(Greece Flag)


(Greece Map)


SUNDAY, AUGUST 19, 2013:

Today we were in the port of Piraeus, Greece from 9:00AM to 6:30PM
The first stop on my shore excursion today was the Temple of Poseidon at Cape Sounion.
Cape Sounion is located 43 miles Southest of Athens, at the southernmost tip of the Attica peninsula.
Cape Sounion is noted as the site of ruins of an ancient Greek temple of Poseidon, the god of the sea.
The remains are perched on the headland, surrounded on three sides by the sea.
The ruins bear the deeply engraved name of English Romantic poet Lord Byron.

All of the images below are thumbnails and can be clicked on for a larger image.

The Temple of Poseidon Cape Sounion Cape Sounion

After lunch at a very nice Athen's hotel it was on to the Acropolis.
The Acropolis of Athens is an ancient citadel located on a high rocky outcrop above
the city containing the remains of several ancient buildings of great architectural
and historic significance, the most famous being the Parthenon.
Olympic Stadium in Athens The Acropolis in Athens The Parthenon

From the Acropolis there is a spectacular view of the city of Athens.
View of Athens from the Acropolis View of Athens from the Acropolis View of Athens from the Acropolis

The video below is 22 minutes long of my visit to Athens, Greece.

MY DAILY EMAIL SENT ON AUGUST 19, 2013
Hello folks,

We sailed into the harbor of Piraeus, Greece this morning at 8:00. They made us sit just outside the breakwater, about a 100 yards from our berth, for almost an hour while they let all the ferry boats pass in front of us. Then after we did dock, the local officials made us wait well over another hour before they would give us clearance to go ashore. This long delay made for a very rushed tour of Athens since we started our tours well over an hour late. Then a lot of the people on the bus were very upset because the bus driver was driving way too fast trying to make up some of the time.

I have been to Athens before, but one of the things that I was not able to see last time was the Temple of Poseidon. That was our first stop today. It took over an hour to drive down there. It was a very scenic drive down Attica's rugged western coast to Cape Sounion. The Temple of Poseidon is a majestic marble relic overlooking the Aegean Sea, a fitting monument to the God of the Sea.



The view from up there was equally as impressive.



But we didn't get to enjoy the view for long. I think the most time we were ever given at any place today was about 25 minutes. Below is another picture of the view.



It was about an hours drive into Athens next. Our next stop was lunch. We stopped at a very nice five star resort. It had a very nice view from the terrace and the lunch was equally as good.



We weren't rushed through lunch, it was very enjoyable. Next we made a quick photo stop at the Olympic Stadium.



Next it was up to the Acropolis. It was now mid afternoon, the hottest part of the nearly 100 degree day, and we are climbing up to the acropolis. The ancient Romans didn't put in any escalators. I'm not sure my cardiologist would have approved of this, but I made it. Below is a picture of the Parthenon, the greatest monument to ancient civilization.



On the north side of the Acropolis is the Erectheum, the sacred site where it was decided that Athena would rule the city.



The last time I was here we went up in the morning. The view was much better today because I didn't have to shoot into the sun.



We only had twenty minutes to walk around. Lucky we didn't break our necks rushing around on all that slippery marble. Below is another picture of the view of Athens from the Acropolis.



They also confiscated my video camera before I was allowed to go up. They said professional cameras were not allowed. I made the mistake of taking it out of the bag and just carrying the camera. I didn't want to carry the heavy bag up there. If it was in the bag they never would have noticed. Below is a look at the Temple of Zeus from the Acropolis.



Coming down was a lot easier then going up. We did a quick driving tour around the city next. Below is Hadrian's Arch from the bus window.



Our last stop was Plaka, an historic shopping distract. I had time for some cheesecake gelato. It was then back on the bus and back to the port. They were bringing in the gangways moments after we returned to the ship. I think we were the one of the last ones to get back. Below is a picture as we sailed away.



We are now sailing for the final port of the cruise, Venice. Tomorrow is a sea day as we make our way north. We arrive in Venice on Wednesday around noon. We sail right through the harbor in front of St. Mark's Square on the way to the port. We have the rest of the day to explore Venice as we stay over night.

Until Venice,

Tim
Click on email photos for the large full-size photograph.

This was my second visit to Athens. I was also here in 2009.

Sunday evening after returning from Athens there was a concert in the atrium of the ship.
You can watch the complete concert in the video below.

32 minute video of music performance in the atrium of the Royal Princess.



MONDAY, AUGUST 20, 2013:

Monday was a day at sea.

The video below is 118 minutes long of my entire Mediterranean cruise on the Royal Princess.


Click on the arrow above to continue to my next stop, VENICE, ITALY!

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