The Baltics and St Petersburg 2014

 

 

What's covered?

A Baltic and St Petersburg cruise had the attraction of starting and finishing in Southampton, just over an hour from home so without the long flights of last year it had even greater appeal.

After it taking a year to write up our 2013 holiday, this time I am writing as we go so that the story is ready to publish when we get home.

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Saturday 19th July - All aboard

The car parking with AB Parking was excellent. The site was opposite the cruise terminal, it had a tarmac surface, you park the car yourself and keep the keys. The site is locked while you are away. Our check-in luggage was taken from the car, we didn't even have to lift it out, and only had our carry on luggage to deal with.

At the terminal our tickets were checked and we were told we had to see the next lady for our sticker. She said that was wrong and we thought we would have to go back but the lady smiled and said "here's a yellow sticker anyway". We were escorted past the queues and straight to an empty desk and checked straight in. An excellent start!

Sunday 20th July - Bruges

Having been to Bruges before we opted for the Day on Your Own trip which meant we were coached in as close as coaches are allowed, then had a fifteen minute walk into the centre. Nearly every other shop was a chocolate shop but we were delighted to find one that sold sugar-free chocolate. I am diabetic and had only seen that before in the USA.

 

Monday 21st July

At sea.

Tuesday 22nd July - Warnemunde

One of the shore excursions was a trip to Berlin but we decided the six hour coach trip (three hours each way) was a bit much and that was the conclusion of those people who did make the trip. Instead we opted for The Duke's Castle at Schwerin.

 

Wednesay 23rd July

At sea.

Thursday 24th July - Stockholm

We chose the Stockholm and Sigtuna excursion as it took us out of the city of Stockholm. Sigtuna was the original capital and we enjoyed the walk around. After lunch we visited the Vassa Museum.

Arriving in Stockholm

 

Sigtuna - The original capital city

 

Stockholm City

 

 

The Vassa Museum

Friday 25th July

Tallinn

Saturday 26th July and Sunday 27th July

St Petersburg

 

Peterhof

 

 

St Isaac's Cathedral

 

 

Peter and Paul Fortress

 

 

Neva River Cruise

 

The Hermitage

 

Church of the Spilled Blood

 

 

Monday 28th July

Helsinki

Tuesday 29th July

At sea

Wednesday 30th July

Copenhagen

 

Thursday 31st July

At sea.

Friday 1st August

At sea.

Saturday 2nd August

Sadly an early arrival back in Southampton bringing our cruise to an end.

Credits

AB Parking Excellent location, tarmac surface, luggage taken from car, you keep the keys so you know the car is staying there and no one is borrowing it.
Celebrity Cruises

Excellent. The staff were always helpful and friendly and never failed to greet you with a good morning etc. One in particular impressed me. He served us at dinner one night and next day was on the dock with trays of squash and water for passengers returning from a hot day ashore. Without me saying a thing, he turned the tray so that water was nearest to me and said "you can't have the squash", recalling that I am diabetic and the squash was not sugar free. 2,800 passengers and he remembered that!

The food was excellent and there was always a clearly marked sugar free dessert. The waiters and waitresses also made sure I was aware of that.

The entertainment was excellent and whilst on some nights the theatre was more packed than others, there were always seats.

Everywhere on the ship was clean, it was well maintained.

Shore excursions were also well organised so that everyone went ashore in an orderly way.

This is now the cruise line I will be looking at first in the future hoping that they go where I want to.

Thank you to the staff and management of this company.

Trailfinders We now just phone Trailfinders to book our holidays. Their staff are so knowledgeable and they never rush you so that they can get to the next call. We always get a call a few days before travelling to make sure everything is in order and a few days after returning to make sure it all went as planned.
Our fellow passengers Particularly Brian and June from Sydney, Geoffrey and Ann, and Jackie and June. We enjoyed your company at dinner and around the ship.