Set sail from Belfast with Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines’ ‘Boudicca’ this Summer!

Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines' Boudicca. In this image sailing around the Isle of Mull, Scotland (Courtesy Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines)Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines is ‘bringing the world closer’ to the people of Northern Ireland and Ireland in Summer 2016, with two exciting itineraries from Belfast aboard 880-guest ship, Boudicca.

Guests can choose from a nine-night D1613 ‘Classic Norwegian Fjords’ cruise, departing on 23rd July 2016, or a 12-night D1614A ‘German Canals, Rivers & Cities’ cruise, setting sail on 1st August 2016.

Nathan Philpot, Sales and Marketing Director for Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines, said:

“We are pleased to be offering our guests in Northern Ireland and Ireland the opportunity to embark on a Fred. Olsen cruise from Belfast, without having to endure an expensive flight or long ferry crossing to reach the ship.

“The popularity of our Belfast sailings has grown and grown, and this will be our fourth cruise season from the port. It is rewarding to see that cruising with Fred. Olsen is now well-established as the ‘holiday of choice’ in the minds of so many local people.”

Cruise Belfast has announced that 2016 will be the busiest cruise season in the city’s history, with the port playing host to 81 cruise calls, with over 145,000 guests and crew due to visit, representing a 26% increase in visitor numbers compared with 2015.

Fred. Olsen will be increasing the number of cruise calls into Belfast in its 2016/17 season, from seven in 2015 to a total of 11 visits this year.

Joe O’Neill, Commercial Director of Belfast Harbour, said:

“We are delighted to once again have the opportunity to work with Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines and offer the public the opportunity to begin a cruise from their local port.”

Fred. Olsen’s connections with the seafaring city of Belfast run deep; the Fred. Olsen group of companies includes Fred. Olsen Energy, which comprises Offshore Drilling and Engineering & Fabrication, owner of the Harland & Wolff Shipyard, where the ill-fated R.M.S. Titanic was built.

Details of Fred. Olsen’s two ex-Belfast sailings in Summer 2016, aboard smaller, more intimate Boudicca, are as follows:

• Nine-night D1613 ‘Classic Norwegian Fjords’ cruise, ex Belfast on 23rd July 2016. Prices start from £1,199 per person.

As the Norway cruise specialist, there is no better was to see the spectacular fjords than with Fred. Olsen!

Boudicca will arrive first in Bergen, where guests can take a trip on the funicular railway to Mount Fløyen, for panoramic views over Norway’s ‘Gateway to the Fjords’.

Next comes Skjolden, which is Norway’s innermost cruise port, sitting at the end of the country’s longest fjord. Lustrafjord. Here, guests can visit the Urnes Stave Church – the oldest of its type – or take in the breath-taking Nigardsbreen Glacier, an arm of the mighty Jostedalsbreen Glacier.

Boudicca will then cruise along the imposing Nærøyfjord, which has been rated top of National Geographic’s list of natural heritage sites worldwide. At 17 kilometres long and just 250 metres wide at its narrowest point – meaning that it is only accessible to smaller ships – this passage through the fjord is one of the most dramatic in Europe.

Guests will then arrive in the charming village of Olden,located at the far end of peaceful Nordfjord, where Boudicca undertakes a scenic cruise and sails past the majestic Hornelen, Europe’s highest sea cliff. The cruise also takes in Strandafjellet Mountain, voted as one of the ‘Top 10’ fjord experiences by Norwegians.

The tiny town of Hellesylt is the next port of call, surrounded by incredible scenery, including the striking Hellesylt Waterfall. Guests will then experience a scenic cruise of the mighty Geirangerfjord, past Seven Sisters Waterfall – the perfect photo opportunity!

An afternoon in the beautiful town of Geiranger follows. Take to the adventurous Eagle’s Road, with its dramatic corners, hairpin bends and impossibly-steep gradient, or enjoy awe-inspiring scenery from the Flydalsjuvet viewpoint, which affords spectacular photo opportunities. Boudicca then returns to Belfast.

• 12-night D1614A ‘German Rivers’ cruise, ex Belfast on 1st August 2016. Prices start from £1,299 per person.

After a cruise through the Kiel Canal, the first port on this German waterways sailing is Travemünde, for trips into UNESCO-listed Lübeck. This enchanting town will make guests feel as though they have been transported back to the 14th Century!

Boudicca will then arrive in Hamburg, for two nights. Here, guests can choose to take in the culture of this fantastic Hanseatic city, with over 60 museums, or the world-famous Reeperbahn, with its theatres, bars and lively nightlife.

Guests will then have the chance to relax out on Boudicca’sdeck, as shecruises along the River Elbe and the River Weser, before arriving in Bremen, for an overnight stay. Famous for its beer, breweries and traditional pubs, guests can soak up the local culture, or take a look around St. Peter’s Cathedral.

Boudicca will then make a stop in Dublin, renowned for its warm welcome, history and culture. Guests can wander through the streets of this vibrant city, taking in the many museums and monuments, or take a tour to the Guinness Storehouse, for a taste of the famous ‘Black Stuff’. Boudicca then returns to Belfast.

All prices are based on two adults sharing a twin-bedded, Inside cabin, and include accommodation, all meals and entertainment on board, and port taxes. Guests can also choose to upgrade to Fred. Olsen’s ‘all-inclusive’ drinks package for just £10 per person, per night.

As an added bonus, guests who book by 2nd March 2016 can take advantage of two tempting benefits on these Belfast sailings: ‘Three Cruises for the Price of Two’ or ‘Free Tips & Tipples’, where Fred. Olsen covers guests’ tips and gives them the ‘all-inclusive’ drinks upgrade FREE.

Fred. Olsen is also offering new guests its industry-leading ‘Enjoyment Promise’. Launched in December 2013, this unique guarantee gives new guests the reassurance that, should they find that a cruise is not for them, Fred. Olsen will arrange and pay for their flight back to the UK, plus refund the cost of their cruise.

(Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines)