We were again up and breakfast when the ship docked. This time in Honningsvag. Apart from crossing the pole on an aeroplane, this is the furthest north we have been, and are ever likely to be. Honningsvag itself is the furthest north village in Europe and the gateway to North Cape or Nord Kapp as it is known here. Technically I understand it is not quite the most northerly part of mainland Europe, as a nearby point is slightly further north. It is, however the most accessible and is where the Atlantic and the Arctic Oceans are generally accepted as meeting.
This is the first morning we wakened to completely overcast skies since St Petersburg and the first rain we have had since Peterhof. It was dry when we got up, but wet by the time we were outside. We also had a cold wind which made things appear cooler than the temperature indicated.
After breakfast we assembled for our tour and were soon on our way on a bus being driven round the island of Mageroya and visiting two small villages. The first had an art gallery and was quite scenic, despite the wind, rain and cloudy conditions. The second had a Christmas store and we had a piece of cake and a drink of glog - a very spicy, warm non-alcoholic drink. There was a herd of reindeer nearby and a few of us walked out to see them more closely. Reindeer belong to the Sami people, the indigenous northern Europeans related to the Inuit and previously known as Laplanders. The Sami are nomadic and follow the reindeer around, using every piece of the animal. Norway, Sweden and Finland have given them a degree of Autonomy and they have their own parliament. Russia has not extended the same freedom to the Sami who live within their borders.
We returned to the dock and browsed the souvenir store where we purchased a book and some postcards before taking the short walk into town and went up and down the main street of Honningsvag, making a small purchase at a grocery store and returning to the ship where we were forced to stand in the rain and cold while they adjusted the gangway. To some extent this is understandable, but what was not acceptable was their allowing people who were in the warmth of the ship to disembark before letting those of us standing in the cold to board..
We went up and had lunch, then came back to the cabin and read and napped. We watched teh ship leave and as we got ready for dinner we passed the North Cape and left teh Arctic Ocean and Joined the Norwegian Sea - part of the Atlantic Ocean. The sea was a little choppy as we ate dinner, but calmed down and was very calm again, as it has been almost all of this cruise.
We had our customary walk round the ship befor eretiring for the night.