Well, I thought I would share with you my latest cruise. This time I returned from Alaska on the Holland America Statendam. The cruise was a 7 day cruise with 3 stops. This was my sixth cruise, with five previously done with Carnival. I've always enjoyed Carnival so I had reservations about changing cruise lines. However, at the end of this cruise, I found Holland America to be the better of the two.
Embarkation: We arrived in Vancouver, B.C. and went directly to the ship. If you chose to go directly to go to the ship you can skip the cumbersome lines of customs. More importantly, Holland America will take care of the bags so you don't have to drag them from the baggage area to the bus. You then get on the bus and go on a 20 minute trip down to the docks. Once we arrived at the dock, the check-in procedure took only about 15 minutes. We were then on-board and in our stateroom!
Stateroom: On this particular occasion we booked the Inside Stateroom on Main Deck 5. The room was above average in size, and very clean. There have been reports of "sewage smells" in the hallways. We found none of these reports to be true. In my sister's stateroom the air conditioning wasn't working properly when they first arrived.
However, the maintenance team had it corrected before the ship left dock.
Food: There was the Main Dining room where you can get a full sit down breakfast, lunch or dinner or you could go up to the Lido Deck for a buffet meal. Both were very good. A wide choice of meals for everyone to chose from. For kids, they could get a hotdog, hamburger or could order a NY steak from the buffet. Desserts were excellent, and again a wide variety.
Shore Excursions: In Ketchikan, we took the Best of Ketchikan, Land and Sea. It was fun and well worth the price. In Juneau, we did the Mendenhall Glacier and the Alaskan Salmon Bake. Both were well worth the money. In Skagway, I did two tours. The White Pass Railroad Train that took 3 ½ hours. I enjoyed it, but my sister fell a sleep. Finally, I took a tour of Good Times Girls and City Tour. It was about the life of a hooker living in the bordello's of Skagway. Worth the time and money.
Overall: This was a very good cruise. Everything clicked. Holland America did an outstanding job from beginning to end.