After our recent trip with Celebrity Cruises to the Scandinavian and Baltic region we can reflect on the experience; looking at photos of the places we visited and contemplating the positive (and sometimes negative) aspects of these destinations. This particular itinerary on the Celebrity Eclipse visited Zeebrugge, Copenhagen, Stockholm, Tallinn, St. Petersburg and Warnemunde over 14 days. Pictures do ‘speak a thousand words’, offering a unique account of a trip and these will hopefully help readers decide if this adventure is one for them.
Zeebrugge is an access port to the historic town of Bruge, as well as further afield to Ypres and Flanders Field. The shuttle bus takes you to Blankenberge – one of Belgium’s most lovely seaside resorts.
Copenhagen is the gateway to the Baltic, rich in Scandinavian culture and modern design. Tivoli Gardens, a traditional amusement park, inspired Walt Disney and Hans Christian Andersen.
Stockholm is a vibrant city surrounded by pristine forests and a stunningly beautiful archipelago. The historic Gamla Stan, with its cobbled streets and Royal Palace, contrasts with the modern centre where visitors find leading museums and the famous Ice Bar.
Tallinn is a Medieval gem, with a well-preserved quaint centre only a short walk from the cruise terminal. Beyond the old town are abandoned and neglected post-Soviet buildings giving a stark reminder of the recent history of this fascinating place.
St. Petersburg is the pinnacle of the voyage with its onion-domed churches in eye-popping technicolour, world-leading art collection and glittering palaces. A visa is required to leave the ship, which comes as part of any shore excursion. With the high crime rate in the city a group tour may be a safer option. There is poverty here as well as riches, and the information you are given on trips seems carefully curated to the point of being restricted in terms of some Russian history and current affairs.
Warnemunde is a pleasant seaside town but has limited interest. The port is more beneficial as a starting point for Berlin excursions, which can be lengthy and expensive, or trips to the nearby town of Rostock.
And so after 14 wonderful days …