Sunday 28th May – Overnight Ferry to Bergen

Couldn’t quite work out this breakfast thing at the hotel. There was a huge queue at 8.00am awaiting the opening of the gates and then it was stormed. No one checked our room keys so not sure if it was gratis to the population of Trondheim or not. Whatever, it was still a great spread.

We walked to the Hurtigruten terminal where we boarded our ship the MS Midnatsol. It is like the ferry you catch from Melbourne to Tassie but mostly foot passengers. There are a few cars below but what we can gather is that it is more used for tourism now.

 


Guess prior to the roads and tunnels, this was the main way to get goods up and down the coast.
A cut down version of her.


This is the boat that heads north whilst ours is going south. It was berthed behind us in Trondheim.

 


Our boudoir for the evening. Not quite a salubrious as the Getaway but more than functional. Also includes a private bathroom.

 


It is a lovely small ship with lots of lounges to sit around and enjoy the views as we cruise around the many small rocky islands. The main observation deck which is two storied – eat your heart out Sue and Steve.

 

Rather than cruise the west coast of Norway with a cruise line, it would be much better to go this route. There is a commentary as you leave each port in English. You would probably say it is a milk run. There is a large group of Canadians on board and we think they may have started up in northern Norway.
We cruised through this huge archipelago until 1700hours when we came into a port called Kristiansund. We passed this little beauty on our way in.


As many of you may know, Norway hit pay dirt when it started drilling for oil in the North Sea. They were smart and set up a huge savings fund with all this revenue as they knew the oil would not last forever or that the price would remain sustainable. Alberta started to do the same thing but the bees just couldn’t keep their claws out of the honey pot and now that it is raining cats and dogs there is no money or very little money to use as back up. Enough of the “pissed off with politicians” rant.
The scenery we are seeing is what we imagine Newfoundland to look like. All the colourful weatherboard houses sitting on rocky outcrops.


There are many bridges interconnecting all the islands and we think we can make out a few tunnels.

Wish we had done a little more homework on this portion of the trip and maybe have joined it further north of Trondheim and then cruised down. It is what it is and we are enjoying it immensely. So peaceful.


This particular ship has done a number of Antarctic trips which we imagine would be fantastic as they always put on many informed lecturers. It is such a perfect size.


After Kristiansund, which we think is a town that primarily services the oil industry, we headed out to sea. The seas are like glass and we are so lucky as there are a lot of stations on the boat where they have stockpiled vomit bags which tells us that this trip could be a little on the rough side.


Tonight we have booked in for a late dinner which is three course and is going to cost us $75 each – eeekk! They do have a rather captive audience though.
The great thing about doing this trip at this time of the year is that it is light so late so we will get to enjoy the scenery for quite a few extra hours.
Prior to dinner our ship/ferry passed the northbound one coming the other way so was able to get a nice photo of these types of ships. They are a nice size, very comfortable and work well ducking and weaving amongst all the islands and through narrow fjords.

Here are a few stats on the ship. 16,151 tonnes compared to the monolithic Getaway at 145,000 tonnes. Maximum capacity of 970 which we think includes staff as opposed to 6,200 fully loaded Getaway. You can see why the smaller ship is nicer. Cannot believe how maneuverable this ship is.
Deep sea fishing is a big industry here on the west coast of Norway but also some evidence of fish farming. Salmon we suspect.

BTW – Dinner was excellent. Arctic char and some yummy cheese cake.


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