Alaskan Adventure: Volendam Cruise Review by opusmartin

Volendam 5
Member Since 2012

Overall Member Rating

Alaskan Adventure

Sail Date: August 2012
Destination: Alaska
Embarkation: Vancouver
Just got off the Volendam Inside Passage Alaskan Cruise - Very impressed with the experience! If you want a NICE spacious room the deluxe verandah suite is amazing. The layout is so efficient. The dressing room area was GREAT, the bathroom is standard really, but the overall room just makes up for the standard bath/shower. The balcony AMAZING AND HUGE! Great table and chairs, chaise lounges. We often had 3 other couples over for wine and cheese, even dinner or lunch because the views were so pretty we didn't want to miss them sitting in a dining room or lido deck with crowds. If you have the money to get the deluxe suite, DO IT. The neptune lounge is well worth the dollars because of the amazing service. You never have to go to the front desk, the neptune lounge attendants cater to your every needs! The coffee machine alone was great every morning. They offer breakfast items , snacks all day and you can order from the main dining room menu breakfast, lunch and dinner the whole cruise. More Do tea service during a day at sea- really good. The only complaint about our room was the lido deck is over head and you can hear people move tables and chairs often - it was a pain, but the service and room were so good I just drank more wine and looked for whales and bears! Our friends had the penthouse and they complained about vibrations at night when crusing. But their room was superb.
The captain Peter Bos is BIG into wildlife so if you want to see animals, this is YOUR cruise. He also got close to the shore often and made the cruise so much better. If you luck out and get christine in the neptune lounge, you are set. The inside passage was wonderful if you like days at sea. We saw many whales, orca, bear,eagles all from our balcony! Juneau was great to whale watch, buy that excursion! You can also get one at port that puts you in a small boat wtih only 6 people, our friends did this and had a great review. we took a taxi to mendenhall glacier and hiked to the waterfall and watched salmon, great park! don't do a tour, go on your own! Tracys Crab Shack by boat was GREAT for king crab legs outside - do it! In my opinion shop in Skagway, the broadway street is fun and some nice shops for soapstone sculptures, fun hats, knives, hoody sweatshirts - all good prices! The White Pass Rail train ride is really nice for great views, but the tour packages where you ride a bus back stopping at "gold rush" towns is cheesy! just ride up and back and save yourself the cheese show - unless you have kids. I wish they offered a more adult train tour! I'm only 40, and was not impressed with the gold dredge stop at all. If you do have kids, then it would be fun for them. Red Onion saloon was a fun stop before heading back to the boat,k and you have a great photo op coming back to the boat in skagway with th e boat in the background to take yourself! Photos on board are 40 per sheet, kinda pricey in my opinion for one pose, but I did buy a couple. Ketchikan, it rained there on us, but we did the fishing camp experience which we really enjoyed and thankfully they provided us with rubber bibs, boots, jackets so the rain was no big deal If you want a REAL fishing exhibition, this is NOT for you, you only fish for rock fish, kinda cheesy, but the camp they take you to is worth the money. It's on an island in the wilderness and just awesome to experience the location and campfire and lunch they make you. while on our skiff we had orca come toward our boat fishing for the same rock fish we were catching so that was way amazing! Also fed an eagle some smaller fish so the lack of salmon and halibut fishing really didn't matter to me. Glacier Bay was very relaxing - We really wanted to get right back on the ship and go again, I am alreayd saving to go again and do a 14 day or 7 day with land trip to denali.
I would suggest Holland America find better talent for the music in the bars - the folks playing were not that great and you never really saw crowds gathering - i was told Holland were older folks, but really the people we met on board were wonderful and fun and all ages. They just needed some talent to entertaint them! The food was really really good I will say! We ate the Pinnacle and main dining room a couple times, always impressed. We usually ordered the main dining room menu to our balcony! Food delivered was always hot! The photographers did manage to piss me off as when I was looking at my photos the last night, some rude boy named Adam followed me around like I wanted to steal one! If you want to party at night, this is NOT a cruise for you, FYI. we enjoyed having our friends over to our balcony and did our own party with wine! PS! If you need some wine, go to the liquor store in Vancouver ride across from the Port , great wines and champagnes available! The wine list on board is also very good! Service overall was BEST I
've experience ever on a cruise. Bon voyage!
Oh! don't do the yoga, a total rip off, the insturctor was terrible and you do the class in the main gym, no private room for classes. my main complaint really! Less

Published 08/20/12

Cabin review: SA7014 Neptune Suite with Verandah

Deluxe Verandah Suites on volendam and GREAT. Very well thought out and spacious with lots of storage. the bathroom is just a bathroom - but you have a nice dressing room to make up for the standard bath. The balcony is just amazing with a nice table and four chairs and 2 chaise lounges, we entertained 8 adults with tons of space to whale watch and drink wine! Bedding is GREAT, lots of pillows and ask for extra mattress pad/egg crate to make more comfortable where the twin beds meet. The couch and sitting area really nice! Wet bar area, and closets galore. Really enjoyed the room! one thing to consider, the lido deck is above 7014, so you do hear chairs moving around lots if you can handle that - it was annoying at times.

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