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Crown Cruise Vacations | August 20, 2017

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Seeing a revival of traditional Tahitian tattoos

June 12, 2017 | Jackie Sheckler Finch

Tour guide Teiva moved over, thinking he was blocking my picture. But he was my picture.

The tattoos on his arm and neck were fascinating. When I told Teiva I would like to photograph them and learn more about the art, Teiva was happy to oblige.

“These are in honor of my family and my heritage,” he said, gesturing to the designs on his left arm, hand and fingers.  A shark tattooed on his arm and an eel on his neck are “the protectors for my family.” Read more...

Spanish shore stops a chance to enjoy traditional migas

June 7, 2017 | Jackie Sheckler Finch

Roaming from place to place to tend their flock, Spanish shepherds created a tasty inexpensive dish prepared over an open fire in a single pan. The basic ingredient was easy to find – stale bread.

Nothing went to waste in the humble life of a shepherd and the dish known as “migas” was comforting, filling and simple to prepare. Today, migas – which literally means “bread crumbs” –  is still popular in the Extremadura region of Spain, served in homes, bars, hotels and fancy restaurants. Read more...

Oceania Sirena’s Tuscan Steak specialty restaurant serves great steak – and lobster

May 31, 2017 | Jackie Sheckler Finch

I dined at Sirena’s specialty restaurant Tuscan Steak and ordered lobster. Why not? I know that Tuscan specializes in steak but I was Just in the mood for a great lobster dinner. I was not disappointed.

Nearby diners said their steaks were great but I also noticed that some looked at my lobster with envy. Plus, I got a wonderful window seat in Tuscan Steak to watch the ocean as I dined. Read more...

New ‘Beauty and the Beast’ takes to the sea aboard Disney Dream

May 24, 2017 | Jackie Sheckler Finch

A tale as old as time will take to the stage of the Disney Dream beginning Nov. 6 when the ship sails three- and four-night cruises to the Bahamas from Port Canaveral, Florida.

The brand-new musical production was inspired, of course, by Disney’s new live-action adaptation of the animated classic that is now thrilling theater audiences. Read more...

Oceania Sirena library is outstanding and serene

May 17, 2017 | Jackie Sheckler Finch

By Jackie Sheckler Finch

Most ships have a library of some sort but the Oceania Sirena library is outstanding. It is one of the largest libraries I have ever seen on a ship of any size.

Some might have a small section or a room set aside for books to borrow. One ship even had a part-time librarian who would be in the library room to check out books from the locked bookcases. Of course, you had to make sure to visit that library when the part-time librarian was there or you were out of luck. Read more...

AmaWaterways shares recipe for Lamb Navarin

May 10, 2017 | Jackie Sheckler Finch

By Jackie Sheckler Finch

One of the great joys of travel is savoring local cultures and cuisine. And, thanks to the generosity of AmaWaterways, I can try to create a spring specialty that is a European favorite.

The recipe doesn’t sound very difficult and I can find the ingredients in my hometown. Known as Lamb Navarin, the traditional treat is lamb stew bathed in a decadently rich gravy. It is usually accompanied by fresh root vegetables, sweet peas and polenta. Read more...

Cruise back in time to ‘Love Generation’ aboard Celebrity Summit

May 3, 2017 | Jackie Sheckler Finch

By Jackie Sheckler Finch

Remember Peter Noone crooning “I’m into Something Good?” How about the Hollies firing it up with “Long Cool Woman in a Black Dress?” Or The Guess Who with “American Woman?”

The music, the memories and the spirit of the love generation will come together once again when the 2018 Flower Power Cruise sets sail aboard the Celebrity Summit from Feb. 24 through March 3, 2018.  The cruise will depart from Ft. Lauderdale to Aruba and Curacao. Read more...

Cruising to French Polynesia aboard Oceania Sirena

April 26, 2017 | Jackie Sheckler Finch

By Jackie Sheckler Finch

Ah, Tahiti… The name conjures images of balmy beaches, spectacular sunsets, friendly folks and long lazy days sweeping away cares of the world.

The thought of visiting Tahiti is certainly a dream scenario. Never did I think it would happen but here I am heading for that faraway island. Read more...