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galeforce9

Route of the Vikings Live on Board

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The tow is very pretty. It has a little harbour, a rather smart hotel, an active fishing fleet and a very well rated Herring Era museum.

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As a reward for the walk we visited the Segull 67 artisan brewery in town. This was also the focus of another Seabourn tour. It’s only about 5 minutes walk from the tender dock. The prices are typically Icelandic but I can recommend the Original. Very nice at £7.50 a pint outside in the sun. f9e52a5e0f97345f7809e7612a229444.jpg8e984b12832137c7a17467475af246fa.jpgdaf31dc7b96e7c0f3717a0e883ccd2fc.jpg

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galeforce9

 

still loving your pictures! Thanks for taking the time to post. Iceland looks stunning!

 

Mj

 

+1 !

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Thanks everyone. We’ve had an ice chart for our route to Greenland in the cabins tonight. Lots of ice around Tasilaq! A bit worrying as we have constant fog horn at the moment! 9d0fcd17cdb2ac1d232813331ecbbd79.jpg1dba2820d689c670c3d348e10bf10c37.jpg

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Good meal tonight again.

 

Special order sushi and sashimi - thanks to all who helped arrange, followed by monkfish as a second course and beef main

 

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The colours are coming through on your photos so beautifully.

Food looks great too.

Interesting to see the ice chart.

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In Akureyri I organised a taxi tour to take us and another lovely cruise critic couple on a ten hour trip. First stop was Godafoss Waterfall, or waterfall of the gods.

 

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This shows how much the weather can change from one day to the next. This was the day before Siglufjordur.

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Wonderful photos Galeforce! I have really enjoyed your voyage.

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Galeforce, I very much enjoy your careful photo composition style, and always look forward to your posts!

 

It is also nice to see a place one can cruise to that looks consistently cool but not freezing, so I would not likely have my usual problem of feeling too hot most of the time on cruises ( have been to cool Alaska four times, beautiful and usually not hot, but of course Iceland is different). Have been researching Iceland trips more aggressively since your posts on this trip, noting DH would also enjoy it and have a field day taking many pictures.

 

Thank you so much for taking time.

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Tasiilaq, Greenland

 

So, I’ve finally added Greenland to my list of visited places. Not quite a country in its own right but included on some lists. Nearly at 80 countries ‘proper’, along with quite a few of these extras, even though I’ve moved away from adding to the list as my primary reason to travel. I’ve realised that I enjoy more remote places and experiences rather than must see sights and places high on typical bucket lists.

 

I was up early at 5ish on our approach to Tasiilaq yesterday, in the hope of spotting icebergs. However, the fog horn had been sounding for 36 hours at that stage, every two minutes and all I could see from early risers Observation Bar coffee were the reflections in the 180 degree windows of the other passengers who’d had similar thoughts. Still, I consoled myself with a small pain au chocolate and a muffin.

 

After about 30 minutes there were a few tantalising glimpses of Greenland, as we approached land. An envelope-like slit appeared in the fog, with a peak of mountains and glaciers beyond. This closed up again but then icebergs loomed out of the murk.

 

Coffees were quickly set down. I’d dressed in layers but were glad of these as I ventured out into the breeze that was hitting the forward decks. Some passengers seemed to be wearing not much more than they’d slept in and couldn’t stand it! I heard it mentioned a few times yesterday that it actually felt much colder than the Antarctic summer many had experienced on trips. I’d agree with this. There was a certain invasive dampness yesterday that chilled you right through!

 

Photo techy alert - please ignore if not interested! Light levels were very low for our approach because of the fog and damp, even though dawn had been many hours earlier. This left pictures that were less than spectacular. Even with an ISO of 800/1600, the best f stop was only around 8 or 9.5, giving little depth of field. Looking at the camera’s histogram, the fog and white ice were also playing tricks with the readings. This just meant I had to take even more than usual, to try and get something I was happy with and also hope for better weather in the way out. The experience was still good though and the bands of lifting mist on the land provided interest.

 

After early breakfast, it was time to disembark. The ship’s time was around 8am, although this was actually 1 hour in front of local time. This was a bit dangerous, as we hadn’t actually been advised this and telephones also seemed to be resetting themselves to a third, even earlier time. However, everyone was back on board ok, so it clearly wasn’t an ultimate issue.

 

Tenders were being used successfully and we were the first two passengers ashore, with a fairly private ride, along with two eager crew on their break.

 

The bay was unusually quite ice free. Apparently, even at this time of year it can be quite ice-choked but this can mean trips are cancelled as it is difficult to approach shore.

 

At first glance the town looked like it could only provide an hour or so interest in the drizzle that had started to fall. We climbed up a little hillock in the centre or town to get some nice views of the colourful houses, taking care to respect people’s privacy and the vegetation. There were great flowers everywhere growing wild. We had all attended a mandatory briefing yesterday about protecting the arctic, required by the association of arctic cruise operators.

 

We then looked for an open gift store (this is when we realised the time issues, as advertised opening hours didn’t seem to be adhered to). Eventually a workshop opened that I had written down beforehand, called Skink, or something similar. There were 3 local workers fashioning reindeer horn into the most spectacular pieces. (Note picture from last night). They were happy for us to watch them work and were hurriedly displaying all the stick they had. We bought a carved scary man, like the one I took a photo of and a polar bear, which was attached by a peg to a local who was wrestling it. Fantastic, detailed work. I debated about some whale tail earrings but thought I’d spent enough!

 

We then headed up an even higher hill at the other end of town, above the harbour and museum. It was quite a climb. There were husky dogs chained up but they were very placid and good natured. When we got to the top we realised one of the dogs’ chains wasn’t attached and he was inquisitively looking at us. However, we just exchanged glances, he followed us a little and then went about his business!

 

Before coming to town, I’d researched a walk called the Valley of the Flowers. Whilst up the hill, we’d spotted the cemetery, which was a waymarker to the Valley. We decide to go ahead with the walk, in spite of the rain.

 

Before the cemetary, there was an information board with lakes and paths marked. None of these were visible from the town or the surrounding hills. We walked up past three lakes, at different levels, connected by waterfalls and surrounded by hills with remnants of snow. Wildflowers were everywhere. We encountered just two other solo passengers on the walk. It was stunning.

 

Back in town, the tourist information centre had opened and I bought a Greenland mug. I also headed back to the craft workshop but most of it’s stock had gone!! I knew I should have bought those earrings!! Glad to see we had supported this local enterprise though, which was keeping craft skills alive.

 

The weather had picked up a bit so we ventured to the far right of town as viewed from the shore. More colourful photos of houses and boats and good views of the ship. Four husky puppies wanted to adopt us but we firmly ignored their attentions. All I wanted to do was take lots of photos of course!

 

We were back on board for 2 00, for a patio grill lunch al fresco, with most of the other passengers it seemed. There was a good atmosphere under the heat lamps as people relived their busy day. Sail away was about 3. Views of the icebergs had improved, although it was still raining.

 

All our wet gear hung about the cabin to dry, we headed out to look for whales and watch the polar plunge.

 

By the end of the day I’d covered over 25,000 steps (10.5 miles) and had earned the nice meal and a few drinks!

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Galeforce, Your descriptions are so vivid. You had me wanting to take that hike and see the flowers--as well as the crafts.

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galeforce9,

Love your posts and having done a “live from” blog know how much effort goes into your writing which BTW is excellent and your photos are over the top.

DW and I are busy packing and will be joining the Quest in Reykjavik. One question about clothing. We have some Seabourn parkas with puffys to go underneath from our Antarctica trip for severe cold. However, we also have a more versatile Seabourn parka with zippered hood from our Alaska trip that is great in the rain. DW thinks the puffy with a light rain jacket might suffice. What are you finding to be the most comfortable combination for the cold and rain you have experienced so far? I know you say layers but what kind? Also, how cold is it onboard the ship in the public areas? Good for long sleeves, sweaters, and jackets. Thanks as your answer may save me from overpacking. lol BTW as a Fitbit owner 25,000 steps is very impressive in my book.

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Wow wow wow. Not much time but Skjoldungen fjord is the top scenic cruise ever. These photos are totally as taken

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