22nd July, 2022
With temperatures reaching 34oC during our turnaround day in Southampton, it was perhaps with sweaty relief when we put to sea that evening and pointed the ship’s head north with the Arctic our eventual destination.
Two gentle days at sea followed as we trundled at a leisurely speed towards our first scheduled stop of Alesund, in Norway. The low clouds lifted as we made our outer fjord approach in the early hours, and thankfully there was very little of that infamous Norwegian coastal rain commonly seen in these parts year-round.
Alesund is one of the largest towns on Norway’s western coast, and is interestingly built upon 3 islands. Destroyed by a fire at the outset of last century, the centre has been rebuilt since, principally with Art Nouveau architecture in mind.
Our berth today was located on the eastern-most island, and central to the city, meaning only a 5 minute walk to the centre. For the more energetic, it’s about a 15 minute walk to the foot of ‘Sukkertoppen’ (translating as “Sugar Top Mountain”) where some 500 steps up will take you to a cracking view over the city and ship (and well needed refreshment in the nearby café).
For those who weren’t so into mountaineering, there were of course more sedate tours to embark upon in which to explore the local area.
Evening time came about and it was time for the Staff Captain to manoeuvre us off the berth and about-turn back into the fjord, northbound into the Arctic Circle tomorrow…
Captain Kim Tanner
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