Updated post: 16/12/18 | December 2018
“Ten pounds for a pee? They must be bloody joking!”
The restaurant at the summit of Alesund’s Aksla Hill echoed with the woman’s estuary tones. She removed her sunglasses and took another look at the offending sign, as if to check if that would make a difference to the price. It didn’t.
Norway can be an achingly expensive country to visit. The cost of living is over 50% higher than in the UK. You will be lucky to get change out of a tenner (£10; 13 USD) for a pint of beer. A one-way ticket on local transport costs around £3.
But, equally, Norway is an achingly beautiful country that should be on everyone’s bucket list. Taking a cruise insulates you from these prices and is a more affordable way of seeing the country. And importantly, it gives you the opportunity to visit diverse towns and cities in a short space of time, and to cruise along some of Norway’s most scenic fjords.
P&O Cruises, which is part of the Carnival cruise giant, is the biggest operator catering to the British market. Ships sail from their Southampton base for half the year. Sailing with P&O is neither a splurge nor a budget cruise, but is a touch of affordable luxury. Launched in 2015, Britannia is P&O’s flagship and Britain’s largest cruise ship.
So how should you plan a cruise along the Norwegian fjords? And what can you expect from a cruise to Norway on HMV Britannia? Let me share firstly some general tips and then my experience of my cruise in May 2018.