Ira Visits the North Pole - Almost

Dec 20th, 2018, 05:43 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 74,153
Ira Visits the North Pole - Almost

Hello All,

My Lady Wife and I recently returned from a 10-day voyage on the P&O Aurora. This is a quick report of our adventure.

We flew ATL à LHR on Delta. It was a typical Delta flight.
We were taken from LHR to Southampton by Smiths for Airports - Home - highly recommended.
We stayed overnight in a “Privilege Room” at
This is an old hotel in an even older building. Our “room” comprised a good-sized bathroom, a large bedroom and an even larger sitting room with a view from the second floor over the courtyard. The hotel is very clean and well maintained. Recommended for those who like old buildings with squeaky floors.

The weather was cold and rainy, so we stayed in and sampled the potables and comestibles at the bar until it was time for bed. Very nice.

Next day we cabbed to the Mayflower terminal where, with the help of Special Assistance, we boarded The Aurora. The whole procedure went very smoothly. (One of the few privileges of getting old.)

The ship:
She will appeal to those who are less than enthused by the contemporary atmosphere, although she does rock and pitch more than you will find on the larger, newer boats.
We found the service to be excellent: the cabin (EB – deluxe balcony) better than most; especially the drapes that close off the sitting area from the bedroom area: the public spaces to be much to our liking – especially Andersons: the background music to be discreet – mostly: and the food totally in keeping with traditional British dining of the late ‘50’s and ‘60’s – not very good, except for the tea – PG Tips.
We stocked up on single packets of Nescafe and Mount Hagen as alternates to the ship’s product.
The orange juice was freshly squeezed each morning.

We found that if you were not in the mood to share a table at Medina checking in at the desk and then taking the buzzer back to Anderson’s (short walk) for a libation or 3 was a good way to start the evening.

Our fellow passengers were made up of two groups – those over 70 (the majority) and those under 50. There was a decent muster of young marrieds – some with children.

We chose the “anytime” dining in Medina. Nice room. First class service.
We had dinner at Sindhu one evening – very pleasant Indian cooking brewed for British taste.
I discovered a new love – Gunpowder Gin with Fevertree Aromatic tonic.

We did not partake of the “entertainment”.

The Voyage:
The itinerary is such as to allow for a very leisurely sojourn - lots of sea days, few “must see’s” to require your attention. The weather was warm for that part of the world (-3 to +8 C), and the skies were mostly overcast – both conditions that work against seeing The Lights. We did, however, catch a view (or maybe 2) of a long, cigar-shaped object glowing a pale green (ionized N2) with occasional flecks of red (O2). The captain reported sighting a whale, which some other passengers verified.

Not seeing the sun for several days was an interesting experience.

The fjords are spectacular.

We shall return in Summer 2020 for a voyage aboard The Arcadia.

I shall upload some pix ASAP.


Last edited by Moderator4; Dec 20th, 2018 at 06:38 AM.
ira is online now  
Dec 20th, 2018, 06:39 AM
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Fixed the title for you.
Moderator4 is offline  
Dec 20th, 2018, 08:55 AM
Join Date: Jul 2006
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What was your itinerary, Ira? Scandinavia?
HappyTrvlr is online now  
Dec 20th, 2018, 11:16 AM
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Nicely done, Ira. looking forward to the photos.
annhig is offline  
Dec 23rd, 2018, 01:32 PM
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Great report Ira. Looking forward to the pics.
walkinaround is offline  
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