We chose this cruise for the great ports, reasonable price & that it is a Holland America cruise which happens to be our favorite. I'm surprised by all the complaints that have been published by passengers about this cruise. The ports were great, crew was friendly, food was very good, service was excellent, the entertainment was very good, Carlos was an excellent cruise director & even the weather was more than decent. We had more than our share of rain-less, sunny days. Most of the passengers were kind, friendly & usually smiling. We always have found Holland America to have the best itineraries & classic ships. They always give us great value for our travel dollar. We enjoyed the Maasdam & would gladly sail on her again. Ok, we did have some minor problems with the toilet not flushing, but a call to the front desk & the problem was solved. We are already booked on the October Atlantic Adventure on the Rotterdam & hope to join the Amsterdam for the world cruise in January.

Great ports, great price & a great cruise company.

Maasdam Cruise Review by JYKN

5 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: August 2016
  • Destination: Alaska
  • Cabin Type: Large Interior Stateroom
We chose this cruise for the great ports, reasonable price & that it is a Holland America cruise which happens to be our favorite. I'm surprised by all the complaints that have been published by passengers about this cruise. The ports were great, crew was friendly, food was very good, service was excellent, the entertainment was very good, Carlos was an excellent cruise director & even the weather was more than decent. We had more than our share of rain-less, sunny days. Most of the passengers were kind, friendly & usually smiling. We always have found Holland America to have the best itineraries & classic ships. They always give us great value for our travel dollar. We enjoyed the Maasdam & would gladly sail on her again. Ok, we did have some minor problems with the toilet not flushing, but a call to the front desk & the problem was solved. We are already booked on the October Atlantic Adventure on the Rotterdam & hope to join the Amsterdam for the world cruise in January.
JYKN’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Large Interior Stateroom
Cabin L 521
We were in an inside cabin towards the bow of the ship & it was more than fine. Room for our clothes, good hot shower, very little noise & very comfy bed.
Lower Promenade Deck Inside Cabins, Outside Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

  • Anchorage
    We took the free shuttle into town, rented bikes and rode the coastal trail. We had two very close encounters with a mother & baby moose. Each time they were blocking the trail, so we spent about 30 minutes with each. If you rent bikes, make sure you get the phone number of the rental place. We got a flat & had to walk the bike 4 miles back to town. Still was a great ride. If you want to but a Ulu knife, this is the place. There's an Ulu Factory where you can see how the knives are made & can buy decent 'seconds' (knives with fine blades but mistakes in printing) for around $10. There is also a free bus from the center of town to this factory, but it's not a far walk.
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  • Homer
    We dock on the split. Took the free shuttle about a mile to the opposite side of the split. Rented bikes for $16 for 4 hours (they do give you leeway here) & drove all through the split & the 5 miles into town. Good moose viewing & eagle nests in town. A beautiful port. Great mountains in the back ground.
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  • Icy Strait
    Easy walk into town. The path hugs a body of water where we saw many whales spouting. A large eagle nest was in a tree.
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  • Whale Watching
    We saw a group of humpback whales bubble feeding which we're told is rare to see (we saw this 8 different times on this trip). The captain said this was a great time of year to see this. At Mendenhall we were on a narrow bridge watching the salmon when we were approached by a black bear who decided she wanted to cross this bridge no matter who was on it. Later we saw a porcupine in a tree & a few eagles.
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  • Ketchikan
    Lots to see here. Hiked a steep trail into the mountain, but the fog was very thick. You can get a map with a walking trail through the town. We followed it & did the hiking trail, a couple of parks, the salmon ladder, husband's trail, old Ketchikan with Dolly's House, saw seals swimming, salmon laying eggs & even found a resale shop where we bought some Columbia rain gear for about 1/6th of original cost.
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  • Kodiak
    There is a free shuttle into town, but we walked. You can get a map with some decent hiking paths that you have to cross the bridge to get to. While hiking, be aware of the tides. If you are on the wrong side when the tide comes back in, you may have trouble getting back to the ship.
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  • Sitka
    Took the free shuttle into town & then took the $10 bus to the Fortress of The Bear & the Raptor Center. FOTB is a great place to take pictures of brown & black bears. They are usually very active & are in an area that replicates their natural environment. They charge $10 admission & it's well worth the fee. The bus returns every hour. From there they'll take you to the Raptor Center. This is a $12 admission. It's for a good cause, but you truly don't get a lot for your money. If you don't go in to the building, you can enjoy the caged birds outside, take a short hiking path (which warns you that this is a perfect area for brown bears, so be aware) & go by a small stream where people (probably fellow cruisers) pay to do some catch & release trout fishing. This path takes you back to the Raptor parking lot. If you don't talk the bus & walk out to the main road and turn left, you'll come upon a beautiful park with very easy walking paths, Follow the signs & you'll walk by a bunch of Indian totem poles, see a nature center & walk by an interesting salmon ladder all on the way back to town. The town is great to stroll. Merchants are friendly & helpful.
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