Friday, August 30, 2019

New York's 911 Memorial

The final stop on our cruise was New York City.
We've been to NYC, but had never visited the 911 memorial
 and since we had time before our flight, we checked it out.

 The building built to replace the TwinTowers is One World Trade Center.
It is the tallest building in North America.

 Nearby is the 911 Memorial, two reflecting pools placed in the footprints of the twin towers
with the largest man-made waterfalls in the US.

The names of all the 911 victims and the also the six victims of the 1993 attack
 are inscribed in bronze around the pools.
A white rose is placed on the name to signify a birthday.

We didn't have time to tour the museum, but certainly appreciated the memorial. 
Lest we forget...

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

St. John's Newoundland

We arrived back in North America and stopped at St. John's Newfoundland in Canada.

Although it was late in the season to see whales, we took a puffin tour and had a marvelous time.

 Our tour boat took us to Gull Island in Witless Bay Ecological Reserve
and, wow, did we see puffins!

Although the nesting season was almost over, lots of puffs remained in the grassy areas 
and we got plenty of photos of the cute birds.

 We also saw thousands of common murre, a penguin-like bird.
They dotted every inch of the rocky areas.

One of our guides released a a young murre which had been found onshore and needed help getting back to sea.

The tour was one of my favorite parts of the trip.  

Newfoundland was beautiful!

Monday, August 26, 2019

Paamuit & Nuuk, Greenland

Greenland is a huge island that is sparsely populated.
We stopped at the small burg of Paamuit, a town of 1500 residents.

The church is the centerpiece of the town, surrounded by colorful homes and a small cemetery.

 Interestingly, the town had a soccer field with artificial turf.
Paamuit, was small but scenic and friendly.

 Next, we sailed on to Nuuk, the capital.

 Nuuk was a vibrant town with lots of friendly people milling around on a warm Sunday.

 The meat market was a popular place with selections of seal, reindeer and seafood.

What a lovely and unusual place!

Thursday, August 22, 2019

Greenland - Formidable Fjords, Gorgeous Glaciers & Icebergs!

We sailed on to Greenland, traversing many beautiful and majestic fjords.

We cruised from Paamuit to Nuuk, along the southern edge of Greenland.
There were some formidable fjords with cascading waterfalls and fields of snow.

 Enormous icebergs floated by.

And glaciers were grinding down the mountainsides.

 Can you see the village in the lower left corner?
That's a boat coming out to circle our ship and greet us!
I guess they don't get much action other than the occasional cruise ship.

  Here's a closer look at the village.

And our welcoming commitee!

This was one of the most dramatic parts of our voyage.
Greenland is gorgeous!

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Iceland's Golden Circle

The next port of call was Reykjavik, the capital of Iceland.
We did the most recommended tour, the Golden Circle,
 which is a 300 kilometer route looping from Reyjavik to the Gulfoss waterfalls,
to the geyser geothermal area and then to the Thingvellir National Park.

We saw the dramatic Gulfoss waterfall,
which is 105 high and has two drops.

It was every bit as beautiful and powerful as Niagara Falls

We also visited the geyser area and witnessed the Strokker geyser erupting.
There is a second, even larger geyser, aptly call Geyser which  erupts less frequently.
 We also explored boiling mud pots, hot springs and fumaroles.
We also had a wonderful lunch there.

Finally we visited the Thingvellir National Park where, geologically,
 two tectonic plates are drifting apart, the North American and the Eurasian plates.

This is one of the few places in the world where you can walk between two continents in the Mid Atlantic rift.

Back in Reykjavik, we visited the Perlan, a museum extolling the wonders of Iceland.
Atop the Perlan there are 360* views of the city.

Iceland was a wonderful friendly country.
A lovely destination.

Monday, August 19, 2019

Exploring Iceland

We have arrived in Iceland. 
What a beautiful and unique place!

Our first port was the sleepy village of Isofjordur, in the Westfjords of Iceland.
There we explored the maritime museum and met a few friendly cats. 
That's our cruise ship in the distance.

A short drive away is the little village of Bolungarvik.

Once again, it was like visiting the past as we toured a little church.

We also visited the Osvor Museum, 
a fascinating replica of an old fishing outpost.
We were greeted by a local wearing a skin suit worn by the sailors of yesteryear.

 A look at her skin shoes
The boat anchor

And a peek inside the fish drying house

The lighthouses are quite unique here.
Almost all of them are bright orange sitting high on a cliff.
Then we sailed on to Reykjavik, the capital.

Saturday, August 17, 2019

Faroe Islands, Denmark

Our next destination was the Faroe Islands, 
an archipelago located about halfway between Norway and Iceland.

 Its a lovely secluded place, almost as if set in a different time.

There are quaint thatched roof homes and shops.

These historic buildings house the government offices.

And there's a lovely harbor with many types of boats.

We took a boat to see the cliffs of Vestmanna.
Can you see the sheep on the hillside?

 There were also many stunning waterfalls along the cliffs.

A waterfall along the road.

While walking the island, we saw this whalebone archway,
 which is very emblematic of the islands.
Its a beautiful place.