To the Black Sea - October 8th - November 7th 2016

Back to All Cruises Index Page

Back to the Tourism Index Page

Back to Ken & Avis' general Index Page

Black Sea by Fred Olsen

Off for a cruise on this lovely Fred Olsen ship.

The MV Boudicca, photoed at Valletta & stuck betwen two big, ugly "troop ships".

There are hourly trains from London Euston to Liverpool Lime Street (Virgin Pendolinos). These only take just over two hours.

The trip took us from Liverpool to

Valletta      (Mdina)
Istanbul     Istanbul Day 2
Dikili         (Pergamon)
Kusadasi    (Ephesus)

& back to Liverpool

Leaving Liverpool on quite a nice day

Saturday 8th October - Boarding

I had ordered a taxi for 9, as they had been late the last few times but he was early & got up to Euston quickly, so we had tea & coffee while we waited. The train gave us plenty of time to walk the quarter-mile to the front, where our coach was. The weather improved as we went North. It was 2 minutes late! Taxi to the Cruise Terminal, the 1st bit of luck is that Anthony Borradaile is the Cruise Director, so I wrote him a note. The second is that Joyce is on the violin & we greeted enthusiastically with kisses & cuddles. We chatted to some people over tea but our luggage was late arriving, although we had been early in the terminal & were let on the ship first with our Gold membership at 13:40. The group at dinner comprised Valerie & Bernard, who seemed all right & David & Pam, who is a complainer. I met Steve the Dance Host on his first ever cruise & who retired yesterday from maintaining racing cars. The show was just an introduction of all the entertainers with some songs & a dance routine.

Sunday 9th October - Day at Sea

Usual ship’s breakfast, although I managed to constrain myself, after which I did some turns around the deck with chats, the second with a mum & daughter Lois who works at the Met Office in Exeter. We saw a very big school of dolphins, who dived under the ship. The port lecturer was very good & pointed out every free bog in Gibraltar. I did a lot of walking round & chatting. It was a formal evening, with the usual dressing up. The singer, Holly Hollyoak, is ok but needs to attend to her top notes.

Monday 10th October - Still at sea

The port talk on Valletta was earlier & I skipped the policeman’s talk on child abduction, although Avis went. Then, we walked round the deck. I introduced her to Lois the Weather, who has the biggest computer in the country. The classical pianist, Maiko Mori, was very good, playing demanding stuff & finishing with La Campanella. I started trimming the Sullivan talk to cruise dimensions. Lamb shank for dinner. Not the usual minimalist portion! The magician/funny man Dain Cordean, was ok but did not do many tricks & most of his jokes were ok.

Maiko Mori

Tuesday 11th October - Still at sea

The hour went on last night, the first of many. A port talk on Varna, where there does not seem to be that much to see. The diplomat Keith gave a talk about his involvement in the Angolan Civil War, where, at the behest of the Foreign Office, he was on the wrong side but he was full of admiration for the Cubans helping the MPLA. After lunch, Avis went to a talk about the Concorde crash & how we were fed a pack of lies about the cause (the French had left off a wheel spacer) while I cut down the Sullivan talk but not by enough, so I did more later but we did go to the policeman’s talk about runaway child murder by perverts. I was somewhat incensed that he had got a job with this unsuitable subject while I got nothing from Rushton. It is all very well scheduling such talks for the WI & U3A, where you can come or not, as you choose but on a cruise ship, some people go to the talks out of boredom. Duck for dinner & the Show Team did the usual Oceans show. They are a newly assembled bunch & a little rough. One male singer tends to search for the note but they were not bad. I told Anthony after (not having been able to find George, yes, George again) that the balance favoured the orchestra & needs fixing.

Port 1 - Gibraltar

Port 2 - Valletta

Port 3 - Varna

Port 4 - Constanta

Port 5 - Odessa

Port 6 - Sochi

Port 7 - Istanbul

Port 8 - Dikili

Port 9 - Kusadasi

Port 10 - Athens

Port 11 - Catania

Port 12 - Almeria

Port 13 - Leixoes

Next Page - Gibraltar

Back to All Cruises Index Page

Back to the Tourism Index Page

Back to Ken & Avis' general Index Page

Contact: Ken Baldry at 17 Gerrard Road, Islington, London N1 8AY +44(0)20 7359 6294 or e-mail him
URL: Last revised 10/11/2016 ©2016 Ken Baldry. All rights reserved.