We booked this cruise to travel with friends who had never been to Norway. The first thing to be very aware of is that once you book, there are no cancellations allowed without losing your large deposit. No exceptions, even if it’s more than a year in advance. Also, before you book - be aware that the ship only stops once a day in a port long enough to actually get off the ship. And then it will be for only 2 or at the very most 3 hours. This only allows you to book Hurtigruten’s very expensive excursions; otherwise all you have time to do is walk around. This is NOT like a conventional cruise where you are in a port all day. There are too many passengers and not enough chairs in public spaces. Good luck on finding a place to sit, other than on the bed in your cabin. I would never travel on Hurtigruten again, based on my experience. It is not a good value, and I had a much more enjoyable cruise on a conventional cruise line.
A basic cabin, with the advantage of twin beds and one that folded into a couch. Somewhere to sit! A rarity on this ship- unfortunately we spent a lot of time in our cabin since there were rarely chairs available in the public areas.
Breakfast and lunch were served buffet with open seating. You will probably have to queue for both. The buffets were copious and the food was tasty. There was a great deal of similarity from one day to the next. For dinner you will have an assigned time 6:00 or 8:00. They will assign you table mates that you will be with for the entire cruise. Dinners were served as 3 courses and the food was good to very good. There is a casual cafe where you can purchase meals, mostly used by the day trippers who are using the ship as a ferry. There is also an ala carte restaurant with an up-charge of from 290 NOK to 890 NOK. Its a smaller venue with white tablecloths and probably better service. We couldnt justify the extra charge so did not partake. The dining room service was good, although not personal in any way. There are no activities aboard. Once per day there is a 30 minute presentation just before dinner, pertaining to the next day. Some days, the ship will pass a point if interest that they will give a narrative about on deck 7 aft. The problem is that there are so many people out on this small deck that we could never get close enough to see what was happening. People were standing on chairs along the rail to try to catch a glimpse. My advice is to bring a lot of books or knitting or something to occupy the time. Wifi was included and was fairly fast. The coffee and tea package is good for filter coffee (which we found to be bitter and acidic) from the machine or tea only. Barista drinks are available for an extra charge. Water is served at meals, but to drink water any other time you will need to get it from the bathroom tap in your cabin. Otherwise they sell water in plastic bottles. Service at Reception was generally curt or unemotional, and we were given different answers to the same questions depending on who we asked. I cant comment on the Excursions team since we didnt buy any tours. Our cabin on deck 3 turned out to be more desirable than our friends cabin on deck 5, for several reasons. We had twin beds, and one folded into a sofa during the days providing a much needed place to sit. Their queen size bed consumed the entire cabin. Also, our window, although always dirty, had a private view. On deck 5, there are always people standing or walking outside your window.