Rotterdam Cruise Review by IslandExplorer: Smooth sailing
Member Since 2012
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This pleasant, incident-free cruise started and ended in Rotterdam, and stopped at Copenhagen, Warnemunda, Talinn, St Petersburg, Stockholm and Arhus. The Baltic ports were all interesting. The three biggest highlights for us: (1) the Church on the Spilled Blood in St Petersburg; (2) the cruise through the Stockholm archipelago; (3) the early morning cruise into Rotterdam with the waterspout boats heralding our arrival.
With one exception, at all of the ports we were able to get by easily without taking an excursion. We took excursions in St Petersburg, but now that we've seen it, if we go back in the future we'll get visas.
The ship was smaller than what were used to, but it was fine. The ship didn't feel crowded to us. It had pretty well everything the larger boats had. This ship had one of the largest libraries I've ever seen on a cruise ship, of any size. We really appreciated the access to the front deck. (No one seemed to be using the water-lounge set up on the More back. It was never filled with water. Time to get rid of that?)
The endless, excellent food was great, as usual. With a few exceptions, the food seemed to be more or less the same in the main LaFontaine restaurant as in the Lido restaurant, so after a while we stopped going to the Lafontaine dining room altogether. Yes, we brought formal clothes, and gave it a try. It's just not for us.
Our cabin (Vista class suite with balcony on deck 6) was excellent. We were located amidships, with easy access to the lifts, laundry room and ice machines. No problems in our cabin at all.
There were some children on board, but not many.
Half of the passengers on this cruise were Dutch for some reason. (That doesn't happen for every Rotterdam sailing.) I prefer ships that are more of a mix.
The entertainment was appreciated, although it did not always appeal to us.
In the formal dining room, we got tired of the minor trouble it took to get a table for two at around 7 or 7:30. If I can make a suggestion: please get rid of those huge tables for 12 people. No one wants to dine with complete strangers. We certainly didn't.
I'm afraid we've reached the point were wifi should be free, and the television more varied. This is the 21st century. We have the technology. Even airlines can do it, so why not the cruise lines?
It was a great cruise, and I highly recommend this itinerary and this ship. We love HAL, and will try their cruises in the future. Less
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