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Braemar - Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines - cruise ship review and photos.

Late Sunday evening Braemar really proves that she can handle bad weather as she crosses the northern part of the North Sea on her way to the Norwegian coast. The next morning sees us sailing past windswept rocks and mountains. Sunshine, clouds and rain fight for attention as our Captain sets course for Mly (pronounced as  Mhleu) at the entrance to the Nordfjord.  

Your roving reporter

With the sun lighting up the dark sea, with rainbows and small hamlets, mountains and islands - this is Norway at its best. Captain Martin Birkeland steers the ship close to shore so we can enjoy the breathtaking scenery to the fullest. This hostile coast is sparsely populated and looking at the black skies that loom on the horizon, I think I understand why!

Escaping the bitter cold we head for the welcoming glow of the Braemar Room, our favorite haunt on board. After another cappuccino (Fred. Olsen charges for anything other than regular coffee or tea) we are ready to face the cold again. Armed with binoculars and notebooks, our fellow travelers seem much more hardened than we are - what is it with the Brits that they are seemingly untouched by the cold?

We have just finished our lunch as Braemar approaches the town of Mly, located on the island of the same name in the mouth of the Nordfjord., Sheltered by the mountains from the force of the open sea, the fishery port of Mly is pretty uninteresting and the main sight here is the West Cape with its battered lighthouse. With no excursions booked, we take a leisurely stroll into town, where we discover two supermarkets, one shoe shop and one hotel. That afternoon, the weather shows its friendlier side and the aft decks of Braemar actually turn into a desired location for some wrapped-up sunbathing. Others join Lauren in the Atlantis Spa who presents the ultimate treatment for weight loss, fluid retention or swollen ankles.

The lines are cast at 8pm and Captain Birkeland announces that he will sail straight to Olden, arriving there tonight at 11.30pm. After another gin & bitter lemon in the Braemar Room, we head for the Neptune Lounge. This attractive showlounge houses half of Braemar's guests. Tonight is British night and all guests are asked to dress in red, white and blue. Waving miniature Union Jacks, the three of us happily participate in a 'jolly good' British sing-along, leading us from the bonny banks of Loch Lomond to the white cliffs of Dover. It is fun, without pretences and definitely adds to the 'family feeling' that is so apparent on board this cozy ship. 

The wild Norwegian west coast

Scenic cruising at its best
A morning of scenic cruising
Typical Norwegian building at Maloy
Maloy
Braemar at Maloy
Braemar's three-deck high Atrium

Local ferry at Maloy

Maloy
Braemar at Maloy
Maloy
Braemar at Maloy
Ship models in the Braemar Room
Bart and Lucy feeling very un-British...
British Night with Asst. Cruise Director Priscilla from Manila and Cruise Director Anthony Borradaile

 

Photos and text: 2007 Bart de Boer - www.ShipParade.com

First published on November 4, 2007

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