By Corey Sandler, Destination Consultant Silversea Cruises
As we return to Copenhagen, some of us are looking forward to a natural phenomenon not much seen in the last two weeks: darkness at midnight.
We have been up north for the past 17 days, sailing from Copenhagen to Bergen and then up to the top of Norway at Nordkapp and then across to the attic of Russia: Murmansk, Solovetsky Island, and Arkhangelsk. Most of that time we were within the Arctic Circle, and most of that time we experienced the disconcerting experience of bright sunlight all the time.
I remember a visit we made to Longyearbyen in the Svalbard archipelago where we reached to a bit more than 80 degrees North latitude. I interviewed a woman there and asked her, “How can you stand being here in the Polar Night of December and January, when the sun never rises?”
She said: “That’s no problem. We can always turn on the lights.”
But, she continued, “It’s the Midnight Sun in summer that can drive you crazy. If a friend calls you up and asks if you want to go for a hike, you might say, ‘yes, sure’ and then look at your clock and see that it is three in the morning.”
Silver Cloud in Kristiansund, Norway on 4 July
We’ve had a touch of that here on the Silver Cloud. We eat very well aboard ship, and sometimes linger at the table until 10 p.m.; when we return to our suite, our butler has drawn the curtains to make it dark within. That’s fine, although there is an almost irresistible urge to open the curtains and look at the sea and the mountains and the glaciers. And when you do that, there’s the bright sun and it feels like morning again.
Many of our guests are leaving us here in Copenhagen, and we will miss them. More than 50 are continuing on the next leg, and we look forward to meeting about 200 new friends.
Klippfish in Kristiansund. Dried, salted cod.
High architecture and haute couture in Kristiansund
The next cruise is also quite an adventurous loop. We leave Copenhagen and head for Tallinn, Estonia and then Saint Petersburg, Russia for two days. Then on our way out of the Baltic we’ll have stops in Helsinki, Finland; Visby, Sweden; and Warnemunde, Germany before heading through the Kiel Canal and end our voyage by sailing up the River Thames and through the Tower Bridge to dock in London.
I’ll be blogging from each port of call. I’ll see you right here.
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