I did not grow up traveling. We had four children in our family and my parents were divorced. The budget was not there for us to do things like that. This career path I created has provided me with blessings I never even imagined possible and I walk in gratitude for each one of them.
As a travel journalist, I have been blessed by the opportunity to visit many places. Often times during interviews I am asked what is on my “bucket list” that I have not yet visited. Every time I answer the same thing – “my dream trip is to see Greece”. So when Celebrity Cruises approached me about teaming up for the maiden voyage of Celebrity Apex through the Greek islands, there was zero hesitation and I answered with a resounding YES! I literally cried while walking up the jetway to board my flight because I could hardly believe this experience was taking place.
The sailing originated out of Athens and the Greek Government required completing a document before traveling to be able to enter the country. With proof of being fully vaccinated, there was no need for a Covid test and the process was quite easy to complete. While in Athens, masks were required inside and outdoors including at attractions such as The Parthenon. Upon arriving at the Cruise Terminal to sail, the Covid protocol to board included a temperature check, presentation of the vaccine card, completing a health screening and a free rapid antigen test administered on site, Celebrity is sailing with limited capacity and masks were required in the public spaces while on the ship. All of this attention to detail worked because at the end of the sailing, each crew member and guest were tested at no cost, and every single person on board came back with a negative result.
We were greeted with so much enthusiasm from the crew as they were delighted to be welcoming guests back on board. There were many tears and lots of emotion from everyone. Pulling out of the Port Of Athens was such an incredible feeling as it signified so much about a return to travel. I was truly grateful to be there and filled with so much joy.
The WOW factor of this beautiful ship took my breath away. Celebrity Apex is like nothing I have ever seen before. She is SPECTACULAR in every way – the design, the cabins, the restaurants, the rooftop garden, the fitness center….. Everywhere I turned was even more impressive than where I had just looked. Stay tuned for more about the ports of call and on board experience.