the remarkable […]]]> AmaWaterways and Metropolitan Touring launch a new river cruise experience on Colombia

BOGOTÁ, Colombia, July 12, 2021 / PRNewswire / – Luxury river cruise innovator AmaWaterways today announced a groundbreaking partnership with Metropolitan Touring, South America leading tour operator, to introduce a new river cruise experience in Colombia. This is the first luxury river cruise company to sail the Magdalena River, an alliance brings together the remarkable and in-depth expertise of Metropolitan Touring destinations and the industry’s leading team of river cruise experts at AmaWaterways .

From December 2023, guests will be immersed in unique experiences on land as well as aboard a new eco-friendly, fully custom-built river cruise ship. New Ship and Cruise Program will incorporate years of design experience from President and Co-Founder of AmaWaterways Rudi schreiner – affectionately known as the “Godfather of the River Cruise” – as well as Metropolitan Touring’s decades of expertise in expedition cruises to the Galapagos Islands.

Guests will be able to choose from two seven-night itineraries with land-based programs before and after the cruise exploring the beautiful Magdalena River and immersing themselves in that of Colombia living cultural and natural heritage. Accompanied by a qualified team, which will include an on-board wellness manager, travelers on a river cruise on the Magdalena River will enjoy in-depth connections with nature, wildlife, culture, flavors and local people, as well as activities such as kayaking, hiking and bird watching.

“Drawing on the expertise of each company, AmaWaterways and Metropolitan Touring have together created a unique program of river and land cruises that will immerse travelers in the beauty of the ‘river of a thousand rhythms’,” said Camilo Calderon, Managing Director of Metropolitan Touring Colombia. “Our customers will appreciate the modern comforts of a high-end river cruise ship, with exclusive experiences and unparalleled service, hallmarks of both companies, in the very heart of that of Colombia soul.”

This project will help promote Colombia as the ideal destination for international travelers as the country has strived to adapt to new global travel trends. This is why today the South American country is showing its best attributes through its new narrative, “Colombia, the friendliest place on earth “, a manifesto created to strengthen its global positioning and recognition as an ideal destination for business and tourism.

Colombia is taking big steps to help reactivate tourism through projects like this one on the Magdalena River. It is one of the most important developments in the Colombian tourism industry in recent years. Thanks to the work of the public and private sectors, travelers around the world will soon be able to explore that of Colombia most important river, living truly unique experiences “, explained Flavia Santoro, president of ProColombia, the government entity responsible for promoting international tourism, foreign direct investment, non-mining exports and the country’s brand.

Specific itineraries are currently being worked out with more details planned in the coming weeks.

To learn more about river cruising, visit www.metropolitan-touring.com/colombia/rio-magdalena.

NOTE TO MEDIA: High resolution images can be found here.

About Metropolitan Touring
Founded in 1953 by a group of young visionary entrepreneurs, Metropolitan Touring became Ecuador and South America leading tour operator. The company creates lasting and authentic experiences for explorers through Ecuador, Peru and Colombia, with three ships and a hotel in the Galapagos Islands, and two hotels on Ecuador continent. Metropolitan Touring is constantly on the lookout for new and exciting experiences for curious travelers in Latin America iconic destinations, focusing in particular on Colombia with its amazing natural and cultural diversity. In 2017, Metropolitan Touring became a carbon neutral company, offsetting all of its emissions by protecting the biodiversity and threatened forests of the Andean Chocó Bioregion, declared a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve in 2018.

www.metropolitan-touring.com

About AmaWaterways
Family business celebrating 19 years on the river, AmaWaterways offers unforgettable river cruises with 25 ships sailing in Europe, South East Asia, Africa and Egypt. Led by experienced river cruise co-founders Rudi schreiner and Kristin karst, the company is renowned for its innovative cabin design with unique “twin balconies”; its wellness activities, including a wide choice of included shore excursions offering biking and hiking options for the active traveler; and its award-winning restaurants, including The Chef’s Table specialty restaurant, as well as free fine wine, beer and soft drinks at lunch and dinner.

www.amawaterways.com

SOURCE Commercial office of the Colombian government

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Holidays in Greece: take a dream cruise in these… https://timorseajustice.org/holidays-in-greece-take-a-dream-cruise-in-these/ https://timorseajustice.org/holidays-in-greece-take-a-dream-cruise-in-these/#respond Sat, 10 Jul 2021 15:48:00 +0000 https://timorseajustice.org/holidays-in-greece-take-a-dream-cruise-in-these/ Sponsored by Visit Greece Holidays in Greece offer tourists unique and fascinating activities, wonderful beaches, delicious cuisine and much more. Which Greek destination is right for you? Greece is home to beautiful islands and a continent steeped in history, culture and rich gastronomy. Cruise vacations here allow visitors to explore the country’s beautiful coastline – […]]]>

Sponsored by Visit Greece

Holidays in Greece offer tourists unique and fascinating activities, wonderful beaches, delicious cuisine and much more. Which Greek destination is right for you?

Greece is home to beautiful islands and a continent steeped in history, culture and rich gastronomy.

Cruise vacations here allow visitors to explore the country’s beautiful coastline – with smaller ships stopping where larger ships cannot.

But cruises aren’t limited to life on board – you want to make sure your shore excursions are just as rewarding.

Greece has a large number of very popular vacation spots and it can be difficult to choose where to go. Here we take a look at some of the brilliant places that you can visit in Greece.

Heraklion

Heraklion is located on the beautiful island of Crete.

Fans of ancient history will love the Archaeological Museum, one of the most important museums in Greece, where visitors can find almost all of the unique treasures of Minoan civilization unearthed in Knossos, Phaistos, Malia and elsewhere.

Among the city’s most remarkable sites are the fortification walls that mark off the “old town”. The first fortifications were built by the Arabs and then reinforced by the Venetians in the 15th century.

Many monuments in Heraklion date back to the Middle Ages – a time when the city enjoyed great prosperity. The Venetian Loggia is just one highlight – a magnificent arched building adorned with coats of arms and trophies that served as a meeting place for the Duke and other nobles during the Venetian period.

Beach lovers will also be happy in Heraklion – there are beautiful blue flag sandy beaches.

Meanwhile, foodies should head to the town market where traditional Cretan products such as olive oil, raki, local wine, honey, herbs and more are sold.

Visitors to Heraklion should try to take a trip to Knossos – it is one of the most important archaeological sites in Europe and the legendary center of Minoan civilization from 1900 to 1400 BC.

Heraklion KNOSSOS Photo of the Region of Crete

Holidays in Greece: Heraklion is located on the beautiful island of Crete.

Santorini

Santorini’s iconic blue and white painted buildings perched atop steep cliffs are a well-known sight and the place is extremely popular with tourists.

Santorini – formed by a volcano (still active) – is a group of islands made up of Thira, Thirassia, Aspronissi, Palea and Nea Kameni in the southernmost part of the Cyclades. Don’t worry, the last big eruption happened 3,600 years ago.

Visitors to Santorini are spoiled for choice. Fira, perched on the edge of the Caldera, is the picturesque capital of the island. The town, along with Oia, Imerovigli, and Firostefani, set on top of a cliff, forms the so-called ‘Eyebrow of the Caldera’, the balcony of Santorini, from where visitors can admire stunning views of the volcano.

The small villages are also worth exploring and soaking up their distinctive traditional atmosphere is a rewarding experience.

As for the coastline, expect deep blue waters and beaches of white, red or black sand or volcanic pebbles, spectacular rock formations and awe-inspiring lunar landscapes.

And, when you’re ready to rest, indulge your taste buds with famous traditional dishes such as cherry tomatoes, white eggplants, broad beans, capers and ‘hloro tyrí’ (a special type of fresh goat cheese). . Or why not try some of the exceptional wines produced from grapes grown in the volcanic soil of the island?

– READ MORE: Crete, Athens or the Cyclades – where to go –

Photo of Oia Santorini by South Aegean Islands region 1

Vacation in Greece: Santorini’s iconic blue and white painted buildings, perched atop steep cliffs, are a well-known sight.

Koufonissia

Koufonisia is a small group of two islets called Pano Koufonisi and Kato Koufonisi which have some of the best beaches in the Aegean Sea.

The name Koufonisia translates to Hollow Islands because of the huge caves on the islands which made the pirates seem like hollow islands to spy on them from a distance.

Only Pano Koufonisi is populated and is the perfect place for vacationers looking to relax and drink on Koufonisia’s sheltered golden sandy beaches, small natural pools with turquoise waters and abundance of fresh seafood.

The best beaches are in Loutro, Parianos, Foinikas, Fanos, Italida and Pori where you can also go windsurfing. Be sure to take a boat tour of the island to explore sea caves and nearby islets.

The typical Cycladic village of Chora with its whitewashed houses and picturesque alleys is also worth a visit. Why not rent a bike or go for a hike?

Koufonisia 0186

Holidays in Greece: Koufonisia is a small group of two islets called Pano Koufonisi and Kato Koufonisi.

Iconic ports

Santorini

Postcard perfect, Santorini, one of the Cycladic islands located in the Aegean Sea, is famous for its…

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Mykonos

Located in the heart of the Greek Cyclades archipelago, the cosmopolitan town of Mykonos has acquired a…

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Heraklion

A bustling port city and capital of the Greek island of Crete, Heraklion has become a…

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Naxos

Naxos is the largest and greenest island in the Cyclades. It features high mountains, fertile valleys, verdant gorges, stunning seascapes and traditional villages.

It has a rich history and is even featured in Greek myths. The islet of Palatia can be spotted as visitors enter the harbor. The impressive marble door of the Temple of Apollo, which dates from the 6th century BC, can still be found here. According to mythology, the god Dionysus met Ariadne there after she was abandoned by Theseus (of minotaur fame).

Culture lovers will appreciate the Archaeological Museum, housed in a historic building from the Venetian period, while Chora, the capital, has an imposing Venetian castle. There is a lot of amazing architecture to contemplate here – it is a unique blend of Cycladic and Medieval.

Outdoor enthusiasts will love the many hiking routes on offer – or explore by bike!

There are also a number of picturesque villages in Naxos. Apeiranthos has impressive architecture (think stone towers, old houses, churches and alleyways cobbled in marble) while Halki is home to Byzantine churches, colorful lanes, and beautiful old mansions. Also look for traditional windmills in the area.

If you are heading for the beach, be sure to visit Agios Prokopios, Agia Anna and Plaka, sandy beaches with crystal clear waters and ideal for families and couples.

Gourmets will appreciate the quality local products, such as olive oil, potatoes, the famous liqueur of the island (Kitron), the mouth-watering wine and especially the famous cheeses of Naxos. These include graviera (hard cheese), xinomyzithra (sour myzithra, made from goat’s or sheep’s milk, yeast and salt), xinotyro (sour cheese), arseniko (a delicious cheese. hard paste made from goat’s and sheep’s milk).

City of Drz Naxos 1727

Holidays in Greece: Naxos is the largest and greenest island in the Cyclades.

Mykonos

Greece: The south coast of Mykonos is home to the most popular beaches.

Mykonos

Mykonos also played a role in Greek mythology. Mykonos is said to have been formed from the petrified bodies of giants slain by Hercules while the island takes its name from Apollo’s grandson, Mykonos.

Visitors to the capital Hora can wander the town’s pretty streets – check out its whitewashed houses with colorful doors and window frames, purple flowering bougainvillea, and hidden churches.

Of course, we must not forget the cosmopolitan side of Mykonos. There is good shopping to be done in the capital, with glamorous Matoyánni Street lined with designer stores, charming cafes and chic, upscale restaurants.

Make sure to head to the bustling waterfront where fishing boats are moored and the local pelican can be found.

The bird has been the official mascot of Mykonos for many decades since Petros the pelican was found by a fisherman after a storm in 1954. He eventually became the companion of the locals and upon his death the community was so devastated that ‘a replacement was quickly found. . In honor of Petros, the locals have established a long tradition of pelicans wandering the water’s edge as an essential part of daily life.

Alefkántra or “Little Venice”, an 18th century district, is also worth a visit. It is one of the most idyllic and iconic areas of the Cyclades and is perfect for a cocktail or a romantic dinner.

The south coast of Mykonos is home to the most popular beaches, with Paradise and Super Paradise known for partying, but, if you want something quieter, try the beaches of Panormos, Kalafatis, Ornos and Agios Ioannis.

Mykonos is also ideal for water sports, from windsurfing and jet skiing to sea skydiving and diving.

On the food side, try the pepper kopanistí, a soft cheese seasoned with pepper – the island’s gourmet brand. Try it as a garnish on a rusk spread with grated tomato, a favorite local mezes (appetizer). Meanwhile, carnivores can enjoy “louzes” (pork tenderloin cooked with spices) and tasty local sausages sprinkled with pepper and local oregano. To end your meal, savor two exceptional local pastries: “amigdalotá” (small round cakes with almond powder, rose water and powdered sugar) and honey tart.

To learn more about visiting Greece, click here.

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First Carnival Cruise Live Blog: Day 7, Coming Home (and COVID Test) https://timorseajustice.org/first-carnival-cruise-live-blog-day-7-coming-home-and-covid-test/ https://timorseajustice.org/first-carnival-cruise-live-blog-day-7-coming-home-and-covid-test/#respond Fri, 09 Jul 2021 21:47:43 +0000 https://timorseajustice.org/first-carnival-cruise-live-blog-day-7-coming-home-and-covid-test/ Note: We post a live blog daily aboard the Carnival Vista on the first Carnival cruise to resume sailing since March 2020. You can read the previous days here: Day 7 of our cruise is coming to an end, as is the trip itself. Today is another spectacular day of time. Throughout this journey we […]]]>

Note: We post a live blog daily aboard the Carnival Vista on the first Carnival cruise to resume sailing since March 2020. You can read the previous days here:

Day 7 of our cruise is coming to an end, as is the trip itself. Today is another spectacular day of time. Throughout this journey we have been blessed day after day by blue skies.

The sky is partly cloudy today, the sea is calm and we return to Galveston. The only downside is that with a southerly wind as we sail north there is not as much breeze on the deck so it was very hot. Of course, that makes for perfect pool weather for our last day at sea.

Before heading to the pool, let’s start with last night where, after having a quick dinner in the deli, we headed to the evening show at the Liquid Lounge theater. This show was “Flick”, a musical and dance number where the team performed hit songs from movies including Skyfall (James Bond), I Will Always Love You and medleys featuring songs from Jurassic Park and Star Wars.

Flick was a terrific performance which led to a standing ovation from the audience at the end.

If you remember we went to a show a few nights ago it was good but didn’t blew us away. Browse simply went above and beyond. The show is a staple in our book. Throughout there are a number of neat special effects as well as the great performance of the crew.

Skyfall’s vocals featured a whirlwind of fans holding huge, loose fabrics magically suspended in the air. Later, a dancer appeared to bend and break the lasers as they lit up the room. The truth is, it’s hard to explain special effects or give them due credit, because we’ve never really seen anything like it. Bottom line: It was a great performance. If you have the chance, go see it. It was a fantastic end to the day in Cozumel.

Like the last day on the ship, it is one of those days filled with different emotions. Firstly, you are always a little disappointed that the trip ends. Second, you can’t wait to get home. Finally, it’s still a day at sea, so you have the boat to enjoy it a little longer.

This morning I got up early so I went to the gym for a quick workout. Apart from a few other early risers, it was empty.

Then it was off to breakfast. Even around 8:30 am, it was already nicely toasted by the time we finished eating. We played a quick round of mini-golf with our son, sweating without doing much. From there we quickly returned to the room to change, but noticed something from the balcony.

As the ship sailed, we passed several schools of flying fish. Sometimes it was one or two, other times it was dozens of flying fish that circled the surface of the water. We watched until the sun hit us too hard. Then it was again for more time in the water park to cool off with the kid and work on our tan. Due to the good weather and time in the pool my wife and I were able to get some great colors which was definitely not the case before this trip.

Another day of great weather and calm seas as we cross the Gulf of Mexico.

One thing I noticed today is that the outdoor crew – like lifeguards and cleaning staff – no longer wear masks. Previously, all staff were masked inside and out.

I asked one of the lifeguards, who said due to the sun and the masks were wet they were allowed to go without a mask. I saw a poor crew member who had a very distinct mask tan line on the lower half of his face from previous days. I’m sure he’s happy with the change.

As we ended up at the pool, we dried off, went back to the room, and planned to go to lunch. Then the phone rang. It was the ship’s staff saying we had to go down to deck four immediately for COVID testing for our son.

As part of CDC protocols, unvaccinated passengers should be tested before disembarking from the ship at its end. We expected this test, but never heard a single word about when it would happen until the phone call.

As I got down, I noticed that the list of unvaccinated passengers for testing was almost complete, with the exception of a few latecomers. I asked how everyone knew to come and get tested and was told we should have had a flyer on our doorstep. We never received any notice until the phone call. Giving up everything to go have our son tested was a bit of a surprise.

Regardless, the living room we arrived in was largely empty and we went straight back to test. The team wore full PPE gear, took a quick swab from my son’s nose, and then we had to wait about 20 minutes for the test results. With a negative test, we then received a letter stating the result and were able to continue the rest of our day.

blue iguana food
BlueIguana – simple, fresh and delicious.

We chose to have lunch at BlueIguana, sitting outside by the pool where the Groove for St. Jude event was taking place. On the last day at sea, the music was playing, the weather was wonderful, and it seemed like the whole ship was here enjoying the last hours before heading back to the real world.

This afternoon, we’re spending our time packing things up while our son takes a nap, and also figuring out what we want for our last meal on the ship. Cruising is hard work.

Our final thoughts on the first cruise

So what’s the result of the first Carnival cruise to return to sailing? In my eyes, it depends on whether you have it or not.

If you are vaccinated (which most people who sail will be) then, as I mentioned, the cruise experience has largely returned to normal. You can set sail, go swimming, eat at all of your favorite restaurants, gamble in the casino, watch a show and hit the shore.

The differences you notice are minimal. Staff wear masks, you have to wear a mask at ports of call and terminals, and a lot of printed materials like menus and daily planner are not there.

In other words, it was a Carnival cruise before the break and it is still a Carnival cruise despite small changes.

But if you don’t have the vaccine or if you are sailing with someone who hasn’t been vaccinated, then things are different.

On the ship, many things are largely the same as before without the vaccine due to the high vaccination rate of all passengers. Masks are recommended, but not required (it seems less kids wear them as they travel). You are free to go to all parts of the ship, and there are no distancing rules in place. The staff are also ready to make sure you have a good time. Go to the dining room, to the swimming pool, to the theater… everything is there to enjoy it.

As far as life on board was concerned, this cruise had the children’s area closed for the little ones, making the biggest difference. There are also pre-boarding and pre-departure testing requirements. Still, testing is quick and easy, so it wasn’t a big deal.

Where there is the greatest change for the unvaccinated is on land. Right now, only a handful of ‘bubble tours’ are available, unless you’re heading to one of Carnival’s private islands. If you don’t book one of these trips, it means you have to stay on the ship. And even if you do one of the excursions, expect the rules to be strict ashore.

So you will need to be prepared to spend a lot of time on the ship or spend a lot of money to pay for one of the very few excursions on offer.

One final note: my experience only describes this one cruise. It is almost certain that things will change one way or another in the future. If there are higher cases on land then I would expect more restrictions on the ship.

For example, I’ve seen Royal Caribbean’s crossings from the UK (where cases are rising sharply despite vaccinations) require testing, even with vaccinated passengers. They also implement other rules on the ship. Personally, I am concerned that another wave of cases here in the United States will occur given what has been seen elsewhere.

But if cases remain low and cruises can sail with limited positive tests, then some relaxation of restrictions – such as offering more excursion options – may be in order.

For now, however, my opinion is that the cruising experience is back if you’ve got the hang of it. Otherwise you can still have fun like we did, just know that most of it will be on the ship.

Interesting observations

Carnival boat tracker
For some reason I could watch this channel for hours.
  • Is anyone else hypnotized by the ship tracker on the cabin television? I check it several times a day and even my son is asking for it now.
  • One thing I forgot to mention is that in the ports I have visited you feel a bit like a celebrity. There were people taking a lot of videos of the ship and the passengers disembarking. Roatan had what looked like a press crew there to film the story. Galveston had hundreds lined up near the wharf to say goodbye. The return of ships is a big problem for these ports.
  • I am surprised by the number of blue “Sail & Sign” cards I see. A blue card indicates a passenger during his first navigation. It seems that many people have chosen to take their first cruise the first after more than 15 months. I expected veteran passengers to make a strong comeback when they return from cruises, but the new cruisers are making a good impression.

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