Cruising Mates Forum: Cruise reviews, chat, answers and information. cruisingmates.co.uk • View topic - Saga Pearl - Flavours of Canaries - Oct 18

Saga Pearl - Flavours of Canaries - Oct 18

Saga Pearl - Flavours of Canaries - Oct 18

Postby khkate » 26 Nov 2018 16:42

This cruise diary was created from my daily posts on FB. Only four more cruises on this little ship before she is pensioned off.

Itinerary was Portsmouth - Funchal (overnight) - La Palma - La Gomera - Fuerteventura - Lisbon (overnight) - Portsmouth. We should have called in Leixoes, but instead called in at Lisbon.

Tuesday 30th October - Portsmouth
Good evening from Saga Pearl in English Channel, just left Portsmouth. Excellent journey down, collected early and shared car with Val from Corsham (we shared car with her last year for Med cruise). Were at Portsmouth by noon, check in was a bit chaotic, boarded at 1300. Lovely cabin, better position than I thought and lots of extra goodies awaited us - free mini bar, wine, spritzer and huge box of chocs. Met up with several past cruising friends, enjoyed a Buck's Fizz at departure. Left 30 mins late due to late arrival of some passengers. Harry quite relaxed back on the ship. Just getting ready for dinner and then an early night I think. Up in verandah for dinner and it was quite cold up there. Maître d came to welcome us back and I commented how cold it was. Next thing, a waiter appeared with two blankets. Certainly, we were nice and cosy during the meal.

Wednesday 31st October – AT SEA
Good afternoon all from Saga Pearl in the Bay of Biscay. Calm seas with a gentle swell and temp this morning was 13 degrees with high cloud and a 3-metre swell. Temp this afternoon up to 15, but a keen wind, just a 1-metre swell. Was in bed last night by 2030 and slept right through to 0700 this morning. Had a very lazy day, did sea stretch this morning, otherwise just sat and read/relaxed. Good crowd of passengers on board, many familiar faces, 90 newcomers to Saga. Public areas currently being decorated for Halloween. Simon Fricker is evening show tonight.

Thursday 1st November – AT SEA (Formal)
Good afternoon all from Saga Pearl on the Atlantic somewhere off the coast of Portugal. It’s been a very drizzly overcast day and strong winds but 17 degrees. Excellent evening last night all waiters dressed up and some scary make up applied too. Another lazy day today - did sea stretch this morning then did golf putting (H came 2nd). Excitement at breakfast as a wee birdie flew around the Verandah - soon captured and released outdoors. Then there was a Code Alpha (someone took a tumble as they exited the lift). Seas are calmer, although some people still stumbling about. Sat last night at dinner with a couple who are new to Saga, normally cruise Cunard and so far enjoying it. Sat at lunchtime at table for 6 and was mostly ignored. There has been a few sightings of fin whales and dolphins around the ship today, quite close. Oh, and just had a phone call, asking if we would like to join the captain at his table tonight. I asked the captain about the Vistafjord painting; he has never seen it and suspects that Horst Pint ( a former hotel director) may have snaffled it. For Funchal it appears we will not be at the cruise terminal (so cant check on the saga rose harbour wall art) as we are berthing the other side. That will make it an easy walk into town. Captain was mentioning that we have been lucky in dodging weather systems. However, I gather sapphire may not be so lucky as she heads back to Lisbon and Southampton. He said 13-metre seas were being forecast coming into UK from Atlantic towards Ireland.

Friday 2nd November – AT SEA
Good afternoon from Saga Pearl in the Atlantic still heading towards Funchal. Another lazy day relaxing after the sea stretch session this morning. Weather has been dry, but still a chilly wind but air temp now 20. Seas calmed right down, almost hard to tell one is on a moving ship, apart from being surrounded by water. Looks like we may get into Funchal ahead of schedule tomorrow.

Saturday 3rd November – Funchal, Madeira
Good afternoon from Saga Pearl in Funchal. Woke this morning to white horses and grey forbidding clouds but as we neared Funchal, it al brightened - and warmed - up. We arrived at 1100, earlier than scheduled and we are on the north pier by the Cristian Ronaldo museum - a Costa ship and Koningsdam (Holland America) are at the cruise terminal. Temp this afternoon has been 23 but very humid. Spent a couple hours up on the sun deck, now resting before dinner. Interesting couple last night at dinner and another interesting couple at lunch. We are in Funchal overnight, got our sidecar trip tomorrow morning and depart the port tomorrow evening.

Sunday 4th November – Funchal, Madeira
Good afternoon all from Saga Pearl still in Funchal. When we woke this morning, it was about 17 degrees but very cloudy and dark threatening clouds around, but no humidity. We did our sidecar experience and it was truly amazing - well worth it. I started in the sidecar and H on pillion and we went eastwards on the old roads out of Funchal. We stopped at a viewpoint and then at the Christ the Redeemer statue and then went on to look out over the airport. We swapped over so I was pillion and H in the sidecar and then it was back to Funchal via the freeway. I had managed to stretch or tear a muscle on my chest/ribcage getting out of the sidecar first time until i realised it was easier to put my legs out first and then slide out. So, when I got back i took a painkiller and we went up on sun deck. i started feeling sick, so we went down to the cabin and I rested for an hour or so. Then lunch in MDR - a good crowd on our table for 6. Then to the library and I slept. We are due to sail in an hour or so and head towards La Palma

Monday 5th November – Santa Cruz, La Palma
Belated greetings from Saga Pearl in La Palma. We arrived at 0800 and we had a quiet morning but had to get early lunch as our tour was due out at 1300. The afternoon tours all ended being late leaving due to issues with the gangway being too steep. We were booked on the mystery tour which took us to the Caldera Visitor Centre, then the tourist office in El Paso for taste of local wine, mojo sauces, goats cheese and dried banana. Then to Piazza Gloriana (square of mosaics), past the lava stream from 1949 eruption and then the archaeology museum in the town of Los Llanos de Aridane. Some spare time there then back to ship - we didn’t get back until 1830. Late dinner, then watched a local folk group on board. Ship is here till midnight as a group have gone stargazing. Then we are off to La Gomera where we have a scenic tour booked for the morning. My arm/chest muscle has been better today, but I have taken a painkiller to help me sleep as it was getting uncomfortable. Weather today has been very cloudy but temps of 21 - 23. Anyway, good night until tomorrow.

Tuesday 6th November – San Sebastian, La Gomera (Formal)
Good afternoon from Saga Pearl in L:a Gomera. We arrived at 0800, and another amazing sunrise. Mt Teide (Tenerife) clearly visible above a bank of cloud. Our tour (Scenic Gomera) left at 0930 and lasted for 5 hours. Very good but tiring. We were provided with a packed lunch from the ship. We depart at 1700 this evening, got another formal night and tomorrow is Fuerteventura (last port of call in Canaries). Just been advised by the captain that due to adverse weather ahead, call at Leixoes is cancelled. We are going to Lisbon instead for an overnight stay at least.

Wednesday 7th November – Puerto del Rosario, Fuerteventura
Good afternoon from Saga Pearl in Fuerteventura on a very cloudy but warm and humid day. We arrived at 0800. We took ourselves lit for a stroll around the town for a couple of hours. Now just waiting for lunch. We depart at 1700 and then have two sea days before Lisbon.

Thursday 8th November – AT SEA
Good morning from Saga Pearl in the Atlantic off the coast of Morocco. Well, things have remained relatively calm, just a gentle rocking (described as a lazy swell at the 0900 update) and its still warm out there, if you can find a spot out of the wind (about 20 degrees). Still making our way northwards towards Lisbon. Done sea stretch this morning, otherwise just reading/relaxing in the library. Just waiting for lunch and hoping to go to the show this evening - a singer called Bruce Morrison. We watched the show in the cabin via TV - all I will say is I have heard better! He had obviously used a very old promo photo too.

Friday 9th November – Lisbon, Portugal
Good morning from Saga Pearl off the Algarve coast where we have clear blue skies and quite lumpy seas (a bit of pitching at present) until we turn northwards again. Arrival in Lisbon is now not until 2000 - when we left Fuerteventura it was scheduled as a lunchtime arrival. Off to breakfast shortly and then sea stretch and then a seat in the library. Rather inactive as H a bit unsteady on his pins and my chest muscle still playing me up a bit. However, we enjoy watching the sea-nery!

Arrival time in Lisbon now changed again - I think it’s now 1700-ish! Long lazy swells (about 5 metres) and a big leak developed in the library. It was a giggle watching it being attended to, about 4 officers, some crew, a couple of engineers, a pile of towels, a ladder ...... the joke about " how many men to change a lightbulb" came to mind! We have just arrived in Lisbon at 1600; Balmoral passed us at mouth of river Tagus - she was heading out. Crystal Serenity is here too and there is also a sailing ship of some sort behind that. Looking very stormy out there, but getting dark too. Clouds very low as planes taking off from airport are straight into cloud. The gangway is right by our cabin (although its on Deck A (no air bridges for us). We are closest to the city, much to chagrin of the bigger ship I am sure.

Saturday 10th November – Lisbon, Portugal
Good afternoon from Saga Pearl in the Atlantic just outside Lisbon. Weather in port today was very British - in other words, wet, windy and cool. Because of that, we didn’t get off. The tiled squares and pavements are lethal when wet. However, from comments made by other passengers and also the captain in his departure announcement, it was apparent there was big issues with the security in the cruise terminal, exacerbated by Crystal serenity and an Aida ship both loading new passengers. Suffice to say, senior managers from our ship had to go ashore to have words and Saga have lodged an official complaint with the port authorities.

We played carpet bowls (came 2nd – and got confronted by a fellow passenger (discovered afterwards that he and his wife were extremely competitive, and he saw me as a threat). Have now departed and we are back to the rocking seas (about 4 metres). Next stop Portsmouth, on Tuesday - and then back home! We have 4-metre swells at present, but according to reports, things should improve once we are in the bay and again in the English Channel. We got Disembarkation letters tonight. (tag 1 @ 0900) Last formal night tomorrow.

Soon after we passed under the "busy bees" bridge, we passed the Harry S Truman aircraft carrier anchored in the river and surrounded by lots of security patrol boats. Just had the ships technical officer in to see me as I was experiencing issues with Saga website. He couldn’t explain or resolve it, but at least I was able to show him what was happening. Apparently best time to use internet on board is between 0100-0400! (hmm – don’t think so) So now off to dinner.


Sunday 11th November – AT SEA (Formal)
Afternoon all from Saga Pearl now in the Bay of Biscay where sea is a little calmer. Last night in the Atlantic (and this morning), lots of bouncing around. Special armistice day service on board this morning and a special show tonight too. Sat at lunch with two other couples. One lady on special diet and her first cruise. She was not impressed by the lumpy seas and blamed it on Saga. Also, her attitude to staff appalled me, she was so snooty, she almost tripped over her nose and her special meal (beef well done) took a long time to arrive and then she didn’t eat it (it was too well done). She was miffed because we got served first, probably because we treated the staff like fellow humans. Formal night tonight and we have all our laundry back, just in time to pack our cases tomorrow.

Monday 12th November – AT SEA
Good afternoon from Saga Pearl in the English Channel. Last day of this cruise. Overslept this morning - didn’t wake until 0815. So, sea stretch first and then breakfast. Seas were calmer but still a bit lumpy. Quiet morning in the library and then captains fish n chips bar in the dining room. Packing mostly done. Anyway, end of another mostly enjoyable cruise - roll on the next one - just 21 sleeps to go!

Tuesday 13th November - Portsmouth
Good morning from Saga Pearl in Portsmouth, arrived at 0700 and it’s a bright sunny morning out there. We have had our breakfast and now in the library awaiting disembarkation. Got home safely just after 1130 - had a cup of tea, got the bread out of the freezer to defrost and then got on with the unpacking - and then wade through a large pile of mail, including one from HMRC (I really hate those ones). Our driver brought us back on lovely little country roads and with the trees aglow in their autumnal colours in the sunshine, it was truly beautiful. Now, it’s dark, the curtains are drawn and its back to reality - no lovely chefs and waiters tonight - muggins here is the one who must cook, serve and wash up the dishes! I did try to "borrow" a cabin steward, chef and waiter, but without success. Oh well, a quiet night with no rocking (although my world is still rocking a bit) and then two very busy days ahead, including welcoming our four-legged beastie back home!

End of another wonderful cruise - and home for just a month before we are off again!
Future Cruises - Baltics, Canaries Canada, Med, Scandinavia, UK
khkate
Rear Admiral
Rear Admiral
 
Posts: 3400
Joined: 03 May 2013 19:30
Location: UK

Re: Saga Pearl - Flavours of Canaries - Oct 18

Postby Camela » 26 Nov 2018 17:38

Great post Kate. A good flavour of what you experienced. We did the Canaries and Madeira during November a few years ago so you've reminded me of trips we did. We had fabulous weather in Funchal.
"Won't you let me take you on a sea cruise"
User avatar
Camela
Captain
Captain
 
Posts: 1252
Joined: 09 Feb 2013 18:21
National Flag:
England

Saga Pearl - Flavours of Canaries - Oct 18

Postby Mungo » 26 Nov 2018 20:42

Thanks for sharing! :thumbup:
Image
User avatar
Mungo
Vice Admiral
Vice Admiral
 
Posts: 6945
Joined: 28 Feb 2011 17:41

Saga Pearl - Flavours of Canaries - Oct 18

Postby judgegeoff » 27 Nov 2018 08:27

Many, many thanks for a most interesting and informative cruise review, reading it I felt like I was on the ship with you. :clap: :clap: :clap:

I think that in future you should give up motor cycling and stick to sky diving and rock climbing!!!!! :D :D :D
Geoff

Cruises Booked

Nothing yet but looking.
User avatar
judgegeoff
Powder Monkey
Powder Monkey
 
Posts: 3946
Joined: 23 Mar 2013 12:58
Location: New Romney. Kent
National Flag:
United Kingdom

Saga Pearl - Flavours of Canaries - Oct 18

Postby Gillzajoker » 27 Nov 2018 14:05

Very interesting and informative - enjoyed it all! :D
Image
User avatar
Gillzajoker
Admiral
Admiral
 
Posts: 13464
Joined: 03 Mar 2011 16:07
Location: Costa Almeria, Spain
National Flag:
Spain

Re: Saga Pearl - Flavours of Canaries - Oct 18

Postby Toongirl » 29 Nov 2018 00:44

Thank you Kate, I enjoyed reading this.
User avatar
Toongirl
Commodore
Commodore
 
Posts: 1783
Joined: 16 Mar 2011 21:48
National Flag:
United Kingdom

Saga Pearl - Flavours of Canaries - Oct 18

Postby Jimmy the One » 30 Nov 2018 18:52

Good read Kate brought back memories of the places we've visited.We need another cruise !!!!!!!!!! :thumbup:
Im just a soul whose intentions are good Oh lord please dont let me be misunderstood

Image
Jimmy the One
Rear Admiral
Rear Admiral
 
Posts: 3910
Joined: 03 May 2011 18:07
National Flag:
Scotland

Saga Pearl - Flavours of Canaries - Oct 18

Postby grannyM » 02 Dec 2018 10:24

Thoroughly enjoyed reading that this morning Lesley. Thank you for sharing it. :thumbup: :D
Marie
Image
User avatar
grannyM
Admiral
Admiral
 
Posts: 17225
Joined: 28 Feb 2011 11:22
Location: Ayrshire
National Flag:
Scotland

Re: Saga Pearl - Flavours of Canaries - Oct 18

Postby hazel20 » 02 Dec 2018 18:14

Lovely read x
http://www.hazeljgriffiths.net

Future Lecture Cruises:
Saga Pearl II - November - Moorish Mediterranean
Balmoral - Jan to March - California and Mexico
Saga Sapphire - May- Canada
Spirit of Discovery - July - Maiden Voyage & second cruise
Saga Sapphire - Christmas
User avatar
hazel20
Commodore
Commodore
 
Posts: 1950
Joined: 15 Aug 2011 09:14
National Flag:
Wales


  • Similar Topics
    Replies
    Views
    Last post

Return to Saga



Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 5 guests

cron