On a recent Noordam cruise guests were treated to a call at Ashdod, Israel, one of the more unique places that Holland America Line visits. Among the hundreds of ports on the line’s roster are dozens of off-the-beaten-path destinations and rarely visited locales. If you’re looking to take a cruise this fall or winter to one of those “wow” spots, take a look at itineraries such as the 41-Day Turkish Discovery & Iberian Adventure Collectors’ Voyage that calls at Kusadasi, Turkey, with the famed Ephesus; or the
21-Day Atlantic Adventurer cruise that visits exotic Casablanca, Morocco. If Asia is on your “to-do” list, embark Volendam for a 30-Day Far East and Indonesian Collector Holiday voyage that calls at Komodo Island, home to the famous Komodo Dragon, along with other unique calls in Vietnam and Indonesia.
When Noordam was at Ashdod, Future Cruise Consultant Joanne went on the The Best of Jerusalem & the Old City tour and sent in her account of the day, along with some beautiful photos. Enjoy the visit to Jerusalem with Joanne.
The port of Ashdod, Israel, offers the opportunity to take a shore excursion to Jerusalem as well as some other spots in the country like the Dead Sea. I hopped on a 9-hour trip to Jerusalem since I haven’t been here in 30 years. It is a heavy duty excursion in that it is non-stop for the entire day, although we had a lovely buffet lunch at a kibbutz prior to the march through the old city.
There is little time for shopping in the markets or just meandering the old streets due to the ground that’s covered in all four quarters of the city. You will get to see the highlights of the city (Garden of Gethsemane, Holy Sepulcher church, the Upper Room, King David’s tomb, Dome of the Rock, Wailing Wall, Golgotha) in the short time there and if you haven’t visited, do yourself a favor and definitely go. No matter what your spiritual bearing is there is definitely a certain vibe at the Western (Wailing) Wall. Between the culture, history, politics and religion of the area it is one fascinating country.