Storm-hit Fred ship skips Canaries and heads to Madeira

Fred Olsen Balmoral cruise cancelled
By Linsey McNeill
07/11/2023
Home » Storm-hit Fred ship skips Canaries and heads to Madeira

Fred. Olsen Cruise Line’s Balmoral has amended its round-trip sailing from Southampton to the Canary Islands and Madeira after being hit by stormy weather.

The ship was forced to shelter in Getxo in northern Spain from Thursday till Sunday to ride out the storm.

It had suffered minor damage to one of its engines and some cabins on Deck 4, according to the cruise line. An area of the Neptune Lounge was also damaged, it said.

Following repairs, the ship left Spain on Sunday and is currently heading straight to Madeira for a planned Fleet in Funchal event on 9 November, skipping three stops in the Canary Islands. It had been due to call at Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, San Sebastian de la Gomera and Santa Cruz de la Palma during the 15-night cruise. Instead, Balmoral will now only stop in Funchal before heading for Lisbon, the final port of call.

The Fleet in Funchal event will mark the fact all three of the Fred. Olsen ships – Bolette, Borealis and Balmoral – will be in port together – with celebrations in port and sail away parties on board all ships.

Managing Director Peter Deer said: “Balmoral’s itinerary for The Canary Islands with the Fleet in Funchal cruise was affected by last week’s worsening storms. The decision was made for the ship to seek shelter in Getxo, northern Spain, over the weekend. The storm caused some limited non-structural damage, but this has already been fixed.

“The improving weather conditions meant that Balmoral departed Getxo on Sunday and is now on her way to Madeira for Thursday’s Fleet in Funchal event where she is expected to arrive slightly ahead of schedule.

“She will then take guests to Lisbon to complete her original itinerary before returning to Southampton.”

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