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18th August, 2018


Another comfortable overnight passage at a somewhat a more leisurely pace than our passage to Liepaja yesterday. Gdynia is working port in that they don’t have a cruise terminal (yet!) and you park next to piles of coal; but is a fabulous port of call. What is on offer in Gdynia is quite special, anyway, I digress.

The sun was up, thankfully that happened, at 0520-ish to reveal a rather cloudy day; the forecast was mixed as we made our way towards the Pilot station. I have attached a photograph of which you might think ‘odd’. It’s the one of the far shoreline showing a pristine white beach. The photo is zoomed-in, so not of great quality, sorry about that, it's from my phone! Anyway, I was astonished to see this beach off Gdynia, who would of thought. Pristine white; I thought it was worth sharing.

The Pilot embarked at 0630, as the Safety Officer, Matt, took the Conn for the berthing. A reasonably straight forward manoeuvre, other than the berth is only 800 meters inside the breakwaters and you need to be sure you can stop your ship before you meet with the concrete! With a helpful slight breeze onto the berth, Matt had the ship parked in good time.

You know when the port of call has great appeal is when you see the tour coaches lined up on the quay; and we had a lots of Guests on tour today. The day did turn out to be a bit mixed in the morning but cleared up a treat before noon and we had a lovely sunny-ish afternoon. There was an air-show over Gdynia today, due to start early evening, so right on our departure. We witnessed some of the practise flying during the day, but alas, we would be sailing before the air show got underway.

This is our last port, other than the Kiel Canal, of the cruise and it was soon time to head back out to sea. There was a question mark about the Kiel Canal because one of the Lock chambers was closed for maintenance on the day of our transit (20th) which had, in the past caused significant delays. I had the option to go around the top of Demark, Kattegat and Skagerrak if I thought the Canal transit was at risk. Anyway, that is tomorrows challenge.

All tours back and the ship cleared to sail, we left the berth, swung in the basin and exited the port. Debarking the Pilot at 1915, we were on our way to the Kiel Canal.

I was due to be ‘performing’ on stage with John Parton and, my good lady, taking part in Call my Bluff, what a hoot that always is! Leigh, my rock, was nervous about the thought, but hey, I’ll update you later. Call my Bluff is a very late night and the Guests love it - thankfully, for me, day at sea tomorrow!

Captain Stuart Horne

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