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Prinsendam Review

4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating
187 reviews
15 Awards
Prinsendam Dining
Prinsendam Cabins
Prinsendam Activity/Entertainment
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Editor Rating
Very Good
Marcia Levin
Cruise Critic Contributor

Editor's Note: Prinsendam will be leaving the Holland America fleet on July 1, 2019. 


Able to access small ports the big ships can't


Evening entertainment is dated and limited in scope

Bottom Line

Small, destination-focused ship with an adventurous spirit


Passengers : 793
Crew : 428
Passenger to Crew : 1.85:1
Launched : 2002/1988
Shore Excursions : 0

Editor's Note: During a May 2016 dry dock, Prinsendam received a slew of cosmetic updates -- including overhauls to the buffet and all suites. 

Prinsendam, Holland America's smallest vessel, is considered its pathfinder. This is the ship to choose if far-away destinations, longer-than-usual itineraries and superb value for money are key factors in selecting a cruise -- especially because Holland America has continued to upgrade and refurbish Prinsendam since acquiring the ship from Seabourn in 2002.

The latest major upgrade was completed in 2016 and the ship now carries more Holland America staples. It's got the line's signature Explorations Cafe by the New York Times, a lovely reading room and library. The Pinnacle Grill, Holland America's alternative restaurant that serves Northwest-inspired cuisine, has a fresh look and new menus. Cabins were refreshed with new carpets. And the ship, which has never been marketed as a family-friendly member of the HAL fleet, now operates the Club HAL kids' program (though there's no dedicated facility and counselors are only onboard during holidays when multi-generational groups are likely to be traveling).

Originally named the Royal Viking Sun when it debuted in 1988, and later the Seabourn Sun, the vessel has always been one where passenger comforts rank high with officers and crew. That philosophy has continued with Holland America. The ship's guest relations desk, for example, is visited daily by passengers who just want to say "hi" to staff rather than to voice a complaint.

"As You Wish" dining was introduced on Prinsendam in May 2008, allowing guests to select either traditional pre-set seating or dining on a flexible schedule from 5:15 until 9 p.m. daily.

Ultimately, one of the most delightful aspects of Prinsendam is that it is utterly unique within the HAL fleet -- despite the many features, facilities and amenities consistent with newer, bigger vessels. It's still by and large a ship for more mature travelers who want classic style cruising and contemporary conveniences.

Fellow Passengers

Prinsendam appeals to well-educated, well-traveled passengers. They are inveterate travelers -- primarily from North America and the U.K. -- in their late 50's and older. You won't be dazzled by diamonds on this ship (although I spotted some "beauts"), but you will be awed by the intelligence, curiosity and enthusiasm of your fellow passengers.

Holland America Prinsendam Dress Code

Country club casual is the norm, but count on a few formal nights per cruises and as scheduled on longer voyages. Formal can be anything from a dark suit to a white dinner jacket for men and a sequined ball gown to a glitzy silk short over pants for women. Shorts and sleeveless T-shirts are never worn in dining rooms.

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Holland America Prinsendam Cruiser Reviews

Beautiful cruise of the Norwegian Fjords!

The Prinsendam is a lovely, intimate small ship and it was one of her last sailings with Holland America Line. We had sailed on her before and wanted to have a farewell cruise.Read More
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10+ Cruises

Age 60s

Very enjoyable cruise in a lovely ship

Had sailed on Prinsendam 10 years ago and many other HAL ships since, but always intended to come back to the Prinsendam.Read More
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10+ Cruises

Age 70s

Goodby Old Friend. We will miss you.

I’m sorry to see Prinsendam go out of Holland America service. We’ve enjoyed Prinsendam in the past.Read More
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Captain Ricky

6-10 Cruises

Age 70s

A sad fairwell to a great ship

Holland America is going bigger and that means selling their small ship, the Prinsendam. This is our 5th trip and small ships are more rewarding for us.Read More
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10+ Cruises

Age 80s

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