Taxi for the mountaineer !

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Sailing out of Flam to head down Aurlandsfjord and into Sognefjord would have been spectacular enough, with sheer cliffs on either side rising to snow-topped peaks, from which meltwater streams led to precipitous waterfalls.
To make it even better, we made the first part of the journey on the bridge of Queen Victoria, thanks to an invitation from Captain Paul Wright.
The calm of the operation, overseen by two Norwegian pilots, was broken only by a moment of cruel humour when a late-returning crew member turned up on the quayside just as the last rope had been cast and the powerful bow thrusters began to push the ship away from shore.
For the ship, there was no turning back. From his position at the controls on the starboard bridge wing, Capt Wright opened a window to shout down.
“Taxi !” was the cry, and the errant crewman set off to find a driver prepared to embark on the seven-hour overnight drive to Stavanger where he could rejoin the ship.
As he was left to contemplate the consequences of not keeping an eye on the clock while he went rock climbing in the afternoon, the other officers on the bridge agreed that there were worse places in the world to be stranded ashore.
It was generally agreed that Ny-Alesund, on the remote Norwegian island of Spitsbergen 400 miles north of the mainland, might be the last place anyone would want to make that mistake, although it remained unclear whether a castaway there would have more to fear from the polar bears or the 80 local inhabitants.

By | 2009-07-18T14:36:35+00:00 18 July 2009|Cruise Destinations|0 Comments

About the Author:

John Honeywell is a travel writer specialising in cruise ships and cruise travel. Winner of CLIA UK's Contribution to Cruise award 2017.

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