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30th July, 2013


There are some pilots who are very quiet and just get on with the job, there are others that can do the job, but are intent to have a conversation at the same time. Often this is, in the main, only one way. The Dutch gentleman (Yes he was) who came aboard at 0530 was of the latter, friendly enough, but my ears were still ringing an hour or so later from the deep guttural sounds of his voice.

We berthed just below the bulk cement berth and opposite the bulk coal storage, not the most elegant of sites, but the city have great plans for a new cruise berth on the opposite bank of the river, close by the new Titanic heritage centre which has become extremely popular and is, apparently, a ‘must see’ attraction. Needless to say the pilot gave me his opinion of the proposed new berth location as well. 


We had well over 200 passengers who opted to take the all day tour to view the ‘Spectacular Antrim Coast and Giants Causeway’. Taking the opportunity to board the shuttle bus into the city, I took a stroll round and nipped into the chemist in order to replace my now deceased electric shaver. Despite the current financial restraints Belfast has worked hard to replace its tarnished image and there has obviously been much investment to encourage growth. Tourists are made to feel very welcome and there is a sort of ‘We are open for business’ feel about the city.

Heavy showers came later and the returning  passengers had a very interesting tour, on which I was told, it only rained when they were in the coach. How organised is that? 

The opinions expressed are those of the author and are not held by Saga unless specifically stated.

The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal, medical or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Always obtain independent, professional advice for your own particular situation.