Saturday, 24 March 2012

Return to Olympia

This blog entry is nowhere near as portentous as its title suggests; it merely indicates that for the second time in four weeks I have visited the exhibition centre at Olympia, West London. Last time my wife and I visited to go to the 'Who Do You Think You Are?’ show; this time it was to visit the ‘Cruise Show’, which is sponsored by the Telegraph Media Group Limited.

In past years I have used the opportunity to pick up lots of information about the various cruise lines to use with my students, but as I am now retired my wife and I were able to enjoy looking on own behalf. We entered lots of prize draws and picked up quite a few promotional gifts (mainly tote bags and pens). We also spent some time talking to several cruise line representatives about special and/or unique cruises that we might wish to go on in the future.

In particular we were very taken with what Hebridean Island Cruises had on offer. They operate a very small cruise ship – Hebridean Princess – that only takes fifty passengers and has a crew of thirty eight. Its cruises last from four to ten nights and encompass the Western Isles as far as St Kilda as well as the Orkney and Shetland Isles. This is very different from the sort of cruise we have done before, and it covers an area that neither my wife nor I have every spent much time in.


We also looked at cruises to the Black Sea. I particularly want to visit Odessa and Sevastopol within the next three or four years, and it appears that several cruise lines do go there at various times during the year. The only problem is that most of them as fly-cruises … and my wife refuses to fly anymore.

6 comments:

  1. Why do I see Crimean gunboat models in your future? ;)

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  2. St. Kilda is worth a look , visited it via a very small fishing boat about 25 years ago - warning VERY rough seas though

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  3. Pat G,

    Anything is possible ... or even probable!

    All the best,

    Bob

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  4. Mosstrooper,

    The various itineries offered by the cruise line cover a wide range of different places around the west and north of Scotland ... all of which my wife and I would love to visit.

    I think that they only visit St Kilda once or twice each year, and only then when the weather is likely to be favourable.

    All the bet,

    Bob

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  5. Hi Bob

    The Queen seemed to like her Hebridean cruises.

    Jim

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  6. Jim Duncan,

    Although it is mentioned in passing on the company's website that the Queen used the ship on her tour around that part of Scotland, the brochure does not.

    I understand from reports in the press that the tour was very successful, and following Her Majesty's footsteps would be interesting.

    All the best,

    Bob

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