Oosterdam Cruise Review by cruisin'75: Great cruise to Alaska and Victoria on the Oosterdam
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Great cruise to Alaska and Victoria on the Oosterdam
I have never written a review on a message board before but I read the reviews of the Oosterdam before we left (some good, some bad) and I wanted to share our experience (June 16-23, 2013) because it was such a good one.
My parents took my family of 4 and my sister's family of 4 on this cruise. When we went to embark at 12:30 in Seattle it took about an hour to get on the ship.
We were pleased with our room (see cabin description). We spent the first few days at sea exploring the ship and attending some activities (the high tea was delicious, the trivia was fun). Every time I went to the gym there was only about 10 people in there- which was great. I ran on the promenade and it was not crowded- everyone else was walking. The kids spent literally hours and hours in the Lido pool (sometimes the roof was closed, sometimes open). They also liked to play ping pong and giant chess there. They also loved the views from the Crow's Nest. We played basketball a little but it More was very windy. The evening entertainment was good.
The service was amazing- almost every employee we interacted with was very polite and competent. Our room steward was very friendly, quick and efficient. Our dining steward was wonderful- quickly learning the 4 children's names and dining preferences.
The food in the main dining room was great- everything all 10 of us had we enjoyed. The food in the Lido buffet was not as good but still very good. If you have time (like when you are at sea) I do recommend having breakfast in the main dining room. Room service (two times) took about 30 minutes and was very good- as ordered.
We were very fortunate with the weather- 70s the first few days and a high of 80 in Junea, 65 in Sitka, rainy and 55 in Ketchikan, then nice again (68) in Victoria.
Cruising through the Inside Passage/ Tracy Arm Fjord was stunning. We stayed on our verandah the whole time. Used our good binoculars and zoom lens alot. We saw eagles, whales, porpoises, otters, and seals.
My daughter and husband went ziplining in Juneau (through the ship's shore excursion) and loved it- though it was spendy. The rest of us took the tram to the peak and had a really good time hiking, seeing the eagle refuge, watching the movie and a family of musicians who were amazing.
In Sitka we went hiking in the rain forest then to the museum which was free and very informative/interesting.
In Ketchikan we went on the Duck Tour which was entertaining and a good way to see the whole town. My husband and son tried to go fishing there but the tours were full so if an excursion is important to you, you should book early.
In Victoria we took a cab (50$ each way) to the Buschart Gardens (admission $30 for adults, only $3 for kids). They were incredibly beautiful. All four of us really enjoyed them. We saved $120 going it ourselves instead of booking through the ship.
Disembarking was very quick- literally walking right off.
Overall, a great experience. The only cons were the drinks ($8/each) and the photos ($40/each) were expensive. But of course, these are optional. I would definitely cruise on Holland America again. Less
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