2 Barcelona to Europe - Western Mediterranean Holland America Oosterdam Cruise Reviews

My husband and I have cruised many times, but never with Holland America. We chose them as we liked the Riviera itinerary and it certainly did not disappoint, nor did the Oosterdam. The ship has just been re-done and is stunning. Very ... Read More
My husband and I have cruised many times, but never with Holland America. We chose them as we liked the Riviera itinerary and it certainly did not disappoint, nor did the Oosterdam. The ship has just been re-done and is stunning. Very tastefully decorated. We had a verandah room which I don't think had been re-done yet (?), however it was very nice also. It has a nice size verandah with two reclining chairs and a table. The bathroom definitely hadn't been re-done, but was acceptable. We enjoyed the choices for evening entertainment, however felt that the "Main Stage" could use some improvement. I would say 50% of the shows in the Main Stage were good and the others just "so so" compared to Celebrity for example. The dining was excellent! We never felt the need to dine in the specialty dining venues. Food was great, presentation also very nice. Quantities were on the smaller side, but easily rectified obviously since you can have as much as you want and my husband would just ask prior to ordering so that it came on one plate vs. two different meals. We thought it may have been an older crowd based on things we had read about HA. We are mid 50's and I would say most were in their 50's or early 60's. This particular ship is suitable for couples from their 40's on as there really aren't children's activities, although they do have a children's club I believe. I think we saw 4 children during out 12 days. Service was exceptional in all areas, as you would expect. This was our first HA cruise, but definitely not our last. Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
We embarked at Barcelona.  Did an overnight stay at Hotel Ramblas - highly recommend as location is everything.  We had a window facing the street but noise was never an issue as the double glazed windows were very effective.  We ... Read More
We embarked at Barcelona.  Did an overnight stay at Hotel Ramblas - highly recommend as location is everything.  We had a window facing the street but noise was never an issue as the double glazed windows were very effective.  We embarked the next day at 11:30 and in less than 20min we were on the ship and having lunch in the Vista Dining Room. We had a fabulous vacation on the Oosterdam.  We found the crew very friendly and the front desk very gracious and helpful.  The cabin stewards are second to none.  Our tween has anaphylaxis to peanuts and the dining staff were very attentive to his food allergy on board as well as on the shore excursions where dinner was included.  The Lido buffet at breakfast, lunch and dinner offered plenty of choices and finding a table was never a problem even though our cruise was fully booked.  The Vista dining room food was average and the service was a little slow - but then what's the hurry?  We paid for shore excursions in Lucca, Rome, Olympia, Messina and Venice.  And for the most part they were long winded but you can't fault the passion they have for their country and you can always turn off the audio or just tune them out.  Monaco, Corfu, Dubrovnik are all very easy ports to do on your own.  We paid for internet service and had excellent WiFi access in our cabin but we were just below the Explorations Cafe.  But that being said, it is SLOW.  We also purchased unlimited laundry - $80 for the duration of the cruise.  Our laundry was always returned within 24hrs cleaned, pressed or on a hanger.  My only negative about the trip was the aggressiveness and deceitful photo gallery staff.  They are not employees of HAL and work on commission & you need to listen very carefully to their pitch.  I came up with a photo package that was much cheaper than what they were quoting and when I told the guy he should have told me how to select my pictures to get the best deal - he laughed and said "No you need to figure out and you are one of the few that did".  I also purchased the Panraven photo book.  The order form you sign says you are entitled to select 5 pictures, the email which I accessed on board says you are entitled to 5 pictures - but when I went to select my 5 they told me it was an old form and an old email and that I had to purchase the additional pictures.  And all our friends on the cruise were told the same thing..  I have since been in contact with Panraven and they informed me that I should have been instructed to select 5 pictures, but now it's too late.  If you are thinking of doing the photobook, Panraven customer service is exceptional.  I had Vista glitches and they were very responsive in making sure my issues were resolved and basically held me hand until I completed my book.  All in all a fabulous cruise, and my tween loved every minute of it.  He did not participate in HAL club.  He independently made friends and had a great time.  We disembarked in Venice.  The information about how to get to the airport was very sketchy so we paid for the very expensive ship to airport transfer because of our early flight.  Once we disembarked the ship, there were six - seven cabs waiting at the port terminal.  So certainly not a deluge of cabs but there are cabs if you happen to disembark early enough to get one. Read Less
Sail Date July 2009
Oosterdam Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.3
Dining 4.0 4.0
Entertainment 4.0 3.6
Public Rooms 4.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.5 3.9
Family 4.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.8
Enrichment 4.5 3.6
Service 4.0 4.3
Value For Money 4.0 3.9
Rates 4.0 4.2

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