Saturday, 4 March 2017

Travel Diary: Day 5, Andalsnes

Today we docked in Andalsnes, which is a phenomenally beautiful place and definitely my favourite stop on this cruise. As I'd slept late and woken up early the previous three days I'd decided to skip going up to the top deck and eating breakfast in order to be slightly less sleep deprived when we did our tour. I wolfed down a delicious muffin that had been brought for me from the breakfast buffet as I got ready, then we headed down to wait for a tender to take us a shore. For those of you who don't know, a tender is a little boat-like vessel that, in my opinion, somewhat resembles a lifeboat that are used when a ship is unable to dock in the port (you'd usually just walk off the ship when it's in port). They're a bit more of an inconvenience because taking one means waiting for one to arrive, fill up with passengers and transport them either to the port or back to the ship, and who wants to waste time waiting?! I also used to find them quite small, wet and unpleasant as I found they rocked quite a bit, though I'm used to them now and so don't dislike them quite as much. In fact, in this instance I quite enjoyed  taking the tender, actually, as it provided me with the perfect opportunity to drink in the view, which was great as the view was stunning.

After exiting the tender we boarded our coach almost immediately, ready to start the tour. The tour consisted of two stops, one at a church and the other at the Troll Wall. A large part of the tour, however, consisted of driving around, which I thoroughly enjoyed as the whole place was incredibly scenic and all the roads we drove down were surrounded by this great natural beauty. The coach journey was truly amazing (even if I did have an incredibly quick power nap in the coach to boost my energy and reduce my tiredness). I have to say, I was awestruck by the views, which I think I was incredibly fortunate to see. Smooth, tranquil lakes sparkled calmly, while tall mountains stood proudly and peacefully as waterfalls and glaciers graced their sides. Bright fluffy white clouds hung low, adding both an air of mystique and serenity. Even the miserable, overcast day couldn't silence their beauty.

The church was our first stop. We were given a talk about the history of the church whilst sitting on the pews inside. We were then given the opportunity to take pictures of the church and use the loos if we needed, before we boarded the coach in order to carry on with the journey. The church's surrounding area was so astonishingly beautiful, with the most breathtaking view- I wish I hadn't wasted time queuing to use the toilet as it resulted in me having less time to marvel at its beauty. We then carried on to the Troll Wall, a tall rock wall that stands gracefully and majestically. We were given about twenty minutes to get off the coach and admire the wall, take pictures and have a look round the area. Once our twenty minutes were up we returned to the coach, which took us back to the tender area so we could go back to the ship. On our way back, we had a photo stop at a beautiful location, which provided us with an excellent opportunity to get some amazing shots of the scenery. This was great as I hadn't had much of a chance to capture the serene lakes with the impressive mountains towering above, with the emerald trees lining them. It was a pretty quick tour in comparison to others that I've been on, but I was completely satisfied and thought that it was amazing value- it really allowed me to get a real sense of the place without dragging on or being overly tiring.

Since our tour started quite early and only lasted for a short period of time we were back on the ship pretty early. We enjoyed a drink in our stateroom until it was time to go up to the lunch buffet. When we'd finished lunch we watched the remainder of 'The Theory of Everything,' (which I actually read through since I'm not that big a movie fan and I was finding my book pretty interesting). Once the movie had ended we went up to the top deck to admire the beautiful landscape while we still could, as the ship was due to sail away fairly soon. Shortly before the sail away we had some drinks in the atrium (I had the strawberry and lime cider again, yum), then we watched the ship leave the port and waved goodbye to the breathtaking scenery. We decided to have a more relaxed dinner tonight as there wasn't anything particularly exciting in the restaurant and they were serving Indian food in the buffet. It was actually pretty great eating at the buffet as the food was delicious and, as many people also came to the buffet this evening, there was a bit of a buzz in the atmosphere. It felt cosier and more relaxed than the restaurant, and we got to see the remainder if the gorgeous scenery as we sailed away, which made for a fantastic dining experience. There was another show being performed in the theatre, this time with a fairytale theme. It was a great show, though I felt that it lacked the 'wow factor' of the previous one and, as a result, was less spectacular.

No comments:

Post a Comment