Tag Archives: At sea

Returning to Norway

Board Emerald Princess – Wednesday 17 July

A travelling day and a transfer to Emerald Princess at the Frihavnen pier just north of the Langelinie promenade. Easy boarding by 1315.  We saw the Maitre d’ re our dinner table (and were surprised later to find he was able to organise our table with a window view astern; a large table was not possible due to a full passenger load.  We sailed for Norway (again) at 1800, this time for Oslo – which is roughly the same latitude as Bergen.  We saw – in the distance – some castles in (Royal) Northern Denmark, and the Swedish coastline on the starboard side for several hours.

The Captain warned us of rough seas overnight.  We take on the pilot at 0600 before entering the Oslofjodem; around 0800 we are to transit the Droback narrows and then on through the picturesque fjords to Oslo by 1000.

Tonight we visited Crooners briefly to hear the pianist/singer, before adjourning to the Explorers lounge for singing/dancing to Accent.

Some observations:

  • We all know about New Zealand .. Denmark has ‘old Zealand’ or simply Zealand – in the North Zealand above Copenhagen, etc
  • Several Royal palaces are in North Zealand
  • Denmark around Copenhagen is incredibly flat.  As we headed north, some mountains emerged.
  • The weather in Copenhagen mostly took time to warm up; an early sunrise was soon followed by a period of heat mid-morning or overcast conditions; from noon on, the odds of a brisk breeze were high.  Today started off overcast, then sunny for most of the afternoon.
  • Our taxi driver was a Denmark born Pakistani who spoke English well as well as his two other languages.  He said there was quite a community of Pakistani people, but nowhere near the numbers in the UK.  His father emigrated at age 25, 45 years ago.

We thoroughly enjoyed our time in Copenhagen.

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The end of this chapter

At Sea – Friday 12 July

Our last day at Sea this cruise!  We had an easy day, took in the cooking demonstration and the technical presentation, missed the back stage tour and avoided the life at sea presentation.  Champagne and nibbles in Grapevine where we found out that Mallory had been promoted to Cruise staff for her next contract.  Dinner with the Baked Alaska parade followed by the Cruise Show, a re-visit to the ventriloquist (same show!) and bed.

London to Copenhagen – Saturday 13 July

We arrived in Southampton along with five other cruise ships, including the Queen Mary 2 which we sailed past as we docked.

An orderly transfer to Heathrow, an ordeal with security, and a flight to Copenhagen that was one hour late.  Arrived in Copenhagen in the middle of a baggage strike and waited two hours for our bags.

Just as well our wait-listed reservation at Restaurant Geranium did not come off!

A cold day at sea

At Sea – Thursday 4 July

Heading to Longyearbyen (Spitsbergen), Norway - 9C outside with a 28 knot wind WSW
Heading to Longyearbyen (Spitsbergen), Norway – 9C outside with a 28 knot wind WSW

A millpond was how the ocean appeared this morning as we head to our northernmost call tomorrow at Spitsbergen in the Svalbard Archipelago.  There we will be 812 miles from the North Pole.

It is 9oC outside with a 28 Knot wind from the WSW.  6oC is the forecast for tomorrow in Longyearbyen.  Almost nobody is on the decks, and inside the ship is busy everywhere!

Midnight Sun

IMG_0692.JPGYesterday the sun rose at 0346 and set at 1140 … that is the last sunset for eight days.  Today’s weather was fine but the afternoon was really lovely – strong sun, lots of water, not a care in the world.  Stavanger was at the lower end of Norway (similar longitude to Anchorage, Alaska), and tomorrow’s call is near the upper end.  We were mostly 14nm off the West Coast and this afternoon passed some oil/gas drilling rigs on the horizon.

DSC07052.JPGOur cabin has a double balcony in the sense that it is twice as deep as others and provides a lot of room and sense of space.  Caribe 247.

IMG_0684.JPGBreakfast this morning in the dining room was slow and we were confronted with a long queue.  The day was relaxing … a culinary demonstration, coffee and a bite to eat, a wine tasting (we had a couple from Sheffield, Mary & Ian at our table), followed by a flight of French reds in Vines Wine Bar (a new innovation for the Piazza run by Mallory, an Australian lass from the Gold Coast/Melbourne), dinner, Showtime with singer Ricky Zalez, and (having left early from the Princess Theatre) then Crooners with Tommy McPhee.