Sunday, 13 April 2014
BERGENSFJORD 2014 Part 2
Part 2 – STAVANGERFJORD of Fjord Line
Sunday 23rd March 2014
Waking in Bergen this morning I could actually see the top of the mountain just at the back of the hotel, so I hoped that was a good omen despite the weather forecast.
After breakfast I walked again to the Fjord Line/Hurtigruten terminal as I knew that Fjord Line’s 2013 new-build STAVANGERFJORD was due in just before 2 p.m. and I really wanted to see the ship arrive. Ship details include: gross tonnage 31,678, maximum passengers 1500, cabin berths 1188, car capacity 600, and service speed 21.5 knots. Last year I had been lucky enough to get a copy of the new brochure about the ship, and then a friend had sailed on her last year and enjoyed the new cruise ferry which Fjord Line described as a lifestyle liner. His fascinating write-up about the trip can be found in the Winter 2014 issue of the Ocean Liner Society magazine ‘Sea Lines’.
I had booked with the Fjord Line Bergen office to sail on her myself on 24th March 2014, doing a mini-cruise from Bergen down to Hirtshals in northern Denmark, via Stavanger. My ticket was e-mailed to me recently, and then the following week another ticket arrived – and this time I was to sail on the very new BERGENSFJORD! I was very thrilled with this, as she had just come into service with Fjord Line, and I wrote back to Fjord line to say so.
Suddenly today I was in for a double treat, as here was one new ship arriving and I could photograph her from a nearby quayside, whilst knowing I would sail on the other one on Monday 24th.
I arrived at the Fjord Line terminal hoping to get a closer picture of the ship but that was not possible. However, the check in staff at the desk included the man from the Bergen office who had made my bookings so it was fun to introduce ourselves and have a quick chat. He then asked if I would like to visit STAVANGERFJORD with him and a new member of staff, for a very short tour, so of course I said yes. He obtained permission for me to go on board, and we were soon on the overhead walkway to board the ship. There was what felt like a ‘meet and greet’ group waiting for us – all gold braid and smiles – and we were then given a very fast walk round some of the main rooms, and outside in the rain to see the Hundehotell with its solitary doggy occupant.
I managed to get a few photographs as we hurried around, and then it was time to go ashore, and thank Kai for his kindness in arranging for me to visit the ship.
The ship was due to leave almost immediately so, as the day’s Hurtigruten ship arrived and berthed on the adjacent quay, STAVANGERFJORD slipped her ropes and set off for her journey to Stavanger and Hirtshals, south through the Norwegian fjords.
To be continued….