The Artisan Blog
I caught up with Laura from our Marketing Team to chat about her experience of Madeira. Here is what she had to say:
So, what I imagine when I think of visiting ‘gardens’ is long afternoons spent wandering round protected stately homes, battered flowers and mowed lawns, but you can think again when it comes to the gardens of Madeira; they’re something entirely different!
At the beginning of May, I was lucky enough to experience our small-ship cruise on the Aegean Sea. The cruise itself was unbelievable and it allowed me to travel to some wonderful Greek Islands. Certainly, an experience I’ll remember and cherish for years to come!
Unlike traditional cruises, a small-ship cruise focuses on the destination, not the journey, but one of the highlights of this trip for me was having time pre-and post-cruise to explore the ancient city of Athens. So, I thought I’d share some of my highlights, hints and tips!
As we drifted leisurely past a tiny Greek island and the sun shone down on the water, small diamond-like sparkles seem to bubble on the surface. It was one of those moments when I thought for the millionth time… ‘I absolutely love my job!’
After a dreary and damp UK winter, I was thrilled to learn that my next work trip was going to be sampling our new holiday - Small-ship cruise on the Aegean Sea
At this time of year, the sun does not set in Northern Norway. Whilst slightly disorientating at first, I soon came to really enjoy the never-ending days and the opportunities this opened. In this time of the Midnight Sun, Norwegians sleep less – they fish, they kayak, they BBQ, they island hop – more daylight means more time to enjoy the splendours of the land and socialise until the early hours.
At around 11.30pm the sun dips toward, but never quite reaches, the horizon. The Norwegian fjords and mountains are bathed in a pinkish golden glow and the scenery looks all the more idyllic, exuding a sense of warmth and serenity. As strange as it sounds, one of my favourite things to do was to simply sit on the water’s edge and enjoy the colours of the light.
One of the key highlights of the trip was the chance to spend time on the island of Senja. Having listened to colleagues rave about it for years, it was a place I was eager to see. I can confirm that it does indeed live up to the hype.
It didn’t really occur to me until afterwards, but to see a whale in the wild is truly a magnificent experience.
We were lucky enough to see four sperm whales up close off the coast of Norway (although, as Daniele our guide pointed out to us, your eyes play tricks with you at sea and what feels like 20 metres away is more like 80) and it makes you feel overwhelmingly humbled to witness an animal that has swum in our oceans for more than 5 million years.
The adjective ‘beautiful’ is banned in our office so I have had to delve into my thesaurus to accurately describe what I thought of Norway on my recent stay. Glorious, splendid, gorgeous, lovely and stunning are a good way to start, but perhaps most accurately, my overall thoughts on the parts of Norway we explored were that they were so easy on the eye that it was almost laughable.
Now I'm hardly known as a petrol-head and wasn't interested in motorbikes, but who hasn't been attracted to the thrills and glamour associated with the snowmobile?
Ever since I can remember, since watching Sean and Roger in old Bond movies, I've dreamed of cruising over the crisp white snow, a trail of powder in my wake as I power over frozen Arctic wastes escaping some imagined team of henchmen in hot pursuit. But what if the reality is slightly different? What if I'm not so much Milk Tray man as Mr Bean? Just how sensitive is the throttle and what if I fly off or hit a tree?
Personally, I am not a huge believer in spirituality, for example, I have never experienced people or places having auras or special meanings.
However, when I met Sven Engholm the owner and head Musher at Engholm Husky in Karasjok, I was completely blown away by the sheer presence of this incredible man.
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