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Live/Silver Cloud: Norway Coast/Fjords July 1-16 Reports


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Hi Terry, Glad you're still posting. Agree with all in your latest except the comment about Tivoli. We found it drab and dated.

 

Appreciate the nice follow-up, encouragement and comments from newlondon. Not sure when you visited Tivoli. We have been there twice. Late July 2008 on a wonderful Sunday afternoon. Loved it, lots of activity, people, music, gardens, flowers, etc. Then, we did an evening visit in late June 2010 before starting our Norway adventure. Also, totally wonderful, especially the music, lights, architectural variety/class, water features, etc. We didn't do the rides. Too old to do that, plus been there and done that earlier at other better such parks in the U.S. Below are just two of my magical memories/pictures. Clearly, good and smart people can have varied likes and dislikes. Don't know if you visited Tivoli either before or after our visits there. Maybe things were different then and/or more recently.

 

Arriving this weekend was the latest edition of National Geographic Traveler. Its cover feature is all about Copenhagen. This feature profile spreads over eleven full pages with their usual great visuals and many other details on this wonderful city. The text details many recent changes (for the good) in this charming city where design and style are important. The author calls it a "textured city" that is rich in history and context.

 

A key subhead on this Danish capital is "Not surprisingly, the seven-day-a-week economy hasn't made it to Copenhagen." That was meant in a very good way. If you have an upcoming trip planned for Copenhagen, it is worth seeking out a copy to soak up the insights from this comprehensive profile. Or, if you love this town as we do, it is like a great re-run for one of your favorite TV classics.

 

THANKS! Enjoy! Terry in Ohio

 

Copenhagen: Why Walking Back to the Ship Is Super Great!!!!

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=975779

 

For details and visuals, etc., from our July 1-16, 2010, Norway Coast/Fjords/Arctic Circle cruise experience from Copenhagen on the Silver Cloud, check out this posting. This posting is now at 120,052 views.

http://www.boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1227923

 

 

Below is the National Geographic Traveler November 2013 cover featuring Copenhagen under the headline of "The Sweet Danish Life. Copenhagen: Cool, Creative, Carefree." Second is a dramatic two-page visual for the interior of their new and modern Opera House with its great location on the water and across from the Royal Palaces.:

 

DSC_1063CopenhageOpHouseInterior_zps09e1ae42.jpg

 

 

DSC_1064CopenhageOpHouseInterior_zps7aede994.jpg

 

 

At Tivoli, their main gate is lighted in a spectacular and welcoming manner. Walt Disney was inspired in 1950 to construct Disneyland after visiting this park in the heart of Copenhagen. Tivoli opened in 1843 and encompasses eight hectares with 1,000 trees and 400,000 summer flowers planted throughout the gardens. It boasts upwards of 40 restaurants, a Chinese-style pantomime theater, open-air concert stage, amusement park and Denmark’s longest salt-water aquarium. In the evening, the park is lighted up with Chinese lanterns, multi-colored lights, etc. That truly makes it a “Magic Kingdom” to make Disney happy. Website at: tivoligardens.com.:

 

TivoliGateNight.jpg

 

 

Tivoli looks so special at night with its famed building designs, water features, gardens, flowers, rides, people, entertainment, etc.:

 

TivoliJapHseLake.jpg

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Hi Terry,

Thanks so much for the beautiful pictures. This is an itinerary I have long longed to do and behold next July will finally get to do it on the Symphony. I showed some of your pictures to my granddaughter (age 8) who I'm taking with me (along with her parents and older brother) and she was mesmerized by them. Can't wait.

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Hi Terry, Thanks so much for the beautiful pictures. This is an itinerary I have long longed to do and behold next July will finally get to do it on the Symphony. I showed some of your pictures to my granddaughter (age 8) who I'm taking with me (along with her parents and older brother) and she was mesmerized by them. Can't wait.

 

Appreciate from our Connecticut friend your kind comments. Glad your granddaughter is so smart and liked the pictures. "Mesmerized" is a great word. We sailed on the Crystal Symphony in 2008 for the Baltics and Russia. Loved the ship with its many options, great staff and food, etc.

 

I looked at your detailed port schedule and it's wonderful that you will be sailing from super charming Copenhagen. Such a wonderful location. For Hellesylt/Geiranger, consider the "Roof of Norway" option or whatever they will call it. That's a great chance to see more "upcountry" and a wider variety of sights and natural wonders. We have not been to Alta, Kristiansand and Skagen. But we have visited all of your other stops, including really enjoying our time in the Lofoten Island.

 

Let me know any added questions about your various stops. Don't be shy!! Have you been on the Symphony previously?

 

THANKS! Enjoy! Terry in Ohio

 

Did a June 7-19, 2011, Celebrity Solstice cruise from Barcelona that had stops in Villefranche, ports near Pisa and Rome, Naples, Kotor, Venice and Dubrovnik. Enjoyed great weather and a wonderful trip. Dozens of wonderful visuals with key highlights, tips, comments, etc., on these postings. We are now at 144,153 views for this live/blog re-cap on our first sailing with Celebrity and much on wonderful Barcelona. Check these postings and added info at:

http://www.boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1426474

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  • 2 weeks later...

From the November 2013 edition of National Geographic that just arrived at our home today, they have a major story/profile on "Norway's Otherworldly Coast". There are thirteen page of wonderful visuals. Among some of the highlights, it notes: "Journey to the heart of Norway. Follow the water. Taken all in all, south to north, the coast of Norway may be the most complex land edge on the planet. In 2011 Norwegian geographers completed a three-year project to recalculate the length of their coastline. Using new techniques and better maps, they added thousands of islands and islets that had never been included in the total before. In all, Norway’s measured seashore grew by some 11,000 miles. If you hammered Norway’s 63,000 miles of fjords, bays, and island shores into a single line, it would circle the planet two and a half times. All that in a country less than 1,100 miles from south to north. "

 

Here is a another key segment from this story with good insights for this amazing part of the world: "To travel the Norwegian coast is to glimpse an endless discontinuity between land and water, the restless inventiveness of eons of ice. Miles inland, in the heart of Norway’s longest fjord, Sognefjorden, the water deepens to 4,000 feet only a few hundred yards from shore. Farther north, cod-drying racks and tight red boathouses look out over water that is hundreds of feet deep. And yet among the outermost islands in the Lofoten chain—a broken tusk of snow-covered peaks thrusting into the Norwegian Sea—the water shoals away slowly, only a few feet deep, as if these islands rose no higher than the back of a blowing whale. Maps of the Norwegian Sea show a strong current—an extension of the Gulf Stream—bearing northward along the coast. These are relatively warm waters, the kind that make human life bearable as far as 70° north latitude, well above the Arctic Circle, as far north as the northernmost tip of Alaska."

 

Added reactions, insights from those who have been there, planning on this option for the future? Happy to share more, answer any questions, etc.

 

Full story from the NG text at:

http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2013/11/coastal-norway/klinkenborg-text

 

THANKS! Enjoy! Terry in Ohio

 

Super loved Dubrovnik!!! See more details and lots of great visual samples/examples at this link. Have had over 17,835 views on this posting and appreciate those who have tuned-in and dropped by.

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1439227

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Terry,

 

I have so often gone back and read and viewed your pictures. I enjoy them immensely.

 

We are returning to Norway and so I want to thank you for this gift of your pictures. And for your Nat'l Geo mention. I will be sure to pick up that issue!

 

:)

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Terry, I have so often gone back and read and viewed your pictures. I enjoy them immensely. We are returning to Norway and so I want to thank you for this gift of your pictures. And for your Nat'l Geo mention. I will be sure to pick up that issue! )

 

newlondon: Interesting Terry that you commented on the NG article. I found it interesting' date=' but tbh many of the photos were of places the cruise ships don't go. In addition, I felt that some of the most beautiful scenery was left out. [/quote']

 

Appreciate these comments and interest. Glad that bissel will be enjoying Norway this coming summer. Yes, the National Geographic piece showed much more that we and/or others doing the coastal cruising will be able to see and do. BUT, as they noted, this amazing country covers a huge amount of territory and lengths of coastlines and shorelines. Hard for one story and pictures to cover it "ALL" in this very diverse country.

 

This past Sunday on CBS television happened to catch part of the opening to the program, Amazing Race, as their teams were departing from the super scenic Lofoten Island, Arctic Circle, etc., along the western Norway coast. They were heading to Poland. Fun, great views, showing some of the fish-drying racks, dramatic concrete bridges across the waterways, etc. From the below story/website, you can catch more on this show, views in this great part of Norway, etc. They flew from Lisbon to Bodo, Norway. Many had never been where the sun never sets as happens there in the summers. They arrived by ferry in Svolvaer, Norway; then did stringing of ten fish/Cod heads, etc. Lots of visuals shown that bring back nice memories from this part of the Norway coast. These "fake reality" shows are not my personal favorite, but it was good to see, again, some of these locations and scenery.

 

See more and full show in Norway at:

http://www.tvgrapevine.com/index.php/2013-09-11-06-36-02/2013-09-12-09-20-35/2013-09-23-17-58-47/the-amazing-race/4982-the-amazing-race-recap-for-october-20-2013

 

THANKS! Enjoy! Terry in Ohio

 

Celebrity Solstice Visual Highlights? From our June 7-19, 2011, Solstice cruise from Barcelona that had stops in France, Italy, Kotor and Dubrovnik, I have pull together a number of wonderful visuals of the Solstice, its features, food, entertainment, options, etc. We are now at 11,333 views for this shorter version of my larger full review of that cruise and all of the port pictures/details. Check these postings and added info at:

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1803477

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From USA Today on Thursday, they have this headline: "10 irresistibly charming World Heritage cities" with these highlights: "Ancient monuments. Preserved town centers. Superlative art and architecture. While UNESCO has its World Heritage criteria, what makes a place "charming" is a bit more subjective. Perhaps it comes down to winding cobbled lanes and fairy-tale castles or colorful old houses surrounded by outdoor cafes. Maybe it's just a certain je ne sais quoi. While charm, like beauty, rests in the eye of the beholder, these 10 cities from around the world impress with rich culture and history and are sure to captivate your imagination."

 

Here are some story highlights on this one Norway city: Bergen In Norway's "Gateway to the Fjords," painted wooden houses with gabled fronts lean along the harbor, where market sellers entice shoppers with wild smoked salmon, caramelized brown cheese, and jars of orange-red cloudberry jam. Bergen is colorful, even on rainy days. It's also historical. Not only is it designated a World Heritage city, but its old wharf, Bryggen, is listed as a UNESCO site. Originally established for the dried codfish trade by German Hanseatic merchants in the 14th century, this medieval settlement of long, slender dockside homes has been plagued by fires over the years but has been rebuilt each time using traditional methods. Today, some 62 buildings, including the Hanseatic Museum, remain. Explore Bryggen via narrow passageways leading to old warehouses, where the floorboards creak and the walls smell of aged salted wood. Don't miss: Dining at Enhjorningen (The Unicorn), set in one of the restored wharf buildings and known for its seafood menu, and Tracteursted, the oldest restaurant in town, serving classic Bergen food in an old assembly room with slanted floors.

 

Also listed in this top ten group were Bruges/Belgium, Arles/France and Tallinn/Estonia in Europe. We have visited previously all four of these great towns. Love each of them. More details in the full story from the newspaper. Brings back nice memories and/or maybe this can offer ideas if any of these are on your future potential to-do listing. The other six cities sound like good options for us to consider in the future. This includes: Lunenburg/Nova Scotia, Luang Prabang/Laos, Quedlinburg/Germany. Oaxaca/Mexico, Quebec/Canada and Quito/Ecuador.

 

Full story at:

http://www.usatoday.com/story/travel/destinations/2013/10/31/unesco-world-heritage-site-city/3315957/

 

This story is from SmarterTravel.com. See more pictures, details at:

http://www.smartertravel.com/photo-galleries/editorial/10-irresistibly-charming-world-heritage-cities.html?id=576&source=41718

 

THANKS! Enjoy! Terry in Ohio

 

Did a June 7-19, 2011, Celebrity Solstice cruise from Barcelona that had stops in Villefranche, ports near Pisa and Rome, Naples, Kotor, Venice and Dubrovnik. Enjoyed great weather and a wonderful trip. Dozens of wonderful visuals with key highlights, tips, comments, etc., on these postings. We are now at 145,631 views for this live/blog re-cap on our first sailing with Celebrity and much on wonderful Barcelona. Check these postings and added info at:

http://www.boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1426474

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From the November 2013 edition of National Geographic that just arrived at our home today, they have a major story/profile on "Norway's Otherworldly Coast".[/Quote]

 

Absolutely loved the photograph from the island Sula. Living in a land full of pines here in Colorado, the Scotch pines seemed otherworldly to me. Beautiful!

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Hi Terry- Just found your fabulous review and photos.

 

Just booked Crystal Symphony July 14-28 Copenhagen-Copenhagen.

 

We are definitely more interested in DIY instead of ship tours.

 

Ports:

 

Hellysylt/Geiranger 8-5 Pm

Alta 10-9

Honningsvag 8-6

Tromso 8-5

leknes/Lofoten 8-1

Alesund 1-8

Bergen 8-5

Kristiansand 9-6

Oslo 7-6

Skagen-8-5

 

We would really enjoy the Flam railroad, but we don't have a stop there.

 

We don't mind renting a car in certain ports to get the most of the experience.

 

Any helpful tips or suggestions would be appreciated.

 

 

Thank you ,

Robyn

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Hi Terry- Just found your fabulous review and photos. Just booked Crystal Symphony July 14-28 Copenhagen-Copenhagen. We are definitely more interested in DIY instead of ship tours. Ports:

Hellysylt/Geiranger 8-5 Pm

Alta 10-9

Honningsvag 8-6

Tromso 8-5

leknes/Lofoten 8-1

Alesund 1-8

Bergen 8-5

Kristiansand 9-6

Oslo 7-6

Skagen-8-5

We would really enjoy the Flam railroad, but we don't have a stop there. We don't mind renting a car in certain ports to get the most of the experience. Any helpful tips or suggestions would be appreciated. Thank you, Robyn

 

Stumblefoot: Absolutely loved the photograph from the island Sula. Living in a land full of pines here in Colorado' date=' the Scotch pines seemed otherworldly to me. Beautiful! [/quote']

 

Appreciate your nice comments and good follow-up questions. For Robyn, the Symphony is a great ship!! Very good staff, etc. We did the Baltics and Russia, Dover to Stockholm, on this classy craft in late July 2008, including for our first visit to wonderful Copenhagen and doing a day in Oslo. July is perfect time and the best weather period for being there. Congrats!! Good choices.

 

As my live/blog detailed, we did Hellysylt/Geiranger, Honningsvag, Tromso, Leknes/Lofoten, Alesund and Bergen on our cruise. On DIY, we did some of these ports that way. Others, such as Hellysylt/Geiranger, require a ship option in order to do things, especially the "up country", Roof of Norway tour that we enjoyed so much. Why not more DIY? Some of these ports, such as Hellysylt/Geiranger, are very, very small with limited infrastructure for those on-you-own options to be as easy to do and accomplish. The tourism season, unlike in the Med, has a fairly short season and labor costs are high. Ship tours are not perfect and/or cheap, but they, in some cases, can be your best, easiest option. Don't expect things to be "cheap" in Norway.

 

Robyn, tell us more on your interests, other Europe travels, biggest likes and desires. Happy to answer any added questions. Below are a few of my visuals from Oslo and its interesting arts options. BUT, Oslo's "fjord" has nowhere the drama and excitement of the "real" ones on the western coast. Sorry!!

 

People will sometimes ask how Oslo compares to Stockholm and Copenhagen. Much of the difference is about the contrast of Oslo's more contemporary great art/design . . . versus . . . the deeper depth of history/design and royal background associated with both Copenhagen and Stockholm. Both of these capitals of Sweden and Denmark have had much longer recent histories of power and wealth, while Oslo is "newer" in many ways.

 

Two centuries of Viking raids/advances/power went to southern and western areas. But that tapered off following the adoption of Christianity in AD 994. At one point, Norway expanded its control to parts of Britain, Ireland, Iceland and Greenland. Per Wikipedia, Norwegian power peaked in 1265, but competition from the Hanseatic League and the spread of the "Black Death" weakened the country. In 1380, Norway was absorbed into a union with Denmark that lasted more than four centuries. In 1814, Norwegians resisted the cession of their country to Sweden and adopted a new constitution. Sweden went to war with Norway but agreed to let Norway keep its constitution in return for accepting the union under a Swedish king. Later Norway demanded independence, which it gained in a referendum in 1905. that brought back their King for this country. Norway remained neutral in World War I. Despite its declaration of neutrality in World War II, Norway was occupied for five years by forces of Germany. In 1949, it abandoned neutrality becoming a founding member of NATO. Discovery of oil in adjacent waters in the late 1960's boosted Norway's economic fortunes. This "weave of history" gives a better perspective for why and how things evolved from the Viking days down to be controlled by its neighbors back to recently gaining big oil wealth in the past couple of decades.

 

THANKS! Enjoy! Terry in Ohio

 

Did a June 7-19, 2011, Celebrity Solstice cruise from Barcelona that had stops in Villefranche, ports near Pisa and Rome, Naples, Kotor, Venice and Dubrovnik. Enjoyed great weather and a wonderful trip. Dozens of wonderful visuals with key highlights, tips, comments, etc., on these postings. We are now at 146,716 views for this live/blog re-cap on our first sailing with Celebrity and much on wonderful Barcelona. Check these postings and added info at:

http://www.boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1426474

 

 

This picture shows the main, historic fortress next to where many cruise ships dock in Oslo. The fortress construction started around the late 1290’s. The very interesting and moving Norwegian Resistance museum can be visited there. Norwegian Royalty have been buried in the Royal Mausoleum in the castle. A portion of this fortress was replicated at the Norway pavilion at Disney’s Epcot Center.:

 

1A-Oslo-Harbor-OldFortress.jpg

 

 

At the National Museum in Oslo, there is Munch art, including one of his two famed Scream painting that are in this Norway capital. At the separate Munch Museum, just a little distance away from central Oslo, there is the other Scream painting in Oslo. There are many other of his painting at this museum by the famed artist.:

 

1A-Oslo-NatGalMunch.jpg

 

 

Vigeland Park has a wide variety of outdoor sculptures in a super, wonderful setting that is a highlight for Oslo. There is a wide variety of art, water features, spectacular settings, etc. Its admission is free and the views and art are "priceless". It is open 24/7 so hours are not an issue.:

 

1A-Oslo-VigelandPk.jpg

 

 

Here is Oslo’s City Hall exterior and one of its large interior spaces where the Nobel Peace Prize is awarded annually on December 10 each year. This structure houses the city council and city administration, plus art studios and galleries. The construction started in 1931 with the main structure completed in 1936. The German invasion of Norway in 1940 caused construction to stop, and it was not resumed until 1947. This City Hall was official opened in 1950. Its characteristic architecture, artworks and the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony makes it one of Oslo's most famous buildings. The roof of the eastern tower has a 49-bell carillon which plays every hour. This City Hall is situated in central downtown Oslo dramatically overlooking the scenic harbor area.:

 

1A-Oslo-CityHallExt.jpg

 

 

1A-Oslo-CityHallInterior.jpg

 

 

Sailing out from Oslo with the red brick City Hall in the background and the surrounding areas and “hills” showing around this so-called “fjord”.:

 

1A-Oslo-SailingOut.jpg

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Thank you Terry for your info on Oslo- We have cruised twice on Symphony, Canada/New England and Baltic twice on Serenity Panama Canal and most recently Venice-Monte Carlo. We are both 51 years old and really love to eat in local restaurants and try to avoid the touristy areas in fact in Venice we visited a very local bar close to the train station with .60 euro wine and 1 euro ciccheti, great people watching.

 

We will probably not experience much on the food side as I am not fond of the Norwegian cuisine. We would be interested in exploring small villages, having a beer with locals, possibly the crab expedition some have spoken about .

 

On an Alaskan cruise with Regent, we white water rafted the Mendenhall Glacier, toured with a float plane and helicoptered to a glacier for a dog sledding ride.

 

I would like to see if we could experience something similar to those excursions.

 

Any other comments would be greatly appreciated

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Thank you Terry for your info on Oslo- We have cruised twice on Symphony, Canada/New England and Baltic twice on Serenity Panama Canal and most recently Venice-Monte Carlo. We are both 51 years old and really love to eat in local restaurants and try to avoid the touristy areas in fact in Venice we visited a very local bar close to the train station with .60 euro wine and 1 euro ciccheti, great people watching. We will probably not experience much on the food side as I am not fond of the Norwegian cuisine. We would be interested in exploring small villages, having a beer with locals, possibly the crab expedition some have spoken about. On an Alaskan cruise with Regent, we white water rafted the Mendenhall Glacier, toured with a float plane and helicoptered to a glacier for a dog sledding ride. I would like to see if we could experience something similar to those excursions. Any other comments would be greatly appreciated

 

Wow, you've had great cruising experiences and interests. I am sure you'll love Norway. It is good to love to eat in local restaurants, but the costs and quality/time challenges on a cruise make that more difficult in this area of the world. On float plane and helicopter options, I do not remember seeing that many potentials in that direction. Part of the difficulty is that weather can be unpredictable and not always cooperatives in this region. On our Baltics cruise on the Symphony, I signed up for a flight plane in Oslo and a hot-air balloon in Stockholm. But technical problems on the first and weather on the second, scrubbed out both. A town like Bergen has more tourism infrastructure and options such as you might seek, but there are so many good things to see here that you don't have the time to do it "ALL" there. Or, even half of what you'd like in Bergen.

 

There are some small villages in Norway, but it is not always as easy to make that "connection" as it would be when traveling in parts of France, Italy when you are having evening meals there to spur those interactions in such small towns. The ship options are not perfect, but they tend to be easier to use and consider in many of these smaller ports along the Norway coast.

 

Keep the good questions rolling. What else is of interests, need?

 

THANKS! Enjoy! Terry in Ohio

 

Celebrity Solstice Visual Highlights? From our June 7-19, 2011, Solstice cruise from Barcelona that had stops in France, Italy, Kotor and Dubrovnik, I have pull together a number of wonderful visuals of the Solstice, its features, food, entertainment, options, etc. We are now at 11,735 views for this shorter version of my larger full review of that cruise and all of the port pictures/details. Check these postings and added info at:

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1803477

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From the AFP Europe newswire this morning, they have this headline: "Amid austerity and debt, Denmark remains happiest nation" with these highlights: "They are the most indebted people in the world, live through long, dark winters and have a shorter life expectancy than several Mediterranean countries. Yet for the past four decades, the Danes have consistently rated themselves as the happiest people on earth. Among foreigners in Denmark, theories as to why the host population is so content range from its egalitarian policies to its history to grumblings that some people are simply easier to satisfy than others. The Danes themselves are more puzzled by their purported happiness, sometimes referring to it facetiously when data paint a less rosy picture -- like when the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development said they were the third-largest consumers per capita of antidepressants. Denmark first topped the happiness table in 1973, when a European Union survey found that people there were more satisfied with life than in any other member state. This year, it held on to the top spot in the United Nations' annual World Happiness Report even as it suffered through the worst economic crisis of its post-World War II history. 'One of the most important things making the Danes happy is the security in Danish society,' said Meik Wiking, director of the Happiness Research Institute, a Danish think-tank aiming to improve the quality of life in Denmark and abroad. Denmark has the highest taxes in the world as a percentage of the overall economy, but many Danes value the social security net they get in return, including subsidised childcare and unemployment insurance that guarantees 80-percent wages for two years if they lose their jobs. The second pillar of happiness is a high level of trust between people, even for a stranger on the street, according to Wiking. This could be a spillover effect from people's high level of trust in the government, which is underpinned by a low level of corruption."

 

We have super loved Copenhagen from our visits there in 2008 and 2010. More earlier on this live/blog.

 

Full story at:

http://www.france24.com/en/20131110-amid-austerity-debt-denmark-remains-happiest-nation

 

THANKS! Enjoy! Terry in Ohio

 

Super loved Dubrovnik!!! See more details and lots of great visual samples/examples at this link. Have had over 18,329 views on this posting and appreciate those who have tuned-in and dropped by.

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1439227

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  • 3 months later...

Last month we got back from seeing more fjords and great nature situations. It was not Norway, but in Australia and New Zealand. Lots to see and love there. From below, you can see just three quick samples. Many, many more on the full live/blog. The puffins were great in Norway, but who cannot love the Koalas, etc. We got to see lots of birds, flowers, seals, kangaroos, etc., while being down under. Plus, it was warm there. Much better than being back home in Ohio during the bad cold and snow periods.

 

This Norway posting is now over 135,020 views. Appreciate those who have tuned in, asked questions, made comments, shared information, posted on their experiences, etc. Keep up the good work. Happy to answer any questions that are helpful.

 

THANKS! Enjoy! Terry in Ohio

 

Just back from doing a 14-day Celebrity Solstice, Jan. 20-Feb. 3, 2014, Sydney to Auckland adventure on this ship and getting a big sampling for the wonders of "down under” before and after this cruise. Go to:

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1974139

for much more information and lots of wonderful pictures on these amazing sights in this great part of the world. Now at 38,937 views for this fun posting.

 

 

Going into New Zealand's Milford Sound on the Celebrity Solstice, first, here is the view from our balcony on the tenth floor. We did not like the overcast skies and rain, but it added to the “drama” with the huge number of waterfalls in this area. In the second picture, my wife is checking out this great sights from our balcony early this morning.:

 

QueentownExcur1stA12_zps49fd9215.jpg

 

 

QueentownExcur1stA14_zpsd236d1b9.jpg

 

 

From Australia's Kangaroo Island, here is one of the cute Koalas we found out in the wild. Aren't they so lovable?:

 

KangIslandOneA1_zpsc37fce84.jpg

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  • 2 weeks later...

Terry-your posts have inspired us to make the trip aboard the Azamara Journey. We have the car and boat already rented to try and re-live this day. Would appreciate any navigation details--please email me at laura dot shemanski at comcast dot net!

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Terry-your posts have inspired us to make the trip aboard the Azamara Journey. We have the car and boat already rented to try and re-live this day. Would appreciate any navigation details--please email me at laura dot shemanski at comcast dot net!

 

Hi, Laura! Appreciate your follow-up and interest. I sent you back an e-mail on March 18, plus also today. Might re-check your e-mail box, including for where the spam-catcher will sometimes mis-direct or dump things. Happy to share more, answer any questions. Just let me know.

 

THANKS! Enjoy! Terry in Ohio

 

If Venice is one of your future desires or past favorites, you might look at this earlier posting that I did on the Italy board that shows many options and visual potentials for this city that is so great for "walking around", personally sampling the great history and architecture. This posting has now had over 35,285 views and I appreciate those who have dropped by and tuned in.

Venice: Loving It & Why??!!

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1278226

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Terry-your posts have inspired us to make the trip aboard the Azamara Journey. We have the car and boat already rented to try and re-live this day. Would appreciate any navigation details--please email me at laura dot shemanski at comcast dot net!

 

Yes, Laura! Just looked at your upcoming cruise. Impressive!!

 

YOUR SCHEDULE:

Depart June 14 on Azamara Journey from HAMBURG/Germany, sea day, arrive BERGEN/Nor and docked 8 am to 11 pm, FLAM and GUDVANGEN on one day and then GEIRANGER; SVOLVAER in Lofoten Island, Trollfjord, TROMSO, up to HONNINGSVAG and top of Norway, two sea days going south, then back to OLDEN, STAVANGER, another sea day before finishing in charming and wonderful Copenhagen.

 

We did all of your Norway stops except just the two at the end of your cruise.

 

Let me know your specific questions, etc.

 

Am posting here on the live/blog site to share any info of value to any others considering some of the ports, these types of cruises. Have you posted on your roll call? It is at:

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1908704

 

THANKS! Enjoy! Terry in Ohio

 

Did a June 7-19, 2011, Celebrity Solstice cruise from Barcelona that had stops in Villefranche, ports near Pisa and Rome, Naples, Kotor, Venice and Dubrovnik. Enjoyed great weather and a wonderful trip. Dozens of nice visuals with key highlights, tips, comments, etc., on these postings. We are now at 165,032 views for this live/blog re-cap on our first sailing with Celebrity and much on wonderful Barcelona. Check these postings and added info at:

http://www.boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1426474

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  • 3 months later...

We're fairly new to Cruise Critic and still learning how to navigate the boards. Did you book the train and cruise on your own in Flam or was it included in your cruise? We're taking the Caribbean Princess on June 2015 and JUST started planning excursions. Any advice you have on booking these trips if you did so? Thanks!!

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We're fairly new to Cruise Critic and still learning how to navigate the boards. Did you book the train and cruise on your own in Flam or was it included in your cruise? We're taking the Caribbean Princess on June 2015 and JUST started planning excursions. Any advice you have on booking these trips if you did so? Thanks!!

 

Appreciate your follow-up and good questions. Welcome to these CC Boards. Lots of smart helpful people here. I am happy to answer any added questions as your planning and prep moves forward. The only "dumb" question is the one you don't ask. Don't be shy!! Look over my full live/blog, let my what other ports where you have questions, needs for added info, etc.

 

On the Flam rail adventure, it is a "must-do" in my view based on our experience. Buying tickets on your own? Possible, maybe! Much depends on how many different ships will be in this port that day, their size, number of passengers flooding this small village, how long you will have there, etc. We only had the morning there and didn't want to take any risks of being shut-out. Through the ship rail excursion costs us a little more, it did lessen any worries about crowds in the port, challenges if the ship was late arriving, etc. Does this help? Trade-offs to consider! Saving money is good, but at what risk and/or added logistical work.

 

Now in Colorado, enjoying a "Rocky Mountain High", but without any of that Mary Jane stuff. Great sights and sites here.

 

THANKS! Enjoy! Terry in Ohio

 

Back from doing a 14-day Celebrity Solstice, Jan. 20-Feb. 3, 2014, Sydney to Auckland adventure on this ship and getting a big sampling for the wonders of "down under” before and after this cruise. Go to:

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1974139

for much more information and lots of wonderful pictures on these amazing sights in this great part of the world. Now at 64,687 views for this fun posting.

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  • 2 weeks later...
Hi Terry, When you toured helsinski did you do it yourself or booked with a tour company. Thanks a lot!!! Rica

 

Welcome for worldtravelista in posting and using these wonderful Cruise Critic boards. Keep asking good questions. Don't be shy.

 

Regarding Helsinki, we did a tour outside of town to the country home for the famed Finnish architect Eliel Saarinen at Hvittrask with its buildings made of natural stones and logs from the surrounding area. He was the father of the famed American architect who designed the St. Louis Gateway Arch, Dulles and JFK TWA terminals, CBS Black Rock building, etc.

 

Our private tour was arranged as a "bonus" through our travel agent's group consortium. It was not a ship tour and/or something you pick up at the dock or in the main town.

 

In Helsinki, our tour also passed the Saarinen-designed train station, Olympic Stadium, used for the 1952 Olympic Games and the statue of the "Flying Finn", runner Paavo Nurmi, and visited the park with the stainless steel monument for composer Jean Sibelius, a patriot whose most famous orchestral piece was appropriately named Finlandia.

 

The main downtown market area is a must-see for great "walking-around" sights and options. Much can be done there and nearby at the Senate Square, etc. Below are a few visual samples, previews, etc. Helsinki does not have the centuries of Royal heritage and architecture that you will see in Copenhagen, St. Petersburg and Stockholm. But, its style and charm is very good and interesting.

 

Here's the web location for the official tourism office in Helsinki.

http://www.visithelsinki.fi/In_English/Visitor/Helsinki/Tourist_Information.iw3

 

THANKS! Enjoy! Terry in Ohio

 

Back from doing a 14-day Celebrity Solstice, Jan. 20-Feb. 3, 2014, Sydney to Auckland adventure on this ship and getting a big sampling for the wonders of "down under” before and after this cruise. Go to:

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1974139

for much more information and lots of wonderful pictures on these amazing sights in this great part of the world. Now at 67,248 views for this fun posting.

 

 

Helsinki’s Church of Rock, or Temppeliaukion Kirkko, is carved out of solid stone with a unique contemporary design. This Lutheran church was opened in September 1969. For economic reasons, its suggested plan was scaled back and the interior space reduced to about one-quarter of the original, pre-WWII plan. The interior was excavated and built directly out of solid rock and is bathed in natural light which enters through the glazed dome. The church is used frequently as a concert venue with its excellent acoustics. The acoustic quality is created by the rough, virtually unworked rock surfaces. The Temppeliaukio church is one of the most popular tourist attractions in this city with half a million people visiting annually. :

 

1A-Helsinki-RockChurch.jpg

 

 

Uspenski Cathedral, Helsinki’s traditional Eastern Orthodox Church, is placed on a solid stone base overlooking the main market. Dedicated to the Virgin Mary and designed by a Russian architect, it was built 1862–1868. On the back of the cathedral, there is a plaque commemorating Russian Emperor Alexander II, who was the sovereign of the Grand Duchy of Finland during the cathedral's construction. It is claimed to be the largest Orthodox church in Western Europe, has has several valuable icons and attracts over a half million tourists yearly. Admission to the Cathedral is free of charge and it is closed on Mondays.:

 

1A-Helsinki-ChurchRock.jpg

 

 

Overlooking and dominating Helsinki's Senate Square, this is the Helsinki Cathedral, originally called the Church of St. Nicholas. This Lutheran Church was commenced in 1830 and completed in 1852. Its dome is a key local landmark. A statue of Russian Emperor Alexander II, erected in 1894, is located in the center of the square. After Finland's independence in 1917, demands were made regarding the removal of the statue, but that never happened. Senate Square is one of the main tourist attractions of Helsinki.:

 

1A-Helsinki-Sen.jpg

 

 

In Helsinki’s main downtown, this is the shopping area next to the main market:

 

1A-Helsinki-DowntownBldgs.jpg

 

 

Helsinki’s main market is right on the water with lots of goods and foods for sale:

 

1A-Helsinki-Mark-Dwt.jpg

 

 

Helsinki’s market area has lots of food and craft stands:

 

HelsMarketFood.jpg

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Thanks a lot for your reply and help😃

 

Appreciate this follow-up and enjoy your upcoming Baltics adventure. Great, charming, historic, scenic area.

 

This live/blog just went over 150,000 views this week. Have enjoyed all of the various comments, questions, interest. Happy to share more. Keep up the good planning for future Norway and northern Europe trips.

 

Super enjoyed our first-time visit to Colorado earlier this month. Below are just three visual samples for the enjoyment we experienced there.

 

We continue working on our planned mid March-mid April 2015 Africa (Kenya-Zanzibar-Madagascar-South Africa-Zimbabwe-Botswana) adventure. This includes a 13-day segment on the Silver Whisper from Mombasa, Kenya to Cape Town. Had lunch last Wednesday with the retired director of the Columbus Zoo who has taken twelve trips to Africa and worked with Jack Hanna. Fun doing that future research!!

 

THANKS! Enjoy! Terry in Ohio

 

Back from doing a 14-day Celebrity Solstice, Jan. 20-Feb. 3, 2014, Sydney to Auckland adventure on this ship and getting a big sampling for the wonders of "down under” before and after this cruise. Go to:

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1974139

for much more information and lots of wonderful pictures on these amazing sights in this great part of the world. Now at 68,334 views for this fun posting.

 

 

From visiting central Colorado earlier in July, including Breckenridge, here is a wonderful and filling breakfast with poached eggs, real, slow-cooked corned beef hash, potatoes and topped with classic Hollandaise sauce. What else to eat at an altitude of nearly two miles up??:

 

Colorado2014A1_zpsabf4e0b9.jpg

 

 

For staying in Colorado Springs, Co., with our fellow Aust.-NZ cruise travelers, John and Susan, one of the first super highlights was visiting the U.S. Air Force Academy where two of their daughters graduated. The Chapel is in the background with a plane in the foreground. Also, we were traveling up the Pike’s Peak Cog Railroad near Manitou Springs. We had a front-row seat right next to where the engineer was guiding this historic train on this super scenic route to the top of this famed 14,110’ mountain.:

 

Colorado2014A5_zps024d9980.jpg

 

 

We also visited other key parts of central Colorado, including Boulder, Denver, Crested Butte and Breckenridge. Here is a sample for for some of the drama near Crested Butte with their wild flowers at the peak of the season and a stream and mountains in the background.:

 

Colorado2014A3_zps883df459.jpg

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  • 2 weeks later...

Terry,

 

So glad you enjoyed your first trip to Colorado. So, many of us transplants came out for the winter fun, but decided to stay permanently after we experienced our first Colorado summer. While extremely biased, Crested Butte is one of the most beautiful places on this earth.

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