My attempt at a more objective and comprehensive review of Oceania Nautica:
ITINERARY – London to Stockholm, 14 nights 1 sea days, 3 nights at St Petersburg - an excellent itinerary.
• This is a port intensive cruise visiting major cities like, Berlin, Helsinki and Copenhagen, Stockholm, St Petersburg whilst also visiting quieter destinations such as Kristiansand, Klapeida, Tallinn, Karlskrona, Riga (listed in order of increasing preference).
ROOMS – Very neatly appointed, the smaller bathroom meant a larger ratio of living space.
• The showers are small but have been told they will refurbish in the near future.
• The cabin is kept clean and stewardess Rosario was nice. I personally like the current bed style a lot and find the new design of the proposed refurbishment a bit tacky.
• The bed and pillows are very comfortable, probably the best I have had at sea.
Stockholm – we left early, but our brief stay was welcomed by friendly locals, cute shops, pretty old town to stroll around. I will need to come back to see more. I liked the sailing into stockholm via the archipelagos.
Casual stroll to soak in sun and Norwegian laid back lifestyle. Walk along the dock and ocean towards the centre. There is a park with good view of the city that is recommended.
- Lots to see in 1 day so plan well. Start going to Kronborg castle by train, then back to the city to stroll through the trivoli garden amusement park, go to the Rosenborg palace and see the beautiful palace artefacts with the Danish Crown, Christianborg if have time (we didn’t), walk to Nyhvn for the postcode pictures with massive crows and finish up at the little mermaid statue near the port (afternoon is better to see this due to sunlight, morning = bad photo and backlit).
Tip: maybe get a copehagen card, which is expensive, some train stations are hard to navigate.
Berlin on your own - shuttle bus, but no aircon on the way back in 35 degree heat. That is just bad luck. We encountered scammers so mind your bags. Walked around the major sites. If had more time I would check out the palaces outside the city. I felt Berlin had lots of history, but personally have enjoyed other cities more.
Riga: Amazing architecture all around in the old town, beautiful cafes, intricate details on Art Noveau style buildings (so much better than modern apartments), little markets, and traditional alleyways. Because we docked early in the morning, hardly anyone on the street – perfect photo moments. Beautiful old town that is easy walk from the port, thumbs up.
Took a Ferry to Curonian Spit, which is an amazing stretch of sand habitat over 50km long. However those postcard photos are not visible on the ground level, recommend drones. Old town of Kaipeda is a quick walk around and easy to navigate. Lots of cobblestones… I personally liked Riga more.
Medieval architecture that is beautiful, I loved the city wall and the iconic towers with orange domes. This is a very walkable city, a tour will give you more history and context but definitely easily doable on your own. The downside – too many tourists and very crowded.
Helsinki – small ship is good for Baltic – docked in the centre of the town with great views. Walked around and had a good day out. Don’t recommend the rock church…. But I recommend looking around the alleyways and see some of the local shops, museums and art.