Joined August 2017 Message
  • Day8

    Day8 At Sea

    August 19, North Sea ⋅ ⛅ 20 °C

    So our last day today and we’ve spent it at sea, full steam ahead towards Southampton. Mostly cloudy but mild and the occasional outburst of sunshine but warm enough to be in shorts and a t-shirt.

    A nice relaxing breakfast up on the decks before a bit of a wander around the ship ⛴️ . Stumbled across a bar we hadn’t seen before and blew $10 in the casino. Found some cadburys biscuit crunch chocolate bars in the shop which you can’t buy in the UK anymore so picked a couple of those up before having a wander around the promenade deck. Again stumbled across a lovely lounging area where there was just us and a lovely view out to sea. We stopped off there for an hour or so.

    Next we moved on to the infinity pool at the back of the ship, amazing views of the wake and inside looking up towards the back of the ship. It was less than warm if compared to the hot tubs and the worst of it was getting out but a sacrifice worth making.

    We moved on to Alfredo’s for lunch, bit of a queue but as it’s last day everyone will be trying to do their favourite things. We’re just going to try and squeeze as much in as possible. Once again, great food with ocean view and a beer or two each. The sun was out for the afternoon so next stop hot tubs on the open decks. Chatting to a lovely lady from Canada who is stopping in London next week so we were helping her out with what was where.

    Unfortunately, we only managed an hour or so due to a serious incident, Someone was very poorly and needed to be airlifted to hospital. A helicopter was sent from Holland to airlift them off to hospital. The back of the ship had to be completely evacuated so we were asked to leave the tub which we did gladly. We headed back to our room to get changed and we’re just in time as that was evacuated too. So we moved on to the bar !! The sun was out so we headed for the central decks which were still open. We were able to see the helicopter arrive and hover over the ship and perform the airlift. Take our hats off to these guys,the crew of the ship and the coastguard were fantastic, let’s just hope the person is ok.

    Next we moved on to the salty dog out on the open deck for a sneaky bite to eat and a drink before I heard the inevitable that I thought we might avoid, yes the word “Shops” crept in to conversation. The blow was softened somewhat by the fact that there was the gelato place in the atrium which was en route. So an ice cream each then a look around the shops ! Sadly nothing to buy in the shops (shame) but we did get a Beef and Guinness pie and a drink from the international cafe on the way out.

    Packing had to come next unfortunately, but had to be done, we have opted for an early departure so we get to keep our cases rather than have them collected early in the evening. We decided we’d sneak a final hour or two in the tub tonight before a bit of supper. Sat in there and watched the sun go down until around 10pm before getting out for the last time on this cruise.

    It’s been a blast, we’ve loved every minute of it, let’s hope we don’t have to leave it so long next time.
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    Traveler

    Lovely final day Lee. Enjoyed reading all about your adventures. Take care buddy. Until the next one 👍

    8/20/22Reply
    Traveler

    Thanks mate, now I’ve realised you’ve done a couple I’ll keep an eye out. November is our next one - big birthday so I’m off !! Hope you’re well Colin

    8/20/22Reply
     
  • Day7

    Day 7 Oslo

    August 18 in Norway ⋅ ☁️ 17 °C

    Alarm set for 6.00am this morning as we know we sail down a channel with nice views either side. Sharon did advise me it was 6am and I replied I’d see it on the way out !! The weather has broken slightly today, grey cloudy skies with little or no blue to them but the temperature still ok at around 20 degrees in the day.

    We had a slight wobble this morning and couldn’t remember exactly how to get up the mountain to the 1952 Olympic bobsleigh track that has been turned in to a walk route. Oslo seemed slightly different to how we remembered it but after a trip to the tourist info, and a bit of trial and error we worked our way to the metro and we’re off. Line 1 to the end of the line at Frognersteren which is 469m above sea level.

    Once off the train, it’s a 2 mile walk down to the dry ski slope, down what was once the 1952 Olympic bobsleigh track. It has been gravelled over and is a fabulous walk with the most beautiful ski lodge En route which has a cafe - today they were doing home made custard danishes, it would be terribly rude not to have one. The cake selection (and other food) is amazing and the views are spectacular. A bit if a shame it was so grey but we can’t have it all.

    It was downhill from there - and in more ways than one. For some reason we can’t explain we had a bit of a wobble when walking down to the ski slope, it’s not well signposted and we had a couple of junctions where we were unsure which way to head. We asked a lovely lady who was out walking her dog if she could direct us to the ski jump, she kindly told us and said she was going that way and we could follow her. We did, just that, it felt like we were miles away !! We finally go to a church which by this time we knew all about which is where she announced “here you are”. I can only assume ski slope and church must sound very similar. We remained calm(ish) and carried on. We then got a torrential downpour whilst out in the middle of nowhere. But, fear not, we are intrepid and we found our way down to the ski slope where we needed to be, albeit time a little tight, underpants possibly in need of a change !! We jumped on the metro back to town and was chatting to a man who had just ski’d up the mountain on his road ski’s and was just going home. It looks very hard work, nice bloke though. With just an hour to spare before the ships departure we hot footed it back and headed to our cabin to dry ourselves off.

    Early departure out of Oslo and apparently we need full speed ahead from today until Saturday to reach Southampton in time. Sailaway from our balcony again Sharon being nosey looking at anything and everything through the binoculars. It’s a spectacular sail away as there is land either side for a little over 2 hours.

    A bit if time in the tub tonight on the open deck but other than that a quiet night for us. Tomorrow we are at sea all day so no comms, hence todays blog tonight just before we get cut off !!
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  • Day6

    Day 6 Skagen

    August 17 in Denmark ⋅ ⛅ 20 °C

    It’s fair to say we’ve not been up too early this holiday and today was no exception. The light juddering as the ship docks has been the subconscious alarm clock. Still, that’s what me needed.

    Once again the weather hasn’t disappointed us, nice blue skies in the main and in to the 20s. Breakfast up on the deck then off in to this once again pretty little town which is on the northern most tip of Denmark 🇩🇰. It’s just a short walk in to the town which is full of quaint little shops, and coffee shops. One of the highlights of Skagen is the northerly most tip, on the beach where the 2 seas ( Kattegat & Skagerrak) meet. It’s in a place called Grenen which is approximately 3 miles away. The public bus runs there from just outside the town - well it used to last time we were here. It appears that busses only run to the 6th August !!

    However, undeterred we set off on foot. 7 miles round trip but a glorious day. We passed an old 17th century lighthouse which you could go to the top. There were lovely paintings hung on the walls and the artist was very chatty and told us all about it. I went to the top up some almost vertical stairs at times, Sharon elected to wave to me from the bottom !! We then passed a caravan site, looked lovely but it’s a bit of a hike to come 😂😂, another lighthouse (I’d already done one so no thanks) before reaching the beach we needed. We decided to have a snack and a drink to keep us going. From the beach entrance a tractor takes you through the dunes and out to the point where the two seas meet. It’s strange, they meet in a V shape and the waves come in towards each other and meet. A great sight to see.

    Unfortunately, the three and a half mile walk back followed, but it was still a beautiful day. Being typically Denmark we were in the way of the cyclists and their bells were starting to grate on me a tad by the time we got back to the town. A quick wander round, in and out of a few shops, purchase of the customary Christmas bauble and then back on the ship for a very late lunch.

    We decided to do the sail away a bit differently tonight, and we did it from our balcony. Sharon settled with a cup of tea, a pina colada and a Danish bar of chocolate. I settled for tea and an M&S biscuit ! It was brilliant, we had some binoculars and we’re able to see where we had been as we sailed out to Oslo. There were some kids on the balcony below us and they were jelly fish spotting with their granny so we joined in. A good hour or so and we were out and on our way towards our last stop of the holiday, Oslo.

    A quick hour or so in the hot tub on the open deck and watching Skagen becoming more distant, before a quick change and out for tea. We’ve got a bit of a wobble on tonight as the wind has picked up so there quite a bit of movement in the ship, but we like that. Had a couple of beers, one in the Atrium and one in the princess live lounge. Did the Abba quiz, 17/20, gutted !! One I’ve never heard of and 2 schoolboy errors but we’d have lost anyway as the one I’ve never heard before was got by 2 teams !!

    So, lateish night (we’ll for us anyway), thanks for following, until tomorrow - goodnight.
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    Traveler

    Sounds like a lovely day Lee. Weather is an added bonus!

    8/18/22Reply
     
  • Day5

    Day 5 Copenhagen

    August 16 in Denmark ⋅ ⛅ 23 °C

    As we arrived in Copenhagen this morning it was grey and drizzly but that was through the window around 7am. By the time we were fully secured and we’d dragged ourselves out of bed, the cloud was clearing and the sun was breaking through nicely. The temperature was still good too.

    Copenhagen is a place we’ve been to many times and I was lucky enough to work here for a while a number of years ago so we know it well. There are 2 places to dock, one within walking distance of the city, the other, a 20 minute bus ride away. Unfortunately we docked at the latter one, which is fine as it’s just a bus ride in to town, so after breakfast we jumped on the transfer shuttle and went in. Still as lovely as ever and we were dropped off at one of the squares right in the middle of town. We walked up to Nyhavn which id still busy and very colourful before deciding to go up past the opera house and down to the little mermaid stopping for a snack and s drink along the way. There’s been s seaplane circling around all day and we found it’s possible to book a flight around, something we’ve not seen before, maybe on the list for next time.

    It’s been very warm and we did get rain, for all of about 3 minutes and even then it was just huge spots. We ambled back to the square to catch the coach back picking out the places I used to stay and we had been to when I worked here. We were back on board for 4.30 and went up to the open deck for a snack and a drink, before heading of for a cheeky half an hour siesta !!

    A late departure tonight so we decided we’d sail away whilst in the hot tub, the medallion app isn’t working on Sharon’s phone to get drinks delivered, but there is a workaround which seems to work pretty well once I’ve got it going. Sharon just gets out of the hot tub and walks across to the bar, then returns with said drinks. Works equally as well 😂😂.

    We were watching the sun go down in the tub just nicely whilst there was a movie on on movies under stars but we were under threat from a couple of swarms of midgets, probably because we were still docked, we switched tubs 3 times and eventually gave up. We’d managed a couple of hours so was fine. Food not required this evening due to a massive intake over the last few days, so we just had cake instead.

    Lovely sail away tonight, spent out on the open decks and still very warm. Next stop Skagen tomorrow.
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    Traveler

    Great post Lee. I think you meant midges unless you've got an excess of dwarf's onboard 🤣

    8/17/22Reply
    Traveler

    😀😀, least someone’s reading them Colin, yes you’re correct.

    8/17/22Reply
     
  • Day4

    Day 4 Kristiansand Norway

    August 15 in Norway ⋅ ⛅ 23 °C

    First dock of the week here in Kristiansand Norway. This is the first time in this port for us so we were looking forward to having a look around. A bit of a cloudy start but lovely and warm. We were up and about early and we were out on deck as we glided in, it was like a millpond. The port is a working port so not massively picturesque but the surroundings were very pleasant to see.

    Nice breakfast followed by cake to get us going. We wandered down to the atrium for a nice cup of tea from the international cafe before disembarking to explore.

    What a lovely place, once off the ship it was a short walk through the port and then out in to a pretty harbour area with open parks and a lovely walk around the coast before turning in to the town. The town was equally as pretty and was very busy. The centrepiece of the town was the church with its green spire. All this was within easy walking distance from the ship. A total walk of about 6 miles. Very typical of Denmark, Norway and Sweden being immaculately kept and very pretty.

    We returned to the ship for a spot of lunch by which time the sun was in full swing any the cloud had cleared. We then decided to give the Gellatto cafe a try in the Atrium, we’ll most definitely be returning there, almost likely daily as the ice cream was amazing.

    We went to the back of the ship for the sail away this afternoon as the sun was shining down and the views were lovely before having an hour or so on the sun bed out on the open decks. We were contemplating the hot tubs but they were quite busy and we’d actually been organised and booked dinner for 7pm so we wouldn’t have had long anyway.

    For the first time this cruise we decided we would eat in the main dining room, medallion app to the rescue, press the buttons, decide when, press more buttons and turn up. Result is lovely good in a lovely environment. At this rate we’ll need a new wardrobe when we return as all we’ve done is eat ! Nothing much planned after dinner as we’re both tired so an early night tonight ready for Copenhagen tomorrow.
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  • Day3

    Day 3 At Sea

    August 14, North Sea ⋅ ⛅ 21 °C

    We didn’t open our peepers until 8.45 this morning but in our defence the clocks did move forward sn hour last night !!

    As breakfast finishes in the main dining rooms at 9.00am, we headed up to the Horizon buffet as they serve until 10.30 !! As usual it didn’t disappoint, in fact better than usual as English bacon was in plentiful supply and I usually have to ask for it. I did however have a bit of a wobble, it appeared my usual Lemon Danish pastries had been replaced with “Vegan Danish”. Fortunately the guy behind the counter seemed to realise my horror and asked “Would you like a real one?” After that glimmer of hope I replied that I would and he led us to the proper cakes !! Faith restored !! Got talking to Arnie and his wife at breakfast from Palm Springs, they’d just come back from Singapore where they had a week riding Harley’s, they were in their 80s !!!!

    We had a wander around the ship, not quite as easy to get around as we are used to but that’s no problem, it’s also impossible to get right to the front of the ship as far as we can tell and we think that’s down to the ships design. We stopped off in the Atrium to just soak up the atmosphere which was lovely, then the line dancing started !! It was quite funny watching the 4 blokes trying it !!

    As it’s been such a beautiful day we headed to the open decks for a bit of sunbathing whilst watching the ocean pass by, the medallion app on the phone doing its stuff again and swiftly getting as a Stella and a Pina Colada delivered without even visiting the bar !! Lunch at the salty dog again and a bit more R&R on the open decks this afternoon before hitting the hot tubs early evening.

    Formal night tonight, we were going to attend but we’re lateish getting out of the hot tub so decided to give it a miss and eat upstairs. Great food as always and quiet due the formal night downstairs.
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  • Day2

    Day 2 Southampton

    August 13 in England ⋅ ☀️ 31 °C

    Another beautiful morning in the Uk this morning, so nice to have some heat. A leisurely start to the day with a little walk around Marlborough and breakfast at the pub before setting off for Southampton. A different route which the sat nav took care of through some lovely little country villages. We did very well for traffic and we were at the port for around 11. A little wait in the meet & greet car park and then we were on. We feared boarding may be painful but totally the opposite, straight through and on by 12. Wow, the ship is far more impressive than any we’ve sailed on and we’ve done a few. It is beautiful in every way although a little more difficult to navigate our way around but we’ll find our nice places tomorrow during the sea day.

    Upon embarkation we made our way to the salty dog burger bar and had a bit of food. I started to dabble with the new medallion class app and managed to order us a few drinks to be delivered directly to us, no matter where we are on the ship, they know, they find you and they serve you your food and or drink. I think I’m going to like this app. Next we meandered down to our room, balcony stateroom for us this time which is nice. A more modern and lighter feel to it and will be fine for us.

    Upon wandering round the ship we noticed there are far more hot tubs than on previous ships, and we are partial to a couple of hours in the tub, so that’s what we did. Sharon attempted to use the app to order a pina colada but unfortunately it’s not letting her in - apparently she hasn’t paid, I didn’t laugh (too much) but I’m sure she wouldn’t have got on the shop if she hadn’t paid. We were out on the open decks for the sail away party and made use of the sun loungers for a couple of hours before returning to our cabin .

    The evening has seen use dine at Alfredo’s in the Atrium but I needed a bit of a tip up so off up to the buffet for a little bit if extra fuel. It’s 10pm now, we’re back in the cabin and just having a drink on the balcony before calling it a night.
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  • Day1

    Day 1 Home to Marlborough

    August 12 in England ⋅ ☀️ 32 °C

    So today we embark on our first week away since before the covid pandemic. We opted for a leisurely drive down on the Friday rather than a mega early start tomorrow. Todays weather has been exceptional for the UK with temperatures reaching 32 degrees and beautiful blue skies. We started the day off by taking Sharon’s Mum & Dad out for breakfast at the library in Worksop before heading off. Our first stop, Bourton-on-the-water in the Cotswolds for a spot of lunch. Forgetting that it’s school holidays, the traffic was all good until we got to the Cotswolds. The last 4 miles took us about 40 minutes and the place was packed. It’s a beautiful place, and it was extremely busy. We parked in the cricket club and walked down by the river to a little tea shop for some lunch, before wandering around the place. Was lovely seeing all the kids in the shallow river that runs through the heart of the place. On the walk back we bought an ice cream which was locally made by hand. Chatting to the guy who does it he actually milked the cow yesterday. He was also from Gainsborough originally, small world. Next we progressed down to Marlborough, just outside Swindon to our hotel for the evening, The Castle and Ball. It sits right in the middle of town so is ideal for a little wander and Marlborough is a pretty little town. I’ve stayed here many a time when I was working for CDK but Sharon has never been. Had a lovely evening, met up with Mick awho I do some work with and his wife Louise and we sat out and had a couple of beers and a lovely chat and catchup. 11pm now, just off to bed before departure day tomorrow.Read more

  • Day8

    Day 8, Doncaster via Limassol

    December 18, 2019 in Cyprus ⋅ ☀️ 14 °C

    So today’s the day it comes to an end and we go home. We were late to bed last night for us getting in just before 1am. Neither of us slept to well but we knew we had to be up and out by 9am. The first thing I did was to fire up the central heating at home. In some of the rooms in our house it was 5 degrees, as cold as it was in the conservatory, a hard realisation of what it was to be like at home. The weather here in a Cyprus today was lovely. After getting up we went off for breakfast in the buffet. Very busy this morning and everyone carrying hand luggage, coats etc. But as usual the food was good.

    We then moved on to the loungers at the back of the ship. We didn’t have to be off until 12.15 which was a bit of a rarity for us. We’re normally up and off on Princess. Whilst it’s great we didn’t have to rush around, sat waiting to go with all our gear was a bit of a drag. But hey, we were sat out in the sun. We went for our last drink about 11 and made a couple of cheeky sandwiches before finally disembarking about 12. On the way down I noticed the butter man was open just mentioned to Sharon I could have had a quick burger and hey presto burger and chips as a final final final snack.

    We then transferred to Limassol by coach before boarding our flight back to Doncaster. All fairly painless to be fair, the only bit of excitement was a few rows in front of us, the oxygen masks dropped down mid flight and wouldn’t go back again. Never seen that before. The weather on arrival in to Donny was lousy.

    So we’re home now, off to London on Saturday until the New Year with the exception of Christmas Day.

    A very good, well needed and faultless holiday.
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  • Day7

    Day 7, Haifa, Israel (Overnight)

    December 17, 2019 in Israel ⋅ ☀️ 18 °C

    So we were reasonably early to bed last night as yesterday was a very long and tiring day. We were up and about around 8.30am and had a leisurely start to the day. Important job of the day was to wish Ryan a Happy Birthday 👍.

    The weather today was tremendous, actually nice and warm with lots of sunshine. We had nothing planned today apart from a wander around Haifa. We left the ship around 10.30 after a hearty breakfast and found our way to the German Quarter as advised by the tour guide from yesterday. It was very nice, with a little shopping centre and some nice bars and restaurants. We stopped off at a nice local bar for a light refreshment, Sharon had an Arabic Coffee, weird contraption it was served in.

    Then we had a walk around the town. We started off at The Baha’i Gardens which was the resting place of the prophet Herald. Lovely place especially as it was sunny and warm. We then made our way through the streets to Wadi Nis Nas to a cultural food market before making our way back to the ship around 2.30pm.

    The town is very hilly as it is on the side of the Carmel Mountain. What they call a mountain we’d call a hill and what they call a lake we’d call a puddle but this was quite a big hill.

    Once back on board we went for lunch before taking to the back of the ship for a while to make the most of the sun and a little bit if heat, most welcomed. As it’s our penultimate day we ( or should I say Sharon) has to pack so we popped back to the room and packed up.

    We made the most if the last night, a couple of pints in the lounge, did the quiz, dinner in the restaurant, another beer, off to the show, more drink and finally the Christmas disco with the cruise staff.

    So, next step Limassol in the morning.
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