North Atlantic Ocean

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  • Day118


    August 7, North Atlantic Ocean

    Danke an meine Mama und mein Papa mit denen ich diese wunderbare Reise machen konnte.
    Auch wenn wir ab und zu Streit hatten (was echt selten war) war das die schönste Zeit die ich mit euch je hatte.
    Und ein Danke an euch ihr habt mich die ganzen 4 Monate mit euren netten Kommentare unterstützt.

  • Day1

    Eugen aus Kiew

    July 21, North Atlantic Ocean

    Glück im ausgebuchten Flieger nach Lima, ich sitze am Fenster, der mittlere Platz ist leer. Herrlich 💓
    Am Gang sitzt Evgenij aus Kiew. Er ist 86 Jahre und fit wie ein Turnschuh.
    Prophezeit mir 3 Kinder. Spricht 5 Sprachen, die er sich selber beigebracht hat. Meist spricht er alle durcheinander ^^
    Was macht er in Lima?
    Seit seine Frau gestorben ist, wohnt er abwechselnd bei seiner Tochter in Lima und seinem Sohn in der Ukraine. Abhängig vom Wetter wechselt er immer hin und her.
    Diesmal kommt er aber zum Leid seiner Tochter schon nach einem Monat zurück, der Russland Konflikt ist ihm zu viel. “Alle haben Waffen, bezahlt mit Dollars“ sagt er. Auch wenn seine Tochter meckert, er kommt wieder nach Lima.
    Durch Tschernobyl sind all seine Freunde früh gegangen, normal wird man 50 bis 60 Jahre alt, erklärt er. Er will in seinem Leben nicht mehr in die Ukraine zurück.
    Er fragt mich, was Evgenij auf deutsch heißt. Ich vermute “Eugen“ und denke, wie doof das klingt.
    Am Ende des Fluges noch ein Selfi, da freue ich mich schon. Als er mir dann noch seine Email-Adresse gibt, damit ich ihm das Bild auch schicken kann, bin ich sprachlos 😂
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  • Day135

    Threading the Needle

    May 1, 2015, North Atlantic Ocean

    As we have mentioned numerous times, we have had an extremely smooth passage around the world. I feel I can safely say that now that we are heading north through the Caribbean and toward home. We had 4 days of rough seas out of the 134 days we have been sailing and we have only had 2 1/2 days of rain while we were in port.
    There have been a number of cyclones or storms that have occurred just before or after our visits to certain ports. A cyclone developed within 12 hours after we left Tahiti and there was a tremendous storm the day before we sailed into Hong Kong. The seas were quite rough in and out of Sydney, but nothing compared to the 40’ seas that the Carnival cruise ship endured last week waiting outside Sydney for the harbor to reopen after huge seas and the 30” of rain in one day wrecked havoc for all harbor activities.
    A volcano erupted just after we left Guatemala and another just before we arrived in Tonga - the latter eruption created a whole new island!
    There was a hostage situation in Sydney shortly before we got there. The terrible kidnappings and shootings of the students in Kenya happened a couple of days after we left and the social unrest that has led to violence and killings in Durban, South Africa occurred only a few days after we left as well.
    This trip has impressed on us that the world is a continually evolving place in both natural and social arenas. Now that we have visited so many new countries and spoken to people that live there about their lives and daily challenges, it gives a new perspective on the world as a whole. It is interesting to speculate about what has been successful and unsuccessful, the ways that various countries have chosen to handle issues and what the outcome has been. We find the world news fascinating now that we have walked some of the streets where these current events are unfolding.
    In addition to traveling on the ship, we have been on motorboats, a zodiac, a flatboat and a kayak. We’ve taken trains, subways, an air train, a double-decker bus, countless big busses, small buses, mini busses and vans. We’ve been in hired cars that looked like they couldn’t limp around the block much less get us to our destination, taxis that required 10 minutes of price haggling before getting in, tuk-tuks and bicycles. We swam, snorkeled, floated, waded, run and my Vivofit tells me I have walked 675 miles since leaving home on December 19th.
    Will I remember how to cook? Will I remember how to drive - and on which side of the road? 85% of the places we visited drive on the left side of the road. And I shudder to think of how much wine and Proseco I have consumed. We’ve changed time zones 29 times so I’m not really sure what time it is.
    We’ve met many wonderful people on this trip and even though we’ve been on vacation, we feel a bit exhausted and have much more to process. Among mixed emotions of our trip ending, we’ll get off the ship with big smiles on our faces and maybe a tiny tear in our eyes.
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  • Day127

    Devil's Island, French Guiana

    April 23, 2015, North Atlantic Ocean

    We anchored off of Devil’s Island and were happy to hear that we could tender in even though the seas were fairly rough.
    Devil’s Island is an infamous French penal colony that was well-known for the horrific conditions in which prisoners were kept, in many cases for quite minor infractions.
    The story (movie and book) Papillon tells a very graphic story of a prisoner who spent time on Devil’s Island and eventually escaped. 72,000 prisoners were imprisoned here over the years and almost all died here, their bodies being cast into the sea.
    We visited on an overcast and windy day - the island had a very ominous feel to it. It is very green and jungle-like with agutis (small animals that look like a cross between a large rat and a squirrel, but stand on long skinny legs) and monkeys everywhere. The prison was actually in operation until the 1950’s before word got out about how bad the conditions were and it was eventually abandoned.
    Devil’s Island is an archipelago of 3 small islands surrounded by very rough, shark-infested waters. This is what made escape from the island virtually impossible.
    The first photo is Jeff as "Papillon".
    The second photo is an agate.
    The third photo is a local monkey.
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  • Day134

    At sea

    April 30, 2015, North Atlantic Ocean

    Apartheid was a system of segregation and discrimination used by South African Afrikaners of Dutch decent until the early 1990s when it was abolished. The South African government carefully divided the population into black, colored and white designations, even using guides for hair curliness or skin shading to make these assignments. The blacks had the lowest rank with no voting rights. Coloreds were those of Asian, Indian or mixed descent and were one step above blacks in socio-political ranking. Even though blacks were by far the majority of the population, they were restricted to living in less than 20% of the total land area of South Africa, an ironic situation for these original inhabitants.

    As the country developed, blacks in rural areas migrated to cities where there were jobs. Large portions of the cities, termed districts, gradually began to be integrated with their own music, artistic cultures and economies. Integration was antithesis to the concept of apartheid so bulldozers were brought in to level these districts during the 70s and 80s, forcing the residents into designated areas outside the cities called townships.

    The townships were hastily constructed dense collections of buildings with inadequate water or sewage infrastructure. The government built some block houses in the townships but shanties filled the spaces between the government houses to accommodate the many people forced to live there. The location of the townships outside the cities led to blacks spending high percentages of their income on transportation to city jobs and aggravated the poverty and income disparity.

    The apartheid policy had even more sinister societal goals. Certain areas of the townships had designated housing for single male workers from rural areas. Their wives were allowed to visit only one night per month and a significant charge was levied for this one night stay by the government. However, girlfriends were allowed unrestricted access to the male residences and there was no charge for their visits. The goal of this scheme was to actively break down the family and social structures of the rural blacks.

    The resulting escalating internal social unrest as well as economic pressure from the rest of the world lead SA President F.W. de Klerk to negotiate a peaceful transition to democracy with Nelson Mandela and others in the early 1990s. Mandela had been in harsh prison conditions for 27 years and we had the opportunity to visit Robben Island where he was held for 18 of those years. Our tour was led by a former inmate who described the cruelty they experienced. The political prisoners were treated particularly aggressively because, unlike common criminals, they were a real threat to the government so the leadership wanted to “break” them. It was therefore remarkable that Mandela promoted a future of national harmony, inclusion and forgiveness without revenge. For example, we were surprised to learn that some of the former prison guards also work for the Robben Island tourist site and they are now friends with the former inmates.

    The national Truth and Reconciliation Commissions brought previous apartheid practices into the open for the country to address. Many townships and racial disparities remain, as do several of the razed districts, but the population appears to be surprisingly integrated. Even with setbacks in the process, we were impressed with how the people we talked with faced down the horrible past and were actively working toward a more integrated and accepting future.
    The first photo is District 6 in Cape Town.
    The second photo is a Cape Town Township.
    The third photo is East London razor wire.
    The fourth photo is East London Township
    The fifth photo shows the inadequate garbage collection.
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  • Day7

    The Day's Happenings

    August 8, North Atlantic Ocean

    We had a great sail today. We set off around 10, on the motor, but around noon the wind came up (eventually to 13-14kn) We sailed along with the motor for a while (we can keep up our speed (6kn) without using the motor as much— reduces gas consumption) but finally were able to shut the motor off and just sail for a few hours. We were able to make between 4-6kn, and it was great to see the sails full.

    Our big excitement for the day was seeing a shark!! We still don’t know what kind. I’m posting the picture, so let us know what you think it is. Please do not say “a lobster pot,” because it definitely was not!! It could be a whale, but 1) it was sniffing at David and 2) the dorsal fin was not as floppy as a whale’s. It had a light underside and dark topside.
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  • Day1

    De heenreis!

    May 20, 2017, North Atlantic Ocean

    Ik schrijf dit vanuit het vliegtuig. Het is inmiddels 23.21 Nederlandse tijd maar door de zon van buiten en de lampen in het vliegtuig, lijkt het gewoon midden op de dag. In Suriname is het nu bijna half 7.
    De vliegreis is heel relaxed: ik zit in mn eentje op een rij van 4 en krijg telkens superveel eten. Kan niet beter ;)

    Vanochtend heb ik de laatste dingetjes geregeld en de laatste spullen ingepakt. Daarna zijn we naar Schiphol gereden. Daar hebben we nog even een toeristenkaart gekocht, mijn bagage ingecheckt en een drankje gedaan. Eigenlijk ging alles heel makkelijk. Bij de douane deden ze even moeilijk over een schaar (oeps) maar uiteindelijk mocht ik ook die gewoon meenemen.
    Het was al vrij snel tijd om naar de gate te gaan en om te boarden. Ze riepen steeds een aantal rijen op die al mochten boarden zodat er helemaal geen lange rij ontstond. Voor ik het wist zat ik in het vliegtuig en gingen we (na de veiligheidsinstructievideo natuurlijk) al opstijgen!

    Na een uurtje vliegen kwamen de stewards al met het eten. Het is trouwens wel super makkelijk dat iedereen Nederlands spreekt, de stewards ook. Ik had bij het boeken doorgegeven dat ik graag een vegetarische maaltijd wilde, maar dat was niet doorgekomen. Gelukkig konden ze het nog wel regelen. Ik kreeg rijst met spinazie/bonen/linzen en nog wat dingen die ik niet precies weet. Het was heel lekker!

    Tussendoor kregen we ook nog een paar keer drinken en zelfs roomijs! Net kwamen ze langs voor de laatste "snack": een bak noodles of roti en een bakje fruit. Het is maar wat je een snack noemt, haha :)

    SLM heeft geen schermpjes bij de stoelen maar schermen waar iedereen op kan kijken. Ze draaien alleen maar kinderfilms vandaag dus ik heb maar genoten van Alvin & the Chipmunks, Pets en Ice Age.

    Over ongeveer 1,5 uur gaat het vliegtuig landen. Dan moet ik nog iets regelen bij de immigratiedienst geloof ik en dan ga ik op zoek naar mijn transfer naar het appartement! Tegen de tijd dat ik bij het appartement ben is het in Suriname ongeveer 11/12 uur en in Nederland dus 5 uur later. Tijd voor een dutje dus!
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  • Day26

    1. Seetag

    July 22, 2017, North Atlantic Ocean

    ... und ich war noch nicht mal an Deck. Es ist draußen trüb und nebelig und noch 3.000 Kilometer vor uns - yeah!

    Dafür gibt es heute Abend eine Party von den Offizieren der Brücke :D Es wird Karaoke gesungen um die Crew bei Laune zu halten.

    Dann haben wir jeden Tag Zeitumstellung - 1 Stunde vor. Der Sommer kann kommen ;)

  • Day9

    Coastal Kitchen Restaurant

    January 19, North Atlantic Ocean

    Coastal Kitchen is the exclusive suite restaurant on Harmony of the Seas. The food and service was excellent and on par with Silversea, Regent and Crystal. The maitre d’ gave us a view table each night with the same waiter. By the second night he knew our pre dinner drinks, wine and after dinner drinks without us telling him.

  • Day9

    Central Park

    January 19, North Atlantic Ocean

    Central Park is one of the “neighborhoods” on the Harmony. You walk through an open outdoor area filled with 12,000 live plants and trees. There are winding paths and sitting areas going by restaurants and shops. It was a quiet and relaxing environment and hard to believe you were on a ship with 6700 people.

You might also know this place by the following names:

North Atlantic Ocean, Océan Atlantique Nord

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