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30th December, 2016


It was a windy arrival this morning in Civitavecchia with 25 knots onto the berth. With 1 tug ordered and lots of “Bow Thrusting”we kissed the fenders and landed softly alongside. Its 0730 and for many of our Guests they wouldn’t even have known we had arrived!!!

By 0745 all the Tour Buses are lined up directly opposite our gangway so it’s only a hop, skip and a jump to get on the coach. On Saga Sapphire we actually ask our Port Agents to try and secure a berth in close proximity to the terminal, coaches or shuttle bus.

With my wife Sally and daughters Amelia & Madeleine we joined the coach to take us to the train station for the exclusive Roma Express train transfer to Rome. The 45 min exclusive train ride takes us in to the heart of Rome and only 10 minutes’walk from St Peter's Square and the Vatican. It’s 20 years since I was last in Rome, however this was very special as I got to share the day with Sally and my 2 girls. We decided to make the most of the day by using the hop on/hop off bus. After a few photos at the Vatican we headed to the Trevi Fountain and performed the traditional ritual of throwing a coin in your right hand over your left shoulder –this will guarantee our return to Rome!

The next stop was the Spanish Steps with all 138 to conquer. From there we headed to the Colosseum and this the main historic monument I missed 20 years ago –It was certainly worth waiting for and as we were “snapping”we met a big group of restaurant staff who were on a whistle stop tour.

No visit to Rome would be complete without a traditional pizza from a wood fired oven, which then gave us the energy to complete our circuit and head back to St Peter's Square.

I’ve attached a few photos from my iPhone and a few taken by Victoria the Ship's Photographer –see if you can work out which is which???

Our "timely" return to Civitavecchia ensured we sailed on time, and headed down the west side of Sicily towards Malta.

Captain Julian Burgess

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.