Ashore in Stockholm - 07/05/19
05 July 2019 | Baltic Sea
Woke up early, before 6 am. Our ship came into the channel and tied to a buoy in the middle of the channel on both the front and rear. They started launching the tender boats to get everyone to and from shore. We went back to sleep for another couple of hours.
Got dressed and headed to Deck 14, Lido, for breakfast. Then came back to our cabin and got ready to head to shore. It was 9:30 when we walked down to Deck 5 to get a ticket to get on the tender. We waited quite a while and they loaded people with numbers less than ours. So, we waited once again. That was not the best part of our Sea Princess cruise.
We were packed with a hundred other passengers and thankfully, it was a short ride to shore. Walked around the narrow cobble stone streets. Many of the shops were open as it was already after 10. Stopped by a few souvenir shops. The currency was divided by 10 to get US prices. I selected a silver ring with opals, that they said came from Australia. Then we headed to the town square and paid around $15 each to enter the Stockholm Royal Palace. Took lots of pictures as we pretty much toured the whole place. They only restricted pictures in the Treasury exhibit. On display were several of the royal crowns and swords from over the years. Just beautiful! We checked out the Protestant Church, which was beautifully decorated with a stunning pipe organ on the next level up.
One area that was very interesting, included horses and carriages, and sleds used during the winter season. We came out in time to see the noon hour changing of the guards. It was quite the production. Around the other side there was a band playing and we could hear it. Got to see one of the guards being replaced. This guard actually answered Mark's questions about their ceremony, which was nice.
It was raining lightly by the time we decided to head back to the ship. Walked along the water's edge. There were several restaurants and pubs. We positioned ourselves under the Sea Princess awning, to get out of the cold and wet, while waiting for the tender to pick us up. However, the dock was being used for other ferries and the public needed a place to get thru. They asked us to move out and I refused, as did several other passengers. Thankfully, there were no others needing to enter the dock area. So, we waited and eventually our tender boat picked us up. Thankfully, I had worn two sweaters and a jacket, so really, I was warm enough. Mark had a t-shirt, shirt and jacket on and he was okay too with the 50 degree temperature in town.
We had a late lunch on Deck 14, Lido, when we got back aboard. We joined a few of our Ryder Cup friends in a Ring Toss challenge. Mark did much better than me. Then we headed to our cabin for a rest. I fell into one very deep sleep. Good thing we had set the alarm. Our ship was just about ready to depart. They dropped both sets of lines from fore and aft and ran the bow thrusters to turn us around in the middle of the channel. We have been motored slowly thru the mega number of islands on the channel, as we head out of Sweden and out into the Baltic Sea. Most of the islands have rocky coast lines and evergreen trees. Many are really small. Others are larger with houses. Lots of boats around. Many sailboats under sail passed by our ship.
We had dinner at 5:30 with our dinner mates. Enjoyed our conversations about what everyone did today. We all made it to shore, which was good. I found it not as cold as the day progressed and the sun came out briefly. Lots of clouds in the sky preventing the sun was shining on us. We stopped and took pictures on Deck 7. Then walked up to the casino. It was closed since we are still in Swedish waters.
The sun is still shining as it won't set for another couple of hours or so. Still lots of clouds in the sky, but there is a hint of color on the horizon. We didn't bother going to tonight's show. It was a lady Disney and Broadway singer. The Movie Under the Stars was Bohemian Rhapsody, which we have seen several times. Mark did walk up and pick up a couple of bags of popcorn. Will start up a movie shortly to fill the rest of our day. I am feeling cold in our cabin, so it may be time to turn the heat up a little. Thanks for your emails and messages. I posted some pictures from Stockholm. Also, caught up on some Facebook posts. We have a day at sea tomorrow. Then our next port will be Copenhagen, Denmark. We need to do some research and see what we will tour there. Enjoy your day!