Sunday, November 10, 2013

Day 2 - Sunday, Nov 3, 2013 - Livorno

We decided that since we had previously visited Pisa and Florence that this trip we would sleep in late and then get off in Livorno and simply wander around.  We had breakfast at the Lido (our usual omelet and fruit) and then headed down to board the shuttle to the center of Livorno.  We caught the 10:20 shuttle and were in Livorno by about 10:35.  We walked by the Tourist Info office and noticed a sign that talked about a canal tour boat.  Julie had researched Livorno and the canal boat tour seemed like a great way to see the city, however they shut down on Oct 31.  Apparently the tours were still running and we paid our 10 euros each for the tour at 11am.  We met the other 20 or so people for the tour and were guided from their office to the canal boat about 3 blocks away.  
The boat tour was great.  The guide presented the material in both English and Italian.  She discussed the fact that Livorno was a very powerful merchant port, with many rich families building palaces here as a part of their shipping work.  Livorno was originally pentagonal in shape with large walls.  Most of the walls have disappeared, but the old fort (from the early1600’s and the new fort from the late 1600’s) had much of their structure intact.  The canal boat tour also took us out into the harbor to see the sites out there.  Eventually we returned after about an hour.  












We left the boat tour and wandered the streets, stopping at a gelato place for a 2 scoop cone at around 12:30.  It was wonderful.  One interesting observation is that they pile two scoops side by side instead of on top of one another like we do in America. 

  


We then decided to take the walking tour number 4 which would take us out along the harbor.  (When we got off the ship, we were handed a great map that included four self-guided walking tours).  We walked several miles and were about ready to turn around when we finally made it to the newly restored boardwalk.  Wow, this was cool.  The inlaid marble walkways were gorgeous.  We eventually turned around and walked back to the place where we met the shuttle for the ride back to the ship.







Back on the ship we managed to get there just in time for a quick bite to eat in the Bistro and then we went in and watched the movie: “All You Need is Love”, which was a Swedish movie with subtitles that turned out to be a bit of a quirky romantic comedy with Pierce Brosnan (he spoke in English).
After the movie, we went back to our room, got ready for dinner and ended up having drinks in the Avenue Saloon (we were the only people there besides the wait staff until around 5:30).  We then went to dinner in the dining room.  Bob had ribeye steak and Julie had salmon (she loves their salmon).  One thing we both had which was amazing was the pumpkin soup with cinnamon croutons.  Excellent.  We got done in time to see the one show of the night.  Which were four acrobats doing a Circque du Soleil type of show.  It was excellent.  After the show we went to the Crystal Cove to listen to the pianist and then went to bed.

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