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Finnmarken Cruise Review
4.0 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
68 Reviews

Northern Lights and Arctic Norway by Ship

Finnmarken Cruise Review by arctic ozzies

4 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: Jan 2019
  • Destination: the British Isles & Western Europe

I recently went on the Hurtigrutem MS Finnmarken for an 11 night cruise from Bergen to Kirkenes and then back to Bergen, stopping at 34 ports. It was amazing, the scenery and excursions offered were fantastic.

The ship while a little tired looking and not a luxury cruise liner, was clean and the staff very friendly and helpful. I shared a outside basic cabin with my Mother and although we had portholes instead of windows, we coped fine. The cabin did have a bar fridge, but we didn't use it.

The food was abundant, fresh, and well stocked with local delicacies. For those of us not familiar with the offerings or with food intolerances/ allergies, dishes were reasonably well labelled. Each night dinner showcased food from the local area. If you weren't keen on eating cod tongues or Rudolph the Reindeer, you could request an alternative (usually fish or beef).

Excursions were plentiful and while expensive (it's Norway and everything is expensive) were well paced with abundant information from local guides and bus drivers. If the excursions didn't appeal then there were the options of taking yourself for a walk through the towns you dock at, or just sitting in the lounge and watching the ship be loaded and unloaded. Daily review talks by the expedition team, as well as a few activities such as a ceremony when crossing the arctic circle and guided hikes, provided pretty much all of the ship's entertainment. There were no cabarets or night shows.

While the weather was bad for the majority of our trip, cloudy skies and at times rough seas (when in the open water), you soon got used to the ships motion. When the Northern Lights made their appearances - announcements were made so you could go out on deck and admire the spectacle. This was the cherry on the very top of the experience and not seeing them would still have meant a fantastic trip.

As a once in a lifetime trip, the Arctic and the Northern Lights cruise didn't disappoint and I'd recommend this trip.

arctic ozzies's Full Rating Summary
Onboard Experience
Enrichment Activities
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Shore Excursions
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Cabin Review

Cabin polar outside 308

The cabin was large enough for 2 people with storage space for 2 suitcases. There was plenty of storage space. One bed was made up into a sofa each day, and made in to a bed at night. The cabin was basic with no tv, but the ensuite bathroom was clean and had great water pressure. The cabin had a safe and a small fridge.

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

City Tour

This tour started early int he morning (7.45am) which in January is still very dark. We had a narrated tour of the city and then went to a lookout and watched the sun rise before heading to the cathedral. Doing this tour on the southbound journey provides less time than doing it on the northbound journey, but was still very good.

View All 21 City Tour Reviews

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arctic ozzies
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