14 November 2012

October 2012--Our First Cruise. . .Day 2: Toulon, Provence, France

21 October 2012

Our first cruise stop was Toulon, which is in the Provence region of Southern France.  This was the view from our stateroom on Sunday morning:

We didn't pre-book an excursion for this day, but had signed up for the Dreamworks Character Breakfast featuring characters from Shrek and Madagascar.

The menu was filled with all sorts of chocolate drizzled items and then there were the chocolate milkshakes!  Served to us without having to order them and they were, in my opinion, the best thing ever!!  However, Hannah took some convincing. . .but she finally tucked in!  :)

Maggie LOVED them!

Charlotte wasn't interested in milkshakes!

We all enjoyed meeting the characters. . .
. . .except for Charlotte who wasn't interested!

After breakfast, the kids all made their first visit to the kids' clubs--Royal Tots Nursery for Charlotte, and the Adventure Ocean for Hannah and Maggie.  The adults decided to take a ferry ashore to visit the Provencal Market in Toulon.

I was glad to know where they were stored! ;)

Toulon is the capital of France's Var region and is characterized by its mountainous landscape, fortified medieval villages, and its original Greek & Roman influences.  Located on what's considered to be the most beautiful and well-protected natural harbor in Europe, it is a center of French naval dominance and has been a seaside center of trade for centuries.  (info from Royal Caribbean pamphlet)

After many, MANY stalls of fruit and veg (although I did pick up a scarf and we managed to find pastries) we headed to this restaurant for some moules (mussels), bread, cheese, and WINE!

I headed back before Keith and his parents so that I could pick Charlotte up from the nursery. . she was asleep in the rocking chair when I got there.  Keith grabbed the big girls when he got back and they all went swimming.  I managed to get a run in at the ship's fitness center. . where I quickly realized that I do not like treadmill running!!

This evening's dinner theme was formal, so we all got dolled up in our (somewhat) formal clothes and got our picture taken:

Dinner was exactly what you would expect a formal dinner with kids to be. . .messy & a bit chaotic!  The big girls were itching to finish fast and go back to Adventure Ocean.  In fact, they didn't even eat their dessert!  Then Charlotte needed to be changed. . .so although we didn't really get to sit and enjoy much of it together, it was a nice meal in the end!!

The day ended with bedtime for the girls, a little bit of euchre, and another bottle of vin in our room.  Keith was ready for sleep, so I went out and explored the ship a little.  I shopped (because the night time was when the shops were open), and then sat in the piano bar with a dirty martini for a bit.  Before heading back up to the room, I hit the English pub for a pint and Jimmy Buffett covers!  Needless to say, after that I was ready for bed!  Morning came very early the next day!!