Vision of the Seas Cruise Review by teacherman: Almost Perfect
Overall Member Rating
Destination: Baltic Sea
We are mid 60's and this was our 27th cruise. We do a LOT of research before we travel, and did so for this cruise. We had been on the Vision in the Caribbean in December and enjoyed our cruise. So, when we heard about a chance to go to the North Cape, we booked it. Our plan was to fly to Copenhagen on Wednesday, enjoy 2 days in that city, and then the cruise would leave on Saturday. Our main concern was what would the weather be like in northern Norway. Also, we do not normally do ship tours, but we found very little information regarding private tours. We became somewhat apprehensive of how this cruise would turn out, but it was great.
Pre-Cruise: Our plane flew for about 45 minutes and then had to return to Detroit due to "mechanical" problems. After 2 hours sitting in the airport, we were informed that the flight was cancelled and all passengers would be "re-booked" on first available flights. I called the airline on my cell phone and was re-booked the following day. More However, we now would lose 1 of our 2 days in Copenhagen. We stayed at Hotel Christian IV. I cannot praise that hotel enough for the consideration that they have given us (you can read about it under my review on TripAdvisor). Not only did we arrive 1 day late, but wife's suitcase did not arrive. It did make it to our hotel the next morning before we left for the cruise. I guess it traveled on a different flight.
Ship: Vision is an older, smaller ship. We like a ship that size. Passengers were about 50% from Denmark. Americans were about 10%. Very enjoyable to spend time with so many other nationalities.
Service from the crew was outstanding in all areas. Food was fine for us, with many choices available. People who complain about food on a cruise ship must have a great home life. We met many people from our roll call, and enjoyed cocktail hour in the Diamond Lounge each evening.
Entertainment: Hey, it is a cruise ship, not Broadway. We enjoyed the Gauchos and Beetle Maniacs, as well as a few of the other acts. All musical groups around the ship were pretty good.
Ports: Alesund-we walked around, took some lovely pictures, and bought a few souveniers; Honningsvag-we did a ship's tour called Fishing Villages and Christmas House (a souvenier shack) which allowed us to travel through the area and see some of the tundra type landscape, Tromso-beautiful port where we walked about 10 minutes to the University Botanical Garden that we explored for a couple of hours; Geiranger-we took the local HO-HO bus to view the fijord from several different points, Bergen-we strolled through the city and took the funicular to the top of the mountain and stopped for a beer; Kristianstaad-small resort city where w e walked around, bought some things, stopped for a beer (see a pattern here??)
Dis-Embarkation: Our flight was at 2:45. so we hung around on the ship until the last possible minute. We walked off at 9:15, picked up our luggage in the terminal (easy to find as they were the only 2 left) and got in the looooong taxi line. It appeared that many of those 900 Danish passengers were taking taxis to get home. We were in the line for 1 hour, and were the last 2 people to get a taxi.
Summary: The weather was great for the entire trip. Many days we would return from the ports and sit on deck in shorts and tee shirts. We only had a little rain on one of our sea days. I think we may have been very blessed in this. Scandinavia is expensive. Two beers were about $30 in most ports. I saw a pizza slice offered for $9. We usually try and enjoy a few meals in port towns, but not on this cruise. Our taxi to the airport was about $75. We thought Norway might be like Alaska but it was a different experience. Getting your nose painted blue and attending the "Arctic Circle" ceremony was great fun. And sailing by the North Cape when leaving Honningsvaag was a thrill that will be long remembered, as even the wait staff came out to take pictures. I am glad we made it to the ship, and that the "mechanical problems" were not more serious. Less
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