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Rotterdam Cruise Review
4.0 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
489 Reviews

Great weather Alaska was great Rotterdam seemed understafed

Rotterdam Cruise Review by 50cruiser

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Trip Details
  • Sail Date: Jul 2010
  • Destination: Alaska
  • Cabin Type: Vista Suite

I booked our cruise through HAL including air, transfers , and tours . We had fantastic weather . mid 60s clear, slight waves so little ship movement.Hal had good flight times and we got good seats .We had bad weather in Chicago so our flights were delayed 90 min . Embarcation at port went very smooth , we went right on ship . We missed Mariner lunch by 15 min .Rooms were ready so we droped off carry ons and went to ledo for lunch . Ledo was a mess . hunderds of people trying to get to the small stations Rotterdam has set up . Very poor setup. Stations need to be moved farther apart . only about 5 people can get in line at each station . Ship was in new condition . Paint showed little rust . Rooms were great , beds were firm, flat screen tv nice . Bad thing we noticed was seeming lack of staff . It seemed HAL has cut staff throught ship . THE REALLY BAD AREA WAS THE PINNICAL GRILL . WE TRIED NUMEROUS TIMES TO GET SEATING AND COULDNT > WE WERE WAITLISTED BUT ONLY GOT TO EAT THERE 1 TIME > ID EAT THERE EVERY NIGHT > I FINALL TALKED TO THE RESERVATION DESK MANAGER > HE TOLD US THAT HAL HAD CUT THEIR STAFF SO THEY ONLY HAD STAF FOR HALF THE TABLES > I WAS VERY UP SET > I FILED A COMPLAINT AT THE DEST RELATIONS AND SHE SAID SHE WOULD FOWARD IT TO HAL HEADQUARTERS > It makes no sence to me if people want to pay extra to eat there why cant they have enough staff . The night we ate there ony a third of tables were full and we were waitlisted that night so all tables should have been full . We stoped there every night on our way to dining room and it was the same evey night diferent times of the eavning . Less then half of the tables were full . HAL need to fix this . I look foward to eating there . We had a great time watching the numerous Whales each day . We saw over 400 whales during our trip . I went fishing at KETCKAN and had great time catching 12 fish . One thing to not to do is the BEAR FORTRESS TOUR IN STIKA . They have 2 tame bears in an old fuel tank .Cost was about $50 on ship tour . Cost of admission at the Fortress was $10. I complained and the tour desk refunded $20 each . Still way too much but Ill donate the $30 we paid as a bad experence . Glacers were fantastic , many calvings . Activities during the day was almost non exisint. About only thing was trivia games . Id highly recamend the Sea otter tour at Stika though it was great . We saw lots of wildlife including Whales {Grey, humpback, and Killer} seals, otters , Grizzley bears, eagles, waterfalls . All in all we had a good time . Would I go again on HAL . Maybe , They need to upgrade their Entertainement and staff .

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Cabin Review

Vista Suite
Cabin A 6137

I have no complaints about cabin . We had an A class veranda suite and every thing was fine . Closets were great , new beads , veranda was nice. very little noise . no complaints .

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews


We had a great tour in Juneau . We did the Tracy arm glacier tour by boat We booked tour through HAL .We had a great tour . We got right up to the Glacier . We saw a lot of different wildlife , Bears, seals, mountain goats, whales . Only problem was our tour boat broke down and we were an hour late getting back . Fortunately we booked through ship so the ship waited for us to return . Only bad thing was not having enough time to see the town


Stika we did the Sea otter tour with an add on of Fortress of the bears we booked through HAL . We had a fantastic tour of the wildlife on the boat tour . REALLY BAD WAS THE FORTRESS OF THE BEARS > ITS IN AN OLD FUEL BUNKER TANK > ITS ABOUT 150 FT in diameter with 2 pet bears in it . Cost of admission was $10 at the park but HAL charged us $50 extra to go there Its about 5 min from port . Its a real disappointment Ill never recommend to anyone to do . Its not in a wilderness setting as described . Stika was a great town to tour . We ate in a little restaurant that makes fresh caught fish . I had fish and chips, Halibut. It was the best I think I've had . Its right next to a fresh fish store . They also make PIZZA . The waitress said the get fresh fish daily . We got great deals on souvenirs as stores were having a sidewalk sales with 50 - 75 % off . I got some nesting doll that were $70 for $15 nice little town


We did a 6 hr salmon fishing tour we booked through HAL . Had a great time . Our guide was a commercial fisherman who does tour during the summer . We caught lots of salmon . We had a Alpha male killer whale come within 50 ft of the boat . Another pod was on the other side of boat 200ft away . Fun watching them but they scared fish away . It was 30min before we cough more fish . the other couple in our group went on the Zip line tour . The also had a fantastic tour . They had never done zip line so it was an experience for them . all in all a nice day


We took the Garden tour through HAL and had a great time . The gardens were fantastic and our bus driver gave us a nice tour of town ,Id like to go back someday and see the town for a couple of days .

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