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Hezu

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Everything posted by Hezu

  1. Flåm port cruise ship arrivals list for 2024-2025 indeed does not seem to include the information whether ships dock or anchor, but I presume that the list could at least help to determine if there is more than one cruise in port and I presume that tendering is only needed when there is more than one ship in port on same day.
  2. Although Bergen is fairly well known for quite wet climate, so rain (and even heavy rain) there is not that unusual thing. The average annual precipitation is 2495 mm.
  3. According to City of Helsinki announcement of this renovation access to the Sibelius Monument should reopen in May this year and whole park renovation project is expected to be finished in autumn.
  4. I don't know about UK, but at least in Finland there are some prescription (and over-the-counter) medicine that is sold in bottles rather than in blister packs. But at least repacking medicines into those yellow/orange bottles is not something that is done in this part of the world, pretty much all medicines come in packages from the manufacturer, the main exception being nowadays quite rare practice where the pharmacy produces the medicine in their premises.
  5. If you happen to be in a port (or near coastline) that day, I would suggest trying to use a phone and cellular data to access Internet. But might be still wise to check what sort of international roaming charges your phone service plan carries.
  6. Also worth a mention, that majority of time reindeer herders allow most of their flocks to roam around quite freely and only few times in a year the herds are rounded up to sort out which animal belongs to whom and which ones should be slaughtered etc.
  7. I guess it is worth a mention that most narrow-body airliners in Europe (used on nearly all intra-Europe routes) have seats configured so that the entire plane has only single* type of seats and if there is business class available, front rows have been designated for business "cabin" and the rest for economy and the only difference in seating is that the middle seats in business class are usually not used (assuming there is three seats on each side of aisle). Of course, in business class you should get better free meal and beverage service even if the hard product is similar to the economy class. *) ok, in practice, bulkhead and emergency exit row seats may be slightly different from the rest of seats.
  8. Although a camera and telephoto lens can sometimes work in similar fashion as binoculars (and capture pictures!), I think binoculars do still offer some advantages. And there is times, when you may prefer to just look rather than snapping photos, think for example some wildlife in distance: sure you could take photos, but perhaps nothing exciting if the animal is just a small dot in vast landscape (or seascape). But it might be still enjoyable to observe the animal from distant with binoculars, identify it and see if it is coming closer. Also since modern cameras tend to use EVFs with live view that shows an image similar what will be captured, that might be somewhat misleading (eg. show dark silhoutes), whereas binoculars (or good old optical viewfinders on [D]SLRs) show image more akin to what your naked eyes see. Also with binoculars you can look with both eyes while camera viewfinders cater only for one eye. And if the camera and lens combo is an ILC and the lens is a big heavy telephoto, it is easier to wield binoculars (assuming we are not talking about some big, heavy high-magnification binoculars).
  9. And of course, if one wants more telephoto reach than what mobile phone cameras offer, there is also option to get one of the superzoom compacts instead of ILC + (big) telephoto lens. There haven't been much development in this segment in recent years, but for example Sony RX10 IV is still quite good all-around camera for someone who doesn't want to haul around heavier camera kit.
  10. I have no personal experience with car rental companies in Helsinki, but there is quite a few options (search "car rental Helsinki" on your favourite web search engine and you should learn more). None is exactly next to the cruise port (assuming your ship docks at Hernesaari), but even in central Helsinki there is few alternatives, although worth a note that driving in central Helsinki may be at times bit complicated as there is some one direction streets, streets being shared by trams and cars etc. And summer is the peak season for road/street works, so that can mean that you have to take a detour to get your destination or at least prepare for that the traffic goes at snails' pace. Also some sort of countryside you could find even within the city limits of Helsinki reachable by public transport: Viikki is the closest to the city centre, then in northern parts there is Haltiala and in the east there is Östersundom.
  11. Note that is a Viking Line cruiseferry (I would say M/S Viking Cinderella based on the livery since most ships in Viking Line fleet have livery with more red) rather than Viking cruise ship. Despite the similarity of names, Viking Line and Viking (Cruises) are not related.
  12. Note that OP mentioned Fujifilm X30, not XT30. Since X30 is somewhat older compact camera with a smaller sensor, it probably behaves somewhat differently than XT30, which is a mirrorless ILC. I don't have experience with either Fujifilm model, so I cannot give any advice specific to these cameras, but I think give one universal advice: make a note on battery life based on your usage patterns and if battery tends to run out earlier than you would like, it is a good idea to invest in extra battery since it is very frustrating if there is a good opportunity to use camera and you can't do that if its battery has no power.
  13. It is certainly good idea to have some hands on testing of the binoculars before buying as that way you know that the ergonomics suit you. I would also suggest that you do practice a bit using your new binoculars before the cruise.
  14. Although if you want to do any wildlife photography (and on a safari, you usually want), G7X III's zoom may feel too short as it covers only 24-100 mm equivalent focal lengths, where as Sony RX10 IV sports one with 24-600 mm range.
  15. If you want a reasonably simple solution, then I would suggest Sony RX10 IV, which is compact superzoom with a great zoom range covering wide angle to supertelephoto, fast autofocus and good image quality. Not the cheapest option, but if you would like to similar focal length coverage for interchangeble lens camera that might cost even more and you would have to change lenses occasionally and that may lead in missing shots and also as safari environments tend to be dusty there would be a high risk to get dust also on the camera sensor. ILCs may still have few advantages over RX10 IV (or other compact cameras). Btw, do I assume right that currently you don't have any existing camera equipment (excluding camera phone)?
  16. Are those Ziess binoculars cheap knock-offs of Zeiss brand? 😉 Zeiss certainly makes nice binoculars, especially in the more expensive lineups, although certainly for many people, who do not need binoculars that frequently would probably be quite happy with even the cheapest models. Vortex is also reputable optics manufacturer, so I presume those would be also decent choice, although I have no experience with that brands' products. Granted, I think there is also quite a few other brands that would deserve also recommendation.
  17. Norway would have also few glacier ski centres if you would want more authentic skiing in Norway experience during summer. However, I don't have experience with any and their locations may not be that practical for a cruise.
  18. I think one interesting area in that part of Germany is Schleswig-Holstein Wadden Sea National Park. One unique element there is group of islands called halligen, which are quite flat and close to sea level, although the buildings (many built in the traditional style) are built in man-made mounds to protect these from the potential storm flood tides. Much of the coastline is also quite shallow and there is even routes that could be used to hike from one island to another during the low tide. Early May would be also great time to observe birds' spring migration if you are interested in that.
  19. With suitable geomagnetic storm conditions it is sure possible to see Northern Lights surprisingly southern latitudes, although further south you go less common this gets. But predicting this in well in advance is perhaps even harder than forecasting regular weather, so you know only day or two before if there might be a possibility that there could be auroras. And even with suitable space weather it is always possible that A) auroras occur during the daylight hours and thus are not visible, although midwinter in the polar regions have the advantage here as there is minimal amount of daylight, B) regular weather is such that there is a thick cloud cover and it is impossible to see any sky. And for most people there is also C) auroras light the sky in the middle of night when you are sleeping.
  20. I have no personal experience with any smart phone aurora photography, but after a quick Internet search I learned that most likely you want to use some sort of tripod with a phone holder as you generally want to use exposure times measured in seconds and that isn't optimal for hand held shots as usually you don't want to combine creative ICM techniques with aurora photography.
  21. Although of course it is worth noting that it will take some time also from the city centre to Hernesaari, where most cruise ships dock. And sadly for time being from the nearest place where you can get on public transport (terminus of tram line 6), it is still about one kilometer to the cruise ship. HSL website should help you to figure out the public transport options around Helsinki region, the route planner there does allow you to search best routes between two points and it has options to show also walking and cycling routes (although I guess most tourist probably won't need that latter option).
  22. Actually, the tram network in Helsinki has seen some route overhaul in the recent years and these days route 3 does not go anywhere near Temppeliaukio, although there are other tram routes that stop on the nearby tram stops (Sammonkatu and Hanken). Although it is even possible to hop in a tram that bears route number 3 and get there, albeit before this happens the tram route has changed into number 2 as these routes are interlinked, but on Olympiaterminaali the route number changes between 2 and 3 despite that it still the same tram operating both routes. See route maps on HSL website for the latest information.
  23. My current favourite travel tripod is Heipi 3-in-1 Travel Tripod. I do own also the Peak Design Travel Tripod and it has some good qualities, but Heipi is much sturdier despite that it is only marginally heavier and longer than PD tripod. I do like a lot that the Heipi's central column is actually a mini tripod that one can use eg. for low angle work. And it is also useful that it is easy to change the supplied ballhead to some other tripod head if you prefer something else. In my opinion that Heipi ballhead works reasonably well, although it is not the best I have used: the quick release locking mechanism is bit clumsy and locking lever and knob are perhaps tad small and thus operating those in cold conditions with warm gloves is not that easy. Heipi does include ice spikes for tripod legs by default, for PD you have to buy these separately (and I think those PD spikes are not even that sharp).
  24. Sigma does make some decent lenses indeed, but I have to mention that Sigma 14 mm F1.8 is not the most optimal choice for E mount cameras, especially if talking about APS-C camera models, as it is still a design for DSLRs and thus is quite big and heavy. The newer Sigma 14 mm F1.4 has been designed for mirrorless cameras and it probably should work pretty well also in aurora photography since it is aimed for astrophotography, although it is also big and heavy, although it should be more balanced than the older Sigma 14 mm F1.8 as it includes tripod attachment collar. The newer Sigma 14 mm might be still bit too specialized if one does not have that big interest in night photography.
  25. First, 25 mm on APS-C crop is not that wide. Comparable focal length giving similar field of view on full frame is 37.5 mm. My current favourite lens for aurora photography is Sony FE 1.8/14 GM. Sure, that is not something I would call a cheap lens, but on the other hand, it offers a lot bang for the buck. And it is still cheaper than Sony's (super) wide angle f/2.8 GM zooms. And it is also much lighter in weight than those zooms, so that is a definate advantage while traveling. Also it is already few years old, so there should be some available on second hand market, which could offer some savings compared to prices of a new lens. I have earlier also used other lens, some of which haven't been that fast, but that obviously has meant using longer shutter speeds (although then you sure may lose some details as the auroras may move quite actively) or/and higher ISO (might get more noise then). Also, you could try using wide angle lenses for other photo subjects than just auroras to justify the cost of your purchase.
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