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27th May, 2018


After the superb call at Rosendal and then sailing out of Hardangerfjord we entered Byfyorden at 0600 for our run into Stavanger. Our pilots returned to duty and helped guide us into the port. It was a beautiful morning and Safety Officer Matt conducted the manoeuver – he did a great job and it is clear he has handled ships before. After swinging in the inner harbour we “backed” down to our berth and were all fast alongside by 0745. We had the new cruise berth right by the old town which was fabulous for our guests.

Stavanger has always prospered from the riches of the sea. During the 19th century huge harvests of brisling and herring established it as the sardine capital of the world. A resident is still called a Siddis – the S from Stavanger and the Iddis which means “sardine label”. The city’s symbol is the key of a sardine can. While other towns in Norway have suffered with the decline of the fishing industry, Stavanger has kept its economy booming by diversifying, first into shipbuilding and then into oil. These contrasting industries have created a city of two halves – a modern area of high-rise buildings and a historic centre with cobbled streets and old wooden houses.

With lots of choice from our shore excursions including A Slice of Paradise, Stavanger City and Highlights, Lysefjord Boat Trip, The Occupation of Stavanger, and a Helicopter Flightseeing over Pulpit Rock, there certainly was something for everyone. I headed out around 1400 with my cycle buddy Rico. We had a great ride around the edge of several lakes but on the way back found lots of roads closed. It was then we stumbled across “Hammer Stavanger” which is a professional cycle race. It is the second race organized by Tour des Fjords AS in 2018 and is a revolutionary team-based format featuring three races on fan-friendly circuits. It was fantastic to see the various cycle teams pass at close range at unbelievable speeds.

With everyone on board we slipped our lines shortly thereafter and then headed back out through the fjords. With the pilots away we set course for Dover. I hosted my Farewell Cocktail party, which was a great event with everyone in such great spirits.

Captain Julian Burgess

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