Cartagena is continuing to be a popular port of call for cruise ships passing through the Mediterranean; much enjoyed by passengers exploring our City and taking shore excursions to appreciate the local scenery/places of interest.

Of the vessels here in Cartagena during October was P & O’s fine vessel Aurora, having arrived first light on the 13th nearing the end of a Mediterranean cruise that commenced in Southampton.  It departed from here early evening bound for Gibraltar, arriving on 14th from where it returned to its home port of Southampton.

With Aurora being alongside our Cruise Terminal, I have pictured my good friend Paul, being the serving ship’s boatswain, who managed to obtain shore leave for us to enjoy a coffee in town together.

Boatswain, also known as a Bosun and Petty Officer – is the senior crewman of the deck, responsible for the ship’s hull and all its components including fire-fighting equipment, anchors, cables and boats – in the case of cruise ships it includes lifeboats and tenders (used to ferry passengers to and from shore where ship is ‘anchored off’). He is considered the foreman and supervises other crew members of the deck department with safety to the vessel and passengers being of paramount importance.

Aurora is exclusively for adults – with a sky dome over her crystal pool and stylish surrounds allowing pleasure whatever the weather. 

Passenger capacity is 1,874 with 10 passenger decks offering a wide selection of bars, diverse entertainment and a comprehensive restaurant as will be seen from a number of pictures here kindly taken by Paul on behalf of the Costa Cálida Chronicle.

On Aurora’s arrival and departure, as normally on P & O cruise ships, in a prominent position I displayed the company’s house flag, the UK merchant vessel’s ‘Red Duster’ and the Spanish flag when, without exception is visibly well received from on board and local observers alike. This often results in the Captain giving several loud blasts on the ship’s horn. 

Paul is serving on board until early December, so he will be home for Christmas, expecting to be positioned on his next turn of duty to Aurora in the New Year.  A more honest, cheery member of the crew one could never meet; devoted to his duties on board and the safety of passengers.