We love when our guests send us photos and stories throughout their journey! There is nothing personal experience to truly show why we love cruising and especially embrace the concept of round the world trips.
Thanks to Peter and Gisela Werner for allowing us to share with you snippets of their wonderful cruise aboard the Silversea Silver Whisper.
Greetings from South Africa.
We have been on our voyage for almost two weeks now. And it has been very adventurous and beautiful. After our flight from Frankfurt to Nairobi via Adis Ababa Siver Sea booked us into one of the most beautiful hotels we had ever seen, the Hemingways, out side the city, only five minutes from Karen Blixen’s plantation (“Out of Africa”).
The colonial style hotel was situated in a huge lush green park. The friendliness of the staff was overwhelming and their food was excellent.
After two nights we flew to Mombasa, and we embarked the Silver Whisper.
The next day we spent in Zanzibar, and, courtesy of our travel agent Cruise Specialists in Seattle, we had a private car with a guide who showed us the sights of the city including the somewhat depressing former slave market.
And one more word about the private car in Zanzibar: we had a very good guide and a driver who managed the somewhat chaotic traffic easily. The guide provided a lot of historic and political information. On such a tour you can ask a lot of questions and get a much better picture of the country than on ordinary tours. Thank you very much for this great experience.
The next port of call was at Dzaoudzi, Mayotte, French Comores, where we only spent about 45 minutes in the town because it was far too hot. In Nosy Be, Madacascar it was so hot we did not even leave the ship. But on the next day, in Mahajanga, Madagascar, we did a 4 wheel drive tour into the country where we saw monkeys and crocodiles and small villages.
The poverty of the population was visible everywhere – the average income of the people is $42 per month. Again it was very hot. But the weather cooled down after two sea days when we entered South Africa at Richard’s Bay where we had a cruise on a small boat to watch crocodiles, hippos and a lot of different birds.
Then, in Durban we had an eight-hour tour into the mountains via Pietermaritzburg and we were surprised to see a countryside that reminded us of the Black Forest or Bavaria. It was so different from what we expected, green everywhere, modern cars and very good roads, more like Europe than Africa. Today we are on our way to East London and then Cape Town.
Above all – as I mentioned earlier – South Africa was the biggest surprise. It was almost European. Well, there is poverty, there are ghettos, but those people there are much better off than their brothers and sisters in Central and East Africa.
In Namibia we found a lot of people who still speak German as their mother tongue although their families have lived there for generations and Namibia ceased to be a German colony a hundred years ago.
World Cruise 15 has been one of our best and most interesting cruises ever, and as you know we have done quite a few.
From the captain down to the so friendly and helpful crew we knew more than two thirds of them already when we boarded the ship in Mombasa. The amazing experience was they knew us also. And we knew quite a few passengers from last year, too.
As you know the itinerary had to be changed due to Ebola. But that was not really bad. We had the opportunity to see St. Helena, the original tomb of Napoleon and the grand home where he spent his life in exile until he died. For me it was interesting because one of my direct ancestors was a soldier in the French army and marched to Moscow with him and was fortunate enough to come home alive.
In the Caribbean we saw two new islands, St. Lucia and St. Barts. They were real beauties.
All in all, we have enjoyed our cruise thoroughly, we have seen such a variety of places that our minds still work on the experiences – nothing can take them away from us.
Silversea offered a good variety of tours and excursions and those we booked were all very interesting and worth the money. In addition, all the participants were always very disciplined, nobody was late and everybody was interested – which is not always the case.
Speaking of hosts, Susan and Kevin were perfect as well. We saw them every day and enjoyed the Cruise Specialists’ chat at noon on sea days. And in Ft. Lauderdale we were able to meet Kay and Alan from last year and had lunch with them. That was very nice.
The itinerary was well chosen and allowed us to see a completely new world, Africa – where we had never been. And it was so different from what we had imagined before.
And thank you very much for organizing this great cruise for us. We will never forget it.
Peter and Gisela Werner