Sunday May 26, 2013

YEEHAA! We’re in countdown mode now – ticking off the final few hours before our group meets at the airport tomorrow morning with hearts-a-flutter, bags all packed, and passports clutched in hot little hands!

Some “MIDLIFE MADNESS” – that’s what we’ve got planned. It’ll start in Singapore … then continue in Amsterdam, Holland, where our shiny new ship, the Amadeus Princess, will be waiting to take us on a showcase cruise along Europe’s great rivers.

blog 01-Amadeus Princess

Amadeus Princess

We’ll be gliding through Holland, Germany, Austria, Slovakia and Hungary … past wide-open spaces, quaint villages, proud castles, impressive cathedrals … right into the throbbing hearts of some truly dazzling cities. We’ll be going ashore every day … packing in as much sightseeing as possible … with heaps of time in-between to kick back, relax and have fun.

As we’ve said all along, we’re gonna have a BALL!


It’s hard to know where to start – because they’ll just keep coming, day after day, night after night, highlight after highlight. But here’s what our itinerary includes …

  • magical, old, scarred, soothing Amsterdam (Holland) with its canals, bikes and ever-present windmills
  • Cologne (Germany) with its 14th-century lacy-spired Cathedral, a World Heritage Site
  • 2000-year-old Koblenz, on the confluence of the Rhine and Moselle rivers
  • the terraced vineyards, narrow streets and wine taverns of Ruedesheim
  • Miltenberg, with its half-gables terraced houses … and charming Wertheim with its 12th-century castle and Pointed Tower
  • the famous Residenz (baroque palace) of Wuerzburg, with its frescoes and great marble staircase
  • medieval Bamberg, with its orchestra and local specialty: ‘smoke beer’
  • the Bavarian city of Nuremberg, filled with Gothic churches, watchtowers and gateways
  • picturesque Regensburg, most ancient city on the Danube, with its 12th-century Old Stone Bridge and Porta Pretoria
  • enchanting Passau with its coloured houses, arcades and Europe’s largest pipe organ
  • stunning Melk (Austria) in the Wachau Valley, home to a 900-year-old abbey … and Duernstein, with its magnificent Stiftkirche and castle
  • Vienna, one-time centre of the Hapsburgs and classical music (Strauss, Beethoven, Mozart), with its awe-inspiring Opera House and cathedral
  • lovingly restored Bratislava (Slovakia), with its centuries-old squares and enormous castle
  • ‘Paris of the East’, Budapest (Hungary), straddling the Danube with its Chain Bridge

And, if that’s not enough, some of us will continue from there on a 7-day coach-tour to glorious golden Prague (Czech Republic) … with stops en route at Brno, Ceske Budejovich, Salzburg, Oberammergau, Heidelberg & Frankfurt.

Anyway, it’s late! And we’ve still got stuff lying all over the house that’s somehow gotta be jammed into our suitcases – HELP!

So it’s goodnight from her – and it’s goodnight from me!

Yours bloggedly – JOHN

P.S I’ll add some fresh entries once this adventure’s actually underway – and I’ll include some award-winning pix. So stay tuned …

This entry was posted in 2013 Danube & Rhine by John Cooney. Bookmark the permalink.

About John Cooney

John Cooney and his wife Robyn have enjoyed more than their fair share of travel. They hesitate to call themselves ‘experts’ – but they’ve grabbed every chance that’s come their way to explore new countries, cultures and customs. They’ve had the privilege (both on their own and as the leaders of numerous successful group-tours) to sample many stunning destinations: Europe, the UK, Singapore, Vanuatu, the USA, Israel, Egypt, Africa, Dubai, China, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. And their recent (and most pleasant) memories are of the places ancient-and-modern that border the Mediterranean. John and Robyn are at-home in airports, hotels, cruise ships, and the like … and they know how to make the most of a unique travel opportunity. Travel, they reckon, is an all-five-senses experience – a chance to see, feel, smell, hear and taste the world. And they’ve done it often enough to know for sure: sightseeing with a group of laid-back Kiwis is DOUBLE the fun – lots of laughs, great company, and memories that last forever!

3 thoughts on “ONLY ONE MORE SLEEP!

  1. John, with all the MM Tours ‘ under your belt,’ how come you have not yet mastered the requirements of ‘basic’ “Bag Packing”??. Robyn our sympathy is extended to you for having to get “the BIG boy organised ! We will be with you “all the way” . Happy and safe travelling. Love & blessings from David and Marilyn..

  2. Message for Helen Wylie
    Hi mum, you’re probably in mid-flight on your way to Amsterdam. We’ve woken up to our first frost of the season and it’s cold! Loads of snow around the country yesterday. I’m off into Nelson this evening for Reuben’s basketball game and then tomorrow night it’s off to the High School talent quest to watch Sophie perform. She has had so many positive comments about her singing that she is starting to believe she can sing!
    Would love to hear how your trip is going and what you got up to in Singapore. Take care. Hi to the other Helen.
    Love Jill, Michael, Sophie and Reuben.

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