Sun through the Baltics
This was our second time cruising with NCL and by far was the best time we've ever had! The Ship itself is showing her age but it's size was perfect.. small enough to feel intimate and large enough to feel like a cruise ship. There was plenty to do on-board and all the staff was friendly and accommodating. Ports were Warnemunde (Rostock) Germany (you could transfer to Berlin but we chose not to). Tallin Estonia, St. Petersburg Russia, Stockholm (via Nynashamn) Sweden, Helsinki Finland. Embarkation was in Copenhagen which is quite the town!
Did not eat in any of the specialty restaurants or MDR's just spent our time out back in garden cafe and great outdoors with the buffet. Good selection on the buffet and OMG Pretzel Rolls!!! Did have some Tapas in Las Ramblas a few nights and some drinks there as well. If you take the Sun make sure to visit Manuel in the Great Outdoors and Renaldo in Las Ramblas!
All in All everything was great and we had a blast. Excellent crew and More
One thing of note: Europe has no concept of ADA for the most part and people should keep that in mind when booking excursions. Less
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Port and Shore Excursions
Finnish brown bear! Helsinki is another very typical laid back Scandanavian port and is absolutely gorgeous. We took the City sights tour which included a visit to the Open Air Museum where we had what I now say is the best cinnamon roll ever! and had some free time to walk about on our own.
We chose not to go to Berlin on this trip and instead took the morning to explore the town and area. It is a very quaint town with plenty of shopping nearby (I had to buy a Charger for my Camcorder as I'd left mine at home!) We had lunch at a nice little restaurant near the port. Excursion was to Wismar which is about an hour from Warnemunde if you like History this is definitely worth doing as we visited several old churches and sites and even got some time in a medieval pub! Our guide was a blast and even though we were supposed to have free time we ended up spending it in some churches and sites that were not part of the "tour" including the old hospital church. for the most part the town was fairly unscathed by the second world war and everyone was very welcoming and friendly!
The only reason I wont give Russia a 5 is because its a pain still as you have to be on a tour or excursion to gain entry (Visa's are required!). Imperial Russia at its very finest is St. Petersburg built in the late 1700's by Peter the Great it has a mix of some breathtaking Cathedrals and sites along with the modern life. Note: Some sites (Most ;) ) require a camera pass to take pictures inside. Hermitage is the site of the old Summer Palace and has one the finest collections or art in the world.
Our ship stopped in Nynashamn which is a tender port. Tendering was very easy and while we took the excursion up to Stockholm my in-laws stayed back in Nynashamn there is a hop on hop off bus in Nynashamn and shopping and dining.. Stockholm was one our top ports and we had plenty time on our own (about 4 hours) to explore and shop (I recommend the old town area as it seems less commercial and more homemade items and cultural based)
What can I say about Tallinn except wow just wow.... we opted not to take an excursion in Tallinn and did it on our own (very doable!) Tallinn has a Hop on Hop Off Bus that picks up by the pier and goes around Tallinn itself we took it to the top of the big hill and walked our way down taking it all in The old Town is separated by the gates of the old town from the new town and is very much worth spending the day in. When we were there was an open air market right by the pier! very much worth checking out!!