It’s coming up for nine years since my wife and I got married and took our first, proper, foreign holiday together as our honeymoon treat to ourselves. I say proper because technically we had taken a day trip to France with a previous company I’d worked at as part of their Christmas gift to the employees. But, our honeymoon was our first trip to foreign soil of any real duration and it involved something other than a channel-hopping ferry. In fact, it involved another couple of firsts for the pair of us and those were our first trip to Asia and our first cruise. It started a bit of a love affair with that latter form of holidaying.
I’ve written about our first experience with cruising as a tongue-in-cheek guide for other first time cruisers before and that article is still in the archive version of this site: Your First Princess Cruise. I won’t repeat much of what was written there. Instead, this blog post is a notification that all (well, unless I think to add some more at a later date) of the elements of that trip to Asia with Princess Cruises have now been put in the travel and photography portfolio section of this site. You can see all the posts from that cruise on the Diamond Princess but I wanted to just highlight a small number of individual posts here:
- China was a truly outstanding place and I love that we got to walk on the Great Wall and through the Forbidden City and in Tiananmen Square. My fondest memories of the country, though, are its people. From those Chinese people who wanted to have their photos taken with us, to the ones who sidled up near us just to hear us talking, to the huge numbers of people engaging in dancing and singing and games-playing in the Temple of Heaven, to the girl who posed for me with a beaming smile when she spotted my camera: wonderful people, stunning country.
- You want good weather when you’re travelling abroad usually but I have to say that the rain that accompanied our day trip up to the old mining town of Jiufen on Taiwan somehow made that time there more special; it’s hard to describe just how strange and also fantastic walking along narrow, dark alleys with warm rain coming down off the gutters and awnings and spilling off umbrellas held over neon-lit faces is.
- Singapore featured Raffles and that gave us the chance to say we’ve drunk Singapore Slings in the place in which it was invented. And they were lovely, as was the excursion we were on, as well as the incredible lightning storm we saw on the horizon as we left the country in the evening.
There are plenty more posts covering everywhere else we hit on our first two weeks abroad. As I said, that was our first cruise and the bug has well-and-truly bitten us now. We’re missing two continents on our visited list between us (only I’ve been to Africa, though), those being Australia and Antarctica. Of the two, we almost hit the latter in the beginning of 2016 but decided to save our money and do it properly at some other point. The Australian continent doesn’t hold much appeal to us but I dare say we’ll get there eventually.