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Why choose Fred Olsen Balmoral?

The Balmoral is the largest of the cruise line's four comfortable and welcoming ships, but the only one that carries more than 1,000 passengers. Nonetheless, it is a handsome and well-built ship that is spacious with a good selection of public rooms.

Destinations and Itineraries

The Balmoral has a varied itinerary for the remainder of this year, staying in European waters and cruises on the Baltic Sea or the Mediterranean. Typically cruises last between six and 15 days and both depart from and return to the UK. No matter where you want to go and for however long, there is probably a voyage on the Balmoral that suits, which is why this cruise line has built up a solid reputation for thoughtful itineraries making it a good choice for adventurers.

Shorter cruises include Gaelic and Garlic - a six day cruise with five nights on board, setting out from Southampton. The first port of call is the Breton citadel St Malo, and then the ship sails to Cobh in Ireland for two nights, followed by a day at sea and a return to Southampton.

Other itineraries include tours of the Norwegian fjords, the British Isles, the capitals of the Baltic and the Christmas markets of Northern Europe. There is one lengthy cruise scheduled on the Balmoral in 2013, a 32 night voyage setting off from Southampton, before heading to Madeira and then across the Atlantic to a tour of the Caribbean's most celebrated celebrity hideaways. Holidaymakers who want to visit Barbados, Grenada, the Grenadines, St Lucia, the Dominican Republic, the Turks and Caicos Islands, the British Virgin Islands, the Leeward Islands and the Azores can do so in a single voyage, where prices start from as little as £1,999.

In the New Year the Balmoral stretches its sea legs and embarks on a series of longer voyages with more far-flung destinations in its sights. A January world cruise last for 105 days, but passengers without the spare time or cash can catch the cruise at different stages, whether between the UK and San Diego in the US, or staying on board for 50 days and getting off at Hong Kong. Alternative embarkations and departures are available.

Fred Olsen has cornered the market to meet the demand for a traditional cruise with a British theme. The flagship MS Balmoral is perfectly equipped to provide a comfortable cruise on a friendly ship that takes all the comforts of home to every corner of the Earth.

On Board

There is one pool out on deck at the stern of the ship and also two jacuzzis. As with all traditional cruise ships there is a beautiful teak wraparound deck, with a good amount of sunbathing space. If lying in the sun isn't your thing, there is also a sauna, fitness centre and a spa on board to pamper or punish your body as you see fit. There are no facilities for children.


Although the MS Balmoral started life as the Norwegian Crown, it underwent a major refit in 2008 to bring the ship up to the high standards of the rest of the Fred Olsen line and it now offers an elegant and comfortable cruising experience. There are 738 cabins on board, 121 of which have a balcony and 504 have an ocean view. On the inside there are 113 cabins and unusually, there are also 63 single cabins. All are reasonably sized, have soundproofing and offer good storage space. The larger cabins have a bathtub in the bathroom and Penthouse suites have separate living and sleeping areas.


There is one main dining room on board the MS Balmoral, the Ballindalloch. Food served here is of a high standard and the waiting staff is very attentive. Alternative dining options include the intimate Avon restaurant, the Spey restaurant or the Palms Cafe, the buffet dining option. Dress code is casual and comfortable during the day. In the evenings dress code can vary from smart casual to semi-formal. For many a formal night is an essential part of the cruising experience on these evenings the code is black tie or dark suit for men and a cocktail dress for ladies.


Premier, Marquee and Superior Suites all have a bedroom

✔ Sitting area
✔ Balcony
✔ Bathroom with bath and/or shower
✔ Fridge/mini bar
✔ Suites range from 200 to 430 square feet 

Balcony Junior Suites have a sitting area and balcony
✔ Bath and/or shower
✔ Fridge/mini bar

Single Balcony Suites have a bedroom with a balcony
✔ Bathroom with a bath and/or shower
✔ Fridge and minibar

All suites on board Balmoral have interactive television.

Balcony Cabins

✔ Balcony Cabins are 180 square feet, and 190 square feet for a Superior
✔ Balcony
✔ Bathroom with shower, or bath and shower
✔ Interactive television. 

Please note: the above cabin picture is an example BA Superior Balcony cabin, balcony cabins can vary between grade and cabin

Outside cabins

✔ Outside Cabins range from approx 165 square feet to approx 200 square feet for a Superior Outside Cabin.
✔ Bathroom with a shower and/or bath.
✔ Interactive television.

Please note: the above pictured cabin is an example outside cabin D category - cabins vary between grade and cabin

Inside Cabins

✔ Twin Inside cabins are all approx 160 square feet
✔ Bathroom with a shower and/or bath
✔ Interactive television.

Please note: the above pictured cabin is an example inside cabin H category - cabins vary between grade and cabin

Single Cabins

✔ Single cabins range from 130 square feet for a Single Inside Cabin, to 160 square feet for a Superior Outside Single Cabin. 
✔ Interactive television.

 Please note: the above pictured cabin is an example single cabin K category - cabins vary between grade and cabin


Passengers1350 Standard Occupancy
Fully StabilisedYes
Tonnage43,537 grt
Length218.18 m
Beam (width)28.2 m
Speed 18.5 knots

Why choose Thomas Cook

With hotels available to suit every person and every budget look no further than Thomas Cook for your getaway this year!

  • Thousands of hotels to choose from
  • Dedicated online customer service
  • Over 170 years of travel experience
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  • Thousands of destinations worldwide

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