What a day! To start with, it was of course our FIRST day on board. And it couldn’t be better to get used to the sea: the water was calm as a lake and the sun was shining from a perfectly blue sky.
After midday we reached our first port of call: Stralsund. It was the FIRST time ever MS FRAM visited this former Hanseatic town. On the other hand, it was also the FIRST time that the city received a cruise ship of this size! No surprise that there was big excitement on both sides. We were welcomed by gunshots from historical canons and live brass instruments music. Our Captain and some of the officers were the first to leave the ship to be greeted and later escorted by the mayor to the city hall where the Captain had the honour to put his signature in the golden book.
In the meantime, to celebrate our arrival, we were generously treated with sparkling wine at the pier. Afterwards, a boat shuttle transferred us to the main pier. From here we could explore the ancient city centre – either by excursion or on our own. Due to a wealth of well-restored buildings, Stralsund earned the title of UNESCO world cultural heritage (in conjunction with Wismar). Of more than 800 listed buildings in Stralsund, more than 500 are designated as individual monuments in the Old Town.
In addition, the original Gorch Fock lays in the harbour, now hosting a museum. For those interested in biology, there is also a huge new museum for marine life, the “Ozeaneum”, which is also very worth visiting.