How many miles from Texas to Singapore?

We set sail on The Mariner of the Seas on April 21 on a 41-day journey to the other side of the world — From Galveston, Texas, to Singapore!
In my blog, I’ve tried to give an up-close and personal experience for my readers — taking them along for the ride to 10 countries and 13 ports of call.
I hope that each description of our excursions helped to make the journey real for my readers.
This cruise consisted of three, two-week cruises…each one spectacular in its own way.
It was amazing how the miles seemed to go by so quickly, even though the average speed of the ship was about 18-20 knots.
We were amazed as we checked on the ship’s TV channel daily to see the speed, sea depth, and total distance from the last port.
The first leg of the cruise was from Galveston to Barcelona, which totaled 5,456 nautical miles. From Barcelona to Dubai, we covered another 5,048 miles. On the third and final two-week cruise from Dubai to Singapore, which ended on June 1, a total of 3,693 nautical miles were logged.
Drum roll please! Our 41-day cruise from Galveston to Singapore equaled a combined total mileage for the entire journey of: 14,197 nautical miles!!!
At around 1:00 a.m. on June 2, we boarded Emirates Air for our flight back. It took seven hours to fly from Singapore to Dubai, with about 4-4.5 hour layover in Dubai. We left Dubai on an 18-hour flight straight to Houston, for a total return trip time of 29 hours!
This would explain why my internal clock is still mixed up, and why I’m dreaming about far away, exotic lands.
Until next time…
(Look for a link to Trilla’s Travels at http://www.ourtribune.com)

Docked in Singapore, here is my last glimpse of the Mariner -- I'm going to miss her!

Docked in Singapore, here is my last glimpse of the Mariner — I’m going to miss her!


We were surprised to see our flight path back to Houston!

We were surprised to see our flight path back to Houston from Singapore, via Dubai!

An update on our 41-day Trans-Atlantic cruise to date!

Just to recap – it’s been a while since our continuing cruise statistics were gathered. I forgot to post the total mileage from Galveston to Barcelona, where the first of three, 2-week cruises ended.
When the Mariner of the Seas pulled into the port in Barcelona on May 6, the total cruise distance was 5,456 nautical miles. I’m amazed that time seems to be flying by…
We left the Port of Galveston on April 21, with our first stop Nassau in The Bahamas. From Nassau we sailed to Funchal, Madeira, then on to Gibraltar. The next stop was in Spain – Alicante, and ending in Barcelona, which is also the beginning of the second cruise!
We had many wonderful adventures at every destination, each with its own special memories. If I had to choose a favorite, I could not!
I will remember the tropical, beautiful surroundings of Paradise Island in The Bahamas; the fabulous, floral countryside and wine tasting in Madeira; the vistas from the Rock of Gibraltar and the Barbary Apes greeting us there; the quaint setting of Alicante, Spain, and view of the Castle of Santa Barbara, plus a visit to Town Hall Square and the Cathedral of Alicante.
Last but not least, Barcelona – the city of tourists! You can see why people love this lively Mediterranean city! The architecture, the castles, the museums, its proximity to Montserrat – and the list goes on and on.
Uh hum! There are some things not listed in the brochure, and we found out about one of them this week. A letter from Captain Flemming was delivered to our stateroom, which contained a warning about pirates in the Sea of Aden and how the ship would react in the event of an attack. In fact, he said we will have a drill to instruct passengers about pirate procedures. We were told not to be alarmed if we see small crafts approaching the ship. Ship security will be on high alert and, if necessary, the captain will zig-zag the ship to avoid the pirates. We are asked to keep drapes drawn during this period so that no light can be seen at night. Wow, I feel much better now… Well, at least until May 16-18 when this adventure will occur.
In the meantime, we were treated to uproarious laughter by John Martin’s comedy show last night in the Savoy Theatre. If you ever get a chance to see Martin, get ready for a real treat! He has CDs for sale, but you’ll have to check online to see if you can order them. Do it, if you can!
Now that we’re cruising through the Mediterranean, many well-known geographic names are passing by on both sides, even though we cannot see them. We sailed west-to-east by the island of Sicily off the tip of Italy to our north, and Benghazi south of us.
Today looks like another nice day to enjoy the Mediterranean sun on deck, with mild temperatures hovering around 70. As I write this at 8:30 a.m. on May 9, the air temp is 59 degrees F; sea depth is 7,780 feet and the distance from Barcelona is 1,147 nautical miles. Total distance for us on this day (19 of our 41-day cruise) is 6,603 nm.
The Mariner of the Seas will arrive at the City of Alexandria tomorrow morning, May 10, where our excursion to Cairo takes us to visit the pyramids! We will also take a boat ride on the Nile River, where they say we’ll be treated like Pharos…so come back soon for my next report!
Look for a link to Trilla’s Travels at http://www.ourtribune.com!

Mere words cannot describe Montserrat near Barcelona!

Mere words cannot describe Montserrat!

Day 12 – We made it!

Madeira is a beautiful mountain island of Portugal. City of Funchal in foreground.

Madeira is a beautiful mountain island of Portugal. City of Funchal in foreground.

A Taste of Madeira:
Today marked the end of our Mariner of the Seas Trans-Atlantic ocean voyage to Europe. We sailed out of Galveston on April 21 and left the port of Nassau on April 24. Eight nights and seven days later, we docked at Funchal, Madeira, before dawn – around 6-6:30 a.m. today.
Madeira is part of an archipelago, which belongs to Portugal. It is spectacular, to say the least!
Our only complaint of the day was an overcast sky! Otherwise, we were astonished by this little Portuguese Island!
I will never forget the sight that sparkled in front of my eyes as we were approaching the dock in Funchal. It was as if I were viewing a Christmas village, as every part of the island was aglow with thousands of lights that were the homes and businesses on the hillsides and mountainsides of the island – I was simply amazed!
As daylight approached, and as we paused at the first stop of our excursion, we could see the picturesque marina and the many terracotta-tiled roofs of all the homes and businesses.
Madeira means “wooded island” in Portuguese and it lives up to that name. However, we found that the island’s small fishing villages, crops of bananas and grapes to be most surprising.
Although there are no parcels of flat land anywhere in sight, the island is covered in thousands of patches of terraced gardens packed full of banana plants, grape vines or flowers, making this island an absolute wonderland!
Our tour guide told us that Madeira earned a prestigious title – something like, “Floating gardens of the Atlantic.” A pleasant, constant temperature that stays within a variation of merely 10 degrees is said to be the reason why.
We learned that the crops are grown on the island according to the altitude levels on the mountain. For example, different flowers are grown plentifully year around at different altitudes, depending on the species of plants. Near the coast, you find flowers and bananas in abundance. The next level is the vines – grapevines and floral vines. Higher up the mountain is European forest, and at the highest level only smaller shrubs. Not one inch of the island is idle.
Madeira claims the highest coast in all of Europe at the cliffs of Miradouro Do Cabo Girao! The view is truly breathtaking! They welcome cruise ship passengers into their world for the sake of tourism.
The people here learn to speak English as part of their curriculum, and at matriculation they are expected to know perfect Portuguese, speak English and their choice of French, German or Spanish.
Wine is produced and exported here in abundance, along with bananas, leather, flowers and textiles. They are respectfully known for delicately embroidered goods and lace. We sampled a couple of local brands of wine, while enjoying cheese and fresh-baked bread. Yum!
In a phrase – I fell in love with Madeira and the island’s beauty and resourcefulness!
See you Saturday, after we have toured Gibraltar. Remember, we are cruising all the way to Singapore so come back often!
You can also find my link at http://www.ourtribune.com.
Highest coast in Europe is found at Madeira!

Highest coast in Europe is found at Madeira!