Thursday, August 26, 2010

Viking Lomonosov

The Viking ship Mikhail Lomonosov is a reconditioned river boat from the Soviet era (I heard she was commissioned in 1970.) Unfortunately the ship is showing her age in some ways. My tiny cell-like cabin had a mildly unpleasant odor.

The ship carries 202 passengers and my sailing was almost entirely full. About half the passengers were German-speaking and half English-speaking, and each group had its own dining room, except at breakfast when we all ate together. The English-speaking group was mainly British but there were also a number of Americans and a few from other countries.

Average age of passengers must have been over 65, and most were couples. Luckily there were also a number of friendly women travelling alone. Most of the few young people were travelling with their parents. It was a well-travelled crowd that included many teachers and retired teachers.

River cruising is different from ocean cruising, with less entertainment and fewer facilities aboard. The emphasis is on shore excursions. Unfortunately, a number of the more interesting shore excursions required extra and substantial payment. It was also possible to wander alone on shore, or hire a taxi but because of the langauge problem I don't think many people did this.


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