The big day was March 31, 2018! We did not waste any time, and on April 2 we flew to Fort Lauderdale, spent the night and boarded the MS Oosterdam on April 3, on our way to Barcelona. We had incredible smooth seas and only the last evening before arriving in Madeira encountered 12-15 feet swells.
Before our cruise to Barcelona, we spend a wonderful evening with our friends Elsa & Nicolas. They drove up from Miami to spend the evening with us in Fort Lauderdale! What a great time we had! Looking forward to doing it again.
Tuesday morning we ate the usual La Quinta Inn breakfast then headed to the cruise terminal, where we boarded the MS Oosterdam for our cruise to Barcelona. After lunch on board, did some exploring, and had our first dinner. The evening ended up with a quick preview of the upcoming shows .
Thursday April 12, we arrived in Madeira, capital of the island of Funchal. The beautiful island simply jumps out of the water! It has mountains that push straight up and create dramatic views. Our West madeira tour took us to various points of the island. Here are a few photos.
As you can see in these photos, the eastern Atlantic finally decided to show some of its capabilities. We sailed into a low pressure area and the swells were 12-15 feet. It made the boat dance a little from side to side, but nothing major. No dining dishes sliding off the tables! Miriam didn't even used her Dramamine patch!
If it is Thursday, it must be Lisbon! Lisboa is a hilly town on the Tagus river, and simply beautiful. Here, we were able to visit TimeOut and try out Phil's recommended "Pasteis de Nata". So delicious, they must be the best in Lisbon.
On Saturday April 15, we arrived to our first Spanish port, Huelva, just 90 kms from Seville. After all the walking in Lisbon, Miriam stayed on board, and I took the free shuttle to downtown Huelva. Although at sunrise, the weather and sky was beautiful, by 10AM it was cloudy, a little rain and even a little foggy. Being Sunday, just about everything was closed in town, so there was not much to see!