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Silver Travel Book Club - Book of the Month - March 2018

Have never been on a cruise but fancy sailing on the Hurtigruten along the coast of Norway!!

I have only been on one cruise but it was memorable for me as I met my husband on board! Twenty four years ago I sailed from Plymouth on a Mediterranean tour with a company called Four Winds which chartered several smaller ships. My husband was working as the ship’s lecturer but also had to dance with the single lady passengers! So we met on the dance floor and I also joined all the shore trips. Our first proper date ( when he wasn’t on duty) was to go ashore to Gibraltar. Unfortunately it was too windy to go on the cable car and see the monkeys. I thoroughly enjoyed all my trips ashore but the best was arriving in Seville at Fiesta time. We were invited into the bodegas and offered manzanilla and encouraged to dance the flamenco. Unfortunately the cruise company went bust soon after so my husband to be left and we were married within the year. We have revisited some of the ports of call in our camper van and it was lovely to spend more time in Seville and Cadiz.
I would now like to go on a tour of the Norwegian fjords as I have been told how beautiful it is.

Thank you @fossil… never overlook the obvious, I shall do that. I think I was just a little sad when Swan Hellenic went bust because they were the first to do what they did….

Teens wrote:

I wonder if similar companies exist who offer a similar service now…. one so often sees the really big liners that seem to dominate their surroundings.

There are many @Teens have a look on the main Silver Travel site. Go to ‘Find a Holiday’ and click on ‘Cruise Companies’

London

I am in the position of having been both on a cruise and I have had the opportunity to read the book.

My cruise experience was several times with Swan Hellenic, who ceased trading a little while back. They offered insightful and well thought out itineraries with guest speakers from the world of archaeology and art history. They had a small boat which didn’t feel intrusive when visiting small islands of Greece. I wonder if similar companies exist who offer a similar service now…. one so often sees the really big liners that seem to dominate their surroundings.

The book was a very different experience, the characters were travelling on a much bigger ship – and an interesting thriller of the children from two families going missing in Central America.

I would love to go to the Baltic sea. To visit Estonia, Finland, & I have always wanted to see the beautiful Ffords of Norway & the island of Sweden. All this Nordic dramas have encouraged me.

Being more adventurous I would love to go to Japan. I met a charming woman teaching me Tai Chi & she said how beautiful it was & I would adore the blossom. The culture would be fascinating. The famous encircled castles & Temples such as KinKuji. The acres of blooms & gardens which Japan is famous for.

I have only been on a Cruise to Europe, starting at Genoa on to Tangiers & Cadiz, Lisbon & in the Bay of Biscay the Doctor had to give me a jab with a huge needle as I was ill in the rough weather! I love travel & learning about places.

Yes that’s correct, we’d love to read about your most enjoyable cruise or the destination you would like to cruise to. And the best two entries will each win a copy of our March Book Club prize – Do Not Become Alarmed.
Good luck to all Silver Travellers!

London
We’d love to hear what exotic destinations you would like to visit on a cruise, or perhaps what your most enjoyable cruise has been already?

I understood this thread, like all previous ones for the Book Club, to be about experiences concerned with the topic of the month’s book – hence all the fascinating snippets about cruises people have been on. I’m less interested in the wish list of destinations – we’ve had too many of those posts in the past of people loving to win the monthly prize but contributing little else to the forum.

I’ve enjoyed the posts by @SA-Takkies and @DRSask which have been carefully thought out, informative and interesting. We could do with more posts of this calibre on the forum…

Last Edited by ESW at 06 Mar 10:34
ESW
Lincolnshire

Many thanks @Barrowman for highlighting that – but the cruise-focused comments on this month’s Book Club Forum thread are because the plot of ‘Do Not Become Alarmed’ is based around a cruise in Central America, and because we asked for everyone’s cruise experiences and aspirations to win a copy of the book, and to tie in with Jennie’s monthly holiday prize, a trip with Saga Cruises:

We’d love to hear what exotic destinations you would like to visit on a cruise, or perhaps what your most enjoyable cruise has been already? Leave a comment on this Forum thread – or on Silver Travel’s Facebook page – and the best two entries from Silver Travellers will win a copy of Do Not Become Alarmed.

Thoughts about the book, its location and general cruise experiences all appreciated with this in mind

Andrew

The first cruise I went on was to Alaska and the Yukon Territory with Holland America. It left from Vancouver, Canada and included a land portion. Once inland we also cruised along the Yukon River to Eagle, Alaska and traveled by train three times, once from Skagway, Alaska to Fraser, British Columbia and then into and out of Denali National Park. The train from Skagway takes you from sea level in Skagway to 2,865 feet in just 20 miles to the Summit, through Tunnel Mountain and by Lynn Canal, Mount Harding and the Chilkat Range along the Whitepass and Yukon Route which was designated an International Historic Civil Engineering Landmark in 1994. From the train you can see the trail the old prospectors took before the railway was built. It is still littered with debris and the weathered bones of 3,000 horses which died carrying the prospectors’ ton of supplies they were required to have in order for the RCMP to permit them to travel the route to the gold fields. The trip on the McKinley Explorer was a four hour trip into Denali National Park from Fairbanks, Alaska. The first floor of the train is the dining cars and the upper floor is the observation cars. Each carriage has it’s own bar and staff who take very good care of you. We had breakfast on the train and as we were approaching Denali station, we saw a Moose swimming across the lake. As for wildlife, in Denali we went on an eight hour wilderness safari in a kitted out bus fitted with monitors that drop down from the ceiling and the driver has a movie camera up front. When someone spots wildlife they yell out the direction based on a clock face, the driver stops the bus and gets the camera focussed so everyone can see the wildlife on the screen. Over the course of the afternoon we saw caribou, countless Dahl sheep and grizzly bear mums and their cub(s), fox, wolf, merlin, golden eagle, and moose. No polar bears though, @Silvertravellerfan. The next day we took the train again but this time it was an eight hour trip to Anchorage, Alaska for our flight home. We had lunch and dinner on the train and enjoyed many more hours of scenic views, wildlife and attentive service. Our narrow escape was the earth quake that occurred in Anchorage just after we left!
The second cruise I went on was, like @Sue_95, to the Baltic with two wonderful days exploring St. Petersburg and visits to Copenhagen, Stockholm, Helsinki, Tallinn, and Gothenburg. Before going, St. Petersburg was the main attraction for me but Tallinn holds a very close second as it was delightful. All in all it was a great trip with Royal Caribbean.
I would love to go on a cruise to see the Northern Lights in Norway. I have seen them in white in Canada a few times but long to see them in colour. Once was on a canoe trip many years ago, a rather rustic cruise, and we sat by a waterfall in northern Manitoba after pitching our tents for the night and watched the sky light up.

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