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Our family of six start our 7-day Alaska cruise on July 31. We live in Seattle, so it was very convenience to get to and from the pier. We checked in around 11A. It was a breeze. Unlike other cruise lines, our 3 verandah cabins were ready by then. Learning from previous review, after checking our cabins and enjoying the views (Sapphire Princess was next to us), we went straight to the Vista Dining Room for our Mariner's lunch. By the way, this was not explained when we checked in; we learned about it from this forum (Thank you). I strongly disagreed with some reviewer who was disappointed about the food. We thought, we had one of the best cruise line food (I have been cruising more than 15 times with various cruise lines). Again, learning from previous review, I ordered sweet and sour shrimp in the Vista. It was excellent. We also tried Canaletto on the Lido deck. Not only the service was outstanding, the food was really good. No charge made it even better. We also tried the Pinnacle Grill one night. Again, we were not disappointed. There were so much food though with many yummy side dishes. On Thursday night, the Vista Dining room served Escargot, which is our favorites. It tasted really good. That's all my daughter ate that night. Three of us always had breakfast and lunches in the dining room since we didn't like too much crowd at the Lido. Service in the dining room was excellent and we got to know many of the crew. There were excellent and hard worker. Despite the grueling schedule, they were always happy, diligent, and eager to please. I've never seen them just hanging around with sour face like we sometimes noticed in other cruiselines we had been in. One thing about the ship. May reviewers indicated that the ship was old. In my view, the ship was elegant and maintained very well. Our cabins were always cleaned There were chips and cracks in certain places, but overall, the cabins were in good condition. we don't have any complains about the ships and our cabins. We've been in a newer ship where the toilet never worked properly. We did not enjoy much of the entertainment except Leo Ward, the magician. He is funny and entertaining.

Wonderful Alaska with Oosterdam

Oosterdam Cruise Review by Cruising_Pal

Trip Details
  • Sail Date: August 2011
  • Destination: Alaska
  • Cabin Type: Deluxe Ocean-View Verandah Stateroom
Our family of six start our 7-day Alaska cruise on July 31. We live in Seattle, so it was very convenience to get to and from the pier. We checked in around 11A. It was a breeze. Unlike other cruise lines, our 3 verandah cabins were ready by then. Learning from previous review, after checking our cabins and enjoying the views (Sapphire Princess was next to us), we went straight to the Vista Dining Room for our Mariner's lunch. By the way, this was not explained when we checked in; we learned about it from this forum (Thank you).



I strongly disagreed with some reviewer who was disappointed about the food. We thought, we had one of the best cruise line food (I have been cruising more than 15 times with various cruise lines). Again, learning from previous review, I ordered sweet and sour shrimp in the Vista. It was excellent. We also tried Canaletto on the Lido deck. Not only the service was outstanding, the food was really good. No charge made it even better.



We also tried the Pinnacle Grill one night. Again, we were not disappointed. There were so much food though with many yummy side dishes. On Thursday night, the Vista Dining room served Escargot, which is our favorites. It tasted really good. That's all my daughter ate that night.



Three of us always had breakfast and lunches in the dining room since we didn't like too much crowd at the Lido. Service in the dining room was excellent and we got to know many of the crew. There were excellent and hard worker. Despite the grueling schedule, they were always happy, diligent, and eager to please. I've never seen them just hanging around with sour face like we sometimes noticed in other cruiselines we had been in. One thing about the ship. May reviewers indicated that the ship was old. In my view, the ship was elegant and maintained very well. Our cabins were always cleaned There were chips and cracks in certain places, but overall, the cabins were in good condition. we don't have any complains about the ships and our cabins. We've been in a newer ship where the toilet never worked properly.



We did not enjoy much of the entertainment except Leo Ward, the magician. He is funny and entertaining.
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Cabin Review

Deluxe Ocean-View Verandah Stateroom
Cabin VA
We had cabins behind the elevators. We thought it would be noisy. To our surprise, we didn't hear any noises from the hallway/elevators. Perhaps it was masked by the white noise from the A/C and passengers in HAL tend to be more mature. No yellings heard and everyone was so polite.
Closet space was limited, but we could store our luggage under the bed.
Navigation Deck Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

  • Juneau
    My rating is high for Juneau, perhaps because we like the excursion so much. We took the Mendenhall Canoe Adventure and we were blessed with the beautiful weather. I really recommend this excursion; it got you really close to the glacier, waterfalls, and iceberg. It was just beautiful. You need to book this early since the space was hard to get, apparently due to limited permits issued by the US forest service. We were on the wailist and we were lucky that it was released at the last minute.
    For those who decided to explore Juneau by themselves, there were shuttles available to the Mendenhall Glacier for about $8, I think.
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  • Ketchikan
    This is another wonderful place. I like to shop here. We did not have much time, thus we decided to not taking any excursions. The weather was beautiful and sunny, so we just walked around. We walked along the creek that has many souvenir shops. We saw many salmons in the creek and one guy catched quite a bit of them and asked us to take picture of his catch, which we were gladly obliged.
    There was a discovery center in the center of town ($5 entrance fee; free for children) that my son really like and wish he could stay longer.
    View All 1,786 Ketchikan Cruise Port Reviews
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  • Sitka
    The ship used tender to transport passengers ashore. Although it was raining when we got to Sitka, I love this place (my kids didn't like it because it was too quiet, according to them). We did not take any excursion from the ship. We took a shuttle for $10/person. They took you around to various places such as the Raptor Center, Museum, National Park, etc. You can hop-in and out as you please. My favorite was the Raptor Center where they are rehabilitating eagles and other birds. You could see these magnificent birds really close.
    View All 339 Sitka Cruise Port Reviews
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  • Victoria
    We arrived in Victoria about 7PM. We took an excursion (not from the ship) to the butchart garden. It took about 30 to 40 minutes bus ride one-way. We didn't have much time in the garden, and felt rush to make it to the fire works that started at 9:30PM. It was so crowded and we didn't finish watching the fireworks due to the concern that we might got stuck with the crowd and late getting back to the ship. The next time though, we will just spend all day (day time) in the garden. Night time is also pretty, but not for taking pictures.
    View All 1,318 Victoria Cruise Port Reviews
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