I'm just back from sailing to the Norwegian Fjords on the Queen Mary 2. Cruising should be in my genes. My parents met whilst working for Cunard in the 50s and one of my earliest memories is the thrill of standing on the quayside waiting for my father to sail into Southampton after a round the world voyage, probably mid 1960s. Fast forward to July 2010, this time I am on board and the party spans three generations: grandmother, me and my daughter, aged 11.
Much as I loathe airports (taking off my shoes really was the final straw), I was skeptical about cruising. Mother's tales of grandeur and elegance surely could not exist today. Yet everyone I spoke to, young and old, seemed to rave about the Queen Mary 2, with its elegant black hull giving a nostalgic feel.
I was skeptical about cruising. Mother's tales of grandeur and elegance surely could not exist today.
Whisked on board we enter a small but perfectly and cleverly designed cabin on Deck 11 (perfect for sneaking into the Queen's and Princess Grill private Jacuzzi), with a generous sized balcony with a glass front. There are two good sized wardrobes and masses of hangers to swallow up all those evening dresses. How lovely not to be thinking about baggage allowance for a change. I pack ten pairs of shoes, just because I can. We are told in advance which nights are elegant casual, semi formal and formal, but the ladies seem to relish the chance to dress to the nines every night, me included.
An outside cabin with a glass fronted balcony is a must on this voyage. The stunning scenery is not to be missed, especially very early in the morning as she glides through steep gorges with waterfalls tumbling down. The itinerary is perfect - a mix of 3 full days at sea to explore the ship and 4 days to stretch my legs on dry land and discover the ports of Alesund, Flam, Geirainger and Bergen.
Luxury Insider: Tina Morgan 16/08/10
Tina Morgan has spent the last 20 years promoting famous hotels and tour operators. She has recently launched www.newsworthyhotels.co.uk/ to train independent hotels to do their own PR.