Thursday, May 29, 2008


Crown Princess Deck Log
Gdynia to Oslo - 675.8 Nautical Miles
Average Speed - 21.0 Knots
Noon Position: Alongside in Oslo
Sky: Cloudy
Temperature: 66 F

We have learned that the success of a tour rests solely on the shoulders of the tour guide. Today in Norway, we have an excellent tour guide. She was born in Japan, educated in the US and the UK, met her Norwegian husband in England, and had lived in Norway for over 25 years. Her English was excellent, her knowledge was extensive, and her pride in Norway was unmistakable! The driver's name was Paul, but her name was Japanese and started with an H and that's all I remember! She was great.

Our tour started very, very early - so when we arrived at Holmenkollen, the world famous ski jump training area, everything was closed. We got a good feel of the place, though, and got some good pictures.

In the same neighborhood as the ski jump, there were condos with turf roofs! It looked like a very nice neighborhood.
The guide kept talking about the blueberries, lingonberries, and mushrooms that you can find in the "ood" - well, that meant forest, or woods.

The highlight was the Viking museum where they have three actual Viking ships on display - it's an amazing experience. Besides the ships, there was a Viking wagon, and a Viking sled - fascinating!

At the Oslo Town Hall there is a beautiful clock with the signs of the zodiac on it, and a doorway with elaborate carvings of Norwegian sagas.

We had a good view of the Town Hall building from our balcony:
The Akershus Castle was directly across from our balcony. It's inside a huge fortress. We saw many groups visiting there, and people picnicking on the grounds. At one point, a mounted policewoman went slowly riding past.

I loved this charming street cafe in Oslo:
Our last dinner on the ship was an adventure. Both "anytime dining" dining rooms were full, so they escorted us to the Botticelli dining room - up a deck, the length of the ship, and down a deck (pant, pant). The Botticelli was decorated with balloons to celebrate the last night on the ship. They did a lights out presentation of the dessert - flaming baked Alaska!
Packing up was quite a project - but with a little help from our friends, we finally goit all of the shoes inside the luggage, and set the bags outside our stateroom door to be loaded for transfer to the airport in the morning. The cruise is over (heavy sigh).
At 1400 Crown Princess was ready to sail with all lines onboard. The Captain with the aid of the pilot started to navigate the inside of the Oslofjorden. Crown Princess set her south-easterly course towards our final destination, Copenhagen.