Setting sail from Southampton
Southampton is the UK's leading port. Bustling modern cruise terminals, as well as wharfs and commercial harbours, line the waterfront, whilst the city itself is a fascinating mix of ancient and modern, with a picturesque old town, the original city walls still standing, and super-modern shopping centres and office complexes. On all corners you will see tributes to the city's rich history and maritime heritage. Henry V marched his troops through the Westgate on his way to the battle of Agincourt, The Mayflower sailed from here with a cargo of settlers to the New World, and the Titanic started her fateful voyage here.
Just a short drive from Southampton is the magical New Forest with its quaint hamlets, historic towns and seaside villages. Look out for the ponies too.
Olden is a lovely little village surrounded by green meadows and rippling mountain scenery, at the mouth of the Oldeelva river. The most popular excursion is a trip to the nearby Briksdalsbreen, an arm of the vast Jostedalsbreen glacier.
Svolvær is the largest town in the Lofoten Islands, though with just over 4,000 inhabitants it’s hardly a bustling metropolis. From the picturesque harbour you can strike out into the stunning Lofoten countryside, where dramatic mountains tower above rustic little fishing villages.
Surrounded by dramatic fjords and mountains, the port of Narvik played a key role during World War II as an ice-free outlet to the sea for iron exports from the Swedish mining town of Kiruna. The train ride across the border on the Ofoten Line makes for an interesting day trip, with spectacular mountain scenery en route.
The port of Honningsvåg is the gateway to Europe’s most northerly point, the North Cape, and enjoys 24-hour daylight in summer. Aside from tourism, fishing is the major industry in this part of Norway, and the region is also said to be inhabited by trolls.
Svalbard and Jan Mayen: Longyearbyen
Longyearbyen is the largest settlement in Svalbard, remotely located in the high Norwegian Arctic, and originally built as a mining town. The locals continue to make the best of this hostile environment, and brightly painted wooden buildings line the main street. The surrounding area is breathtakingly beautiful.
Svalbard and Jan Mayen: Ny Ålesund
Ny Ålesund is one of the northernmost permanently inhabited settlements in the world, on the remote and inhospitable northwest coast of Spitsbergen. Once an important coal mining centre, this tiny town is now mostly home to scientists and researchers studying the Arctic.
Tromsø’s location well within the Arctic Circle means the summer months are lit by the Midnight Sun, a compensation for long dark winters. Explore the streets with their multi-coloured wooden houses, see the amazing architecture of the Arctic cathedral, or take the cable car up to Mount Storsteinen for a fantastic view.
Trondheim’s wooden buildings look much as they would have done in the Middle Ages, rebuilt in the same style and layout throughout history. Here also Norway's national sanctuary, Nidaros Cathedral, was built over the grave of St. Olav, Norway's patron saint, with parts dating back to the 12th century.
When Ålesund was destroyed by fire in 1904, the German Kaiser Wilhelm II agreed to foot the bill to rebuild it. The result was the stunning Art Nouveau architecture that you see today, which blends elements of the German 'Jugendstil' with Viking flourishes.
Beautiful Bergen, Norway’s former capital, is a perfect city to explore on foot. Bryggen – the old Hanseatic wharf, and a UNESCO World Heritage site – still has the old harbour timber buildings, whilst other attractions include the funicular up Mount Floyen and the busy fish market.
Arriving in Oslo
The intriguing city of Oslo, Norway's capital, has so much to offer, from the open air Norwegian Folk Museum to the amazing Vigeland sculpture park, and from the Holmenkollen Ski Museum to the Munch Museum's collection of memorable paintings. History, art and culture are what defines this lovely city. Oslo was also named European Green Capital in 2019, with an excellent public transport network, plenty of parks and green space, and a revitalised culinary scene that draws on local, sustainably sourced produce.
Your home from home
The Azamara Journey, Quest & Pursuit are excellent small ships that offer a welcoming and relaxed club-like atmosphere.
What we love
This trio of sister ships are focused on providing destination immersion by spending as much time in port as possible with itineraries designed to include overnight stays and late evening departures. Enjoy more time to discover the local culture and when back on board relax and enjoy a vibrant array of inclusions.
|Crew:||408 International staff|
|Style:||Relaxed club-like atmosphere|
|Year built:||Journey & Quest 2000, Pursuit 2001|
|Last refurbished:||Journey & Quest 2016, Pursuit 2018|
|Cruising speed:||18.5 knots|
Tailor-make your trip
Overnight in Southampton
Stay at the Pig in the Wall, stylish with great food. Very small so book early.
Day trips from Southampton
Visit historic Winchester, home to King Arthur’s Round Table, the Great Hall and Winchester Cathedral.