Baltic Cruise Arcadia Overview

Jan Leeming

Shoreham 2007

Shoreham Airshow 2007
Me looking brave before taking to the air (and the wing) of the plane. Wow, it was cold !! But the whole experience was totally exhilarating.



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Jan's Blog

Computers and the internet are amazing things. One of my concerns with putting together this site was that it could remain current, yet with all my travelling I've often much to say, but little time to say it. Years ago when reading the news it would take me days on end to reply to the kind letters people sent. Now, with the magic of the modern age, I can keep you up to date with what I'm doing and other events in my life.


Date: 27th September 2009


I don't quite know where to begin.  The Cruise was absolutely superb - every single facet of it.  I accepted the contract because I thought the Baltic trip was a cruise that offered so much in the way of culture and new experiences.  And my son and I weren't disappointed with anything.  St. Petersburg surpassed expectation and all our ports of call were of interest in different ways.  As I've already said I particularly liked Arcadia -  an entirely subjective choice - because of the lack of a central Atrium which on other ships tends to be a congregation point so the ship always appears busy.  On Arcadia and Oriana, you really do wonder where all the people have gone - there's a lovely sense of 'space' and it's hard to credit that the full complement of passengers and crew number nearly 3,000.

The passengers were delightful and we made a few friends on the trip - one couple actually wanted to 'adopt' Jonathan.  And after the ice was broken when I'd given my first talk, we found that the passengers were much more willing to come and chat.  Mind you, until I clarified a mis-conception, many thought Jonathan was my 'toy-boy' and they were probably giving us a respectful space.  This mistake has been made so often now, that we both find it highly amusing.  We do get on remarkably well and our friendship is very obvious.

I've already commented on the high standard of Cuisine and Entertainment.  There is something for everyone virtually every hour of the day.  The tours are very well organised and offer a wide variety of experiences to suit every taste and a lot of trouble is taken to ensure that most of the tours are suitable for disabled passengers.

I have always loved dressing formally and Cruising is absolutely ideal in that there's a full programme of Formal Evenings (requiring DJ) and semi Formal ones. 

There's a superb bulletin called 'Horizon' every day which lists all the activities on offer - one is actually spoiled for choice.  In your cabin there's a full line up of programmes on the Television and in the Screening Room you can catch up on some of the most recent Film releases.  J and I watched a couple of very good films - the latest Dan Brown - Angels and Demons (thank goodness I had Jonathan to give me a basic outline of the plot!!) and a lovely 'Aah' type film directed by and starring Clint Eastwood - Gran Torino (the latter I probably wouldn't have gone to see at the cinema but am very glad I had a chance to view it on the ship).

I could go on and on - with superlatives flying in all directions.  The Baltic is definitely a cruise I would do again though I very much doubt that we would ever get the absolutely 'perfect' weather conditions we encountered. On thinks of the Baltic Countries as being predominantly wet and cold - it was T-shirt weather virtually the whole trip.

I very much enjoyed giving my talks which appeared to be appreciated if the attendance was anything to go by and only wish I'd had a slot to talk about my fascinating and unique experience of visiting a closed (Atomic) town in Siberia - perhaps next time!

So my overall reaction is to 'Carry on Cruising'.  I think I'm becoming addicted especially now that I've kind of sorted out which end of the ship is which.

I will now attend to putting some photos of the Baltic Trip on to the Internet.  That's going to be a job and a half.  Although I've become far more selective in my photography, I did take over 1000 photos which I've cut down to 600 but that's still a lot from which to make a choice for the Gallery.

I very much enjoy writing my Blogs but I sometimes feel as though I'm talking to myself.  Please give me some feedback.  I'm intrigued to see that people log on from places like Mauritius, Taiwan, the Russian Federation, Brazil, China, the U.S  - the numbers aren't massive but they are growing in China and the U.S.  and I'd love to know why they come to my site - is it the Cheetahs perhaps?

Till the next time - but it will be a long time before it is all quite as exciting as the last few weeks.

Take care,  Jan.

Photo of Jonathan and me dining in the Rhodes Restaurant on board the Arcadia


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