Adieu Saga Pearl II: The mini cruiser sailed past Penarth Head for the last time tonight. She’s due top be taken out of service next year

The cruise ship Saga Pearl said past Penarth tonight for the last time on a farewell schedule of voyages which preludes her withdrawal from service next year .

She docked in Cardiff at 06:00 this morning and set sail again after a swift turn around at 19:00 this evening.

On a grey and rather bleak evening a few passengers braved the elements to watch the shores of Penarth disappear into the distance

The compact 29 year old mini-liner is very different from most of the cruise ships currently afloat. The ship is only 165 metres long and small enough to navigate the Norwegian fjords and call in at smaller ports which are out of bounds to larger liners

She was launched originally as Astoria but was  snapped up by Saga Cruises in an auction in August 2009 and given the name Saga Pearl II before embarking on her  cruising career for the mature adults’ holiday company in March 2010.

Saga Pearl II emits black smoke as her elderly diesel engines gather speed for the run down the Bristol Channel and the open sea

Saga’s Nick Sunderland, says “My first cruises as a Saga captain were aboard Saga Pearl II and she’ll always have a special place in my heart. She really is like a large yacht with her beautiful teak decks. Taking her helm feels different from any other cruise ship.”


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  1. Peter King says:

    She’ll be stuffed to the gills with PDN folk. They love their Saga breaks.

    • Peter Church says:

      Why aren’t you there then 🙂

      • Peter King says:

        I’m giving it a miss. Can’t face the conversation at the bar. Radioactive mud, viewing platform, Labour, police, cyclists, Labour, potholes, black bags, Police Commissioner, Labour, Penarth Town Council, refugees , Doughty. 😣

      • Peter King says:

        Oh sorry, did I forget to mention Labour?

  2. whatsoccurin says:

    Used to enjoy watching “Saga Ruby” coming in some years ago-checked on line, it was refurbished,sold, but the new owners felt it was not up to modern standards and it was scrapped-did not expect that.

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