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4th January, 2013

El Ferrol

El Ferrol

Sadly El Ferrol is our last port of call for this ‘Christmas in the Canary Islands' cruise.

Famous for its superb natural harbour and its longstanding connection with the Spanish Navy, this northern Spanish port was bathed in glorious sunshine all day.

It was if we arrived at the middle of the night as it was pitch black as we approached the berth at 7.45am. The local time is one hour ahead of GMT and sunrise today is not until 9.05am!

The town itself is fairly well positioned to give guests access to Santiago de Compostela. After a relaxing bus ride through the beautiful Galician countryside the tours arrived at the historic district of ‘Santiago De Compostela’. This excursion to the famous pilgrimage site, started off with a visit to the cathedral built on the spot where St James' remains were reputedly found. Next it took in Obradoiro Square and a brief walk around the local surroundings, before finishing with refreshments in an elegant hotel originally built to house pilgrims at the end of their long journey.

For those wishing for shorter tour and less strenuous tour, there was the shore excursion ‘Galicia’s Scenic Coastline’.

This panoramic tour around El Ferrol took in some of the city's military history and then drove into the wonderful Galician countryside. On the way they passed delightful villages and unspoilt beaches, before refreshments were served at a local restaurant. With the brilliant sunshine and warm temperature akin to a good English summer’s day this tour turned out to be a really enjoyable tour.

Our call at Ferrol, with such unexpectedly warn and sunny weather was the “icing on the cake”! I didn’t think we would have such a hot day so late in the cruise, neither did a majority of the passengers who had unpack their shorts and bathers to continue to top up their sun tans! You probably think I’m exaggerating but believe me it was unusually hot. The temperature in the direct sunlight was in the middle twenties and this was evident by the red faces that attended the 'Farewell Cocktail Party' !

Tomorrow is our last day at sea. I am really pleased for everyone that the high pressure is holding fast and the crossing should be very comfortable. It makes packing so much easier when the ship is not being tossed around with drawers and wardrobe doors banging closed with the motion!

It’s packing time for me too as come Southampton I sign off this good lady for the last time. I’ve enjoyed both the Caribbean Celebration and this Christmas Cruise. Who knows what the future will hold? Well actually, for those interested I’m on Quest for Adventure for the Holy Land Cruise in April then again for the Legends of Antiquity in October. I’ll be delighted to welcome you aboard on either of those two cruises.

Until then thank you for reading my blog. I hope you’ve enjoyed journey with us to exotic places in the world.

As they say in Welsh. Pob bendith (Every Blessing).

The opinions expressed are those of the author and are not held by Saga unless specifically stated.

The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal, medical or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Always obtain independent, professional advice for your own particular situation.