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Sail Date: April 2019
We got a Valentines offer on the website for the 2nd person to go for £199 and ended up with a room on floor 3 with 2 portholes and twin beds. The cabin was cosy and a bit noisy at night when the ship stopped, but with earplugs in we ... Read More
We got a Valentines offer on the website for the 2nd person to go for £199 and ended up with a room on floor 3 with 2 portholes and twin beds. The cabin was cosy and a bit noisy at night when the ship stopped, but with earplugs in we got used to this quickly and it kind of added to the experience. We were very lucky with weather and it was sunny and warm with calm seas almost the entire time. The food was excellent with the best buffet I’ve ever seen each breakfast and lunch, and at night a posh gourmet meal made by the chef. The dinner was made of local produce and had stories about where it was from and the suppliers, and one night there was fully vegetarian (which anyone could request a meat version). The boat had one long stop per day, and we decided not to do any paid excursions, but we’re really happy to find you could get off for up to 6 hours each day and hike up a mountain to see an incredible view and explore small towns. We hopped of at even the shortest stops and it was cool to see what they all had to offer. Tromsø and Trondheim were particular favourites. The views from the boat were spectacular and big points of interest along the way we’re announced on loudspeaker or there was an activity/talk with the expedition team out on the deck so you could take it in. We loved standing out the front and watching the boat wind through narrow bits especially at night when it didn’t seem like the sun went down fully. We even got taken to the mouth of the Trollfjord one evening, which was expertly manoeuvred so we could take in this famous landscape. There were lots of comfy places to sit indoors to watch it all go by too, although the swivel chairs right at the front were hotly contested. Sometimes the best view was in the jacuzzi at the back. Even when it was absolutely freezing and the coldest, the jacuzzi was shielded enough to take in the views while bubbling away. You could even sit above the tub and it was refreshing. Before the journey I was worried that not opting for the excursions would mean our experience wouldn’t be so great, and that our cabin would be tiny and confining. However I absolutely loved every minute and was sad to get off! Word to the wise - don’t bother rushing on at Bergen early. Your cabin is already decided and upgrading you can ask about on the ship for a price. You might as well check in around 6pm and enjoy Bergen a little longer. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
We have done a lot of cruises. We were aware that the Nordkapp is a working vessel and that it was going to be a lot less comfortable than a lot of other ships that is why we booked a attic superior cabin. When we arrived at the check in ... Read More
We have done a lot of cruises. We were aware that the Nordkapp is a working vessel and that it was going to be a lot less comfortable than a lot of other ships that is why we booked a attic superior cabin. When we arrived at the check in we had been downgraded to a polar outside. Because I am claustrophobic I jumped up and down to at least get a window. The cabin was the size of a railway compartment and the beds had to be folded into the walls so that we could get around the cabin during the day. Not good on a 12 days journey. The food was very ordinary. No choice for dinner. Only one option or vegetarian. Caters very much for European taste. Dried fish pickled vegetables etc. was sick twice in 12 days. The stops on the itinerary looked interesting but a lot o stops were only for 15 to 20 mins so could not get off. You have to pay for Tea and coffee other than meal times also for water and it is about $7 Aussie for each. The tours for a couple of hours range from $250 to $400 each and over for longer duration. We felt very ripped off and would suggest you look long and hard into this shipping line before choosing them. We did see the Northern Lights briefly and that is a plus. Also the scenery is magnificent and we did encounter VERY rough seas good luck fellow adventurer. Bev from Australia Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
I choose this cruise as it was apart of a bigger tour that I was on, the boat itself is pretty much as I expected from what I read and all the information I had received prior. I am not actually a cruise person I do not enjoy the big ... Read More
I choose this cruise as it was apart of a bigger tour that I was on, the boat itself is pretty much as I expected from what I read and all the information I had received prior. I am not actually a cruise person I do not enjoy the big boats as I feel you never have enough time on land to experience the country you are in. This cruise however was more for the scenery hence why I decided to give it a go. I went in the winter which means it is dark a lot of the time, I still really enjoyed the scenery and after the sun went down it was nice to sit in your room with all the lights of and enjoy the views. I booked a Artic superior room and for the difference in money between the rooms with out and window I would say it was the best thing I have done! It’s well worth the extra money and the window was bigger than what I expected and level 6 was a perfect spot. If you are on level 5 then people are able to see in your room while walking around the balcony so if you would like more privacy I would try requesting level 6. The food is amazing I am actually a vegan and they had plenty of food options for myself and if you eat everything you will be in heaven! The wait staff and general staff on the ship all seemed very nice and polite. I would 100% recommend a cruise ship with an expedition team, they made my trip 10x better then what it would have been with out them. You do have some down time on the ship with not much to do I would advise bringing a book or some card games or something that you enjoy doing to relax. If your ship has a spa GET IN IT when it’s snowing or just in down time it was the BEST. I pre booked some tours as I thought that would be cheaper all so to guarantee spots on the tour but booking on the ship the prices where much the same if not $10 AUD cheaper which you would loose with the exchange rate anyway. We seen the northern lights! Not as much as I expected but I only went North bound and the ship where very informative of when they where out HOWEVER... if you want to guarantee your time of not missing out I would seriously advise having your room temperature set a little cooler and sleeping in most of your clothing meaning all layers you need on except for your outer layers eg. big water proof jacket, pants and shoes! You waste to much time getting dressed and undressed and you miss them possibly so just sleep in everything without the blanket! There is NO entertainment on this ship which was completely fine for me as I’m not into all that but if you cruise a lot this cruise is different and a working ship, I don’t know how many times I was told/read this before getting on the ship and STILL I heard people complaining! This is not a bad thing the cruise was still AMAZING but please don’t expect and circus show or cabaret with 10 martini’s and never actually learning anything about the country you are visiting! The Expedition team did have a few things on each day inregards to information and learning about Norway I would recommend going to all of there sessions because they are fun and happy people with some great stories. Read Less
13 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
My mom and I very much enjoyed our Norwegian Coastal Voyage on Hurtigruten's MS Nordkapp during the winter months. The experience was relaxing and scenic - given the winter weather - the food was very good, and the staff was friendly. ... Read More
My mom and I very much enjoyed our Norwegian Coastal Voyage on Hurtigruten's MS Nordkapp during the winter months. The experience was relaxing and scenic - given the winter weather - the food was very good, and the staff was friendly. In writing this review, I'm mindful of shaping expectations for anyone interested in Hurtigruten's Norway Coastal Voyages, since I had a hard time finding the kind of reviews I was looking for. In the end, I would recommend it, and would even consider it again, but with some alterations, which I'll mention at the end. (Another disclaimer: this is only the second cruise I've taken. My first was in 1995 on Premier Cruise Lines Big Red Boat. I hated it. The ship wasn't all that nice, and I was bored. The food was amazing however.) We sailed from Bergen, which is a lovely if very rainy city. I would highly recomment a day exploring the Hanseatic Bryggen and the medieval fortress. You cannot board the ship until 4pm anyway, so you have plenty of time. You might also consider the fish market and a ride up the Floibannen (funicular). Unless you are travelling solo, you might be better off taking a taxi to the ship. Bergen is quite small, and you should be able to get a taxi for no more than 200 NOK, maybe less. The Hurtigruten shuttle, if not included in a hotel package, will cost 100 NOK per person, and you'll have to make multiple stops before reaching the terminal. Embarkation was quite easy. You check in your luggage and set up your cruise card with your personal credit card, then head upstairs and board at 4pm. There is a waiting area if you arrive before that time. Hurtigruten says you cannot access the cabins until 6:00pm, but I believe they made an announcement that they were available by 5:15pm or so. Most standard cabins are quite small. Remember: ferry line, not cruise line. They have two twin beds quite close to each other. The beds can be folded up against the wall during the day to provide seating. Superior cabins may have a double bed and a chair, and the mini-suites, which are twice as big as the other cabins, have a double bed plus a convertible sofa. Still, the rooms seem comfortable and functional. Hurtigruten is not a cruise line. It is a ferry line with a robust tourism business. That's an important distinction, because it shapes out Hurtigruten operates these voyages. While many cruise ships are often compared to floating resorts, Hurtigruten's ships are more like floating hotels, so they will lack the amenities and services found on larger cruise ships. Ferries with cruise ship-like amenities are pretty common in Northern Europe, but many people from other parts of the world may not be familiar with this kind of operation. For Hurtigruten, this means that the ships make many stops all along the Norwegian coast between Bergen in the southwest and Kirkenes in the northeast. While most of the passengers are tourists, many are Norwegians travelling from town to town, sometimes with cars and cargo. Some ports-of-call are only 15 minutes, but even the longest ones are only 3-4 hours rather than a full day. On the longer stops, you can choose from available excurisions, or simply walk about on your own (or sometimes visit a sister ship if it's in port with yours). We took several excursions, but on some stops of one hour we just took the chance to step off the ship and walk about the small towns. The Nordkapp is one of Hurtigruten's smaller ships, but most of the 11 ships that make the daily voyage up the coast are basically the same, differing only in size and a couple of amenities. For example, the Nordkapp takes max 590 passengers, while the MS Finnmarken can take 919. The Nordkapp has two jacuzzis, while the Finnmarken has a small pool (not so fun in the arctic winter). Only some ships have tailored activities for children. But generally, the common areas are more or less the same. The Nordkapp was renovated in 2016, and I found it to be quite nice and comfortable. The Nordkapp had a large lounge on the top deck in the forward part of the ship where passengers could sit and watch the scenery or read or chat in small groups. In the evening the bar opened and there was a lounge singer (not sure if every voyage has lounge entertainment). Also on the top deck midship was a cafe, designed in a "Norwegian coastal traditional style" that I really liked. We actually spent most time sitting here, since there was more light and the cafe sold coffee, pastries, sandwiches, and yummy ice cream (I did not try the dried fish ice cream, but the brunost - Norwegian brown cheese - ice cream was delish.) The restaurants are all on the 4th deck. The main dining restaurant was aft. Breakfast and lunch were buffet with a wide variety of foods, both hot and cold, while most dinners were a 3-course set menu. Hurtigruten will accommodate a wide array of dietary restrictions. Their cuisine approach is called Norway Coastal Kitchen, and they try to source local ingredients in the many ports of call as much as possible. The evening menu will always tell you where the local ingredients came from. This was a very nice touch.I thought the food was generally very high quality, even if I didn't personally like everything. Fish certainly appeared often, as did reindeer and lamb once or twice. The first evening is always a buffet, and since our first evening was Christmas Eve, we had a traditional Norwegian julebord, which was wonderful. There were also special 5-course menus for New Year's Eve and for the Hurtigruten 125th anniversary. There is also a fine-dining a la carte restaurant in Deck 4. Since our sailing over the Christmas holidays we had more buffets than most sailings, so we took advantage of this. The food was likewise very good and prepared to order. It is an extra charge over and above the main restaurant if you've purchased full board. Next to the fine dining restaurant is a quick-service restuarant with sandwiches, burgers, and pizza. This is also an additional charge. If you're already researching Norway you will already know this: booze is expensive. Hurtigruen offers a wine package that you must purchase on the first evening. If you and your travelling companion will share a bottle with dinner each evening, this may be a good option. You receive one bottle each evening with dinner, and you'll save some kroner. Since my mom and I drink different kinds of wine, we did not use this option. However, if you buy a bottle and don't finish it, they will keep it for you until the next day. Excursion planning is one area where I think Hurtigruten can improve the experience. It was quite cumbersome to figure out which ports were long enough to leave the ship on which days, and which excursions were offered in those ports. Basically, they count the days starting in Bergen with Day 1, and then they're numbered going north and then south from there. So any excursion on the website that is numbered 6a, 6b, etc. is on the 6th day of the cruise from Bergen. I ended up making my own spreadsheet, which should not have been necessary. The advantage of using the Hurtigruten-arranged excursions is exactly that the ships only stop a few hours at most, so if you are on a bus excursion, the ship will probably not sail without you if there's a delay. However, I do wish I had done better research up front to possiblye do my own activities. There is a great opportunity for an enterprising Norwegian techie to create short, self-guided walking tours on an app for Hurtigruten passengers! (I did find some Trondheim walking tours in an app call GPSmycity.) There are also some other shore activities that we did not know about until we were on the ship. Unfortunately, we had already pre-booked excursions and there were no refunds. Here is my suggestion regarding the excurions for winter voyages: pre-book the most popular excursions like dog-sledding and snowmobiling. Other excursions, wait and see, and book either the first night or the next day. Only a couple of excursions other than the dog-sledding filled up. Our hands-down favorite experience was the dog-sledding in Kirkenes on the frozen fjord. It included a visit to the Snowhotel. If you want to do this, pre-book! Two walking excursions were a mixed bag, and it was all to do with the guide. My walking tour in Trondheim definitely gave me a good, close look at the center part of the city, but the tour guide was not knowledgable at all. Our polar history walking tour in Tromso was excellent, largely due to a terrific and well-humoured guide. The Viking Dinner was very rushed, and since it was dark the scenery was impossible to see. Likewise the Marble Mine was an ok experience, but the drive along the famous Atlantic Road was completely hidden in the darkness. If you're in Bodo and you like beer and you, like me, notice that the Hundholmen Bryggeri only opens at 3pm which is when your ship sails, then you might, like me, take the chance of sending them an email and asking if they'll open early for you. It was one of the highlights of my trip! You should plan to be self-entertained on your Hurtigruten Norway Coastal Voyage. There was a lounge singer in the evenings on my voyage, and every day there was a short presentation called Get to Know Norway. We went to almost all of these and found them quite good. (Did you know Norway is shaped like a guitar?) Beyond that, given the short port time, you will have a lot of time on the ship. Bring a coupe of good books, or download some movies. Or, just enjoy the scenery and get to know your fellow passengers. Passengers come largely from Germany and the U.K., but there are also quite a few Americans, and a few South Africans and Australians. We enjoyed striking up conversations with people we met. A brief note: this may seem obvious, but Hurtigruten can't control the weather, and there were several excursions cancelled at various times because of weather. If you sail in rough weather, as we did (I have a great video us us sailing in a gale!), the ship might not even be able to stop in some ports. (Which was terribly inconvenient for those passengers who were using the ferry and not just on a longer voyage.) Also, while we had taken this trip in hopes of seeing the Northern Lights, the weather worked against us. There's not much you can do about that, so just understand that everything depends on good weather. (I suspect our experience was more exceptional in this.) Disembarkation in Bergen was smooth, if prolonged. You must leave your cabin by 10am, althoug the ship does not dock until 2:30pm. The ship disembarks by deck, so if your cabin is on Deck 6 you can disembark first. There was a very short wait for luggage, and a short wait for a taxi. It was late afternoon by the time we reached our hotel, so there was not much time for sightseeing at the end of the voyage. So, would I recommend it? Yes! Would I do it again? Yes, but with some changes. First of all, I would recommend only taking the 7-day northbound voyage. While the southbound voyage mostly stopped in different ports, they were not, for me, as interesting and compelling as the northbound ports. (The drive to the Marble Mine on the Atlantic Road - this is a southbound excursion - may have been spectacular in summer, but not in winter.) Also, while it was nice to unpack our bags just once, I would take advantage of the ferry schedule, and disembark in a few places for a couple of nights. I would stop in Trondheim, the Lofoten, and Tromso, at least, and stay in Kirkenes another day or two. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
Seen a lot and had great food. Never a bored moment. Nice meetings with the expedition team with interesting information and stories about Norway. Deck 6 Is a nice place for your cabin. On deck 5 you can walk around the hole ship and ... Read More
Seen a lot and had great food. Never a bored moment. Nice meetings with the expedition team with interesting information and stories about Norway. Deck 6 Is a nice place for your cabin. On deck 5 you can walk around the hole ship and people can look into your cabin. No luxury cruise things like swimming pools, big shows and entertainment but just the way I like it. Nice and easy relaxed atmosphere. The short stops in harbor’s are long enough to get a taste of that town. For some excursions you leave the ship in one town and board it in another town again. I loved the excursion to the marble mine. Very interesting to see how they work over there and deal with the changing demand of marble. You don’t have to do all the excursions. Some walks you can do on your own. The Hurtigrutten Museum is interesting manly because of the first ship that you can see there. Easy to get in contact with other travelers. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
ABSOLUTELY WONDERFUL. The ship, the crew and the service they provided and food were ALL fantastic. Impossible to overstate the quality of the crew, in particular the hotel, catering and restaurant staff. Well done to Jan Erik and the ... Read More
ABSOLUTELY WONDERFUL. The ship, the crew and the service they provided and food were ALL fantastic. Impossible to overstate the quality of the crew, in particular the hotel, catering and restaurant staff. Well done to Jan Erik and the head chef. Special dietary requirements were taken in the stride. All staff we met were fluent in English and apparently in German too. When I was told this is a 'working ship' running a local service along the Norwegian coast I expected a more basic standard of accommodation and overall experience; the long queue for check-in did not bode well, but I could not have been more wrong. The lounges were very comfortable and never too crowded. Already thinking about booking another voyage on Nordkapp. Cabin, not the most expensive by any means, was comfortable and perfectly satisfactory. The on-board presentations and briefings were very interesting and informative ... thanks to Eldrun and Marten; a few more on aspects of Norse culture, history and contemporary language would have been welcome. Or some short videos..? WiFi worked well enough. Sauna was fine; didn't use the jacuzzi or the fitness room. Only down-side was the on-board prices, e.g. drinks at the bar and cost of the shore excursions, probably reflecting the high cost of living in Norway generally. Choose the shore excursions carefully as many seemed to involve several hours on a coach/bus. More opportunities for self-guided trips would be good but it must be acknowledged that this would jeopardise the tight timetable of port calls. This was our first cruise holiday and it ticked all of the boxes; Northern Lights, sea eagles, huskies, reindeer and of course the dramatic scenery. What's not to like??? Read Less
Sail Date: October 2018
A great trip for geographer - fjords, northern most point in mainland Europe, crossing the arctic circle and northern lights. Great ship, i was in one of the non-refurbished rooms but that wasn't an issue, they were all clean and ... Read More
A great trip for geographer - fjords, northern most point in mainland Europe, crossing the arctic circle and northern lights. Great ship, i was in one of the non-refurbished rooms but that wasn't an issue, they were all clean and well cared for. i liked being able to not have it cleaned and the money going to the Hurtigruten foundation for conservation work. Food was great, plenty of it and a wide variety to cater for all tastes. Breakfast and lunch were buffet style, the range and quality of food was amazing. A set evening dinner was lovely and sitting in the same seat was good as we got to know those at the next table and the waiting staff. Having an expedition team on board was great and well worthwhile, with updates on the trips the next day to getting to know Norway. There is no 'entertainment', and it was great, watching the world go by. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
Like to see coast and fjords of Norway, North Cape and like to travel with a special type of cruiseship (more a ferryboat than a cruiseship). Organisation was perfect. Hurtigruten offers to skip cleaning the cabin, therefor 5 NOK ... Read More
Like to see coast and fjords of Norway, North Cape and like to travel with a special type of cruiseship (more a ferryboat than a cruiseship). Organisation was perfect. Hurtigruten offers to skip cleaning the cabin, therefor 5 NOK will be payed to hurtigruten foundation - great idea. Dining concept is great: Breakfast and lunch as buffet, dinner served. Expedition team offers a lot of Information in form of activities on board and on land, as well in form of show/theater. Team for serving meals and fill the buffet, and the cook as well were excelent. While traveling the coast of Norway, weather can change quickly and you not allways have best conditions to take pictures or see all of the landscape, but this is very authentic for this area. The team is very good informed, we allways felt that they like the job and during the cruise one is gettzig closer to team members in the way, that passengers become something like a part of the crewfamily. Read Less
11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
I thought I would see fjords and magnificent landscapes on board a ship with interesting things to do. What I got was endless rocks and low cliffs and certainly no fjords or anything interesting on the ship except really expensive a la ... Read More
I thought I would see fjords and magnificent landscapes on board a ship with interesting things to do. What I got was endless rocks and low cliffs and certainly no fjords or anything interesting on the ship except really expensive a la carte items and beverages and outlandishly expensive excursions, none of which I took. With only rare exceptions all the other passengers were old people traveling as couples or in big French groups. It wasn't too long before I realized I didn't belong. My table mates at dinner even told me I didn't belong there ( I boarded at a port later in the cruise than they). The food was good and most of the staff was friendly. But you know how it is on cruises...one always has the feeling that nothing is genuine. I honestly couldn't tell. The interesting ports were timed particularly badly such that on arrival most tourist sites( churches, museums) were closed...and in smaller ports, you literally get no more than 30-45 minutes. A terrific waste of money! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2018
Excellent trip, all staff were friendly, chatty and ready to answer any question anytime. The food was excellent with great variety. I am Coeliac and my needs were met excellently. The expedition team of Elizabeth and Marie definitely ... Read More
Excellent trip, all staff were friendly, chatty and ready to answer any question anytime. The food was excellent with great variety. I am Coeliac and my needs were met excellently. The expedition team of Elizabeth and Marie definitely added to my enjoyment of trip. They were great always bubbly when dealing with guests. I opted for an upgrade on day one and felt I got good value there. Only downside of trip was the dirty windows in the Explorer bar as it was designed to take in the wonderful panorama of the fjords. Nobody wants photos with streaks of dirt. The captain announced when the Northern lights were visible this was great as it was in the night so guests could go out to see them. Overall I would highly recommend this trip to young and old and there were a variety of each on board. I hope to travel this same route again in a different season. Read Less
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