It is 5.10am on Thursday July 19th and the sun rose 30 minutes ago, the sky is baby blue with the merest hint of yellow/pink low on the horizon. It is cool at 10/51 degrees and we have a very light northerly breeze at 7 knots. Our speed as we head south south east towards Bergen is 11 knots; we are threading our way through the host of islands that separate the town from the North Sea. We are approaching the channel that will lead us into the port and we will have to enter it and then a 90 degree turn around the bottom of the final peninsula that makes Bergen such a safe haven from the ravages of storms. There are wooded and rocky islands dotted everywhere that we have to navigate past, the water is as still and mirror-like with the slightest of ripples as the ship passes or the breeze catches it. An hour has passed and we are passing through a much more built up residential area, still comprising some islands but mostly the mainland suburbs of the town.
We have arrived in this working port and we are one of 4 ships visiting today. The Queen Victoria, Ocean Princess and Columbus 2 are joining us. We have berthed at the Jekteviken Pier close to the Ocean Princess; others are berthing in other areas in the port. Passengers are not allowed to walk in the dock area so the shuttle bus is mandatory and free I got off the ship at 8.30 and it was only a 10 minute shuttle bus to town. It dropped me by a very pleasant park on Rasmus Meyer Alle and I wandered around for a bit, found an ATM for some running around cash and then sought out a café near to the market. Coffee is a big thing in Norway and there is a good flow of customers. They also have free Wi-Fi which is excellent.
We are sailing at 2pm so I want to get back in plenty of time.