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Saga Cruises

Bright Lights in Norway

Saga Pearl II departing Portsmouth

2
  • Full Board Full board
  • No fly No fly

Prepare to be spellbound

Seek out Norway's mesmerising Northern Lights and enjoy a host of active winter experiences such as skiing in Narvik, a husky-sled ride and sleeping overnight in a cosy Arctic pod! We've planned an overnight sojourn in Alta too. Known as the ‘Town of the Northern Lights’, there's an included an excursion here to increase your odds of sighting the aurora borealis. You can also look forward to visiting the bustling fishing town of Kålvag, which is a new port for Saga.

Inspiring experiences to enjoy… An exhilarating dog sled ride followed by a night beneath the Arctic sky in a cosy sleeping pod, an included excursion to look out for the Northern Lights, a beginners' ski lesson in Narvik and a boat safari to photograph white-tailed eagles.

Saga price includes...



View Full Itinerary

Portsmouth

Embark Saga Pearl II.

Depart 1600.

Portsmouth is one of the most densely populated cities in Southern England, and is unusual as most of its built-up area occupies Portsea Island, linked to the mainland by road and rail bridges. Although there is a Roman fort at nearby Portchester, occupied later by the Saxons and Normans, there was no settlement on the site of Portsmouth at the time of the 1086 Domesday Book. The town developed in medieval times and received its first charter in 1194 from King Richard I; soon afterwards it became a major naval base. It has the world’s oldest dry dock, and is home to several famous ships, including HMS Victory, HMS Warrior and the Mary Rose, raised from the Solent in 1982. Portsmouth remains an important naval base and is home to a large proportion of the British service fleet. The waterfront area is now dominated by the Spinnaker Tower, 560 feet high, the United Kingdom’s tallest building outside London. Other things to see in the city include the house where Charles Dickens was born, and the City Museum, which contains a permanent exhibition devoted to another famous writer, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, who lived in the town.

FactFile

Population 205,400 (approximate)
Language English
Currency Pound sterling
Time Difference N/A
Climate An oceanic climate, with cool winters and mild to warm summers.
Ship berths at Portsmouth International Port
Distance from Centre ½-mile
Distance from gangway to coach Coaches collect passengers immediately outside the ship. However, on returning from an excursion, passengers must walk through security at the terminal building.

Useful Information

Shopping The nearest shops to the terminal are in Gunwharf Quays, near the Spinnaker Tower.
Shopping Opening Hours Most shops are open Monday to Friday 0900-2000, Saturday 0900-1900 and Sunday 1100-1700.
Post Office The main Post Office is in Slindon Street, near Portsmouth & Southsea railway station.
Tourist Office The Tourist Information Office is on Clarence Esplanade. Telephone: 023 9282 6722.
How to Phone Home For the UK dial the full STD code followed by the subscriber's number.
Emergency Services Dial 999.
Banks All main UK banks have branches in the city centre, and there are ATMs in the Cruise Terminal.

Spend the day at sea.

Spend the day at sea.

Bergen

Arrive 0800. Depart 1600.

Surrounded by mountains and sparkling fjords, the waterside city of Bergen has a spectacular setting. There has been a settlement here since medieval times and the colourful waterfront buildings of the Hanseatic wharf, known as Bryggen, are testament to its fascinating history of trade. As Norway’s best known medieval settlement, the Bryggen is listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. Our comprehensive selection of excursions allows you to discover the many sides of Bergen, such as the fish market and narrow cobbled streets, as well as stunning views of the city from the summit of Mt Fløyen. Alternatively, those who have visited the city previously may like to experience one of the tours that travel further afield. Just 300 yards from the main piers, you will find the Fortress Museum (Fesningsmuseum), which has an interesting collection of objects related to World War II.

FactFile

Population 280,000 (approximate)
Language Norwegian
Currency Norwegian Kroner
Time Difference UK+1
Climate Temperate with frequent rain
Ship berths at Bontelabo or Jekteviken Cruise Terminal, or Skolten Pier
Distance from Centre Up to half-a-mile
Distance from gangway to coach Less than 100 yards

Useful Information

Shopping Shops can be found along the Hanseatic Wharf and at the Galleriet Shopping Centre.
Shopping Opening Hours Open from Monday to Saturday from 1000-2000. A limited number of shops are open on Sundays.
Post Office Bergen Sentrum Postkontor, Småstrandgaten 3. Open Monday to Friday 0900-1800 and Saturday 1000-1500.
Tourist Office The Turistinformasjonen Bergen is located on the 1st Floor of the new Mathallen indoor fishmarket at Strandkaien 3. Opening hours are 0830-2000.
How to Phone Home For the UK dial 00 44 followed by the full STD number, omitting the first zero.
Emergency Services Dial 113 for an ambulance, 112 for the police and 110 for the fire service.
Banks Forex Bank at Strandkaien 2B is close to the Fish Market and Tourist Office. Open Monday to Friday 0900-1900 and Saturday 1000-1730. ATMs are available.

Excursions

Starting from the pier, your coach takes you into Bergen city centre. You pass Bergen’s historic Bryggen waterfront, with its colourful old Hanseatic warehouses, and contiune past the well- known fish market, now housed in a stunning new glass building, before continuing to the Kode Museum, one of the largest art galleries in Scandinavia. This museum consists of four separate buildings: Kode 1, Kode 2, Kode 3 and Kode 4, which are located along Rasmus Meyers Allée in cental Bergen, near the railway station and the small ornamental lake known as Lille Lungegårdsvannet. Your guide will take you to Kode 4, where you can see the Rasmus Meyer Collection and a fine selection of works by Edvard Munch. Among the highlights are paintings from the Golden Age of Norwegian art, as well as reconstructions of historic house interiors from the Bergen area. Your ticket includes admission to all four parts of the Museum - Kode 1, 2, 3 and 4, so you can spend your time as you wish. You may like to visit the exhibitions of Silver Treasure and art loaned by Her Majesty Queen Sonja of Norway, both of which are at Kode 1, about 250 metres from Kode 4. After about one hour and 40 minutes at the museum, your coach will take you back to the ship.

To visit Kode 4, you will need to walk about three-quarters of a mile on level ground, with about ten steps inside the building. If you wish to visit the other sections of the museum, additional walking will be required. Comfortable shoes are recommended, and you should wear warm clothing and a waterproof jacket or coat. Edvard Munch - The Gangway (1903)

Go sightseeing around the beautiful Hardanger region on this excursion. First take a short orientation drive through Bergen, passing the fish and flower markets, the 13th-century Bergenshus Fortress, medieval King Håkon’s Hall and the Rosenkrantz Tower. Leaving the city behind, your scenic journey cuts through a variety of landscapes following the Hardangerfjord and passes through quaint market towns along the way to Hardanger. After passing the Kvamskogen mountain plateau and Fossen Bratte waterfall you will pause at a second waterfall, Steinsdalsfossen, where you can actually walk behind the curtain of water without getting wet. Your drive continues to the village of Øystese. Hardanger is renowned as a prime fruit-growing region, and is especially prized for its apples, which have been growing here since the 14th century. You can admire the fruit farms on the hillside of the fjord. At a local hotel by the fjord you will enjoy refreshments of coffee and apple cake, before returning via the same scenic route to Bergen.

Although this tour requires just a few yards of walking, some of it is over uneven ground with a handful of steps and thresholds. In addition, if Steinsdalsfossen Waterfall is not frozen, you may have the opportunity to walk behind it. Extra care should be taken as this is a 200-yard walk, up a steeply sloped path that is likely to be very slippery. You should wear warm clothing, a hat, scarf and gloves along with comfortable, flat-soled walking shoes. Views will depend on the weather. Hardanger, still as beautiful in winter. Don't forget your camera!

This interesting tour reveals the legacy of Bergen's most famous son, the world-renowned composer Edvard Grieg, who was born in the city in 1843. Begin by travelling into Bergen’s suburbs passing King Håkon’s Hall, the Rosenkrantz Tower, the colourful Bryggen area and the fish market. Continue to the village of Paradis to visit Troldhaugen, which was Grieg’s home from 1885 until his death in 1907. Enjoy a guided tour of the beautifully-furnished villa which has been preserved just as it was when the composer died, with many of his possessions, including his Steinway piano, still in situ. In the concert hall next to the villa, attend a piano recital of Grieg’s music, before heading back to your ship.

This tour involves walking a minimum of 500 yards at Troldhaugen. There are also around a dozen steps up to the front door of the villa. You should wear warm clothing, a hat, scarf and gloves along with flat comfortable walking shoes. Winter view of Troldhaugen, Grieg's home

This panoramic excursion starts with a drive through Sandviken or 'Sandy Bay', where you can see many charming white wooden buildings built in the traditional Bergen style. On your return pass beautiful St Mary’s Church, the oldest building in Bergen and one of the few Romanesque buildings in Norway. Then take a funicular ride to a height of 1,000 feet up Mount Fløyen, one of the seven mountains that surround Bergen, for a bird's eye view of the city below. Discover the well-known fish market, now housed in a stunning new glass building, before continuing to the Nordnes Peninsula for a photo-stop at the old customs pier. Next, travel past the Bergen Aquarium: near here you can glimpse a typical narrow Bergen street, known as a 'smug'. Pass Bergen Theatre and drive into the Hakonsgaten for a glimpse of St John's Church. Your tour finishes with a drive past the Grieg Hall, the busy Danmarksplass intersection, Haukeland University Hospital and Kalfaret, a residential area with many charming old buildings.

Whilst walking on this excursion is mainly at your discretion, there is a 100-yard walk with a few steps to access the funicular. However, a lift is available at both the top and bottom stations. No other entrances are included on this tour. You should wear warm clothing, a hat, scarf and gloves along with flat comfortable walking shoes. Views from Mount Fløyen may be spoilt by inclement weather. Depending on traffic, the sights may be seen in a different order. Mount Fløyen Funicular in the snow (© Bergen Tourist Authority)

Åndalsnes

Arrive 0800. Depart 1630.

A small town in Norway’s fjord country, Åndalsnes is a gateway to the rugged wilderness of the Romsdalfjord. Known as the 'village between the mountains and the fjords', it typifies Norway's striking natural beauty with its setting on a promontory lined by alps and set at the mouth of the Rauma River. The town itself is tucked under the lofty mountain peaks, backed by lush, green scenery. Nearby is the impressive Trollveggen, or 'Troll Wall', which at 6,000 feet is Europe's highest vertical cliff face and is often topped by cloud. The precipice is said to be the ultimate trial for rock climbers, who regularly flock here to accept the challenge. Åndalsnes is also the terminus of the famous Rauma Railway which runs 70 miles alongside the emerald-green Rauma river and through some of Norway’s most spectacular scenery to Dombås (2160 feet above sea level) where it then connects to the main Oslo to Trondheim line.

FactFile

Population 7,500 (approximate)
Language Norwegian
Currency Norwegian Kroner
Time Difference UK+1
Climate Temperate with frequent rain
Ship berths at Natokaien
Distance from Centre Approximately 300 yards
Distance from gangway to coach Less than 100 yards

Useful Information

Shopping There are a wide selection of shops in the town and also at a shopping centre 1½ miles from the pier
Shopping Opening Hours Most are open Monday to Friday from 1000-1700 and on Saturday 1000-1500
Post Office The Post Office situated in the Coop Extra Åndalsnes store located at STRANDGATA 1 6300 ÅNDALSNES. Opening hours are Monday to Friday 0700-2300 and Saturday 0800-2200.
Tourist Office There is not a Tourist Office located in the town.
How to Phone Home Dial 00 44 followed by the STD code (omitting the first 0) and then the number
Emergency Services Dial 113 for an ambulance, 112 for police and 110 for the fire service
Banks The Sparebanken Møre Bank is located in Jernbanegate about 100 yards from the pier. Opening hours are Monday to Friday from 0900-1530. It is closed weekends, but there is a 24-hour ATM

Excursions

Step aboard the scenic Rauma Railway for a train ride through some of the most spectacular mountain formations in Norway. After walking the short distance to the railway station in Åndalsnes, board the train and ride 35 miles along the line to Bjorli, while admiring the picture-postcard scenes from the large panoramic windows. Your ride will take you along the course of the Rauma River, ascending the Romsdal Valley and passing the Horn of Romsdal and the 'Troll Wall' mountain face. You will see many waterfalls, cross several bridges, and ride through two spiral tunnels that allow the train to ascend further up into the valley. Your train then crosses over the Kylling Bridge, from where there is a dramatic view of the river flowing into a canyon below. After alighting the train at Bjorli Station your mode of transport changes, and you take a coach drive through one of Norway’s most beautiful valleys, surrounded by impressive peaks rising straight up from the valley floor. Pause at the Slettafossen waterfall viewpoint and get a closer look at the Troll Wall, Europe’s tallest perpendicular rock face, before returning to your ship at Åndalsnes.

This excursion requires walking approximately 450 yards altogether, with a few steps getting on and off the train. Any further walking at photo-stops is at your discretion. You should wear warm clothing, a hat, scarf and gloves along with comfortable flat-soled walking shoes. For half the group the itinerary will operate in reverse, travelling first by coach and then boarding the train in Bjorli. The Rauma Railway in winter (© Leif J Olestad)

On this leisurely panoramic drive you will pass beautiful mountain scenery and foaming rapids as you follow the Rauma River up to Bjorli. Your first photo stop after leaving Åndalsnes will be at a viewpoint at the foot of Trollsveggen, the Troll Wall. Forming part of the Trolltinden peaks, the 3,600-foot high Trollveggen is Europe’s tallest vertical overhanging rock face. On the opposite side of the valley, the majestic Romsdalshorn peak towers to a height of over 5,000 feet. Continuing along the narrow valley beside the banks of the foaming salmon river, Rauma, you eventually reach Bjorli Ski Centre, which is situated at 1,800 feet above sea level. Enjoy refreshments here at the Bjorliheimen Hotel before returning to Andalsnes along a similar route. If weather conditions permit, a short stop will be made near Verma, to admire a particularly pretty stretch of the River Rauma as it flows rapidly through a deep gorge to form the Slettafossen Waterfall.

Walking to access the Troll Wall viewpoint and the refreshment venue will amount to less than 100 yards, with just the occasional step. Those wishing to view the Slettafossen Waterfall will need to walk a further 100 yards over uneven and possibly icy surfaces. The Troll Wall: Europe's highest perpendicular rock face

Join this leisurely panoramic drive to view the famous Troll Wall and visit one of Norway’s few remaining stave churches. Travelling north from Åndalsnes you follow the banks of the Romsdalsfjord through the village of Isfjorden, known for its many small clothing and woodworking factories, to Lerheim where your journey then continues alongside the Rødvenfjord to the ancient stave church, dating back to 1300. Since 1907, when a new church was built across the road, Rødven stave church has been owned by the Society for the Preservation of Norwegian Ancient Monuments and now only holds one service a year on the eve of St Olav’s Day. The church’s interior furnishings and decorations mainly date from the 1600 and 1700s, but the wooden crucifix is older and goes back to the 13th century. Returning by a similar route, you will continue beyond Åndalsnes and drive south along the scenic Romsdalen Valley to a viewpoint in front of the stunning Trollveggen. The Troll Wall forms part of Trolltinden (Troll Peaks), and at 3,600 feet is Europe’s tallest vertical rock face. Having witnessed this impressive feat of nature, return to the ship in Åndalsnes.

This excursion requires less than 100 yards walking with a couple of high threshold steps to access the church and pews inside. Walking at the Troll Wall viewpoint is at your discretion. You should wear warm clothing, a hat, scarf and gloves along with flat comfortable walking shoes. Flash photography is not permitted inside the stave church. The beautiful winter landscape of Romsdal

Cross the Arctic Circle.

Tromsø

Arrive 0800 on February 20. Depart 1800 on February 21.

With its centre located on the island of Tromsø, the municipality of Tromsø is more than five times the size of Norway’s capital, Oslo, and is the world’s northernmost university city. Lying 200 miles inside the Arctic Circle, it is known as the 'Gateway to the Arctic' because it was used as a starting point for hunters looking for Arctic foxes, polar bears and seals. In the 19th century it was a base for explorers on Arctic expeditions – a history that is remembered in the city’s Polar Museum, which you can visit on an excursion. Also commemorated in the area is the history of Norway’s indigenous people, the Sami. Visitors can learn about the traditions, heritage and modern preservation of the Sami culture at the Tromsø Museum. Nowadays, Tromsø is a charming mix of old and new, with wooden buildings sitting alongside contemporary architecture such as the impressive glacier-like Arctic Cathedral, which features one of the largest stained glass windows in Europe. Looking down on the city is Mount Storsteinen, and a cable car runs to the top, giving wonderful views over the surrounding countryside of forested peaks and reindeer pastures.

FactFile

Population 72,681 (approximate)
Language Norwegian
Currency Norwegian Kroner
Time Difference UK+1
Climate Cold with a risk of snow showers
Ship berths at Prostneset or Breivika Pier
Distance from Centre 200 yards or three miles, depending on pier
Distance from gangway to coach Less than 100 yards

Useful Information

Shopping The Nærstranda Steen og Strøm Shopping Centre has a good selection of shops.
Shopping Opening Hours Usually 1000-2000 Monday to Friday and 1000-1800 on Saturdays.
Post Office The Post Office is located at Strandgata 41 and is open Monday to Friday from 0800-1800, and 1000-1800 on Saturdays.
Tourist Office The Tourist Office is located at Kirkegata 2. Opening hours are Monday to Friday from 0900-1600, and 1000-1600 on Saturday.
How to Phone Home For the UK dial 00 44 followed by the full STD number, omitting the first zero.
Emergency Services Dial 113 for an ambulance, 112 for police and 110 for the fire service.
Banks Banks are open Monday to Friday 0900-1530. 24-hour ATMs are located at Storgata 65 and Sjøgata 8.

Excursions

Head to the Tromsø Wilderness Centre, located approximately 12 miles from the city amid beautiful Arctic scenery. Upon arrival you can meet some of the 240 huskies, who are trained to pull sledges through the harshest polar conditions. You will then put on a thermal suit and boots, and walk through the yard to begin your dog sledding experience. This will be a thrilling 20-25 minute ride through the wilderness overlooking the fjords. Each sledge can accommodate up to three people, and will be driven by a guide, pulled by a team of a dozen or so dogs. Afterwards, enjoy a warming cup of coffee from the open fire, served with a cake in a traditional 'lavvu' tent. Finally, take a guided tour around the kennels, before returning to the pier in Tromsø.

There is a 200-yard uphill walk over snow-covered gravel paths to reach the huskies at the Wilderness Centre. As the sledge rides can get bumpy they are not suitable for those who suffer from back and neck problems. All necessary equipment and a thermal suit will be provided – however, it is essential that you wear warm clothing, including a hat, scarf and gloves. We also recommend that you wear clothing which you don't mind getting dirty as the husky dogs often jump up enthusiastically to greet visitors. The journey to the centre should take around 30 minutes each way. This tour will only operate in favourable conditions. Enjoy a dog sledge ride

Your tour begins with a short drive to the Tromsø Museum, where you can enjoy a guided tour and learn about the challenges facing the native Sami people as they struggle to preserve their way of life. Continue with a drive past Lake Prestvatn and the Meteorological Institute, as well as the world-renowned Northern Lights Observatory. Pass by the place where Hitler's Tirpitz (sister ship of the Bismarck) was finally sunk by British Lancasters in November 1944, and discover the modern architecture of the breathtaking Arctic Cathedral, a mighty structure dominated by a beautiful stained glass window depicting the Resurrection of Christ. Then take a thrilling cable car ride up Mount Storsteinen for a stunning bird’s eye view of the city and its surroundings before returning to your ship.

The guided tour of the museum involves climbing one flight of stairs. Walking at the cable car amounts to 100 yards and involves 60 steps. You will need to remain standing during the cable car ride. There is a further walk of 100 yards up a fairly steep incline and a few steps to enter the cathedral. Your tour includes the iconic Arctic Cathedral

Departing the pier you will drive to the other side of Troms Island and then across the 1335-yard long Sandnessund Bridge to Whale Island, where the Tromsø Friluftsenter is situated, a journey of approximately half an hour. Upon arrival you will be greeted by your Sami hosts who will explain a little about the centre and activities offered. You will then be taken to where a small herd of specially trained reindeer are waiting to take you on an old fashioned sled ride. During the next half hour you will travel quietly through the pristine Norwegian winter landscape, hearing nothing but the jingle of the reindeers' bells as they meander sedately along. After your sledding experience you will be served coffee and Bidos, a traditional sami meal consisting of vegetables and reindeer meat, in a lavvo tent. Your guide will then tell stories about the Sami people, their history and way of life, and demonstrate the art of lasso throwing, which you will also have the opportunity of trying for yourself. You will then return to the city having experienced a glimpse of Sami life.

This excursion will involve walking a total of 300 yards much of which will be over uneven ground covered in snow. Warm clothing is essential so we recommend you wear warm trousers, jacket, hat, scarf and gloves. Please also wear warm, waterproof boots. Enjoy Reindeer-Sledding through the snow

Your tour begins with a drive around the city of Tromsø before you proceed past Lake Prestvatn and to the Meteorological Institute and former Northern Lights Observatory. Pass by the place where Hitler's Tirpitz (sister ship of the Bismark) was finally sunk by British Lancasters in November 1944 before arriving at the Science Centre Planetarium which is based at the world's northernmost university campus and boasts a 360° multimedia screen. Here you have the opportunity to watch a fascinating film about the Aurora Borealis and to learn more about this mystical phenomenon. As you continue your tour and drive across Tromsø Bridge you will begin to appreciate the modern architecture of the breathtaking Arctic Cathedral, a mighty structure in the shape of an iceberg which is clad in aluminium. This distinctive and memorable building was consecrated in 1965 and is dominated by a beautiful stained glass window depicting the Resurrection of Christ. which was designed by Viktor Sparre and is one of the largest stained glass windows in Europe.

Walking at the Planetarium amounts to not more than 100 yards with 20 steps to negotiate inside, although a lift is available. There is a further walk of 100 yards up a fairly steep incline and a few steps to enter the cathedral. You should wear warm clothing, a hat, scarf and gloves along with flat comfortable walking shoes. The Planetarium

Beer has been produced in Norway for centuries. During the Viking period, it was an everyday drink, whereas mead was reserved for special occasions. Beer has gone from strength to strength ever since, and on this trip to the world’s most northerly brewery you will learn about the history and present-day operations of Mack Beer, which has been in production for 140 years. Your tour starts with an introduction to the raw materials that go into beer, and continues with an overview of the brewing process, an introduction to Mack’s range of beers and a visit to the microbrewery. Your enthusiastic brewery guide will tell you all about this traditional beverage, and will explain the different kinds of beer, so that you will be able to distinguish a brown ale from a bokøl, and understand why wheat bear often has a fruity taste. After your beer tasting, your guide will be happy to answer any questions that you may have. You also have time to purchase beer and other souvenirs in the gift shop, and can even print your own personal labels for your favourite beer!

The brewery visit involves walking approximately 500 yards, and you will need to negotiate a short spiral staircase with ten steps. Regrettably, the brewery is an old building and is not wheelchair accessible. You will need to remain standing for quite long periods during the tour. Mack’s Brewery in Tromsø

Enjoy an evening concert inside Tromsø's distinctive Tromsdalen Church, also known as the 'Arctic Cathedral', which was built in 1965 and whose architecture was inspired by ice and snow. Clad in aluminium and with a stunning modern interior, the building is an iconic symbol of Tromsø. Your tour starts with a coach journey to the cathedral, which should take around 20 minutes. Once inside, take your seats for an enjoyable concert of Norwegian classical and folk music. The exceptional acoustics within the cathedral make this an inviting venue. During your visit, you may like to purchase postcards, stamps, and other souvenirs that are on sale here, before returning to the port.

Walking at the cathedral will amount to approximately 150 yards up a fairly steep slope with a couple of steps. Comfortable, layered clothing and warm, waterproof shoes are recommended. The concert itself lasts for about 45 minutes. Although the cathedral itself is wheelchair accessible, the wc facilities are not, as they are located down a flight of stairs. Enjoy a concert in Tromsø's Arctic Cathedral

Alta

Arrive 0800 on February 22. Depart 1300 on February 23.

People have been attracted to the community of Alta for thousands of years, and prehistoric rock carvings discovered in 1973 can be seen at the Alta Museum. Situated at the head of the Altafjord, it is a lush, green and hospitable shelter in the otherwise cold and windswept Finnmark landscape. Halfway between the grim, barren mountain plateau and the wet, stormy coast, Alta offers tree-clad valleys, pleasant temperatures and no more rain than the Sahara. However at 70 degrees North it is quite a different story in winter, when heavy snowfalls and sub-zero temperatures are the order of the day, and clear dark night skies become the arena for dazzling displays of the elusive Aurora Borealis, also referred to as 'the temperamental lady' by Laplanders. The world’s first Northern Lights Observatory, which played an important role in the development of geophysical and meteorological research during the first half of the 20th century, is located just 12 miles from Alta. Perched atop Haldde Mountain, it towers almost 3,000 feet above Kafjord, where the battleship Tirpitz was based during the Second World War.

FactFile

Population 12,000 (approximate)
Language Norwegian
Currency Norwegian Kroner
Time Difference UK+1
Climate Cold with snow showers
Ship berths at Alta Pier
Distance from Centre 5 miles
Distance from gangway to coach Less than 100 yards

Useful Information

Shopping A variety of shops are to be found within the pedestrian precinct of Alta town centre.
Shopping Opening Hours Most shops are open between 0900-1800 on weekdays.
Post Office The Post Office is located in the town centre where the shuttle bus stops and is open on weekdays between 0900-1800.
Tourist Office The Tourist information centre is located in the town centre where the shuttle bus stops.
How to Phone Home For the UK dial 00 44 followed by the full STD number, but omitting the first zero.
Emergency Services Dial 113 for an ambulance, 112 for police and 110 for the fire service.
Banks Nordea Bank is located in the town centre and is open 0900-1600 on weekdays.

Excursions

Discover the enchanting Sorrisniva Igloo Hotel on this excursion, a truly remarkable structure which is made entirely of ice and snow. Board your coach and travel to the hotel, which is about 13 miles from Alta and should take approximately 30 minutes to reach. Along the way your guide will give a talk on the history, culture and day-to-day life in this area. The Igloo Hotel is constructed anew every year, and is only able to stay open from January to April, before it begins to melt in the warmer weather. This fascinating structure can accommodate 60 guests who sleep on reindeer furs to keep warm in the icy temperatures, which usually average between minus 4 and minus 7 degrees Celsius. The public lounges and bar are decorated with ice sculptures carved by local artists, and you will be able to enjoy a drink in the bar served, of course, in an ice-glass. Take a fascinating look around the hotel before heading back to Alta through picturesque winter landscapes.

This tour is by coach and involves limited walking in and around the Igloo Hotel, but it will be over ice and snow. You should wear warm clothing, a hat, scarf and gloves along with flat comfortable walking shoes Enjoy a drink served in an ice-glass

A short transfer will take you from the pier to the Holmen Husky Centre for a unique husky dog experience and a magical overnight stay. On arrival, your hosts will welcome you and provide you with a thermal suits, boots and gloves. After a safety briefing, your exciting dog sledging ride will begin, with a trained driver-guide taking the helm. You travel ten miles through the beautiful forest and alongside a river, admiring the winter landscape as you go. Once back, you’ll be shown where you will be staying for the night and will then have some time to relax before dinner. Accommodation is in an intriguing tepee cabin with a double bed, electric blankets, and a wood-burning stove. There’s also a clear plastic part of the tepee which gives you panoramic views of the night sky – you can gaze at the stars whilst you listen to the huskies in the nearby yard. In the morning, a delicious breakfast will be served before you make your way back to Saga Pearl II.

This excursion requires you to walk up to 330 yards, the majority of which will be on snowy ground. You should wear warm clothing, a hat, scarf and gloves. Due to the bumpy conditions, the sledge ride is not suitable for those who suffer with back and neck problems. The tepee-cabins do not have private toilets and showers; these, as well as a sauna and Jacuzzi, are available in the main building some 30 meters from the cabins. The Husky Centre will need to know of any dietary requirement one week beforehand. Dinner will be a main course and dessert with coffee or tea. If you’ve chosen not to take Saga's included insurance, we recommend that you check your travel insurance covers you for this specific activity. Please be aware that this tour requires two passengers per tepee to operate. Cancellations received after the cruise departure date will result in a 100% cancellation fee. Holmen Tepee Cabin

Join this included excursion for the best chance of seeing the amazing natural phenomena of the Aurora Borealis, world renowned as the 'Northern Lights'. After an early dinner on board the ship, attend an interesting lecture by your expert guide. As a group, you will plan and decide on the best location for viewing the Northern Lights that evening, based on the latest meteorological forecasts. Then board the coach and travel to your selected spot, far away from any light pollution. Enjoy a campfire outside as you hunt for a glimpse of this incredible natural phenomenon, a colourful display of light created by emissions of photons in the Earth's upper atmosphere. Take in the quiet and beautiful scenery of your secluded position as your guide tells you stories of the region and gives tips on how to take good photographs of the light phenomena. Warm drinks and snacks will also be served while here. One by one the coaches will then depart for the return journey back to the ship, with the last coach returning around 0100.

This excursion is dependent on good weather conditions and will be cancelled if they are unfavourable. Walking is not expected to exceed 400 yards. Warm clothing is essential as most of the time will be spent outside. Torches will be provided. The only toilet facilities may be those on board the coaches. Sightings of the Northern Lights cannot be guaranteed. Marvel at the Northern Lights

Your day starts with a short sightseeing coach tour of Alta alongside the River Altaelva, one of the best salmon rivers in Norway. It runs through one of the largest canyons in Europe, as it travels from the high plateau of Finnmarksvidda down to the Altafjord. Continuing on through Repvåg you enter the North Cape Tunnel to the island of Magerøya, home to the North Cape which is Europe’s most northerly point. Built in the 1990s, the tunnel sits 700 feet below sea level and at four-and-a-quarter miles long was the longest and deepest sea tunnel at that time. Arriving on the island, pass through Honningsvåg, the ‘capital’ of Magerøya, and cross the unique ‘lunar-like’ landscape to reach the North Cape. Named by Richard Chancellor, a 16th-century traveller, who sought the north-east passage, this sheer cliff rises 1,000 feet above the Arctic. Walk to the Globe Monument and enjoy the far-reaching panorama (weather conditions permitting) or visit the shops, chapel and the North Cape Hall - which houses various small exhibitions about Norwegian life - before starting the journey back towards Alta. A late lunch will be served on the island of Mageroy before returning via the same route.

Please note that eight hours of this tour will be spent on the coach and that the last part of the drive to and from the North Cape will be in convoy. Most walking at the North Cape is at your discretion, but you should anticipate covering approximately 200 yards on foot to reach the Globe and the panoramic views outside. You should wear warm clothing, a hat, scarf and gloves - along with flat comfortable walking shoes. There is a lift to the cinema for those not wishing to climb the stairs. Dietary requests must be advised to the Shore Excursion Manager on board ship at least 72 hours prior to arrival. The North Cape: Mainland Europe's most northerly point

Lapland covers the northern parts of Norway, Sweden, Finland and the Kola Peninsula in Russia. The indigenous inhabitants of Lapland are known as Sami and they total around 80,000, of whom about half live in Northern Norway’s Finnmark region. Their culture is very traditional and has been influenced by their isolated nomadic subsistence lifestyle. Start by travelling through the Alta and Eiby valleys before arriving in Maze, a journey of about an hour. Arriving in the village of Maze, where all but a handful of the 350 inhabitants are Sami, your hosts will welcome you wearing kofta, their traditional costume, and introduce you to the history and culture of the Sami people. In the late 1970s the Norwegian government first planned the Alta Dam, which would have resulted in a complete flooding of Maze. However, due to resistance and demonstrations, the government downsized its plans and this beautiful village survived. You will then be taken to where a small herd of specially trained reindeer are waiting to take you on an old-fashioned sled ride. During the next half hour you travel quietly through the pristine winter landscape, hearing nothing but the jingle of the bells. Afterwards you will be served coffee, tea and biscuits whilst your guide recounts stories about the Sami people, their history and way of life before you return to Alta.

This adventurous tour requires half-a-mile of walking and a certain degree of agility to access the wooden sleds. As the number of trained reindeer is limited, half the group take the sled ride after the meal. Warm clothing is essential: we recommend a hat, scarf and gloves. Owing to the bumpy conditions, sled rides are not suitable for those who suffer from back or neck problems. Enjoy a Reindeer Sled ride

Enjoy a short husky dog sledge ride and learn about the fascinating Sami culture on this excursion. Begin with a visit to the Holmen Hundesenter dog sledging centre, where you can enjoy a 20-minute ride seated in a wooden sledge pulled by a pack of huskies, under the control of an experienced 'musher'. After this thrilling experience, learn from the dog trainers about how these energetic canines are trained for the annual Finnmarkslopet, a true test of stamina in which the dogs compete in a 600-mile race, the longest in Europe. You can also enjoy hot refreshments and cake served in a 'lavvu' tent. Following this, rejoin your coach for the short journey to Boazo Sami Siida, a traditional Sami settlement of reindeer herders located close to the Alta River. During a tour of the 'siida' you can learn a little about reindeer herding, look at the equipment and utensils used by the herders, and meet the friendly reindeer themselves. Other activities include Sami chanting, known as 'joik' and lasso throwing. Coffee will also be made over an open fire in a 'lavvu' which you can try. Perhaps purchase some Sami handicrafts before setting off for the return journey to your ship in Alta.

This excursion requires walking up to half-a-mile at the dog sledging centre, plus a further 300 yards at Boazo Sami Siida, the majority of which will be over snow. You should wear warm clothing, a hat, scarf and gloves. Please note that the excursion provider requires all participants to sign a form acknowledging the inherent risks involved with this type of activity. You should wear warm clothing, a hat, scarf and gloves along with flat comfortable walking shoes. We recommend that those passengers who have chosen not to take Saga's included insurance, check that their travel insurance covers them for this specific activity. Due to the bumpy conditions, sled rides are not suitable for those who suffer with back and neck problems. Meet the huskies that will pull your wooden sledge

The Northern Lights Cathedral is one of Alta's newest and most striking landmarks. The church first opened in 2013 and has delighted visitors with its challenging symbolism and unique design ever since. During a short panoramic tour of Alta, your guide will talk about the architecture, the construction and the artwork, both inside and out. The cathedral is an extraordinary achievement, rising as a sculptural peak to contrast the natural environment around it. The building symbolises the Arctic northern lights through the spiral that rises to the top of the cathedral, and the titanium covered façade offers a reflection of the phenomenon during the dark winter nights. Inside, the cathedral is illuminated by the tall windows which spiral around the building. You will have plenty of time to take pictures and to embrace the peaceful atmosphere. The cathedral basement is now home to the fascinating Borealis interactive exhibition, admission to which is included. Here you can learn about this amazing natural phenomenon and hear some of the local legends associated with it.

This tour requires walking approximately 550 yards in total over relatively flat, somewhat uneven ground with a slight incline. Owing to ongoing construction works, there may be six steps that cannot be avoided: any other walking is at your discretion. You should wear warm clothing, a hat, scarf and gloves along with flat, comfortable walking shoes. The Northern Lights Cathedral

Tirpitz was a German battleship which spent much of World War II in Nazi-occupied Norway. Known as the 'Lonely Queen of the North', she was the sister ship of the Bismarck, and at 52,600 tonnes, was the largest battleship ever built in Europe. This major threat to Allied convoys travelling through the Atlantic and Barents seas to Russia, was damaged by British mini-submarines in the Kåfjord, close to Alta, in September 1943. The battleship was then relocated to Tromsø, where on November 12, 1944 it was attacked by RAF Bomber Command and sunk in the bay of Håkøybotn. Accompanied by a knowledgeable local guide, this excursion will take you to the Tirpitz Museum in Kåfjord, which exhibits a host of World War II artefacts, including many associated with the Tirpitz. At the museum you can also watch a short film before enjoying a tour around and a talk on the region's turbulent wartime history. Before returning to the port, stop to discover Kåfjord church, a 19th-century building which has some Gothic touches and an interesting past. Built in 1837 for the copper mine workers, it is the area's oldest building left standing after the devastation of World War II.

This excursion requires minimal walking, approximately 200 yards in total but includes a short uphill slope and a couple of steps to access the museum and church, which can be icy in winter months. You should wear warm clothing, a hat, scarf and gloves along with flat comfortable walking shoes Tirpitz Memorial

Narvik

Arrive 1200. Depart 1800.

At 68 degrees North, Narvik lies 140 miles inside the Arctic Circle. Its history as a settlement began in the Stone Age, and Vikings are also known to have lived in the area. The modern town came into existence in the 1870s to serve the needs of the iron industry. Iron ore is mined in neighbouring Sweden and, as an ice-free port, Narvik was chosen as the ideal export location. The LKAB mining corporation is still a major employer and landowner in the area, shipping some 25,000,000 tons of iron ore from the port annually. This industrial heritage has shaped the town and now forms the basis of some of its most popular tourist attractions. In 1883 a co-owned British-Swedish company was given permission to build a railway connecting the Swedish iron mines in Kiruna to Narvik. It opened in 1902 and the town, then christened Victoriahavn, grew up around it. Unfortunately much of Narvik was destroyed in World War II. Invaded by the Nazis on 9 April 1940, it was later retaken by the Allies, representing the first military defeat of Hitler’s troops, but was evacuated as part of Operation Alphabet when it came under German occupation again. The local war museum documents the turbulent history of this period.

FactFile

Population 18,500 (approximate)
Language Norwegian
Currency Norwegian Kroner
Time Difference UK+1
Climate Cool with a risk of wintry showers
Ship berths at Fagernes
Distance from Centre Under one mile
Distance from gangway to coach Less than 100 yards

Useful Information

Shopping Shops are located at the AMFI and Narvik Storsenter Shopping Centres situated in the town centre near the bus and railway stations.
Shopping Opening Hours Most shops are open weekdays between 1000-2000.
Post Office Post Office services are available in most supermarkets.
Tourist Office The Tourist Office is at the railway station. Opening hours are 1000-1500.
How to Phone Home For the UK dial 00 44 followed by the full STD number, omitting the first zero.
Emergency Services Dial 113 for an ambulance, 112 for the police and 110 for the fire service.
Banks Banks are open from 0900-1500. 24-hour ATMs are located in every bank as well as inside shopping centres.

Excursions

The city of Narvik is situated in the Ofotfjord and is surrounded by majestic mountains, making it the perfect base for both mountaineering and skiing. Narvik's ski resort, Narvikfjellet, offers some of the best extreme and alpine skiing in Norway. It has one of Scandinavia's largest drop heights and offers excellent conditions for off-piste skiing. On this excursion you will be collected from the quayside for a ten-minute drive to the Narvikfjellet skiing area, where your adventure begins. You will be kitted out with skis, boots and helmet before a professional ski instructor takes you up to the beginners’ slope where you have a two-hour ski lesson. Afterwards, make your way by cable-car to the restaurant for tea or coffee and cake while enjoying the views of Narvik and its fjord below. After your refreshment break, take the cable-car back down for your coach transfer back to the ship.

This trip is suitable for complete beginners who have never tried skiing before. However, participants must have good health and good mobility. You may be stopped from participating at the pier if the operator or guide feels that you are not suited for this kind of activity. Extra clothes and a change of clothes should be brought along in case you get wet or feel cold after skiing. The ground will be uneven and snowy, and there will be 10 steps and a walk of 150 yards to the cable-car. Please be aware that anyone who has chosen Saga's included insurance will be covered as the additional surcharge required has been added to the tour price. If you have chosen to take out your own travel insurance, please check with your travel insurance company that it covers you for this specific activity. Why not join skiing for beginners from Narvik?

Join your guide at the pier and take a guided tour through the town, stopping to visit the War Cemetery. Here are the graves of 34 Commonwealth servicemen from World War II, most of whom were crew members on HMS Hunter, which sank on April 10, 1940 during the Narvik campaign. Next stop at a viewpoint where you can look across the town and the Ofotfjord, the 48-mile long fjord which has a maximum depth of 1,814 feet. Your next stop is at the cable car station, where you board the gondola for the scenic seven-minute ascent up Fagernes Mountain to the restaurant that sits almost 2,160 feet above sea-level. On a clear day, fantastic views all the way to the Lofoten Islands can be enjoyed. In winter Fagernes Mountain is an international ski resort and a popular jump-off point for hang-gliders and paragliders, so do not be surprised if you see them gracefully dancing in the sky. Enjoy refreshments in the panoramic restaurant before the return gondola trip down the mountain. Then, after re-joining your coach, make your way back into the town centre where you stop at the brand-new exhibition centre. World War II is a big part of Narvik’s history and here you will be shown a film giving you some background into the war and how it affected the town. Time permitting, you may choose to remain in the town centre afterwards, or return to the pier on the coach.

This tour requires a walk of approximately 200 yards along flat paths at the war cemetery, with a couple of steps. Walking during your free time is at your discretion. You should wear warm clothing, a hat, scarf and gloves along with comfortable walking shoes. Views will depend on the weather. Narvik's War Cemetery includes 34 Commonwealth graves

Join your guide at the pier and take a short tour through the town, passing the Town Square and the busy port from where the Swedish mining company ships its iron ore. Stop at a viewpoint to look across the town, and over the Ofotfjord and Rombakfjord, before heading for the cable-car station, where you board one of six gondolas for the scenic eight-minute ascent up Fagernesfjellet Mountain. Home to a popular ski resort at the top, you leave the cable car at the upper station, from where, on a clear day, you may be able to see all the way to the Lofoten Islands. The mountain is also a popular jumping-off point for hang-gliders and paragliders. Enjoy refreshments in the panoramic restaurant, over 2,100 feet above sea level, before the return gondola ride down the mountain. From the lower station, your coach will take you back via Narvik town centre to the port. Anyone wishing to see more of Narvik may leave the coach in the centre and return to the ship later on the shuttle-bus.

This excursion involves very little walking: maybe about 200 yards altogether, with a few steps to board the cable car. However, there are a further 50 steps if you wish to walk down to the viewpoint at Fagernes Restaurant. Please note that views will depend on the weather, and that this tour may be cancelled at short notice if the conditions are windy or foggy. Enjoy far-reaching views from the cable-car

Take the opportunity to journey aboard the Ofotbanen Railway which travels through spectacular scenery on this trip to the Swedish border. The main purpose of the railway is to transport iron ore from Sweden to the ice-free port of Narvik, where it is then loaded onto ships and exported, a process that has now been happening for over a century. Your 26-mile train journey will take you from Narvik to Riksgränsen, which lies just half-a-mile inside the Swedish border. Along the way you can admire beautiful scenes looking out across the southern cliffs of Rombaksfjord. Hugging the steep rock face, the line passes through Katterat and on to Bjørnfjell which is the last station on the Norwegian side of the border, sitting 1,600 feet above sea level. Look out for the Norwegian and Swedish flags painted on the tunnel wall, which indicate the border between the two countries. After alighting the train in the Swedish ski-resort of Riksgränsen, receive a warm welcome at the local hotel and enjoy refreshments and some free time, before making the return journey to Narvik by coach.

This excursion requires walking approximately 200 yards in total, with three steep steps to board the train and a steep hill to negotiate between the station and the hotel. Any additional walking at Riksgränsen is at your own discretion. For some groups the itinerary will be reversed. Warm clothing and shoes are highly recommended. On some departures where timings necessitate, a packed lunch may be provided to augment the included refreshments. Take a memorable trip on the Ofotbanen Railway

Enjoy a city sightseeing tour from the comfort of your coach and learn about Narvik's fascinating war history from a local guide. Several important battles were fought in Narvik during World War II and many soldiers lost their lives here. Your tour will take you to the war cemetery where British, French, German, Norwegian and Polish soldiers are buried. Narvik was badly damaged during the first few months of the war and on April 9, 1940 it was invaded by the Nazis. Less than two months later, the Allies managed to recapture the city but as troops were required elsewhere, it fell to the Nazis again, who occupied it for a further five years. This fascinating story is told in chronological order at the compact War Museum, which you visit next. You will receive a brief introduction and watch a short film about the Battle of Narvik and then have the opportunity to wander around the array of exhibits, models, charts and maps independently, before rejoining the coach and returning to the pier.

This tour requires a walk of approximately 200 yards on flat paths at the war cemetery, with a couple of steps. At the War Museum there are eight steps at the entrance, with a further 17 steps up to the first floor. Inside Narvik's fascinating War Museum

Cross the Arctic Circle.

Spend the day at sea.

Kalvåg

Arrive 0800. Depart 1800.

Kalvåg is a village on the island of Frøya at the southern entrance to the Nordfjord. It is noted for the old timber buildings on its waterfront, most of which were originally warehouses, which have been restored and converted to provide accommodation for visitors. Kalvåg used to be a major fishing port, and during its heyday there were as many as 50 herring salting houses in the town, employing 10,000 workers. Today there is just one factory on the outskirts, and Kalvåg is starting to develop as a tourist destination. It is within easy reach of the seaside resort of Grotlesanden.

FactFile

Population 453
Language Norwegian
Currency Norwegian Krone
Time Difference UK+1
Climate Cold winters and cool summers, with a risk of rain at any time of the year.
Ship berths at Fiskeri Pier, Kalvåg Port
Distance from Centre 400 yards
Distance from gangway to coach 150 yards

Useful Information

Shopping There is a small selection of shops in the town centre.
Shopping Opening Hours Most shops are open 0900-1900 from Monday to Saturday.
Post Office The post office counter is located inside the Spar supermarket.
Tourist Office There is a small tourist office on the quayside.
How to Phone Home For the UK dial 0044 followed by the full STD number, omitting the first zero.
Emergency Services Dial 113 for an ambulance, 112 for police and 110 for the fire service.
Banks There is a branch of the Sparebanken Sogn og Fjordane in the village, near the pier.

Excursions

On this tour, you will get to know the locals and visit their home. A guide will meet you at the pier and escort you to the residential district of Kalvåg on board a shuttle-bus, telling you along the way about the village and the people living there. You will be welcomed into the home of Ann-Irene Gulestøl and Jorunn Frøyen. They will tell you about their home and about what it is like to live in Kalvåg with their families. Norwegian houses are distinguished by their wooden weather-boarding and slate roofs, and it is typical for them to be painted in bold colours such as red, blue, yellow or white. Traditionally, houses were built with small rooms that were easy to keep warm in the winter, and steep roofs designed to help the snow slide off. A wood-burning stove in the centre of the house keeps it warm during the cold winters. After showing you their home, Ann-Irene Gulestøl and Jorunn Frøyen will serve you tea or coffee and home-made waffles with jam and sour cream. After this fascinating look at local life, return to the pier on a shuttle-bus with your guide.

Tour participants will need to walk about 500 yards, with a flight of four steps to get into the house. We recommend comfortable shoes and casual clothing: please be prepared for changeable weather. We reserve the right to visit an alternative house owned by a different family from the one pictured and described in the booklet. A typical private home in Kalvåg

This guided tour will show you the fishing village of Kalvåg and introduce you to the coastal culture and the lives of the fishermen. Start with an orientation drive around the village, including a stop to visit the local parish church, which dates from 1865 and was designed by the distinguished Norwegian artist Anders Askevold: it replaced an older church that stood some distance outside the village. Inside the church is an attractive 18th-century altarpiece that came from the old church. From here, your coach takes you towards the village of Bremanger and the old graveyard at Grotle, which marks the site of the original Kalvåg church. The graveyard is located near Grotlesanden Beach, and after hearing about its history, a stop will be made at the beach, where you can go for a stroll and enjoy the views. The beach is nearly two miles long and it is covered in fine white sand. It is a pleasant place to visit at almost any time of the year. Re-joining your coach, head back towards Kalvåg, stopping along the way for photos of picturesque Nesje Lighthouse. Although small, this lighthouse is very important for ships sailing at sea. Listen to its history as you look out to sea: if a strong wind is blowing, you should be able to see the large swells heading towards the shore. After a short stop here, return to the port.

This tour involves unavoidable walking of about 300 yards, with occasional steps. However, during your free time at Grotlesanden, you may go for a much longer stroll along the beach if you wish. We recommend comfortable shoes and casual clothing: please be prepared for sudden showers. Views will depend on the weather. The coastal village of Kålvag

Leaving the port, head first towards Bremanger. Your journey takes you 200 feet beneath the sea as you travel through the road tunnel that connects the island of Frøya, on which Kålvag is situated, to the mainland. Pass the mighty Hornelen Cliff, said to be the highest in Europe: it towers 2,822 feet above the sea. Your guide will tell you about the area’s history and will also point out the various hydro-electric power stations along this stretch of coast, which not only provide power for local residents but also make an important contribution to Norway’s national grid. The landscape and climate change as you head inland to Ålfoten and the area where the summer farms are located. View the high mountains, reservoir, glacier and the narrow Ålfotefjorden, an arm of the Nordfjord. On arrival at Hjortegarden, the Red Deer Farm, Sonja the owner will welcome you and serve you cake made with her great-grandmother’s recipe, together with a cup of tea or coffee. Suitably refreshed, head outside to feed the Red deer. You can get really close to these beautiful creatures and have the chance to take some memorable photos. Leaving Hjortegarden, your coach will take you along a narrow, scenic road along the side of the Nordfjord, passing Isane, Davik and Rugsund. You will see the village churches and Old Trading Post at Rugsund before arriving back finally at Kalvåg.

You will need to walk approximately 400 yards. We have graded this tour as ‘Moderate’ as most walking will be over uneven grass, which may be muddy and slippery, with the possibility of puddles or patches of snow and ice in the winter months. The wc facilities are reached by a short uphill walk. We recommend comfortable, waterproof shoes or boots and warm outdoor clothing: please be prepared for sudden showers, and bear in mind that it may be several degrees colder in Ålfoten than on the coast. On the Red Deer Farm

Spend the day at sea.

Portsmouth

Arrive 0800. 

Disembark Saga Pearl II after breakfast.

Portsmouth is one of the most densely populated cities in Southern England, and is unusual as most of its built-up area occupies Portsea Island, linked to the mainland by road and rail bridges. Although there is a Roman fort at nearby Portchester, occupied later by the Saxons and Normans, there was no settlement on the site of Portsmouth at the time of the 1086 Domesday Book. The town developed in medieval times and received its first charter in 1194 from King Richard I; soon afterwards it became a major naval base. It has the world’s oldest dry dock, and is home to several famous ships, including HMS Victory, HMS Warrior and the Mary Rose, raised from the Solent in 1982. Portsmouth remains an important naval base and is home to a large proportion of the British service fleet. The waterfront area is now dominated by the Spinnaker Tower, 560 feet high, the United Kingdom’s tallest building outside London. Other things to see in the city include the house where Charles Dickens was born, and the City Museum, which contains a permanent exhibition devoted to another famous writer, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, who lived in the town.

FactFile

Population 205,400 (approximate)
Language English
Currency Pound sterling
Time Difference N/A
Climate An oceanic climate, with cool winters and mild to warm summers.
Ship berths at Portsmouth International Port
Distance from Centre ½-mile
Distance from gangway to coach Coaches collect passengers immediately outside the ship. However, on returning from an excursion, passengers must walk through security at the terminal building.

Useful Information

Shopping The nearest shops to the terminal are in Gunwharf Quays, near the Spinnaker Tower.
Shopping Opening Hours Most shops are open Monday to Friday 0900-2000, Saturday 0900-1900 and Sunday 1100-1700.
Post Office The main Post Office is in Slindon Street, near Portsmouth & Southsea railway station.
Tourist Office The Tourist Information Office is on Clarence Esplanade. Telephone: 023 9282 6722.
How to Phone Home For the UK dial the full STD code followed by the subscriber's number.
Emergency Services Dial 999.
Banks All main UK banks have branches in the city centre, and there are ATMs in the Cruise Terminal.

Please note

We cannot guarantee the appearance of the Northern Lights, which is a natural phenomenon, but this cruise will take you to the best spot at the best time of year for sighting them. You'll be provided with an Arctic jacket so that you can fully enjoy all the activities and excursions on offer. Unless stated as included, all excursions mentioned are optional, at an additional cost, and are subject to availability and change. Some of the highlights detailed may only be seen on optional excursions or by exploring independently.


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