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Baltic Cruise Questions

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Planning a cruise to the Baltic next year and have a few questions for those who have sailed this itinerary. The route is Amsterdam, Skagen, Denmark, Tallinn, St. Petersburg, Finland, Stockholm, Copenhagen, Amsterdam.

 

Is there a bad time to go? The date I am planning is second week in June, but wondering why the price is a bit cheaper than other dates.

 

Does it matter which side of the ship? Currently booked port, but right now there are plenty of cabins.

 

If you had a balcony for this itinerary, did you use it a lot? We book ocean view or balcony depending on itinerary, price, etc. Thinking balcony since it is a longer cruise, but it is port intensive and expect we will be off the ship for long days.

 

Relative to ports, what would be your "not to miss" sights? And on the other hand, are there any sights that you wondered what was all the fuss was about?

 

This is at the top of my bucket list and I am interested in any suggestions from those who have been there!

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Planning a cruise to the Baltic next year and have a few questions for those who have sailed this itinerary. The route is Amsterdam, Skagen, Denmark, Tallinn, St. Petersburg, Finland, Stockholm, Copenhagen, Amsterdam.

 

Is there a bad time to go? The date I am planning is second week in June, but wondering why the price is a bit cheaper than other dates.

 

Does it matter which side of the ship? Currently booked port, but right now there are plenty of cabins.

 

If you had a balcony for this itinerary, did you use it a lot? We book ocean view or balcony depending on itinerary, price, etc. Thinking balcony since it is a longer cruise, but it is port intensive and expect we will be off the ship for long days.

 

Relative to ports, what would be your "not to miss" sights? And on the other hand, are there any sights that you wondered what was all the fuss was about?

 

This is at the top of my bucket list and I am interested in any suggestions from those who have been there!

 

June tends to run a bit cheaper in Europe as schools tend to break up later for the summer. (End June/July)

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Have done Baltics but different itinerary on the Serenade out of Stockholm. That being said, my key suggestion for you regarding St. Petersburg is do a private excursion. Don't believe what the ship says about them only letting their excursion passengers off first or try to scare you about visas. The private tour companies take care of the visas no problems. For recommendations see the Northern European ports of call board (not just for St. Petersburg).

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We took our Baltic cruise in July and it was cool. I imagine June will be cooler.

 

Did not miss having a balcony. It would have been too cold for me to sit out on. I feel the cold and I did miss not being able to enjoy sitting outside on deck very often. When we were in port it was warm. Just not when we were sailing.

 

We were port side ocean view, second deck, on the Vision of the Seas and were very happy with our cabin. We enjoyed our window to look out of, especially as we woke up to approaching Sweden. It was beautiful.

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Planning a cruise to the Baltic next year and have a few questions for those who have sailed this itinerary. The route is Amsterdam, Skagen, Denmark, Tallinn, St. Petersburg, Finland, Stockholm, Copenhagen, Amsterdam.

 

Is there a bad time to go? The date I am planning is second week in June, but wondering why the price is a bit cheaper than other dates.

 

Does it matter which side of the ship? Currently booked port, but right now there are plenty of cabins.

 

If you had a balcony for this itinerary, did you use it a lot? We book ocean view or balcony depending on itinerary, price, etc. Thinking balcony since it is a longer cruise, but it is port intensive and expect we will be off the ship for long days.

 

Relative to ports, what would be your "not to miss" sights? And on the other hand, are there any sights that you wondered what was all the fuss was about?

 

This is at the top of my bucket list and I am interested in any suggestions from those who have been there!

 

Did this exact cruise July 9-21. We had a stern balcony and I did use it a lot. We tended to dock starboard side to the pier if that matters to you, but that could change easily. The sail in and sail out of Stockholm is not to be missed! Spectacular!

Some things we did.

Skagen, rent bicycles and ride to Grenen and go out on the Sanderman. It's a beautiful and easy ride on bike trails. If you're ambitious, ride to the Sand Church.

Tallinn, for us, was a rest day. Took the shuttle to the old town, walked around and went to a nice restaurant for lunch. Go up the hill to the church and also find the overlook for the view.

St. Petersburg. Use a third party tour company. We used TJ Travel and I most highly recommend it. We were 10 friends so it was a private tour. We added the inside of Peterhof...DO NOT MISS Peterhof inside AND the gardens and fountains. We also added Yusupov's Palace and St. Isaacs Cathedral. TJ's was most accomodating to our changes. So I suggest you research St. Petersburg, compare the options on the tour groups, and decide what you really want to see most. It is 2 very intense days. We opted not to do a night event so we could get enough rest. But when we added Yusopov's palace and St. Isaac's as well as inside Peterhof, our first day got us back to the ship at 7:30 pm. But it's spectacular!

Helsinki. We did an overview. It was ok. But if you want to go on your own, make sure you visit the Rock Church. Other than that, research it and see what else you might want to see and then you can decide on a tour.

Stockholm. DO NOT MISS THE VASA MUSEUM. We got off the ship first thing. Grabbed cabs to the Vasa and were in line 30 minutes before opening. We were the FIRST people there! The tour groups arrived about an hour after it opened. So for me, go on your own. Go as early as you can get off the ship. Cab over.

After Vasa, we took the ferry directly to Gamla Stan (old town) and wandered on our own. The ferry picks up just a short walk from the Vasa by the amusement park and is about 4.50 Euros. Then we walked back to the ship. Long but nice walk. Or cab back.

Copenhagen. Again, taxi to Nyhavn and we did Hey Captain canal cruise. It was really fun. 12 people max in an open boat. Great captain and they have wine and beer included. Then we grabbed lunch and went to the Round Tower, and my wife and I walked to the Hans Christian Andersen monument, then to the Rosenborg Castle. Definitely go to the Castle and see the grounds. Then we took a cab back to the ship.

Plan a few days in Amsterdam and be sure to go to Zaanse Schans. Lot's to see around Amsterdam. If you are going to see the Anne Frank House, be sure to buy tickets on line so you get a guaranteed entry time. You can buy them exactly 2 months prior to your visit. Well worth it.

Anyway, hope this helps. And I would DEFINITELY get a balcony. But bring a warm jacket when you sit on it.

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We did the Vision in June this year and it was cool weather, mostly. My review is on this board and it's very detailed. Had an Oceanview and did not miss the balcony except coming into Stockhom, which was beautiful. Also, several evenings were very windy/chilly and were not conducive to being outside.

 

On Starboard side and did not think it made any difference.

 

St. Petersburg was amazing, Helsinki not so much. Did 2 days prior and 1 day after in Amsterdam which is a great city.

 

Sue

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Planning a cruise to the Baltic next year and have a few questions for those who have sailed this itinerary. The route is Amsterdam, Skagen, Denmark, Tallinn, St. Petersburg, Finland, Stockholm, Copenhagen, Amsterdam.

 

Is there a bad time to go? The date I am planning is second week in June, but wondering why the price is a bit cheaper than other dates.

 

Does it matter which side of the ship? Currently booked port, but right now there are plenty of cabins.

 

If you had a balcony for this itinerary, did you use it a lot? We book ocean view or balcony depending on itinerary, price, etc. Thinking balcony since it is a longer cruise, but it is port intensive and expect we will be off the ship for long days.

 

Relative to ports, what would be your "not to miss" sights? And on the other hand, are there any sights that you wondered what was all the fuss was about?

 

This is at the top of my bucket list and I am interested in any suggestions from those who have been there!

 

_________________________

 

I went on this cruise July 2016 for 13 nights. The countries were experiencing an unusual heat and humidity wave so perhaps 2018 will be a bit cooler in June.

 

I had a balcony and used it every day - I'll never go back to anything less than a balcony. We would sit out and watch the sunrise before heading down to breakfast. Evenings we gathered with friends. Either side of the ship doesn't matter since you don't know which side will be docking.

 

Book your St Petersburg tours with TJ Travel - they were always on time, friendly, spoke English well and answered all of our questions. And you never had to wait to get into the crowded museums. Jam-packed agenda all 3 days in port and so worth it. Also booked their tour in Tallin. You get a discount if you book more than 1 tour.

 

Took a bus from the pier in Helsinki to the town center and back. Majority of the sites (Church of the Rock) are within a few miles walking distance from town center. The city looks like a metropolitan city in the US. Check out the farmers market and try the reindeer stew - tender and delicious!

 

Purchase the Stockholm Pass prior to leaving for your cruise. It gets you into the awesome Vasa Museum (go early), Nobel Museum and lots of other places without having to wait in line.

 

I was so tired by the last city Copenhagen. We just rode the hop-on-hop-off bus from the pier and stopped to see the Mermaid. And walked the famous Canal Street and had lunch.

 

Have fun - that was a trip of a lifetime.

 

Rochelle

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We had SPB Tours for our 2-day Deluxe St. Petersburg tour. The sites were amazing. We shared experiences with our Roll Call mates and had similar impressions on other operators like Alla and TJ tours. A lot cheaper than the ship's with similar sites to visit.

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I cruised from Amsterdam to Northern Europe in late June/July and had an oceanview room. We usually get balcony rooms, but glad we didn't. Weather was a little too cool to sit outside. Mostly Mid 50s. Enjoy your cruise. Great itinerary.

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Did this cruise July 9-21 (same as Papa flamingo above). Would agree with everything he said. We used Alla tours(they take of of visas) and were very pleased. Long days ,but well worth it. Also, check your roll call for someone lining up a tour. That is where we found our St. Pete tour(s). We got a great discount and Alla also discount any other tours you book with them in the other ports on this cruise. Weather was cool in July, actually,a couple of days pretty chilly, IMO. Dress in layers...a windbreaker and/or a fleece jacket would be good to have. It is a wonderful cruise! Enjoy!:D

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We're booked on this cruise on Brilliance for next July. Thanks for all the great info papaflamingo! I've been going back and forth over oceanview or balcony- we book oceanview cabins routinely unless a balcony is a great deal.

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This is amazing feedback. Thank you everyone for taking the time to reply. And PapaFlamingo, thank you so much for all your suggestions. And Sue, I will definitely be reading your review. I am so excited now. I have been looking at this itinerary for 5 or 6 years and you all have solidified my decision not to wait any longer. Thank you again! (I love CruiseCritic.)

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We did the Baltic on Celebrity two years ago, end of May into June. Weather was fine. It is a great trip regardless of who you sail with or the exact itinerary. In St Petersburg just be prepared for the long lines one day one getting off the ship. The Russians are not friendly about immigration and everyone MUST go face to face with an immigration officer. We did a private tour with TJ Travel for two days. They made all of our visa arrangements, got all of our tickets for the palaces etc and took care of our visas. All we needed to enter the country was a passport and our tickets from TJ. Doing a small group makes it much easier to move around the city and the sites. We never waited more than a few minutes for admission any where. In Tallin, there is a great walking tour that you can find online. Very detailed, very interesting. We had planned to use it but DW messed up her knee just before we left so we had to use cabs to get up and down the hill and then we got to pick up the walking tour. Stockholm, yes, don't miss the VASA but also allow some time for Gamala Stan, the old city. Where ever you go there is a lot of walking so wear good shoes.

 

Balcony? We always get one, we always sit out some each day. It is a great place to enjoy a room service breakfast when you have an early starting tour.

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We did private tours with spb tours I made all the plans and with them and was able to fill all the spots with people on cruise critic and spb tours then gave me half price for getting the tours together. They do a great job with their tours and it is so much cheaper then the cruise ship tours. Would use them over and over again.

 

Sent from my SM-G930T using Forums mobile app

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I live in the south part of Sweden and June can be cold and some years really warm..

 

I would NOT take a balcony cabin in June, unless it's dirt cheap. Maybe if you where sailing in late July or August, but not in June. You have to count in the chill factor of the wind and the Baltic sea.

 

I haven't done a real cruise in the Baltic but I have taken the cruise ferries to Finland several times, one time to Tallinn and one time to Riga.

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Planning a cruise to the Baltic next year and have a few questions for those who have sailed this itinerary. The route is Amsterdam, Skagen, Denmark, Tallinn, St. Petersburg, Finland, Stockholm, Copenhagen, Amsterdam.

 

Is there a bad time to go? The date I am planning is second week in June, but wondering why the price is a bit cheaper than other dates.

 

Does it matter which side of the ship? Currently booked port, but right now there are plenty of cabins.

 

If you had a balcony for this itinerary, did you use it a lot? We book ocean view or balcony depending on itinerary, price, etc. Thinking balcony since it is a longer cruise, but it is port intensive and expect we will be off the ship for long days.

 

Relative to ports, what would be your "not to miss" sights? And on the other hand, are there any sights that you wondered what was all the fuss was about?

 

This is at the top of my bucket list and I am interested in any suggestions from those who have been there!

 

As others have mentioned, be sure to book a tour with a company - - SPB (fabulous) or one of the others for St. Petersburg . They will take care of the visa for you. If you do not book something (with any company or the ship) you will need to purchase independently as you cannot leave the ship area without one.

 

We did have a balcony and did use it. We were on the port side of the ship.

 

Have a fabulous cruise!

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We just did a Baltic cruise on NCL July 9 to 18th and we always cruise a balcony or above ( and took our adult children and booked them a balcony as well..) It was windy and chilly esp when at sea .none of us sat out on the balcony. very few people out on the decks too...we booked our tours thru TJ's and were very satisfied ...My advise forgo the balcony and get a oceanview cabin

 

 

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I did a Baltic cruise in June and the weather was glorious. Shorts weather in Saint Petersburg, where I did my tour through Alla Tours, well recommended.

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Just off this cruise and we loved it! Pack a raincoat. It was chilly some days but the balcony was used everyday - to dry our bathing suits, to view the sail in/out, to enjoy coffee before the kids woke up. We always get a balcony. Just makes the room feel larger and I like to watch the ocean.

 

I also recommend booking a private tour in SPB. We passed large shore excursion groups and we were thrilled that it was just our family of four and our guide. We saved a lot of time and were able to move at our own pace. Have fun on your trip!

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I shall be watching this thread for further info as I'm booked on the 12 night cruise on Navigator in June 2018

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I'm also going to follow this thread closely. I'm already taking notes. My DW and I are celebrating our 25th in early Aug of 2019 and had planned a Med cruise. But decided to make it a Baltic cruise instead because of probable intense heat and crowds on a Med cruise at that time of year. So gathering up information and waiting for Itineraries for Late July/early August 2019 to start showing up. Anybody know approximately when they should start opening up? We are considering forgoing a Balcony and try and inside or an OV for the first time. Would like to make it a 12 or 14 day cruise.

 

Thanks all for info already given and for any upcoming info (y)

 

dp

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we did this cruise leaving July 27th. we were on Princess, the odd # side of the ship. This was our first cruise and we used the balcony a lot! Had very nice weather and got the sun, so most mornings I could sit outside with coffee.

 

The views were wonderful and especially leaving places like Warnemunde were so much fun with the locals yelling and waving goodbye.

 

We were so glad we had the balcony but we were only in the shade once I think.

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we did this cruise leaving July 27th.

Late July and June are NOT the same when it comes to the Baltic sea.

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Here's one more vote for a balcony. We sailed during the last 2 weeks of May this year and had some rain and cool weather, but lots of sunny days too. I was able to eat my room service breakfast on the balcony most mornings (usually wearing a jacket). Also had pre-dinner drinks on the balcony some evenings. I appreciated being able to step out and take pictures for the scenic sail-ins and sailaways from many ports, especially Stockholm.

 

More info on sightseeing etc. is in my review, if you are interested. Link is in my signature below.

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