Velkommen from Norway

Trip Start Dec 23, 2012
Trip End Jan 23, 2013

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Where I stayed
Hurtigruten Ship

Flag of Norway  , North Norway,
Monday, January 7, 2013

Temp -7C (wind chill factor -20C)

Arrived at Kirkenes at 10.30am (Norway time, had to turn my watch back an hour) to catch the Hurtigruten ship.  This is not a cruise ship, it takes cargo as well and is a ferry for the locals.  We stop at different ports along the way, sometimes for more an hour and sometimes only 15minutes.  The weather has been perfect, clear skies and calm seas. 

A super lunch buffet was on offer and I indulged myself seeing I hadn't eaten properly since yesterday.

About 2 hours into the voyage the ship started moving up and down and I did feel nausea. Luckily I had taken Travelcalm tablets during lunch otherwise I'd probably see my lunch again :/  Dinner was a set menu which I attempted but really didn't have the stomach for. One because of the movement of the ship, and two, it was crab and roe for entree (didn't even try it because I felt like my stomach was doing somersaults) and the main was reindeer (I did try this even though I don't like bloody meat).  I realise now I need to eat up at lunch as dinner will always be a set menu with local cuisine.  I'll try anything once but reindeer are too cute to eat.

As the voyage continued I started to get me 'sea legs' and I'm not feeling sick anymore.  I'm actually quite enjoying the up/down feeling.  It makes your head go a bit stupid and sometimes my ears pop but overall I'm doing really well.  We are really blessed with perfect weather.

At 4pm we disembarked at Vardo to see a medieval fort close to port.  I didn't attempt to take photos because it was already quite dark but it was a very surreal experience.

I slept in my clothes because at any time of the night if the crew see the Aurora they announce it.  Everyone makes a mad dash to the top deck in hope of seeing it.  This Aurora is proving to be very elusive.  I had imagined that every night we would see it, but not the case.  It's literally pot luck.  So I continue to cross my fingers in desperate hope I will experience these Northern Lights.  We only got a wake up call once at 12am, but it was so quick that by the time I made it to the top deck it was over.

Sleeping is the biggest hazard because I feel like doing it all the time. The rocking of the ship and the many hours of darkness has a very calming effect.  Need lots of coffee to stay alert.

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Cristina on

Hey Sonia! Talking about coffee, you haven't told us about the coffee. Does it meet our Italian standards? ;)

sonia72 on

Coffee is really crap, just far too watery & weak & often bitter. I remember when I travelled around Europe with mum all the countries had shit coffee except Italy, so we overdosed on coffee there.

Actually, tell a lie, I've had one good coffee in Kemi, Finland. The lady at the bakery was fascinated that I was from Australia so she made me an extra special one. Still a bit weak but not bitter. Locals tend to drink percolated that sits in one of those glass jugs on a hot plate. Only when I'm desperate in the morning will I touch that one.

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