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ural guy

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About ural guy

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    Cool Cruiser

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  • Location
    United States
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    New York

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  1. I did a little checking, a canal boat is rental is roughly $3500 usd for 7 nights. That's for a boat that will sleep 4, includes gas, tolls, linens, etc. Several places offer rental, at various spots along the canal.
  2. And I messed up, Lockport and Brockport are both west of Palmyra, not east. Buffalo way on I-90, not Albany way (for my fellow NY'ers)
  3. I was in Lockport years back for a concert, there are also some nearby caves to explore. A lot of those old canal towns are nice to check out, they had money coming through them from the 1820's on, so some nice buildings with ornate detail. The decline of upstate NY in general from the 1960's and 1970's on helped to 'preserve' the buildings as there was no need to tear them down, no one had any desire to put $ into anything new. Middle daughter went to Brockport and with SUNY having the university there it's enabled them to retain a full, vibrant downtown with antique shops, ice
  4. Jazz- Funny you should write that. On Sunday I was standing in knee deep snow looking at lock 29 on the Erie Canal in beautiful Palmyra NY. One of the info boards had a picture of a canal boat that it looks like you can rent. My daughter confirmed that Brockport to the east not only has microbreweries that you can dock adjacent to, but also shower facilities further down for canal boaters. Lockport also has amenities easily accessed from the canal. My wheels were spinning, that looks like it could be a blast, but I have no experience in anything other than a kayak, and it coul
  5. I thought that about U as well, and figured I check them out for pricing, thinking there may be a bargain out there. Nope, not at all. Can't quote the exact price, but a full level about Vantage/Viking.
  6. I agree with those above who say that vaccinations for the crews will be a challenge. In many of their home countries there have been zero shots given. Then their age would be putting them at the bottom of the list. At this point, I don't think that private companies can buy vaccines, so it's not like the large companies that contract out the ship workers could jump in and take care of the workers. I am glad to see in my state, NY, that our 'essential workers', the folks at grocery stores/gas stations, who are face to face with the public every day, are bumped up in priority. T
  7. Between the $ we had paid for our canceled 2020 covid Tulip cruise which was never refunded, low water 2018 credit, and a few other credits, we booked Vantage's Danube Splendor (Regensburg to Budapest) for 19 November 2022. It's a 8 night cruise. By booking aquarium class we were able to include a 3 night Prague pretrip, and owe $280. We'll spend time in Budapest post cruise on our own. We've been to these cities before on a Viking cruise, but it will still be great to hopefully be out and about. I figured that Vantage wasn't going to refund our money anytime soon (we weren't
  8. That's beautiful, where there is life, there is hope. And I would love to be able to join you, and hope that I can. And to quote Flogging Molly, 'without hope, you might as well be blind.' https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rAVXbMWAzhc&ab_channel=MaartenvanVlijmen
  9. We still have our credits with Vantage for the April 2020 Tulip cruise that was canceled. We're looking at rebooking for Oct/Nov 2022. That's just based on my comfort level, not really a scientific analysis. Mentally I'd have the heebie-jeebies being around so many people and don't know if I could relax. We have booked 2 plane tickets to Portugal for Nov 2021, a 21 day trip. They are point tickets and easily canceled. Just plotting and planning, getting the map out and rereading saved articles and travel reports improved my mood. Portugal was picked as I was t
  10. Wow, lots of great info here. We went for 2 nights on our own before a cruise, so agree it's much cheaper, and easy to get to. Sending luggage ahead? Never thought of that. Just a note, when you do get on the train, your now smaller luggage should fit between the seats, when the train have the back to back seating arrangements. My shoulders are getting a bit old for the upper rack. Also good news on farmers market if we are ever there on a Saturday, thanks. Markets are always a good stop.
  11. I think you're on the right track to start with a 7 night cruise and time spent on each end, since it will be your first river cruise. I think there is something interesting at the starting and ending spots of most cruises, and European trains are easy to figure out and go about anywhere. We do like the longer 2 week cruises, but the cities can become a blur, and a bit tiring. Relaxing on the boat and skipping a tour is a nice option if you like reading or some alone time. We were on a 12 or 13 night Vantage, Budapest to Bucharest cruise, and a few couples had boarded in Amsterd
  12. Before I left the states, a buddy had told me that Trier was his favorite place when he was stationed in Germany. So for this pic, I was really trying to dial it up a notch. Plus, we had been on the cruise for 9-10 days at this point, so getting a day to do whatever I wanted, at my pace, was huge.
  13. Notamermaid, as always, thanks for the notes. Certainly is a pretty region, with tons to see. Fun to just wander and see where the day takes you. As far as what a difference a day can make, this pic is from our November 2018 visit to Trier. The day of the group tour was rainy and the city was crowded. On the Vantage cruise, they build in a 'free' day, the boat docks in Schweich and most people chose to take the optional (extra $) tour to Luxembourg. I used one of the e-bikes to revisit Trier on my own. Beautiful weather and fewer people.
  14. Interesting yes. Also super expensive, to me. I looked at the Milan to Zurich, 13 nights (7 nights on board ship, 3 on train, 3 hotel). The cheapest date, cheapest cabin, is $15,450 pp. What got me, is that even with that price, only 11 dinners and 9 lunches are included. You do get 13 breakfasts. Showed it to my wife, she liked the 16 nights we sent driving around Slovenia/Croatia on our own in Fall of 2019. Although we only got to visit Postojna caves without the Uniworld concert. I know it's apples to oranges, but $30k for a couple, we c
  15. To me, the best part of turkey is the soup I make the next day (and the stuffing with apples and cranberries). After you separate as much meat off the carcass as you can, boil it down. Separate liquid from solid chunks; liquid to fridge so the grease will rise and you can remove, solid stuff paw through after cooled and remove meat pieces. Next day the stock is like jello, into the crock pot with carrots, celery, onions and mushrooms. I play with it as it cooks down, season salt, some pepper, dark mustard to taste. I put all the dark meat and some white in about an h
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