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Stena Line ferry to Hook of Holland?

(13 Posts)
ThomasRichard Wed 27-Jul-16 13:54:18

I'm taking the kids to Belgium at the end of August and have booked the overnight ferry from Harwich to the Hook of Holland and back. I've booked a cabin but I've never travelled overnight on a ferry and would like to know a bit about the logistics. How early can we board (I want to get them settled into bed well before the sailing time!)? What do I need to take on board? What happens when we arrive super-early; do they get everyone up and off straightaway? Any tips?

Grausse Wed 27-Jul-16 14:09:27

Did this with DC around ages 8 /10.
Don't know about boarding , check website.
You get bunks like an old fashioned sleeper train and a tiny bathroom. So overnight bag. Are you planning on staying in cabin? You might want to pack food and drink. Otherwise there are restaurants on board.
No chance of a lie in!
They tannoy hours before arrival to get you up and they want you off asap.

ThomasRichard Wed 27-Jul-16 14:23:40

Thanks! We're definitely planning on going straight to the cabin, putting the kids to bed and going to sleep. We'll eat before we get on and take breakfast with us so I'm not fussed about the entertainment or restaurants.

Natsku Wed 27-Jul-16 14:27:52

Ah you can't miss out on the buffet, that's the best thing about ferries to Hook of Holland! (we travelled on them a lot when I was a child)

Grausse Wed 27-Jul-16 14:31:50

Agreed Natsku - it was the highlight of the trip for DS1 and DS2, their first experience of a buffet grin.

ThomasRichard Wed 27-Jul-16 14:36:28

We'll be having a buffet tea for three days of the trip so hopefully they won't be too deprived. I can always see how the sailing out goes and book the breakfast for the way back!

Natsku Wed 27-Jul-16 15:00:46

I fondly remember eating one plate of chips followed by eight bowls of chocolate mousse!

ThomasRichard Wed 27-Jul-16 16:47:33

That sounds like my DC Natsku. I'm sure DD survived on ice cream and chips the last time we went abroad envy

Natsku Wed 27-Jul-16 19:37:27

That's pretty much what my DD survives on on holiday. Damnit, now I really want to have a ferry buffet! Had a really good one last time I went on a ferry - all different kinds of Nordic game meats and a huge selection of fancy puddings.

gardeningsarah Wed 27-Jul-16 19:55:00

Usually they start boarding the night ferry from Harwich 9pm ish, I think it depends on how busy they are. The cabins have bunk beds and ensuite facilities. As said above all you need is an overnight bag.
The next morning you will get woken up about an hour before arriving.

If you are travelling back from the Hoek of Holland on the overnight ferry you can board much earlier, from memory about 7.30pm, I think check opens about 6.30-7pm, again you will get woken up the next day about 5.30 to disembark at 6.30am. The ferry will already be alongside the quay having docked about 4am!

Agree you don't get much of lie-in!

Makemineacabsauv Thu 28-Jul-16 00:03:28

If you are planning on eating in Harwich before boarding Google the ONLY restaurant place near the ferry terminal and make sure you book a table. We weren't aware of the lack of restaurants and arrived to find it fully booked. It was only a lovely elderly couple who said we could sit at their table who saved us. Think they heard the Scottish accents and felt sorry for the single mum with 2 small kids. Staff didn't care. It's some sort of harvester place. I had driven round the town but it was dire with nowhere to eat. So be prepared! My 2 loved the cabin - bunk beds and a TV with a wee ensuite! Def hand luggage only! Very comfortable though. My DC also loved exploring the boat before bed. I packed wine and a good book which I enjoyed when they went to bed!!

Chippednailvarnishing Thu 28-Jul-16 00:06:50

It was Ds's birthday the last time we sailed so they let him "drive" the ship for a bit. I've got amazing photos of him wearing the captain's jacket and hat and sitting in his chair!

Lunde Thu 28-Jul-16 00:17:38

I travelled on this very ferry last week.

Boarding started around 8.30-9.00 on the overnight ferry - however when you are boarded depends in vehicle type - cars were boarded first

You will need a few overnight things - we also took a cool bag with some snacks. How your cabin looks depends on which type you book - I think dh had upgraded us as we had single beds, free wine and tea/coffee making

You need to be ready to go early - they anounce for people to go to the car deck 15 minutes before docking - you need to be there otherwise the people parked behind you are trapped.

There was a bit more subtle security last week as well - passports were being scrutinised and some vehicles were being checked

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