The everyday blog of Richard Bartle.

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3:17pm on Wednesday, 12th July, 2017:



Our final port of call in Norway, Stavanger, is a prosperous town with a nice, walkable centre and much less rain than Trondheim. There are shops here that sell goods we want that we haven't seen before — it's just as well we came here last, as if we'd come here first we might have thought that all the big towns were like this and would have been somewhat disappointed. We bought some more stuff here, from several stuff shops that sold stuff.

There's a very agreeable old town, consisting mainly of white, wooden buildings from the 1860s and 1870s. They're therefore not really all that old, but they replaced earlier buildings that were lost in a fire. Handy hint: you can tell a real Norwegian town from a fake one because the fake one won't have lost a chunk of its old town to a series of fires across the centuries.

The cathedral in Stavanger is about as big as an English wool church, and a lot of it is relatively modern. It has some wonderful woodworking inside, though, especially the pulpit. I much preferred it to the cathedral in Trondheim, and it was only £3 to enter, too.

The ship docked very close to the town centre. If I were one of the locals, I might not be happy about this (we could hear the ship's announcements while wandering down shopping streets). Also, well, here's the view of central Stavanger from our cabin, er, stateroom, just before we went to lunch:

Here's what it looked like just after we returned from lunch:

I'm certain that the views across the harbour of the old town would be greatly improved if there were no cruise ships in the harbour.

Just before dinner last night, we had another evacuation so a helicopter could come and take a passenger to hospital. Not only was our cabin, er, stateroom out of bounds, but so was the restaurant. That was a little tiresome... So far on this cruise, I'm aware of three emergency rushes to hospital (one in port by ambulance, the other two by chopper) and one death. Given how old a lot of the passengers are here, I doubt some of the survivors will see Christmas. I haven't been on an adults-only cruise before, but they certainly have different problems to all-ages cruises.

We leave Norway this afternoon at 4:30pm. The crew are handing out union jacks for us to wave.

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Copyright © 2017 Richard Bartle (richard@mud.co.uk).