What disadvantageously distinguishes European cruises from Caribbean ones are the views of the arrival ports. In the Caribbean, it's wonderful to watch the passing landscape from the deck or balcony as the ship approaches the island (usually, there are islands), yachts in the harbor, as well as sailing past the beaches, and so on . . .
These scenes are practically non-existent in Europe.
However, I have had a very limited experience of voyages around Europe, but I saw similar photos from reviews by other tourists - boring views of the ports, some cranes, containers, trucks, warehouses, etc. These views do not "WOW". And often, ships stop outside of urban areas because the cities are often large, and therefore, the port itself is located from from the city.
The Spanish city of
was an exception on our cruise.
First, we arrived later in the morning, that is to say, this time we didn't oversleep as usual :) We had already had breakfast and were watching the ship's arrival from the deck.
We drifted closer . . .
The main advantage is that the ship in Vigo stands in the heart of the city, so you do not need any shuttles or taxis . . . you can just walk!
That's the port.
I suppose, they breed oysters here...
Apparently, the city is known for its oysters.
Therefore, before coming to Vigo, there was a warning in our program in large print to NOT EAT oysters on the shore. The program was brought to each cabin every night! Next, there were "terrible" examples from past trips, when people contracted food poisoning because they ate the oysters on the shore :(
I think that these horror stories only served to work people up. In the end, many of the guests dined at the restaurants onshore, such as the one below.
These restaurants, by the way, were very close to the
port. It is clear who their target audiences were . . .
And it was hard to refuse such a proposal - no matter the language, everyone knows the word "gratis"!
Well, it wasn't absolutely free of course, but a free side dish to accompany the main meal. Either way, it was very cheap!
And the local oysters looked simply divine! Personally, I like this type of oyster. They are much tastier than Atlantic ones, which are mainly eaten in the UK.
I'm sure you'd like to know if we actually tasted them, right? :)
No, we didn't this time, but we did try oysters from a local restaurant in the evening of the same day. We did not want to risk anything, especially since there were only a few days left on the cruise. If we went around Spain on our own, by car, we would have certainly tried them!
We also visited a local market there.
It was impressive, even though we arrived in the afternoon and, by that time, the market was getting ready to close.
However, we liked the prices! Generally, we noticed the trend that the further South we were, the better the seafood prices . . .
The sellers wereproud of their products :)
And what about the city itself?
Well, it seemed to be a strange one in our opinion.
We noticed a trend; the closer we were to the South, the poorer the cities were. Although, this was not a major discovery, but it appeared to be a vivid reality at the time.
This wonderful man was the first to greet tus at the port!
He looks Romanian, doesn't he?
He did not know how to play the violin, but his toothless grin was so honest that we couldn't resist his charm :)
Near the port, as well as in other parts of the city, we found some ruins; abandoned houses, overgrown balconies... Not as many as in Portugal, but the view was still sad.
Here, near the port, we saw houses with balconies in such disrepair . . . hmmm . . .
And what do you think about the cockroach icon on the name of this street???
The message is unclear. Is this street the holy defender of cockroaches or are there so many of them on this street that it must be marked somehow???
The city had a lot of strange sculptures, and not just modern ones. I actually liked the contemporary art, but they were rather strange...
Here are some examples:
I liked these structures a little bit more :)
The city is located on a hill, so the streets were quite steep.
We figured there must be a park that offered grand views from the top, so we searched immediately.
It was possible to get there by taxi, but that wasn't an option for the cruise. You must earn the right to dine there :) This is easily done in the Caribbean because you can just swim there!
And in Europe, you have to hike around the city. No taxi!
But it was hard to climb the hill, especially when the temperature was 86 degrees Fahrenheit (30 degrees Celsius). Hmm...
But we still managed to make it to the top . . . without any help :)
And views from the top appeared to be really nice.