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kiwigirl

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Hi -

 

I have some questions about excursions on the RT Classic Voyage. We will be on the Trollfjord at the beginning of August this year. I was wondering if anyone had input on the following excursions:

 

Day 2 - Geiranger w/Trollstigen

Day 3 - Kayaking on River (in Trondheim)

Day 4 - Experience Bodo and Saltstraumen

Day 5 - Mountain Hike in Tromso

Day 5 - The Arctic Capital (Tromso)

Day 6 - Fishing Village (North Cape)

Day 6 - SAMI Cultural Walk (North Cape)

Day 7 - The Russian Border (Kirkenes)

Day 8 - Breakfast at the North Cape (south bound)

Day 8 - Midnight Concert in Arctic Cathedral (south bound)

Day 9 - Lofoten Islands

Day 10 - Bronnoyund Village Walk (Arctic Circle)

Day 11 - The Atlantic Road (Trondheim)

 

We are a group of 5 going on this trip. This is a list of all possible excursions that we are thinking of. We're not all doing all of these excursions.

 

I'm wondering if anyone has any experience with any of these excursions and what your thoughts are.

 

Thanks so much!!

 

 

 

 

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I went in May, so not all of your list were available, but I did the following from your list:

 

Day 4 - Experience Bodo and Saltstraumen

A driving tour around the town of Bodo (all in the bus, no stops) and then about a 20 minute drive out to Saltstraumen. A short walk along a pathway to be able to actually view the malestrom (hopefully you will be there at a time when it is most active), then a longer drive back to Bodo along a different route through the countryside. I enjoyed it. Not as thrilling as those who took the boat ride, but much cheaper.

 

Day 5 - The Arctic Capital (Tromso)

A drive around the city, with stops at the Polaris Aquarium (which I could have skipped, the Polar Exploration museum is much more interesting and very close to the ship), and then another stop at the Cathedral, followed by more driving through the city and then a short drive out into the countryside. If you are a good walker, you can easily walk across the bridge to see the Cathedral on your own, and also probably could skip this if you are also going to the concert on the way back south.

 

Day 8 - Breakfast at the North Cape (south bound)

The drive in the bus is nearly a hour each way, through tundra and along side the fjord...interesting. Watch for reindeer in the hills along the way. We were the only people at the North Cape visitors center at that hour...the breakfast was very similar to that on the ship, and served in the center's cafeteria, and then you have the rest of the time there on your own to walk around the grounds and see the museum. Large gift shop to buy souvenirs. The drive back to the next port included a stop at a Sami gift shop and to see a traditional Sami hut and reindeer. I enjoyed this trip.

 

In Trondheim going north I took the tour that included the Cathedral and the Music Museum. Probably the best tour on the trip for me.

 

I also did the Sea Eagle trip on the way south in the Trollfjord, and enjoyed this quite a bit; got some great photos of the fjord, the eagles, and of the ship as well.

Edited by Splinter

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This is great info!! Thank you!! I remembered what you said about the aquarium and thought this was it but wasn't sure. My in-laws were the ones interested in that excursion so the details are very helpful.

 

Also the info about the Breakfast is good. My husband was thinking of taking the SAMI culture excursion and it seems like there might be some overlap.

 

 

I went in May, so not all of your list were available, but I did the following from your list:

 

Day 4 - Experience Bodo and Saltstraumen

A driving tour around the town of Bodo (all in the bus, no stops) and then about a 20 minute drive out to Saltstraumen. A short walk along a pathway to be able to actually view the malestrom (hopefully you will be there at a time when it is most active), then a longer drive back to Bodo along a different route through the countryside. I enjoyed it. Not as thrilling as those who took the boat ride, but much cheaper.

 

Day 5 - The Arctic Capital (Tromso)

A drive around the city, with stops at the Polaris Aquarium (which I could have skipped, the Polar Exploration museum is much more interesting and very close to the ship), and then another stop at the Cathedral, followed by more driving through the city and then a short drive out into the countryside. If you are a good walker, you can easily walk across the bridge to see the Cathedral on your own, and also probably could skip this if you are also going to the concert on the way back south.

 

Day 8 - Breakfast at the North Cape (south bound)

The drive in the bus is nearly a hour each way, through tundra and along side the fjord...interesting. Watch for reindeer in the hills along the way. We were the only people at the North Cape visitors center at that hour...the breakfast was very similar to that on the ship, and served in the center's cafeteria, and then you have the rest of the time there on your own to walk around the grounds and see the museum. Large gift shop to buy souvenirs. The drive back to the next port included a stop at a Sami gift shop and to see a traditional Sami hut and reindeer. I enjoyed this trip.

 

In Trondheim going north I took the tour that included the Cathedral and the Music Museum. Probably the best tour on the trip for me.

 

I also did the Sea Eagle trip on the way south in the Trollfjord, and enjoyed this quite a bit; got some great photos of the fjord, the eagles, and of the ship as well.

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I plan to do some of the excursions in June - I'll report by then

Edited by hallasm

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I plan to do some of the excursions in June - I'll report by then

 

Thanks!! Are you doing the 11 day? Enjoy your cruise!

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Thanks!! Are you doing the 11 day? Enjoy your cruise!

I'm only doing the northern part for the Midnight Sun in June.

I have previously done the southern fjords, however a regular cruise ship.

 

_ZzhGY8x_2E

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What time of year did you go? I believe my MIL & SIL are the ones who are interested in this excursion. They were both involved in Sweet Adeline choirs.

 

Nice to see another San Diego cruiser. :)

 

I enjoyed the midnight concert at the Arctic Cathedral - beautiful music in an interesting building.

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What time of year did you go? I believe my MIL & SIL are the ones who are interested in this excursion. They were both involved in Sweet Adeline choirs.

 

Nice to see another San Diego cruiser. :)

We were there in the winter, Dec/Jan. There was a variety of musical performances - voice and instrumental. It's been a few years, and what I remember mainly were the solos, but I think there might have been a choir, too. I think they change the actual program regularly, but the music was beautiful, and I loved the design of the building.

 

There aren't too many of us on this forum, especially, from the San Diego area, at least not that I can tell.

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Thanks! I just passed this tidbit along to the others. Do you recall about how long of a program it is?

 

I'm not sure if I could handle Norway in the winter. I'm cold now...here. :D

 

There is one other person, Splinter, who is also in the area.

 

 

We were there in the winter, Dec/Jan. There was a variety of musical performances - voice and instrumental. It's been a few years, and what I remember mainly were the solos, but I think there might have been a choir, too. I think they change the actual program regularly, but the music was beautiful, and I loved the design of the building.

 

There aren't too many of us on this forum, especially, from the San Diego area, at least not that I can tell.

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The program was not long - an hour at most, maybe more like 45 minutes.

 

I've been to Norway in the winter and summer. No matter when you go, it's a beautiful country. Have a wonderful time.

 

 

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Interested to know what you think about the differences between taking the ocean cruise and the Hurtigruten for this area. Preference?

 

 

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Interested to know what you think about the differences between taking the ocean cruise and the Hurtigruten for this area. Preference?

 

 

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If you mean standard, mass market cruise lines like Princess or Holland America for an ocean cruise, those and Hurtigruten are completely different experiences. I suggest you read the member reviews for Hurtigruten to see what passengers have liked and not liked about the experience.

 

Generally speaking, people who expect a standard cruise line cruise, are disappointed with Hurtigruten. Hurtigruten is a combination ferry and cruise. There are port to port people who are on board for transportation, and those who are there for a vacation.

 

Some of the main differences with Hurtigruten are the meals and planned entertainment. Food is included in the fare only for full or half board passengers, and only at meal time. If you want snacks or something to eat at other times, you can purchase it at the snack bar. And prices for just about everything in Norway are more expensive than any where else.

 

The entertainment is the scenery. In the evenings, there generally is a pianist in the one bar. There usually are a few port "seminars", but the highlight is the scenery. We just couldn't stop looking out the windows or being on deck. The scenery in magnificent.

 

The ships vary widely from a museum type small ship (Lofoten) built in the 1960s with less than 100 passengers, to more modern, larger ships (Midnatsol, Trollfjord) built in the early 2000s with around 500-600 passengers. There are people on this board who love the Lofoten, and others who prefer the newer ships. Read carefully what's available on the ship/date you choose so you are not disappointed. We wanted a hot tub and gym, so picked the Midnatsol.

 

I'm a frequent cruiser, but mainly from the west coast of the USA. I'm one of the unfortunate ones who has only been on one Hurtigruten ship, and only one time (winter). I can't wait for the opportunity to go on one of their ships again! That's why I continue reading posts on this board...

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If you take a traditional cruise ship all the way to the North Cape (few actually include this in their "fjord" cruises) it is very likely that you will be far off-shore between the major ports they visit, perhaps only Tromso and Trondheim in the far north, for example. They will have longer port stays, but on Hurtigruten you will have many more ports, and travel on more protected waters, between islands, and fjords, between these ports. Of course, as above, if you have to have bingo, production shows, art actions, etc. on a cruise, like dressing up for dinner, or need to eat 24/7, and are not happy with the glorious scenery alone to entertain you, you will probably be happier on a traditional cruise ship.

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If you take a traditional cruise ship all the way to the North Cape (few actually include this in their "fjord" cruises) it is very likely that you will be far off-shore between the major ports they visit, perhaps only Tromso and Trondheim in the far north, for example. They will have longer port stays, but on Hurtigruten you will have many more ports, and travel on more protected waters, between islands, and fjords, between these ports. Of course, as above, if you have to have bingo, production shows, art actions, etc. on a cruise, like dressing up for dinner, or need to eat 24/7, and are not happy with the glorious scenery alone to entertain you, you will probably be happier on a traditional cruise ship.

 

 

Don't need bingo, production shows, art auctions, or dressing for dinner. Guess I was more interested in the food options, and options in ports for checking out the area. Also wondered about the crew. Are they locals. What kind of service is offered? I've read there are 3 meals, two buffets and sit down dinners. Does this sound right?

 

 

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Yes. Breakfast and lunch are buffet, and they are terrific. There are dozens of things to choose from, lots of fish, delicious desserts at lunch. No breakfast pastries, though! Dinner is a set meal, with assigned seating. When we went two years ago, in December, we sat with another couple of Americans and an Australian couple. All were nice folks. The menu for dinner is posted at lunch time, and my understanding is that if you don't care for it, you can request an alternative meal. I never did so, although I didn't care for reindeer! Or lamb! The portions at dinner are not large, but certainly adequate. We had to buy bottled water if we wanted water with dinner. Coffee was served in the lounge after dinner.

 

Yes, Hurtigruten is not like regular cruise lines. The scenery is definitely the entertainment. We had free internet, though. I'm going on another Hurtigruten cruise in May, Bergen to Iceland...can't wait!

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Since you've only done one, you may not have the answer. What are the names of the newer ships? Are the drinks pricey?

 

 

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Currently the most recently built ships on the fleet are MS Midnatsol and MS Trollfjord (who are sister ships) and MS Finnmarken. There is also MS Spitsbergen, who joined the fleet last year, and is not a recently built ship (she was bought from a Portuguese company I think) but has been entirely refited for the line. Also, several ships built in the 1990 received a complete interior design overhaul in 2016 (MS Kong Harald, MS Polarlys, MS Nordkapp and MS Nordnorge).

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The fleet does also include M/S Fram from 2007 - as Spitsbergen not a car ferry and sailing other routes than coast of Norway.

From July 2018 also MS Roald Asmussen will join the fleet

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MS Spitsbergen is currently doing the Norwegian route, replacing MS Midnatsol while she is in Antarctica so she's offered as one of the ship on the line (and I think she does carry cars).

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MS Spitsbergen is currently doing the Norwegian route, replacing MS Midnatsol while she is in Antarctica so she's offered as one of the ship on the line (and I think she does carry cars).

 

Originally it was a car ferry with a capacity of 45 cars, but I believe it has been rebuild last year for cruise tours and do not carry cars anymore.

 

 

http://Http://mogenshallas.com cruise reviews

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You are right, no cars on MS Spitsbergen (but still, at the moment she is doing the Coastal Express journey in Norway, until MS Midnatsol comes back from Antarctica sometimes in March I believe, and then she will be doing exploration trips).

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You are right, no cars on MS Spitsbergen (but still, at the moment she is doing the Coastal Express journey in Norway, until MS Midnatsol comes back from Antarctica sometimes in March I believe, and then she will be doing exploration trips).

 

We booked the MS Spitzbergen for September 16, 2017 for the 12 day Coast trip because we were told she would be skipping the night ports to stay longer in the day time ports. I called Hurtigruten last week and was told she won't be doing this - will be following the same route as the other ships. Oh well....

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We booked the MS Spitzbergen for September 16, 2017 for the 12 day Coast trip because we were told she would be skipping the night ports to stay longer in the day time ports. I called Hurtigruten last week and was told she won't be doing this - will be following the same route as the other ships. Oh well....

I think that was true only during last spring, when in essence MS Spitsbergen was a "bonus" ship, travelling on the same day as another ship doing the traditional route, so she indeed has a special schedule. Then starting in the fall 2016 she replaced MS Midnatsol (bound for Antarctica), reverting back to the normal schedule. I suppose this is going to be the same situation next fall.

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Hi,

As posted in another thread, we are booked for the Hurtigruten Southbound (Kirkenes-Bergen) on the MS Polarlys in September. I am also interested in anyones opinion on the Excursions. We are leaning towards 'The Breakfast at North Cape & The Sea Eagle Safari'. However being quite pricey it would be good to know if they offer value for money. Are they such fantastic experiences? Is the Cathedral Concert in Tromso a must also?

Many thanks.

 

Cheers

T.

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