In just a few days, I’ll be joining Saga Sapphire on her 15-night ‘Land of Ice and Fire’ voyage and I’m starting to get quite excited. I’ve never visited Iceland, so it’s going to be a whole new experience and up to now, I am pleased to say that I have heard only good things about the country. In fact, people keep telling me that I’m in for a real treat. Our ports for Iceland are Seydisfjordur, Akureyri (overnight), Isafjordhur and Reykjavik, so I’m going to have the opportunity to see quite a lot of the country. Sapphire will also visit Kirkwall in the Orkney Islands (one of my favourite places), Belfast in Northern Ireland (another place I’m quite fond of) and Liverpool. I’ve never been to Liverpool before and it doesn’t look like I’ll get to see much of it during our call there, either – I’m going to be heading across the border into Wales for the day instead. I don’t want to give everything away as to what I’ll be doing in each place during the cruise, but I can tell you that whale watching, a steam railway, waterfalls and some beautiful nature parks will be involved.
This will be my 4th cruise on Saga Sapphire and as she is one of my favourite ships, I can’t wait to get back onboard and get this cruise underway. I’m looking forward to seeing familiar faces, to the delicious food and a few evenings in Cooper’s – my favourite of all her bars. Saga Sapphire has such a good atmosphere and I always leave her having made new friends and collected more wonderful travel memories. Honestly, I can’t say enough good things about Saga Cruises! You really should go and see for yourself – tell them CruiseMiss sent you. 😉
Although I am looking forward to many things about the cruise, there is one thing that is intriguing me because it’s a natural phenomena that I’ve never experienced before: the midnight sun. We are visiting Iceland at a time of year that offers daylight virtually 24/7. Iceland’s longest day of the year (Summer Solstice) is usually around June 21 and on that day the sun sets just after midnight and rises again just before 3 a.m. in Reykjavik, however, the midnight sun in Reykjavik only actually occurs between June 16 and 29, as these are the only days on which the sun sets after midnight. The further north in the country you go, the more daylight hours increase. Although I’ve never experienced the midnight sun in full effect, I did notice during a cruise to Norway last year, in May, that the days were incredibly long. I remember the sun setting one evening at around midnight and then it was rising again by 4:30 a.m., it was quite incredible because the night sky didn’t ever seem to be as dark as it should be – as dark as I am used to seeing it when at home. I’m really looking forward to experiencing it and seeing if it changes my sleeping pattern at all. I’d imagine if you were out on deck or ashore at 11:30 p.m. and there was still bright sunshine, you might not feel as tired? I don’t know, I could be wrong, but it will be interesting to see if it does change anything.
So, that’s my next ocean jaunt…time to get the Icelandic Krona ordered and the suitcases out, again!