The Viking Route Cruise – May 11 to May 27th, 2014
Come join us for a memorable cruise from Bergen, Norway to Reykjavik, Iceland. This itinerary is only offered once in 2014, and provides the opportunity to visit many ports rarely included on cruise schedules. Although the cruise is not just for knitters, this will be a chance to visit countries with strong knitting traditions: Norway; Scotland; the Faeroes and Iceland, plus lots of time for relaxed knitting aboard our ship.
The tour offers many added value features: meals and lectures by onboard specialists; a total of four nights in four-star, centrally-located hotels in Bergen and Reykjavik; a half-day city tour of Reykjavik and a full day tour in Iceland. May is a particularly good month to travel in this area as the days will be getting longer, allowing more time to appreciate the stunning scenery.
Skip to Price & Registration Details.
Our ship is the MS Fram, of the Hurtigruten fleet, which first started service in 1893 and 2013 marks 120 years of sailing experience. The Fram is a new vessel, launched in 2007. It is relatively small with a maximum of just 318 passengers. A variety of cabin categories have been reserved for our group. The Fram, which means ‘forward’ in Norwegian, is named after the wooden sailing ship, originally built in 1892 for a North Pole expedition, which also served Roald Amundsen during his trek to the South Pole in 1911.
On Board Programs
Throughout the cruise, there will be briefings and presentations by specialists so that you gain the maximum benefit from the regions we visit. The ship is very compact and comfortable, with a relaxed atmosphere. There are two observation lounges to view the passing sights as well as a gym, saunas, outdoor whirlpools and an internet cafe. The larger observation lounge, with windows on three sides is called the ‘Qilak’, an Inuit word meaning “sky”. The currency on board is the Norwegian kroner and major credit cards are also accepted. When the ship cannot drop anchor directly at a dock, transfers will be in ‘Polarcirkels’, large Zodiac-like tenders. Should you wish to take an excursion at some of our stops, these can be arranged through the tour desk aboard the ship.
Voyage Begins in Bergen, Norway
Our tour begins on May 11th, with two nights in picturesque Bergen and an opportunity to experience this small city, with many natural and historic sites. Bergen was founded in 1070 and boasts the UNESCO World Heritage site of ‘Bryggen’, where the famous houses on the wharf are located. The city is surrounded by seven mountains and you may wish to take either a funicular or a cable car to reach the top of two of the mountains. As you can imagine, the panoramic views are stunning. Among other sites are The Bergen Aquarium, the Bergen Art Museum and the Museum of Norwegian Knitting Industry, located 20 kms. away and reachable by local bus.
This evening, dinner is included at the hotel.
We join our ship on the afternoon of May 13th. Before evening dinner, we’ll get together for a reception to chat with your fellow travellers and hear more about this exciting tour. The next day is relaxed while we cross the North Sea. Over the next seven days, we’ll visit a number of ports on mainland Scotland:
Ports of Call
- Leith, just 5 kms. from Edinburgh;
- Kirkwall on Orkney;
- Portree on Skye (the Inner Hebrides);
- Staffa and Iona on Mull;
- Oban on the west coast of the mainland, known as “the gateway to the Highlands”;
- Stornoway on Lewis (the Outer Hebrides);
- Lerwick on Shetland.
Leaving Scotland, we head out in the Atlantic towards the Faroe Islands and the capital, Tόrshavn, one of the smallest capitals in the world. Tόrshavn was founded in the 10th century and has an interesting and attractive blend of old and new architecture and even some buildings with turf roofs. TheFaroes comprise a group of 18 islands and are administered by Denmark. Their knitting traditions are strong, with unique patterns such as the Faeroese Shawl, and there will be opportunities to visit shops with yarn from native sheep breeds. Optional excursions will be available from the tour desk on the ship, as the ship will be in dock for six hours,
After another relaxing day at sea, we reach the Westman Islands, known locally as the Vestmannaeyjar Islands and located off the coast of southern Iceland. The islands feature
stunning rock pillars, formed by submarine volcanic eruptions, providing sea cliff habitats for many bird species, including puffins. The largest of the island chain is Heimaey and at one time was one of Iceland’s most important fishing ports.
Our final destination is Iceland formerly known as the “kingdom of the Vikings”— the end of our cruise, but not the end of our tour. After breakfast on the ship, we’ll disembark at the dock in Reykjavik. As it will be too early for us to check into our hotel, a coach and local guide will meet us at the wharf for a tour of Reykjavik, giving you insight into this interesting city. We’ll visit the most significant places in the city and the surrounding towns. At the end of our coach tour, we’ll go to our hotel for check in and the rest of the day is free.
The next day, May 26th, is our last full day on Iceland. We’ll travel on the Golden Circle Tour with lunch included. Some of the many tour highlights: Thingvellir, an UNESCO site; geysers, waterfalls, lava fields where two of the earth’s tectonic plates split, and an opportunity to walk over a symbolic footbridge showing the rift between the European and North American tectonic plates; and the Istex factory where lopi yarns are processed.
In the evening, we’ll have a special farewell dinner at a local restaurant and an opportunity to relive our experiences on this unique tour.
- Our tour ends after breakfast at the hotel on May 27th.
Contact Joyce James for More Information:
Joyce James Tours
| GO TOP |