Baltic cruise: Jewel of the Seas

I briefly mentioned in the last entry that we cruised on the Jewel of the Seas. Unfortunately, at the time of writing, the Wikipedia page is in dispute for being written like an advertisement. So I think some pictures would give a better impression of the ship.

The Centrum

At the centre of the ship, there is an atrium called the Centrum that extends the full height of eight decks. The first photo shows the view looking at up from the bottom; but perhaps more impressive is the view from the top, standing on the plate-glass floor! Absolutely terrifying.

A view up the centrum
A view down the Centrum

In dock

Here’s the Jewel (right), docked in Tallinn next to the MSC Ocean (left).

MSC Ocean and MS Jewel of the Seas

And another view of the Jewel, this time docked in Oslo.

The Jewel in Oslo

Not a great photo, but I wanted to include this photo of the horns. The largest horn has a diameter of probably six feet or more. All three horns sound simultaneously and interfere to make a deep growly noise which is unlike anything I’ve heard before.

The horns of the Jewel


In St Petersburg, we took on more fuel. It took about an hour to set up the tanker, 3-4 hours to pump the fuel, and another hour to pack up. The oil tanker was pretty big, but dwarfed by the Jewel.

The oil tanker alongside the Jewel

The crew extract some oil from the tanks using a small pot on a piece of string, and test it before it is pumped. I couldn’t tell what these tests might be, but it didn’t take long and the foreman jotted down some notes on a clipboard.

From what I could tell, the belly of the tanker contained twelve compartments, each with its own pump and hatch for testing. The crew sampled oil from all twelve hatches, and when pumping began I heard twelve pumps start working, one after another.

The crew test the oil

Some fat guy checks the counter to see how many litres have been pumped. Also visible is the black hose where the oil is pumped to the Jewel. A sign on the tanker said this hose had been tested to 10 Bar.

The fuel gauge

The oil tanker has what appears to be a jet-propelled lifeboat. It looks like it can go temporarily underwater, which makes sense when you look at the angle of its launch. I’m guessing it has to be pretty fast so the crew can bail if the tanker is in danger of catching fire.

The tanker’s lifeboat

To be continued…

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