Monday, August 15, 2011

Trip Report Part 1 of ?

My recent deal of a trip was in the form of a 12 night Scandinavian and Russia cruise on Royal Caribbean International. I stayed in London afterwards before coming home.

If you go on their site and look up the same cruise for next year for one person (this yr's sailings are all sold out), the going rate is $3722 for an inside room. I paid $1271 cruise only found on a 3 day sale, a fantastic offer considering that I usually pay a significant single supplement.

Add to it the flight for around $1000 and I was there. D is convinced I made it through because of a computer pricing error. I didn't care. They honoured my online booking.

For those who have never cruised before, I must say the cruise industry is quite something. They make it extremely easy for you to spend money. Your room card is also a charge card while you are onboard. They push the "once in a lifetime" idea to encourage everyone to splurge out on everything from photos to special restaurants to excursions.

I wanted to go because they were going to get me to many places I've always wanted to see covering a lot of ground with minimal travel hassle. Remember your food is included and you are staying in a nice environment. Life is easy on a cruise ship.

It started in Harwich England and went to Copenhagen, Stockholm, Helsinki, St Petersburg (2 day stay), Tallin and Gothenburg. You get full days at each port which allowed me to get a good feel for the places and make decisions as to whether I'd want to return and stay longer.

There were a smattering of at sea days which I appreciated as we lost another 3 hrs (time change) by the 4th day of the trip. Remember I'm already coming from Canada.

Sailing through the North Sea both ways was a bit rough even for such a large ship with stability boosters. There were barf bags offered on all 12 decks. On the passage home, the captain changed course to hopefully make the experience more pleasant for everyone.

My dinner knife slid a foot and fell off the table! I have half decent sea legs and I still managed to walk run into a plant. Winds creating the swells hit a high of 62 mph. We were not allowed on the outside decks for both days.

It was neat to see the sea action from the vantage point of the 6 main elevators as that part of the ship was made of glass for all 12 decks. The engineering of these ships are amazing.


  1. I love to hear about your travels and dream about doing it one day myself.