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Almost Live from Prinsendam's Farewell Voyage


TiogaCruiser
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Funny, I got used to the block parties on Regent, which was started on both lines by Capt. Dag, but not on our cruise, but we had a substitute Captain.

when I did this cruise, I did do the Polar Plunge as we crossed the arctic Circle.  Once in the pool, I didn’t want to get out and face the cold!

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19 minutes ago, TiogaCruiser said:

We just dropped the lines a few minutes ago and we’re heading out of Honningsvåg. We could not have had a more beautiful day.

More later.

 

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You are so lucky to have such a beautiful day!  Enjoy!

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On 6/22/2019 at 5:44 PM, Av8rix said:

I've always been wondering the same thing about the magnificent ship models that were on Ryndam but so far have not had any luck in finding answers. 

 

There is a model of the Ryndam, the 1951 version, in the Crow's Nest of the Koningsdam.  I'm not sure if it came from the Ryndam of 1994.

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1 hour ago, St Pete Cruiser said:

 

There is a model of the Ryndam, the 1951 version, in the Crow's Nest of the Koningsdam.  I'm not sure if it came from the Ryndam of 1994.

Thanks very much for your reply, but I didn't mean a model of Ryndam. 

 

Ryndam was the nautical-theme ship.  She had so very many sailing-ship models and other artifacts (sextants, figureheads, compasses, etc).  I was wondering what happened to all of that stuff, particularly the ship models.

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17 hours ago, TiogaCruiser said:

We just dropped the lines a few minutes ago and we’re heading out of Honningsvåg. We could not have had a more beautiful day.

 

Beautiful pic of a beautiful day indeed. 🙂 

 

Enjoy!

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June 23, 2019: North Cape (Nordkapp) and Honnisvag

 

We awoke to a beautiful, clear day and cold air. Sometime during the night someone turned on the wave machine, but only set it to low. (I personally would not have minded if they kicked it (way) up, but my other half might not have appreciated that, and I want him to have a good time and cruise with me again. 😉 ) We could hear the wind and water softly slapping against the hull during the night. 

 

Scenic cruising began around 8:30 with a sail past the northern most part of Norway and the peninsula known as North Cape.The Cape itself is a rather tall flat topped plateau with a Visitors Center and monument/statue of the world on it. The coast below is rather rugged and barren. It rather reminds me of Cape Horn. Scenic cruising unofficially continued until we docked in the tiny town of Honningsvag. This scenic little town (population 25,000) is known as the world’s most northern village. It was burned to the ground (except for the church) by the Nazi’s during WWII to make it more difficult for the Russians to occupy the area.) One of the main industries is fishing.

 

We booked a private tour found by (another roll call member) with Blue Puffin. The excursion offered a nice variety, including the the North Cape Visitor’s Center, 2 fishing villages, along with other stops. There was really not much that interested us that was offered by the ship.

 

At the first fishing village where we stopped, we saw how fish is dried (using only the sun and no salt) for use by the local people. The main fish caught is cod.The fish is gutted and hung on wood rails to dry. While it is still moist it has to be protected by nets so the birds don’t have a feast. There are no flies as it is too cold,😳 so no worries in that department. Other fish is salted and dried, and the majority of that catch is sent to Brazil, Portugal or Spain for Bacalao. And finally, a small amount of salmon is smoked for the use of the local people. 

 

The next place we stopped was at another fishing village, where they had some King Crabs in a pool that we could see. These crabs are not native to the area, and in fact, pose a hazard to the cod. The fishermen harvest as much of them as they are able, as it protects the fishing, and is quite lucrative for them, as whole crab command a good price.

 

 

Along the way we saw many reindeer, which are owned by the Sami. These are the indigenous people (formerly known as Laplanders). They are nomadic and keep herds of the reindeer, which provide them with food. The reindeer are allowed to wander on their own and eat the wild grasses. We stopped at a small settlement where a Sami family has a store where they sell several handcrafts. 

 

Finally we got to the Visitor’s Center where we were able to walk to the monument that we could see from the ship when we sailed by in the morning. Quite often this rock is shrouded in clouds so our guide urged us to make our first stop at the main point where the monument is located. We had about 90 minutes at the Visitors Center to walk around and see the exhibits. 

 

When we got back to the ship we took a walk up the hill behind where our ship was “parked” and got a really nice view of her in the harbor.

 

It’s now after 10:00pm and the sun is no where near the horizon. It is in the north west, and looks about 3 hours from “setting”, which it will not do. At least, not for us for the next several days (until we get further south). So it is time to draw the drapes and get some sleep.

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Edited by TiogaCruiser
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We are likely going to be loosing internet connectivity for Geiranger and perhaps Flaam, so if I am not able to get caught up tomorrow, it may be a few days. Tomorrow is a sea day and Captain Albert is speaking again. 🙂

Our group is scheduled for Mariners Lunch. We should be at sea (as opposed to the inside passage, as we have been the past few days). 

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59 minutes ago, TiogaCruiser said:

We are likely going to be loosing internet connectivity for Geiranger and perhaps Flaam, so if I am not able to get caught up tomorrow, it may be a few days. Tomorrow is a sea day and Captain Albert is speaking again. 🙂

Our group is scheduled for Mariners Lunch. We should be at sea (as opposed to the inside passage, as we have been the past few days). 

Savor the experience, report back when it's convenient.

 

Roy

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2 hours ago, TiogaCruiser said:

We are likely going to be loosing internet connectivity for Geiranger and perhaps Flaam, so if I am not able to get caught up tomorrow, it may be a few days. Tomorrow is a sea day and Captain Albert is speaking again. 🙂

Our group is scheduled for Mariners Lunch. We should be at sea (as opposed to the inside passage, as we have been the past few days). 

They told us we would when I was on the Koningsdam in 2017, but we didn't.  However, the advice to savor the journey and report when you can is good.  

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Sea Day #3, June 26, Mariner’s Lunch

 

Today was a sea day. I’m jumping a bit ahead as I have a few moments now while things are fresh, and don’t have to transfer pictures from 2 devices in order to complete a post. 

 

We have had lovely weather today, and a ship that is just starting to dance on the waves. But just barely......It’s enough to make the ship creak and slowly bob in the water. 

 

There was a presentation by the gentleman who wrote the book we all received this morning. Mariner’s Lunches were today. I believe there were 2 seatings with high star Mariners before our seating. Per Captain we have some 710 guests aboard, so it is not fully sold out. 

 

The menu choices included Starters: Seafood with Coriander Aioli or Green Pea Soup. Main choices were Oregano Roasted Chicken with saffron rice, almonds, dried fruit, apricot vinaigrette and braised vegetables, or Rainbow Trout with Shallots and Brandy Crust with vegetable quinoa and leek fondue, or Pumpkin Ravioli in Sundried Tomato Pesto with mascarpone, arugula and mushrooms. Dessert was Rhubarb Oatmeal Streusel Cake.

 

We did get the Prinsendam Tiles for this year. Tonight is our final Gala night (and final for Prinsendam), so will post after that.

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Today has been a very nice day, even if it is the beginning of the last phase of the cruise. We have 3 more ports, a final sea day, then we all get off, and the minimal crew sails Prinsendam for Germany.

 

Captain Albert played to a full house this afternoon, and did a fascinating lecture (80 minutes) on the history of HAL. Much of it he has discussed in his blog over the years, but parts that were totally new to me were those around WWII. Needless to say, the 80 minutes just flew by. 

 

Tonight was final Gala. (Final. Gala. 🤣 Okay, now I’m fine.) 

The menu included:

 

Olive Oil citrus poached jumbo shrimp with brandy cocktail sauce, Farm Beets Salad with orange, roasted pistachio and goat cheese, or coconut crusted scallops.

 

Soups included Cream of Sunchoke or Seafood Cioppino.

 

Mains were:

Mushroom ravioli with garlic cream sauce, forest mushrooms and tomato, Maine Butter Poached Lobster and Pea Purée with pasta and crab meat, Beef Tournedos with Eggplant Crumb, parsnips purée, asparagus, eggplant and black olive,  Roasted Rack of Veal Prosciutto and Sage with mascarpone mashed baby vegetables or Roasted Duck Breast with lavender honey, sweet corn purée and blueberries.

 

Dessert selections included Raspberry Financier with white chocolate berry cremaux, Dulce de Leche Cheesecake wiht Roasted bunts, or Pear Strudel wiht creek anglaise and vanilla ice cream. We all received a complimentary glass of bubbly after dinner, to celebrate the final Gala.*

 

Returning to our cabin we found a pillow gift of larger commemorative tiles. 

 

Tomorrow we are in Geiranger and our day begins early with a promised scenic sail in.  We will be taking our evening walk soon and turning in early, as we really want to be on deck early tomorrow. Captain indicated we can (finally) expect a sunset around midnight with sunrise after 3:00 am. That is the first for us in several days. As we have clouds now it is hard to see how high the sun is, but it is quite bright, like around 3:00p in LA now.

 

So signing off for tonight-

~TC

 

* Someone who i will not identify, indicated the plan is to use a lot of the wine that goes with the ship.......

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June 24, 2019 Tromso, Norway

 

Tromso lies south of the North Cape, but well above the Arctic Circle. It is part of a large number of islands that make up an inside passage within Norway and part of the town lies on both sides of the channel. Tromso is a tourist destination during the dark months (November through March) when people come to see the northern lights. 

 

We chose a shore excursion through the cruise line that took us about 30 minutes out of town to a large kennel where they have 160 Alaskan Huskies they train as sled dogs. The entertainment for the day was to play with the dogs, and to take some of them for a walk in the local countryside. These dogs are bred and taught to pull sleds.... which brings us to the big question:  

How do you walk a sled dog? 

 

We were given sturdy waterproof boots and large belts to cinch around our waists or upper hips that had 2 rings attached to them with heavy duty elastic. A dog was hitched up to both rings on the rig, and we were cautioned to lean backwards and use our weight to counteract the dog’s forward pulling. We walked through a bog area, up a hill to an area about a half a mile behind the kennel where there was a great view of the countryside and the surrounding mountains. As in other places we have seen, the hillsides were covered with beautiful wild flowers. On the way back it began to rain. Coming back down the hill we had to be extra careful to dig our heels into the hillside to prevent a too quick descent and/or fall. 

 

After the walk we had a lunch of open faced Norwegian style sandwiches and chocolate cake in a reproduced Sami tent (lavvo). There was a roaring fire in an open fire cooking area in the center of the tent where they made coffee and heated water for tea. Staff brought in 2 puppies who were 3 weeks old for us to cuddle and socialize. 

 

As our ship was right in town we dropped our things in our cabin and headed out to see a bit of the town. Walking around the old town, we found the church and went inside. We also found a market and took a little sidetrack through it. We have been hearing about the brown cheese that Norwegians love, and our guide had provided the name of it written down, so we were able to find it amid other cheese in the local market.

 

Then we took in the Arctic Museum, with its exhibits on Roald Amundsen and much of the early exploration and trapping in the Arctic. It was quite interesting. 

 

Sail away was followed by scenic cruising that lasted until we called it a night. Prinsendam kept the pilot onboard and took the inside passage to Narvik, which meant the scenery went on all night. (Remember, that sun is not setting up here, so we basically had all night scenic cruising.)  There were segments of the channel that were quite narrow, and there were farms and small villages all along the way, below soaring, snow covered mountains. And there were long stretches of barren wild land with tall cliffs that climbed directly up out of the water. 

 

This cruise is going way too fast, with the half way point already here. And along with that, it will be another couple of days before we loose the 24 hour sunshine. 

 

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2 hours ago, TiogaCruiser said:

June 24, 2019 Tromso, Norway

 

Tromso lies south of the North Cape, but well above the Arctic Circle. It is part of a large number of islands that make up an inside passage within Norway and part of the town lies on both sides of the channel. Tromso is a tourist destination during the dark months (November through March) when people come to see the northern lights. 

 

We chose a shore excursion through the cruise line that took us about 30 minutes out of town to a large kennel where they have 160 Alaskan Huskies they train as sled dogs. The entertainment for the day was to play with the dogs, and to take some of them for a walk in the local countryside. These dogs are bred and taught to pull sleds.... which brings us to the big question:  

How do you walk a sled dog? 

 

We were given sturdy waterproof boots and large belts to cinch around our waists or upper hips that had 2 rings attached to them with heavy duty elastic. A dog was hitched up to both rings on the rig, and we were cautioned to lean backwards and use our weight to counteract the dog’s forward pulling. We walked through a bog area, up a hill to an area about a half a mile behind the kennel where there was a great view of the countryside and the surrounding mountains. As in other places we have seen, the hillsides were covered with beautiful wild flowers. On the way back it began to rain. Coming back down the hill we had to be extra careful to dig our heels into the hillside to prevent a too quick descent and/or fall. 

 

After the walk we had a lunch of open faced Norwegian style sandwiches and chocolate cake in a reproduced Sami tent (lavvo). There was a roaring fire in an open fire cooking area in the center of the tent where they made coffee and heated water for tea. Staff brought in 2 puppies who were 3 weeks old for us to cuddle and socialize. 

 

As our ship was right in town we dropped our things in our cabin and headed out to see a bit of the town. Walking around the old town, we found the church and went inside. We also found a market and took a little sidetrack through it. We have been hearing about the brown cheese that Norwegians love, and our guide had provided the name of it written down, so we were able to find it amid other cheese in the local market.

 

Then we took in the Arctic Museum, with its exhibits on Roald Amundsen and much of the early exploration and trapping in the Arctic. It was quite interesting. 

 

Sail away was followed by scenic cruising that lasted until we called it a night. Prinsendam kept the pilot onboard and took the inside passage to Narvik, which meant the scenery went on all night. (Remember, that sun is not setting up here, so we basically had all night scenic cruising.)  There were segments of the channel that were quite narrow, and there were farms and small villages all along the way, below soaring, snow covered mountains. And there were long stretches of barren wild land with tall cliffs that climbed directly up out of the water. 

 

This cruise is going way too fast, with the half way point already here. And along with that, it will be another couple of days before we loose the 24 hour sunshine. 

 

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It sounds amazing.  I would have loved the all with the dogs and cuddling the little puppies.  Pictures are fantastic as usual, and you are correct, it goes too quickly.

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How nice that there was a special "farewell" tile.  Definitely a collector's item! 

 

And Captain Albert has given a link in his blog for anyone who wants to buy a copy of that special book, so there must be a few spare...

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Oh my Tioga,  Your pictures are fantastic and your reporting is just a joy.

 

Your final Gala night dinner looks scrumptious (fitting for the Elegant Explorer).

 

Love the “final Prinsendam” tiles.  That’s a special one, for sure.

 

Really enjoying following along on your lovely adventure.

 

 

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