Norway is an amalgam of water and rock, in some places an extreme mixture. Travelling around by car/motor home is both expensive and very time consuming. Norway is also spectacular and varied, with both history and geography that fascinate and delight, and visiting by cruise ship allows you to take your hotel with you on your journey. Celebrity Eclipse is perhaps not the obvious choice for a visit to Norway as it is one of the bigger cruise ships afloat, being some 132,000 tons and having 16 decks but it is extremely manoeuvrable and the fjords are very deep.
Beginning and ending in Southampton is a great bonus as there are no long-haul flights and the limits to the weight of the luggage are far more generous than the airlines (unless you travel First Class). The ship is large, and although there are some 3000 passengers and 1500 crew it didn’t feel crowded: it was always possible to find a quiet corner. We had a Concierge Class Stateroom with balcony and prt of the package was ‘Select [email protected] that enabled us to be flexible with our evening meal time and gave us a choice of sitting with different people each time or having a table to ourselves.
There were lots of activities programmed each day, and we tried the Dancing lessons, which on a choppy day at sea became ‘Slow… Slow… Quick… Quick… Lurch’ but still most enjoyable. There were a number of demonstrations and talks about the workings of the ship, and also about the various places the ship was calling at.
The food was wonderful. The two main dining venues were a buffet restaurant and an a-la-carte venue, each with some dishes available every day and others as daily specials. In addition there were several speciality restaurants available at a supplementary cost. Altogether there were great choices and all food cooked very well indeed.
Our Stateroom was well equipped and certainly a good size for the two of us. The bed was comfortable and the service from our steward Rose and her team was excellent.
Finally, although we had a choppy crossing of the North Sea on Day 2, the rest of the voyage was very calm.
We visited Bergen, Flamm, Gerainger, Alesund and Stavanger, and we enjoyed them all particularly as the weather was lovely.
Altogether a great holiday, and a wonderful way to experience Norway.