Saturday, February 06, 2010

The straights of Messina and Assisi

The final leg of our cruise lasted for two days as we sailed across the Mediterranean day and night from Alexandria, in Egypt past Sicily on our left through the straights of Messina. When we passed these straights on the way out we did it at night so there was nothing to see. This time we did them around noon. We gathered on the front top deck with many others to catch our first sight of land in two days.

On our right we followed the coast of Italy, finally seeing Reggio di Calabria on our right and Messina, in Sicily, on our left. At their narrowest point the straights are not more than 3 kilometres wide. and we took on a pilot to guide us and enjoyed the wonderful view of Favazzina on the Italian coast.

The next morning we arrived at Civitacecchia, the traditional port city of Rome, and docked there for excursions. Having "done" Rome last year, we had decided to visit somewhere completely different: Assisi, the home-town of Saint Francis so off we went. Here's a picture of the impressive cathedral dedicated to Saint Francis, which includes his tomb.

We spent all day on a three-hour coach ride to Assisi and visited the town, the cathedral, and the other special places, and had lunch all together at a great little trattoria called La Stalla, ending up with another three-hour ride back to the boat. We had a wonderful meal of grilled pork chops on an open fire.

Well, that's all for now, folks! We sailed back to Savona where we were provided with another free coach ride that took us back to Nice, our point of departure in France. Let's do it agaiin! Coming?


  1. Wow It sure sounds like you guys had lots of fun and got to see a lot too.

  2. Probably not...unfortunately. But it sure sounds like a good idea. I'm glad you had a wonderful time - thanks for the photos.

  3. Daddy, please can you write some more about Assissi, if you get time ?

    I know you have already told us children a lot about it already, but the blog will also set it down for others and for posterity !