a - Answered a Question by Brewer (10 Nov 08 14:38)

Please book a private tour in St P - well worth it to avoid the 'lollipop' following crowds. I recommend alla-tour.com. Tallinn is beautiful and again can be easily strolled to from the ship.

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Aldrich - Answered a Question by Brewer (09 Nov 08 19:45)

There are 2 ports in Stockholm and you often do not know where you will dock until you are there....We docked at Stadsgarden. The ship offered a transfer shuttle to town for $12pp. We walked. Followed the blue line painted on the side walk to the port gates and then a straight flat walk along the front, over the bridge to Gamla Stan. It took around 30 minutes. In Helsinki it couldn't be easier - The ship offered a transfer shuttle to town for $12pp. We walked. Out of the barrier by the ship, up to the junction one block away, turned right and waited at the bus stop for the #16 which came almost immediately. An all day ticket for bus and tram cost €6pp. It is a 10 min bus ride into town, we got off at Esplanadi and wandered through the market looking at the fresh fruit and produce and handmade goods. Then we visited the Uspensky cathedral and Senate Square before jumping on the 3T tram for a 45 tour of the city. Afterwards we went back to the market and ate fresh made crepes from one of the many stalls there €18 for lunch for 2. We intended to catch the pub tram, which leaves at 2 and 3 from Rautatientori (one block to the right of the main train station) and costs €8 but we caught the bus back to the ship instead. Bus stop is on Esplanadi just before Stockmans department store. The allday bus ticket also covers you for the ferry to the fortress. I hope this helps.

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D & B - replied to Aldrich (10 Nov 08 15:23)

What a great answer this is, everything you need to know, I could do with this info when we go in two years.

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Cooke - Answered a Question by Brewer (10 Nov 08 10:56)

As Mr/Ms Aldrich says it depends where you are berthed in both cities. In Stockholm we were opposite the Vasa museum (well worth a visit) and after taking the courtesy bus (free form Ocean Majesty at that time, but not now) we realised that we could have walked easily, so walked back. In Helsinki we were about 200 yards from the market but a bus was still provided for those less mobile. If you search for the ports you can often find a list of ships and where they are scheduled to be berthed, but like everything in life, these are subject to change. Both cities are flat and easy to walk round. Note to Mrs Aldrich - Stockmann's is great, take your credit card. Just for the record, I liked Tallin best. Try to get to the old town before the crowds, it's beautiful.

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o'neil - Answered a Question by Brewer (10 Nov 08 15:44)

Your question has been correctly answered by Cooke, but I will add that in Helsinki, they have a superb tram system that goes through the city. If you choose your places of interest out, jump on the tram, it's a day ticket that also covers the ferries if you have time. The trams work clockwise and anti-clockwise, so if a place of interest is out on a limb, you don't have to go all the way round, just get another in the opposite direction. Good fun. Another company for you to chew over in St. Petersberg, is DENRUS, they do every tour imaginable, as I'm sure they all do, but recommendations can take the concern away. I don't want to be a Job's comforter, but we found the Tivoli Gardens in Copenhagen, overated and overpriced, akin to a small inferior Alton Towers. I hope you have at least a balcony cabin, if only for the arrival into Stockholm, gliding through the islands. Get up early with a cup of tea or coffee and enjoy it, you will have superb time. Happy cruising. Dave Dave.

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Somerville - Answered a Question by Brewer (12 Nov 08 11:17)

We cruised with NCL to the Baltic this September,and speak only of our experience. Stockholm - we were berthed near the city, and within walking distance.However our cruise stayed only a half day so we booked an excursion. We were given maps of the city when disembarking from local guides so it is possible to do your own thing if you have the time. Helsinki is a lovely city. We were given a map of the city on disembarktion by local people who directed us to a bus which took us to the city centre at a resonable price. From there we walked to the olympic stadium, not that far if you are an able walker, if not you are deposited in the city, just a short walk from the harbour front, and the market. Hope this is of some help. We really enjoyed the trip.

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Lee - Answered a Question by Brewer (12 Nov 08 12:00)

If you are berthed in the cities or get a free shuttle bus in then just walk or catcah a local bus or tram. Just do a bit of research before you go. We did the Baltic last year with Holland America and it was wonderful. We have given up on doing tours wth the cruise companies, (after doing so many), unless it is the only was of seeing an area in the short time available. We just get off and walk or catch a local bus or tram. This is what we did in both of these cities and we had a great adventure each time finding our way around and visting the thigngs we wanted to see. Just make sure you leave anough time to get back to the ship. Cheers steve.

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Robson - Answered a Question by Brewer (12 Nov 08 20:27)

I Know Helsinki and it is beautiful, even when under Ice and snow - we go regulary as our daughter lives there. Its a lovely city and I dont think you will have much of a problem getting around but it isnt cheap.

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