April 15, 2016 Civitavecchia, Italy
Most of the ship disembarks today after the first seven days of the cruise. We are staying on for the next 12 days so we booked a tour to Umbria. Apparently there are 500 people staying on for the next cruise.
We met our guide, Luca, at the gate around 8 am. Joe booked this tour for us through Viator. Unfortunately we had to be back on the ship by 3 pm so our time was a bit tight. There were only eight of us on the tour the rest of our group stayed on the ship and in port for the day. We had a nice drive through the country side with stops in Orvieto and Civi di Bagnoregio. James and I visited both these towns last year.
Orvieto means "old eye". The hilltop town is located on top of a hill that was an important valley for protection. It is on the main passage from Rome to Florence. The exterior of the gothic cathedral in Orvieto is stunning. We decide not to go inside because our time was limited. I did go to my favourite leather shop and showed a lot of restraint by not purchasing anything.
If you want to see a real place that looks like it is out of a fairy tale, visit Civi di Bagnoregio. It is a dying town with only a handful of people living there and it is sliding off the cliff but it is magnificent. To get to the hilltop town you have to cross a bridge that is quite steep. Once you conquer the bridge you are rewarded with the cutest medieval village. There are shops, restaurants, hotels and of course a church. We looked around a bit and then had a gelato when we crossed back to meet Luca.
We were back to the ship on time but we still don't know why we had to be back so early. The ship didn't sail until about 6 pm. The ms Amsterdam was domed beside us. This is the Holland America ship that does the world tour. I heard second hand that the people on the Amsterdam were invited to for the Koningsdam. As we were setting sail there was a lot of horn honking and cheering back and forth between the Amsterdam and Koningsdam.
James and I toured the spa on the ship and decided to purchase the thermal suite package. I'll try and take some photos for a future post. It is the perfect way to end an evening.