We sailed on the first part of the Voyage of the Vikings. 17 days from Boston to Rotterdam. This is our 9th cruise, our 4th 14 days or over, but it was our longest. We have been on HAL 3 times before and really feel they are upping their game every time. First this was a whole new experience verses the 7 day Alaska, Caribbean or Mexico cruise. I thought I would be bored with 7 sea days but never was. They had a visiting chef from Public Restaurant in New York that was fabulous. The highlight in entertainment was the Opera singers. They had a group of 4 singers that sing at Covent Garden and with other opera companies in Europe. They were fabulous. Best entertainment we ever had on a cruise ship. We were upgraded but our cabin was on the main deck about 3 rooms from the bow and we had some noise issues with the side thrusters when they were trying to get into port. The food is better than on 7 day cruises, they do some special seafood days where they buy it fresh on the Faroe Islands and then grill it on deck for lunch. Food compares favorably with Oceania who we used to think was better but not on this cruise.
Cabin stewart and waiter were great. Wine cards are a super deal, 20 glasses for $67.50. The Merlot is the best. Ports, We went on our own to St.John, Nuuk Greenland, (they are discontinuing this one not much there) Stavanger, we went to the petroleum museum and walked around they are re-doing the old section around the harbor, so that was under construction. Kristansund, took little tourist train around the city and walked, we did have rain that day. Oslo took trolley bus and saw Viking Ship, Nordic Folk Museum, (it is a Colonial Williamsburg of Norway) don't miss and a quick stop at the National Gallery (it's free). all in one day. Our only ship tour was the Golden Circle Tour out of Reykjavik Iceland. Beautiful scenery but very disorganized. They actually lost some people. Met someone who got a taxi at the pier and did it all for $100 vs. $177 on the ship. Did not do the Glacier Lake at Djonisvek Iceland, everyone said it was great. Now for the downside, the people that can do long cruises are old, REALLY OLD, and sick, REALLY SICK, and left their brains on the pier in Boston. I am late 40's and my husband is in his 60's so we know we are younger than the usual cruisers, but we had some geezers on this cruise. We would share our funniest geezer moment every night at dinner. Also they would constantly complain, not only to the staff but to anyone that would listen. But you know what, they were the same people standing in line to sign up for another long cruise next year. Now our table mates were great. HAL obviously put us with some younger people. 50's and 60's so that was a high point.
The action for nightlife was dancing at 4:30 pm before early dinner. The place was humming with the aforementioned age group. Don't go on this cruise for the partying or the kids. There were only 16 kids on the ship, though they did stick together. The new library was unbelievable. Loved the classics and art books and just a great place to read and look at the ocean. Would do it again, but still have other places to go.