Norway P&O Aurora
So the first cruise that I went on with my husband was to Norway P&O Aurora. We wanted to go away for a week. We didn’t know where and we didn’t have loads of money to spend. So my mum suggested going on a cruise. I was more than happy having done it before He really wasn’t keen. He just kept saying that he wasn’t going to enjoy it and kept thinking that it would be like a ferry. After some convincing, he finally agreed that he would give it a try. I wasn’t worried, I knew that he would love it.
So we booked a week long cruise to Norway. I’d never been before but had always wanted to visit. It can be really expensive, so cruising seemed like the perfect option. It meant we could see Norway without having to payout to actually stay there.
We sailed from Southampton on the Aurora. Check in was easy and efficient as I have always found with P&O. On this occasion, we arrived earlier than we would normally because we were being dropped. So weren’t able to wait for our arrival time. When we got there it was really quiet so they let us straight on to the ship. It was really nice to be able to wander round and have an explore while to the ship was relatively empty.
The Aurora is a lovely ship, not too big and enough to do and keep you entertained while you are on board. The Atrium of the ship is beautiful. Definitely the hub of the whole place and it gives it a real sense of occasion when you step on board.
The Aurora Cabin
We had an inside cabin on deck 11. It was lovely, not too small but with plenty of storage for everything we needed. A few people had advised us to get an inside cabin as there is so few hours of darkness when you are are sailing around Norway. I am so glad we did. It was always still in the middle of the day even midnight and I am a very light sleeper, so having no windows was brilliant. We were very close to the front of the ship and there was a door at the end of the corridor so you could get outside onto the front deck if you wanted to. We quite often went out there at night, we were standing at the front of the ship at midnight and it was still broad daylight.
The Restaurants and Bars
We had a table for 2 on the later sitting for dinner. This was perfect for us. This is what we always try and go for if it’s available. We really enjoyed the formal nights, getting the chance to dress up and really make an effort. The gala menus on these nights were lovely. We really liked the buffet restaurant. We chose to go there instead of on the night when it was an Indian buffet The curries were just amazing.
One of the highlights of the whole cruise for us was the Beach House Restaurant. On the evening we sailed out of the fiords (we just checked with reception which night that would be). We had to pay a small cover charge for eating there but it was definitely worth it. The restaurant is on one of the back decks of the ships, as long as the weather is good. So you are dining outside and sailing through the fiord. The food was brilliant but the views were spectacular.
Our favourite bar was the Crows nest. It was lovely to just sit and look out to sea during the day. Also to have a drink there after dinner in the evenings.
There were 4 stops in Norway on our cruise. Stavanger was the first stop. We didn’t book a trip as there was a free shuttle bus from the ship going back and forth all day. So we took the bus to the main town. We just went for a wander around the shops. Then had a bite to eat before heading back to the ship in the afternoon.
The next stop was Olden. This was the only port that we actually wanted to book a trip for. We went to the desk on the ship. My husband really wanted to book a trip to the Briksdal Glacier. However when we went to ask the last place had just been booked. They advised us that if we asked one of the guides when we got off the ship we may be able to book it ourselves. When we disembarked there were loads of people selling trips. We managed to easily book one at a fraction of the price of the ship. We had a taxi journey with 4 other people from the ship up to the base of the mountain. Then it’s about a 45-minute walk up to the Glacier and then back down and the taxi took us back to the ship. The walk wasn’t too difficult but it was very warm which probably made it a bit worse than normal, but it was definitely worth it. It was an amazing experience and definitely one I wouldn’t want to miss. The Glacier was just incredible.
The third port was Andalsnes. It was a small town in the middle of the fiords. There was a train ride that you could take up through the mountains if you wanted. We chose to wander around the town, have a coffee and just enjoy the scenery. The ship was docked pretty much in the town so you could just get on and off the ship as you wished. We went back on for some lunch and then got off again in the afternoon.
The last stop was Olden. Again we didn’t book a trip and there was a free shuttle to the main town. So we decided to see it on our own. We went down to the fish market and then to the local museum in the town. We had a really lovely time.
We don’t tend to go the theatre every night when we are on a cruise. We would rather go for dinner and a drink. But we did venture in there a couple of times. It was good. They showed that we had seen before but all done in a slightly different way. Still well-done none the less. The thing we really liked on the Aurora was the cinema. This was brilliant on sea days when it was just a bit too windy to sit out on a deck or use the pools. We went a couple of times and really loved this part of the entertainment.
So our cruise to Norway was amazing. A lovely ship for our first experience with P&O and Norway was just beautiful. I think it really helped that we had brilliant weather while we were away. Still, none the less I would recommend a Norway cruise. No flying needed and this just makes it so much easier. Also, this was the holiday that converted my husband to cruising. So I’m so glad it did, it just means I get to go on more cruises.
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Have you sailed to Norway? Have you ever sailed with P&O? Let me know in the comments below.