Salalah–Mar 16, 2013

This is our second visit here. This will be a short post because we didn’t actually go anywhere. When that happens I don’t bother posting anything but our readers deserve to be warned about this place.IMGP8848

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Muscat–Mar 14, 2013

We are back in Muscat. No tours planned as we did a long one in 2011. Instead we have a day of walking planned. The goal: find a specific bracelet for a friend of ours.

Muscat has a very convenient harbour: take a short shuttle bus ride (you are not allowed to walk inside the port) and you are at the gate. Outside are expensive taxis! We didn’t bother negotiating because the main souk and downtown are only 800m from the gate.IMGP8802

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Hands on Cooking with Hein Willemsen–Mar 13, 2013

It has been a while since we cooked with a guest chef. This is in fact the first time on this cruise. We will take some credit for getting guest chefs on board, it didn’t seem as if anything was planned from the beginning. Regardless, we have an excellent chef to guide us. Hein Willemsen used to own/operate a restaurant in Holland for 17 years but now he produces a delicious mustard/dill sauce. He attained Holland’s highest level in 1986 as Master Chef.IMGW0708

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Mumbai–Mar 11, 2013

Day two and we have another list. This list is shorter because they are farther from the ship. And of course it is Monday so the famous Mumbai traffic is back in play.

Our first goal is the tiffin-wallahs at Churchgate Rail station. This is a weekday event at 1130 where food deliveries arrive en-masse and get sent out for delivery to offices. To ensure that we get there in time we start at The Tea Room. This is a wonderful oasis in the sea of live outside. We order tea (you get to choose from first or second pour!) and scones. Raj ordered a typical breakfast dish called Pawa. It consists of rice, potato and some flakes that add a wonderful flavour. Yummy all round and we are now fortified forIMGP8444

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Mumbai–Mar 10, 2013

Its March so we must be near Mumbai, at least that is what seems to be happening since 2010. We have an overnight stay in this wonderful city. Full of life, it has a lot of energy. And it requires energy to see. In our favour is that it is Sunday and a Hindu festival so there will be little traffic. And best of all, we have Raj as our driver again.IMGP8337

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Colombo–Mar 7, 2013

Sri Lanka previously was known as Ceylon. This fascinating port city is full of life but also very visible security. The security is a left over from the past Tamil insurgent activity but none of that is visible. It is also because there is a large naval and military base that is part of the port area. The cruise ship dock itself has some shops. A bit of a walk gets you out of Gate 1, a bit longer walk gets you to Gate 2. Gate 2 seemed more convenient as it brings you right out at York Street. The map provided by the ship is actually useful here, it covers the Fort and Petah areas of the town. Both are walkable from the ship although there are lots of tuktuks available. (Take the black or orange ones with white number plates, others will try to take you to jewellery shops of their choosing.)IMGP8020

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De Librije Dinner–Mar 6, 2013

All of the HAL ships have a Le Cirque dinner available several times during longer cruises. Le Cirque is of course a famous restaurant in New York City. We have had several of these on the MS Rotterdam, all delicious and well presented.

Special on the MS Rotterdam is De Librije dinners. This restaurant, located in Zwolle, has 3 Michelin stars.IMGW0631

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De Librije Dinner–Mar 6, 2013

All of the HAL ships have a Le Cirque dinner available several times during longer cruises. Le Cirque is of course a famous restaurant in New York City. We have had several of these on the MS Rotterdam, all delicious and well presented.

Special on the MS Rotterdam is De Librije dinners. This restaurant, located in Zwolle, has 3 Michelin stars.IMGW0631

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