Tuesday, 4 June 2013

Sailing with Marine Atlantic on the M.V. AtlanticVision

By Keith and Heather Nicol   
       They say there are no accidental tourists in Newfoundland. You have to plan your trip to get here since there are no easy links to the Island. Ferries connect a few key locations and they are the main entry point for visitors travelling by car or R.V. Marine Atlantic through its fleet of ferries is a main contact and the Newfoundland ports of entry are Port aux Basques and Argentia. Port aux Basques serves visitors wishing to explore the West Coast of Newfoundland, while Argentia is conveniently located for people visiting St. John’s and the Avalon Peninsula. Both of these ferries connect Newfoundland with North Sidney, Nova Scotia. We recently had a chance to take the M.V. Atlantic Vision and it is almost like taking a cruise ship. They have an Internet Café, gift shop and children’s play area. There are public areas with T.V.’s and about 200 reclining seats. It offers full course meals as well as quick service dining options. And if you have good weather and are taking a day crossing you can head out on deck to enjoy the scenery and possibly see whales and sea birds. 

The Lounge on the M. V. Vision is perfect for reading, visiting or watching T.V.
      Lately Marine Atlantic has been featuring ads encouraging visitors to sleep overnight on the ferry and that way you arrive rested to start your tour of Newfoundland. Throughout most of June there are 2 sailings per day between North Sidney and Port aux Basques and the night crossing will get you in early to Port aux Basques so you have a full day to get to your destination. This changes in July and August when there is often a third sailing added to this popular route. Nevertheless the night crossing is certainly one to look into since the cost is roughly what you might pay at a hotel and you get to be lulled to sleep by the waves. On our most recent trip in early June we took the night crossing and found the beds comfortable and the rooms well appointed. The M.V. Atlantic Vision has 150 cabins ranging from 2 berth to deluxe cabins. The 2 berth cabins have a small bathroom, T.V., writing desk and stool as well as power outlets and a hair dryer. Most people certainly don’t need anything else. Contact Marine Atlantic  (http://www.marine-atlantic.ca/) to book your passage and consider a night crossing if you want to make the most of your holiday. 

The deluxe cabins on the M.V. Atlantic Vision are well appointed

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