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Cruise norovirus: Video shows sick bug hit Royal Caribbean ship | Travel News | Travel

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A total of 9,000 passengers are on board the plush vessel, with a section falling ill to the winter stomach bug that causes vomiting and diarrhoea. The ship was transporting guests to the sunshine hotspot of Jamaica from Florida and a spokesperson has confirmed its route will now end early. After the illness was flagged to staff, they put a ban on passengers leaving the vessel as they drafted in emergency medication. A huge sanitisation process was underway almost immediately, with cruise ship employees spraying down communal areas as it docked in Falmouth, on the northern side of Jamaica.

Its passengers, who are in the midst of a seven day cruise around the Caribbean islands, have now taken to social media to document the efforts and praise the reaction of the company.

Twitter user Mathew Michael, who is currently on board, told how the crew were doing an “A star” job.

He documented their efforts in a short video, uploaded alongside the caption: “At this rate the ship will be spic n’ span by Sunday night.

“I believe they called this level 3- alpha alpha alpha alert on the loud speaker – the entire #RoyalCaribbean crew is doing an awesome job, A+.”

He then added the jokey tagline: “Who ya gonna call, germ busters,” and an emoji icon.

The scenes on his video showed staff working together to spray the floors of the guest areas.

They can be seen getting down on their hands and knees to make sure all areas are covered, while carrying a big container of infection-busting fluid with them.

Another cruise passenger took to the social media site to share their experiences, and put: “Reality is people are still having fun.

“Workers visibly cleaning every surface. Stop trying to blow this up. @RoyalCaribbean handling this well.”

Another added: “100% agree. We haven’t seen a single sick person and Royal Caribbean is handling this amazingly well.

“Not a surface goes more than a few minutes without being sanitized. Well done RC!”

Following the illness outbreak, it has been confirmed the cruise route will switch up and finish a day early.

A spokesperson told Express.co.uk: “Oasis of the Seas will return to Port Canaveral a day early after an episode of gastrointestinal illness.

“A total of 277 guests and crew members have been affected since the ship departed on Jan 6 — about 3.3 percent of the people aboard the ship.

“All of the ship’s guests will receive full refunds of their cruise fare paid.

“We think the right thing to do is to get everyone home early rather than have guests worry about their health.

“Returning on Saturday also gives us more time to completely clean and sanitize the ship before her next sailing.”

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Travel & Escape

48 hours in . . . Bruges, an insider guide to Belgium’s city on water

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Little Bruges, the perfect pocket-sized medieval city, was a Sleeping Beauty. Laced with canals, it was one of the great North European trading ports in late medieval times. The magnificently detailed paintings of its artists, such as Jan van Eyck and Hans Memling, record its wealth in clothing, jewellery and ornament. Then it fell rapidly into decline and slept until rediscovered and restored to glory in the 19th century.

Today its new riches are in tourism, carefully managed and constantly refreshed by year-round cultural events, so that it retains the dynamism of a living city. The best way to appreciate all this is to stay a few days, luxuriating in the dreamily romantic boutique hotels, and visiting the rewarding museums and churches at your leisure. Above all, this is a place to walk and wonder, and there are still plenty of quiet corners to discover, where historic Bruges sleeps on.

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Europe’s most incredible cosy cabins for watching the Northern Lights

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The Northern Lights are a phenomenon likely to appear on the wish, bucket or to-do list of any intrepid traveller. And what better way to experience them in Europe than by bunking down in cosy cabins, surrounded by miles of forest, still water or the peaks of mountains. They might be pared-back but still boast polished elements, whether it’s a heated hot tub in Sweden, an ‘igloo’ extension in Norway or a glass roof above your bed in Finland. Nothing distracts as the Aurora Borealis flames across the sky – curl up under a blanket and take a look inside. . .

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The curious idiosyncrasies of the Icelandic, from elves and nudity to dark jokes and shark meat

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Iceland: the land of fire and ice, home to long winters, pickled foodstuff and perhaps the world’s most confounding alphabet. Considering a trip there? Arm yourself first with five of its more curious cultural quirks…

They believe in elves. Sort of

… at the very least, the ancient mysticism around them remains alive and well. According to an oft-quoted survey conducted by the University of Iceland, nearly 10 per cent of citizens actually believe elves to be real, while more than 80 per cent are on the fence but refuse to deny their existence.

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