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  #1  
Old August 29th, 2011, 04:41 PM
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Rambo1985 Rambo1985 is offline
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Default Balcony - Antarctic

I am looking at doing a cruise to the antarctic, i am undecided whether to get an ocean view or pay the extra for a balcony.

Any thoughts on if it would be worth it?
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September 2007 - Thomson Spirt (med)
December 2007 - Celebrity Infinity (south America)
October 2008 - Ocean Village 2 (med)
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September 2011 - Ocean Countess (Ireland)
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Old August 29th, 2011, 07:32 PM
cnbfrank cnbfrank is offline
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On our Jan 2011 Veendam we were in a DA oceanview cabin on Main deck. It was a great location near the rear stairs and elevator - one quick flight up to the open Promenade Deck, or walk back along the corridor and up one flight to the rear promenade deck so you could see both port and starboard sights.

We never heard any noise from walkers on the deck above, except a pounding the first morning. My husband came back down to tell me someone was using "walking poles" vigorously -never heard them again, so I imagine there may have been complaints.

We did not have much rough weather, but appreciated the low and midships location when we did. And watching penguins and seals float by on icebergs at almost eye level was priceless!
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  #3  
Old August 30th, 2011, 02:55 PM
pke-atlanta pke-atlanta is offline
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Personally, I think it would be worth the extra to go on an expedition ship for a real close-up of the wildlife. Assuming you are NOT talking about that kind of trip, though, yes I think the balcony would be worth it. so that you can be as close to the wildlife as possible.

We did the Silver Explorer and were absolutely amazed. If you can handle light to moderate exercise, I'd really encourage you to consider an expedition ship.
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Old August 31st, 2011, 08:03 AM
h2so4 h2so4 is offline
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As much time as I spent on the outside decks (we were on an expedition ship), I would definitely pay for a balcony were I to go on a big ship ... worth every penny to pop out and enjoy the fantastic landscape at will ... and even bundle up and sit outside and watch the scenery slide by.
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Old August 31st, 2011, 02:11 PM
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Thanks for the advice. I've booked a balcony for the celebrity cruise in feb 2013. I thought if I didn't book a balcony I might regret it when I get there
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Antarctic Cruise (Feb 2016)

Previous Cruises

September 2007 - Thomson Spirt (med)
December 2007 - Celebrity Infinity (south America)
October 2008 - Ocean Village 2 (med)
September 2010 - Celebrity Mercury (Alaska)
September 2011 - Ocean Countess (Ireland)
November 2011- Independance of the seas (med)
October 2012 - adventure of the seas (canaries)
November 2012 - celebrity solstice (dubai-singapore)
September 2014 - Oasis of the seas (transatlantic)
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  #6  
Old August 31st, 2011, 09:03 PM
h2so4 h2so4 is offline
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have a terrific time ... you're going to a very special part of the world
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  #7  
Old April 21st, 2012, 11:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rambo1985 View Post
Thanks for the advice. I've booked a balcony for the celebrity cruise in feb 2013. I thought if I didn't book a balcony I might regret it when I get there

I have booked an aft AQ balcony cabin for our 2014 Antarctic cruise with Celebrity too. I am really looking forward to this once in a lifetime cruise. But some posters seem look down on this large ship cruising as "sail by" cruise, implied it is not really consider an Antarctic cruise. Well, to me "sail by" cruising is better than not cruising to this part of the world.

Ricky
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  #8  
Old April 22nd, 2012, 05:55 AM
digitl digitl is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ricky Chan View Post
I have booked an aft AQ balcony cabin for our 2014 Antarctic cruise with Celebrity too.
Personally, I would not book a balcony for this type of cruise but would put the extra cost towards an expedition cruise. Whenever there was anything to see on our Fram trip we were on deck and moving around to get the very best view on whichever side of the ship was most appropriate rather than being static in one location.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ricky Chan View Post
Well, to me "sail by" cruising is better than not cruising to this part of the world.
That's true, but an expedition trip takes the experience to a whole new level.

Standing amongst penguins, seals, birds and a whole lot of other wildlife, being able to watch them close-up for as long as you want, having them approach you so they're right by your side, having dolphins accompany your landing boat to the shore, all of that is so special that it makes every £ spent on getting there a £ well spent. So much so that we're going again in 2014.
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  #9  
Old April 22nd, 2012, 11:56 AM
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Default Sail by on large cruise ship

Going on an expedition ship would have been very cool, but the fact is the price keeps many of us from being able to afford this type of trip. One person is 10-12k for an 11 day basic trip with shared room. For that same money one takes the family on a 14 day drive by, sure landing on AA is probably wonderful but the fact I can experience AA with my family means more... Just one's opinion......
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  #10  
Old April 22nd, 2012, 12:50 PM
surfsidemary surfsidemary is offline
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I was just on such a cruise in February. I had an ocean view cabin on the Lower Promenade deck, which worked out perfectly. The weather was uncomfortable and very foggy most of the time (3 days), so I spent many pleasant hours seated at my window in my warm, dry, and windless cabin. If I had a veranda, I would still have been looking out the window, not sitting in the weather.

The commentator was on the TV and would let us know when something interesting was coming up. This was particularly helpful if it was to be on the other side of the ship. So easy to throw on my outerwear and pop out to the open deck to get a better look and some atmosphere for a few minutes at a time.
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  #11  
Old April 22nd, 2012, 10:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TMas777 View Post
Going on an expedition ship would have been very cool, but the fact is the price keeps many of us from being able to afford this type of trip. One person is 10-12k for an 11 day basic trip with shared room. For that same money one takes the family on a 14 day drive by, sure landing on AA is probably wonderful but the fact I can experience AA with my family means more... Just one's opinion......

Agree whole heartly, cost of going on an expedition ship is just way out of my affordable range. That is why I settle on Celebrity new Infinity aft AQ cabin where we can step out into balcony with a panorama view of the scenery. I guess having a "sail by" cruise is better than no sail by at all.

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Old April 22nd, 2012, 10:36 PM
Janet92 Janet92 is offline
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We never heard any noise from walkers on the deck above, except a pounding the first morning.

Last edited by Janet92; April 22nd, 2012 at 10:36 PM.
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  #13  
Old April 23rd, 2012, 06:14 AM
digitl digitl is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TMas777 View Post
One person is 10-12k for an 11 day basic trip with shared room.
I just checked Hurtigruten's site and cabins are 'from' US$6200 (converted from £) for their 10 day 'classic' trip, though the lowest I could see was ~US$6900.

Still not inexpensive, but a lot less than US$10 - 12000.
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  #14  
Old April 23rd, 2012, 11:45 AM
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Default Math

Add airfare, taxes, tips and then do the math...... Airfare (2k), taxes, tips and added spending money (1k)..... =10k. Or pretty close... Single room? Or shared? If I could do it with just my wife it will be well over our budget, drive by with my 13 yr. old son, wife and myself is 11k total. I would rather experience a drive by with my family than a solo expedition cruise... We all have choices in life and that's mine...
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  #15  
Old April 23rd, 2012, 12:24 PM
digitl digitl is offline
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I have done the maths: I have done the trip.

However, I responded to your post with prices because you gave the impression that the cabin cost US$10 - 12000 and I didn't want anyone put off looking at an expedition cruise because they had seen what appeared to be an inflated price. Even with air fares and incidentals added, your estimate is still on the high side. Take into account Hurtigruten's usual 10% early booking and 5% repeat booking discounts and it is even further out.

You are right to say we all have choices to make, and I alluded to that previously when I agreed with Ricky Chan's assertion that '"sail by" cruising is better than not cruising to this part of the world'. That said, there's nothing wrong with passing on personal experiences to help others make an informed decision.
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  #16  
Old April 25th, 2012, 02:37 AM
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I guess the way I look at it is you can "see" something, or you can "experience" something.

You can look up from the ground and "see" a hot air balloon and think "wow thats pretty" - or you could be in that hot air balloon "experiencing" it.

You can be in a big overcrowded cruise ship and float past Antarctica and "see" it.

Or you can be in a smaller expedition vessel and go ashore and hang out with the penguins and "experience" it.

Personal choice for some and budgetry choice for others.

But I know for me the idea of just driving by would never satisfy me.
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  #17  
Old April 30th, 2012, 11:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rambo1985 View Post
Thanks for the advice. I've booked a balcony for the celebrity cruise in feb 2013. I thought if I didn't book a balcony I might regret it when I get there
Rambo 1985;
Try these to get you in the mood.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K2IKEZEnvcs&feature=plcp

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kpPioIDKDpE&feature=plcp

I hope you get to go ashore on one of the islands. Brown's landing is Antarctica Mainland.

http://www.cruisemates.com/gallery/view.php?id=5238

http://www.cruisemates.com/gallery/view.php?id=5242

I wish I hadn't worn my automatic dimming glasses. Not only the glare dims them, but so does the cold. They got so dark, I couldn't see at times.
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  #18  
Old May 1st, 2012, 08:45 AM
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BORDER REIVER BORDER REIVER is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ricky Chan View Post
I have booked an aft AQ balcony cabin for our 2014 Antarctic cruise with Celebrity too. I am really looking forward to this once in a lifetime cruise. But some posters seem look down on this large ship cruising as "sail by" cruise, implied it is not really consider an Antarctic cruise. Well, to me "sail by" cruising is better than not cruising to this part of the world.

Ricky
I believe you did the right thing by booking a balcony cabin. We sailed on a big ship to Greenland, Iceland and Norway and mostly we spent time up on deck, going from side to side to see all the scenery in what was beautiful weather. However, it was wonderful to be able to get straight out of bed on a clear Arctic morning, go onto the balcony with a cup of tea and watch icebergs glide past in the blue waters, as well as view towering mountains and glaciers. The balcony was also convenient when we were relaxing before dinner in the evenings, just being able to have a look outside and take photos, rather than having to keep going up on deck. A balcony is also good for port days as you can relax in your own space and watch all that is going on.
I also fully understand why others would want an expedition type cruise. We were able to leave the ship in Greenland and enjoy a trip on a local boat, right up the fjords at speed, to view mountains, glaciers and icebergs close-up. It certainly gave us a taste for adventure, and our Antarctic trip will be on an expedition ship.
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