This was our first HAL cruise, and we were very pleased.
Veendam is a smaller ship than any of the other cruises we've taken, so we were concerned, but pleasantly surprised.
The embarkation was quick and staff very friendly. We were on the the ship by 11:30, ate lunch at the Lido, and in our cabin with all our luggage by 12:30. Couldn't believe it!
Cabin 760 was on 4th floor, midship outside cabin with large picture window. Tons of storage, and super comfortable beds. Large bathroom with tub & shower. Great water pressure. Only concerns were no fridge, and AC seemed to be acting up. Cabin was often too warm, or too cold. Our cabin steward kept us well stocked with a large ice bucket for our drinks, so the missing fridge was not an issue.
We had great weather, unlike the week before. Windy, but great to see the NYC skyline, and sailing by the Statue of Liberty. We met a couple on deck as we sailed away, and stayed friends all week.
The sail to Bermuda was very smooth, and no complaints from anyone with motion sickness.
Open seating for dinner turned out to be great! Never had to rush to be ready for a specific time. Met so many wonderful guests, as we sat with large groups in the Rotterdam every night but one. We decide one night to not dress up for dinner, so we ate at the Lido, and it was great too.
We worried that we wouldn't find much to do on this smaller ship, but we were wrong. We played tennis, shuffle board, & ping pong. Casino was small, but staff very nice. We watched the shows each night, but didn't really care for the singing shows so much. They were beautiful singers, but each night seemed the same with no storyline. We'd prefer theatrical shows rather than just singing with beautiful gowns on. We really loved the 2 nights with the comedians. Nothing like a good laugh after a wonderful dinner.
We rented an in-cabin movie one night. 1000 movies to choose from, delivered free to our cabin. We got the Ship Flicks pkg. which gave us popcorn, 4 sodas, nuts, and other snacks for $10.
Lattes at the Exploration Cafe were delicious.
All the meals onboard were wonderful! The staff were very friendly. Rotterdam dining room service was very slow some nights, but the food and chatting with new friends made up for it.
We had dinner at the Pinnacle Grill one night for our anniversary dinner. It was wonderful.
Never had a problem finding a deck chair to lounge in.
So nice to dock right downtown on Front Street in Hamilton, Bermuda. We walked on & off the ship as often as we liked. Small ship equals no big line ups to get on & off the ship.
First day in Bermuda we took a taxi to Crystal Caves. Cab driver "Cheeks" was a wonderful tour guide. These caves are an amazing sight to see.
A short walk from the ship to the bus terminal, where you can buy tokens for the pink busses. We took the bus twice to the beautiful beaches. Everyone on the island is polite and friendly.
We did 1 excursion. Glass Bottom Boat & Snorkle. The crew were great, and the excursion was a lot of fun.
We arrived on time in Bermuda, and on time again back in New York.
To sum up, we loved everything about the ship, and Bermuda. Wish we could go again!