Showing posts from January, 2015


One of my favourite places to watch ships sailing from Bergen is from the Askøy bridge. From here you can see these enormous vessels sailing directly beneath you as they make their way out of the city through Byfjorden. The following photos of P&O's Arcadia were taken on 14/05/2014.
Built in Italy in 2004, Arcadia was intended to enter service as Queen Victoria for Cunard line. However, shortly before her launch parent company Carnival made the decision to transfer the new ship. It was felt that further modifications to the design were needed to make the new Queen Victoria suitable for regular transatlantic service, and so the opportunity was taken to add capacity to the popular P&O brand.

As such, Arcadia has retained many of the interior design components more familiar to Cunard passengers (notably the art deco carpets and extensive wooden panelling throughout) as well as inheriting the modified QE2 style funnel intended for the Queen Victoria
The side-by-side compari…

Marco Polo

Last spring (before I started this blog) I took these photos of CMV's Marco Polo departing Bergen after her call to the city on 28/03/2014.

The photos were taken from the bathing platform at the tip of the Nordes peninsula, a great spot to watch ships sailing from the city.
Having been in service since 1965, Marco Polo has had a long and varied career, which is discussed in more depth in my previous blog post, with photos taken during her call to Bergen later last summer.

Marco Polo is something of a regular visitor to Bergen. With six calls scheduled throughout the 2015 season, she is sure to appear on this blog again soon.

Arctic Sunrise & Jamaica Bay

A look back through the archives brings us to these photos, taken on 28/07/2013 when Greenpeace's MV Arctic Sunrise and the superyacht MY Jamaica Bay made an unlikely pairing whilst alongside in the city centre.

Built in Norway in 1975 as a seismic research vessel, in 1995 Arctic Sunrise was bought by Greenpeace for use as a campaign ship, with her ice-strengthened hull making her suitable for operation in the Arctic. It was there that, just a few weeks after these photos were taken, she found herself in the middle of a major international incident. Arctic Sunrise was seized by the Russian coastguard, with all 30 activists on board held by Russian authorities. Eventually the situation was resolved, with all activists released and allowed to return home. However, Arctic Sunrise remains a controversial vessel.
MY Jamaica Bay has arguably had a happier service history. Built in Germany in 2010, she has a length of 60m and can accommodate up to 12 guests. She operates worldwide, and i…

Queen Mary 2 - Photo Tour and Voyage Report (Part 3)

The final part of this photo tour will be a lot less wordy than the others. This post contains a set of photos I took during a fantastic sunset as I walked around QM2's wonderful open decks.
I will leave these without captions or description, as they predominantly speak for themselves. The series starts at the promenade on deck 7, before moving through the tiered aft decks to the top of the ship, and then back down again to complete a circuit of the promenade. 

Queen Mary 2 - Photo Tour and Voyage Report (Part 2)

The tour continues with the Britannia Restaurant. The main dining room on board, this is used by all passengers travelling in standard cabins, whilst the smaller Princess Grill and Queens Grill restaurants are reserved for those travelling in suites.

The Britannia Restaurant really is an impressive room, with a large double-height central section surrounded by tall columns, and tiered upper levels joined by a sweeping staircase at the forward end of the room.

The restaurant is open for a la carte breakfast and lunch with an open seating. For dinner, tables and dining times are assigned to guests in each stateroom, and remain unchanged throughout the crossing (though we were able to switch to a larger, more attractive table after speaking with the Maitre d' on the first afternoon). Sitting at a larger table provides a great opportunity to get to know your fellow diners during the trip. Dinner soon becomes the main event of the days on board.

Once all the food has started to settle, …

Queen Mary 2 - Photo Tour and Voyage Report (Part 1)

Earlier in January we boarded Cunard's flagship Queen Mary 2 in New York to make the transatlantic crossing to Southampton. This is something I have long wanted to do, and the experience certainly didn't disappoint.
I had originally intended to complete a comprehensive photo tour of her passenger decks. Unfortunately, during the crossing, time slipped away (with more than one late night to blame) so I am left with the following photos which I took as I made my way around the ship throughout our 7 days on board. I hope they still give a good overall impression of her public spaces.
We boarded QM2 in Brooklyn. Getting a taxi to the port was quick and easy, and we were on board around 30 minutes after arriving at the terminal.

Happily our cabins were ready immediately, so we headed straight for our sheltered balcony cabin on deck 4 to drop off our hand luggage and take a look at our home for the next week.
The cabin was calm, clean and inviting. The bedding was comfortable and t…

Ships in New York - Norwegian Gem

During a recent break from Bergen I visited New York, and was lucky to be in the right place at the right time as Norwegian Gem departed Manhattan and sailed past Battery Park. These photos were taken on 02/01/2015.

Built in 2006/07 in Papenburg, Germany, Norwegian Gem is the last of Norwegian Cruise Line's Jewel Class of ships. She can carry around 2300 passengers, served by a crew of 1150.

She is very similar in appearance to Norwegian Star, which called into Bergen last September, although these two ships technically belong to different design classes.

Norwegian Gem is currently operating out of New York, with a series of round-trips to various locations along the eastern coast of the USA and sailings to Bermuda.

Her departure coincided with a beautiful January sunset, making for really nice views as she passed the Statue of Liberty and headed out to sea to begin her cruise.