Cruising with family on both eastern and western Caribbean: Nieuw Amsterdam Cruise Review by borabora1
Overall Member Rating
Cruising with family on both eastern and western Caribbean
Destination: Eastern Caribbean
Embarkation: Fort Lauderdale (Port Everglades)
We sailed Holland America Cruise line for 14 days from Feb. 16-March 2nd. We flew to Miami airport and rented a car to Fort Lauderdale. We probably won’t fly into Miami ever again. It’s huge and chaotic. We’ll fly into Fort Lauderdale next time.
We went on the Nieuw Amsterdam ship. She was a beautiful ship. Very classy and mid-size ship newer ship. We really enjoyed the ship. Here’s the highlights:
Food- awesome! Anything you can think of. They even have an Asian restaurant on the ship
Entertainment- great! We saw a magic show, juggler show, musical, comedian and a show like More “Stomp”
Pool- Nice- there’s a few of them
Service- awesome! The nicest people
There are other things to do on the ship too. Casino, piano bar, dance club, movie theater etc….
Kids Club- The BEST! They are open everyday from 9am to 10pm. With a couple of breaks in between. Our kids loved it there. They kids went there all the time. They met new friends and had so much fun. We would feed them dinner first then dropped them off at the kids club and then we would go to the nice restaurant and have dinner and then see a show. They were totally spoiled at the kids club. They have so many activities and games. Every night they even have a server come and serve them treats like chocolate strawberries, cookies, ice cream and fruits. The kids misses this the most! This service is included with no extra cost.
The Islands we visited:
Grand Turk- Beautiful! The beach is right off the cruise port. Nice swimming pool, restaurants and shopping. My husband and the older kids went with another family on a stingray excursion. They rented a private boat and saw stingrays, sharks and snorkeled at the “drop off” (like Nemo). Super fun. I stayed on the beach with my younger daughter and had a great time on the beach.
San Juan Puerto Rico- We just walked around old San Juan. Did some shopping and site seeing.
St. Thomas- Went to Coral World. It’s a small outdoor aquarium. Nice for the little kids. But would be boring for the older kids. Then we went next door to Coki’s beach. It was a really nice beach. Kinda touristy though. But we enjoyed snorkeling there. Water is super warm and clear.
Half Moon Cay- We went here twice. The most beautiful beach. The sand is super soft like bakers sugar. This is a private island owned by Holland America. There is only 9 people that lives there. There is a play structure for kids to play. Tons of beach chairs and cool pirate ship area. We loved this island the most.
Cayman Island- Went to Dolphins Cove. Really cool place to interact and swim with the dolphins. Very nice and well kept place. My kids were scared at first. But they were really nice and let my kids warm up to the dolphins. It’s a very expensive excursion. From $99 to $130 per person and then another $150 for the photos. And of course you have to buy all the photos. They are all so cute!
Cozumel Mexico- So much to do here. We went to Paradise beach. They had a huge pool and restaurant. Super clean and nice. They have beach chairs and umbrellas. They also have tons of inflatable bouncy toys in the ocean. It’s like Pump It Up in the ocean. The cost for the pool usage is only $3 per person. The bouncy toys in the ocean was $15 per person. It was totally worth it. We spent the whole day there.
Key West Fl- Nice little town. Just went shopping and stopped by a small beach.
I highly recommend cruising for young families. Holland America cruise line is known for older people. Not too many kids on the ship. We liked that better. They get more personalized attention. They are a mid size ship and focus more on good service and good food. You can’t go wrong with going to the Caribbean Islands. I like the eastern for the beaches and I like the western for the exciting excursions. Less