Find Your Cruise...

  • Choose a date

berlitz logo



Overview: This handsome-looking mid-size ship suits middle-aged and older UK and Scandinavian passengers who want to cruise in a casual, unstuffy environment, in a ship with British food and entertainment. It’s a refreshing change for those who don’t enjoy larger, warehouse-size ships. But it does r


A Mini-cruise From Scotland To Orkney & Norway. by Cunningham, Kirkcaldy

A Mini-cruise From Scotland To Orkney & Norway.

Overall Rating: 5


Cruise Line:
Fred. Olsen Cruises
Cruise Ship:
Norwegian Fjords

Reviewed By: on
It's wonderful that we can now cruise from home. On the 4th of August last year (2007) we sailed with the M.S. Braemar (Fred Olsen Cruise Line) on a mini-cruise from Leith to Orkney and then on to Bergen, Norway. Leaving from a port so close to home (Fife) made such a difference and we look forward to repeating the experience.

This was our first cruise with Fred Olsen and will not be our last.
Having previously cruised on larger ships the Balmoral was a delightful change. It seemed a perfect size for us, neither too big nor too small and very passenger friendly indeed. The ship itself was immaculate and tastefully fitted out. Our cabin was comfortable and immaculately kept - the service was excellent.

After a quiet sail the Braemar arrived in Kirkwall at 8.00 a.m. on Sunday, 5th August. As soon as we berthed we were struck by the beauty and gentle landscape of Kirkwall harbour - it was a truly beautiful day. As we had just over 5 hours to spend there and loving to explore new places by ourselves, we did not take advantage of the excellent tours available, instead we had a wonderful morning wandering around the town and its outskirts. Although it was a Sunday, the Cathedral, the Bishop's Palace and some of the shops were open. After a lovely morning we were soon back on the Braemar for our lunch and although sorry to leave Kirkwall we hoped that one day we would return for a longer stay.

Once on board we enjoyed the Sail Away deck party with the Braemar Orchestra and the Cocktails of the Day!

We had lunch in the lovely Thistle Restaurant and the food and service could not be bettered. We enjoyed all our meals on board, sometimes eating in the Palm Cafe, without any concerns as we all had to use the hand hygiene gel before entering. This was used in all eating areas.

There is a gym, a card room and a lovely library (which kept me happy) on board and, of course, many other activities eg dance classes, gaming tables, carpet bowls, various lectures, to name but a few !
The excellent evening entertainment is held in the Neptune Lounge.

Arrived in Bergen on the morning of 6th August and stayed until lunchtime on Tuesday, 7th.

Once again we were lucky and the weather was beautiful. We loved Bergen - what a beautiful city it is. The Bryggen, with its lovely, ancient wooden buildings, the fish market, the lovely shops and gardens. There is a fantastic view of Bergen and the surrounding area from the top of the cable car lift - a trip worth taking. But again, exploring on foot is one of the best ways to get a flavour of local life in this lovely City and that's what we did!

On the 7th we sailed once more, this time we were returning to Newcastle where an excellent coach waited to take the Scottish contingent back to Leith, Edinburgh. The sail back was a happy part of our holiday, The staff on board gave us a wonderful time and we will always have happy memories of the mini-cruise to Orkney and Norway.

Times cruised before: 6-10
Sailed: August, 2007
Age: 65+

Quality of Food
Thistle Restaurant /Evening Meals/Fish

One of the lectures

Shore Excursions
Cable car in Bergen

Entertainment Manager / kept us smiling everytime we met him on board

Children's Facilities

Onboard Activities


Overall Rating

Need Help?

Do you have a question about a cruise that you are planning to go on? Ask your question here and visitors to the site, who have real cruise experience, will share their answers with you.

  • Post Your Own Questions
  • Read Answers From Real Cruisers
  • Help Other Cruisers With Their Questions
  • Be Part Of A Real Cruise Community
  • Expand Your Cruise Knowledge
Your Cruise Questions ANSWERED!

We can tailor make a cruise to your specific needs

Talk to our consultants

Talk to the team for friendly advice or to book your cruise

0800 408 6228

  • Opening Hours:
  • Monday-Saturday 8.00am - 10.00pm
  • Sunday 9.00am - 10.00pm

For more content and advice discover our

Cruise Community

Not found the Cruise Line infomation you need?

Cruise Line Homepages

Copyright 2016 Ltd | Company Reg No. 01827977 | VAT Reg No. 916 2376 24| ABTA Licence No. 78024
ATOL Licence No. 3385 | IATA Licence No. 91217862