Cruising is a new experience for us. Last Christmas holidays we thought about it, but ended up going to Oslo and Copenhagen by Flixbus. Now this summer we managed a short cruise trip in Baltic. We booked the ticket around a week before the trip, but for better deals try to book it at least a month ago. I recommend you book directly from the website of the cruise company you opt for. There are several options from stockholm like Tallink, Viking line, Sljaline etc. We went for the Viking line. I planned it like > Stockholm to Tallinn , next day Tallinn to Helsinki and after 2 days Helsinki to Stockholm. It departs at 4 pm from a place near Slussen and I thought 2.45 pm from our place should be fine to start by public transport. I was wrong and ended up hiring a cab from stockholm city to the port, as you need to reach at least 30 min before departure for check in and security.
Most of the Economy Cabin are at level 2, or anchor level which is the lowest level. It is even below the cars level. Yeah, I forgot to mention, in your ticket price you can take your vehicles to another country 😛 isn’t it cool? Anyway, my initial disappointment of having a cabin in lowest level without a window soon vanished as we climbed to the deck. Summer is a perfect time for this cruising, because of prolonged day light. Also this journey is perfect to experience Stockholm’s beautiful archipelago. Decks are big and has adequate sitting arrangement. You can enjoy it equally with all level passengers.
Stockholm archipelago is a real visual treat. Every summer, it is told almost half of Stockholm’s population disappears into the archipelago to escape from the bustle of city life. But experiencing it while cruising for another country is not a bad option at all. Summer months has adequate day light to enjoy the beauty till late evening. The Stockholm archipelago or Stockholms skärgård is the second-largest archipelago in the Baltic Sea.
The first stop from Stockholm is Mariehamn, capital of Åland situated on a narrow peninsula in between two sea bays and the harbours Västerhamn and Österhamn. You can reach here by one of the great passenger ferries from Stockholm, Kapellskär, Helsinki, Turku or Tallinn or by your own boat. It is a favourite tourist destinations with restaurants, hotels, bars, museums and shops. However we did not break our journey here to stay for a day which I am thinking to consider in our next East Europe trip.
Seeing sun set from the deck is a good experience too.The rainbow of colours and the other objects in that canvas look amazing.
We went for dinner at around 8.30 pm. Mariella, our cruise on Day1, has many restaurants and surprisingly price is pretty reasonable. Keep in mind, carrying food and drinks from your own is not allowed to the ship. They did not say anything for our small water bottles. We had a tapas dinner is a place called “The plate “. They have 6 dish assortments and you can choose whatever you like and can share. Water is little expensive on board, the restaurant charged us for a second pitcher without informing us. Well, after all it is sea, so drinking water is luxury here 🙂
The ship has many attractions for the guests including Live DJ, movie show, casinos and duty free shopping. Tourists are buying alcohol in bulk. But there is still a restriction of amount per head and you cannot drink it in your room. At night I went to sleep quickly, but my hubby went clicking photos and attended their DJ night called ” celebration”.
In the morning we reached Helsinki and there is a stop for an hour before starting to Tallinn. We could see the Helsinki sky view ( the ferris wheel ), Helsinki cathedral and famous Uspenski Cathedral from the deck itself. There is a breakfast option called viking buffet breakfast for 12 EUR and you can enjoy several swedish delicacies like herring, swedish pancake, cheese , smoked salmon etc.
From Helsinki, it takes 2 hours to reach Tallinn. You will come through a good amount of sea traffic like other passenger cruises as well as the industrial ones. The sea has a rich plankton lives viewed from the deck. We did not see any animal life which mostly live deep inside. There is a particular deck called sundeck, where you can enjoy live music and drinks as well as a great view in the sun.
We had good experience with this cruise and we will definitely consider it again in future. I have flew so many times over number of countries, and it becomes pretty boring at point. Also, you cannot stretch your legs due to space constraints and have handful movies to pass your time, don’t have fresh air and your co-travellers are almost breathing on you ( and you on them 😛 )… on the other hand, here in cruise you have your own cabin, you can enjoy fresh air, read books in a sunny deck, enjoy restaurants, play in a casino, even watch Avengers in a movie theatre! Definitely works for me, if I am not in hurry to go somewhere 😉 … Stay tuned !!
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