Regent Seven Seas World Cruise 2020 sailing from Miami to Miami aboard The Mariner. This amazing journey was scheduled as an 131-day cruise from January 5 - May 17, 2020.
  • Day63

    Day 62 ~ 20,750 Miles, Phillip Island

    March 7 in Australia ⋅ ⛅ 59 °F

    Day 62 ~ 20,750 Miles

    It is probably not more 40 miles as the crow flies from Geelong to Philip Island but the Captain kept it in first gear all night to fill time on our revised itinerary.

    We received a warm reception from the local welcoming committee and a duo performing Drunken’ Sailor. Oddly enough, this is the song I sing to myself as I walk the long corridors of the ship when the seas prevent one from walking in a straight line and admit I have burst into song a few times when there have been other “drunken sailors” having the same issue.

    But I digress.

    We did have the opportunity to visit the Koala Conservation Centre and see 10 permanent Koala residents in what the Rangers call the “pensioners quarters”. The Centre is also treating koalas from the recent bush fires but because the intent is to return them to the wild they are understandably limiting their exposure to humans and to stress.

    After the Conservation Centre we did a nice 3-mile semi-guided hike through the Australian bush before returning to the ship.

    The evening brought the announcement of additional itinerary changes due to the ongoing Coronavirus restrictions being put in place by various nations and our trip is quickly becoming The Magical Mystery Tour.
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  • Day62

    Day 61 ~ 20,700 Miles, Geelong

    March 6 in Australia ⋅ ☁️ 61 °F

    Day 61 ~ 20,700 Miles

    The southern coastline of Australia heading west from Geelong is magnificent. Even on our cloudy drive along the Great Ocean Road the color of the water ranged from pale green to midnight blue topped by unending waves crashing into the rugged cliffs, sandy beaches, and jagged rocks. The road meanders along the coastline as it climbs and descends then twists and turns hugging the terrain.

    After arriving at Anchor Bay we turned inland to the Otway Fly Treetop Walk which felt like a walk into Jurassic Park with its ancient giant ferns and massive eucalyptus trees. The peeling bark of these giants and moss covered branches added to the other worldly feeling. We walked in the treetops along a steel bridge elevated 25-40 meters above the rain forrest floor.

    We had a late night departure from Geelong and a quick overnight cruise to Philip Island for our next adventure.
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  • Day60

    Day 59 ~ 20,300 Miles, Tasmania

    March 4 in Australia ⋅ ⛅ 61 °F

    Day 59 ~ 20,300 Miles

    I have written and rewritten today’s post multiple times trying to describe the beauty of Tasmania and the fun we had, but the bottom line is that we got to pet and feed kangaroos today and it just doesn’t get much better than that!

  • Day60

    Day 59 ~ 20,200 Miles, Burnie Tasmania

    March 4 in Australia ⋅ ⛅ 57 °F

    Day 59 ~ 20,200 Miles

    With the rising sun comes good news from home, my nephew’s surgery was successful. Thank you all for your prayers and kind words.

    Thanks and Glory to God

  • Day59

    Day 58 ~ 20,100 Miles

    It’s late here in the Tasman Sea and it is a night sky that I wish I could share with each of you. An iPhone picture can not possibly capture what I see. The colors range from the darkest of black interrupted by an extremely bright half moon to the pure white of cresting waves. Even this half moon lights the sky brighter than city lights and highlights the clouds from behind to create a glowing effect until it peaks from behind to cast beautiful rays of light onto the oceans surface. The moonlight captures the white-capped waves unlike a similar scene in daylight. The night sky above the moon is so full of stars that it seems unreal. The sound of the ship cutting through the sea is like a symphony, the gentle rocking of the ship feels like being wrapped in the arms of a loved one, and tonight one knows that this place was created by God.

    In this night, seeing this beauty, I pause to ask each of you to join me in a prayer of healing for my nephew, Joshua, who is waiting at this very moment to undergo a surgical procedure.

    I feel homesick for the first time.
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  • Day59

    Day 58 ~ 19,900 Miles, Sydney

    March 3, Tasman Sea ⋅ ☁️ 61 °F

    Day 58 ~ 19,900 Miles

    After 3 wonderful days in Sydney we left the harbor yesterday afternoon just as the weather was dramatically changing from a sunny and hot 98° to an overcast and windy 70°.

    The wind and the waves intensified as we left the safety of the harbor but the sailors seemed to be enjoying the speed at which they were cutting through the wind and waves or maybe they were just trying to hurry back to the pier.

    Today is a sea day and I have a constant view of the Australian coastline from the starboard side as we cruise south from Sydney before crossing over to Tasmania. Sadly I do see what appears to be smoke rising from a brush fire on the coastline near Sand Patch Point.
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  • Day57

    Day 56 ~ 19,600 Miles, Sydney

    March 1 in Australia ⋅ ☀️ 79 °F

    Day 56 ~ 19,600 Miles

    Day Two in Sydney and I spent the day shopping for a new Didgeridoo to add to my expansive collection of authentic Aboriginal instruments. Well, actually we spent the day exploring The Rocks area of Sydney and I stumbled across a Didgeridoo shop...who knew.

    The Rocks has a great history yet is alive with a very current vibe. After the First Fleet arrived bringing the convicts to Australia this area became home to the convicts while the more gentile arrivals laid claim to the other side of the harbor. Now it’s a collection of some of the oldest pubs, hotels, and churches along cobblestone streets, hidden alleyway eateries, locals and tourists mixing seamlessly shopping the designs and creations of local artists in an open air market, museums, an observatory, and yes, even a Didgeridoo shop all within view of the stunning harbor.Read more

  • Day56

    Day 55 ~ 19,600 Miles, Sydney

    February 29 in Australia ⋅ ⛅ 77 °F

    Day 55 ~ 19,600 Miles

    I carefully staked out my spot on the top deck at 10:30 this morning knowing full well that the Port Pilot was not scheduled to pull alongside until close to noon and that we wouldn’t be tied into our berth until 2PM but I did not want to miss one moment of arriving into Sydney Harbor.

    I was completely mesmerized by the beauty of this place. Sheer cliffs being pounded by the South Pacific’s powerful waves on the North Head and a low lying rocky outcrop dotted with light houses on the South Head with the city rising from the sea in the middle. Slowly and ever so carefully we followed the Pilot Boat passing crafts of every shape and size: sailboats, speed boats, catamarans, ferries, water taxis, yachts etc. Finally, we rounded the bend and the Opera House, Harbour Bridge and Sydney presented themselves. I was not disappointed.

    After clearing immigration we took an afternoon tour of the Opera House, Bondi Beach, Vaucluse, Rose Bay, and Paddington then ended the evening with a stroll around Woollhara, Harborside, and Cockle Bay before catching a shuttle back to our home away from home.

    Even now as I reflect on the day I’m drawn out to my balcony by the sounds and sights of fireworks along Oxford Street from the gay Mardi Gras celebration and numerous party boats cruising in the harbor waters.

    I’ll think about the CDC Travel warning for Italy later, now is to enjoy Sydney.
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  • Day55

    Day 54 ~ 19,000 Miles, Tasman Sea

    February 28, Tasman Sea ⋅ 🌙 66 °F

    Day 54 ~ 19,000 Miles

    It’s Day 2 at sea heading towards Sydney. Our final itinerary for Sydney to Sri Lanka is confirmed and all of our excursions are booked. Regent was unable to secure a berth in Melbourne so are rewarded with another port and an additional sea day.

    I would like to share some street signs from New Zealand. This country is not only polite but they have a fun sense of humor. I hope you enjoy the small differences from typical US signageRead more

  • Day53

    Day 52 ~ 18,100 Miles, Wellington

    February 26 in New Zealand ⋅ ⛅ 64 °F

    Day 52 ~ 18,100 Miles

    Move over Chicago, we are cruising out from the windiest city in the world, Wellington, New Zealand through the Cook Strait into the Tasman Sea towards Sydney, Australia. The Kiwis kept thanking us for the sunshine and warm weather because they are accustomed to sideways rain at this time of year. Thank you Mother Nature for providing wonderful weather during our time in NZ.

    It was a full day with stops at the War Memorial, Mount Victoria, the Botanical Garden, and a Cable Car ride up the hillside to Kelburn.

    Wellington is a beautiful modern city undergoing a large scale earthquake stabilization program with 22 high rise buildings slated to be removed and rebuilt and residential homes seemingly attached only to the sides of the steep hillsides. Most of the homes dotting the hillsides are walkups (but no amount of realtor marketing could convince me that 150+ steps straight up is a good thing to come home to). Some are lucky enough to have private cable cars with over 1000 private residential cable cars serving the well-healed in Wellington.

    I was truly moved at two stops today, first the War Memorial and second and unexpectedly at the Botanical Garden when I discovered the Peace Flame and in doing so the Hiroshima Stone.
    Both places serve as reminders of the importance of peace and that we should move forward with our eyes on the past

    “Ka kite ano”. Which in Maori means “until I see you again”.
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