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18 Night Panama Canal & Central America Cruise from Fort Lauderdale

18 Night Panama Canal & Central America Cruise from Fort Lauderdale (Port Everglades)

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Itinerary

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  • Day 1
    Fort Lauderdale (Port Everglades)
  • Day 2
    Half Moon Cay
  • Day 3
    Cruising
  • Day 4
    Cruising
  • Day 5
    Curacao
  • Day 6
    Aruba
  • Day 7
    Cruising
  • Day 8
    Panama Canal (Cruising)
  • Day 8
    Panama Canal
  • Day 9
    Cruising
  • Day 10
    Puntarenas (Puerto Caldera)
  • Day 11
    Corinto
  • Day 12
    Puerto Quetzal (Antigua)
  • Day 13
    Puerto Chiapas
  • Day 14
    Huatulco
  • Day 15
    Cruising
  • Day 16
    Puerto Vallarta
  • Day 17
    Cruising
  • Day 18
    Cruising
  • Day 19
    San Diego

Volendam

Volendam - Holland America Line

Pros

Incredibly polished service from friendly, well-trained crew

Cons

Does show its age in several areas throughout the ship

Bottom Line

Nice variety of activities, amenities and enrichment on a manageable midsize vessel


Cruise Reviews

Just what you want for a Southern Caribbean Cruise, relaxation. Wonderful ports plus lots of days at Sea on a smaller ship with about a 1000 passengers. Tobago was like the Caribbean of past decades.. beach pretty empty, water clear to 10 ... Read More
Just what you want for a Southern Caribbean Cruise, relaxation. Wonderful ports plus lots of days at Sea on a smaller ship with about a 1000 passengers. Tobago was like the Caribbean of past decades.. beach pretty empty, water clear to 10 feet, beautiful brightly colored fish swimming all around. Barbados still our number 1 Island, Aruba, Curaçao, Trinidad, Tobago, St. John, St. Martin, grand Cayman, and well Jamaica which is like a day at sea for us. Entertainment for HAL was ok... just added two pianos plus Lincoln Center, quintet of Classical musicians. Some of the special entertainers were great, some so so.. one poor comedian was horrible..painful to,watch. Never a problem with pool chairs, come out at 1 if you wish, still get your choice. Fellow cruisers very nice. On such a small ship you get to know many of them quite well in 16 days. New Years Eve party was nicely done and the newly added Orange Night was a blast. I had no idea HAL could be so lively! Lots of dancing. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
Because of this cruise, I am no longer feeling the love I used to feel as a 3 star mariner on HAL. We had a very spacious cabin 2555, but in the 16 days we were in it, the air conditioning never worked and the toilet never flushed ... Read More
Because of this cruise, I am no longer feeling the love I used to feel as a 3 star mariner on HAL. We had a very spacious cabin 2555, but in the 16 days we were in it, the air conditioning never worked and the toilet never flushed properly. This is an inside wheelchair cabin, so in the hot Caribbean temperatures, a non-working toilet plus no a/c was a living hell. I of course complained multiple times daily, but the only option was a desk fan which simply circulated the foul-smelling air. The guest services office gave us a free dinner at Cannaletto, but then insisted that the temp of our cabin was 18 degrees celcius. Maybe it was if you hold the meter up at the a/c vent, but that doesn't help that there was no air blowing into the 80 degree F cabin! We laid in the wet bedsheets every night, sweating like pigs in the sewage-smelling inside air. Sickening! Enbarcation was smooth, disembarcation was also smooth. The impressionist Robbie Howard was fantastic! The Jersey Boys and the FlyRight trio were exceptionally great. The food in the MDR was delicious, and they never made any mistakes regarding the accommodation of my tomato food allergy. Our MDR waiters, Awan and GeDe were fantastic. Our room stewards on deck 2 were great! Our southern Caribbean ports of call were fantastic, all of them. Now we have been on 30 cruises, not all with HAL, and 74 foreign countries total. With a manual wheelchair I might add. The best meal I had was the filet mignon/ lobster tail entree with chocolate souffle dessert. Just wonderful! The service in the LIDO was hit or miss, depending on who was the staff in that section. If we sat in the Cannaletto area for breakfast, the staff came around with hot, delicious coffee every 5 minutes. Anything you wanted. The further we sat away from that section, we got less to no service whatsoever. I had to clean my own table and fetch my own coffee twice. Once in the MDR breakfast I requested scrambled eggs and got some terrible tasting powdered eggs instead. I refused them and it took 30 minutes to receive hot, real chicken eggs. Not good! Again in the MDR if we were seated far away from other larger tables, we got no service at all. Most of the guests were of retirement age, but there was a group of very annoying and loud teenagers who ruined the peaceful quiet several times in the Explorer Lounge area. Some of those teenagers and their families were escorted off the ship in Aruba because they got into a bloody fist fight.. That helped the noise level on the ship. I was cerytainly glad to see those families leave the ship in Aruba. Many people complained about the noise those teens were causing. Also, the casino noise was overwhelming, and when I complained to Nicu the casino supervisor that the noise was spilling into the Hudson room and the Explorer Lounge, he smiled because he encouraged that noise. I called security to intervene, but they never arrived on scene. HAL wants more to make money in that casino than to offer a quiet spot for people to play cards and read. Making money is HAL's agenda goal. The daily gratuities continue to increase, so we asked that they be deleted. The HAL corporation is not getting my gratuities as gravy for themselves; instead I give cash to those employees who serve me personally. I figure that this vacation was paid for at least 90 days before I stepped on the ship, and I know for a fact that those gratuities do not reach my stewards and waiters specifically. HAL is worth millions. They pay the staff the same whether or not I pay the $14.50 daily gratuities per person so I will not add to that if there is an option to deny the corporation even more money than I agreed to pay. Your opinion may vary, but it's my vacation and my money. The hotel supervisor tried to get us to accept a cabin 1/4 the size of 2555 that he claimed was an upgrade. It was an insult. I feel that if HAL really wanted to make us happy after putting us in a cabin without a working toilet or a/c they could have done so; the ship was not full. Instead they chose not to make us happy. We will certainly remember that when we decide to book another cruise. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
As always, the ship, crew and food were great! The biggest issue was that more modern venues for entertainment have been shut down on the smaller boats. In the Ocean bar, the trio band (think older standards for ballroom dancing) played ... Read More
As always, the ship, crew and food were great! The biggest issue was that more modern venues for entertainment have been shut down on the smaller boats. In the Ocean bar, the trio band (think older standards for ballroom dancing) played every night till 10pm and then at 11pm the cruise entertainment person took on the additional duty of DJ for the only dance floor left on the boat. Since it was so late that some modern music was being played, there were few guests staying up to go dancing. And it is not like we do not enjoy older music -- my wife and I often go to WWII dances that play the music of the 40's and 50's. But 16 days of the trio was a bit too much. The dance floor at the Crow's nest has been covered over with carpet and we were told all the other boats on Holland were like this also. The Crow's Nest is totally dead at night and the only reason to go there is happy hour at 10pm to get you 2 drinks to take with you to other venues. The dueling piano players lacked something on this trip and ruined many a song. Generally, the under 70 crowd walked around after the evening show looking for something to do or watch sports at the Billboard venue. My wife and I have been on many Holland trips and prefer this cruise line over others, but we both agreed that we may have to look at other lines. We had a great time on last year's Holland trip over New Year's. We enjoy smaller boats, but we may have to give this up and go on larger capacity boats on Holland or other lines. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
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