Nordlys Review

Challenging to book what I wanted

Review for the British Isles & Western Europe Cruise on Nordlys
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First Time Cruiser • Age 60s

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Sail Date: Oct 2021
Tasting traditional Norwegian food on deck 7
My cabin
Shower room in my cabin

I sailed on this ship on 11th October but only for four nights between Bergen and Tromso. Booking was the first challenge. Although the Nordlys is part of the Hurtigruten group and used by local people in Norway to travel between small ports up and down the coast, in the UK the website seems intent on only allowing you to book an 11 night sailing (Bergen to North Cape and return). I had to phone the customer centre in Norway to book my four nights, and booking this way means that the price is broken down so you pay for the travel, then the cabin, then meals, choosing whether you pay for one, two or three meals each day. This is quite costly overall, and Hurtigruten do seem intent on adding on all the costs, i.e. although there was tea and coffee and a kettle in my room when I boarded, this was not refreshed at all, meanwhile the coffee and tea points that are on the 4th and 7th deck are only available to people who pay a one off fee for a package of tea/coffee for the 11 nights. There did not seem to be a cheaper option for people to just pay for 4 nights. Also for UK customers, there is no milk supplied in the cabin with the tea and coffee, just two small packets of powdered coffee creamer.

The staff on board were all polite and helpful and welcoming, particularly the restaurant staff. Another good point on this ship (and possibly on all the Hurtigruten ships) was that there was a launderette on the 3rd deck, which as I am spending time travelling round Norway, was most useful.

I have never been on a cruise, and I understand that the Hurtigruten are atypical in that although there are optional excursions on land (for which extra is paid) there is no real entertainment on board. The explorer team did a daily lecture at about 9 pm on various topics, but the fact that these are delivered in Norwegian, English and occasionally French simultaneously makes these quite lengthy.

Cabin Review

The cabin was on deck 5. There is a walkway on deck 5 which allows people to do an entire circuit of the boat, which is a bit disconcerting as you have people wandering past the window at various times. The cabin was fine, the bed was very comfortable and I opted not to have the cabin serviced as I was only on board for 4 nights, so did not need clean linen or towels. The bed was very comfortable with two large and two smaller pillows. The heating in the cabin was easy to control and very responsive. The shower was warm, hot and strong and because the floor in the shower room was heated, any overspill from the shower evaporated very quickly.

The TV had two English language channels - BBC news and CNN. However Norwegian TV often shows programmes in English with Norwegian subtitles. I believe WiFi is available but did not sign up for this as I had good 4G reception for most of the journey.

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