We Did It!

Our transportation, accommodation, food and entertainment cost so far

Nov 23 ~ Day #197
Budget to date
Spent today
Total to date
Daily average
Total
$19700
$15.00
$17041.71
$86.51
Miles by Road
Miles by Sea
Miles by Air
Miles by Train
Total Miles
16084.6
12056.7
7662
196
35999.3

We Did It!

When we began this adventure we set ourselves a challenge. To complete this trip on an average of $100/day or less.

As you can see from the recap of our final totals, we not only met that challenge, we exceeded it.

We traveled for a total of 197 days on an average of $86.51/day. Not bad!

Thank You! Thank You! Thank You!

First we’d like to say a heartfelt thank you to all the friends and family we stayed with along the way. We could not have achieved our goal without your generous hospitality.

We have mentioned all of you in each appropriate blog post but we would like to thank you all once again. We couldn’t have done it without you.

Putting Things in Perspective

When we mention the mileage, the number of days, places visited, etc. sometimes things just become a blur and the true magnitude is not particularly clear. So, here we’re going to recap things and try to bring some perspective.

Mileage

The total miles traveled, including road, train, sea and air, was 35,999.3. Too bad we couldn’t have added just 0.7 of a mile more. That would have pushed us to an even 36,000 miles.

But, to put this mileage in perspective, the circumference of the earth, at the equator, is 24,901.55 miles.

That means we could have traveled around the globe almost one and a half times. Wow!

Days Traveled

I don’t think we actually calculated the number of days we were going to be traveling when we started this adventure.

Oh sure, we knew the day we were going to start. We also knew the day we were going to fly back home. Both were booked before we set out. But we didn’t actually take the time to calculate just how long the time in between those dates was.

Total number of days traveled = 197.

If you apply an average of 30 days to a month, then we traveled for a total of 6.6 months, more than half a year. Again – wow!

Cruises and More Included in the Trip

It seems amazing even to us what we were able to pack into this trip. Here’s a quick recap.

Cruises

Our trip included three cruises:

  • a two week Alaska cruise
  • a six day Greek Islands cruise
  • a two week TransAtlantic cruise

That’s a total of 34 days – more than a month – spent on cruise ships.

Narrowboats in the UK

We were able to spend an entire week on a narrowboat on the Trent/Mersey canal system in the UK.

Orlando and Disney

We spent two weeks in Orlando at two different timeshare resorts and spent time at more than one Disney theme park.

Landmarks Visited

Along the way we were fortunate to visit many landmarks both in North America and Europe.

Here’s a few:
United States

  • Carlsbad Caverns
  • Monument Valley
  • Grand Canyon

Canada

  • Victoria, British Columbia (a must-see)
  • Hell’s Gate, British Columbia
  • Columbia Ice Fields, Alberta
  • Banff and Jasper, Alberta
  • Lake Louise, Alberta
  • Terry Fox Monument, Thunder Bay, Ontario
  • Reversing Falls, New Brunswick
  • St. Andrews-By-The-Sea, New Brunswick
  • Confederation Bridge, between New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island
  • Birthplace of Canadian Confederation, Charlottetown, PEI
  • Peggy’s Cove, Nova Scotia

England

  • Buckingham Palace
  • Tower Bridge
  • Tower of London
  • British Parliament Buildings
  • Big Ben
  • British Museum
  • Stratford-Upon-Avon, birthplace of Shakespeare

Spain

  • La Sagrada Familia, Barcelona
  • Dénia Castle, Dénia

Portugal

  • Madeira, the home of Madeira wine

Greece

  • Santorini

Croatia

  • the old walled city of Dubrovnik

Italy

  • St. Mark’s Square, Venice
  • the ruins of Pompeii
  • the ruins of Paestum
  • the Amalfi Coast

And, I’m sure there are things we are forgetting. It’s time for us to go back and re-read all the posts we have made along the way and to review all the photos and videos we have as well.

This was the trip of a lifetime for us. We will continue to travel, of course, but it is unlikely that we will ever again take such an extensive trip. It was a great adventure but a very long time to be away from home.

We will continue to have, we hope, many, many more adventures. But, perhaps shorter ones this time. 🙂

Thank you to everyone who has followed along with us and to those who have made comments as well. It was a pleasure to share this adventure with you.

End of Our TransAtlantic Cruise

Our transportation, accommodation, food and entertainment cost so far

Nov 08 ~ Day #182
Budget to date
Spent today
Total to date
Daily average
Total
$18200
$61.47
$16323.39
$89.69
Miles by Road
Miles by Sea
Miles by Air
Miles by Train
Total Miles
15551+15=15566
8185.5+3871.2=12056.7
7662
168+28=196
35480.7

Current Location: Davie, Florida

Today’s Total Expenses: $51.47

Transportation: $30.00
consisting of:
$10.00 – cab from cruise port to TriRail
$5.00 – TriRail
$15.00 – cab from TriRail to pick up our car

Accommodation: $31.47 (camping)

Miles Traveled Today:
Road Miles: 15 (Fort Lauderdale to Davie, Florida)
Sea Miles: 3871.2 (3364 Nautical Miles – La Palma to Miami)
Train Miles: 28 (TriRail Miami to Fort Lauderdale)

Disembarking in Miami

Our ship had actually arrived in Miami late last night, so the disembarkation process was able to start very early in the morning – 7:00am!

If you wanted your luggage taken off the ship for you, you needed to have it outside your stateroom door the night before.

Fortunately, we were traveling with backpacks so when we disembarked we were able to carry all our luggage with us and not have to wait for our group to be called. People that had put their luggage out the night before had been sorted into groups and had to leave their staterooms and wait in designated areas for their group to be called. We could get off when we liked because we could take our luggage with us.

Long Line Up for U.S. Customs and Immigration

After a leisurely breakfast, we headed back to our room, picked up our loaded backpacks, a carry-on bag and our laptop computer, also in its own bag, and headed to the gangway to leave the ship.

The line up for customs and immigration was HUGE!

Standing there with fully loaded backpacks got pretty tired after the first half hour. Mine wasn’t too bad as it is actually smaller than Geoff’s. However, Geoff has a bad back and just standing around is difficult for him. But, standing around with a heavy backpack was just too much. He needed to take his backpack off.

The line was pretty bunched up so I had to ask the people behind us to back up a little bit so Geoff could actually get his backpack off.

We then edged our way up to Immigration for the next little while, pushing our luggage along bit by bit.

Best U.S. Immigration Officer EVER

Some people may not know this, but the immigration lines that say U.S. Citizens can also be used by Canadians. That’s because Canadians don’t need to be finger printed or have their photos taken.

So, as we got closer to the front of the line, I mentioned to the person that was directing people to various immigration officers that we were Canadian.

We were immediately whisked out of the long line and right to an available immigration officer.

I think I’ve mentioned before that I never like dealing with government officials. You never know what they’ll be like. With some people, if you put them in a uniform, they feel like they have to be officious and obnoxious.

Well, not this guy. He was smiling and happy and pleasant.

As he scanned our passports he actually started joking with us. And then he said, “Oh, Wait a minute. We can’t let you through too fast. We can’t have any Americans thinking that Canadians can get through the lines faster than they can.” And he then started to tap his fingers on the counter and whistle. Then he said, smiling, “I guess that’s long enough.”

We told him that this was our best experience ever and he said he thought Canadians were great. He said, “I’ve never gotten any attitude from a Canadian.” And, after a short pause, a little smirk passed over his face and he said, “Of course, that could have something to do with the fact that I carry a gun!”

We all chuckled. Geoff and I thanked him again and we were on our way. He had even marked our card so that we didn’t have to stop at Customs.

Camping Again

Before leaving Florida in early September we had prepaid our camping fees so we didn’t have to worry when we came back. The receipt was a little cryptic, though, so I had said to the manager, “You had better be here when we get back.” And he had assured us that he would be.

Well, as I’m sure you’ve already guessed, he wasn’t there any more.

It took a little sorting out but the new management accepted the receipt (that goodness we had one and that we’d kept it) and all was well.

Sailing Past Eleuthera

Our transportation, accommodation, food and entertainment cost so far

Nov 07 ~ Day #181
Budget to date
Spent today
Total to date
Daily average
Total
$18100
$102.34
$16261.92
$89.84
Miles by Road
Miles by Sea
Miles by Air
Miles by Train
Total Miles
15551
8185.5
7662
168
31566.5

Current Location: On Board Celebrity Century En Route to Miami

Today’s Total Expenses: $102.34 (cruise cost includes transportation, accommodation, food and entertainment)

Miles Traveled Today:
We will record the miles for the Atlantic Crossing on November 8th when we arrive in Miami

Sailing Between Eleuthera and the Abacos

Early in the cruise we checked the chart in the main foyer that shows the course the ship will be taking.

To our delight, it showed that we would be sailing through the Eleuthera Channel which is between Eleuthera and the Abacos.

We had asked the staff to find out for us the estimated time that we would be passing Eleuthera. We didn’t want to miss getting a glimpse of our island as we sailed by.

The staff member we asked for the information actually called the Bridge to get the information for us! And, it seemed we would be passing Eleuthera somewhere between noon and 2:00pm at our current course and speed.

We were determined to be on deck when that happened. Although the weather looked like it might not co-operate. It was still a bit overcast with the odd bit of rain every now and then.

Passing Eleuthera

The weather cleared, thank goodness, and we got our first glimpse of Eleuthera at about 2:30pm. We stayed on deck until we couldn’t see it anymore, feeling just a little homesick.

However, we still won’t be home until November 23rd as we still have more things planned for our time in Florida.

So, we bid farewell to Eleuthera and looked forward to ending our transAltantic cruise in Miami tomorrow.

Heavy Seas and High Winds

Our transportation, accommodation, food and entertainment cost so far

Nov 06 ~ Day #180
Budget to date
Spent today
Total to date
Daily average
Total
$18000
$102.34
$16159.58
$89.76
Miles by Road
Miles by Sea
Miles by Air
Miles by Train
Total Miles
15551
8185.5
7662
168
31566.5

Current Location: On Board Celebrity Century En Route to Miami

Today’s Total Expenses: $102.34 (cruise cost includes transportation, accommodation, food and entertainment)

Miles Traveled Today:
We will record the miles for the Atlantic Crossing on November 8th when we arrive in Miami

Feeling the Effects of TomasTransAtlantic Certificate

When we returned to our stateroom after dinner this evening, along with the program for tomorrow’s activities, we also received a Certificate of TransAtlantic Crossing for each of us to commemorate our crossing.

It was totally unexpected and a nice touch.

Lobster and Baked Alaska

Our transportation, accommodation, food and entertainment cost so far

Nov 05 ~ Day #179
Budget to date
Spent today
Total to date
Daily average
Total
$17900
$102.34
$16057.24
$89.71
Miles by Road
Miles by Sea
Miles by Air
Miles by Train
Total Miles
15551
8185.5
7662
168
31566.5

Current Location: On Board Celebrity Century En Route to Miami

Today’s Total Expenses: $102.34 (cruise cost includes transportation, accommodation, food and entertainment)

Miles Traveled Today:
We will record the miles for the Atlantic Crossing on November 8th when we arrive in Miami

Hurricane Tomas

Apparently Tomas again reached hurricane strength at about 9:00am this morning. Again, even though we are not directly threatened by the hurricane it could possibly make things a little uncomfortable.

Formal Night Moved

Because of the possibility of rougher seas due to Tomas, the formal night, which was scheduled for tomorrow, has been rescheduled for tonight. If we’re going to have heavy seas tomorrow we don’t want to be all dressed up, with most women in high heels, while the ship is swaying.

Lobster and Baked Alaska

Geoff was really looking forward to this evening as this is the night that lobster is on the menu. Not being a lobster fan, myself, I just looked forward to another delicious dinner.

Dessert for tonight, however, was the cruise essential – Baked Alaska. There was much fanfare and parading of the Baked Alaska, flaming, while the lights were dimmed.