Holland America Panama Canal & Central America Cruise Reviews

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Holland America Line

Cruise Critic Overview

  • Traditional cruising experience with modern touches
  • Around-the-world sailings offered
  • Extensive dining options and enrichment programs
  • Read full overview >>
388 Holland America Panama Canal & Central America Cruise Reviews
Cruiser rating
Excellent
182
Very Good
75
Average
59
Poor
42
Terrible
20
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38
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Romantic Cruises
21
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Repositioning Cruises
11
Rating Summary
Dining
Public Rooms
Cabin
Entertainment
Value for Money
Service
My & Mau
Member Since 2011
1 review
18 forum posts
4 helpful votes
Intro: I wanted to share how our trip on the Zuiderdam, which sailed Nov. 9th to Nov. 20th from Ft, Lauderdale, FL, was an overall positive and memorable experience for us. We typically plan a year in advance, but this go around, we waited ... Read more
grammy119
Member Since 2015
2 reviews
75 forum posts
Sailed October 2015
We previously sailed with HAL to Alaska. That was almost flawless so we were disappointed in the Veendam and some of the shore excursions. The cruise began with electrical problems on the ship which delayed our departure from FL by over ... Read more
DeeVeeCS
Member Since 2015
1 review
1 forum post
My wife and I booked a balcony stateroom on deck 6. This was our first cruise with Holland America and our 7th overall. Rather than trying to comment on every aspect of the experience, what I will focus on is what we particularly liked ... Read more
aamons
Member Since 2014
3 reviews
82 forum posts
2 helpful votes
First off, overall the service and attention to detail was excellent. The names of the dining room staff people who impressed us with their professionalism and friendliness and excellent service were Presty Sumitra, assistant dining room ... Read more
Prof Don
Member Since 2015
3 reviews
1 helpful vote
I have been to Panama before, but this voyage showed me a whole new way of seeing Central America. Our first port was Cartagena, Colombia, then through the Canal to Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Guatemala, Mexico and on to San Diego. From the ... Read more
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Prof Don
Member Since 2015
3 reviews
I have been to Panama before, but this voyage showed me a whole new way of seeing Central America. Our first port was Cartagena, Colombia, then through the Canal to Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Guatemala, Mexico and on to San Diego. From the ... Read more
nana2many
Member Since 2010
6 reviews
1 helpful vote
Sailed April 2015
This was our first cruise on HAL. I had pretty high expectations and was not disappointed. Embarkation was late starting due to Coast Guard not having cleared the ship. We learned it was just returning from dry dock and required Coast ... Read more
sgutierrez
Member Since 2015
1 review
2 helpful votes
The rating of this ship is generous according to reviews. Service was awful to non existing. Out of 14 nights in dining room my husband only had one night where his iced tea or water was refilled. Gone are the days where customers ... Read more
dandk%*
Member Since 2015
1 review
1 helpful vote
Sailed April 2015
My husband and I did this first cruise together and on HA. We stayed at the Best Western/Cruise Location in Fort Lauderdale the night before, it was super. They had a shuttle to the ship and got us there by 10:30 AM, great staff at ... Read more
old car guy
Member Since 2015
1 review
1 helpful vote
Sailed April 2015
The food was excellent and the entertainment was great. Got to score that as close as possible to 10 out of 10. The port and shore excursions could have also been 10 out of 10 if San Diego was not included on the list. What a dirty place. ... Read more
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canadianbear
Member Since 2009
3 reviews
1,875 forum post
Stateroom staff: best we have ever had, thank you to Rohman & Roni-they anticipated our needs and the first day we asked for something specific to be done every day and they never forgot. Great job! They always kept our fruit bowl ... Read more
ChesterLocksley
Member Since 2015
3 reviews
3 helpful votes
This was a trip of a lifetime for me. at the age of 12 year i was intrigued by the panama canal and finally at the age of 64 years i was going to experience it. Veendam was just wonderful. nice size, very comfortable, fantastic crew, ... Read more
aginglawyer
Member Since 2015
1 review
1 helpful vote
Sailed April 2015
PROS: 1. The dining staff and cabin staff are wonderful and will do anything to help you. Cheerful and sincere. 2. There are few lines for anything, even with a relatively full ship. 3. Embarkation and disembarkation at all ... Read more
Darshan1
Member Since 2009
12 reviews
25 forum posts
3 helpful votes
Though this is a negative review, there were several highlights on this sailing and excellent staff members including Angeli and Monica at guest services; our stewards, Hasan and Bambang; and Lisa, the ship’s enrichment lecturer. In ... Read more
baido
Member Since 2015
1 review
2 helpful votes
Very disappointed in port visits. Ship was late leaving port, we missed two ports completely and others cut short. Management first blamed ocean current issues from prior voyage, then later generator issues. Kept changing what was ... Read more
Helpful? Thank baido
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beval
Member Since 2015
1 review
2 helpful votes
Sailed February 2015
First time ever cruisers so have only anecdotes from friends who are more seasoned cruisers and our own expectations to base our comments on. Staff and service were excellent, definitely a strong point for HAL. Entertainment was ... Read more
Helpful? Thank beval
Exseadog
Member Since 2015
2 reviews
4 helpful votes
This was our 8th cruise with 5 different companies and was our worst ever cruise experience. I therefore wrote detailed letter to Mr Stein Cruise, President and CEO, and awaited a reply before commenting. The response from a ‘Special ... Read more
timbocruise
Member Since 2015
1 review
2 helpful votes
Sailed February 2015
Along with other people who have posted reviews on this cruise we were really unhappy with this cruise, particularly with the reasons given for all the alterations. I believe these all stemmed from the fact that the ship could not make ... Read more
Grammy Sims
Member Since 2015
1 review
Everything about this cruise was GREAT!!!! Ship was clean, staff was excellent and friendly, excursions were good. I would highly recommend this cruise to anyone wanting a fun relaxing vacation. The onboard entertainment was mediocre but ... Read more
tennisgal65
Member Since 2015
1 review
1 helpful vote
As others have already noted, the Panama Canal cruise on the Veendam from Ft, Lauderdale to San Diego, departing Feb. 21 was a huge disappointment. Due to the many missed ports (blamed on engine problems), we basically paid a lot of money ... Read more
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Conestoga Charlie
Member Since 2014
1 review
29 forum posts
We returned to Holland America after several years of cruising with Celebrity and Viking River Cruises. We had sailed previously on the Maasdam, Noordam and Rotterdam. My wife approached a return to Holland America with some skepticism ... Read more
HappyTravelFan
Member Since 2012
2 reviews
I chose the Holland America line (HAL) partly because a close friend/travel agent highly recommended it as did many experienced cruisers I’ve met. The other reasons were the ports of call and the excursions available. However, HAL ... Read more
carolpardun
Member Since 2015
2 reviews
1 forum post
Sailed February 2015
I had a great time traveling to the Panama Canal on board the Zuiderdam. I was wondering what I would think since many of the reviews focused on how old the ship was. Well, yes, the ship is old. And, yes, a few things need to be repaired. ... Read more
TurboArrow
Member Since 2007
1 review
15 forum posts
There were 8 of us traveling together on this trip. We flew in a day early and stayed at the Rodeway near the pier. It really needs some refurbishment and we had a couple of roaches on our floor so the overnight bag we opened went up on ... Read more
Tamara1234
Member Since 2015
1 review
We took our 84 year old mother on this cruise so I did know to expect that the cruise would cater to an older crowd. As a family we had a wonderful time. Would I go back NO! The ship is just ok. Our cabins were fabulous. We had a good time ... Read more
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