The principal reason for my enjoyment of this cruise was the extraordinary service provided by the Oosterdam crew and service personnel. My every need was attended to and in many ways above and beyond all expectations. I was traveling on the second leg of a tour around South America back-to-back with the first leg which started in Buenos Aires and ended in Santiago. Toward the end of the first half of the trip I tested positive for Covid-19. In addition I was changing cabins. This would normally have been a disaster. But the Oosterdam crew took exceptional care of me. The medical staff attended me on a daily basis. The ship allowed room service with menu selections from the main dining room instead of the more limited room service menu, and a special team came in to clean daily. This made the quarantine bearable, and even minimally pleasant. I cannot thank the Oosterdam crew enough for their extraordinary care and attentiveness to our needs.
After five days (two at the end of the previous leg of the cruise, and three at the beginning of this leg of the cruise) I tested negative for Covid, and was out of quarantine.
(the review details below are a repeat of my observations from the previous leg of my journey)
For this half of the cruise I was in a Signature Suite outfitted for those with accessible needs. It was perfect for me. I was traveling with a mobility scooter which fit comfortably in the cabin. The bathroom was especially convenient with accessible shower, no step up into the bathroom, and convenient counter space. The balcony was spacious and faced west providing spectacular sunsets.
Aruba is a very small island, but there was a lot to see in a half-day tour. We saw an Aloe Vera factory, an historic lighthouse, an historic stretch of coastline and some very interesting rock formations on an enjoyable tour.
One of the most enjoyable ports on this tour. With a tour guide I visited the Manta fish market, "Panama" (really Ecuadorian) hat workshop, a vegetable ivory button/sculpture factory, historic public monument, as well as urban and countryside landscapes. We had a very enjoyable lunch in town.
My tour of Lima was highly enjoyable with lunch and a visit to the spectacular Larco Museum in Lima as well as other historical areas of the city, including urban Inca ruins. I was inspired to plan a return visit at some point in the future.
I was exceptionally lucky to find a tour guide who took me to monuments and facilities surrounding the Panama Canal, and then to the Chagres National Park where we boarded a canoe down the Chagres River to visit an indigenous Emberá-Wounaan people. This was a tourist-inspired village, but it was also authentic and of great interest. This was one of the highlights of my cruise
Spectacular. We had a narrator on the ship accessible from my cabin. I spent most of the transit on my balcony enjoying the engineering and the great scenery in the canal.