Bucket list cruise including Australia and New Zealand. We arrived in Sydney a week early so we could explore a bit of Australia before the cruise and we truly enjoyed every day. We spent most of our time in Sydney, but did take a train to The Blue Mountains to visit friends who live in that beautiful area. Our hotel was on Darling Harbour (PARKROYAL Darling Harbour....Club room was quite nice and the Club Room was great for food, beverages all day long) and we certainly were glad we chose that area as it was convenient walking distance to so many places. We boarded the Noordam in Sydney for our 14-15 day cruise around New Zealand and what a beautiful cruise it was!! The weather was perfect and the views were amazing We booked a lot of independent tours in NZ and each and every licensed tour guide was professional and we had such great tours of this beautiful country!. Although we have cruised on HAL before, this was our first experience on the Noordam and that class of ship, we've always had the larger, newer ships. All in all, the Noordam was in good condition and the Signature Suite we booked was well worth the cost because this was a lengthy trans-pacific repositioning cruise. After our New Zealand portion we returned to Sydney for the day and then embarked on the Island hopping to Vancouver, Canada. Honestly, some of the islands were simply not that interesting at all, but we did have some good experiences. Of course, Hawaii was delightful but by then, we had had enough of shipboard life and wished we had chosen to disembark in Honolulu as quite a few others had chosen that option. The food onboard the Noordam was quite good overall, the entertainment was better than we expected but the piano bar was disappointing. A big disappointment was the size of the TV and variety of movies offered..we are spoiled with flat screens on the Eurodam and Niew Amsterdam) We also enjoy going to a "theater" for movies and this ship doesn't have a theater, movies are shown in the BB King Blues theater, so seating is less than ideal but certainly adequate. Several of the lecturers were excellent! Repositioning cruises in general don't have a big variety of activities but we did enjoy the trivia, the pool, the gym, the cooking shows ETAL. I wish there had been more to do that wasn't a sales pitch but that's so true of all the midrange cruise lines that I can't fault HAL alone...it's a trend we'd love to see end . As usual, the service on Holland America was exceptional.

A Bucket List Cruise

Noordam Cruise Review by Bopster

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Trip Details
  • Sail Date: March 2016
  • Destination: Transpacific
  • Cabin Type: Signature Superior Verandah Suite
Bucket list cruise including Australia and New Zealand. We arrived in Sydney a week early so we could explore a bit of Australia before the cruise and we truly enjoyed every day. We spent most of our time in Sydney, but did take a train to The Blue Mountains to visit friends who live in that beautiful area. Our hotel was on Darling Harbour (PARKROYAL Darling Harbour....Club room was quite nice and the Club Room was great for food, beverages all day long) and we certainly were glad we chose that area as it was convenient walking distance to so many places.

We boarded the Noordam in Sydney for our 14-15 day cruise around New Zealand and what a beautiful cruise it was!! The weather was perfect and the views were amazing We booked a lot of independent tours in NZ and each and every licensed tour guide was professional and we had such great tours of this beautiful country!. Although we have cruised on HAL before, this was our first experience on the Noordam and that class of ship, we've always had the larger, newer ships. All in all, the Noordam was in good condition and the Signature Suite we booked was well worth the cost because this was a lengthy trans-pacific repositioning cruise.

After our New Zealand portion we returned to Sydney for the day and then embarked on the Island hopping to Vancouver, Canada. Honestly, some of the islands were simply not that interesting at all, but we did have some good experiences. Of course, Hawaii was delightful but by then, we had had enough of shipboard life and wished we had chosen to disembark in Honolulu as quite a few others had chosen that option.

The food onboard the Noordam was quite good overall, the entertainment was better than we expected but the piano bar was disappointing. A big disappointment was the size of the TV and variety of movies offered..we are spoiled with flat screens on the Eurodam and Niew Amsterdam) We also enjoy going to a "theater" for movies and this ship doesn't have a theater, movies are shown in the BB King Blues theater, so seating is less than ideal but certainly adequate. Several of the lecturers were excellent!

Repositioning cruises in general don't have a big variety of activities but we did enjoy the trivia, the pool, the gym, the cooking shows ETAL. I wish there had been more to do that wasn't a sales pitch but that's so true of all the midrange cruise lines that I can't fault HAL alone...it's a trend we'd love to see end . As usual, the service on Holland America was exceptional.
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Cabin Review

Signature Superior Verandah Suite
Cabin SZ
Cabin was roomy and there was plenty of storage. The bed was very comfortable an the sitting area (couch, coffee table and two nice side chairs) The television and media area are antiquated! Small TV and you go to the library to check out DVD/video tapes. Bathroom had nice vanity with double sinks, a shower and separate shower/tub ..Balcony was spacious with table, chairs, lounge chairs and room for 4-6 guests comfortably.
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