Danielle left the UK in early October on a 168-night cruise aboard Fred Olsen’s much-loved Boudicca. Her ‘Grand Voyage’ will take her to amazing destinations including South Africa, India, Singapore, Australia, the Maldives, Indonesia and the Seychelles – and she’ll be reporting back to World of Cruising via her exclusive monthly diary…
For many travellers, a round-the-world cruise has to be the ultimate bucket-list trip, so I know how lucky I am to be spending the whole winter aboard Boudicca.
As a cruise blogger I’m often away at sea, so it wasn’t too difficult to say goodbye to my family and friends – they’re used to not seeing me – but I am a bit apprehensive about Christmas. This will be the first time in 35 years that I haven’t been at home for the festive season, and I know I’ll miss everyone dearly.
That said, I’m also looking forward to my first Christmas in the sunshine, and I speak to my mum every day on WhatsApp, so I’ll be getting lots of photos of the people I’m closest to (and my cat!) as I sail around the world.
My home-from-home is an outside cabin on Deck 3 of Boudicca, and as I’m travelling alone I can use all the available space –including the ceiling, thanks to the magnetic hooks I brought with me for hanging bags and jackets on. I’ve got two portholes for natural light, a queen-sized bed, a bathroom with a tub, and ample wardrobe space – perfect for storing shopping!
The atmosphere on board is really friendly and there’s always lots to do. So far we’ve had ukulele lessons, daily quizzes, dancing classes, craft classes, bridge lessons, silent discos, port presentations and loads more. I’ve also been reunited with some of the friends I made last year, when I was lucky enough to sail on Fred Olsen’s Black Watch.
So far we’ve made port calls at La Coruña, Madeira, Tenerife and Las Palmas. Having new guests join the ship was quite exciting, as many of us had been communicating in an online group, though it was sad when I had to say goodbye to many of the lovely people I’d met in the first week.
Of course, that’s the nature of round-the-world cruises, and you soon get used to it. There are about 100 of us staying on board for the whole trip, and so far I’ve managed to meet 13 of them so we can compare notes as we travel.
As everyone knows, food is a large aspect of any cruise, and I’m trying (but failing) not to over-indulge and be healthy. Our first formal evening was the day after we set sail from Dover, and that meant a delicious gala dinner. Châteaubriand was on the menu, along with a melt-in-the-middle chocolate pudding, and I couldn’t resist either.
My plan is just to have salad at lunch, eating it alfresco at the Poolside Grill, then I can be more indulgent in the evening. But I’ll be on board till March so I want to make sure I can still fit into my clothes by then!
Our next port of call will be the Cape Verde islands, followed by Namibia and South Africa, before heading on to explore the tropical islands of the Indian Ocean, including the Maldives and the Seychelles.
They’re all amazing destinations, but if I had to pick just one thing that I can’t wait to experience, it would probably be the New Year’s Eve celebrations in Sydney.
This article will be updated monthly.