Ephesus, Turkey

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20 May 2012

Ephesus is outstanding. The most accessible ruins we have ever visited. The views are grand and you are in the midst of history. Only 15% of the ruins are unearthed from the earthquake at destroyed the town. The sea has receded almost 10 km from old Ephesus over the last 2000 years from the river silting over. 240,000 people lived in Ephesus at its peak. Standing in the theatre with it's outstanding acoustics you are amazed by the size. This is a must see.

Istanbul, Turkey

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19 May 2012

We joined the excursion group to visit the Blue Mosque and St. Sophia. The tiled Mosque was once the largest dome in the world and is now the third largest behind the Doma in Florence and the Vatican's St. Paul's cathedral. We spent the afternoon in the Grand Bazaar. If you are looking for rugs, jewelry, leather goods, trinkets, Turkish Delight, scarfs, watches, t-shirts, jerseys, or souvenirs then you have found the right place. They are less aggressive than the Egyptians, but still irritating.

I did find a beautiful cotton scarf that will be great for cool evening at the theatre. We really liked Turkey. It is a secular country, rights and freedoms are not restricted by religious law.

Crown Princess

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We are excited about our upcoming cruise on the Crown Princess. We fly to Rome in May for an evening with our dear friend Dennis Cigler, before boarding. You may remember our last visit with Dennis. We will have a few days to rest at sea before arriving in Alexandria, Egypt. We then travel to the island of Mykonos and on to Turkey to visit Istanbul and Ephesus (Kusadasi). Next we tour the ruins of Athens and then around to Venice, Italy where we will disembark and stay for a few days at a B&B beside one of the canals. We hope to take a lot of photos and get a little writing done.