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Amsterdam Review

4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating
380 reviews
18 Awards

Around the World at 19 Miles an Hour

Review for Amsterdam to Around the World
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Captain Ricky
2-5 Cruises • Age 70s

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Sail Date: Jan 2018
Cabin: Large Ocean-View Stateroom
Looking at our room from the outside.
The inside of the cabin.
Cabin showing the view out our window.

Actually it was a little less than 19 miles an hour, 18.9 mph or 16.4 knots as I reckon it. Nineteen miles an hour seems like a leisurely pace to circle the planet. But on a human scale it’s really pretty hectic. To put 19 miles an hour into perspective, the average speed of a runner in the Boston Marathon is 8.8 mph, an average human walks at about 3.1 mph, an average horse’s walk is 4 mph. If you were on a sailing ship on a good day you could travel at 8 knots or 9.2 miles per hour.

At times we felt that hectic pace. We are we wanted to see as much as possible at each port. When there’s a port call on the very next day details of the first port get lost. Sea days are a time to reflect, write and sort pictures while memories were still fresh. Many of my cruise mates said things like “I really enjoyed Napier, or was it Dunedin; I can never keep them straight.” Or “I think we were here on a past cruise, but I can’t remember.” That could easily have happened to me so I pondered, sorted and wrote. Many evenings I skipped the entertainment to process my experiences.

You would think that on a long cruise I’d get a lot of reading done. I read fewer than half the number of books that I usually read in 4 months. On sea days I tried to spend an hour sitting in a deck chair on the promenade deck “reading.” I didn’t get through many pages. Reading time became thinking time while looking out at the ocean. Other important times for processing were walks around the promenade deck and my daily swim.

Cabin Review

Large Ocean-View Stateroom

Cabin E

This cabin was on the lower prom deck. It has a little less room than other "Large" ocean view cabins on Main or Dolphin decks but I liked it because I could walk out my door, turn left and to outside to either walk around the deck, take a picture or sit in a deck chair. The two things about this cabin that were not so good were power hosing the deck at 5 AM when the water stream it the window just above our heads and sometimes when the kitchen was rolling carts over head and it sounded like a bowling tournament. We got used to that and it didn't bother us, we never got used to the power wash. We liked the room because it was also easy to get to the dining room, one flight above us. We wound take this cabin again.

Port Reviews

Grand Cayman (Georgetown)

Meh, I mean how many t shirt shops and touts for Jimmy Buffett's Margaritaville can you handle. Anyway it rained.

Fuerte Amador (Balboa)

We took the tour to see the new locks and found it very interesting. We got to watch the full locking process of a huge LNG carrier. Afterward we went to the Frank Ghery Biomuseum which was well worth the stop.

Rangiroa

Took a glass bottomed boat trip, well worth it and then headed for the beach.

Moorea

Jaw dropping beautiful. We negotiated with a local boat operator and went swimming with sting rays and sharks and enjoyed snorkeling. Spent some nice beach time.

Bora Bora

Good experience snorkling, swimming with rays and sharks and a visit to a pearl farm. lots of opportunities for independent touring not needing to book on the cruise line tour.

Rarotonga

We did not have as much time here as we would have liked because of rough tendering that took a lot of time. But there is a city bus that goes around the island. You can take it in either direction, get on or off as you will This made the day a lot of fun for independent exploration.

Tauranga

No tour, just walking around the town, a great place to meet people, talk and get a sense of the local scene. Interesting place to interact with artists.

Napier

An art deco gem..We enjoyed walking around and took a vintage car tour. Then we visited the aquarium. Nice people, another chance to interact with locals.

Sydney (Australia)

we took a two day pass on the hop on hop off bus. Also booked our own tickets for the opera house. Right after sunset there is a projection of aboriginal art on one of the sails of the opera house. Worth waiting for. We also enjoyed tea at the Queen Victoria Building.

Hobart

Walked around and enjoyed the town. The highlight was visiting galleries of aboriginal art, having a nice glass of local wine while discussing art.

Port Arthur

Missed this port due to weather

Adelaide

We were there during the Adelaide fringe festival and booked tickets for several events. A highlight was participating in a flash mob. Great fun.

Albany (Australia)

Took a tour to the whaling station. Good insight into an industry that ended not so long ago.

Perth (Fremantle)

Fremantle was a gas, Perh was not as much fun, although we loved the bell tower with change bell ringing.

Manila

We would have enjoyed this more if it were not so terribly hot. We took a cab to different places outside of town, like volcanos, on one day and wandered the Intermuros the next day

Hong Kong

We have spent time here is the past so we spent time revisiting places from our younger lives. We loved it. High Tea at the Pen, of course. The Tai Kek cruise terminal is not very convenient but the design by Norman Foster is striking. The officials were officious at the terminal but that could not harm the magic.

Singapore

Again, we wandered places where we spent time in our earlier lives, like the Tiger Balm gardens. Mass transit here is great. And one new place, a must see, the Gardens by the Bay and the Super Trees. Of course little India, Chinatown, This place has everything. Plus a good place to stock up on toiletries, meds and other things you run out of on a long cruise.

Phuket

We had a nice time at the beach but nothing special.

Colombo

We took the Viceroy train to the elephant orphanage. The orphanage was good but the train ride was well worth it, Vintage cars rolling through the countryside.

San Juan

End of the cruise and a bit tired but enjoyed walking around the city.

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