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Baltic cruise with the Vision of the Seas (will be slightly picture heavy...)

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    Baltic cruise with the Vision of the Seas (will be slightly picture heavy...)

    Finally I was able to go on another cruise. Had been looking at cheap cruises from Oslo for a while before deciding on this one. I travelled with my father, whose a retired air force officer.

    The itinerary for the cruise was:
    June 2nd: Oslo, departure 17:00
    June 3rd: At sea
    June 4th: At sea
    June 5th: St Petersburg, arrival 7:00, departure 23:59
    June 6th: Tallinn, arrival 10:00, departure 17:00
    June 7th: At sea
    June 8th: Copenhagen, arrival 9:00, departure 15:00
    June 9th: Oslo, arrival 7:00

    Due to the pilot strike the ship left from Gothenburg, Sweden in stead of Oslo. Checking in was done at the quay in Oslo, we were then sent by bus to Gothenburg. Over all an interesting itinerary, as I have never been in Russia before, haven't been in Estonia either for that matter, also havent been in Copenhagen for 20 years, and I'm just 25, so...

    First I'd like to say it was a fantastic trip, and I enjoyed it properly. It's always regrettable having to leave a ship, but this one was pretty tough. Compared to my last cruising experience this was slightly different. Many of the things on board are the same, especially with regards to activities and such, but the over all experience was different here on this smaller ship.

    For this cruise, the Vision of the Seas was nowhere near it's full capacity, I heard something along the lines of 1600 passengers, capacity is 2416, so she felt very empty late in the evenings and the number of crew members was obviously measured to her maximum capacity, so service was swift. Captain on this cruise was the danish lady Lis Lauritzen, over all very smooth navigation from her, she also kept us up to date on what was going on with regards to navigation and weather.

    The ship itself is a slightly smaller and older one compared to the Adventure of the Seas I cruised on the last time around. That said, I have to confess that I'm more comfortable with this size; much easier to familiarize yourself with and much more intimate. If you meet someone one day you're very likely to meet them again later on. It's not like the Adventure, on which I felt people "came and went", and I didn't see them again.

    Starting off with two consecutive days at sea was a little bit tough on my father, so he got a little bit bored on the way to St Petersburg. Somehow I always seemed to make the time go by; walking around with my camera, taking pictures certainly helped here... I also never managed to get into any of the pools or jacuzzis, for some reason, could be the cold climate that I felt never invited me to it.

    The food in the restaurants was good, just like last time, although the menu in the dining room is starting to look strangely familiar. That said, the deserts the make are unbelievably good, dangerously good, so good I think I put on about two kilos of weight during that cruise...

    So, over all it was a fantastic experience and I would definitely go cruising on the Vision of the Seas later on...

    Now to the part I'm sure you all are waiting for, the pictures... I'll start with some exterior shots of the ship from earlier this year:





    Now some onboard exterior shots, first up, the pool deck:



    The same view at night:



    The starboard bridge wing seen when departing Tallinn. To the right you can see captain Lis Lauritzen.



    More pictures will come later...
    Olympus user
    E-M1, E-M5
    w/ Lots of new and old (adapted lenses)...

    Hurtigruten ships traveled on:
    MS Richard With, MS Nordnorge, MS Nordkapp, MS Nordlys, MS Finnmarken, MS Midnatsol (Both old and new)

    Cruise ships traveled on:
    MS Sunbird, former RCI Song of America, now MS Louis Olympia (August 2002)
    MS Adventure of the Seas (October 2010)
    MS Vision of the Seas (June 2012)
    MS Enchantment of the Seas (October 2016)

    #2
    Re: Baltic cruise with the Vision of the Seas (will be slightly picture heavy...)

    There was one night we had a very beautiful sunset, so I took quite a few shots then...

    Deck 10, as far forward as you can get, looking back, taken with a fisheye lens to get that wide angle effect:


    The view backwards from behind the Viking Crown Lounge:


    The funnel and fitness center:


    The sun deck and Viking Crown Lounge in sunset:






    There will be more...
    Olympus user
    E-M1, E-M5
    w/ Lots of new and old (adapted lenses)...

    Hurtigruten ships traveled on:
    MS Richard With, MS Nordnorge, MS Nordkapp, MS Nordlys, MS Finnmarken, MS Midnatsol (Both old and new)

    Cruise ships traveled on:
    MS Sunbird, former RCI Song of America, now MS Louis Olympia (August 2002)
    MS Adventure of the Seas (October 2010)
    MS Vision of the Seas (June 2012)
    MS Enchantment of the Seas (October 2016)

    Comment


      #3
      Re: Baltic cruise with the Vision of the Seas (will be slightly picture heavy...)

      Now, that's a cool sunset. The whole place seems deserted, where's all the people?

      Comment


        #4
        Re: Baltic cruise with the Vision of the Seas (will be slightly picture heavy...)

        Some more exterior shots:











        Olympus user
        E-M1, E-M5
        w/ Lots of new and old (adapted lenses)...

        Hurtigruten ships traveled on:
        MS Richard With, MS Nordnorge, MS Nordkapp, MS Nordlys, MS Finnmarken, MS Midnatsol (Both old and new)

        Cruise ships traveled on:
        MS Sunbird, former RCI Song of America, now MS Louis Olympia (August 2002)
        MS Adventure of the Seas (October 2010)
        MS Vision of the Seas (June 2012)
        MS Enchantment of the Seas (October 2016)

        Comment


          #5
          Re: Baltic cruise with the Vision of the Seas (will be slightly picture heavy...)

          Originally posted by Tommi View Post
          Now, that's a cool sunset. The whole place seems deserted, where's all the people?
          Like I said she was sailing with with just around 1600 guests, so at no point did she feel crowded... But most of the reason why she was almost deserted outside was that firstly it was cold that day, nice weather but a very chilly wind, so I guess most opted to stay inside. And, since the ship had adjusted it's time to St Petersburg that sunset was very late, with an early morning in St Petersburg (most of the tours started between 7:15 and 8:00 AM) approaching for most guests onboard they had probably gone to bed.

          But yes, all in all, the decks were never crowded, too cold for that...

          Now, on to the shows, first up a broadway style show:





          Then the Russian folklore show:









          This was very difficult to photograph, very quick movement and extremely poor lighting, so the shots aren't the best quality...
          Last edited by Eirik; June 13th, 2012, 17:05.
          Olympus user
          E-M1, E-M5
          w/ Lots of new and old (adapted lenses)...

          Hurtigruten ships traveled on:
          MS Richard With, MS Nordnorge, MS Nordkapp, MS Nordlys, MS Finnmarken, MS Midnatsol (Both old and new)

          Cruise ships traveled on:
          MS Sunbird, former RCI Song of America, now MS Louis Olympia (August 2002)
          MS Adventure of the Seas (October 2010)
          MS Vision of the Seas (June 2012)
          MS Enchantment of the Seas (October 2016)

          Comment


            #6
            Re: Baltic cruise with the Vision of the Seas (will be slightly picture heavy...)

            Now on to the ports of call, first up St Petersburg:

            For this port we went for a nice long tour. The "Catherina Palace and Neva River cruise". The Catherina Palace is located outside downtown St Petersburg in the prefecture of Pushkin. This palace is also known as the "Summer Palace" as it served as the summer residence of the Tsar Family. When it comes to the palace itself and it's interiors, pretty much everything you see that looks like gold, is gold...

            The Romanov family monogram:


            The mirror-room or reception room if you like:


            Catherine the great's private reception room:


            The dining room:


            Catherine the great's regalia:


            The back door's facade:


            (Continued...)
            Olympus user
            E-M1, E-M5
            w/ Lots of new and old (adapted lenses)...

            Hurtigruten ships traveled on:
            MS Richard With, MS Nordnorge, MS Nordkapp, MS Nordlys, MS Finnmarken, MS Midnatsol (Both old and new)

            Cruise ships traveled on:
            MS Sunbird, former RCI Song of America, now MS Louis Olympia (August 2002)
            MS Adventure of the Seas (October 2010)
            MS Vision of the Seas (June 2012)
            MS Enchantment of the Seas (October 2016)

            Comment


              #7
              Re: Baltic cruise with the Vision of the Seas (will be slightly picture heavy...)

              A pavilion adjacent to the palace mainly used for parties, and being able to walk outside, despite rain...


              Yes, the backside of the palace again:


              One of the bathing cottages:


              The roof and towers of the Tsar family's private church:


              From the Neva river cruise, this is the battle cruiser Aurora, which is famous for signalling the start of the October revolution in 1917 by firing one blank shot against the Winter Palace:


              A cathedral seen from the river cruise boat:
              Olympus user
              E-M1, E-M5
              w/ Lots of new and old (adapted lenses)...

              Hurtigruten ships traveled on:
              MS Richard With, MS Nordnorge, MS Nordkapp, MS Nordlys, MS Finnmarken, MS Midnatsol (Both old and new)

              Cruise ships traveled on:
              MS Sunbird, former RCI Song of America, now MS Louis Olympia (August 2002)
              MS Adventure of the Seas (October 2010)
              MS Vision of the Seas (June 2012)
              MS Enchantment of the Seas (October 2016)

              Comment


                #8
                Re: Baltic cruise with the Vision of the Seas (will be slightly picture heavy...)

                Now on to Tallinn, Estonia. For this port of call we decided on a guided city walk through the old town.

                Lots of dramatic tone here, this is the old fortress adjacent to the houses of parliament in Tallinn:


                The large Russian Orthodox cathedral located on top of the hill, also in dramatic tone, I really like how this turned out:


                Inside the cathedral:


                A fisheye view of the old town of Tallinn:


                A narrow alley down in the old town of Tallinn:


                Some of the old town of Tallin seen from deck 10 of the Vision of the Seas:


                (Copenhagen is coming up later...)
                Olympus user
                E-M1, E-M5
                w/ Lots of new and old (adapted lenses)...

                Hurtigruten ships traveled on:
                MS Richard With, MS Nordnorge, MS Nordkapp, MS Nordlys, MS Finnmarken, MS Midnatsol (Both old and new)

                Cruise ships traveled on:
                MS Sunbird, former RCI Song of America, now MS Louis Olympia (August 2002)
                MS Adventure of the Seas (October 2010)
                MS Vision of the Seas (June 2012)
                MS Enchantment of the Seas (October 2016)

                Comment


                  #9
                  Re: Baltic cruise with the Vision of the Seas (will be slightly picture heavy...)

                  Lot's of great pictures Eirik. I particularly like when you get some of those shots so incredible sharp!

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Re: Baltic cruise with the Vision of the Seas (will be slightly picture heavy...)

                    Great pictures, enjoyed them all.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Re: Baltic cruise with the Vision of the Seas (will be slightly picture heavy...)

                      Fantastic report Eirik! Very interesting written and with beautiful pictures! I am enjoying this very much!
                      Funny for me are the size comparisons, describing a ship with capacity of 2.400 people as smaller and cosy. And the amount of 1.600 passengers as never overcrowded. Well that's me, regarding MS Nordnorge as huge and filled up with maximal 100 pax as comfortable...

                      Is is really great to have the opportunity to learn more about the other side of the cruise business, which for sure has an own fascination!
                      Lofoten '07 ...... Nordnorge '11

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Re: Baltic cruise with the Vision of the Seas (will be slightly picture heavy...)

                        Originally posted by Ralf__ View Post
                        Fantastic report Eirik! Very interesting written and with beautiful pictures! I am enjoying this very much!
                        Funny for me are the size comparisons, describing a ship with capacity of 2.400 people as smaller and cosy. And the amount of 1.600 passengers as never overcrowded. Well that's me, regarding MS Nordnorge as huge and filled up with maximal 100 pax as comfortable...

                        Is is really great to have the opportunity to learn more about the other side of the cruise business, which for sure has an own fascination!
                        Thank you Ralf...

                        The Vision of the Seas only felt crowded at three points during the voyage: Before, during and after the muster drill just before departure. Compared to the 137000 GRT, 3200 passenger Adventure of the Seas (which sailed at full capacity that time), I'd say this, at 78000 GRT (with just 1600 passengers) qualifies as cosy in comparison... :P

                        I almost forgot the interior, I don't have much, but there's some, these two are from the Centrum:



                        Olympus user
                        E-M1, E-M5
                        w/ Lots of new and old (adapted lenses)...

                        Hurtigruten ships traveled on:
                        MS Richard With, MS Nordnorge, MS Nordkapp, MS Nordlys, MS Finnmarken, MS Midnatsol (Both old and new)

                        Cruise ships traveled on:
                        MS Sunbird, former RCI Song of America, now MS Louis Olympia (August 2002)
                        MS Adventure of the Seas (October 2010)
                        MS Vision of the Seas (June 2012)
                        MS Enchantment of the Seas (October 2016)

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Re: Baltic cruise with the Vision of the Seas (will be slightly picture heavy...)

                          Eirik, I am absolutely LOVING your photos! I love the clouds in Estonia--and the ones from the Catherine Palace bring back such memories... BRILLIANT interiors!

                          It's so neat to see the inside of the ship as well.....MORE MORE!!!

                          Bravo!

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Re: Baltic cruise with the Vision of the Seas (will be slightly picture heavy...)

                            Oh Eirik, I’ve only just caught up on your holiday photos! I’d immediately thought of Elizabeth when I saw the Catherine Palace, and I had to laugh when I reached Ralf’s ship size comparisons as such thoughts had entered my mind too!
                            Just trying to remember how many folk were aboard Discovery when I did a similar, somewhat longer, version of your trip just over a year ago. I seem to think it was not dissimilar to hurtigrute Trollfjord on a summer trip.
                            Of your ship, #2/5 is my favourite with the sky, the special quality of light, and those perfectly placed figures in the sunlight. It almost has a painterly quality…like an artist/architect’s idea for a cruise ship. Beautiful.

                            You sound just like Tommi who also isn’t always completely satisfied with his show photography, but I think you both achieve absolute marvels in these situations.

                            Nice view of Aurora.
                            In Tallinn, E has already noted those dramatic skies. Whereas all three of us had deep blue sky in St Petersburg, despite my recollection of the local guide saying it usually rains a lot there!

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Re: Baltic cruise with the Vision of the Seas (will be slightly picture heavy...)

                              Great photos Eirik. Brings back very happy memories of previous visits to Tallinn in particular - lovely place. Thanks for sharing with us!
                              Cheers,

                              Mark.

                              www.pologlover.co.uk

                              Comment

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