Fred. Olsen – European Christmas Markets – 2022
Sails from Portsmouth
As the festive season begins, start your celebrations in style with discoveries of four European cities that really come to life at the ‘most wonderful time of the year’. Your visit to Hamburg is sure to be a highlight; German cities are renowned for their festivities and you’ll get to experience why. Traditional Christmas markets, packed with fairy-light adorned huts selling gifts, trinkets, tasty gingerbread and warming spiced wine await you. See sights such as St Nikolai Church and the Chilehaus, and enjoy a winter stroll along the banks of the River Elbe too, perhaps.
There are also Christmas-time charms to uncover in Belgian, Swedish and Danish cities. Balmoral will call at Zeebrugge for tours to the UNESCO-listed Bruges, where you’ll find highlights such as the 13th century Belfry, traditional chocolate shops and markets stalls amongst the decorated streets, and in Sweden, a later stay in Gothenburg provides a chance to see the Liseberg and Haga festive markets illuminated after dark. Your visit to Copenhagen, Denmark’s delightful capital, will be one to remember; Tivoli Gardens is a ‘must-visit’ at this time the year, with its displays of light and decoration, and stalls offering everything from Nordic handicrafts to local delicacies.
Friday 02 December 2022
Friday 02 December 2022
Departure from Portsmouth, United Kingdom
Board the ship mid-afternoon before you set sail.
Saturday 03 December 2022
Zeebrugge, (Bruges) Belgium
Often called the ‘Venice of the North’, Bruges is famous for its beautiful canals and historic buildings. The charming city centre is an UNESCO World Heritage site thanks to its cultural, architectural and historical importance. A combination of original gothic structures and modern, intelligent designs give Bruges a completely unique appearance and feel.
Sunday 04 December 2022
Enjoy a full day of cruising.
Monday 05 December 2022
Situated on Sweden’s west coast, the laid-back seaport of Gothenburg has considerable appeal for any visitor. Known as one of the friendliest cities in Europe, Gothenburg – Sweden’s second largest city – offers a vibrancy and fascination through its galleries, museums, boutiques, street cafes and Scandinavia’s largest and most popular amusement park, Lisberg, which has themed rides, performance venues and a landscaped sculpture garden. With spacious streets, leafy boulevards, and 17th century Dutch-designed canals at its heart, Gothenburg is a compact, accessible city. The harbour’s stylish buildings and bustling fish market are a must-see before heading to the enthralling districts of the city centre.
Tuesday 06 December 2022
With its vibrant atmosphere, modern culture and beautiful architecture, Copenhagen is the essence of Scandinavian cool. One of Europe’s oldest and most popular cities, Copenhagen is also one of the cleanest and most cosmopolitan. Its narrow streets are always busy with welcoming locals and are lined with colourful cafes, bars, shops and places to eat. Its bridges ring with cycling commuters and the pristine waterways make visiting this city a wonderful experience.
The historic centre of Denmark’s capital, an 18th-century rococo district, is home to the Royal Family’s Amalienborg Palace, Christiansborg Palace and Rosenborg Castle, surrounded by beautiful gardens and is the home of the Danish crown jewels. The Little Mermaid sculpture at Langelinje Pier is a must-visit attraction too.
Wednesday 07 December 2022
Kiel Canal Transit, Germany
Connecting the North Sea, at the mouth of the Elbe River, to the Baltic Sea at Holtenau, the Kiel Canal is one of the world’s busiest and most important shipping routes. Slicing a man-made path through the German countryside, this 61-mile-long marvel of engineering allows vessels to avoid 250 nautical miles of sea sailing on average, ensuring a faster and safer passage through Europe.
As picturesque as it is important, the Kiel Canal is a popular route for ‘pleasure’ crafts and smaller-sized cruise ships such as those in the Fred. Olsen fleet. Sailing slowly along the canal presents an opportunity to take in gorgeous scenes of lush-green countryside and a collection of interesting villages and towns flanking the still waters, and marvel at several impressive bridges. Maritime enthusiasts will delight at the various shapes, sizes and sheer volume of the ships and vessels navigating this busy waterway too.
Thursday 08 December 2022
Located on the River Elbe, Hamburg is the country’s largest port and regarded as Germany’s gateway to the world.
A vibrant, historic city boasting an impressive Hanseatic League heritage that harks back over 700 years, Hamburg’s maritime soul permeates the city. From its architecture to its cuisine, water is ever present in Germany’s principal port. The city is crossed by hundreds of canals, and spanned by 1,000 bridges. Near its centre, the charming Inner Alster Lake is dotted with boats and surrounded by divine cafes.
Hamburg is awash with historic buildings and monuments typical of Hanseatic culture. The steeple of St. Nikolai – a church almost destroyed in World War II, the 17th century Zollenbrücke Bridge and Hamburg Rathaus are must-visit sites. The central Jungfernstieg Boulevard connects the Neustadt (new town) with the Altstadt (old town), home to the impressive 18th century St. Michael’s Church.
Friday 09 December 2022
Enjoy a full day of cruising.
Saturday 10 December 2022
Arrival at Portsmouth, United Kingdom
After an early breakfast, disembark the ship for your journey home.
Balmoral Ship information
Balmoral is the largest of Fred Olsen’s cruise ships, on board there are nine decks two of which are for the sole purpose of leisure and relaxation.
The ship’s facilities include swimming pools & Jacuzzis, Fitness centre, Sundeck & golf nets, Atlantic Spa & Salon, library and card room. There are also boutiques, fine jewellery and Port shop. A selection of soft drinks, wines and beers are included and provided by a wide range of restaurants, cafés, grill and lounges on board.
During the day several talks, lectures and classes take place, while in the evening fantastic live performances including cabaret, stand-up comedy and concerts will keep you entertained throughout the duration of your cruise.
All of the 710 rooms are equipped with private facilities which include an en-suite shower (some may have a bathtub also), a desk, telephone, interactive television, hairdryer, air conditioning and tea and coffee making facilities. According to your needs you can choose between different room types: single, interior, ocean view, balcony rooms and suites.
|Date||Arrival||Departure||Port of Call|
Fri 02 Dec 2022
|Late PM||Portsmouth, United Kingdom|
|Sat 03 Dec 2022||Early AM||Late PM||Zeebrugge, Belgium|
|Sun 04 Dec 2022||Cruising|
|Mon 05 Dec 2022||Early AM||Late PM||Gothenburg, Sweden|
|Tue 06 Dec 2022||Early AM||Late PM||Copenhagen, Denmark|
|Wed 07 Dec 2022||Late AM||Early PM||Kiel Canal, Germany|
|Thu 08 Dec 2022||Early AM||Late PM||Hamburg, Germany|
|Fri 09 Dec 2022||Cruising|
|Sat 10 Dec 2022||Early AM||Portsmouth, United Kingdom|