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1,106 Holland America Seattle Cruise Reviews

We have always wanted to venture to Alaska, and the Inside Passage was truly amazing. So many islands, beautiful terrain. Lovely boat, overall, I must say. GREAT: America's Test Kitchen presentations were amazing. BB King ... Read More
We have always wanted to venture to Alaska, and the Inside Passage was truly amazing. So many islands, beautiful terrain. Lovely boat, overall, I must say. GREAT: America's Test Kitchen presentations were amazing. BB King club was also fantastic and fun! The best, however, was Fusion, the Quartet--such very talented musicians and just so entertaining. Erin was fantastic, and we loved her lovely voice as Cruise Director. The ship's staff was very friendly, mostly Filipino. (The friendliness, though, wasn't the kind of sincere relationships we have had with staff on past cruises. Seems like these poor people are paid miserably, and work very hard.) We loved Alaska and all the stops (Juneau, Ketichkan, & Sitka) -- recommend getting out into wilderness as much as you can. We saw bears and eagles. NOT SO GREAT: The classes at the fitness club were not great. Very mediocre, and meant for a "general" cruise crowd, not those athletic really. Young staff who talked down like you've never used a gym before. Decent gym, but more space needed for stretching and weights. Rudi's dining was a rip off--do not pay the extra money. The Palisade Cafe was good--fresh meat, filet, steak that was worth the extra mark up. In previous cruise experiences, you could get that kind of food on the regular menu. The drink packages are kind of a joke. Think carefully about what you want to consume and choose what package may work. My husband and I both bought the Signature Package, and were very upset that it wouldn't cover my favorite champagne by the glass (Veuve Cluvoe)... I would have been happy to pay the $2.50 difference from the $15.00 maximum charge for my package. They should be very clear about what you can and cannot buy, and the staff also seems to be very confused about this. Over $500 pp for the week is a lot to pay, and not worth all the confusion the packages can bring. The amount of time at the ports was dismal and rushed, especially the last stop in Victoria. Also, the ports are SO VERY touristy, with many of the jewelry and trinket shops being owned by the plethora of cruise companies. The excursions are way too expensive, and we would suggest booking with other, private companies. Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
Got a great deal on cruise to Alaska on the Oosterdam so we took it. Since we live near the west coast and are seniors on a limited budget, but love cruising. We shop for cruise deals primarily from the west coast which limits us pretty ... Read More
Got a great deal on cruise to Alaska on the Oosterdam so we took it. Since we live near the west coast and are seniors on a limited budget, but love cruising. We shop for cruise deals primarily from the west coast which limits us pretty much to Alaska and Mexico as destinations. This was our 16th cruise and second on HAL. In addition to HAL we have cruised Celebrity, Princess, Carnival Norwegian, and RCCL. We almost always get an oceanview (picture window, no balcony) room. We booked a fully obstructed view as we have been to Alaska twice before, both times with balconies. We have booked fully obstructed rooms before only to be given partially obstructed or non obstructed rooms when we got on board but this room was FULLY obstructed. No complaints. That is what we paid for and that is what we got. Embarkation at Seattle was super fast. Also our luggage was outside the door of our room before we got back from lunch. That was a first for us. Usually we are lucky if we get it right after dinner. HAL seems to have embarkation down really well. The room was a moderate size room for that category cabin compared to other ships we had been on. Not the smallest and not the largest. The bed, however, was the most comfortable of any bed I have had on any cruise ship anywhere. Both my wife and I tended to sleep in very late as we did not want to get out of that bed. It was wonderful. The ship itself is an older ship and that is evident but it is kept clean and functional. The food is very, very good in my opinion. I know people have particular and sometimes very different taste in food and what one person finds terrific, another finds horrible. I am very much a simple meat and potatoes type guy. I like my hot food hot, my cold food cold and tasty. I want the food to taste good enough that I would love to come back and have the same thing again. I am not an adventurous eater. I know what I like and am not particularly interested in trying new things. I really liked the food on both HAL ships I have been on. I always found something that appealed to me and it always tasted like I expected it to taste and good. Except for the pizza. The first evening I got a piece of plain cheese pizza. It was the worst pizza I have ever had on any cruise ship ever! I would swear to you that there was not a drop of tomato sauce underneath the cheese on the pizza. I could not see or taste any but when we questioned the staff they said there was. That was the only piece of pizza I had for the entire trip. It was BAAAD. Food in the main dining room was exceptional. Food in the buffet was above average for cruise buffet food. The desserts merit special praise. The Dive In next to the pool had great hamburgers and hot dogs. I found the main showroom entertainment disappointing. The were only two production shows and while the singers and dancers were certainly talented enough, they could only work with the material they had. I found the first show just OK and the second show very disappointing because of the choice of material,staging, production values as a whole. This was more than made up for by the entertainment provided by Jordan Wolf and Justin Lacey at Billboard in the small lounge across from the casino. These two young men played duet pianos across from each other and sang. They were amazing!!! People passing through on their way to the main stage show or elsewhere would stop, stand there and listen for the rest of the show. Their shows were standing room only. They became a nightly must see for us, as well as many others. The regulars got there early and got seats. The last night of the cruise, at the last show, those of us that were seated stood and gave them a standing ovation at the conclusion which spontaneously lasted for 10 minutes or more. If they were the only entertainment we saw on the cruise, we would have been more than satisfied. In addition to the production shows in the main theater, they had a comedian who I did not find particularly funny who spent part of his act talking about his autistic daughter, her development and accomplishments, which evoked pathos, but was not what I considered to be an evenings entertainment on a cruise ship. It was not, in my opinion, an appropriate venue for that discussion. There was also a comedian/magician who I thought was very good and very entertaining. Two things I have high standards for are entertainment and pizza. A third is hamburgers and hot dogs. I am not going to discuss the ports or Alaska, as we do not do excursions. Suffice it to say Alaska is beautiful. I could see it 20 times, it would still be beautiful. The ports are in Alaska. Enough said. When we go on cruises, we go on cruises to be on the ship. That is what we like. In Mexico, we do not even get off to see the ports much of the time. We have already seen them a whole bunch and they pretty much all the look the same to us. So I don't review ports. Could not tell you what to not miss and what to be sure and miss. The library on the ship, located in Explorations Cafe, is well stocked. The crows nest is great for looking out the windows and observing provided you can get a seat, which is a bit of a challenge. Did not go in the pool which others said was cold but did go in the hot tub which was more of a warm tub, which actually was okay by me. I could stay in longer. Service on the ship was very good and the staff were exceptional. They always smiled and greeted you warmly. Each staff member encountered would do whatever they could to help you, solve any problems and make your cruise enjoyable. Unfortunately, guest services has long lines and limited personnel to handle the amount of people needing assistance. Part of the problem, in my opinion, lies with that fact that HAL does not have an interactive account listing on your TV screen like other cruise lines do. Instead you have to go to guest services and either get a printout from one of two kiosks, if they are working, or speak with a guest services person after waiting in line forever. If you want to keep track of how much you are spending, being charged, your onboard credit, etc., expect to spend a lot of time at or near the guest services desk. Disembarkation was not quite as smooth as embarkation. We utilized the valet service which allows you to check your bags through to your final destination and get your airline boarding passes while still on the ship. We received written notice that we were in port valet group C and would be called to disembark at 8:15 am. The ship was scheduled to dock at 7 am. Our experience on cruise ships has been that usually we are called at the disembarkation time or later. We went up to eat breakfast at 7 am. At 7:15 our group was called for disembarkation. We rushed back to the room to get our carry-ons and disembark, barely having had anything to eat. I hope I conveyed that the pluses on this ship and this line far outweighed the minuses and I would take this cruise again in a New York minute. Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
For older individuals and easier cruising. Not as many children on board quieter and easier on me. Enjoyed the food and towns we visited. Picked up gifts for all family at stops along the way. Due to Sept travel had end of year ... Read More
For older individuals and easier cruising. Not as many children on board quieter and easier on me. Enjoyed the food and towns we visited. Picked up gifts for all family at stops along the way. Due to Sept travel had end of year clearances everywhere. Had breakfast, lunch, English tea, dinner we seemed to be eating all day. When I wanted pizza there was a shop open making pizza. Dive in served great hamburgers, fries in many varieties. Bring a water bottle and fill up in the buffet area for your use and you won't have to pay for water on the cruise. Cola and liquor is costly but you can bring one bottle of wine each adult person and cola in carry on bag just remember to bring a wine opener since uncorking is expensive. The crew is so helpful you get used to it and when is over you will miss them. Your steward will leave you animals made of towels each night. Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
Eurodam Cruise to Alaska – September 2-9, 2017 This was my first Alaska cruise and my first on Holland America. It was a fabulous week, and I would recommend it to anyone. Any criticisms listed below are nit-picking – nothing major, ... Read More
Eurodam Cruise to Alaska – September 2-9, 2017 This was my first Alaska cruise and my first on Holland America. It was a fabulous week, and I would recommend it to anyone. Any criticisms listed below are nit-picking – nothing major, but I’ll mention our thoughts about how some things could be improved (in my opinion, anyway). Embarkation -- couldn’t have gone any faster unless we RAN. Very organized and smooth. Our room (5065) was ready at 11:30, and from cab to cabin took about 20 minutes. There was a complimentary bottle of champagne from Costco who we booked through! I think they did this because we were celebrating our 25th anniversary. The cabin was great – lots of storage, outlets, and room to walk around. The balcony was perfect, the bed comfortable (pillows need replacing, though). My one suggestion is to put a clock in the cabin! You can get the time by turning on the TV, but that doesn’t work if your partner is still sleeping. Since cell phones don’t work at sea, my usual “clock” was useless. I was worried about being on the deck right above the lifeboats, but it was fine. They are certainly RIGHT THERE below you, but you’re usually looking out at the sea, not down. We liked being on deck 5 because there was no pool or nightclub above or below us, and it provided easy access to the bow for Glacier Bay day. We were mid-ship, and felt it was the perfect spot. We did have one bit of excitement when we got locked out on our balcony! Fortunately, our neighbors were out and called rescue for us. The staff came immediately and fixed the broken door latch. We explored the ship which is small as cruise ships go, which was perfect – I have a slight walking disability and could make it from bow to stern without too much trouble. One of the first things we came across was the Lido buffet. Now, I’m not a huge fan of buffets and this one was exactly what I expected – hectic, crowded, but the food was pretty good. Except the iced tea – yuck. Our favorite was actually the small pre-made salads in the “market” area – those were all delicious. Next we came across the Spa and were offered a tour. I definitely wanted a day pass to the spa, but after this “tour”, stayed as far away as possible. The whole thing was an attempt to sell us ridiculously expensive treatments and products. We were repeatedly told that if we didn’t book a $249 pass for the week, we wouldn’t be allowed in as they ONLY allow 40 couples access for the week. I don’t know if this is true or not, but I did not appreciate the hard sell. One of our favorite places to hang out was the Crow’s Nest. We loved the daily Trivia contest, made new friends and saw lots of whales surrounding the ship. There are plenty of nice places around the ship to sit and relax, read, stare out the windows, etc. FOOD! The best we had was in the main dining room, and our server Augustino was wonderful. I have to eat gluten-free which is a nuisance for everyone. I had a lot of trouble with servers at the Lido and other venues, but Augstino knew what I needed and took good care of me (he also made me an origami crane one night, so I have a little crush on him). The GF buns at the “Dive-In” burger bar were great, but I never got to try the pizza. Breakfast service in the MDR was spotty…one server said there was nothing I could eat but eggs, but another brought me English muffins, pancakes and waffles!! One day it took us 40 minutes to get our food, and beverage refills were hard to come by. In general, the servers were very friendly and helpful, but it would be good if they all got the same training re dietary restrictions. Actually, it would have been smarter to have a reserved table/server for every meal but we didn’t want to be tied down to that. P.S…why don’t they give you spoons on that ship?? You always have to ask for a spoon. We went to all the specialty restaurants, and would probably not spend the money to do it again. Pinnacle was wonderful but really no better than what we had in the MDR, Tamarind was pretty good, and Canaletto was….very, very average – comparable to Dennys at home. Get the signature salmon and other fish dishes in the MDR! Drinks – we did not purchase a drink package. We brought aboard one bottle of wine each, and four bottles of soda. We bought wine with dinner and white Russians in the casino at night. Also an occasional beer or soda. In total we spent around $150 on drinks, and the packages would have been around $800! I do wish there were “free” drink stations around the ship, not just in the chaotic Lido buffet area. In-room dining – we got breakfast three times and it was always great. Entertainment: All great, although we thought the comedian was offensive and his material dated and not funny. The magician was great, as were all the mainstage performers. The piano bar performers were very entertaining and talented, as were those in the “post-modern jukebox”. Re the latter…why don’t they do that in the BB King room? There was no room in the area to sit or stand, so we were forced to just orbit through and listen from the hallway around the corner. The BEST was the BB King Blues band – really incredible!! We were also brought to tears (good ones) by the Lincoln Center musicians rendition of Stairway to Heaven, and they happened to play several of my favorite classical and modern songs. We were looking forward to the kitchen tour and waited in line for an hour. However, the “tour” was just a rapid jog through the kitchen with absolutely no information or explanation of anything. A big disappointment. America’s Test Kitchen – love it. Their recipes and presentations are always fabulous. Augustino invited us to attend the crew show which was fun. Mostly we wanted to support him and the other crew who put on this late-night performance of song and dance from their native country. Casino – I wish there’d been more Blackjack tables. I also wish I’d won more often. Sigh… Shore Excursions: We booked through Costco. In Juneau we went rafting on Mendenhall lake and the river. It was rainy and cloudy, but we loved it. The rapids are mild and short-lived, so don’t be scared! Sitka – we had a very nice guide, but the tour was just a drive around town. I wasn’t feeling great and barely remember anything notable except for the Fortress of the Bear which was kind of depressing. Sorry, Sitka. Ketchikan – I wish we’d had more time here! We did the Totem Bight tour, which was great. Would have liked to do some shopping, but there was no time. Four people did not make it back to the ship – I hope they were okay. Maybe they just loved Ketchikan so much they live there now. Glacier Bay - The absolute, life-changing highlight of the trip! We had a bright, sunny day and everywhere we looked was something amazing. The best views were from our balcony, but it was fun to be on the lido deck or the bow to share the experience with everyone else. We were lucky to see the Johns Hopkins Glacier in addition to the usual ones, and the whole day was just incredible. We took over 400 pictures on that day alone. Victoria – we stayed on board as we have been to Victoria before and wanted a quiet evening and dinner at Pinnacle. Wildlife – We saw whales every day as well as porpoises. Bears on the beach on day one! Eagles, otters, seals…all the cool animals you hope to see. I’ve cruised on Princess and Carnival, and HAL is definitely a more “mature” crowd in general. Lots of walkers and wheelchairs in the aisles, but we met so many interesting people. Also, once you’re in your 50s, it’s nice to feel like the youngsters on the ship! (There were plenty of younger people and a few kids, too). So, that’s it. I have 839 pictures, so let me know if there’s something you want to see! Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
Had never been to Alaska and wanted to visit Glacier Bay. This covered a very small part of AK but got to see lots of scenery and learn Alaskan history. The day in Glacier Bay was one of the highlights. NPS Rangers did a great job. We had ... Read More
Had never been to Alaska and wanted to visit Glacier Bay. This covered a very small part of AK but got to see lots of scenery and learn Alaskan history. The day in Glacier Bay was one of the highlights. NPS Rangers did a great job. We had great weather on this day. Saw bear,goats,moose,eagles,seals even a camp site. On our stops in Juneau, Sitka and Ketchikan we visited the NPS NFS venues, these places had ranger lead talks which were very informative also movies about the area. Kendall Glacier was very crowded, however the sites in Sitka and Ketchikan were not. Would have liked more time in Victoria. Loved the Eurodam, crew were very helpful, everyone had a smile.Food was very good. Liked the MDR best as I'm partial to having someone plan and serve my meals. Ate in the Lido a couple of times. Liked that the table was set and u did not have to wander around looking for silverware. Had room service for coffee some morning. They were prompt and followed up with a phone call asking if everything was OK. Room stewards kept our rooms clean and were available for questions. Music Walk was entertaining, something for every musical taste. Saw 1 production show 1000 steps brilliant. The BBC Alaska Movie, set to music with the Lincoln Center and Eurodam musicians was Awesome, do not miss this production. Had our luggage sent straight to the airport from the ship, great. We got our boarding passes the day before and walked off the ship and spent the morning in Seattle. Got the light rail to the airport. 45 minutes $3:00 bargain. Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
Our party of six travelled to Alaska , the service and attention to detail was absolutely super. looking after us for early dining ..Galih, Riggi & Rewel, we had a wonderful trip and would certainly reccomend Holland America. Our ... Read More
Our party of six travelled to Alaska , the service and attention to detail was absolutely super. looking after us for early dining ..Galih, Riggi & Rewel, we had a wonderful trip and would certainly reccomend Holland America. Our cabin was always spotless as the cabin crew managed to look after so many passengers with a ready smile.. Entertainment and activities were enjoyed by all and each port was so easy to enjoy due to us being able to leave the ship and return without any lineups. On arrival into Seattle and our departure from the ship with the crew sending us off with a final goodbye was seamless our luggage was available immediately , we could not have asked for more. Our compliments to Irina of Avoya Travel for her attention to my family who came from Australia to join us . Many thanks for making our trip fabulous... Heather & Gerry Schaper & Howe family Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
Loved the ports. It rained every day except in Victoria but we didn't mind. Bought a rain coat.The ship is tired, furniture in Crows Nest frayed and faded, bathroom wall vinyl coming loose, grout peeling, sofa springs sprung. Most ... Read More
Loved the ports. It rained every day except in Victoria but we didn't mind. Bought a rain coat.The ship is tired, furniture in Crows Nest frayed and faded, bathroom wall vinyl coming loose, grout peeling, sofa springs sprung. Most shows overall were lame. Piano bar guy,Van, could really play the piano but couldn't sing worth a darn. The food was excellent. Loved the new salad bar on Lido. The crew was exceptional! We got laundry done on the unlimited plan and it was better than my home laundry. Breakfast in room delivered everyday on time. Someone mentioned banging and we noticed that too. Loud noises coming from the bottom of ship. I just think the Amsterdam needs a face lift. I enjoyed the cruise but the ship is definitely not up to HAL standards. Enjoy the "as you wish dining" and never had to wait for seating. The food was varied and excellent. Again, the staff was the best but the ship needs attention. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
Review of Amsterdam Alaska cruise from August 28 to September 11, 2017 We took this trip out of Seattle pier 91. The trip to and from the ship was by Link to/from Westlake Center and then Uber to/from the ship. This system works ... Read More
Review of Amsterdam Alaska cruise from August 28 to September 11, 2017 We took this trip out of Seattle pier 91. The trip to and from the ship was by Link to/from Westlake Center and then Uber to/from the ship. This system works pretty well and saves enough money to make the hassle worthwhile. The food on HAL continues to be great, much better than RCL or CEL and the service by the staff is great as well. Except for two occasions the staff was helpful and friendly. The exceptions were somewhat major because they both happened on disembarkation day when my wife fainted while getting off the ship and the two staff members I asked for help walked off and never returned. Midwesterrn self-reliance got us home though. A significant number of passengers contracted some kind of cold, sore throat, vomiting sort of disease but the ship did nothing publicly to help. I purchased some Day Quil in the ship shop for $18 and when I returned home I priced this item at Target for $8. The ship charges a markup of over 100% above retail for medicine. Smokes and liquor seem cheaper on the ship but medicine to help passengers is a rip off and that’s just not right. Passengers who visited the medical office reported similar gouging, for example, using the O2 sensor on one’s finger cost $10 each. At Target a O2 sensing unit cost $34 to own. The mini size bottle of cough medicine they issued, smaller than Day Quil was $20. Purchasing cruise insurance, even through HAL was of no use because the medical unit won’t accept it. One must file a claim with Medicare (which will deny it), then submit the claim with the secondary carrier. The weather was bad, but this is September in Alaska so that is what to expect. Tons of rain and one evening when pulling into Anchorage the ship was hit by a rogue wind of 135 MPH that was unexpected and the ship acquired a 12 degree list for 10 to 15 minutes. Fortunately, the captain had ballasted the ship as a precaution because at 27 degrees the ship falls over. Glasses, plates, bottles all went flying but I didn’t see or hear of any passenger injuries. The captain made no announcement because he didn’t want to aggravate the situation, he said. There was no announcement regarding this issue by the captain until several days later during the usual Q and A when a passenger raised it The ship had to cancel the Kodiak stop because of bad weather too. All passengers got a free glass of sparkling water or a soda as compensation. That’s not much but that’s cruising for you. The floor in our bathroom and shower was in terrible condition because most of the grout was missing. This has permitted water to seep underneath the tile and it has bubbled up creating an uneven service. Also bits of grout continue to break off and stick to one’s feet. The port of Seattle has a great free service called Pier Valet which we used and it went surprisingly well. The way it works is that a passenger can complete the forms on board and the port will pick up your luggage on the last night of the cruise, just like the ship does. Pier Valet then delivers the luggage to the airline and one picks it up again at the destination airport. Really! The only snag was that the boarding pass issued and delivered to the cabin won’t scan at TSA security check. Please stop at your airline kiosk when arriving at SEA and get a new boarding pass first We will continue to cruise with HAL but not to Alaska for a while. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
Very good itinerary. We had awful weather and one port eliminated. Very little activity on ship. Minimal trivia and no games such as liars club. Only one show in the evening plus lounge acts. Lounge acts were not very good. When ... Read More
Very good itinerary. We had awful weather and one port eliminated. Very little activity on ship. Minimal trivia and no games such as liars club. Only one show in the evening plus lounge acts. Lounge acts were not very good. When asked if the ship would add a knitting group to activities, I was told it did "not fit the image of HAL". After a number of requests it was finally added, probably by the activities director, not cruise director. Had up to a dozen attend, at no cost to HAL. Pickle ball court. Best food we have had on a ship. Lots of places to sit during the day and read. A real smoke problem in the lounges near the casino. Very poor ventilation. The ship singers and dancers were some of the best we have seen on a cruise. 4 review shows. Show every night including the last night. A very old croud. Very few under 50, lots of walkers and scooters. Staff wonderful and helped get food for people who needed help in lido restaurant. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
This was an offer we couldn't refuse! Have been to Alaska before and It's been a long time since traveling on HAL but we got an incredible offer. Usually travel with NCL and have been on all the major lines.. But this was ... Read More
This was an offer we couldn't refuse! Have been to Alaska before and It's been a long time since traveling on HAL but we got an incredible offer. Usually travel with NCL and have been on all the major lines.. But this was a great trip. I saw complaints that ship was old, but it was actually very nice. Ship was clean! Restrooms were always clean! Cabin was spotless! Eating areas were clean! Food in dining room was very good, even lobster and king crab which you don't get on NCL any more. And, if you wanted more, just ask. Buffet was like any buffet, a buffet is a buffet is a buffett. Did enjoy hamburger eatery on pool deck. Made fresh while you wait. And wait was maybe 3 mins. No upselling constantly like on many ships which was nice. No constant barmen trying to push drinks. Shows were just OK in my opinion, but they were crowded every nite. Small casino with friendly personnel. Boarding and debarkation smooth, no hassle, but only 1400 guests. Havent been on a ship that small in a long time so it was a pleasure. Had room Neptune Suite 7010 which was perfect. Hosts were wonderful. Always ready to help. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
I love Alaska and its beautiful scenery, people and wildlife. The more days cruising is a definite plus for me. A little different itinerary going to Icy Strait Point, Homer, and Kodiak. Unfortunately we did not get to Kodiak because of ... Read More
I love Alaska and its beautiful scenery, people and wildlife. The more days cruising is a definite plus for me. A little different itinerary going to Icy Strait Point, Homer, and Kodiak. Unfortunately we did not get to Kodiak because of weather. That was okay since I will just have to do the cruise again another time. The weather in Alaska is definitely not the norm, and you just have to go with the flow. The captain is the man who knows best. Captain Jonathan is the greatest! The weather did not stop us from going on tours or just going out on our own. The food in the dining room and lunch at the Pinnacle was great. Breakfast in the Lido was very good. Piano Man Van was entertaining and played to the crowd. The entertainment was good, especially Hyperion Wright, who was excellent. The comedian Paul Morrisey(??) was awful. Liked seeing the 6 dancers actually dancing. The cruise director, Jorge, was not very visible, and there were not many activities other than trivia a few times a day. Would love to have had music during the happy hours. Music was played after happy hours were over. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
I was just on the World Voyage with Holland. Things were different on the Alaskan cruise, subtle little things that were lacking. But Hollands staff is wonderful. Some of the passengers were annoyed that Captain Mercer made the decision ... Read More
I was just on the World Voyage with Holland. Things were different on the Alaskan cruise, subtle little things that were lacking. But Hollands staff is wonderful. Some of the passengers were annoyed that Captain Mercer made the decision to by pass Kodiak due to the storm, but it was a GREAT decision. Some things are to be considered UPGRADES during a GRAND VOYAGE. Cruises are the least expensive way to take a vacation. Have been cruising since I was a child in the 1950's so well understand that in today's market, with the number of Shipping Companies, and the number of ships, the prices are low. Although people who are new to cruising do not think so but it is true. Where else can one go visit different cities, receive entertainment, food, lodging and have fun at such a low price. Now with the hurricane damaged islands, it will be worse for the Cruise lines. I love cruising and Holland is one of my favorites. The Alaskan cruise is always a great one and the 14 day is exceptional. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
Whilst not the best weather for Alaska scenery viewing, the warmth and friendliness of the crew on MS Amsterdam certainly made up for the weather. We had extremely wet weather, but as it is Alaska, and mostly a temperate rain forest, ... Read More
Whilst not the best weather for Alaska scenery viewing, the warmth and friendliness of the crew on MS Amsterdam certainly made up for the weather. We had extremely wet weather, but as it is Alaska, and mostly a temperate rain forest, what did I expect? Possibly cruise in an earlier month in future? However, we did manage to see lots of whales in Juneau, a Sitka black tailed deer, a brown bear and a red squirrel in Icy Straight Point, sea otters, seals, lots of salmon, and bald eagles in Ketchikan, so a success in our view! The ship is small but perfectly formed! It doesn't take long to get to where you need to be. There are 2 laundry rooms, at $2 including wash soap, conveniently situated on decks 3 and 6. There are several lounges which are nicely appointed and very comfortable. The Crow's Nest in particular has wonderful views, and great for a pre dinner drink! Amsterdam's best feature, however, the Lido Swimming pool area. It has a large retractable roof, which in the wet, ensures the warmth needed to take a dip in the very warm pool, or a pleasant drink at the bar! We had an inside cabin, which was very good. Aft position, and whilst it stated it could be noisy during the day, it was actually very quiet. Stewards were excellent. The evening entertainment wasn't to my liking, however the Amsterdam singers and dancers were excellent. We only did 2 ship's excursions - in Icy Straight and the Seattle tour transfer to airport. Both were good, if a little expensive. An excellent cruise! Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
We did the Alaska route. The ship looked dated inside. We booked a Neptune Suite - and that included the use of the Neptune lounge and concierge for help on all dining reservations, excursions, questions etc. The staff and lounge were ... Read More
We did the Alaska route. The ship looked dated inside. We booked a Neptune Suite - and that included the use of the Neptune lounge and concierge for help on all dining reservations, excursions, questions etc. The staff and lounge were great! They always had breakfast, snacks and drinks available - this was great on embarkation and disembarkation day to avoid the crowds in the lido market. Highlights were - the suite, the specialty dining at Pinnacle Grill (go twice if you can - really a nice menu and the quality and service shine!) Also having a Neptune suite gives you the option of having breakfast there at no surcharge. The biggest highlight was dinner at the specialty restaurant "Rudi's" The Pinnacle Grill is transformed on one night to this dinning experience. The menu is wonderful, extra perks like chef complimentary appetizer bites, dipped strawberries presented in a candelabra holder, and truffle bites along with whatever else you order. I opted for recommended dover sole which came tableside to be filleted and plated. So delicious! Pro-tip - DONT MISS dinner at Rudi's on the only night it is offered. Disappointments: Lack of onboard entertainment for sea days. Not enough variety or choices. Main dining room and Canelleto restaurant - not impressed with food choices or quality. Evening entertainment - average. The comedian we had was pretty good though. Production numbers by ship dancers - average - the lead blonde female singer on both performances - noticeably off key. And I wasn't the only one who mentioned this. I heard others around us mention this too. Oh.. one other thing not to miss. Go to the Dive Bar and get the burger and fries. Honestly, the fries were frigging amazing! lol I read this on some other blog and so my roommate and I sought them out - they did not disappoint! lol super crispy and addicting! - get the dive sauce to go with them! The spa services were ok. Overpriced as they are on all ships, but the size of the relaxation rooms with heated stone beds were too few and filled up quickly - hard to snag one on a couple of occasions. The stops in Ketchikan and Victoria were too short - only a few hours. If given the option to pick a next cruise, I would probably go with Celebrity (still my favorite line so far after 16 cruises over the years) but all in all it was fine - just not stand out great. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
We were on the Oosterdam last October for a Mediterranean Cruise and were very happy. When we booked this Alaska Cruise, we were thrilled to be on Oosterdam again. The staff, cabin stewards, food servers were wonderful and very helpful. ... Read More
We were on the Oosterdam last October for a Mediterranean Cruise and were very happy. When we booked this Alaska Cruise, we were thrilled to be on Oosterdam again. The staff, cabin stewards, food servers were wonderful and very helpful. We enjoyed the Lido Market and all the choices. We had our eleven year old grandson with us and he loved the ship and the Lido Market and the pool. He was in awe. Our grandson went to the Kids Club. He was in the 7-12 group, however, they seemed to group together the much younger kids with the older group. Most of the time, he enjoyed it. The food in the Dining Room had very small portions... not as I remembered. Entertainment was fabulous . I did not get a chance to take advantage of most the daytime activities this time. We enjoyed the Shore excursions and would definitely cruise on Holland America again. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
We are regular cruisers with HAL. Our Cruise Consultant is excellent! She keeps notes, always remembers special details about us and our preferences. That makes a big difference - if you like to sleep in, stay up late, etc. These ... Read More
We are regular cruisers with HAL. Our Cruise Consultant is excellent! She keeps notes, always remembers special details about us and our preferences. That makes a big difference - if you like to sleep in, stay up late, etc. These little things are what make your trip. Our recent trip on Oosterdam was just amazing. The staff was outstanding, the food was excellent, the dining room at lunch allowed you to enjoy quick OR long lunches. The dining room was impeccable. Each night was excellent: Snapper, Halibut, Steak, LARGE Shrimp, Lobster, more Steak, Rack of Lamb, 8 hour slow roasted Lamb Shank, and much more. The service was impeccable. Our servers were Ari & Aji. They are a great team. We love the easy, relaxing pace of this cruise. You can have action packed days at port and enjoy the much needed pampering at sea. Our room steward was amazing (Tegru). He kept our room immaculate, but we rarely saw him. This cruise has a great itinerary. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
It was an educational cruise to get ce credit for my dental license. THE SHIP WAS SMALL NOT MUCH TO DO ON THE CRUISE ( IT WAS TO ALASKA ) NO GOOD VENUES ON THE CRUISE WI FI EXPENSIVE AND SPOTTY IN ROOM TV AWFUL BAD BAD ... Read More
It was an educational cruise to get ce credit for my dental license. THE SHIP WAS SMALL NOT MUCH TO DO ON THE CRUISE ( IT WAS TO ALASKA ) NO GOOD VENUES ON THE CRUISE WI FI EXPENSIVE AND SPOTTY IN ROOM TV AWFUL BAD BAD FOOD POISONING FROM THE BUFFET ON THE 2ND DAY I LEARNED ANY PACIFIC CRUISES ARE ALWAYS ROCKY ( LEARNED FROM OTHER CRUISERS ON THE SHIP ) I HAD CRUISED TO BERMUDA AND CARIB ONLY IN THE PAST NEVER AGAIN HAL NEVER AGAIN PACIFIC CRUISES ALWAYS DO MUCH MORE RESEARCH ON THE SHIP ( I DIDNT DO THAT ) I WROTE THEM AND THEY OFFERED 300 OFF ANOTHER CRUISE I WILL NEVER SAIL ON HAL AGAIN Be warned the cruise was at the end of august and it was very cold, grey and rainy.....terrible time in so so many ways...also off ship excursions were terribly expensive!!! Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
We've cruised with HAL before and liked it just as much as Princess. We weren't disappointed this time, either. Loved our cabins (6105, 6107, 6109), cabin stewards, dining table servers (table 95) and the Lido buffet. We had ... Read More
We've cruised with HAL before and liked it just as much as Princess. We weren't disappointed this time, either. Loved our cabins (6105, 6107, 6109), cabin stewards, dining table servers (table 95) and the Lido buffet. We had plenty to eat at all times. Loved the burgers and cheesy fries at Dive In and the guys and teens loved the pizza by the pool. The others in our group ordered from In-Room Dining and said it was great. Loved our cabin location and balconies. This was my third cruise to Alaska (first two were on Royal Caribbean). This was my first time to Sitka. I wasn't that impressed and really missed Skagway! I know a lot of people love Sitka, though! We did like the malts at Harry Race Pharmacy. :-) I absolutely love the Salmon Bake excursion in Juneau and have been there three times. It is relaxing and such a beautiful setting. This time we found a table next to the river and loved hearing it, loved the waterfall (it's been my screen saver for years!) and watching the salmon trying to make it upstream. We always go to Frontier Shipping in Ketchikan to ship our purchased souvenirs home. It's worth the short (free) bus trip to the little mall to not have to worry about having enough room in our suitcases when we pack to head home. We loved the free luggage service and didn't have to worry about finding our luggage after we disembarked. We were able to walk off the ship with our carry-on, catch our reserved shuttle and make it to the airport by a little before 9am to catch our 11am flight. Our luggage appeared like magic at the KCMO airport when we arrived. It rained off and on throughout. No big deal. The $.99 ponchos we took along were great and nothing stopped us from our Alaskan adventure. Saw a bunch of whales and cute otters and seals, a few bald eagles and a couple of bears on a beach. YAY!! Another awesome Alaskan cruise. Can't wait to go back!! Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
I've done Alaska with HAL once before in 2011 on the Oosterdam and had a great time, this time on the Eurodam was even better!! My parents, husband, in-laws, and I flew into Seattle Thursday night and stayed in a very nice town home I ... Read More
I've done Alaska with HAL once before in 2011 on the Oosterdam and had a great time, this time on the Eurodam was even better!! My parents, husband, in-laws, and I flew into Seattle Thursday night and stayed in a very nice town home I found through AirBnB. Spent Friday exploring Seattle, and that evening we took a ferry to Alki Beach and ate at Salty's, this restaurant has a beautiful view of Seattle, and the food was outstanding. We boarded the ship Saturday morning with ease. The first night on the ship was a little difficult to sleep because our room (1092) was above the ship's steam room. I tried to sleep through the random noises but it was very difficult. After talking to Guest Services about the issue, someone came to our room and offered a different ocean-view room on the other side of the ship, and mentioned the number of room complaints they've had on every sailing. So just as a warning, ocean-view stateroom 1092 and surrounding rooms (it gets louder as you get closer to Guest Services) are directly over the steam room! Our room steward informed us that there are modifications planned during the next dry dock. So we were moved to 1066 and slept in utter bliss for the remainder of the cruise (some faint noise from B.B. King Lounge, but didn't bother us.) Both embarkation and disembarkation went smoothly and quickly, they've got everything down to a science. The highlight of this Alaskan itinerary is definitely cruising through Glacier Bay National Park, a team of park rangers actually catch up to the ship in a small boat and climb up a ladder to spend the day talking about the beautiful scenery and help us spot wildlife. We spent most of the day in the Crow's Nest with binoculars and camera ready to go, saw some mountain goats and a black bear, and then moved to the bow on deck 5 when we got to Margerie Glacier. Then had lunch on the Lido and back to our room where we passed an island full of seals. The park rangers were off the boat by 5pm. Cruising through Glacier Bay was an amazing experience. I was only 22 the first time I did this cruise and I don't really remember much of this day. I'm so glad I got to experience it a second time. Make sure to bring binoculars, you will be so glad you did! The highlight of this ship is definitely the Music Walk on deck 2! As soon as you walk out of the Mainstage theatre, you walk into the casino (SMOKE FREE!) where you'll also find the Billboard Bar with the dueling pianos, these people are so talented; taking requests and wowing everybody with their skills. Walk a little further and you'll find the B.B. King Lounge, with a very lively band playing all sorts of 70s funk and disco. And a little further after that, you'll run into the Lincoln Stage Center where you will be mesmerized by a string and piano quintet. All the artists performing on all platforms are impressively talented. Good job HAL on this very entertaining and classy setup! My husband and I are big believers in thermal suite packages! This ship has a nice hydro-pool and a room of mosaic heated lounges and saunas with quite a view. We spent at least 45 minutes every day using the spa amenities. ($250/couple, the relaxation is worth it!) The crew on this ship was amazing, I mean seriously, they were just as great as could be, we were so impressed and appreciative. And the food in the Lido Market and MDR was DELICIOUS. Overall, this is the best cruise I've taken so far, although this is only my 4th cruise, and I've only sailed with HAL and NCL. I'm confident that it will keep that title for a while! Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
Our cabin was luxurious, the food exceptional, and the scenery awesome. Service by all staff was A++ and that is what made the week so memorable. We didn't want to leave. We chose this cruise for the scenery, so were very ... Read More
Our cabin was luxurious, the food exceptional, and the scenery awesome. Service by all staff was A++ and that is what made the week so memorable. We didn't want to leave. We chose this cruise for the scenery, so were very satisfied with going through the buffet for meals. Not only was the food delicious and varied each meal, we usually were able to sit near a window. A whale with breakfast? Check. I think our favorite meal was the roast beef. They did it perfectly. Don't miss the trout. That was pretty good, too! Breakfast offered the usual, but I thought the freshly made crepes and waffles were a special treat. Just being able to wander down the line, pick what looks interesting and eat it was a true luxury for this mom. They offered separate burger and pizza places that made to order. Both were worth a wait in line. The highlight of the cruise for us was getting up close to the glaciers. What a thrill! How nice to have National Park Rangers join us to explain what we were seeing. On the way we saw mountain goats, bears, puffins, gulls, and sea otters. Quite an exciting day. We also enjoyed exploring the ports. We chose city tour excursions since we had a limited time frame in each place. We especially enjoyed the guides who were native Alaskans.There was usually enough time left after the guided tour for us to then explore sites we where we wanted more time. This cruise provided luxury, relaxation, and a wonderful way to experience a very wild place. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
Our first cruise: we live in Seattle so very convenient departure of course. We went with our adult children for a 7 day including Sitka and Glacier bay. I'm not too into a lot of what cruise ships offer such as gambling, drinking, ... Read More
Our first cruise: we live in Seattle so very convenient departure of course. We went with our adult children for a 7 day including Sitka and Glacier bay. I'm not too into a lot of what cruise ships offer such as gambling, drinking, kind of cheesy entertainment and constant eating. But we enjoyed it a lot; it's a great family vacation because the kids could do stuff on their own and so could we and we could also come together a lot. We rented 2 cabins and they had their own. I would say the cruise into Glacier bay and the excursions make the cruise. In Sitka, we walked around ourselves while the kids did adventures because HA is the only cruise ship in port but in Juneau and Ketchikan 4 cruise ships are in the same day and if you don't go on excursions it is just an enormous amount of people being disgorged in a small place and lot of souvenir and jewelry shops. We had a verandah cabin which all in all, was worth the cost although the way up was so cloudy we couldn't see land. The kids had an interior cabin which was fine for them. The food was somewhat uneven, some great, some sub par. I preferred the MDR to the Lido deck not because of the food but the Lido was so noisy and lines were long and somewhat slow. Room service was great. Staff was great. Dive in hamburger counter was very good if you like burgers; Pizza was OK. We didn't go to the extra @ dining room options. I also enjoyed the Crow's nest which was like a coffee shop area; you paid extra but it wasn't much, like $2.50 for a double shot espresso. My son enjoyed the fitness center and my daughter the spa. The BB king club's band was very good; check them out! The classical music is also quite good. As for excursions, we enjoyed very much whale watching in Juneau, my kids did a strenuous glacier hike (it was listed a strenuous but my son found it moderate) and dog mushing which they both liked a lot. Salmon bake we all did which was a little disappointing as they overcooked the salmon some (a very common problem!). In Sitka, kids did 4x4 safari and pedal and brew which they liked and we walked around historical Sitka which, if you have that interest, was great. I preferred being on our own to going with a big group. In Ketchikan, we did Lumberjack; this was OK; pretty short and kind of cheesy but still fun and then the crab feast; the crab was incredible; if you are a crab fan, recommend. The kids did zipline which was scary but fun for them. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
We have taken Holland America and Disney to Alaska several times. This is not my favorite Holland American Cruise.. some great moments but the service was not as good as we had on the Westerdam 4 years ago and saw a lot of cuts in what ... Read More
We have taken Holland America and Disney to Alaska several times. This is not my favorite Holland American Cruise.. some great moments but the service was not as good as we had on the Westerdam 4 years ago and saw a lot of cuts in what was provided. Lincoln Center Stage was amazing with 4 lovely ladies playing strings and a great pianist and arranger. The Pinnacle Grill had good food but poor service. We had several times scheduled and cancelled after 2. The food was superb in all of the venues. The entertainment was average... a couple of good venues, but missed the intimate piano bar. Beautiful flower arrangements and ice sculptures were gone. Cabin steward was hit and miss... asked for ice each night, sometimes we got it. Missed one cleaning.. asked to keep fruit bowl full.. didn't happen.. and the room never seemed completely clean. Service in the dining room was good except for one area where we had to ask for everything 3 or 4 times. We just refused to eat in that area again. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
Our intent on this trip was to have a relaxing time on board ship while seeing Alaska. We had been told that Holland America is a notch above the competition, but found that it didn't come close to other cruise lines. We actually had ... Read More
Our intent on this trip was to have a relaxing time on board ship while seeing Alaska. We had been told that Holland America is a notch above the competition, but found that it didn't come close to other cruise lines. We actually had a horrible experience. There was a major problem with the heating and cooling unit in our cabin. They tried 3 times to adjust the temperature, but our room remained hot, making sleep difficult. We would wake up sweating. We asked for a fan, but they said none were available. We repeatedly asked that they fix it but the gal at the desk continued to blow us off, saying they were already in there several times to fix it, as if it was our problem. Finally, with 2 nights left we were both sick, and I insisted we have a fan. Finally our dear housekeeper brought us one which was taken out of an office. Two and a half weeks later we are still sick with a respiratory virus. Also, my husband uses a Cpap machine which has a filter. After 2 weeks on the ship the filter was black. At home he changes it once a month and it's always light gray. That says something about the ventilator. We will never go on Holland America again. Our once in a lifetime trip to Alaska was ruined. We always look forward to the food on a cruise, but we found the dining room meals to be very salty and underwhelming. However, a need for a medically necessary gluten free diet was met by the very conscientious staff. The staff in the dining areas were wonderful. Most of the entertainment we saw was excellent, but there were a couple performers who were crude and disrespectful. If I was grading this cruise experience I would have to give it an F. The positive features couldn't compensate for our horrible cabin experience and our lengthy illness from it. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
We chose this cruise because it was 14 days. The staff was very friendly and attentive. We were surprised by the lack of electrical outlets in our cabin. There was one outlet for the refrigerator, curling iron, electric toothbrush, ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it was 14 days. The staff was very friendly and attentive. We were surprised by the lack of electrical outlets in our cabin. There was one outlet for the refrigerator, curling iron, electric toothbrush, phone, etc. We were able to use a ship multi plug, but it shouldn't have been necessary. We did enjoy the larger tub/shower combination. The entertainment was very good. The ship singers and dancers were excellent. Our waiter and assistant were very caring, but they had an area which included 24 passengers. Way too many for a single team. We enjoyed Endicott Arm and Dawes glacier. We had not seen them before. I was disappointed in the ship atrium, it did not have the open spacious feeling of most ship atriums. We enjoyed the in room DVD and the ability to borrow films to enjoy in our room. I also loved the Americas Test Kitchen demos. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
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