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8th October, 2017


After a very calm and sunny day at sea yesterday, our early morning approach to the Halifax pilot station saw us encounter some light fog. With the pilot on board at 0645 the mist miraculously lifted and we then had 8 miles to weave our way to our berth. The pilot took the con for the transit and I then took over a couple of miles before the dock. With the aid of a tug this morning due to the strong SW’ly winds, we spun the ship through 90’and then glided astern towards our berth. The team on the forward and aft mooring decks were under strict instructions not to throw any line ashore until after 0801 as the local longshoremen charge significant overtime if you do, and especially on a Sunday!! With the first line at 0806 we were well in the clear. By 0830 we were all fast with the gangway read. An overcast start to the day was superseded by sunny spells through the afternoon, but with no rain it was perfect for our Guests to explore Halifax

Halifax is a lively, vibrant city and the capital of Nova Scotia. It has a fascinating Maritime Heritage and features the World’s second largest natural harbour which stretches for approximately ten miles. The city was integral in the rescue operation of the Titanic in 1912, and was again at the forefront of a Maritime Disaster when five years later in 1917 they had the “Halifax Explosion”.

Halifax has lots to see and there were 6 shore excursions on offer today including; The Best of Halifax, Halifax Highlights by Harbour Duck or Vintage Double Decker, A History of Halifax Walking Tour; and The Titanic Connection.

I decided to take to the road and head for Mount Pleasant Park, cycling round the many trails and tracks and enjoying the coastal views. With 10M covered I felt I deserved a cup of Earl Grey and some Banana Cake at a local café–lovely!!, but not the ambience of afternoon tea on board. In fact in the Britannia Lounge today it was a French afternoon tea with a fine selection of French pastries and music by our resident duo, and all in memory of Titanic A La Carte Pastry Chef, Henri Jaillet.

With all on board at 1930 we slipped our lines and headed out leaving the skyline of Halifax in our wake. 90 minutes later we were clear of the port approaches and set an E’ly course for the start of our 2590 mile Transatlantic Crossing back to Southampton

Captain Julian Burgess

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