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Havila Capella


gwenmarie
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@Flyinby  Update!  When I used Chrome, I saw the booking forms in English.  In Microsoft Edge the same website changes the booking forms to Norwegian!  Go figure?  Thank you for the tip.

 

Anyway, I have my booking for June 2024 (a loong wait) but now need to call because I don't want to be in the cabin location I was assigned automatically.  The only way to change cabins is to call them in Norway between midnight and 8am Pacific time.  

 

~Nancy

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Glad you got in to the English version, I remember the cabin choice situation from before, but I think it had already picked the one I wanted.  They were quicker with emails back then, I hope they get that remedied since calling is kind of inconvenient.  I think a majority of their passengers are European, so it's not so much of an issue with time differences.

 

June 2024 does seem like a long time, but so did booking this current one back in Feb. 2022, and being early has its advantages.  In fact, I have a May 2024 Viking river cruise scheduled from several months ago...that way I can get a cabin I want, instead of what's left over, or an inside bottom-deck cabin next to the anchor chain 8^).  Off to Oslo in the AM...

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On 2/6/2023 at 8:26 PM, Flyinby said:

Thanks, we're excited too! we fly out Wednesday the 8th from San Luis Obispo to Oslo.  2 nights in Oslo, then the train to Flam for one night, then train to Bergen for 2 nights before boarding the Capella on the 14th.

 

I got a kick out of this, I was searching  for some info and this came up:

https://www.allertravel.com/arne-og-carlos-knitting-under-the-aurora-borealis

 

Turns out they're on the same ship, same time...so if we find out we didn't bring enough warm clothes, we can just ask them to knit us up some extra stuff 8^).

 

The ship looks great, with the nice front lounge with windows all around, so there's a refuge with a view if it gets too cold outside.  We'll hope for some clear or semi-clear nights, and if we get it have some good chances to see the aurora, but we'll be fine either way.  The temperatures really don't look too bad, even in Kirkenes, but depending on the wind I suppose.  I'm bringing a pair of shorts, just in case...8^).

 

I'll be sure to report back, to give a California perspective on the trip and Havila.  Did you ever decide on your booking?

I can tell you that there are lots of places to watch the scenery go by on Decks 6 & 8.  At the front of Deck 6, the windows are higher but from the Excursion Desk/Shop back through the restaurant, they’re full windows.

 

About the aurora borealis, it is gray to the naked eye.  You get the green when you have a long exposure with your camera.  Test it out at home so that you know what to do when you’re there.  Biggest issue I had there was trying too keep steady, even for 3 seconds, with the cold wind blowing.

B26826A0-DD1E-4218-9185-8BE5FA2E4F34.jpeg

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  • 4 weeks later...

Hello @Flyinby and welcome back from Norway! Your trip went by so fast! I read your posts over on the Hurtigruten thread.  Thanks for those!

 

One question about the dining room food....is it okay to ask for slight changes to the posted ingredients?  For example: I'm wondering about something like leaving off a sauce, or no mayonnaise on a sandwich.  Or asking them to cook the, as you described "scrambled eggs (semi-runny though)" a little more, so they aren't runny?  I know that a drastic change in ingredients or cooking method may be a step too far in this type of setting!  I don't want to insult the chef or disrupt the kitchen flow!!  😲

 

I'll be going in June 2024 so the excursions will change due to the season, and we will go into Geirangerfjord also, so no excursion needed there.

 

I will be in a Superior Seaview, not a suite, so am going to consider adding the Gold Package and beverage package. I do appreciate that if I don't get the Gold Package, in the dining room I can still order one of the dishes on it for about $15 if I really fancy something.  I'll do the math on the beverage package to see if I should get it.  I do like some wine with meals and some beer maybe while watching scenery. 

 

Do you have any comments on any enrichment/history/culture talks that may have been onboard?  That is a major aspect of what I loved on my previous favorite regular cruise line. (Crystal Cruises sadly went belly up).  Havila says some various talks are offered.

 

Anything you have time to share from your trip will be greatly appreciated!

 

Now, I'm hoping to hear that the last two ships, Polaris and Pollux will be put into service soon!  

 

Thank you,

~Nancy

 

 

 

 

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13 hours ago, oakridger said:

Hello @Flyinby and welcome back from Norway! Your trip went by so fast! I read your posts over on the Hurtigruten thread.  Thanks for those!

 

One question about the dining room food....is it okay to ask for slight changes to the posted ingredients?  For example: I'm wondering about something like leaving off a sauce, or no mayonnaise on a sandwich.  Or asking them to cook the, as you described "scrambled eggs (semi-runny though)" a little more, so they aren't runny?  I know that a drastic change in ingredients or cooking method may be a step too far in this type of setting!  I don't want to insult the chef or disrupt the kitchen flow!!  😲

 

I'll be going in June 2024 so the excursions will change due to the season, and we will go into Geirangerfjord also, so no excursion needed there.

 

I will be in a Superior Seaview, not a suite, so am going to consider adding the Gold Package and beverage package. I do appreciate that if I don't get the Gold Package, in the dining room I can still order one of the dishes on it for about $15 if I really fancy something.  I'll do the math on the beverage package to see if I should get it.  I do like some wine with meals and some beer maybe while watching scenery. 

 

Do you have any comments on any enrichment/history/culture talks that may have been onboard?  That is a major aspect of what I loved on my previous favorite regular cruise line. (Crystal Cruises sadly went belly up).  Havila says some various talks are offered.

 

Anything you have time to share from your trip will be greatly appreciated!

 

Now, I'm hoping to hear that the last two ships, Polaris and Pollux will be put into service soon!  

 

Thank you,

~Nancy

 

 

 

 

Hi Nancy, the entire trip lasted through most of February, but now it seems short.  It was a great trip, and other than missing the dog, I easily could have stayed for another round trip and extra time in Norway. I've been meaning to write a short "quick takes from" post about it, but am catching up on tasks, slowed down some by the 11-hour flight with a 9-hour time change...

 

You can make changes in the orders as far as leaving something off or getting a roll instead of toast; I didn't try changing the scrambled eggs though...all 3 of the hotels we used before the ship had the same scrambled eggs, so I just figured that's how they do it and never tried asking them to cook them longer.  They might be happy to do it though, I just didn't try it and they really weren't bad, just a bit softer than we're used to.

 

Mayonnaise or dressing though, no problem, just ask for it to be left off...I don't eat mayonnaise so can report that most of the time you won't even have to ask, as they don't seem to use mayo on everything like in the US.  I remember a food preferences/allergies form on the website, you could probably declare an allergy to something...in fact, I think I did put mayonnaise in that list 8^).

 

I enjoyed having the Gold package for the various coffees, drinks, and sparkling water, as well as the snack bar when we didn't want to go to the dining room, or missed the time.  But I really didn't use it much in the dining room, except for the sparkling water with dinner.  Though, as I mentioned, I'm a somewhat picky eater, I always found something that sounded OK, and often when I picked a starter or main course I was suspicious of, it was good.  One of the talks given in the conference room each day mentioned about the food process on board and how/why, and the speaker (a former Hurtigruten employee) said they were able to cut food waste (either 80 or 90) percent by the dining room procedure and also not having a buffett.

 

Each day there was a talk, 45 minutes to an hour, by Harold (he and Marie, former Hurtigruteners, handled such things and the excursions) covering upcoming destinations, northern lights info, local culture, information about the ship and Havila, and interesting stories.  Usually about 5:15 PM, very entertaining, informative and a daily highlight.  They have 22 days on. 22 off, so I don't know who handles it when they're off, but Harold was fun to listen to and nobody left in the middle.

 

Don't want to make this too long or I won't get to the "quick takes from" post, but I abandoned the idea of getting off at every port on the first day.  The ship is uncrowded and relaxing to be on, and I decided I'd get off when I felt like it 8^).  Did get pictures of most or all of the port stops though.

 

Gary

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On 2/8/2023 at 1:24 PM, UDChE89 said:

I can tell you that there are lots of places to watch the scenery go by on Decks 6 & 8.  At the front of Deck 6, the windows are higher but from the Excursion Desk/Shop back through the restaurant, they’re full windows.

 

About the aurora borealis, it is gray to the naked eye.  You get the green when you have a long exposure with your camera.  Test it out at home so that you know what to do when you’re there.  Biggest issue I had there was trying too keep steady, even for 3 seconds, with the cold wind blowing.

I really liked that forward area on deck 6, with the fireplaces, very relaxing, people reading, doing puzzles etc. with lots of windows.  All along deck 6, back to the dining rooms, was nice, plus snacks and coffee were right there.  I thought the bow of the ship would be a good place to visit often, but it was not...at least not in February, with the ship in motion.  That cold wind, added to by the ship's speed, felt like it would freeze any exposed bare skin (or eyeball) within a minute, if you could stand there that long.  I did go out to the front a lot up on deck 9, but had the sides or afterdeck to retreat to if the wind came up, and of course the great lounge up there that is always warm and always has a place to sit and watch the scenery with the all-around windows.

 

I missed the first northern lights display because I didn't know about enabling the announcements on the cabin phone, and it was late at night.  However, we did then have one that was as you describe, with a camera being needed to really "see" the display, and the following night the sky was "dancing for all to see".  I had brought a tripod, but it seemed somewhat pointless being on a moving ship, and besides, as you mentioned, that cold wind had no mercy.  Not to mention the snow/ice  on the deck and I hadn't brought the YakTrax up with me.  Fortunately they were bright enough that a fast lens and a second or so of exposure was enough, but I think you need to be on land to get those amazing photos we've seen.  Cold and miserable as it may have been, I had to stay out there until the lights subsided.

P23-0220-193122-1022807a.jpg

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@Flyinby, Gary, thank you so much for the detailed information.  Just what I was looking for!  It all sounds like the kind of trip I am looking for and now I just have to wait.......!!  I'm planning on time on land in Norway before and/or after the Havila voyage.  A lot to investigate, but that's part of the fun for me.

 

Tussen takk,

~Nancy

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