A cruise is not just about toe-dipping tourism. Sure you flit through ports looking around for a few hours, maybe pick up a few souvenirs directed specifically at tourists, learn a little and then move on. However, as I’ve learned on this holiday, there is so much more. It’s a health resort if you want it to be. There is 24 hour food service which is free (well, paid for in the ticket price) so if you want to you can chow down all day on hamburgers and high calorie, low nutrition delights, but it’s also easy to find salads, soups and seafood and eat healthily and modestly. There are all manner of health and beauty services on board. I dragged my bad back and gammy foot off to the resident acupuncturist / Chinese herbalist. The treatment was both beneficial and educational and I’ve been lounging lazily in the hydrotherapy pool and then wandering off to the heat treatment chairs to lounge some more. All this lounging is done while watching sparkling aqua ocean and gorgeous Adriatic islands pass by.
So it’s not the same as doing the Paul Theroux and travelling through Asia and India by train while chatting to and learning from ordinary and colourful local folk. In fact it is probably at the opposite pole, any cultural knowledge gained is extremely shallow, but cruising has an awful lot to recommend it. Just expect a totally different experience to other forms of travelling.
She's my favourite