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Published: June 17th 2017
So we are off on another sojourn to the Mediterranean. Of course the trip involves a big ship. This time around it's the turn of Celebrity Reflection on a 10 night cruise that starts in Civitivecchia and visits Messina in Sicily, Valletta in Malta, Mykonos, Rhodes, Santorini & Athens in Greece before heading back to Italy for Naples and a return to Civitavecchia on the 29th May.
Peter picks me up from work and we grab an early dinner before heading to the Radisson Blu Hotel at the airport. Once checked in we take advantage of Jet 2's Twilight Checkin facility. The check in desks were so quiet when we arrived at 7.30pm. Once done we head back to the hotel room and relax for the remainder of the evening. A 4.30am alarm call means early to bed.
After a fitful nights sleep the clarion call of multiple alarms sound and we shower, dress and head to the car for the short drive to the Meet & Greet at Terminal 3. Straight through security and before we know it we are airside. We pick up a bottle of bubbles for our customary sail away on the ship and then
to Giraffe for some breakfast. Our flight is called shortly afterwards and our plane is soon hurtling down the 2nd runway at Manchester and up into the morning sky. Our flight is a nippy two and a half hours. We both downloaded some tv shows and movies to our iPads to watch enroute and before we know we're touching down at Romes Fiomucino Airport. Last time we flew into Rome to join a Celebrity Cruise our bags didn't make the flight and so we await by the carousel with some trepidation. My bag and Peters little case come off close together and so we wait nervously for Peters main case to show. It soon does.
Our driver is waiting in the arrivals halls with a sign. It takes us a while to spot him as it seems the whole world has flown into Rome on the same day at the same time. It's so busy. Cases stowed we take about 40 minutes to drive northward from the airport to the coastal port of Civitavecchia. We are staying at the Hotel De La Ville which is situated right on the sea front and we get a room with lovely sea
views. The hotel is older and a little dated but it is spotlessly clean. I think you would say it had 'character'.
Once settled we venture out into the town for some lunch and to buy a few Nik naps for the trip. Our last visit involved running around like headless chickens trying to buy clothing and toiletries because of our missing cases and so it is nice to take a more leisurely start to our holiday. We find a small little ristorante overlooking the port and enjoy some pizza and beer. Shortly after we both find ourselves enjoying a siesta after our very early start this morning.
By the time we awaken and shower the shadows are lengthening as the Mediterranean sun sinks lower on the horizon. Golden Hour. If you have ever spent a day at the beach you will know this time in the very late afternoon and early evening. Where the light takes on that magical ethereal quality. We stroll a short distance along the promenade to an open air bar for some gin and tonics and jack and diets. Measures are generous and the atmosphere relaxed. From here we head to a restaurant
Peter had booked online before we left called 80 Fame that was ranked No2 on Tripadvisor. Good choice. The food and service was exceptional and we were made to feel very welcome.
After dinner we head to a small bar on the promenade called the Gran Caffe. We order 2 glasses of Chardonnay but they had run out of our grape of choice and the waitress recommend a pecorino. I was sure this was a cheese but we agree and it's an excellent choice. So good we get another glass each before retiring to the hotel.
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