Amsterdam Cruise Review by OceanDreaming2
- Sail Date: July 2019
- Destination: Alaska
- Cabin Type: Vista Suite with Verandah
We took our chances and flew to Seattle the day of the cruise. We arrived before noon and our shared shuttle driver had us to the pier in no time. Check in was fast and our cabin was ready for us. Muster drill was held outdoors.
We had a Vista suite and it was similar to what Norwegian calls a mini suite. There was nothing special about the cabin. No butler, sparking wine or afternoon treats. We had a walk in shower instead of a tub and we were grateful for that. Except for the lack of water pressure!
The cabin was tight for two. A larger person would have to walk sideways to get around the bed. We had a sofa, glass top coffee table and and end table. The lamp on the end table had a single USB port. The lamp can be switched on and off from a wall switch. More than once, the wall switch was off and our device didn't charge. The refrigerator was inside the end table. It functioned but was completely iced over.
The desk area held the 32" tv, DVD player, ice bucket, a make up mirror that once lit up and more drawers than we could use. A handheld hair dryer and another mirror were in one of the drawers. The tv had horrible resolution and more often than not, no satellite reception. The ship does have an extensive DVD library for just this very reason.
The balcony held 2 chairs and ottomans along with a tiny end table. We sometimes brought the ottomans inside the cabin so we could watch a movie a little more comfortably.
The room darkening drapes were a necessity in the Land of the Midnight Sun. Also, one person could sleep while the other watched tv, with the additional drape adjacent to the bed pulled closed.
Food is always subjective but after 50+ cruises, I wasn't impressed. Food was often cold. How can pancakes be cold and hard when you are one of the first guests served in the dining room? Buffet food was not at all appetizing. I did appreciate buffet items being served to you but the selections were very limited as were the times the Lido was open. Don't expect to stop for a snack after attending a show in the theater as the Lido is closed from 8pm til 10:30pm.
If the show on the main stage isn't your cup of tea, a movie is shown nightly in the much smaller Wajang theater. America's Test Kitchen shared this space. If you want a seat for ATK get there 45 minutes before the program starts. It is one of the few activities available on sea days. Other activities included Microsoft and photography workshops and several EXC pesentations. Mahjongg was offered every afternoon but at strange times.
The casino is small but was never crowded. As a non-smoker, it did not seem smoky. The shops were constantly trying to sell old stock from the 2019 World Cruise.
We had been to Ketchikan, Juneau, Icy Strait, Sitka and Victoria on previous cruises. Weather was not on our side so our rain gear came in handy. One morning, I did a load of laundry before we went ashore. $2 to wash and the dryer was free. Best deal on board the ship. They even provide the detergent. We enjoyed walking around Anchorage and Kodiak Island. Our friends have a summer home in the Homer area so we spent the day with them. A highlight was visiting the Kilcher homestead from the Discover program Alaska: The Last Frontier. We also cruised Dawes and Hubbard Glaciers. Amazing!
We purchased the Victoria shuttle through Holland. We could've purchased the exact shuttle from the provider at 2/3rds of the cost. We should've known better.
We do enjoy cruising Holland America but the Amsterdam was too small for us. My husband was quite bored, especially during the day time hours. Our past experience was on the Eurodam, so we'll stick with a similar size ship in the future.
250,000+ people have entered their email
Port & Shore Excursion Reviews
AnchorageWe walked the area and enjoyed talking with an Iditarod sled dog racer.View All 85 Anchorage Cruise Port Reviews
View Cruise Critic's Anchorage Cruise Port Review
HomerWe had a personalized tour of the area with our friends who have a summer home near Homer.View All 45 Homer Cruise Port Reviews
View Cruise Critic's Homer Cruise Port Review
Icy StraitAlways enjoy this stop. A bear had been sighted earlier that day along the beach.View All 331 Icy Strait Cruise Port Reviews
View Cruise Critic's Icy Strait Cruise Port Review
KetchikanTake a walk along Creek Street. You might see a seal with a with a huge salmon like we did.View All 1,760 Ketchikan Cruise Port Reviews
View Cruise Critic's Ketchikan Cruise Port Review
KodiakFriendly, helpful peopleView All 45 Kodiak Cruise Port Reviews
View Cruise Critic's Kodiak Cruise Port Review
SitkaEnjoyed walking the downtown area. In the past we enjoyed the Fortress of the Bears.View All 329 Sitka Cruise Port Reviews
View Cruise Critic's Sitka Cruise Port Review
VictoriaOverpriced! Enjoyed Victoria very much but HAL charges way more than booking the same service independently.View All 1,282 Victoria Cruise Port Reviews
View Cruise Critic's Victoria Cruise Port Review