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Flam - docking times


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I am thinking of booking the Flam railway online (not through P & O). However, everyone else seems to have had the same idea (and there appear to be 2 other ships in port that day too). The only slots left are 9.45 a.m. or 5.45 p.m. I don't want to run the risk of booking the 9.45 tickets, only to find that the ship hasn't docked yet! Guess it's my fault for not booking the tickets sooner, but since we aren't sailing until 14 July, I thought we had plenty of time. Unfortunately, one website website just has a "n/a" against our particular cruise arrival time, while another says 8 a.m. We might have to resort to booking the excursion via P & O, which is not ideal as the cost will be far more.

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We were docked in Flam last year but do be aware that sometimes ships tender at Flam. It would be worth just double checking that you are docked as if tendering you may have to factor in some delay as they will make sure booked excursions get off first.

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I read here on CC that there is another website that sometimes has tickets for the train when the main one is sold out. If you scroll through or search on the Northern Europe forum you should find it. Sorry, I can't remember the name.

 

 

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I visited Flam on a cruise last year, albeit on Cunard not P&O.

 

We had been told it would be a tender operation, but oddly the ship initially berthed. However after some passengers got off it had to move and do a tender operation as planned. It had to move to give up its berth to a HAL ship (no idea why the switch).

 

What it did mean was the HAL ship was delayed berthing so all the passengers on excursions on the morning booked train missed it! Lots of refunds.

 

However, I had also left it too late to book online but found out they do not sell 100% of the train tickets online, but hold back a portion to sell at the ticket office in the station. Get yourself off the ship on an early tender and you may be lucky as I was.

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If you are thinking of booking the train journey then BOOK EARLY. When we were there last year there were two cruise ships in port and all tickets had been reserved for ship tours. They did state that if we had booked on-line before the cruise commenced we would have got tickets. The ship is normally in and passengers allowed to disembark by 8 at the latest.

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I must admit I really really really wanted to do the Flam Railway. So before our cruise I booked a P and O excursion. I have not done that for more than ten years. It was expensive but it minimised the risk of not being able to do the Flam Railway. As long as we docked or tendered in Flam on time and the train was not cancelled I was going on the railway.

 

I did the railway up cycle part of the way down excursion. It was very enjoyable. We were a small group with a good knowledgeable local guide. We only filled half our allocated carriage on the train. So plenty of space to spread out and windows to look through. The train guard came and chatted. We were encouraged to get off to take photographs in the snow with our guide standing in the door I presume to make sure the train did not leave. All in all it was very enjoyable trip with a like minded group of various types cyclists. I never felt herded around which I hate.

 

If I go to Flam again (I am already looking for a suitable cruise) I would risk buying train tickets before departure or on the day. If I missed out on the train a second time I would be disappointed but it would not be the end of (my) the world.

 

Best wishes, Stephen

 

 

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This is just my personal view, I was not in the least bit impressed by the railway journey. I can get just as good if not better views and snow scenes doing a shopping trip by train here at home.

 

Add to that the fact that there are lots of people on the train so it is busy and the windows steam up (take a cloth to dry off your window). You then get stuck at the top for a while in a place which has one mediocre hotel that everyone piles into.

 

Queues for the toilet are lengthy, when we were there they actaully opened a couple of the bedrooms to add extra toilet facilities.

 

The cost of a coffee is eye watering if you can even get a seat, though if you are part of a tour hot drinks and in our case a waffle / pancake and jam was included.

 

All in all I found it a pretty boring journey and would have preferred to stay in Flam where I could at least get a decent walk. Obviously others enjoy it or it would not be so popular, just another perspective for you to consider.

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This is just my personal view, I was not in the least bit impressed by the railway journey. I can get just as good if not better views and snow scenes doing a shopping trip by train here at home.

 

 

 

Add to that the fact that there are lots of people on the train so it is busy and the windows steam up (take a cloth to dry off your window). You then get stuck at the top for a while in a place which has one mediocre hotel that everyone piles into.

 

 

 

Queues for the toilet are lengthy, when we were there they actaully opened a couple of the bedrooms to add extra toilet facilities.

 

 

 

The cost of a coffee is eye watering if you can even get a seat, though if you are part of a tour hot drinks and in our case a waffle / pancake and jam was included.

 

 

 

All in all I found it a pretty boring journey and would have preferred to stay in Flam where I could at least get a decent walk. Obviously others enjoy it or it would not be so popular, just another perspective for you to consider.

 

 

My partner felt much the same as you. I loved the train. She booked a round trip through P and O and the coaches were full. They had to form a line at the station too. Very school like. Some people were moaning about the cruise during the train journey. Even though we were both on P and O trips my partner was told she could not sit with me in the half empty cycling carriage. Also they were encouraged to stay on train when it stopped. The the train and cycle tour was so different.

 

Best wishes, Stephen.

 

 

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My partner felt much the same as you. I loved the train. She booked a round trip through P and O and the coaches were full. They had to form a line at the station too. Very school like. Some people were moaning about the cruise during the train journey. Even though we were both on P and O trips my partner was told she could not sit with me in the half empty cycling carriage. Also they were encouraged to stay on train when it stopped. The the train and cycle tour was so different.

 

Best wishes, Stephen.

 

 

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Stephen, your partners experience sounds just like mine. It was just like a school trip. Glad to hear that the cycling one was better.

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I must admit I really really really wanted to do the Flam Railway. So before our cruise I booked a P and O excursion. I have not done that for more than ten years. It was expensive but it minimised the risk of not being able to do the Flam Railway. As long as we docked or tendered in Flam on time and the train was not cancelled I was going on the railway.

 

I did the railway up cycle part of the way down excursion. It was very enjoyable. We were a small group with a good knowledgeable local guide. We only filled half our allocated carriage on the train. So plenty of space to spread out and windows to look through. The train guard came and chatted. We were encouraged to get off to take photographs in the snow with our guide standing in the door I presume to make sure the train did not leave. All in all it was very enjoyable trip with a like minded group of various types cyclists. I never felt herded around which I hate.

 

If I go to Flam again (I am already looking for a suitable cruise) I would risk buying train tickets before departure or on the day. If I missed out on the train a second time I would be disappointed but it would not be the end of (my) the world.

 

Best wishes, Stephen

 

 

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I also did the train up, part cycle down excursion last year and loved it. Just a shame that they could not do the cycling from the top as it all seemed a bit too short. No need to worry about it being strenuous either....there is much more breaking than cycling! It still seemed good value for money though and much better than simply reversing the scenery on the way back down on the train. Bikes were good quality and you are left to come down at your own pace not in a huge peloton. Plenty of photo opportunities without the telephone poles and window reflections in the way.

 

 

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I also did the train up, part cycle down excursion last year and loved it. Just a shame that they could not do the cycling from the top as it all seemed a bit too short. No need to worry about it being strenuous either....there is much more breaking than cycling! It still seemed good value for money though and much better than simply reversing the scenery on the way back down on the train. Bikes were good quality and you are left to come down at your own pace not in a huge peloton. Plenty of photo opportunities without the telephone poles and window reflections in the way.

 

 

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I too would have liked longer cycling. I hardly peddled at all. It was a lovely way to see the scenery with plenty of photo stops.

 

I am glad we did not have to have to cycle as a group. Some of our groups were not very experienced. Mainly use to spin classes. I kept my distance.

 

I did a Thomson cruise and they had bicycles on the ship. An excursion was available in each port. The excursion were lead by the onboard specialist cycle staff member using GPS. More demanding cycling but not really much local knowledge. Again very enjoyable.

 

It is just lovely to get away from the crowds of people on the ship and busyness of the ports.

 

Best wishes, Stephen.

 

 

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Apologies!

The site, that I have relied on in the past, only shows Aruora in port on the 7th June.

 

However taking the information given on this thread, and looking elsewhere, Black Watch is due in Flaam on the same day and it appears to be before us.clear.png?emoji-embarrass-1727

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