8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 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
4 Helpful Votes
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
2 Helpful Votes
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
2 Helpful Votes
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
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2017
It was special offer to us. Enjoyed the whole trip. Would love to go again. Lots of ports. Plenty of excursions to choose from. We loved the gold panning excursion and the whale watching one. I loved the dog sled excursion. The indian ... Read More
It was special offer to us. Enjoyed the whole trip. Would love to go again. Lots of ports. Plenty of excursions to choose from. We loved the gold panning excursion and the whale watching one. I loved the dog sled excursion. The indian excursions were very interesting too.The entertainment was very good. Food was very good. The cabin was just right for us. The casino( husband 's favorite) was great. Had some no smoking in it. We had help when we needed it from all the workers. Loved the fact the capitain could get close to the glaciers for us to see too. The service was great.If we needed anything they got it for us. The ship was a good size. Not too big and not so many people. All in all best 2 weeks we've had. It is a good trip for older children too. Lots for them to see and learn. 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
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
Boarding and disembarkation were very smooth, and I especially loved the complimentary, hands free luggage check-in on the return trip home. After leaving my luggage outside our cabin, I didn't see it again until it arrived at my ... Read More
Boarding and disembarkation were very smooth, and I especially loved the complimentary, hands free luggage check-in on the return trip home. After leaving my luggage outside our cabin, I didn't see it again until it arrived at my final destination. The Polynesian staff was as friendly as could be. I loved all the ports we stopped at, except for Kodiak, for which I would have to recommend you either stay on the ship, or take an excursion which gets you out of that ugly town the ship docks at. Loved the Crow's Nest for it's great view and happy hour, and met a lot of very nice people both there, in the dining areas, and on excursions. The type of people on this 2 week cruise were mostly over 60, and lots of retired people who do 3+ cruises a year. Not the best cruise to bring your kids on for diverse entertainment as there seemed to be very few children onboard. This was my third cruise to Alaska, and I probably would not have chosen to do a third cruise, but this one went to 3 places we haven't been to before, and I liked the 2 weeks, instead of the usual 1 week. Service on the ship was excellent and I have no complaints about the food, except that the coffee was always way too strong. Our balcony cabin was in a perfect location on deck 6. The ship is old, but has a very nice floor design and is kept very clean. I did see quite a few rust spots which would drive me crazy if she were my ship, but she is scheduled for some major dry dock work in March'2018. I loved the fact that there were little more than 1000 passengers on this ship, which means you get to see many of the people you meet over and over again which enhances the social experience and develops friendships. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
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
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
Holland America Alaskan Explorer August 14 - 28, 2017 We have always wanted to do the lesser known Alaskan ports so this cruise itinerary was perfect for us. We have been on 3 previous Alaska cruises that did the regular ... Read More
Holland America Alaskan Explorer August 14 - 28, 2017 We have always wanted to do the lesser known Alaskan ports so this cruise itinerary was perfect for us. We have been on 3 previous Alaska cruises that did the regular Ketchican, Juneau, Skagway itinerary. We had been on the Amsterdam before. We really like it. Not too big and not too small. It is well maintained in spite of it's age. We had a cabin on the lower promenade deck. These cabins have the walking deck in front of your window. During the day people can not see inside your cabin. At night, however, you need to make sure your curtains are closed as anyone walking by can see inside clearly. During our visits to the glaciers people would crowd onto the deck so seeing out the window was difficult. We did really like the location of our cabin. It was such a tiny cabin. The two of us couldn't fit in the hallway and dress at the same time. The bed took up the whole room. Our weather for this cruise was truly yucky. I expect rain in Ketichican and Juneau, however, it was rainy in nearly every port. It was getting down right depressing. It was so socked in with low clouds we couldn't even see any Alaskan mountains. Homer was overcast but no rain. Victoria was a picture perfect day, not a cloud in the sky. Everyplace else it rained. However, we packed our raincoats and umbrellas and went out and explored anyway. Sitting outside on this cruise was impossible as it was just too cold. We were able to sit out on the promenade deck in Seattle and Victoria. These were the only days that were warm enough. We booked this cruise short notice. We were on a camping trip along the Oregon coast and thought we would take this cruise since it was such a good price and we were in the vicinity. Since we were on a camping trip we had no formal wear. We were not able to eat in the dining room because of this. We were very happy eating in the buffet every day. The food was wonderful. We loved being able to have lobster in the buffet on lobster night. Entertainment was very good. The production shows were great. Other nights we had a juggler a comedian and a magician who I enjoyed. I didn't really enjoy the pianist, violinist and John Denver entertainers. They were very talented just not my cup of tea. I was very disappointed to find that several things were cancelled due to the new Oprah collaboration. No more crafts, no more dancing with the stars, no more ball room dancing lessons. We only had two game shows on this cruise. Liar Liar and Majority rules. We had no special speakers. I attended the art auctions just for something to do. I was so bored on this cruise. I read 5 books. My husband read 9. There was just not enough to do during the day. It is my opinion they need to stop this new Oprah collaboration as it takes away from the Holland America product. We purchased an internet plan of 1000 minutes for $250. Yes it is expensive but we are addicted to internet. We did no ship excursions. We couldn't afford any. They were extremely over priced. We booked tours independently in port. In Ketichcan we docked right in town. We walked around a bit and then went to the lumberjack show. This show was so much fun. It was nice because the seating area was covered and heated. In Juneau we just walked around town and stopped for a drink at a restaurant and watched the float planes come and go. It was pouring rain but we still had fun. Icy straight point was a bust for us. We took a $5 shuttle into town to find everything was closed. Not that there was anything in that town to see or do. The port area was just okay with a store, restaurant and nature trail. Instead of doing Tracy arm we did Endecot arm. This was a wonderful decision the captain made. We were able to go to the very end of the arm and see the Dawes Glacier. We did Tracy arm on previous cruises and were never able to make it to the Glacier so this change in the itinerary was very welcome. We had two boring days at sea to get to Anchorage. In Anchorage there was a free shuttle to get into town. In town we were able to book a tour of the area for only $20 per person. It was a great tour. We then walked around town and shopped a bit before taking the free shuttle back to the ship. Homer was a great day. We booked a hop on hop off bus tour for $15 per person. Homer is pretty big and it offered several stops. One stop was the beach. The hop on hop off was on a school bus. I had not been on a school bus for 30 years. I had a hard time getting up the steps and the seats were small and hard, however, we endured. Kodiak wasn't fun. We took a free shuttle into town but we found no tours to book and nothing to do. Not even any soveniar shops. We walked around the port area and looked at the different boats but that was it. We had another day at sea and arrived at Hubbard Glacier late the next afternoon. I find Hubbard Glacier to be much better than Glacier bay. It growled and I saw it claving several times. Sitka was a lovely stop. It rained again but it was such a nice city. We didn't do a tour here but the city has such lovely trails along the water. We found a bridge over a river that was filled with Salmon. It also had a fish latter that we had fun watching. We did a lot of walking this day. Sailaway was especially nice with all the islands around. We had another day at sea to get to Victoria and arrived at 1pm the next day. There was a $10 per person shuttle to town. Some people walked but it was quite a long way. It was a gorgeous day not a cloud in the sky. We booked a hop on hop off tour right in front of the Empress hotel. We never did hop off anywhere but enjoyed seeing this beautiful city. There was a lovely gift shop back at the port. We left at 11pm and never even felt the ship move. The seas on this trip were very calm. In fact I missed being rocked to sleep at night due to the lack of the motion of the ocean. This ship has a covered pool area but it was always wet in there due to condensation. I hated walking across this deck as it was always wet and slippery. I had a nice massage at the spa. I was asked to buy things as usual but it was not a hard sell. One no is all it took. Had a very nice Q and A with the dancers and singers. Lots of good information. A very nice Q and A with the captain. He was open and honest. I enjoyed these very much. There is no such thing as a bad cruise so we enjoyed this cruise, however, we decided we like warm weather cruises better than cold weather cruises. Read Less
Amsterdam Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 0.0
Dining 4.0 0.0
Entertainment 4.0 0.0
Public Rooms 4.0 0.0
Fitness Recreation 4.0 0.0
Family 3.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 4.0 0.0
Enrichment 4.0 0.0
Service 4.0 0.0
Value For Money 4.0 0.0
Rates 4.0 0.0

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