Our 4th stop is Trondheim, which is the 3rd largest city in Norway. It is a big University city so there are lots of young people around. There wasn't any excursion in particular that jumped out us and I had read that Trondheim is a very walk-able city so we decided to just get off and explore on our own. This was our first stop that really looked like a big city. As we got off the ship we were downtown so we had to walk a little bit get to the old city but it was well worth the walk. Old town has cute cobblestone streets and houses that back up to the canals. We got to the old bridge which was a site to see in it self and that took us over to the cathedral which is where all of Norway's Kings are crowned still to this day. It was another beautiful day so we grabbed a drink and a seat and just did some people watching in old town. We just happened to sit across the street from an interesting invention. There was a very steep hill going up the old fortress and this hill had a bike ramp which was sort of like a ski lift on a mountain. People would ride their bikes up to the ramp and then sort of lock the bike in while they sort of stood with the bike as it took them up the hill. We noticed that had to keep their balance or the bike would come off and they would either have to walk the rest of the way or start again. It was fun to watch.
Sea Day...turns into Sea Days
We were headed north to our next stop, Hammerfest, and a sea day was needed in between to reach that location. At 11:28 am we crossed over the Arctic circle! During this time of year the sun does not set at all above the arctic circle so it was strange to be awake after midnight and still see the sun in the sky - but then the name land of the midnight sun makes sense. Hammerfest and our next stop of Honningsvag sort of have a dispute over which is the northern most city in the World. Hammerfest used to be called the northern most city but in the 90s a new ruling came out that to be a city you needed 5,000 or more residents which Honningsvag did not. We were scheduled to visit both so either way we could say we visited the northern most city in the world! However, we got a little bad news, due to strong winds we were not going to be able to get into Hammerfest. We found out later that we were going to call on Tromso instead. We spent the day relaxing after 4 straight port days which was much needed.
We woke up the next morning expecting to be in Tromso but unfortunately the strong winds and high seas had moved a little south and meant we couldn't get into port that morning so we were getting another sea day. Then later in the day we got some more bad news that we were not going to be able to keep going north to Honningsvag due to the weather so we were heading south again. We were all very bummed since we were looking forward to the northern most stop.
As someone that has cruised many times and had my itinerary changed many times I understand that this is always possible but it is still disappointing. The captain and cruise line always has safety at the top of the list but they do the best to keep everyone as happy as possible too. We were already scheduled to have 2 sea days after Honningsvag so now that means we are looking at 5 sea days which can be a bit much if you were not already prepared for that. During our second unplanned sea day the Captain told us they had worked very hard to find us an alternative and as of now it seems to be working out that we will cruise through Sunnylvsfjord to Hellesylt. That means if it all works out we will have just 4 sea days before getting to our next stop. I am writing this during our 3rd sea day so still hoping this new plan works out and then we can continue on with the original scheduled itinerary. Of course the ship internet doesn't really work for posting blogs so I will have wait and see if our global hotspot works in our next port so I can post then. That brings me to a good point - do you want to be connected while on vacation or do you look forward to being unplugged? Cruising is a great way to unplug, especially on a sea day. For me travel is work and staying connected to my business is also part of my traveling so I need to stay connected. I am glad to have found Skyroam which is the global hotspot we use when we travel. If you only want to be partially connected you can either plan to use the cruise ship internet, which seems to be getting much better than it used to be. Another option would be to plan to just find wifi hotspots while in port. There almost always is somewhere very close to port that offers free wifi. You can always ask the crew as they pretty much know where all the free wifi can be found and you will see many of them gathered there using it.
*Update we made our new stop of Hellesylt and are enjoying this cute little village today!
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