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Nordic Paradise: Volume V


Image: Snowy scenes as we sailed towards North Cape. Norway, 2022.

Our most northern destination on our voyage was Honningsväg, located on the island of Magerøya. Each time we visited, it was a windy, winter whiteout of snow blizzards and wavey water. I was actually pretty stoked to be visiting Nordkapp on my first trip. Nordkapp, or North Cape, is located 71o10’21” north, and is the northernmost point of mainland Europe. This place really did feel like the top of the world. It has a commemorative museum where you can find out about the history of the location, including the rearing of reindeer throughout the seasons, the Sami culture, the midnight sun and of course, the northern lights! I highly recommend taking the time to look around inside, and to go and watch the new panoramic film, it’s very moving and inspiring. There is also a cute gift shop and yes, I did by some souvenirs! One was a teeny tiny globe within a snow globe and a stunning book on Winter Whales. I also sent a postcard from the most northern postbox in Europe!

Image: Me living my best life at 71o10’21” north. North Cape, Norway. 2022.

During my other trips to Honningsväg, I participated in some boat training on the zodiacs with the Expedition Team. I was dressed head to toe in layers (upon layers) because it was about -6oC during the day and -13oC at night. It also happened to be full on blizzarding during my boat training, so naturally I got drenched. It was super fun to drive around MS Maud and see her from the water. I am hoping to gain more zodiac experience by the end of the year and hopefully will be (safely) zooming some guests around to landing sites a l i t t l e bit further south in the world... It’s a lot harder than it looks though, you really have to know your port side from your starboard side!

Image: Nordkapp monument in blizzard conditions. Norway, 2022.

On my final adventure up to Honningsväg, after visiting North Cape during the day, our Captain decided to take us the scenic route down to our next port, and we actually sailed north of North Cape! We could see the monument from the sea, and it was an incredibly poignant sight, along with a beautiful setting sun. We also spotted a minke whale on our starboard side and saw the blow and dorsal fin break the water’s surface a couple of times. Minkes have very discreet blows due to their small size, but as it was much colder this far north, it could be seen clearly. They also have white ‘armbands’ on their pectoral fins which is a good indicator of this species.

I happened to be out on the helipad of deck 9 watching the sunset and managed to point out the minke whale to some eager and keen-eyed passengers. It was great to add a cetacean sighting to the list!

Image: Sunset over North Cape, Norway. 2022.

I’ve had such an incredible time travelling up the west coast of Norway to reach our most northerly point. It’s been fascinating to see the weather conditions change as we crossed the Arctic circle and experience a Norwegian blizzard! Tune in soon to hear about my adventures as we turn around and set sail back south.

See you soon!

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