Unwinding aboard the elegant Silver Wind
Position as of this writing: 27° 50.19’ S, 32° 43.20’ E
Speed: 14 knots
Wind: 2.8 km
Bound for: Maputo, Mozambique
Guests aboard Silversea’s Silver Wind were treated to another relaxing day of cruising the Indian Ocean today, as we sail through the night bound for Maputo, Mozambique. This will be our northernmost port of call on this 10-night itinerary before we double-back and head south to further explore South African ports like Richards Bay, Durban, and East London.
Although overcast, temperatures remained wonderfully warm all day, averaging around 25 degrees Celsius. This naturally attracted guests to Silver Wind’s outdoor pool area and deck spaces, not to mention the private balconies that are featured on well over three quarters of all the ship’s accommodations.
That Silversea makes it easy to relax on a day like this is an understatement. Every level of accommodations here onboard the Silver Wind features butler service, complimented by a suite attendant. Together, they are there to ensure that no small detail goes overlooked during your voyage, and that starts with breakfast.
Today, I ate breakfast out on the veranda at La Terrazza on Deck 7, within view of the Silver Wind’s wake. But I also could have gone for a more traditional breakfast down in The Restaurant on Deck 4, or elected to take my breakfast poolside from 7:30am to 11am.
But your butler can also bring breakfast to you – as much as you’d like, of whatever you’d like, at the time you’d like. You can even take things one step further and create a standing breakfast order if you know you’ll always want to take breakfast in your suite. What’s more, it comes delivered with a tablecloth, full silverware settings, and a carafe of hot coffee, if so desired. And it can be set up inside your suite or outside on your balcony.
It’s plenty of choice for a ship that only carries 296 guests.
The atmosphere onboard is convivial, yet very mellow and laid-back; even moreso than aboard the line’s largest vessel, the still-intimate 540-guest Silver Spirit. But once again, I find myself meeting more fascinating people from all walks of life around the world than I do on trips with other lines. If you like your cruises to have a more international flair, you’ll feel right at home here.
For most of the day, we hugged the East African coastline, which looked remarkably like the Irish coast in many places, with lush, green hills rising majestically out of the water. That gave way to major port cities visible in the distance, and small flotillas of fishing boats just offshore. When I say “fishing boat”, don’t get any grandiose ideas: these were little more than motorized skiffs in many cases, and they were a very long way from land.
But many guests took their binoculars from their suites (every suite has a pair) up to Deck 9 to get a better view of the many dolphins that spent the better part of the afternoon swimming alongside the Silver Wind, keeping up nicely with out 15 knot speed.
And so the day progressed; a slow, relaxing day at sea aboard the luxurious Silver Wind. What did I do, you ask? Well, not a whole lot – and that’s entirely the point today. I read, I chatted with other guests, read some more, chatted some more…well, you get the idea. The great thing about a day at sea on Silversea is that you can pretty well do whatever, whenever. The focus is on you, and not on external features or distractions rock climbing walls or zip-lines. While these features are very cool, I think they distract guests from concentrating on themselves, and instead concentrating on trying to experience all the ship’s features at once. Aboard the Silver Wind, you are free to truly relax.
This evening, I attended the Venetian Society cocktail party and dinner, an event designed to recognize Silversea’s past guests. As per custom, awards for greatest number of days sailed with the line were handed out, with the “big kahuna” going to one couple from Norway that had accumulated an astonishing 950 days with Silversea.
Tonight, we’re sailing through one of the very best thunderstorms I’ve ever seen at sea. During dinner, lightning would light up windows on all three sides of the Restaurant, while a few hearty souls braved The Grill up on the Pool Deck, sitting out under the overhead cover as rain pounded down on it. As I write this, rain is streaming down one of the windows of my suite with such ferocity that it looks like someone is hosing them down. It’s making for a very cozy conclusion to a very relaxing day.
If all of this looks and sounds very cool, but you’ve never taken a luxury cruise before, Silversea announced yesterday that they’re rolling out a series of four, five and six-day voyages in Northern Europe and the Mediterranean this year aboard Silver Cloud, Silver Spirit and Silver Wind. They’re designed in such a way that they cater both to busy professionals and to travellers who may be looking to add a cruise onto the start or end of a land tour, or for those who’ve never had the opportunity to experience a luxury cruise product before.
I just have one warning for prospective Silversea cruisers: there was once a couple who tried Silversea. Now, after 950 days onboard, they’re still coming back for more.
I know I will be.
Silver Wind, South Africa
|Day 1||Cape Town, South Africa|
|Day 2||Cruising The Indian Ocean|
|Day 3||Addo Elephant Park|
|Day 4||Day at Sea|
|Day 5||Maputo, Mozambique|
|Day 6||iSimangaliso Wetland Park|
|Day 7||On Safari|
|Day 8||Durban & Tala Private Game Reserve|
|Day 9||East London & an Inkwenkwezi Safari|
|Day 10||Day at Sea|