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Home > Member Reviews > Harrisontig31's Port Reviews of Rostock (Warnemunde), St. Petersburg, Helsinki, Stockholm

Harrisontig31's Port Reviews of Rostock (Warnemunde), St. Petersburg, Helsinki, Stockholm
Marco Polo cruise in September 2012
Member Name: Harrisontig31
Cruise Date: September 2012
Embarkation: other
Destination: Baltic & Northern Europe
Member Review: Harrisontig31's Marco Polo Review
Rostock (Warnemunde)
Port Rating: Not Rated
I knew nothing of Warnemunde before arriving and am glad because had I done so, I would probably gone with everyone else to Berlin.

As it is, Berlin is probably worthy of a few days and not top of my list but Warnemunde was a revelation. It is a stylish, sweet, charming place, sort of caught in a time warp. It is so clean! The beach is wonderful and goes on for miles.

As you follow the beachside promenade, it turns into a foot/bridle path after about half a mile, and this path goes on for about 4 miles, through pretty woodland. There is a pretty Hotel on the Cliffside, rather Swiss in appearance with a verandah that hangs over the beach with views back to Warnemunde and over the sea.

I would have liked to visit Rostock which was easily accessible on the train from Warnemunde but I just ran out of time and walked about 4 miles instead.

Try the smoked fish on sale at many waterside kiosks here, the Butter fish is delicious.

Access to and from the mooring is flat and about 400m walk from the ship to the town centre.

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St. Petersburg
Catherine Palace Rating: 4.0 out of 5+
Beautiful interior. But an exhibition really only of architecture and interior design, little to show how the Palace was used unlike in the Peterhoff which has staged rooms.


City Tour Rating: 4.0 out of 5+
Very interesting, plenty of information provided by the guide. Sufficient time spent at photo stops. Didnt change my previous opinion that there is a certain non physical coldness clouding the whole of the place but glad I have been to experience it for myself. Many beautiful pastel painted and decorated building but many more grey utilitarian looking buildings.


Neva River Cruise Rating: 5.0 out of 5+
Despite cold and earlier rain the sun came out and makes the whole place look totally different. Good information provided on the boat along with blankets!! Nice variety of things to see on the Neva and the side canals. Very pleasant tour to take.


Peter & Paul Fortress Rating: 4.0 out of 5+
Interesting. Strange in its layout. Again, one of the places you have to visit if only to see the resting place of all the Tsars. I felt the tour here was a bit disjointed but this was primarily because of numbers visiting the church and then a wait for our onward river cruise boat to arrive.


Peterhof Palace Rating: 5+ out of 5+
Peterhoff is just one of those places you have to visit if you are into Architecture, Culture and History. It is stunning. The interior is breathtaking and the gardens extensive and very pretty. I particularly like the canal from the main fountains down to the sea and the seaside "villa".


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Helsinki
Port Rating: Not Rated
Convenient mooring, 400m walk to the town centre. I like to walk and explore on my own and covered a fairly large area but felt, whilst it was a perfectly pleasant town, it was a bit boring. It just "was". The highlight for me is the Old Market Hall...really interesting and photogenic and a couple of nice cafes there.

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Stockholm
Port Rating: Not Rated
My opinion of Stockholm is sadly tainted because I had my mobile phone and some money stolen here!

A city tour is a necessity because the ship moores a long way from the centre of the city. YOu can sort your own transport into town but the cost of the tour is not much more than the ferry cost so it makes for better value.

The city has lots of trees which look beautiful at this time of year, loads of colour inbetween the blocks of buildings. Attractive architecture particularly in the old town which are tall wharf warehouse style buildings.

The tour takes you around the Embassy and affluent housing areas too, very attractive. Lots of green arteries.

The Vasa Museum was included on our tour and I hadnt known what it was until I entered the building. It is incredible!!!! and warrants at least half a day wandering round and reading on your own...which sadly we didnt have. This ship is stunningly beautiful and the story behind it interesting and humorous.

Sadly, because of my personal experience, my plan to return will be put further down the list...but I learnt a hard lesson and still am not entirely sure how it happened.

The Museum is half light owing to the nature of the atmosphere it has to protect for the sake of the ship. I am normally the most security conscious person but stupidly had my rucksack on my back. Some clever thief managed to get my mobile phone out of a side zipped pocket of my rucksack. After discussion with my companions we can only think that the person then targeted me to where I paid for a drink in the cafe, saw where I replaced my purse..deep in my rucksack! and then stole all the Kroner notes out of my purse when we were seated in the cafe about 32 pounds worth. So watch out! The Vasa Museum is fantastic but it is the ideal place for thieves to operate...because of the half light, the security cameras, if there are some, would have a very poor recording!

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