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sansterre

LIVE from the ZUIDERDAM - VOYAGE OF THE VIKINGS

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, sansterre said:

Looks like I can only upload one photo at a time.

This will take eons!

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The room service guy told us that if we had the lobster for dinner  he would get a special lunch . We think that's great and were thrilled for him and we had a huge tail for dinner enough for 2 .

Edited by scubacruiserx2

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I was looking at the HAL website and, as usual, got frustrated trying to find this cruise for 2020.  Under what destination do I look and what month/months?  Is there more than one of these Viking cruises a year?

 

Thank you.

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1 hour ago, dot73 said:

Is there more than one of these Viking cruises a year?

There is the Voyage of the Vikings that sansterre is on, and there is the Viking Passage cruise. They are totally separate cruises, typically on different ships, but with similar, and many of the same, ports.

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On 8/10/2019 at 12:21 PM, sansterre said:

We received a notice today on next year's Voyage of the Vikings.  It is 35 days on the Zaandam,  departing Boston on July 18.  It looks like it will go to the Faroe Islands in 2020!

Try searching under the Zaandam for Voyage of the Vikings 2020.  It is Boston -Amsterdam - Boston.

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The Zuiderdam docked in Belfast.

Hotel Director on left, not sure who is in center, Captain Vaartjes on the right.

 

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Posted (edited)

First stop on our excursion was the "Dark Hedges" as seen in Game of Thrones.

On our way we had to wait for the cows to cross the road.

The "hedges" are actually beech trees.  Originally there were 200 of them.

Now after about 200 years, only 70 still survive.

 

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Edited by sansterre

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Loving your reports.

 

Great pictures.

 

Talking about trees.  At one time when we first sailed into Aruba (back in the early 80's) there used to many Divi Divi Trees in the shallow waters as entered and left the port area.  The last time we were there only 1 was left.

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3 hours ago, sansterre said:

The Zuiderdam docked in Belfast.

Hotel Director on left, not sure who is in center, Captain Vaartjes on the right.

 

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Thanks for the officers pics. Have they been dockside to greet you as you return?

We thanked them last month for doing so. Apparently, only a few of the HAL ships have this policy.

Herman, executive housekeeper, is in the middle of your pic.

Below pic was taken at the last gala with their dress uniforms. I don't think you will see this on many lines.

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6 hours ago, RuthC said:

There is the Voyage of the Vikings that sansterre is on, and there is the Viking Passage cruise. They are totally separate cruises, typically on different ships, but with similar, and many of the same, ports.

Thank you, Ruth.  I am hoping to retire in 2 years and will be able to do some longer cruises.  I cruise  mostly solo and find that I get the the best solo rate if I book early.   I am aiming for 2021.

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Thanks St. Pete Cruiser for identifying the Executive Housekeeper.  I have not met him as yet.  We see the Captain often around the ship.  But I did not notice any officers lined up for Gala Nights.  We eat on MDR 2.  Perhaps this picture is from MDR 3?

Or perhaps this only occurs on the last Gala?  I"ll be sure to look for it!

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More from Belfast and North Ireland.  It gets even better around the coast!

Our second stop on our small excursion (again with Tours by Locals) was a  fabulous view of Carrick a Rede Rope Bridge!

No we didn't walk the bridge to the island.  I would, have loved to have done that 50 years ago.  Our guide had headset which, when we looked into it, had a movie which gave us a feel of flying over and around the bridge for a closer view.  That was a very clever idea.

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Posted (edited)

Joe then took us to the third stop of the Top 5:  Baintoy Harbor.  It is an old quarry and shipping point.  Lovely! 

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Edited by sansterre

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Fourth on the List of Top 5 is the Giant's Causeway!

This is a series of amazing basal rock that appear as steps suitable for a giant's playground.  Younger people were climbing all over the rocks, especially near the water.

Joe suggested we take the shuttle down and back instead of walking the mile + down and back up.  It cost just over a dollar each way;  all 7 of us agreed It was money well spent.

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On the other side of the causeway, we found less people and more rocks.  I can't imagine how they could possibly be formed - some volcanic explosion to be sure.  But I do want to read more about the Giant's Causeway - simply amazing and a sight to see!

 

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Posted (edited)

Just a few more photos from Belfast........

We stopped for a snack at the Wee Cottage Tea Room next to Dunluce Castle.

DH and I ordered 2 scones.  4 large scones arrived as pictured below and they were wonderful!

Afterwards we walked over to take a look at Dunluce Castle.

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Edited by sansterre

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I must put this photo in for all flower lovers.  They were at our table in the tea room.

As I recall these are called Sweet Pea Flowers.  But it has been years since I've seen them so please correct me if I'm wrong.

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Posted (edited)

Our final stop in Belfast was at the Belfast Murals.  They have appeared where the walls were in the 60's and 70's.  It was raining but we spent a few minutes looking at the street where so much violence occurred back then.  One sign had a message for the USA and England. (first photo)

At another point Joe gave us sharpies and we signed a wall that still exists.  Although there isn't any violence today, 95% of the children go to parochial school - either Catholic or Protestant.  The opinion of some is by having children mix in public school, they best can learn to live with each other.

 

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Edited by sansterre

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Today was a rainy and cold day in Djupivogur, Iceland.  We were on a tour of 18 people to see the Hoffellsjokull Glacier.  We drove for two hours in the rain to get there, spent about an hour at the glacier without rain, and drove two hours home with rain most of the time.  So we were very lucky with the weather.

Now we are cruising WSW around the southern coast of Iceland.  According to the Captain, ships are required to stay away from some of the southern coast to protect the environment.

Photos of glaciers and horses later.

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19 minutes ago, sansterre said:

Today was a rainy and cold day in Djupivogur, Iceland.  We were on a tour of 18 people to see the Hoffellsjokull Glacier.  We drove for two hours in the rain to get there, spent about an hour at the glacier without rain, and drove two hours home with rain most of the time.  So we were very lucky with the weather.

Now we are cruising WSW around the southern coast of Iceland.  According to the Captain, ships are required to stay away from some of the southern coast to protect the environment.

Photos of glaciers and horses later.

 

The glacier how cool is that . Did you get to do the glacier hike ?

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11 hours ago, scubacruiserx2 said:

 

The glacier how cool is that . Did you get to do the glacier hike ?

We hiked on the glacial moraine.  I suppose if I had been quick, I could have run down to the glacier and back.  But really, not that much time.  Loading photos now.  

Will post asap.  Off to breakfast in MDR now.

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Loving your trip report, thanks for sharing!

 

We are waiting for the VOV 2021 dates to magically appear on the HAL website. 

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