Baltic 2011

Paris and the Baltic Countries - July 2011

We left home on July 6 and finally returned on July 31. In the interim, we spent two and a half days in Paris where Judy gave me a whirlwind tour. We then took a train to Le Havre where we boarded Windspirit. We were delighted to meet our old friend, Captain John Clark upon embarkation. We had an eventful and sometimes adventurous voyage, including 36 hours of Force 9 gale winds and 18 foot waves in the German Bight (North Sea) that caused us to miss a port in Norway and an overly macho Russian missile cruiser captain who almost rammed us upon arrival in St. Petersburg. All in all, a wonderful trip!

  • We started in Paris. The weather was cool and rainy.
  • Our first stop was Dieppe, where we became a tourist attraction.
  • After Dieppe, we sailed to Oostende, Belgium. From there we took a train to Brugges.
  • We then sailed to Ijmuiden. One day we went to Amsterdam and the next we went to Haarlem, a truly delightful town.
  • We were then supposed to sail to Kristiansand in Norway, unfortunately, the weather got in the way. We had an extra sea day sailing (motoring very slowly, more precisely) through the German Bight in the North Sea.
  • Finally, we reached land and some nice weather in Oslo. We were in front of the Parliament Building six days before it was bombed.
  • We then went to Gotenburg, Sweden (home of Volvo). We traveled to Skarhamn and Kladsholmen.
  • Our next port was Aarhus, Denmark.
  • Copenhagen was our next port of call.
  • We proceeded to Warnemunde, Germany. We had wonderful tours of Potsdam and Berlin with our guide Flo.
  • From Germany we returned to Sweden, docking in Visby on Gotland.
  • We then went to Stockholm, where we also disembarked at the end of our travels.
  • We had a delightful day in Helsinki.
  • Next we stopped in the charming old town of Tallin, Estonia.
  • Before returning for our final day in Stockholm, we spent to very busy days under the careful stewardship of our friend and guide Val touring St. Petersburg.