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Just back -- Bergen rt on MS Spitsbergen

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We just got off the MS Spitsbergen round trip Bergen to Bergen. This was our first Hurtigruten. We have done many big ship cruises but love the smaller ship. We sailed with 160 passengers.

 

We found all the dinners excellent, better than those we have had lately on the big ships.

 

Our weather was good once we left Bergen where it rained all day.

 

We mostly went into the ports and walked around but did do some excursions.

 

I think our favorite days were sitting on the top deck in the front of the ship, watching the scenery. I think that unlike a big ship, it's not so much the ports but the scenery that's the reason to sail the fjords. And what is nice about the Spitsbergen is that the whole top deck is pretty open.

 

Would be glad to answer any questions you might have.

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Good to know!

We will be on the ms Spitsbergen for a Spitsbergen cruise in june 2018. This is an expedition cruise with zodiacs. What cabin category did you have?

 

Rgds

Frans

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We are booked on Spitsbergen next February and I have just read elsewhere that the Spitsbergen is not a good ship if you are taller than 6'2... from your experience, do you think my 6'4 DH will constantly be banging his head into things like sprinkler heads and signs?

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We were in inside Cabin 429 which had a double bed. We loved the location--same deck as you get off and on the ship, plus just one deck up to the dining room. The ship is small so you're never very far from anything.

 

As far as the height (next poster), I hadn't heard that. But I don't recall the ceilings in the corridors being overly high so maybe it could be a problem. As we are all 6' and under, it wasn't a problem.

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We are considering the 6 day Southbound for next Summer but on a different ship. Can you say a bit about what you did in each Southbound port? If that’s too much to ask, I understand. Also, do you know how much internet was? Thanks

Edited by beachdreaming
A

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We paid 400 krona (approx. $50 US) for a 12 day package which we felt was very reasonable compared to big cruise ships, plus the internet was reliable and fast, so well worth it. Not sure what the price was for the 6 day cruise.

 

Southbound:

 

Day 1: Kirkenes wasn't our favorite day. It was rainy and in September, a couple of the museums we might have gone to were closed. Didn't want to pay to go to the Russian border as I've read it wasn't all that exciting.

Vardo: 1 hour stop, enough time to go to the fortress

 

Day 2: Hammerfest: Did the Northern Most Town tour (1 hour). It was okay. Came back and went to the Polar Museum by the pier which was interesting.

Tromso: Did the Midnight Concert which was nice.

 

Day 3: Spent most of the morning up top watching the scenery. Got of briefly in Sortland for a quick walk. Got off in Stokmarkness to walk through the town. Didn't visit the Hurtigruten Museum which I hear was interesting.

Svolvaer: Went to Magic Ice which was fun. Cost was $36 US for 2. They dress you in heavy parkas and gloves and give you a drink. Kind of hard to explain but you might goggle it.

 

Day 4: Again, spent most of the morning up top watching the scenery. Got off in the afternoon ports and walked around.

 

Day 5: Got off in Trondheim and walked around. Trondheim was one of our favorite ports. We walked across the Flower Bridge and by the old warehouse district and then back through the heart of town.

 

Day 6: Again, spent most of our morning up top. Then disembarked.

 

As you can see, we didn't spent much on excursions, personal choice, but chose just to get off the ships and walk around. Our favorite part going south was that the weather had improved and we spent hours up top watching the scenery. It was gorgeous.

 

Let me know if you have any other questions.

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Thank you so much for taking the time to share your experience. Their excursions seem so high (and that’s 2017 prices) so who knows how high 2018 will be. Would love to experience Atlantic Ocean Road but not sure it’s worth the money they are asking. I about fell over when I saw the Kirkenes Crab Safari 2017 price but reviews are awesome. We went to Russia a couple of months ago so I don’t need to do that. I think we embark and sail out of Kirkenes at 8pm and we wondered if we could do the Crab Safari on our own before we board the ship but figure that companies are dependent on Hurtigruten for business and so might not be willing to let us participate despite them offering it to local hotel guests for less money when I checked it out.

Sounds like your Magic Ice experience is like the Ice Bar we went to in Stockholm. So, that is off my bucket list but glad we did it.

$50 for Internet was a bargain for 12 days.

Did you do anything pre or post cruise in Bergen?

 

 

Thanks again for any thoughts, input, advice.

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We paid 400 krona (approx. $50 US) for a 12 day package which we felt was very reasonable compared to big cruise ships, plus the internet was reliable and fast, so well worth it. Not sure what the price was for the 6 day cruise.

 

 

 

Southbound:

 

 

 

Day 1: Kirkenes wasn't our favorite day. It was rainy and in September, a couple of the museums we might have gone to were closed. Didn't want to pay to go to the Russian border as I've read it wasn't all that exciting.

 

Vardo: 1 hour stop, enough time to go to the fortress

 

 

 

Day 2: Hammerfest: Did the Northern Most Town tour (1 hour). It was okay. Came back and went to the Polar Museum by the pier which was interesting.

 

Tromso: Did the Midnight Concert which was nice.

 

 

 

Day 3: Spent most of the morning up top watching the scenery. Got of briefly in Sortland for a quick walk. Got off in Stokmarkness to walk through the town. Didn't visit the Hurtigruten Museum which I hear was interesting.

 

Svolvaer: Went to Magic Ice which was fun. Cost was $36 US for 2. They dress you in heavy parkas and gloves and give you a drink. Kind of hard to explain but you might goggle it.

 

 

 

Day 4: Again, spent most of the morning up top watching the scenery. Got off in the afternoon ports and walked around.

 

 

 

Day 5: Got off in Trondheim and walked around. Trondheim was one of our favorite ports. We walked across the Flower Bridge and by the old warehouse district and then back through the heart of town.

 

 

 

Day 6: Again, spent most of our morning up top. Then disembarked.

 

 

 

As you can see, we didn't spent much on excursions, personal choice, but chose just to get off the ships and walk around. Our favorite part going south was that the weather had improved and we spent hours up top watching the scenery. It was gorgeous.

 

 

 

Let me know if you have any other questions.

 

 

 

Thanks for your Southbound highlights, would you mind touching on the Northbound as we are taking the 12 day voyage next March and would love to hear about your trip.

 

Thanks

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Forums

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I would follow up on the King Crab exercusion to see if you can find a lower price. It did sound like a lot of fun, but you're right, the price is way too high lus the day we were there it was cold and rainy so wouldn't have been that much fun.

 

In Bergen, definitely do the finucular and once up there, take the short hike to the pond, especially if the weather is good. Other than that, because the first day it was raining, we didn't do much other than the Hanseatic museum which was interesting. We had lunch at Madam Elle just down the street from the museum and it was good. Just enjoyed walking around. Would have liked to see some of the other sights but couldn't get my traveling companions onboard.

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While Hurtigruten excursions are quite high priced the internet prices are reasonable.

There are two types of internet:

Standard (1Mbit speed for use in social media, email simple surfing, not for streaming).

• One day standard internet 50 NOK

• Three day standard internet 125 NOK

• Five day standard internet 200 NOK

• Eleven day standard internet 400 NOK

 

Premium internet is also available for 250 NOK - 5Mbit for 4 hrs active use. It will be sold in reception.

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Forums

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Thank you so much for taking the time to share your experience. Their excursions seem so high (and that’s 2017 prices) so who knows how high 2018 will be. Would love to experience Atlantic Ocean Road but not sure it’s worth the money they are asking. I about fell over when I saw the Kirkenes Crab Safari 2017 price but reviews are awesome. We went to Russia a couple of months ago so I don’t need to do that. I think we embark and sail out of Kirkenes at 8pm and we wondered if we could do the Crab Safari on our own before we board the ship but figure that companies are dependent on Hurtigruten for business and so might not be willing to let us participate despite them offering it to local hotel guests for less money when I checked it out.

Sounds like your Magic Ice experience is like the Ice Bar we went to in Stockholm. So, that is off my bucket list but glad we did it.

$50 for Internet was a bargain for 12 days.

Did you do anything pre or post cruise in Bergen?

 

 

Thanks again for any thoughts, input, advice.

 

 

We did the Atlantic Road and really enjoyed it though the evening meal was poor. Consider Breakfast at the North Cape ( book as late as possible;you don’t want to go on a foggy day) where you will be the only ship there.

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While Hurtigruten excursions are quite high priced the internet prices are reasonable.

There are two types of internet:

Standard (1Mbit speed for use in social media, email simple surfing, not for streaming).

• One day standard internet 50 NOK

• Three day standard internet 125 NOK

• Five day standard internet 200 NOK

• Eleven day standard internet 400 NOK

 

Premium internet is also available for 250 NOK - 5Mbit for 4 hrs active use. It will be sold in reception.

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Forums

 

Thank you for such precise info. Another question is if you have to use the ships computers or is Wi-Fi available in their Internet room? I realize this might vary by the ship.

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Beachdreaming: Was Russia a port on a cruise or did you go there independently? St. Petersburg is on our bucket list but we want to spend at least 3 days there so except for one RCCL cruise, most only spend 2 days.

 

Also, we took our IPads and got internet anywhere on the ship.

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Northbound:

 

Day 2: We did the Hike to a Shieling but I don't know if that's available in March. Even though it says easy, I would call it more of a medium hike as it was a constant slow uphill. We overdressed and got very warm.

Evening stop was in Alesund. We just got off the ship and walked around. It was a nice port

 

Day 3: Got off in Trondheim and walked around. Went to the warehouse district and then crossed the bridge back to the Cathedral. We didn't go in. Walked back through town. Really liked Trondheim. You'll make another stop there in the morning southbound.

 

Day 4: Today you cross the Arctic Circle around 7:15 am so be prepared to jump out of bed when they announce it if you want to get a picture of the little island with the world globe.

We got off in Bodo and walked around. Not much to see. That evening we did the Viking Feast which was fun. Beware: They give you a lot of food. The meat was lamb and it was very good.

 

Day 5: Tromso: Got off and intended to go the museum but took a wrong turn and ended up at the Mack brewery. They weren't giving any tours that day but we went next door for beer. Very good. Then proceeded to walk around town.

 

Day 6: Konningsvag: We got off the ship, took a right and took a leisurely walk through the town. Veryquaint and pretty. We were there on a Sunday so pretty much everything was closed and it was very quiet. There is an Ice Bar but it had closed forthe season.

 

Day 7: Kirkenes: Raining, not a lot to see in town in September. Vardo: get off and go up to the port.

 

Be sure to pack a knit hat and gloves. It gets very cold and windy when up top. Also, binoculars are nice to have. We didn't see wildlife but you could look at things on shore.

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Beachdreaming: Was Russia a port on a cruise or did you go there independently? St. Petersburg is on our bucket list but we want to spend at least 3 days there so except for one RCCL cruise, most only spend 2 days.

 

Also, we took our IPads and got internet anywhere on the ship.

 

We did the 12 day Baltic on Zuiderdam that had 2 days in St Petersburg. We went to Moscow via train with HAL the first day and then did an awesome independent tour in St Pete. The Moscow day was LONG day - 7 am to 1 am. Various negatives (train food worse than the worst airplane food and our guide managed to lose one of our tour mates) but glad we did it because we wanted to see Red Square and St Basils Cathedral in person. We also saw the Armory there with some of the Czars treasures/history. St Pete was a “day in the life of a local” - rode numerous subways to see architectural highlights in them, went to a local neighborhood and market to see how they live, and ate at a local restaurant. We did this because we had already been fortunate enough to see an amazing Treasures of the Czars exhibition that came to the USA years ago, so we felt we didn’t need to see all the excess/gold treasures again. Most folks loved St Pete but did complain about how crowded it was. They were very impressed when we talked about our day there but then again, they still needed to see the treasures.

 

Thanks again for answering my questions. Sadly, I will probably have more -we haven’t booked yet and keep changing our plans about going.

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Thank you for such precise info. Another question is if you have to use the ships computers or is Wi-Fi available in their Internet room? I realize this might vary by the ship.

 

 

Do not believe they do have computers. Wi-fi all over the ship including cabins.

Please also note that Hurtigruten is small working ships and can not be compared with ordinary cruise lines. All ships are different.

 

 

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Do not believe they do have computers. Wi-fi all over the ship including cabins.

Please also note that Hurtigruten is small working ships and can not be compared with ordinary cruise lines. All ships are different.

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Forums

 

Thanks. If i’m remembering correctly (which is always a problem) I think the video I saw of the Midnasol internet room had about 4 computers and for such a “large” ship, that seemed like a small number. We too would have our own iPad and that’s why I wondered about WiFi. We keep revamping our thoughts/plans about what we want to do and so that means each time we change something, then with Hurtigruten, it means a vessel change. So, I’ve totally confused myself and it might all be for naught.

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Beachdreaming: Was Russia a port on a cruise or did you go there independently? St. Petersburg is on our bucket list but we want to spend at least 3 days there so except for one RCCL cruise, most only spend 2 days.

 

Also, we took our IPads and got internet anywhere on the ship.

 

Another thought about Russia is doing a river cruise there. Or maybe you’ve already considered that.

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Thanks. If i’m remembering correctly (which is always a problem) I think the video I saw of the Midnasol internet room had about 4 computers and for such a “large” ship, that seemed like a small number. We too would have our own iPad.

 

 

You are right, Midnatssol does have computers. However bringing you own iPad you’ll not need the computers.

 

 

 

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While Hurtigruten excursions are quite high priced the internet prices are reasonable.

There are two types of internet:

Standard (1Mbit speed for use in social media, email simple surfing, not for streaming).

• One day standard internet 50 NOK

• Three day standard internet 125 NOK

• Five day standard internet 200 NOK

• Eleven day standard internet 400 NOK

 

Premium internet is also available for 250 NOK - 5Mbit for 4 hrs active use. It will be sold in reception.

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Forums

 

 

Regarding internet, I paid ZERO for internet and had as much internet as I wanted. What is mean is that it was unecessary to pay extra. I have TMobile and my phone/data plan includes, no extra charge or special plans, international data. There are NO roaming charges. Also free texting as well. Phone calls 20cents/min but I can text/FB message so no need to call.

 

On my Sept 2016 voyage, Bergen RT to Trondheim, I posted regularly on FB, IG and all. No problem connecting to towers. There was usually 3/4G service. If I was somewhere where there was wifi, I connected to that.

 

Tmobile for an international regular traveler is essential.

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Regarding internet, I paid ZERO for internet and had as much internet as I wanted. What is mean is that it was unecessary to pay extra. I have TMobile and my phone/data plan includes, no extra charge or special plans, international data. There are NO roaming charges. Also free texting as well. Phone calls 20cents/min but I can text/FB message so no need to call.

 

On my Sept 2016 voyage, Bergen RT to Trondheim, I posted regularly on FB, IG and all. No problem connecting to towers. There was usually 3/4G service. If I was somewhere where there was wifi, I connected to that.

 

Tmobile for an international regular traveler is essential.

 

Is the TMobile plan from USA or Europe? I'm from Australia and roaming charges in the EU with my Telco is way too high, so looking to buy a local SIM card so I can 'roam like at home' within the EU.

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Regarding internet ... I posted regularly on FB, IG and all. No problem connecting to towers. There was usually 3/4G service. If I was somewhere where there was wifi, I connected to that...

 

Thanks for that info, but what are FB and IG???

 

Also, were you able to send and receive while the ship was traveling, or only when in port?

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Is the TMobile plan from USA or Europe? I'm from Australia and roaming charges in the EU with my Telco is way too high, so looking to buy a local SIM card so I can 'roam like at home' within the EU.

 

 

I'm sorry I should have been clear... I'm in the USA

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Thanks for that info, but what are FB and IG???

 

Also, were you able to send and receive while the ship was traveling, or only when in port?

 

FB is facebook

IG is Instagram

 

The ship was close to shore and towers much of the voyage. There were a Couple times I had to wait a bit but I really had no problem.

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Is the TMobile plan from USA or Europe? I'm from Australia and roaming charges in the EU with my Telco is way too high, so looking to buy a local SIM card so I can 'roam like at home' within the EU.

 

TMobile is the US subsidiary of Deutsche Telekom (German company). They do not appear to have a subsidiary in Australia.

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