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Nieuw Amsterdam Cruise Review
4.5 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
872 Reviews

North to Alaska with HA

Nieuw Amsterdam Cruise Review by darstamp

6 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: Jul 2019
  • Destination: Alaska
  • Cabin Type: Large Outside Stateroom (fully obstructed views)

This was my second trip to Alaska and my first time on Holland America. I was really impressed with this beautiful ship. It looked fresh and felt luxurious. There were plenty of elevators and lots of quiet places throughout the ship where one could settle in with a good book. The only time it felt crowded was peak times in the buffet.

I liked having breakfast and lunch in the dining room. They served steak and lobster on the 2nd gala night and it was very good. Other Dining Room menu items for dinner were hit and miss. The buffet was typical. I noticed they didn't have trays and the staff dished up most of the food for you, which I didn't really like but apparently it reduces the incidence of illness. Unlike some other cruise lines I've been on, there didn't seem to be any theme nights in the buffet. We dined in Canaletto, the Italian specialty restaurant, one night and the food and service were first rate.

I liked the films and talks showcasing Alaska. There were none of those dreadful "Vegas type" shows. There was an illusionist one night and a comedian. There was a dance group but it didn't appeal to me and I left. I loved the Lincoln Centre Stage featuring a piano quintette from Hungary and also the B.B. King Blues club. We had lots of fun at Trivia and Music Trivia.

The staff were helpful, friendly and service oriented although I found sometimes there was quite a wait to get a drink. Speaking of drinks, I discovered the Ginger Mule and will ask for that next time.

I didn't get off the ship in Juneau but took the White Pass and Yukon trip in Skagway and the Wilderness Exploration and Crab Feast in Ketchikan. Both through the ship and both very expensive. Converted to Canadian funds the cost was around $500.00.

Our party included a 12 year old and a 16 year old. The younger one had a blast but we worried there didn't seem to be much for the teen. However, she said at the end that she would love to do another cruise.

I had wheelchair assistance embarking and disembarking as I am on supplemental oxygen and the batteries don't last too long. I really appreciated this service. Disembarking was really well organized, probably the best I've ever experienced.

All in all, a lovely week with family and friends.

darstamp's Full Rating Summary
Onboard Experience
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Public Rooms
Fitness & Recreation
Shore Excursions
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Cabin Review

Large Outside Stateroom (fully obstructed views)
Cabin H 4099

I was in an obstructed ocean view room but my view was only partially obstructed by the lifeboat so I could see the water and get an idea of the weather. I was very pleased with the floor to ceiling glass panels which made it feel like a balcony room without the balcony and let in tons of light. I also loved having a small sofa and real bathtub with shower.

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

Glacier Bay

Beautiful. The weather was good if a bit hazy from the smoke of forest fires. There were lots of places to go outside so that one could get a good view of the glaciers and the wildlife.


I went whale watching the last time I was in Juneau and decided to spend the day on the ship this time,

White Pass Scenic Railway

This trip goes up and back on the same track so it doesn't really matter which side of the car you sit on. Unfortunately, the weather was overcast and misty so the views were not as good as they would have been on a sunny day. The story of the rush for gold in the Yukon was fascinating and our host made the trip very interesting. They easily accommodated my oxygen equipment. Skagway itself is a colourful town with lots of shops and tourist attractions.

View All 1212 White Pass Scenic Railway Reviews
Wilderness Tour & Crab Feast

This is the second time I have taken this excursion. Ketchikan is the wettest town in the USA and it was raining that day but that didn't diminish the charm of this place. We started with a boat ride where we were given quite a bit of information about Dungeness Crabs, saw some sea lions and watched an eagle swoop down from it's nest to retrieve a herring that the boat guide threw out for it. It was thrilling. The all you can eat crab meal is delicious but I wish they would allow at least another 15 minutes to really enjoy it. I would give it 5 stars if they did that.

View All 129 Wilderness Tour & Crab Feast Reviews

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