Nieuw Amsterdam Cruise Review by Off On An Adventure
- Sail Date: November 2018
- Destination: Eastern Caribbean
- Cabin Type: Deluxe Ocean-View Verandah Stateroom
We like Holland America for a number of reasons. With the older crowd aboard (though this time the average seemed younger than usual..or is it us getting older? We're in our 50's) life onboard is not so frantic. There always seem to be loungers available on the ship- not too crowded for the most part. We like the wide promenade deck and the loungers there - a wonderful place to sit, read and watch the ocean go by.
The BB Kings Blues band was as fantastic as we've come to expect. The mainstage productions from the Hal singers and dancers were quite good. The comedian and the magician as well. The only disappointing production was the small orchestra performing music to go with a BBC planet Earth movie which I thought was like filler. (The musicians were very good, just the whole idea wasn't working for us).
The Nieuw Amsterdam is quite a beautiful ship. Some people said it had been totally refurbished recently, I don't know if this is true but I really liked the style and decor.
The ports were good - very hot weather (which, being from Canada, is what we came for!).
I do wish HAL would put in a pier on their private island instead of tenders. There was another ship there at the same time and tendering was a very slow process. The private island is gorgeous - one of the most beautiful beaches I've seen.
The crew were all wonderful. We felt pampered. That's all we wanted!
We booked one excursion from the ship- the 'pirate' ship harbour cruise in San Juan. Though it was very pleasant and the crew were great and presented interesting historical facts, we didn't really see anything that we didn't see cruising in on the ship. So we found the $70pp price tag overpriced.
In St. Thomas we went up the gondola to a high point on the island - beautiful view of the harbour. We should've bought tickets on the ship because they were cheaper, but I left it too late.
On Grand Turk we rented a golf cart (privately) to take a tour of the island. It's not a big island and there isn't a lot to see: a lighthouse and a museum. But it was still interesting to see the extents of the small island. We picked up a local man on the road to town and he gave us some interesting facts about the place as well. He said that his house, (built by his grandfather?) was supported by beams made from masts from shipwrecks off the coast of the island!
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The bathroom is a decent size for a ship. The beds were very comfortable. The TV has good entertainment. We liked that we could watch part of a movie, stop, go for dinner, then resume later after our evening 'out'.