Holland America Now Sailing From Barbados

April 8, 2008
Barbados has long been popular with U.K. holidaymakers as a resort destination, and now more cruise lines are trying to get in on the act.

This week, Holland America Line announced that it is joining the likes of Island Cruises, Fred. Olsen and P&O Cruises by starting a programme of cruises departing from the Caribbean island tailor made for the British.

In October 2008, Holland America will begin sailing a 14-night itinerary onboard its 55,000-ton, 1,258-passenger Maasdam from Barbados. The mid-size ship will visit 11 ports of call in the exotic Southern Caribbean region, following a similar trail as the other vessels in the area.

Holland America has mixed up the itinerary to include tiny island such as Tortola and Half Moon Cay Island as well as the more established (with the U.K.) St. Lucia, St. Thomas and St. Kitts.

A 16-night fly-cruise on Maasdam starts from £1,899 per person sharing a twin stateroom and includes scheduled flights and a pre-cruise hotel night in Barbados. There is also the option to take a nine-night trip and disembark in Ft. Lauderdale.

Barbados has already generated interest among U.K. cruisers -- and with plenty of air lift, and great cruise and stay deals, many choose to explore the island before (or after) boarding their cruise to see what else it has to offer. To that end, U.K tour operators Thomas Cook and Virgin Holidays are both featuring Maasdam's programme with a cruise and stay option.

Check out what other lines are sailing from Barbados by using our Find a Cruise feature.

--by Kelly Ranson, Associate Editor