Maritime travels to Alaska, Hawaii, the Panama Canal, Caribbean and Mexico have turned Cruise Critic member orangevet and her husband into seasoned cruisers of the western hemisphere. But the couple were in search of something new. Intrigued by Western Europe and the British Isles, they decided to set sail aboard Holland America‘s Ryndam.
From the overnight accommodations to the bus ride from London to Dover, everything was booked ahead of time. A good night’s sleep at a local bed-and-breakfast had them at port early enough to be the second and third passengers aboard the ship. Antiques, artwork and friendly staff blended to create a refined feel. And their verandah cabin provided just the right dose of relaxation in between all the excursions.
Orangevet and her husband leapt right into the land-bound activities. On the Waterfalls and Waffles tour in Eidfjord, a scenic drive through the mountains, a river and plateau eventually led to a lodge, where waffles with strawberry sauce and cream were served on a silver platter. After seven days had passed, the ship returned to Dover, where it parted ways with many of the passengers. Orangevet and her husband were among the few to stay onboard.
The second half of their trip was a bit more laid back — walking the villages and browsing the markets were day-to-day activities — and felt comfortable despite the unfamiliar surroundings. White wooden homes lining cobblestone streets made for postcard-worthy pictures in Old Stavanger, while the last stop in Ulvik rewarded them with a breathtaking panorama of mountains, glaciers and grazed hills.
But it wasn’t just the last stop that left orangevet wanting more. Her plans to return to Europe and continue with the northern part of the region are underway. In the meantime, she hopes to inspire others with her diary of adventures.
Read orangevet’s full review for details on every stop off the beaten path.
For their efforts, orangevet and four other Reviewers of the Week — SliceOfLife, teflonjmd, wacbozo and scandst — receive Cruise Critic logo items.
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