From 1872 to now: Holland America through the years

holland america cruises history

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Colin farrell aborad the ss united states, history of the holland america line….

Posted by: Michael Grace June 12, 2014

Liner History would not be complete, without studying the venerable Holland America Line.

One of the last lines to offer Trans-Atlantic crossings on a regular basis before the Jet took the fun out of crossing the pond.

 With a 135-year maritime history, Holland America Line is one of the oldest names in cruising but remains dedicated to offering guests ‘once in a lifetime experiences’ by keeping up with the times.

Its fleet of 15 elegant, modern ships sails worldwide, ranging from popular seven-night Caribbean and Alaska cruises, to Europe, the Panama Canal and as far afield as South America, New Zealand and Asia.

The HAL liner SS NIEUW AMSTERDAM in the 1950s with the SS UNITED STATES

The Holland America Line was founded in 1873 as the Dutch-America Steamship Company (Dutch: Nederlandsch-Amerikaansche Stoomvaart Maatschappij), a shipping and passenger line. Because it was headquartered in Rotterdam and provided service to the Americas, it became known as Holland America Line (HAL). Its headquarters are now in Seattle, Washington.

In 1989, HAL became a wholly owned subsidiary of Carnival Corp., the largest cruise line in the world. Today, the company operates 14 ships to seven continents and carries nearly 700,000 cruise passengers a year.

Holland America excels in service, amenities and special programmes, and although it doesn’t lay claim to be in the top-of-the-tree class, it deserves its place among the premium cruise lines.

Its ships have one of the highest staff-members-to-guest ratios, and statistics show that its staterooms are on average 25 per cent larger than the norm and even the standard staterooms measure 197sq ft against the industry average of 147. Seaview accommodation offers both bathtub and shower.

Menus are among the most extensive at-sea. Dining choices include formal elegance, alternative specialty dining in the Pacific Northwest-themed Pinnacle Grill, something more casual and complimentary 24-hour room service.

Dining in the First Class Dining Room (with orchetra in the balcony) aboard the SS Nieuw Amsterdam in the 1950s… The SS Nieuw Amsterdam was one of the last great trans-Atlanic liners and was considered the most beautiful along with the SS Normandie… 

In 1971, Holland America abandoned its passenger transportation service and switched to running cruise ships full time. Since then, the company has become known for wide variety of destinations it sails to. After obtaining government approval to visit Antarctica in the 1980s, the line now visits all seven continents. Its MS Prinsendam makes annual “Grand Voyages” that usually last more than 60 days. These explore and circle more exotic destinations such as South America and Africa. Due to the increasing popularity of the exotic and rarely-visited ports of call featured on Grand World Voyages, the MS Amsterdam will offer the Grand World Voyage in addition to the Prinsendam’s Grand Voyages in 2007 and 2008. 2008 is also the 50th anniversary of Holland America Line’s Grand World Voyage and will feature a true circumnavigation of the globe. In 2009, the sister-ship to the ms Amsterdam, MS Rotterdam will complete the Grand World Voyage.

In addition to its fleet of cruise ships, Holland America also owns the Westmark hotel chain which operates in Alaska and the Yukon, and Worldwide Shore Services, which provides warehouse and logistical support for the company. HAL shares its headquarters in Seattle’s Uptown Queen Anne, Seattle, Washington district with the above mentioned subsidiaries. Finally, HAL owns “Half Moon Cay” (its own private island in the Caribbean, officially known as Little San Salvador Island); nearly all of the line’s cruises through the region spend at least a day there.

The line’s his­to­ry, most­ly Dutch, is found in the decor and am­bi­ence on board. But Hol­land Amer­ica (HAL) has al­so done an ex­cel­lent job over the years of up­dat­ing to ap­peal to a broad­er range of guests. The re­sult: Fairly priced, clas­sic ships that are re­fined yet mod­ern­ized.

Hol­land Amer­ica of­fers a tra­di­tion­al cruise ex­pe­ri­ence, but with mod­ern de­tails. In the ships’ pub­lic ar­eas, you see flow­ers that rep­re­sent Hol­land’s promi­nent place in the flo­ral in­dus­try, In­done­sian fab­rics and wood­carv­ings that evoke the coun­try’s re­la­tion­ship with its for­mer colony, and sea­far­ing mem­ora­bil­ia that of­ten harkens back to Hol­land Amer­ica’s own his­to­ry. But the line has spent con­sid­er­able mon­ey re­fur­bish­ing and up­dat­ing its fleet of mid-sized ships with a spe­cial fo­cus on cui­sine.

Aware of food­ie trends, HAL cre­at­ed state-of-the-art Culi­nary Arts Cen­ters for on­board cook­ing lessons and food lec­tures, and has ap­point­ed fa­mous chefs (Mar­cus Samuels­son and David Burke) to serve on a Culi­nary Coun­cil to im­ple­ment new menus through­out the fleet. Al­so as part of the up­grade, spa cab­ins have been added and sev­er­al ships now have new re­sort-like pool ar­eas.

Em­brac­ing brand­ing for some pro­grams, the line offers Dig­ital Work­shop Pow­ered by Win­dows com­put­er class­es (com­pli­men­ta­ry); and a won­der­ful ocean-view me­dia/lounge/cof­fee shop area called Ex­plo­rations Café, brand­ed with The New York Times. A new program in conjunction with ABC’s hit show “Dancing with the Stars” brings professional dancers onboard (including stars from the show on select sailings) to teach passengers ballroom dance routines.

Who’s on­board? Lots of old­er cou­ples and sin­gles, but es­pe­cial­ly on the com­pa­ny’s big­ger ships in the Caribbean you’ll al­so find some younger fam­ilies with kids en­joy­ing new­ly ex­pand­ed youth fa­cil­ities.

Where they go: The ships vis­it more than 300 ports, reach­ing all sev­en con­ti­nents. Pop­ular itineraries in­clude Alas­ka, Eu­rope, Hawaii and the Caribbean.

Cruise History, cruising the past, holland america line history, history holland america line, Liner History, ss Nieuw Amsterdam, ss Rotterdam, ss United States, Ziegfeld girls, Ziegfeld follies, 1920s, social history  

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Holland America

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Holland America fleet

Ms rotterdam, ms nieuw statendam, ms koningsdam, ms nieuw amsterdam, ms westerdam, ms oosterdam, ms zuiderdam, ms volendam, review of holland america.

HAL-Holland America Line (HollandAmerica.com) is a Seattle -based cruise shipping company owned by Carnival Corporation .

HAL's current President is Gustavo Antorcha (since July 2020) who was previously the COO/Chief Operating Officer of CCL-Carnival Cruise Line . HAL's current CEO/Chief Executive Officer is Stein Kruse. HAL's current CFO/Chief Financial Officer is Jeremy Schiller (former CCL employee). HAL's current CMO/Chief Marketing Officer is Kacy Cole (promoted in May 2023 from VP of Marketing & E-commerce).

Holland America Group's current President is Jan Swartz (since December 2020) who is the Group President of four of Carnival's brands/subsidiaries (Princess Cruises, Holland America Line, Seabourn, P&O Australia) plus HAP-Holland America Princess Alaska Tours. Jan Swartz also manages all inter-group operations.

Company history and changes

Between 1873-1989, HAL was a Dutch mail-, cargo- and passenger shipping company operating regularly scheduled Transatlantic crossings between Holland and North America (also between Europe and South America). HAL was founded in 1873 (as "Nederlandsch-Amerikaansche Stoomvaart Maatschappij"/Dutch-American Steamship Company) and is headquartered in Rotterdam Netherlands .

On October 15, 1872, started the company's first cruise itinerary (15-day Transatlantic crossing from Rotterdam to NYC ).

In 1989, HAL was acquired by Carnival Corporation for ~EUR 530 million.

Holland America Line logo - CruiseMapper

On April 18, 2020, HAL celebrated its 147th anniversary. Nowadays, the company's main assets are the Westmark hotel chain (Alaska-Yukon region), Worldwide Shore Services (warehouses and logistics) and the Caribbean private island Little San Salvador Island (approx 160 km / 100 mi southeast of Nassau Bahamas). Widely known as Half Moon Cay , the island is an exclusive port destination for all Carnival Corporation-owned vessels.

Westmark hotels allow Holland America to dominate completely the Alaskan cruisetour market, offering the most diverse and cheap "land and sea" Alaska travel packages.

Being one of the cruise brands rated "best for couples", "best for adults" and "best and cheapest for Alaska", Holland America is a featured brand of Carnival Corporation - the world's largest cruise shipowner by tonnage and fleet capacity. One of the main operating companies in Carnival Group, HAL is also a member of the exclusive World's Leading Cruise Lines Alliance (WLCLA) - together with the sister-brands CCL-Carnival , Cunard , Costa , Princess , P&O (UK and Australia) , Seabourn .

Holland America Line is also amongst the premium-deluxe and mainstream ship travel brands. HAL ships visit 300+ seaports in 100+ countries, with 500+ traditional and Transoceanic itineraries scheduled annually. Voyages' lengths range from 2-day to 110+ days ( World Cruises ), but the majority are 7-day roundtrips, and many are between 10-21 days (including B2Bs/back-to-back itineraries ). In 2023, voyages leaving from the USA (FL, CA, MA, WA) visited 225 ports in 91 countries.

The company has a fleet of specifically designed liners providing home-feel accommodations, first-class theater productions, professionally-served and well-equipped wellness facilities (fitness/sports, health/spa and beauty), complimentary onboard programming for adults University at Sea (enrichment) and children Club HAL (kids and teens).

In 2017, was celebrated the company's 70 years of Alaskan cruisetour operations. HAL's Alaska passenger shipping services started in 1947 with a spontaneous cruisetour in Fairbanks. The idea eventually evolved into the "Alaska Land+Sea Journeys" - HAL's itinerary program that combines sea voyages with land-based adventure tours to Denali NP and Yukon Canada.

Since April 21, 2021, HAL has offered the all-inclusive package (alcohol included) "Have It All". It includes beverages (also spirits/max 15 drinks per day, bar service included), specialty dining (1x dinner for all passengers in the stateroom), Wi-Fi package (1st and 2nd passengers in the stateroom), 1x shore excursion (max value $100). "Have It All" costs USD 99 per person per day and offers at least 50% savings (as included amenities) in comparison to purchasing them separately. On longer itineraries (10-20 days in length) the "Have It All" package additionally offers US$100 (tour credit) per passenger.

In 2022, HAL became the first cruise shipping company awarded with RFM (Responsible Fisheries Management) certification (for wild-capture fisheries). HAL's credential is for serving on all its Alaska-deployed boats (6x in 2022) Alaskan wild seafood that is certified, traceable and fresh-caught via sustainable fishing methods. RFM is aligned with the UN's Food and Agriculture Organization's CCRF (Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries/1995-issued). Also in 2022, HAL partnered with ASMI (Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute/state's official seafood marketing arm) thus committing to serve onboard only sustainably sourced seafood.

In October 2022 HAL partnered with Pike Brewing Company (Seattle WA-based craft brewery) for "HAL Pils" (limited-edition Pilsner beer) available fleetwide (in all ship bars and lounges) since January 2023.

In December 2022, HAL became PPA's exclusive cruise line (Professional Pickleball Association). The company announced plans to add fleetwide pickleball courts (installed on every ship's top deck) by April 2023. Beginner lessons led by onboard instructors are offered complimentary. HAL also added Play Pickleball tutorial videos (on the interactive cabin TV programming) and started selling branded pickleball starter kits at the ships' retail shops.

In March-April 2023, HAL completed the expansion of its Onboard Enrichment Program (fleetwide) by adding to each liner new or expanded activity facilities (art studio, sports courts for playing basketball/volleyball/pickleball/tennis, and deckgames zones for playing ping-pong, cornhole, ladder ball, shuffleboard) and full-time specialists (art and crafts instructor, sports director). The new supervised Art Studios host classes like painting, drawing, coloring, crafting, needlework. In 2023-2024 were upgraded the entire fleet's libraries as well as the ships' card rooms (with new board games and jigsaw puzzles).

On April 27, 2023, the birthday of Willem-Alexander Claus George Ferdinand (The Netherlands' King/1967-born), HAL debuted the company's new mascot "Lewie the Lion". The mascot honors Holland's King's Day (celebrated as a national holiday).

Holland America Line mascot (Lewie the Lion)

In September 2023 Michael Stendebach (HAL's VP of Food and Beverage) announced the Global Fresh Fish program. Through this initiative, HAL locally sources ~80 different types of fish (from ~60 different ports globally) which are served on the ship in less than 48 hours. The announcement also mentioned that Masaharu Morimoto (1955-born Japanese chef) was appointed as HAL's Fresh Fish Ambassador. Dishes made with fresh fish are also available in the MDRs/main dining rooms at no charge. However, Morimoto's signature dishes offered in the MDRs cost extra.

In January 2024, HAL launched its "fresh fish" program announced by Michael Stendebach (HAL's VP of Food & Beverage).. ~80 different fish types are locally sourced globally (from 60 ports). Fresh fish is served on the ship in less than 48 hours and at no extra charge in the MDRs/main dining rooms.

In May 2024 was introduced fleetwide the "Dutch Day" (complimentary experience) available on every voyage in Europe, Asia, Alaska, and the Caribbean. The focal point is the Dutch Dinner (Holland food-themed dinner served in the MDR/Main Dining Room) once per cruise. Most of the dishes (both classic and contemporary, including Stroopwafel Cheesecake) are also available in the buffet restaurant (Lido Market). The Orange Party is also held on Dutch Day and features live band performances, craft beers, classic cocktails, and Dutch-inspired appetizers. On Dutch Day in the Crow’s Nest Cafe are served fresh-baked poffertjes (traditional Dutch batter cakes resembling small pancakes).

Also in May 2024, HAL's shipboard beverage program was enhanced with itinerary/destination-inspired cocktails made by certified mixologists. The upgraded program is based on cocktail menus exclusive to the current itinerary/region. The drinks are created by the famous bartenders Sam Ross (Australian/Alaskan menu) and Tess Posthumus (Dutch./European menu).

Dutch Royal Family members serving as HAL ship godparents

On October 17, 2021, HAL officially announced the name of the new Rotterdam ship 's godmother - HRH Princess Margriet Francisca of the Netherlands (1943-born, from the house of Orange-Nassau/van Lippe-Biesterfeld). Princess Margriet is the 3rd daughter of Queen Juliana Louise Emma Marie Wilhelmina (1909-2004) and Prince Bernhard of Lippe-Biesterfeld (1911-2004) and is an aunt of Holland's current monarch Willem-Alexander Claus George Ferdinand (1967-born, King of the Netherlands since 2013).

HAL's connection to The House of Orange-Nassau (Huis van Oranje-Nassau/Dutch Royal Family) started in 1929 when Duke Henry of Mecklenburg-Schwerin (1876-1934, Prince of the Netherlands/husband of Queen Wilhelmina between 1901-34) godfathered Statendam III (1927-built passenger liner). Next are listed the godmothers of HAL liners through the 20th-21st centuries.

Princess Margriet Francisca (1943-born) named 5x liners - Prinsendam I (1972), Nieuw Amsterdam III (1983), Rotterdam VI (1997), Oosterdam (2003), Rotterdam VII (2021).

Queen Maxima Zorreguieta Cerruti (1971-born/spouse of King Willem-Alexander) named 2x liners - Nieuw Amsterdam (2010), Koningsdam (2016).

Princess Beatrix Wilhelmina Armgard (1938-born) named Statendam IV (1957) and/as Queen Beatrix (reign 1980-2013) named Eurodam (2008).

Queen Juliana Louise Emma Marie Wilhelmina (1909-2004) named Rotterdam V (1958).

Queen Wilhelmina Helena Pauline Maria (1880-1962) named Nieuw Amsterdam II (1937).

HAL's newest vessels are from the PINNACLE class and named Koningsdam (2016), Nieuw Statendam (2018) and Rotterdam (2021). These are also the company's ever largest, with volume 99500 GT-tons and max passenger capacity 3200.

In late-January 2017, the shipowner/Carnival Corporation announced 2 more shipbuilding orders. The new liners were ordered for Princess (ROYAL-class) and HAL (PINNACLE-class). Carnival signed an MoA (memorandum of agreement) with the Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri to construct both units. They were delivered in 2021 ( Nieuw Rotterdam for HAL, at Marghera yard) and 2022 ( Discovery Princess , at Monfalcone yard). By the time when both contracts were finalized (February 2017), Carnival Corporation had a total of 19 new boats scheduled for deliveries between 2017-2022.

In 2023, HAL conducted 5 wet-dock refurbishments to expand the casino space on its vessels in the PINNACLE-class (Nieuw Rotterdam, Koningsdam, Nieuw Statendam) and Signature-class (Eurodam, Nieuw Amsterdam). Each of the enlarged gambling facilities now has 140 of the gaming industry's newest slot and video poker machines. In addition, a separate non-smoking area was added in the casinos of Nieuw Rotterdam, Nieuw Statendam and Koningsdam.

HAL's 150th Anniversary (2023)

On April 18, 2023, the company celebrates its 150th Anniversary. In July 2022 were announced the special events and activities including on the two themed Transatlantic crossings (April 4th/16-day from Fort Lauderdale to Rotterdam, and October 15th/15-day from Rotterdam to Fort Lauderdale) on the fleet's newest member MS Rotterdam VII .

The planned commemorative onboard activities and amenities include expanded food and beverage menus, entertainment and enrichment programs (special guest speakers and artists).

More details are expected in the coming months.

HAL ships names

In the company's over 130 years of maritime history, there are some quite charmingly special traditions and truly unique practices. One of them is that all HAL ships go with the "dam" suffix. They usually bear names of famous Dutch landmarks, the 4 compass points, or some of the most prominent river dams or port cities in the Netherlands. And this special list of "Dutch landmarks" includes rivers, mountains, sea, city/town.

Some vessel names have been reused (some of them several times) with the old ship's retirement. This practice of renewing ship names allows the company to emotionally connect its glorious past with its amazing business growth in our times.

HAL ship classes (ordered high to low)

The fleet's newest and ever largest vessels are from the PINNACLE-class - Koningsdam (2016), Nieuw Statendam (2018) and Nieuw Rotterdam (2021).

SIGNATURE-class (enhanced Vista-class design) are Eurodam and Nieuw Amsterdam. Compared to Vista-ships, they have 1 additional deck (between Lido and Observation) allowing more staterooms (mostly spa cabins) and public venues ("Tamarind", "Silk Den").

VISTA-class are Zuiderdam, Oosterdam, Westerdam and Noordam.

SINGLE-class is Prinsendam (sold in 2018).

ROTTERDAM-class (R-class) are Rotterdam VI, Volendam, Zaandam and Amsterdam.

The fleet's oldest are from the STATENDAM-class (S-class). These are Statendam (now Vasco da Gama ), Maasdam (now CFC Renaissance ), Ryndam (now Celestyal Journey ) and Veendam (now Aegean Majesty) . They were the fleet's first to have an Atrium, a 2-deck dining room, a theater lounge, Lido Pool Deck (with a retractable glass roof).

In July 2018, MS Prinsendam was sold to Phoenix Reisen , starting operations for the German company (as MS Amera) on July 1, 2019. Prinsendam's schedule was assimilated by the fleetmates Rotterdam , Volendam and Veendam .

In July 2020 were sold 4 units - Amsterdam/Bolette and Rotterdam/Borealis (to Fred Olsen ), and Maasdam/Renaissance and Veendam/Aegean Majesty (to Seajets Greece). Their schedules were canceled or assumed by other HAL ships.

Holland America Line refurbishments

In 2003-2008, by the SOE (Signature of Excellence) program, HAL upgraded all older vessels, on which were also added new venues, stateroom categories, and amenities.

In November 2015, HAL announced a USD 300 million fleetwide drydock refurbishment program. The fleet renovation project included Suite improvements (new decors, furnishings, amenities and services upgrades) for all staterooms on Vista-Signature-R-Class boats. The first scheduled for drydocks were Oosterdam and Eurodam , followed by Westerdam , Nieuw Amsterdam , Noordam, Zuiderdam, Amsterdam , Rotterdam , Volendam , Zaandam .

All passenger Suites were upgraded with new sofas, chairs, headboards, carpets and wall coverings, privacy curtains, draperies, bed runners, bed skirts, quartz stone tops (on the vanity desks), vanity lighting, dressers, dressing tables, nightstands.

Other upgrades included a new USB outlet (on the headboard), bedside LED lights, upgraded electrical outlets, lighted closet rod, new interactive HDTV system (allowing complimentary movies-on-demand, access to the ship's daily scheduled activities program, ship information - restaurants, bars, spa services, checking onboard accounts, Internet). Suite bathrooms received a wall of designer glass tiles (backdrop to the new dressing area with modern taps, under-mount sink), new mirrors (with integrated LED lighting), stylish floor tiles, nightlight.

Since 2016, all Suites (fleetwide) received the following exclusive amenities - priority services (embarkation, disembarkation, tendering, dining reservations), complimentary services (laundry, pressing, dry cleaning), exclusive access to Neptune Lounge, private breakfast service (at Pinnacle Grill). The list of new suite cabin amenities includes a premium duvet, luxury bathrobes, and slippers, luxury bath products (by Elemis). BOSE SoundDock (iPod docking station), umbrella, binoculars, complimentary mimosa cocktails (with in-cabin breakfast), Nespresso coffee machine.

In 2018, HAL contracted ABB Group (Swedish-Swiss corporation specializing in robotics, marine power, and propulsion equipment) for installing shore-power systems fleetwide. The technology allows docked ships to receive shoreside power supply (from the port city's grid) and turn off their diesel engines/generators, thus reducing to zero emissions and noise. ABB installed its shore-power equipment on 11x HAL liners. Switchover (ship-to-shore power) at seaports takes ~20 min.

HAL's Club Orange

"Club Orange" program provides exclusive amenities to HAL's Suite passengers booked in cabin categories Neptune and Pinnacle. The bonus perks by this program include:

  • priority services (check-in, disembarkation, tendering, dining reservations)
  • 24-hour concierge service (assistance, information, reservations, hotline)
  • exclusive dining venue (serving complimentary Pinnacle Grill breakfast and Dining Room dinner, plus exclusive dishes)
  • dedicated Concierge Desk (Guest Services and Tours)
  • room service (a la carte breakfast menu with complimentary gourmet dishes - including smoked salmon with eggs Benedict, steak and eggs), sparkling wine (welcome glass, at embarkation day)
  • Club Orange tote bag (welcome gift)
  • premium bathrobes (in-cabin use, available for monogramming and purchasing)

Club Orange is also available for a limited number of non-suite staterooms per voyage. The program was launched in December 2018 (on Koningsdam and Nieuw Statendam) and available fleetwide since 2019. On other HAL ships, Club Orange Restaurant is designed as a dedicated section in MDRs (Main Dining Rooms) opened for breakfast and dinner. On Koningsdam and Nieuw Statendam, "Culinary Arts Center" was renamed "Club Orange Restaurant".

In October 2019, HAL implemented fleetwide new Club Orange amenities, including cabin upgrades (within the booked category) and the "Captain's Choice" event.

  • HAL customers purchasing the "Club Orange" package receive a cabin upgrade to the best available (within the booked category) stateroom (based on availability at the time of the package purchase).
  • The "Captain's Choice" is during the voyage and offered as an exclusive event for Club Orange passengers only. It could be one of several pre-scheduled experiences - like exclusive pre-opening shopping access, behind-the-scenes hotel department tour, private coffee chat with Music Walk musicians, etc.

The Club Orange package costs USD 35 per person per day (on Koningsdam and Nieuw Statendam) and USD 25 pp per day on all other HAL cruise liners. The stateroom's first and second passengers are both required to buy the package. Stateroom's 3rd and 4th passengers are not charged. Club Orange must be purchased prior departure (not available for onboard purchasing).

(NEW 2019) Holland America Line's coffee brand "Rotterdam 1873"

Since February 2019, passengers on all HAL ships (fleetwide) can enjoy the new specialty coffee "Rotterdam 1873". The new brand was created exclusively for Holland America Line via partnership with Beukenhorst Coffee USA Inc (Dutch coffee house in West Palm Beach, Florida ).

"Rotterdam 1873" is a small-batch roasted coffee blend named after the port city Rotterdam and the year in which Holland America Line was established. The new coffee blend consists of the best Indonesian and Central-South American Arabica coffee beans. It is available for purchasing (by the cup) in all shipboard beverage venues. As a souvenir (at ship's Grand Dutch Cafe, and Explorations Cafe) is available for purchasing regular and decaffeinated 12-oz bag (Rotterdam 1873 beans).

The new coffee blend is roasted fresh in batches (by Beukenhorst Coffee USA) then supplied to the liners. Since 1989, HAL offered as an alternative (at extra cost) the Netherlands-imported "Beukenhorst Koffie" in Main Dining Rooms, Lido Market (buffet restaurants) and other onboard venues serving complimentary coffee.

(NEW) HAL cruise gratuities (2024)

Prior to December 2018, HAL's daily gratuities per person/pp were USD 13,50 (interior-oceanview-balcony staterooms, applied to both adults and kids) and USD 15 (suites).

On HAL cruises after December 1st (2018), daily gratuities were increased to US$15,50 pp per day (non-suite passengers) and US$17 pp per day (for suite passengers).

On February 1st, 2023, HAL's daily gratuities were increased to US$16 pp per day (non-suites) and US$17,50 pp per day (suites).

Starting February 1st, 2024, HAL's daily gratuities are increased by 9% - to US$17 pp per day (non-suites) and US$19 pp per day (suites).

Daily gratuity is an automatic service charge (applied to both adults and kids) that is added to the passenger's onboard account each day. Passengers can prepay cruise gratuities. The amount of gratuities is split between the ship's staff (dining, housekeeping, cabin stewards).

However, the charge can be removed/its amount adjusted at any time during the voyage up until the onboard account is settled before debarkation.

Note: On May 1, 2017, Holland America Line raised daily gratuities from USD 12,50 to 13,50 pp (non-suite pax).

Holland America fly-cruise deals

In August 2015, Holland America added enhanced features to its flight booking program "Flight Ease". HAL's website allows travelers to choose flights (departure and return) separately, also to compare real-time airfares, plus detailed schedules. HAL also allows adding of stopover flight segments.

Flight Ease's improved functionality includes:

  • calendar for flight cruise planning based on the cruise itinerary's departure and arrival dates
  • independent selection of departing/return flights
  • improved website navigation - you can move across fly bookings, including search, select, summary, pay
  • improved search box filters to select best flights as preferred airlines, number of stops, ticket price, departure time, flight duration
  • easy airfare comparison for the same flight
  • flight schedules with detailed info on aircraft types, flight connections, layover times.

HAL's "Flight Ease" air booking program offers up-to-the-minute flight schedules and selection of 2 competitive pricing on flights with arrival/departure dates same as the booked cruise itinerary. All flight cruise deals booked through HAL's Flight Ease program feature 24-hour assistance and "Next Port Protection". The latter guarantees that in case of flight delays or cancelations, Holland America Line takes care of the flight changes in order to join the cruise ship at the next port of call along the booked itinerary.

Airfare payments are due with HAL cruise's final payment. Restricted Fares include cancelation fees and require full payment for the flight reservation at booking time.

(NEW) HAL cruise shore excursions "Best Price Guarantee"

Since November 2017, HAL offers a "best price guarantee" for customers with pre-booked shore excursions (land tours). The new program is available fleetwide and on all cruise itineraries, excluding only voyages in Asia. By the program, any booked passenger who finds a comparable excursion/tour deal (offering same amenities, including date, duration, transfers, transportation, meals) elsewhere at a lower price will receive an OBC ("onboard credit") of 110% of the price difference.

The request must be submitted online up to 7 days prior cruise ship departure. Booked passengers are notified within 2 days of submission if the tour/excursion meets the "Best Price Guarantee" requirements. If eligible, booked passengers receive a non-refundable OBC to be used during the voyage.

Best Price Guarantee applies only to publicly available and advertised with pricing tour deals. Passengers canceling their HAL tour on the ship are not eligible for "Best Price Guarantee" OBC. The new program further guarantees HAL tour deals' exceptional value, competitive pricing, and best quality. As of 2018, through HAL can be purchased over 4100 tours/excursions in around 550 cruise ports.

Holland America smoking policy

Implemented in January 2017, Holland America Line has a new cruise ship smoking policy banning smoking on all cabin balconies. As previously, in-cabin smoking is also not allowed. Smoking E-cigarettes and vaping devices is permitted in designated areas, as well as inside passenger staterooms (but not on cabin balconies).

Passengers who violate the company's ship' smoking policy will be fined a cleaning fee USD 250 per day.

There are smoking-allowed areas for active slot machine players located in all HAL cruise ship casinos - excepting on MS Oosterdam and MS Eurodam, which casinos are entirely smoke-free. Follows the list of Holland America ships' designated smoking-allowed areas:

  • MS Maasdam - Seaview Bar/Pool on the starboard side; Sports Deck forward and aft of Crow's Nest on the starboard side
  • MS Veendam - Seaview Bar/Pool on the starboard side; Sports Deck forward and aft of Crow's Nest on the starboard side
  • MS Volendam - Seaview Bar/Pool on the starboard side; Sports Deck forward and aft of Crow's Nest on the starboard side
  • MS Zaandam - Seaview Bar/Pool on the starboard side; Sports Deck forward and aft of Crow's Nest on the starboard side
  • MS Rotterdam - Seaview Bar/Pool on the starboard side; Sports Deck forward and aft of Crow's Nest on the starboard side
  • MS Amsterdam - Seaview Bar/Pool on the starboard side; Sports Deck forward and aft of Crow's Nest on the starboard side
  • MS Noordam - Seaview Bar/Pool on the starboard side and the Oak Room
  • MS Oosterdam - Seaview Bar/Pool on the starboard side
  • MS Eurodam - Seaview Bar/Pool on the starboard side
  • MS Zuiderdam - Seaview Bar/Pool on the starboard side
  • MS Prinsendam - Seaview Bar/Pool on the port side
  • MS Nieuw Amsterdam - Seaview Bar/Pool on the starboard side
  • MS Westerdam - Seaview Bar/Pool on the starboard side
  • MS Koningsdam and MS Nieuw Statendam - Seaview Bar/ Pool (aft portside on deck 9) and Sun Bar (aft starboard on deck 11).

For comparison, NCL Norwegian banned smoking in November 2014, Royal Caribbean - in 2011, Carnival Cruise Line - in July 2014.

Holland America Alaska cruisetours (land-and-sea packages)

The 7-day "Alaskan Explorer" (roundtrip from Seattle WA ) is the company's signature cruise tour itinerary for this unique destination.

The other itinerary (7-day "Inside Passage") is roundtrip from Vancouver Canada .

HAL liners in Alaska offer cruisetours with lengths 10-13-14-15 days. They are inclusive of 3-day cruising (between Vancouver-Juneau) plus scenic train travel (Juneau-Anchorage) on the White Pass-Yukon Route Railway.

  • (Y5C) 10-Day Yukon+double Denali (Vancouver to Anchorage)
  • (Y3C) 13-Day Yukon+triple Denali (Vancouver to Anchorage)
  • (Y3L) 14-Day Yukon+triple Denali (Anchorage to Vancouver)
  • (Y2l) 15-Day Yukon+triple Denali (Anchorage to Vancouver).

(Coronavirus crisis) passenger shipping pause 2020-2021

Due to the COVID pandemic, HAL suspended its entire fleet's passenger shipping operations (all 14 liners) canceling all voyages with pre-scheduled departures in the period March 13, 2020, through June 30, 2021.

HAL's fleet was fully operational by June 12, 2022.

Next are listed HAL's first departures by ship (homeport/destination) in 2021-2022 : ROTTERDAM (October 20, 2021/ Maiden Voyage /Transatlantic from Amsterdam to Fort Lauderdale), NIEUW AMSTERDAM (July 24, 2021/Alaska from Seattle), NIEUW STATENDAM (Nov 21, 2021/Caribbean from Fort Lauderdale), KONINGSDAM (Oct 10, 2021/Mexico from San Diego California), EURODAM (Aug 15, 2021/Mediterranean from Piraeus-Athens), ZUIDERDAM (Dec 24, 2021/Mexico from San Diego California), NOORDAM (April 24, 2022/Fort Lauderdale to San Diego/Alaska from Vancouver), OOSTERDAM (May 8, 2022/Mediterranean from Civitavecchia-Rome), ZAANDAM (May 12, 2022/Fort Lauderdale to Montreal/Canada-New England), VOLENDAM (July 3, 2022/Norway from Rotterdam), WESTERDAM (June 12, 2022/Alaska from Seattle).

  • All HAL Alaska cruises and Alaskan cruisetours (Land+Sea Journeys) in 2020-2021 were initially canceled, but in 2021 NIEUW AMSTERDAM was rescheduled for Alaskan roundtrips from Seattle (July 24 thru Oct 2).
  • Due to Canada's extended (through 2022) ban on cruise ships, HAL's Canada and New England 2021 schedule was entirely canceled.
  • VOLENDAM's "World Cruise 2022" from Fort Lauderdale (74-day "Grand South America and Antarctica Voyage 2022") was canceled.
  • ZAANDAM's "World Cruise 2022" (129-day roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale/Jan 3-May 12) was canceled.
  • All ship relocation itineraries (through November 1, 2021) visiting ports in the USA-Canada were canceled.
  • NOORDAM's Asia 2021-2022 program (from Hong Kong-Singapore-Yokohama), OOSTERDAM's Australia-New Zealand 2021-2022 program (from Sydney and Auckland), WESTERDAM's South America 2021-2022 program, and ZUIDERDAM's Caribbean-Mediterranean 2021 programs (from Fort Lauderdale and Barcelona-Venice-Rome) were also canceled.
  • HAL's Europe 2021 schedule (ships Eurodam, Nieuw Statendam, Volendam, Rotterdam) was canceled.
  • ROTTERDAM's Maiden Voyage was rescheduled from August 1 to Sept 26 and finally Nov 3, despite the on-schedule delivery from Fincantieri (July 30).

To all affected bookings were offered 2 options. The first offer is rebooking with 125% refund in FCC (future cruise credit) plus USD 250 pp in OBC (onboard credit) on any itinerary through Dec. 31, 2022. The second offer is canceling with a full (100% monetary) refund including on prepurchased through HAL packages and services.

  • HAL's cruise cancelation policy was expanded to allow penalty-free cancelation of cruises departing through December 31, 2020. Fully refunded (100%) were all prepurchased through HAL packages and services. HAL also reimbursed cancelation fees for flights and other travel arrangements to and from the ports of the canceled voyage.
  • In July 2020, Carnival Corporation (via Holland America Line) sold 4 liners - MS Amsterdam and MS Rotterdam (to Fred Olsen ) and MS Maasdam and MS Veendam (to Seajets Greece). All scheduled for the 4 ships voyages were canceled or assumed by other HAL ships.

In 2021, HAL's Alaskan program (cruises and "Alaska Land+Sea Journeys" packages) was canceled entirely but (unlike in 2020) the Carnival Corporation-owned Alaskan businesses Gray Line Alaska (Westours Motor Coaches LLC), Princess Alaska Lodges (Princess Cruises) and Westmark Hotels (Holland America Line) remained operational offering travelers lodging and escorted land tours (fishing, flightseeing, wildlife viewing, river rafting, etc).

Itinerary of Holland America

The list of HAL-Holland America cruise destinations includes Alaska, Caribbean (also Panama Canal), Hawaii, Europe (mainly Mediterranean, but also Baltic, UK, Iceland, Greenland, Bermuda), Australia, Asia, Canada and New England USA, Transatlantic crossings (RepositionCruises.com), South America, Grand Voyages and Around The World voyages .

At CruiseMapper you can easily compare all HAL cruise itinerary changes per liner (now and in the coming two years) on a single page. The comparison of all HAL destinations by boat will give you all homeport and itinerary changes in the company's current program.

Note: Holland America Line is famous for having the most Glacier Bay NP permits (more than any other cruise company). HAL ships also visit College Fjord (Prince William Sound), Dawes Glacier (Endicott Arm Fjord), Hubbard Glacier (Wrangell–St Elias NP) and Tracy Arm Fjord (Twin Sawyer Glaciers/south of Juneau). In Alaska, HAL offers ~180 shore excursions/tours themed on wildlife viewing.

Pole-to-Pole World Cruise 2025 (Volendam & Zuiderdam)

In April 2023 HAL announced MS Volendam's "Pole-to-Pole World Voyage 2025" (133-day itinerary).

Curiously, this first for the brand pole-to-pole voyage runs simultaneously with MS Zuiderdam's "Grand World Voyage 2025" (124-day itinerary), both are roundtrips from Florida USA ( Port Everglades/Fort Lauderdale ) and both depart in January 2025.

To book the unique itineraries customers were required to contact HAL's World Cruise Reservations Desk or a travel agent, starting from April 20th. Customers with a deposited Future Cruise Request get priority booking confirmation before these voyages officially open to the public on May 24th, 2023.

Volendam's 133-day "Pole-to-Pole Grand Voyage 2025" departs on January 25th (2025) and visits 68 ports (28 countries/5 continents). The south-north-south route features a Panama Canal transit, navigation along South America's west coast to Antarctica and the Falklands, then up and along South America's east coast (Argentina and Brazil/including cruising on Amazon River). Follows a Transatlantic crossing to Africa, northbound to Europe and up to Norway's Nordkapp/North Cape and the Norwegian Fjords, then westbound (crossing again the Atlantic Ocean) and via Iceland and Greenland back to North America/USA.

HAL's first "pole-to-pole cruise" also features 8 overnight ports (Fuerte Amador/Panama City, Callao-Lima, Buenos Aires, Rio de Janeiro, Barcelona, Lisbon, Reykjavik).

Zuiderdam's 124-day "Grand World Voyage 2025" departs on January 4th (2025) and visits 46 ports (32 countries/6 continents). The east-to-west route features a Panama Canal transit, Transpacific crossing (via Easter Island) to Australia, then up (via the Great Barrier Reef) to Asia (Indonesia, Sri Lanka), then southwards to South Africa, up to Seychelles and along Africa's east coast. Follows a Suez Canal transit to Europe/Mediterranean and a Transatlantic crossing back to the USA.

Zuiderdam's World Voyage 2025 also features 9 overnight ports (Callao-Lima/2 nights for a visit to Machu Picchu, Hanga Roa/Easter Island, Papeete Tahiti, Sydney NSW, Singapore, Cape Town South Africa, Mombasa Kenya, Safaga-Luxor Egypt, Barcelona) as well as 7 late-night departures (Manta Ecuador, Seychelles, Cape Town, Durban, Aqaba-Petra Jordan, Civitavecchia-Rome, Gibraltar UK).

Both HAL ships also are scheduled to meet in Barcelona on April 24th (2025), for a joint overnight port stay with planned festivities to mark the unique occasion.

HAL cruise itineraries 2024-2025-2026 review

San Diego is HAL's principal West Coast USA homeport since the 1990s. HAL's 2023-2024 schedule includes two "solar eclipse" voyages (ms Koningsdam and ms Zaandam) for total viewing during the eclipse over Mexico on April 8th (2024). Zaandam's 14-day Solar "Eclipse Cruise" (departure March 30th, 2024) visits Mazatlan on April 8th. Koningsdam's 22-day "Solar Eclipse Cruise" (San Diego to Vancouver relocation itinerary) departs on April 5th and will be at sea on April 8th.

Pacific Coast, Mexico, Hawaii, and Panama Canal sailings are operated by 6 ships (39 departures), and are either San Diego roundtrips or begin/end in the port.

(Volendam) 12-day "Historic Baja & Sea of Cortez" voyage departs on December 10th, 2023, and explores Baha Peninsula. The roundtrip from San Diego visits La Paz, Loreto, and Vallarta.

Highlights of HAL's MEXICO 2024 program (all roundtrips from San Diego) include:

  • 3 ships (Koningsdam, Volendam, Zaandam)
  • all 7-day "Mexican Riviera" voyages feature calls at Puerto Vallarta, Mazatlan, and Cabo San Lucas.
  • all 10-, 11- and 12-day itineraries include the ports on the 7-day voyage, plus a combination of Guaymas , Loreto , Manzanillo , La Paz (Pichilingue) , Santa Rosalia , Topolobampo , Zihuatanejo .
  • a 5-day trip calls at Ensenada and Cabo San Lucas.

Highlights of HAL's HAWAII 2024 program include:

  • 2 ships (Koningsdam, Volendam)
  • the itineraries are roundtrip from San Diego CA/Vancouver BC, or between Vancouver-San Diego.
  • "Circle Hawaii" voyages range between 16-18 days:

17-day roundtrip from Vancouver with calls at Lahaina , Hilo , Honolulu , Kailua-Kona , and Nawiliwili, Hawaii . The 17-day roundtrip from San Diego also includes Ensenada .

16-day with calls at Lahaina, Hilo, Honolulu, Kona, and Ensenada.

18-day with calls at Lahaina, Hilo, Honolulu (overnight), Nawiliwili, Kona, and Ensenada.

HAL's 2024 Pacific Northwest and West Coast USA program features:

  • 6 ships (Eurodam, Koningsdam, Nieuw Amsterdam, Noordam, Volendam, Zaandam)
  • Itineraries are roundtrip from San Diego CA, roundtrip from Vancouver, or between Vancouver-San Diego.
  • 2 one-day "Pacific Northwest" getaways are offered in October 2023 & May 2024 between Vancouver-Seattle aboard ms Eurodam.
  • "Pacific Coast" itineraries are 4- and 5-day. The 4-day offers a call at Avalon (Santa Catalina Island CA) , Astoria Oregon , or 3 days at sea. The 5-day visits are a combination of Monterey CA , Santa Barbara , San Francisco CA , and Victoria BC Canada .
  • "Classic California Coast"/"Wine Country and Pacific Northwest" are 6- or 7-day. Ports of call include a combination of Ensenada, Monterey, Santa Barbara, San Francisco, and Victoria BC.
  • a special 5-day itinerary roundtrip from Vancouver BC on April 30th calls at Ketchikan AK and Prince Rupert, BC Canada .

HAL's Panama Canal 2024 transition program features:

  • 4 Panama Canal transit ships (Eurodam, Nieuw Amsterdam, Volendam, Zaandam)
  • voyages sail between Vancouver BC/ Seattle WA /San Diego and Fort Lauderdale Florida .
  • Transits range between 14-22 days and visit Aruba, California, Canada, Costa Rica, Colombia, Guatemala, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Grand Turk.

Most Panama Canal sailings visit Half Moon Cay Bahamas . Passengers enjoy a daylight canal transit, with commentary on the open decks.

HAL's South America 2024-2025 program (November through March) offers to visit Antarctica's glaciers and the Amazon's lush jungles with the ship Oosterdam . Itineraries (14 to 22 days in length) offer once-in-a-lifetime experiences like Machu Pichu's ruins (from Cusco ) and circumnavigating Cape Horn en route to the Antarctic Peninsula .

The 14-day "South America Passage" itinerary offers overnight stays in Buenos Aires , visits ports in Chile, Argentina, Falkland Islands UK, and Uruguay, and features scenic cruising through the Chilean Fjords , Strait of Magellan, Beagle and Cockburn Channels/Glacier Alley Patagonia , and rounding Cape Horn.

The 17-day "Panama Canal and Inca Discovery" connects the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, with a full transit through Panama Canal 's lakes and locks. The itinerary visits Grand Cayman, Panama, Ecuador, Peru, and Chile, with an overnight at Fuerte Amador (Panama City), and two nights at Callao-Lima (Peru), allowing extra time for guests to take a land tour to Machu Pichu.

The 22-day "South America and Antarctica" itinerary offers four memorable days exploring Antarctica and ports in Uruguay, Argentina, Falkland Islands UK, and Chile, with scenic cruising through the Chilean fjords, Drake Passage , and Beagle Channel/Glacier Alley Patagonia.

The 27-day "Amazon Explorer Cruise" (ship Zaandam ) visits 12 ports in the Caribbean and Brazil,. The itinerary includes an overnight at Manaus/Amazonas , several days cruising along the Amazon River and two equator crossings.

HAL's 2024-2025 West Coast cruise season includes sailings from San Diego, California , and Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada . These cruises offer guests the opportunity to explore various destinations without the need for international air travel, making it convenient for North American travelers. The cruise itineraries range from four-day voyages along the Pacific Coast to 21-day transits of the Panama Canal , with options for roundtrip cruises from San Diego or Vancouver, or cruises that begin or end in either of these two ports.

The itineraries are thoughtfully curated to include both popular and lesser-visited ports, showcasing the natural beauty, cultural diversity, and rich history of each region. Holland America Line is also featuring more Panama Canal Collectors' Voyages this season, which combine multiple itineraries into longer journeys ranging from 14 to 31 days, allowing guests to visit multiple regions in one trip at more economical fares compared to booking individual cruises.

Highlights of the 2024-2025 Mexico cruise season include itineraries on two ships, Koningsdam and Zaandam , with roundtrip cruises from San Diego. There are seven-day "Mexican Riviera" cruises that visit Puerto Vallarta , Mazatlan , and Cabo San Lucas , as well as a seven-day "Baja Peninsula and Sea of Cortez" itinerary that includes La Paz , Loreto , and Cabo San Lucas. There are also 10-day and 11-day itineraries that combine the ports from the seven-day itineraries with additional stops in Manzanillo, Mexico .

For the 2024-2025 Hawaii cruise season, Holland America Line offers cruises to Hawaii on Koningsdam and Zaandam, with roundtrip itineraries from either San Diego or Vancouver. These itineraries range from 16 to 18 days and include visits to various Hawaiian ports such as Honolulu , Lahaina , Hilo , and Kona , as well as Ensenada, Mexico . The overnight call at Honolulu allows guests extra time to explore popular sites such as Pearl Harbor, Waikiki Beach, and Diamond Head State Monument, or enjoy an authentic luau.

The 2024-2025 Pacific Northwest and Coast cruise season features five ships, including Eurodam , Koningsdam, Nieuw Amsterdam , Westerdam , and Zaandam, sailing along the West Coast of the United States. Itineraries include roundtrip cruises from San Diego or Vancouver or cruises between Vancouver and San Diego. There are four to seven-day itineraries that visit ports such as Avalon , Santa Barbara , San Francisco , Astoria , and Victoria, offering opportunities to explore the beautiful Pacific Northwest and California coast.

For the 2024-2025 Panama Canal cruise season, Holland America Line offers three ships, Eurodam, Nieuw Amsterdam, and Zaandam, with itineraries that sail between Vancouver, Seattle, San Diego, and Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Guests can enjoy a daylight transit of the Panama Canal with commentary on the open decks, providing insights into this amazing man-made marvel. The itineraries range from 14 to 21 days and include calls at various destinations such as Aruba, California, Canada, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Mexico, Panama, and Turks and Caicos. Many Panama Canal cruises also include a call at Half Moon Cay , Holland America Line's private island in the Bahamas, known for its pristine beaches and natural beauty.

HAL's 2025-2026  Panama Canal  and Hawaii cruises depart from 5 North American homeports, featuring sailings on 5 distinct ships. The upcoming season introduces 6 diverse Panama Canal cruises, boasting several inaugural experiences. Notable additions include the inclusion of the  port of Acajutla, El Salvador , on most Panama Canal sailings. Additionally, guests have the opportunity to embark on the Pinnacle-Class ship  Koningsdam  for its maiden transit through the canal. Furthermore,  Zuiderdam offers new departures from  Miami  for those seeking to traverse the canal aboard this vessel. Spanning from 15 to 22 days, these voyages cater to travelers seeking varied vacation durations.

In Hawaii, the debut of  Nieuw Amsterdam  marks a significant addition, as it offers roundtrip itineraries from  San Diego, California . Joining Nieuw Amsterdam are Koningsdam and  Zaandam , embarking on island-hopping adventures that typically include an overnight stay in  Honolulu , Hawaii's captivating capital. These Panama Canal and Hawaii cruises are available from October 2025 through April 2026, with durations ranging from 15 to 22 days.

Highlights of the 2025-2026 Panama Canal Cruise Season:

  • Cruises available aboard  Eurodam , Koningsdam, and Zuiderdam.
  • Departures from  Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada ;  Seattle, Washington ; San Diego, California; or Miami or  Fort Lauderdale, Florida .
  • Daylight transit of the Panama Canal with informative commentary on open decks.
  • Itineraries include calls in Aruba, California, Canada, Colombia, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Mexico, Panama, and Turks and Caicos.
  • Select sailings offer multiple embarkation or disembarkation options, such as Fort Lauderdale to San Diego, Seattle, or Vancouver.
  • Select cruises include a call at Acajutla, a new port for Holland America Line, offering excursions to well-preserved Mayan ruins, volcanoes, and cacao plantations, as well as opportunities to explore El Salvador further.
  • Many itineraries feature a visit to  Half Moon Cay , Holland America Line's private island in the Bahamas.

Highlights of the 2025-2026 Hawaii Cruise Season:

  • Cruises aboard Koningsdam, Nieuw Amsterdam, and Zaandam, with Nieuw Amsterdam making its Hawaii debut.
  • Guests sailing on Nieuw Amsterdam can indulge in the culinary delights of the ship's newest restaurant, Morimoto by Sea. Guests on Koningsdam or Zaandam can enjoy the restaurant menu during special pop-up dinners.
  • Itineraries range from roundtrip voyages from San Diego to Vancouver, or from Vancouver to San Diego.
  • The 17-day "Circle Hawaii" itinerary from Vancouver to San Diego visits  Nawiliwili ,  Kahului ,  Hilo , Honolulu (overnight), and  Kona . The roundtrip from San Diego includes an overnight or late departure from Honolulu, a call to  Ensenada, Mexico , and additional Hawaiian ports.
  • The 18-day "Circle Hawaii" itinerary, roundtrip from San Diego or Vancouver, includes stops at Kahului, Hilo, Honolulu (overnight), Nawiliwili, and Kona. The roundtrip from San Diego adds a call at Ensenada, while the roundtrip from Vancouver includes  Victoria, Canada .

HAL's Mexico and Pacific Coast seasons for 2025-2026 offer extended visits to distinctive ports such as  Loreto  and  Topolobampo  in Mexico, alongside a novel 7-day Great Bear Rainforest itinerary, a rarely explored route highlighting the natural beauty of British Columbia, Canada. These cruises operate from August 2025 to May 2026, ranging from single-day trips to 29-day Collectors' Voyages.

Known for its prominence in cruising in Alaska and the Pacific Northwest, Holland America Line introduces a 7-day "Great Bear Rainforest" itinerary, departing on October 5, 2025, and April 19, 2026, aboard  ms Noordam . This journey provides travelers seeking an intimate experience with an opportunity to immerse themselves in the culture, nature, and unique wildlife of  Ketchikan, Alaska , and  Prince Rupert ,  Nanaimo , and  Victoria  in British Columbia. Departing from  Seattle, Washington , the roundtrip voyage includes stops in Ketchikan before venturing south to explore various ports in British Columbia, with an overnight stay in Prince Rupert. The ship then embarks on a scenic cruise through Greenville Channel, past Bella Bella's First Nations village, Johnstone Strait, and Seymour Narrows, offering guests a chance to observe wildlife such as whales, eagles, and the rare Kermode bear, known as the spirit bear. A maiden call at Nanaimo and visits to popular Victoria allow guests to immerse themselves in diverse communities in British Columbia.

Additional itineraries along the Pacific Coast showcase the region's stunning landscapes, sailing from  San Diego, California , to Seattle or  Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada . These cruises include stops at popular ports like  Astoria, Oregon ,  Santa Barbara, California , and  Ensenada, Mexico , with select itineraries featuring overnight stays in  San Francisco, California .

For those seeking sunny escapes, Holland America Line's Mexico season offers roundtrip cruises from San Diego or between San Diego and Vancouver, stopping at iconic Mexican ports like  Cabo San Lucas  and  Puerto Vallarta , as well as lesser-known destinations such as  Guaymas  and  Santa Rosalia, Mexico . Late-night stops in  Loreto  and  Topolobampo  provide opportunities for exploration and scenic appreciation.

Highlights of the 2025-2026 Pacific Coast Season include a variety of itineraries on  Eurodam ,  Koningsdam ,  Nieuw Amsterdam , Noordam, and  Zaandam , ranging from one-day getaways to longer voyages. The Mexico Season, featuring Nieuw Amsterdam and Zaandam, offers 7-day "Mexican Riviera" and "Baja Peninsula" cruises, among others.

Alaska 2024-2025 voyages and cruisetours

A new 28-day Arctic Circle itinerary leads the 2024 Alaska season sailings. The cruise by ms Westerdam from Seattle WA departs on June 9th, 2024, in time for the summer solstice and features 12 Alaskan ports.

Two 14-day sailings from Vancouver BC Canada cover 8 ports in Alaska, with departures by ms Nieuw Amsterdam on May 5th and ms Noordam on September 15th.

The program also includes 117x 7-day voyages (ms Eurodam, ms Koningsdam, and ms Zaandam) between April-September 2024.

All HAL Alaskan voyages visit one or more of the glacier destinations: College Fjord, Dawes Glacier, Glacier Bay National Park , Hubbard Glacier , and Twin Sawyer Glaciers of Tracy Arm .

HAL's Alaska 2025 schedule (April thru October) was open for booking in July 2023. The program is based on 6 ships (Koningsdam, Eurodam, Nieuw Amsterdam, Noordam, Westerdam, Zaandam) and roundtrip itineraries leaving from homeports Seattle WA and Vancouver BC Canada; or between Whittier/Anchorage AK and Vancouver BC.

Signature itineraries include 28-day “Alaska Arctic Circle Solstice Cruise" (ship Westerdam/June 8, 2025), 14-day “Great Alaskan Explorer” (Vancouver roundtrip), 7-day "Glacier Discovery” (Northbound and Southbound itineraries between Whittier and Vancouver, ships Noordam, Nieuw Amsterdam). 7-day “Alaska Inside Passage Cruise” (Vancouver roundtrip, ships Koningsdam, Nieuw Amsterdam, Zaandam), 7-day “Alaskan Explorer” (Seattle roundtrip, ships Eurodam, Westerdam).

HAL's Alaska Cruisetours 2024 program features the new "Klondike Gold Tour" (in Dawson City, Yukon Canada) and upgraded accommodations at McKinley Chalet Resort (in Denali NP). As part of the resort's enhancements, 28x river-view accommodations received step-out balconies, all (84x) Denali Suites were completely refurbished, and a new Deluxe Room category was introduced (45x non-balcony accommodations) offering suite amenities.

  • HAL's "Klondike Gold Tour" is complimentary for all tourists booked on select "Alaska Denali and Yukon Cruisetours". The land tour offers exploration of the Discovery Claim National Historic Site (where the Klondike Gold Rush started in 1896) and the "Gold Dredge 4" along Bonanza Creek Road 13 (utilized for gold mining in the period 1913-1959).
  • HAL also introduced Klondike Gold Rush-themed onboard activities and shore excursions in Skagway (visiting the Gold Rush Training Camp, engaging in gold panning, White Pass & Yukon Route Railroad travel to Liarsville Gold Camp, exploring the Gold Rush Cemetery and Historic Skagway Inn/the city's largest brothel during that era).

HAL's Alaska 2024 Yukon and Denali Cruisetours have durations of 9 to 18 days and encompass either a 3- or 4-day "Inside Passage Cruise" (ships Koningsdam or Zaandam) or a 7-day "Glacier Discovery Cruise" (ships Nieuw Amsterdam or Noordam), along with a 2- or 3-night stay at Denali NP and additional city visits.

Canada and New England USA 2024-2025 program

HAL's 2024 Canada and New England program groups 29 voyages (ranging from 7-day getaways to longer itineraries) and is based on homeporting in Boston (Massachusetts USA) . An extended roundtrip-Boston itinerary visits destinations in Iceland and Greenland.

The season runs from April thru October (2024) and two ships ( Volendam and Zuiderdam ) sail on a series of mainly 7-day "Canada and New England Discovery" voyages. Volendam's longer (10- and 11-day) voyages visit Newfoundland, while a 24-day itinerary adds Greenland plus a circumnavigation of Iceland.

A 24-day voyage (departing on July 27th on Volendam) sails roundtrip from Boston and circumnavigates Iceland. The trip visits 6 ports in Iceland plus 10 others (in Maine USA, Canada's Nova Scotia, Labrador, Newfoundland, and Greenland).

Volendam is scheduled to sail between Boston and Montreal (Quebec Canada) in the summer and fall (2024) on a series of 7-day "Canada & New England Discovery" itineraries. With weekend departures, they visit Bar Harbor , Quebec City , Charlottetown (Prince Edward Island) , Sydney NS , and Halifax .

Zuiderdam's 7-day "Canada and New England Discovery" itinerary is between Boston and Quebec City, with weekend departures from/overnight stay in Quebec City (at the beginning/end of the trip) and call ports Bar Harbor, Charlottetown, Sydney, Halifax.

Volendam's 7-day "Historic Coasts" roundtrip from Boston departs on July 20th and visits Portland, Bar Harbor, Saint John NB , Halifax, Sydney.

Volendam's longer "Newfoundland & New England Discovery" itineraries (between Boston and Montreal) are with lengths 10 days (Quebec City, Baie-Comeau, Havre-Saint-Pierre, Corner Brook, St. John's, Halifax, Portland) and 11-days (Portland, Saint John, Corner Brook, Charlottetown, Saguenay).

Holland America's Volendam and Zuiderdam ships are small enough to cruise the Saint Lawrence River and visit Quebec City and Montreal on nearly every voyage.

Volendam's 13- and 14-day relocation voyages (RepositionCruises.com) are along the Atlantic Coast and between Quebec Canada and Florida USA (Montreal to Fort Lauderdale/Port Everglades ) in 2024 (April and October). Both sailings include an overnight in Quebec City.

Zuiderdam's 11-day Atlantic Coast repositioning (Quebec City to Fort Lauderdale) in October (2024) adds Charleston (South Carolina) .

HAL's 2025 Canada and New England Season offers longer voyages, maiden ports, and a 25-day "Legendary Voyage" to Greenland and Iceland. MS Zuiderdam and MS Volendam provide a range of cruises exploring Canada, New England, Greenland, and Iceland from May to October.

MS Zuiderdam offers 7-day departures showcasing the Atlantic Coast's seafood, maritime history, charming towns, and natural beauty. Volendam's itineraries last ten to eleven days, emphasizing English and French influences at various ports, including fall foliage in September.

MS Volendam's 25-day "Canada, New England, Greenland, and Iceland" Legendary Voyage departs from Boston MA on July 12, featuring stops in Iceland, Greenland, Maine, and Canada, including a new port in Eastport, Maine .

Zuiderdam's 7-day itineraries include "Canada & New England: UNESCO Sites & Quebecois Nights" and "Canada & New England Circle: New Brunswick" between Boston and Quebec City , with late-night departures on select dates.

Volendam offers 10- and 11-day itineraries between Boston and Montreal during the summer and fall. An 11-day "Canada and New England Circle" itinerary is added, departing from Boston or Montreal and visiting various ports.

Repositioning cruises of 14 days are available between Montreal and Fort Lauderdale , including the maiden port of Yorktown (Williamsburg) . Zuiderdam offers a 15-day cruise from Fort Lauderdale to Quebec City in May, with late-night departures from Newport, Maine, and Charlottetown .

GRAND / COLLECTORS' VOYAGES 2024-2025 (Australia and New Zealand)

In Sept 2022 HAL announced the 94-day "Grand Australia and New Zealand Voyage 2024" (San Diego roundtrip on MS Volendam ), leaving on January 3, 2024.

The 3-month-long Australian expedition features 43x total call ports, two Transpacific crossings (via Hawaii), visiting Indonesia's Komodo Island , cruising the Great Barrier Reef (2x days), 4x overnight port stays ( Fremantle-Perth , Sydney NSW , Auckland NZ , Papeete Tahiti ), cruising NZ's Fiordland NP (Milford Sound cruising).

GRAND VOYAGE 2024 includes two shorter itinerary segments - 58-day San Diego to Sydney NSW, and the return 36-day Sydney to San Diego.

The 14-day itineraries aboard  Noordam (November 2025 to March 2026) provide seamless travel between Australia and New Zealand, allowing guests to experience the best destinations in the region while enjoying Holland America Line's renowned service and authentic, localized programming. The introduction of New Collectors' Voyages combines a 2-week cruise with an epic Legendary Voyage to the South Pacific, extending vacation options up to 50 days across multiple cruising regions.

Departing from  Sydney, Australia , or sailing between Sydney and  Auckland, New Zealand , Holland America Line's Australia and New Zealand cruises offer a variety of highlights for guests to enjoy:

  • All cruises are aboard Noordam.
  • 14-day "Australia and New Zealand" itineraries between Sydney and Auckland, with departures in November, February, and March.
  • 14-day "New Zealand Discovery" roundtrip from Sydney departing on December 7, 2025.
  • 14-day "South Australia Discovery Holiday" roundtrip from Sydney departing on December 21, 2025.
  • All itineraries featuring New Zealand include scenic cruising in the picturesque Milford Sound within  Fiordland National Park .

Guests can indulge in the Holland America Line's Global Fresh Fish Program, offering native fresh fish and local ingredients onboard, including New Zealand green-lipped mussels, Tasmanian Atlantic salmon, Sydney rock oysters, and Tasmanian meat pies.

Noordam is due to host 5 Collectors' Voyages, combining back-to-back, non-repeating itineraries for a seamless exploration of multiple areas:

  • 41-day "South Pacific Crossing & New Zealand" Collectors' Voyage from  Seattle, Washington , to Auckland, departing on October 12, 2025.
  • 28-day "New Zealand & South Australia Discovery" Collectors' Voyage roundtrip from Sydney, departing on December 7, 2025.
  • 42-day "South Australia & South Pacific Islands" Collectors' Voyage from Sydney to Auckland, departing on December 21, 2025.
  • 42-day "South Pacific Islands & New Zealand" Collectors' Voyage roundtrip from Sydney, departing on January 4, 2026.
  • 50-day "New Zealand & South Pacific Crossing" Collectors' Voyage from Auckland to Seattle, departing on March 1, 2026.

EUROPE 2024-2025

HAL's Northern Europe 2024 schedule (April thru November) lists 4x boats (Nieuw Statendam, Oosterdam, Rotterdam, Zuiderdam) and 7- to 35-day itineraries.

The program is based on 11x departure ports (Amsterdam, Ijmuiden, Rotterdam, Copenhagen, Barcelona, Civitavecchia-Rome, Trieste-Venice, Piraeus-Athens, Reykjavik, and the USA"s Fort Lauderdale FL and Boston MA) and 9x overnight ports (Barcelona, Civitavecchia, Marghera-Venice, Haifa, Istanbul, Reykjavik, Piraeus, Rhodes, Valletta) and 33 late-evening departure ports.

The destinations include Baltic-Scandinavia (Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Germany), Iberia-Canary Islands, Mediterranean (also Holy Land/Israel), as well as Atlantic Europe (UK-British Isles, Iceland and Greenland). Mediterranean itineraries (7- to 14-day) visit ports and islands in Greece, Turkey, Israel, Tunisia, Adriatic (Italy, Croatia, Montenegro), France, and Spain.

Two HAL liners in 2024 (Nieuw Statendam in April, and Zuiderdam in May) have scheduled Transatlantic crossings between Europe and North America (USA and Canada) along the way visiting North Atlantic destinations in Greenland and Iceland, Bermuda, the UK (England, Scotland, Ireland, Guernsey), Northern Ireland, France, Belgium, Norway.

HAL's 2025 European season has many longer (over 10 days) voyages, more sailings to Iceland, and a total of 62 overnight port calls or late-night departures. Europe 2025 schedule features Port Rotterdam as a homeport of 2 ships (ms Rotterdam, ms Nieuw Statendam) for roundtrips to Northern Europe/Baltic. The program also introduces itineraries to Holy Land , Iberia, Iceland and the UK. The 28-day Legendary Voyage "Arctic Circle Crossing" visits Greenland, Iceland, North Cape , and Scotland.

From April to November (2025), 3 ships (Oosterdam, Nieuw Statendam, Rotterdam) have a full European season, while ms Zuiderdam sails the popular 35-day "Voyage of the Vikings". The itineraries range from 7 to 42 days, prioritizing destinations in Northern Europe/Baltic, British Isles, Canary Islands, and the Mediterranean.

Key highlights of HAL's 2025 Europe season include:

  • 10x homeports/departure cities
  • 11x overnight ports
  • 32x late-night departures
  • Northern Europe deployment - 2 ships (Rotterdam, Nieuw Statendam)
  • Mediterranean ship - Oosterdam
  • Canary Islands ship - Nieuw Statendam (a 14-day voyage)
  • Transatlantic "Voyage of the Vikings" (ship Zuiderdam, also offered in smaller segments)

Collectors' Voyages are B2Bs/combined itineraries allowing tourists to spend more time in Europe.

CARIBBEAN 2024-2025 itinerary program

HAL's Caribbean program is based mainly on ex-Florida roundtrips (7- to 21 days) and 6 ships - all leaving from homeport Port Everglades/Fort Lauderdale Florida .

The program (running between October and April) features voyages that offer a day cruising in the Panama Canal's Gatun Lake . All the 6x HAL Caribbean ships (Nieuw Rotterdam, Eurodam, Nieuw Amsterdam, Nieuw Statendam, Volendam, Zaandam) visit the private island Half Moon Cay Bahamas.

  • 3-4-5-day "Bahamas Sampler" itinerary to Half Moon Cay and Nassau (ships Eurodam, Nieuw Amsterdam, Nieuw Rotterdam)
  • 7-day "Eastern Caribbean" itinerary to Grand Turk, San Juan Puerto Rico, St Thomas USVI and Half Moon Cay (ships Eurodam, Nieuw Amsterdam, Nieuw Statendam, Nieuw Rotterdam)
  • 7-8-day "Western Caribbean" itinerary to Belize City, Falmouth Jamaica, Ocho Rios Jamaica, Grand Cayman Island, Cozumel Mexico, Half Moon Cay and Nassau (ships Nieuw Amsterdam, Nieuw Statendam, Nieuw Rotterdam)
  • 7-9-10-11-14-day "Southern Caribbean" itinerary to Amber Cove Dominicana, Bridgetown Barbados, Oranjestad Aruba, Kralendijk Bonaire, Willemstad Curacao, Philipsburg St Maarten, Fort-de-France Martinique, Castries St Lucia, Basseterre St Kitts, Pointe-a-Pitre Guadeloupe, St Georges Grenada, Port-of-Spain Trinidad, Half Moon Cay, San Juan Puerto Rico, St Thomas USVI (ships Eurodam, Nieuw Amsterdam, Nieuw Statendam, Nieuw Rotterdam, Volendam, Zaandam)
  • 6-7-day "Tropical Caribbean" itinerary to Amber Cove, Grand Turk, Half Moon Cay (ships Eurodam, Nieuw Amsterdam, Nieuw Statendam, Nieuw Rotterdam)
  • 10-11-day "Partial Panama Canal" itinerary to Cartagena Colombia, Colon Panama, Puerto Limon Costa Rica, Oranjestad Aruba, Half Moon Cay, Panama Canal partial transit (ship Eurodam)

Many Caribbean itineraries can be extended/combined into B2Bs (Collectors Voyages) and booked as discount-priced B2Bs/back-to-backs ranging between 13-21 days.

7x HAL ships (Eurodam, Nieuw Amsterdam, Nieuw Statendam, Rotterdam, Volendam, Zuiderdam, Zaandam) are deployed in the Caribbean in 2022-2023 offering 5- to 14-day roundtrips from Fort Lauderdale. Some of the island-hopping itineraries include a day of scenic cruising in Panama Canal's Gatun Lake ) and all call at Half Moon Cay.

Eastern Caribbean

  • 7-day (Eurodam, Nieuw Amsterdam, Nieuw Statendam, Volendam, Zuiderdam, Rotterdam) with call ports Grand Turk, San Juan, St Thomas USVI, Half Moon Cay
  • 5-day (Nieuw Amsterdam) with call ports Amber Cove, Half Moon Cay

Western Caribbean

  • 7-day (Eurodam, Nieuw Amsterdam, Nieuw Statendam, Zuiderdam, Rotterdam) with call ports Cozumel, Falmouth or Ocho Rios, George Town/Grand Cayman, Key West FL, Half Moon Cay

Southern Caribbean

  • 7-day (Nieuw Amsterdam, Nieuw Statendam, Zuiderdam) with call ports Oranjestad Aruba, Willemstad Curacao, Half Moon Cay
  • 9-10-11-14-day (Eurodam, Nieuw Amsterdam, Nieuw Statendam, Volendam, Zaandam, Rotterdam) visit the islands St Kitts, Barbados, St Lucia, Martinique, Bonaire, St Maarten, St Georges, Amber Cove Dominicana, Aruba, Curacao, Grand Turk, Half Moon Cay, Puerto Rico, St Thomas USVI

Tropical Caribbean

  • 7-day (Nieuw Amsterdam, Nieuw Statendam) with call ports Amber Cove, Grand Turk, Half Moon Cay, Key West

Longer Caribbean itineraries are scheduled for winter 2024-2025, including visits to Bermuda. The program is based on two homeports - Boston (Massachusetts) and Port Everglades/Fort Lauderdale (Florida) , 5- to 21-day itineraries, and partial Panama Canal transits ( Gatun Lake ).

In the Caribbean (October 2024 thru March 2025), HAL has 6 ships (Eurodam, Nieuw Amsterdam, Nieuw Statendam, Rotterdam, Volendam, Zuiderdam). Most roundtrips are from Florida (Fort Lauderdale), and two new itineraries are out of Boston. Most voyages visit Half Moon Cay Bahamas. Evening departures from Aruba, Curacao, Puerto Rico, and St Maarten are scheduled for selected/longer itineraries visiting more islands.

Australia, New Zealand and South Pacific 2024-2025 itinerary program

In the 2024-2025 season, HAL is offering 3 of its ships to explore the stunning landscapes and natural wonders of Australia, New Zealand, and the South Pacific. MS Westerdam is stationed in the region, while ms Koningsdam and ms Zaandam embark on longer Legendary Voyages to the South Pacific and Hawaii.

Westerdam kicks off her journey with a westward South Pacific crossing in October 2024, followed by the iconic Australia Circumnavigation. From December 2024 to March 2025, the ship operates a series of 14-day departures from Sydney, Australia , or between Auckland, New Zealand , and Sydney. Zaandam's "Tales of the South Pacific" voyage in September 2024 takes passengers from Vancouver, Canada , to San Diego, California , or on a roundtrip from San Diego. Koningsdam's "Hawaii, Tahiti, and Marquesas" voyage in February 2025 is a roundtrip from San Diego.

Holland America Line's Legendary Voyages are extended journeys lasting from 25 to 59 days, combining the elegance of a Grand Voyage with itineraries that feature an extensive selection of ports to enhance the experience in each destination. Most of these Legendary Voyages sail roundtrip or to/from a North American homeport, allowing travelers the convenience of seeing the world from their doorstep with a domestic flight and easy embarkation.

The Australia and New Zealand 2024-2025 Season offers several exciting highlights, which include:

  • A remarkable 35-day "Australia Circumnavigation" voyage departing on November 17, 2024. This roundtrip journey from Sydney aboard Westerdam takes guests to 16 ports around the continent of Australia, featuring scenic cruising in the Great Barrier Reef , Ribbon Reef, Far North Regions, and a visit to Komodo Island . Overnight stays are enjoyed at Fremantle (Perth), Australia , and Hobart, Tasmania , with a late-night departure from Adelaide.
  • From January to March 2025, Westerdam presents 14-day "Australia and New Zealand" cruises between Auckland and Sydney. These sailings encompass six ports in New Zealand and include a call at Hobart. All itineraries offer scenic cruising in Fiordland National Park , while select dates also feature an exploration of Milford Sound.
  • An exceptional 14-day "New Zealand Holiday" cruise, departing on December 22, 2024, is available as a roundtrip journey from Sydney. Guests have the opportunity to spend the holidays exploring 6 ports across New Zealand, including an overnight call at Wellington . The holiday itinerary also includes scenic cruising in Fiordland National Park and Milford Sound.

The South Pacific 2024-2025 Season offers several exciting highlights, including:

  • A remarkable voyage called "Tales of the South Pacific" aboard Zaandam is available as a 51-day or 56-day itinerary. The 51-day journey departs from San Diego on September 30, 2024, and returns to the same port. Alternatively, the 56-day cruise begins in Vancouver and concludes in San Diego, departing on September 25. This expedition takes passengers on a counterclockwise route around the South Pacific, featuring 20 stops at various destinations such as Hawaii, Kiribati, Samoa, Fiji, Tonga, Niue, Cook and Society Islands, Marquesas, and Tahiti. Guests have ample time to explore with overnight stays in Honolulu, Hawaii, and Papeete, Tahiti, as well as late-night departures from Honolulu and Suva, Fiji.
  • Westerdam presents a 23-day "South Pacific Crossing" from Seattle, Washington , to Sydney, departing on October 24, 2024. This Pacific Ocean crossing encompasses seven ports in Hawaii, New Caledonia, Fiji, and American Samoa.
  • Koningsdam offers a 35-day "Hawaii, Tahiti and Marquesas" journey departing on February 15, 2025, from San Diego and returning to the same port. This roundtrip expedition makes four stops in Hawaii and 6 additional island visits in the South Pacific. Noteworthy overnight stays include Honolulu , Raiatea , Moorea , and Papeete .
  • Westerdam presents another remarkable option with a 29-day "South Pacific Crossing" from Sydney to Vancouver, departing on March 30, 2025. This itinerary showcases 12 ports in Hawaii, American Samoa, Fiji, and New Caledonia. Guests enjoy an overnight stay in Honolulu and late-night departures from Lahaina and Kona in Hawaii, as well as Suva in Fiji and Noumea in New Caledonia.

The Australia, New Zealand, and South Pacific Collectors' Voyages range from 43 to 58 days. These voyages offer a combination of back-to-back itineraries without repeating ports, providing guests with an extensive and varied journey. Additionally, these voyages offer exceptional value per day for guests.

Asia 2024-2025 itinerary program

HAL's 2024-2025 Asian season is based on homeporting in Hong Kong China , Yokohama-Tokyo Japan and Singapore .

MS Noordam sails 9 different 14-day itineraries around Japan, Korea, Thailand, Taiwan, Vietnam, Indonesia, the Philippines, Cambodia. The voyages feature late-night departures and overnight ports allowing extra time for sampling the local culture, cuisine, and nightlife of the region.

MS Westerdam sails Asia on a 53-day Legendary Voyage ("Majestic Japan") roundtrip from Seattle WA . Travelers can visit the Far East with a North American flight, easy embarkation, and a jetlag-free journey spanning several time zones.

Longer Legendary Voyages on 2 ships:

  • LEGENDARY VOYAGE: 53-/52-day "Majestic Japan" aboard ms Westerdam departing September 1 or 2, 2024, either roundtrip Seattle or between Vancouver BC Canada and Seattle. Featuring 21 ports, 13 calls throughout Japan, and overnights at Yokohama-Tokyo, Kobe, and Honolulu Hawaii .
  • LEGENDARY VOYAGE: 28-day "Coral Triangle, Volcanoes and The Great Barrier Reef" departing January 5, 2025, roundtrip from Singapore aboard ms Noordam that explores 10 ports in 5 countries, including Indonesia and the Philippines, with scenic cruising in the Great Barrier Reef , Torres Strait, and past Kumba and Krakatau volcanoes.

Highlights of HAL's Asia 2024-2025 season include:

ms Noordam (deployment September 2024-April 2025) offers overnights in Yokohama, Kobe-Osaka, Laem Chabang-Bangkok, and Da Nang. The voyages visit 49 ports, including 24 in Japan.

  • 13-day "North Pacific Crossing" from Vancouver to Yokohama (Sept 29, 2024)
  • 14-day "Circle Japan" roundtrip from Yokohama (3 itineraries)
  • 14-day "Japan, Taiwan and the Philippines" from Yokohama to Singapore
  • 14-day "Far East Discovery" from Hong Kong to Singapore
  • 14-day "Far East Discovery Holiday" roundtrip from Singapore
  • 14-day "Indonesian Discovery"
  • 14-day "Japan and Taiwan" roundtrip from Yokohama
  • 14-day "Japan and South Korea Discovery" roundtrip from Yokohama.

Asia Collectors' Voyages offer an ideal option for enthusiastic adventurers who desire a more extensive cruise experience, ranging from 27 to 42 days. These voyages are tailored for guests who want to explore various destinations without repeating itineraries, providing excellent value per day.

HAL's extended Legendary Voyages (25 to 59 days) combine a Grand Voyage with carefully curated itineraries. Most of these Legendary Voyages are roundtrips with one-way routes to/from a North American homeport, allowing travelers to embark on a global adventure conveniently starting from their own doorstep, with the added convenience of domestic flights.

Panama Canal Sunfarer itinerary

HAL is among the few companies that offer partial Panama Canal cruises (ships Eurodam and Volendam) that combine popular Caribbean islands with Panama's Gatun Lake . The itinerary's "Panama Canal" segment features passing through the Gatun Locks and sailing in the Gatun Lake.

Next table shows the "Panama Canal Sunfarer" itinerary (11-day roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale ).

Prices vary between USD 750-1200 per person (with double occupancy) depending on ship and dates/season.

Holland America Line itinerary changes, ship deployments, homeports

IMPORTANT: In July 2020, MS Amsterdam (now Bolette) and ms Rotterdam (now Borealis) were sold to Fred Olsen Cruise Lines .

IMPORTANT: In July 2020, MS Maasdam (now CFC Renaissance) and MS Veendam (now Aegean Majesty) were sold to Seajets Greece.

Holland America Line's itineraries themed "Signature Experiences"

HAL's new culturally themed "Signature Experiences" are available on select voyages departing out of Montreal (Quebec Canada) and in Europe - from Amsterdam, Barcelona, Copenhagen, Civitavecchia-Rome and Venice.

  • These are pre-cruise packages created exclusively for HAL with included evening event (themed on culture or culinary), 2-night luxury hotel stay and bus transfers to the cruise ship. Guests booking a suite cabin on these eligible cruises receive the package complimentarily, but as space is limited reservations are required.
  • The pre-cruise "Signature Experiences" tour packages for non-suite passengers as prices range between USD 700-1000 per person (double occupancy). Taxes and port fees are additional.
  • "Taste of Montreal" pre-cruise tour package is on select Canada New England cruises from Montreal. The tour visits the city's most popular sights. The package also includes a 2-night hotel stay and complimentary ship transfers. HAL passengers visit Place Ville Marie and its observation deck (Au Sommet Place Ville Marie) for fabulous city views. The tour culminates with the Pointe-a-Calliere museum where a private party with appetizers and an open bar is held.
  • Port of Amsterdam Holland - the pre-cruise tour package includes an evening at Rijksmuseum - after-hours private tour, cocktail reception with hors-d'oeuvres in the museum's foyer, Rijksmuseum Honor Gallery tour, followed by a 3-course dinner in its cafe.
  • Port Barcelona Spain - the pre-cruise tour package includes an evening at Casa Batllo - private tour, followed by an informal dinner with tapas and drinks while enjoying flamenco music by Son de Cajon.
  • Port Copenhagen Denmark - the pre-cruise tour package includes a night at Kronborg Castle (UNESCO Heritage Site) where guests are entertained by local actors providing a history of Shakespeare's Hamlet, then follow appetizers and beverages.
  • Port Civitavecchia (Rome Italy) - the pre-cruise tour package "A Night Out in Ancient Rome" includes an evening at Casa dei Cavalieri di Rodi. The formal dinner is on a terrace overlooking the Roman Forum. After in appetizers and prosecco, guests enjoy a private tour of the Colosseum lead by an expert guide.
  • Port Venice Italy - the pre-cruise tour package "An Evening on the Grand Canal" includes an evening canal cruise to the entrance of a privately owned palace overlooking the Grand Canal. The guests enjoy a formal dinner with appetizers, drinks, and live music, all in the company of the countess or member of her noble family.

Signature Experiences" pre-cruise tour packages for departure ports in Australia, New Zealand, South America, and Asia will be added soon.

HAL's 2023 Grand World Voyage, 2023 Grand South America and Antarctica Voyage

HAL's world cruises (themed "2022 Grand Africa Voyage", "2023 Grand World Voyage" and "2023 Grand South America and Antarctica Voyage") range from 71 to 127 days and visit destinations across 6 continents. All itineraries are roundtrips from Fort Lauderdale (Port Everglades, Florida) .

Grand Africa Voyage 2022

  • 71 days departing October 10, 2022, and sailing roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale FL aboard ms Zaandam on clockwise navigation around the continent.
  • 4 overnights: Aqaba-Petra, Cape Town (two nights), Zanzibar, and Victoria (Mahe Island)
  • 25 ports in 21 different countries and territories
  • daylight Suez Canal transit en route to Aqaba, Jordan
  • safari and wildlife opportunities
  • 2 days at Cape Town to explore Table Mountain, Kulala Desert Lodge, Chapman's Peak Drive, Nelson Mandela's prison cell.

Grand World Voyage 2023

  • 127 days departing January 3, 2023, aboard ms Zaandam roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale FL on an itinerary that circles the globe on a westwardly route.
  • ms Zaandam crosses the South Pacific to Australia and New Zealand before sailing up Africa's west coast and heading to Northern Europe.
  • 61 ports in 30 different countries and island nations
  • 8 overnights: Fuerte Amador (Panama City), Papeete, Sydney, Hobart, Adelaide, Fremantle (Perth), Cape Town, and Amsterdam
  • 20 calls around Africa with opportunities for safari experiences.

Grand South America and Antarctica 2023

  • 74 days departing January 3, 2023, aboard ms Volendam roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale FL on an itinerary circling the continent on a counterclockwise route.
  • 34 ports in 16 different countries and island nations across 2 continents
  • 5 overnights: Fuerte Amador (Panama City), Manaus and Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, Buenos Aires (2 nights); Callao (Lima, 2 nights)
  • Daylight Panama Canal transit and opportunities to visit the Galapagos Islands , Machu Picchu, Patagonia, Iguazu Falls.
  • 4 days of scenic cruising in Antarctica
  • scenic cruising including the Chilean Fjords, Cape Horn, Amalia or Brujo Glacier, Strait of Magellan, Cockburn and Beagle channels.
  • 12 calls in Brazil and Amazon River cruising (inland) to Manaus.

HAL cruises to Cuba

HAL scheduled cruises to Cuba leaving roundtrip from Port Everglades/Fort Lauderdale (Florida USA) on MS Veendam .

HAL's 7-11-12-days long Cuban itineraries also visited other Caribbean ports of call. Prices started at USD 900 per person with double occupancy (inside cabin rates).

Note: According to the current Cuban law, US citizens of Cuban origin (born in Cuba) are not allowed to visit the island country (including on cruise ships). Regardless of their US citizenship status, Cuba-born Americans were denied booking on cruise itineraries visiting ports in Cuba. However, the situation changed in April 2016, after Carnival Corporation negotiated with the Cuban government for allowing ships with Cuban-born passengers, as such US citizens are allowed to visit the country on USA-Cuba charter flights. The Carnival-fathom line started Miami to Cuba cruises in May 2016.

Alaska Airlines offers regular nonstop flights to Havana from Los Angeles (California USA). An 80-min ling JetBlue flight from Fort Lauderdale (Florida) to Havana costs less than USD 100. Previously, air travel from the USA to Cuba was thought charter flights only.

On June 4, 2019, the US Government announced new regulations (economic sanctions) that ended group travel to Cuba, including via US-homeported cruise liners, effective immediately. The ban relates to "private and corporate aircraft, cruise ships, sailboats, fishing boats, and other similar aircraft and vessels". The US travel restrictions impacted hundreds of pre-scheduled cruise itineraries, which were adjusted to no longer stop in Cuban seaports.

Holland America related cruise news

HAL-Holland America Line’s Grand World Voyage 2026 (ship MS Volendam) opens for bookings

HAL-Holland America Line’s Grand World Voyage 2026 (ship MS Volendam) opens for bookings

HAL-Holland America Line has announced the opening of bookings for its 2026 Grand World Voyage. This ambitious 132-day cruise will take passengers on...

Carnival Corporation's fleet achieves 100% Starlink satellite connectivity

Carnival Corporation's fleet achieves 100% Starlink satellite connectivity

Carnival Corporation & plc, the world's largest cruise company, has announced that its entire fleet is now equipped with Starlink's high-speed...

HAL-Holland America's ship MS Rotterdam tests biofuel for reduced emissions

HAL-Holland America's ship MS Rotterdam tests biofuel for reduced emissions

HAL-Holland America Line has initiated a long-term biofuel trial on its flagship, ms Rotterdam, employing 100% low carbon intensity biofuel while...

HAL-Holland America Line introduces Glacier Guarantee for Alaskan cruises

HAL-Holland America Line introduces Glacier Guarantee for Alaskan cruises

HAL-Holland America Line has introduced a "Glacier Guarantee" to ensure guests have the opportunity to view one or more glaciers during their Alaska...

HAL-Holland America's ms Rotterdam sets sail with 100% biofuel for Norwegian Fjord cruises

HAL-Holland America's ms Rotterdam sets sail with 100% biofuel for Norwegian Fjord cruises

HAL-Holland America Line's flagship MS Rotterdam has embarked on a significant long-term trial utilizing 100% low carbon intensity biofuel during the...

HAL-Holland America extends Nieuw Statendam ship's homeporting in Dover UK to 2026

HAL-Holland America extends Nieuw Statendam ship's homeporting in Dover UK to 2026

HAL-Holland America Line has announced that its ship Nieuw Statendam will be homeported in Dover UK for a second consecutive year in 2026. This...

HAL-Holland America elevates Alaska cruising experience with 'Glacier Day' and enhanced programming

HAL-Holland America elevates Alaska cruising experience with 'Glacier Day' and enhanced programming

As part of its "We Love Alaska" onboard experience, HAL-Holland America Line is unveiling "Glacier Day" on its Alaska cruises, offering new...

Search underway for missing crew overboard from Holland America's cruise ship MS Rotterdam

Search underway for missing crew overboard from Holland America's cruise ship MS Rotterdam

A maritime search operation has been initiated following reports of a crew member going overboard from HAL-Holland America Line's ship ms...

HAL-Holland America Line achieves dual MSC&ASC certifications for Sustainable Seafood Sourcing

HAL-Holland America Line achieves dual MSC&ASC certifications for Sustainable Seafood Sourcing

HAL-Holland America Line has made maritime history by becoming the inaugural global cruise line to attain both Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) and...

HAL-Holland America changes World Cruise 2025 itinerary (ship Zuiderdam)

HAL-Holland America changes World Cruise 2025 itinerary (ship Zuiderdam)

HAL-Holland America Line has announced a revised itinerary for its 2025 Grand World Voyage aboard ms Zuiderdam, aiming to enhance safety and provide...

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The ultimate guide to Holland America cruise ships and itineraries

Ashley Kosciolek

Of the "Big Eight" cruise lines, Holland America Line is the one that prides itself most heavily on legacy. Among the other industry players, which are relatively new in comparison, Holland America stands out because of its longevity, having begun passenger operations in 1873 to ferry passengers across the Atlantic between The Netherlands and New York City.

Ships in the Holland America fleet — formerly the Nederlandsche-Amerikaansche Stoomvaart Maatschappij (Dutch-American Steamship Company) — carried immigrants from Europe to North America at regular intervals. As such, the line often attracts older cruisers and genealogy buffs looking to experience sea travel much like their grandparents, great-grandparents and even great-great grandparents did (albeit with more modern comforts). And veterans who found themselves on Holland America ships used as military transport during World War II often sail on the line's modern vessels as a way to reminisce.

But that doesn't mean the ships are stuffy , boring or limited to an older demographic. In fact, HAL ships are more modern than ever, with some of the newest hardware featuring high-tech theater shows, extensive art collections and contemporary music that even members of Generation Z are likely to appreciate. It's common to see multigenerational family groups on Holland America voyages.

For more cruise news, reviews and tips, sign up for TPG's new cruise newsletter .

holland america cruises history

Tied to the cruise line's rich backstory is a focus on quality and upholding high standards of service. The line's ships generally offer excellent food, tastefully designed decor and an impressive variety of music as entertainment.

Holland America cruises are considered mainstream and mass market, but they're not bargain-basement sailings. They fall in line with brands like Celebrity Cruises and Princess Cruises, meaning you'll pay slightly more for them than a Carnival Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean or Norwegian Cruise Line cruise. But Holland America sailings aren't luxury. (The slightly higher price point also means you won't feel like you're in the middle of a never-ending frat party or a resort geared to families.)

Here's what you need to know to determine if Holland America Line is right for your next cruise.

3 things TPG loves about Holland America Line

  • Delicious food that's carefully prepared with a focus on sustainability
  • Abundant live music options to suit many tastes
  • Extensive itineraries, from Alaska sailings that include land stays to lengthy world voyages

What we could do without

  • The stereotype that Holland America is only for passengers of a certain age

The Holland America fleet

holland america cruises history

With only 11 ships, the HAL fleet is on the small side when compared to the industry's biggest players, some of which have more than two dozen vessels. Holland America's ships are divided into four classes : R Class, Vista Class, Signature Class and Pinnacle Class.

From oldest to newest , the ships have gradually increased in size . However, the largest ones still accommodate fewer than half of the number of passengers carried by the world's largest ships — a nod to the fact that many of the line's most loyal customers prefer a more intimate experience.

There are only two R Class ships on the roster — Volendam and Zaandam, which are the line's two oldest and smallest vessels, each with room for about 1,400 passengers. Because R Class vessels are nearly 40% smaller than the line's largest ships, they offer fewer amenities, making them perfect for anyone whose focus is the destinations the ships visit rather than the onboard diversions. As such, these two vessels tend to sail to more far-flung locales, including world cruises.

Introduced between 2002 and 2006, the four ships — Zuiderdam, Oosterdam, Westerdam and Noordam — in Holland America's Vista Class are large enough for slightly more than 1,900 passengers at double occupancy. Like their smaller R Class fleetmates, they offer only two alternative restaurants (a steakhouse and an Italian eatery) in addition to complimentary buffet and main dining room venues.

Holland America's Signature Class, comprising Eurodam and Nieuw Amsterdam, represents the line's midsize offerings, with each vessel accommodating about 2,100 people. Like Pinnacle Class ships, those in this class are home to Pan-Asian restaurant Tamarind, in addition to the free options and for-fee Italian restaurant and steakhouse found on the line's smaller vessels.

But it was with Pinnacle Class ships that Holland America truly began to overhaul its offerings in terms of both dining and entertainment. Koningsdam, which debuted in 2016, brought with it the Grand Dutch Cafe (where you'll find the best grilled cheese at sea, along with delicious split pea soup) and Rudi's Sel de Mer, a seafood restaurant developed by chef and food artist Rudi Sodamin. It also boasts the Music Walk concept, a central thoroughfare that houses several performance spaces focusing on different genres of music.

While Rudi's and the Grand Dutch Cafe are only found on the line's Pinnacle Class ships (which hold 2,650 people and also include Nieuw Statendam and Rotterdam ), Music Walk has been rolled out on Signature Class and Vista Class ships also, with R Class vessels featuring one or two of the individual Music Walk venues.

Destinations and itineraries

holland america cruises history

The sheer breadth of destinations Holland America covers is impressive for such a small fleet. Currently, the line has ships scheduled to call on six continents (plus a sail past the seventh, Antarctica) with stops in more than 50 countries.

Itineraries run the gamut from standard Bahamas, Caribbean, Mexico, Canada/New England and Pacific Coastal voyages to more bucket-list regions like Alaska, the Mediterranean and the Panama Canal. More far-flung destinations include places like South Africa, Oman, Egypt, China, Australia and New Zealand, Japan, Turkey, Morocco, Malaysia, Fiji and other areas of the world that are often cumbersome to reach if you're not on a ship.

Many of the more off-the-beaten-path locations are reached via Holland America's two most impressive sailing types: world cruises, which last more than 100 days, and Grand Voyages that might include circumnavigations of places like Africa, Australia and New Zealand or South America and Antarctica. Both of these types of cruises tend to sell out a year or two in advance.

Plus, with the line's recent focus on longer cruises that travel round-trip from U.S. ports, Holland America makes it easy for Americans to set sail without having to fly.

The line's most popular and frequented destinations are the Caribbean and Europe, with other locales in proximity to North America — such as Canada/New England and the Mexican Riviera — proving to be the second-most popular with Holland America travelers.

Holland America has also had a commanding presence in Alaska for decades, offering some of the most robust opportunities to visit the 49th State. In fact, the brand is so established in the region that it owns and operates its own lodges near places like Denali National Park, making for the perfect pre- or post-cruise add-on.

Who sails Holland America cruises?

holland america cruises history

Passengers on Holland America's ships tend to be well-traveled retirees (largely couples but with some singles in the mix) and multigenerational family groups usually consisting of grandparents, parents and children traveling together.

Because the brand's vessels lack flashy top-deck attractions like waterslides and roller coasters, the experience is best enjoyed by people who don't need constant entertainment. The ideal match for one of these sailings is someone who likes destination immersion and relaxation time, as well as superb dining and eclectic music.

Although every Holland America ship has a kids club on board, the youth spaces aren't as expansive and thrilling as the facilities on the larger and more family-friendly cruise lines. Well-behaved kids who enjoy learning and visiting new places will still have a great time.

Cabins and suites

holland america cruises history

Holland America cabins fall into four main categories: insides (no views), outsides (sealed windows), balconies (walk-out verandas) and suites (high-end cabins, usually with extra space and more amenities).

If you're looking for a specialty cabin, those also are available. Holland America offers a selection of accessible rooms on every vessel. They span all cabin types, including suites, with fully accessible, fully accessible single-side approach (with both left- and right-side approaches as options) and ambulatory accessible varieties available. (Specific room types vary by ship.)

Spa cabins come in all basic cabin categories, as well as Neptune Suites. They encompass the same square footage as standard cabins in each of those categories and share the same layout. What sets them apart is that they provide spa-centric extras, such as flavored water and cut fruit, a spa concierge to assist with booking treatments and in-room fitness equipment like exercise DVDs and yoga mats.

Certain ships also offer solo cabins for one person. Designed with lone travelers in mind, they feature full-size beds in lieu of queens, and they're available in the outside category only, ranging from 127 to 172 square feet of space.

The line's only rooms designed specifically with families in mind are outside family cabins, which offer from 222 to 231 square feet of living space and accommodate as many as five people with a queen bed, a two-person sofa bed and a single bunk that pulls down from the ceiling. These cabins are also outfitted with a split bathroom setup — one room with a bathtub/shower, sink and toilet and another with a shower and sink.

Standard features in all Holland America ship cabins include a queen bed that can split into two twins, a couple of nightstands, a vanity/desk area with a chair or stool and a phone. There's also a closet with shelves and room to hang clothes. Rounding out the offerings are a safe, a minifridge, a variety of outlets and USB ports and a private bathroom. An in-room TV provides a handful of channels, ship-sponsored content and complimentary movies.

Select cabins also include sofas, some of which have pull-out beds. Other rooms made to sleep more than two people might have bunks that pull down from the ceiling.

Daily housekeeping service is included in all room types.

Standard amenities on Holland America vessels are a step up from those on most other lines. Some that you might enjoy include Elemis toiletries, bathrobes, shoeshine service, fresh fruit, signature pillow-top mattresses and complimentary 24/7 room service.

Restaurants and dining

holland america cruises history

Holland America consistently cooks up some of the best food at sea . In fact, through its own Culinary Council, the line offers menu items — and even stand-alone restaurants — developed by renowned chefs like Ethan Stowell, Jacques Torres, Rudi Sodamin, Andy Matsuda, David Burke and Masaharu Morimoto. You can even find their items in the main dining rooms, meaning you don't have to pay anything extra to try them.

All of the line's ships offer at least four dining options: two complimentary (the buffet and main dining room) and two for a fee (Italian eatery Canaletto and the Pinnacle Grill steakhouse). As the ships increase in size, so too does the real estate dedicated to restaurants.

The line's Signature and Pinnacle classes both have added-fee Asian-fusion cuisine at joint venue Tamarind and Nami Sushi, and Pinnacle Class vessels also are home to quirky seafood restaurant Rudi's Sel de Mer and the Holland-themed Grand Dutch Cafe. The latter is a fantastic place to seek out complimentary between-meal snacks and extra-charge alcohol and specialty coffee beverages.

Given the brand's deep roots in Alaska and dedication to serving some of the best meals afloat, it uses sustainable Alaskan seafood sourced through a partnership with the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute and certified by Responsible Fisheries Management.

Foodies will enjoy celebrity chef-led dining experiences and cooking demonstrations on select sailings. Plus, Holland America's Vital Choice program provides passengers with at-home fish deliveries and recipes from the line's chefs so they can replicate the meals they've eaten on board when they return to dry land.

Passengers tend to frequent the main dining room on most nights. It provides an upscale sit-down experience with waiter-served meals. If you choose As You Wish dining, you can arrive at the dining room any time between set hours and eat at your own table (or a communal table if you wish). If you choose set seating, you will dine at one of two set dining times with assigned tablemates at the same table and with the same waiters each night.

Depending on each day's schedule, the main dining room might also be open for breakfast and lunch.

Additionally, each Holland America vessel has a buffet that serves a large number of cuisines from several stations for breakfast, lunch, dinner and late-night snacking. And, speaking of snacking, afternoon tea is offered on select afternoons on each voyage.

Other noteworthy options include free pool deck pizza, burgers and hot dogs, as well as 24-hour room service. Although select room service items come with a fee, most are free. (Holland America is the only mainstream cruise line that doesn't charge for standard, around-the-clock room service.)

Entertainment and activities

holland america cruises history

Because Holland America cruises focus on the destinations visited, rather than onboard attractions, the entertainment roster is lighter than what you'll find with other mainstream lines. However, just because there are fewer options doesn't mean the ones that exist aren't excellent.

For starters, the newest vessels feature an entire music-themed promenade, and each ship's main theater, dubbed the World Stage, hosts several fabulous shows each cruise.

Theaters and shows

The most notable of Holland America's entertainment spaces is the Music Walk, a live music-themed promenade that's home to several venues for everything from dueling pianos and blues performances to rock 'n' roll.

B.B. King's Blues Club is a popular venue on Signature Class and Pinnacle Class ships. Named for the famed blues artist, it houses live performances of the same genre. On Vista Class, Signature Class and Pinnacle Class vessels, Billboard Onboard is where you can catch dueling pianos with musicians playing popular tunes that top the Billboard charts.

On Pinnacle Class vessels, a live band jams out to rock tunes in the Rolling Stone Rock Room. On ships in the Vista Class, the similarly themed Rolling Stone Lounge hosts a seven-piece band that covers a range of music styles, including R&B, rock, pop and country.

But the live music doesn't stop there. A three-piece band plays pop arrangements from the '60s through today at the Ocean Bar on all Vista Class and Signature Class ships.

holland america cruises history

The main theater, World Stage, features a changing roster of shows, including the a capella group Cantare; Step One Dance Company performances that meld technologically advanced sets with beautiful choreography; and Island Magic, a modern take on steel drum music.

Performances vary by ship, and a separate rotating list of performers also travels from vessel to vessel as part of Holland America's partnership with Lincoln Center. (Note that Lincoln Center Stage, a venue previously dedicated to instrumental performances in the Music Walk area, is no longer found on the line's vessels .)

Finally, "Origin Story" is a high-tech, live-hosted documentary-style show that chronicles Holland America's history — from the original Rotterdam through the pandemic-related shutdown of 2020 — in a way that will leave you wanting to see it more than once. (Bring tissues.)

Other attractions and activities

Other activities you can expect to see on the daily schedule might include trivia, game shows (think Battle of the Sexes and the Newlywed/Not So Newlywed Game), scavenger hunts, pickleball, casino play, poolside movies, basketball shooting competitions, afternoon tea, board games, dance and mixology classes, spa seminars and wine tastings.

Top-deck attractions

holland america cruises history

In keeping with Holland America's less-flashy style, you won't find much in the way of top-deck pastimes. There are no waterslides, go-kart tracks, surf simulators or rock climbing walls. What you will find, however, are two pools — a main pool covered by a retractable glass roof and another adults-only pool that overlooks the wake — as well as hot tubs for relaxing on each ship.

All ships also have tracks for walking and jogging. Locations and distances vary by vessel.

Children's programs

Holland America offers the appropriately (albeit uninspiringly) named Kids Club on all of its ships. It accommodates children from ages 3-17 under the supervision of professionally trained youth staff.

Children are split into three groups — Kids (ages 3-6), Tweens (7-12) and Teens (13-17) — for age-appropriate activities that might include video game play, arts and crafts, scavenger hunts, theme parties and poker tournaments.

Note that regular Kids Club programming isn't available on sailings of 25 nights or longer, including world cruises and Grand Voyages. Children's activities will be available from time to time as needed, depending on the number and ages of the children on board.

What to know before you go

Required documents.

holland america cruises history

Unless you're sailing a closed-loop cruise (one that leaves from and returns to the same U.S. port) to one of a handful of destinations , you'll need a passport in order to sail with Holland America. If you are taking a closed-loop voyage, you can sail with your original birth certificate and a government-issued photo ID, such as a driver's license, instead of a passport.

Whether you're required to have a passport or not, TPG always recommends traveling with one, just in case there's an emergency that requires you to disembark your sailing in a foreign country.

You will also need your boarding documents, either printed or on your mobile device via the Holland America Line Navigator app , to show at the pier during embarkation.

Additionally, depending on your sailing, you might have to apply for visas in order to enter certain countries. In many cases, the line will handle the application and procurement for you, but pay attention to special instructions in cases where you might be responsible for obtaining your own documentation .

Unless you prepay gratuities or purchase a cruise fare that has them included in the price, you will be charged $16 per person during each day of your cruise ($17.50 if you're booked in a suite). You can adjust the amount up or down or remove it completely (which we don't recommend doing) by visiting the guest services desk. You cannot adjust or remove gratuities after your sailing has ended.

An 18% service charge will be added to bar, drink package and spa purchases.

holland america cruises history

Holland America offers two Wi-Fi package tiers for a fee. The Surf package allows for checking email, accessing webpages, using select apps and utilizing message services, such as WhatsApp and iMessage. The Premium package offers access to select streaming apps (excluding streaming services like Hulu, Prime Video and Netflix) and audio and video call capabilities on apps like FaceTime, WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger.

If you purchase a cruise fare that includes Wi-Fi, you will receive the Surf package. To purchase the Surf package separately, the price starts at $18 per device, per day; Premium starts at $23 per device, per day. Passengers can upgrade from Surf to Premium or add additional devices at any time.

Carry-on drinks policy

Holland America's alcohol policy allows cruisers 21 years of age and older to bring bottles (750 milliliters or less) of wine or Champagne on board for a corkage fee of $20 per bottle, regardless of where the alcohol is consumed. No beer, liquor or boxed wine is allowed.

You can bring wine back on board if purchased in port, but liquor and other types of alcohol will be held for you until the end of the voyage. Most nonalcoholic drinks are not allowed to be brought on board. However, each passenger is allowed to bring cans or cartons of water, not to exceed six 1-liter cans or cartons or 12 500-milliliter cans or cartons. Plastic bottles are not allowed.

Smoking policy

holland america cruises history

Smoking generally is not allowed in indoor areas on Holland America ships, including cabins and cabin balconies. Designated smoking areas are available outdoors and in specific areas of the casinos on select ships. E-cigarettes are allowed to be used in passenger cabins but not on balconies.

Violations of these policies will result in a $250 fine; repeated offenses could cause a passenger to be disembarked from the sailing.

All of Holland America's vessels offer send-out laundry, dry-cleaning and pressing services for a fee. There are no self-service laundry facilities on any of the line's ships.

Electrical outlets

Ships have a mix of North American 110-volt and European 220-volt outlets in their cabins. All of the line's vessels also have USB ports in their rooms, including some near the beds for easy overnight charging.

holland america cruises history

The currency on Holland America ships is the U.S. dollar. The line's ships operate on a cashless system whereby passengers link a credit card or sum of cash to their room keycards, which can then be used to charge onboard purchases.

Drinking age

The drinking age on Holland America ships is 21. Passengers younger than 21 may not purchase or consume alcohol, nor may they bring it on board with them.

Holland America has two types of evening dress codes : smart casual and dressy. The former includes jeans without rips, holes or tears. Shorts, ripped jeans, beachwear and men's tank tops aren't allowed in restaurants at dinner.

On dressy nights, jeans aren't allowed in restaurants that aren't considered casual. For men, jackets and ties are preferred, but collared shirts with slacks are permitted. For women, dresses and skirts or slacks with blouses are appropriate.

Daywear is casual and influenced by the destination and current weather.

Holland America Line loyalty program

holland america cruises history

The Mariner Society, Holland America's loyalty program , allows frequent passengers to earn status over time if they sail with the line enough.

The program is straightforward, with five tiers. You reach each tier after accumulating a certain number of "cruise night credits." Simply, for each night you spend on a Holland America ship, you'll get credit for one night — or one point. Staying in a suite? You'll snag double points.

The five tiers are 1-Star Mariner (after your first cruise), 2-Star Mariner (30-74 cruise nights), 3-Star Mariner (75-199), 4-Star Mariner (200-499) and 5-Star Mariner (500 nights or more).

Cruisers have other ways to earn points, too, such as spending a certain amount of money on board when they sail.

But what's the incentive to join the program? After just one sailing, you're entitled to drink vouchers, a special welcome lunch, discounts on Holland America merchandise and half off third and fourth passengers in a cabin on select cruises. Plus, you'll be eligible for onboard credit when you book certain voyages.

When you reach each subsequent tier, you'll unlock further discounts — or even freebies — on things like specialty restaurant dining, specialty coffees, minibar purchases, spa treatments, laundry and pressing services. You'll also gain perks like priority check-in and tendering, as well as Wi-Fi credits.

How much does a Holland America cruise cost?

holland america cruises history

Holland America sailings aren't the least expensive you'll find, but they won't totally bust your budget, either, particularly if you opt for a more bare-bones cabin in the inside or ocean-view categories.

Although the line doesn't offer a truly all-inclusive cruise experience, it does allow you to purchase a Have It All premium package , rather than simply paying the base cruise fare. The package includes shore excursions, specialty dining, Wi-Fi and a beverage package. Gratuities are extra, but the line sometimes runs promotions that roll them into the cruise fare.

There are also special perks and priority benefits for passengers who pay for Club Orange access. When cruisers book with Holland America, they have the option to purchase a Club Orange add-on that provides priority check-in and disembarkation, priority tendering, dinner in a restaurant exclusive to Club Orange and a complimentary cabin upgrade, among other extras. Prices vary by sailing.

When it comes to fares, at the time of publication, the least expensive weeklong voyage I could find was $371 per person — $53 per person, per night — for a seven-night Alaska sailing through the Inside Passage, round-trip from Vancouver, British Columbia, on Sept. 22, 2024, aboard Nieuw Amsterdam in an inside cabin.

Prices range all the way up to $91,199 per person — $686 per person, per night — for a 133-night pole-to-pole Grand Voyage sailing round-trip from Fort Lauderdale's Port Everglades on Jan. 25, 2025, in a Neptune Suite aboard Zuiderdam.

How to book

holland america cruises history

Cruisers can book Holland America voyages directly by visiting the company's website, by calling a cruise line representative at 855-932-1711 or by using a third-party online booking engine. If you need further assistance, a travel agent can help you narrow down the destination and ship you're looking for, field any special cabin requests you might have and process your reservation without costing you anything extra for the personalized service.

To maximize the return on your investment, carefully consider the type of card you're using to make the purchase. If you're someone who plans to pledge loyalty to Holland America, you might consider the Holland America Line Rewards Visa® Card . It offers welcome bonuses (at the time of publication, 10,000 bonus points when you spend $500 within the first 90 days of card opening), 2 points per dollar spent on Holland America purchases (including onboard purchases) and 1 point per dollar on all other purchases. Points can either be redeemed toward cruise purchases or as statement credits.

However, you might get more value out of one of TPG's favorite credit cards for booking cruises .

The information for the Holland America Line Rewards Visa Card has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

Bottom line

holland america cruises history

Holland America is a cruise line that caters to passengers seeking a premium experience at a reasonable price. It takes pride in its heritage, and its ties to immigration and historical events make it a compelling draw for history buffs and travelers interested in genealogy.

Passengers also have an impressive number of choices when it comes to destinations. Holland America offers itineraries spanning all seven continents, so you only need to decide where you'd like to go.

The line's Pinnacle Class renaissance shows a marked effort by the brand to improve the onboard experience, particularly in the way of entertainment. Sailings offer passengers excellent music and shows and serve phenomenal food in an elegant atmosphere.

Whether you're sailing with your significant other, friends or extended family, you're sure to enjoy a voyage with Holland America.

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Holland America Line

Holland America: Included Drinks, Tours, Specia...

Holland America Alaska cruises from $699*

Holland America Alaska cruises from $699*

Holland America Mediterranean cruises from $999*

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Holland America Line, a premium, upscale cruise line founded in 1873, offers a perfect balance between a formal and relaxed ambiance aboard mid-sized ships. Their long history of shipping and transportation has developed their tremendous pedigree in the cruising industry so you can be sure every aspect of your vacation will be spectacular. Holland America Line’s ‘Signature of Excellence’ means constant improvements and updates to ships, which means an innovative and exciting onboard experience for you - and staterooms that are on average 25% larger than those on similar class vessels. In addition, Holland America Line strives to offer you the most unique destinations, itineraries, and shore excursion offerings so you’ll return with a wealth of memorable experiences.

Holland America Line-Accessibility

Accessibility

Learn about Holland America's handicap accessible cruises and accommodations for guests with special needs or disabilities, including hearing impairment, service animals and oxygen needs.

Holland America Line-Dining

Savor dining aboard Holland America, including the Pinnacle Grill, Canaletto, Tamarind, Lido Restaurant, Master Chef's Room, main dining room, room service and more.

Holland America Line-Entertainment

Entertainment

Enjoy Holland America's onboard entertainment, including BB King's Blues Club, an onboard theater, casino, indoor and outdoor movie screens, bars and lounges.

Holland America Line-Onboard Activities

Onboard Activities

Engage in Holland America's onboard activities, including culinary classes, digital workshops, regional experiences, art galleries, pools, sports courts, duty-free shopping and more.

Holland America Line-Service & Awards

Service & Awards

Learn how Holland America's friendly staff take care of your every need with an extensive list of onboard services. Plus, view Holland America's cruising awards.

Holland America Line-Spa & Fitness

Spa & Fitness

Relax in Holland America's greenhouse spa, salon, fitness center and fitness classes. There are also Hydrotherapy pools on some Holland America ships.

Holland America Line-Special Events

Special Events

Make the most of your Holland America Line cruise with exclusive special events and signature experiences in select cities.

Holland America Line-Staterooms

Explore Holland America's deluxe cruise staterooms, including Pinnacle, Neptune, Signature and Vista Suites, along with balcony, ocean-view and inside staterooms.

Holland America Line-Youth Programs

Youth Programs

Learn about cruising with children aboard Holland America. Youth programs provide supervision and activities for children ages 3-17, along with babysitting programs.

Top 10 Holland America Line Itineraries

  • Noordam 11-day Double Denali: Tour D5l Departing From Whittier, Alaska (Jun 2024 - Sep 2024)
  • Noordam 11-day Double Denali: Tour R6l Departing From Whittier, Alaska (Jun 2024 - Sep 2024)
  • Oosterdam 11-day Mediterranean Tapestry Departing From Barcelona, Spain (Jun 2024)
  • Noordam 11-day Triple Denali: Tour D2l Departing From Whittier, Alaska (Jun 2024 - Sep 2024)
  • Oosterdam 23-day Mediterranean Tapestry & Empires Departing From Barcelona, Spain (Jun 2024)
  • Noordam D5j: 11-day Collette Departing From Whittier, Alaska (Jun 2024 - Sep 2025)
  • Noordam 10-day Denali: Tour D0l Departing From Whittier, Alaska (Jun 2024 - Sep 2024)
  • Noordam 10-day Denali: Tour D7l Departing From Whittier, Alaska (Jun 2024 - Sep 2024)
  • Noordam 10-day Denali: Tour R8l Departing From Whittier, Alaska (Jun 2024 - Sep 2024)
  • Noordam 10-day Double Denali: Tour D6l Departing From Whittier, Alaska (Jun 2024 - Sep 2024)

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Holland America Line Cruise Destinations

Holland America Line prides itself on offering a superb variety of destinations. This cruise line visits 7 continents and over 320 ports worldwide while embarking from all types of ports, from convenient close-to-home ports to far-away exotic departure ports. You can plan a special romantic cruise to the Greek Isles or an enriching vacation in Asia. In addition, Holland America's connections with Alaskan hotels and their ownership of Half Moon Cay (their private Caribbean island) have differentiated them in Alaska and the Caribbean. 

Holland America Line-Alaska

Enjoy the natural beauty and inherent adventure of America’s 49 th State with an Alaska cruise.

Holland America Line-Alaska Cruisetours

Alaska Cruisetours

Thrills, massive hills, and a few chills in America’s 49 th state—that’s the way we do Alaska Cruisetours.

Holland America Line-Asia

Culinary eccentricity meets historical adventure when you cruise to Asia and the Pacific.

Holland America Line-Australia/New Zealand

Get a taste of the land under, and wander the outback with some wallabies with a cruise to Australia/New Zealand and the South Pacific.

Holland America Line-Canada / New England

From the changing of the seasons to clam chowder that defies reason, cruising to Canada and New England is an unforgettable vacation experience.

Holland America Line-Caribbean

It’s an investment in happiness and cultural enrichment when you choose to get tropical and take a Caribbean cruise.

Holland America Line-Eastern Caribbean

Eastern Caribbean

Spend some time in the sunshine and fill your nights with tropical delights in the Eastern Caribbean.

Holland America Line-Europe

Royalty, culinary excellence, interesting cities and ports—all this and more when you cruise to Europe. 

Holland America Line-Hawaii

Delve into the unique Hawaiian culture and spectacular tropical delights of the islands with a cruise to Hawaii.

Holland America Line-Mediterranean

Mediterranean

Delve into culinary treats in Italy and Turkey or enrich yourself with the history of France and Spain with a Mediterranean cruise.

Holland America Line-Mexican Riviera

Mexican Riviera

Sail along the coast of the Mexican Riviera in style while you delve into ancient civilizations—take a cruise to Mexico.

Holland America Line-Northern Europe

Northern Europe

Inspire yourself with a Northern Europe cruise highlighted by Viking legends, grand, looming fjords, and a history of royalty.

Holland America Line-Panama Canal

Panama Canal

Man-made and natural spectacles unite when you cruise to the unique Panama Canal.

Holland America Line-South America

South America

Visit lands of contrasting weather, where you can challenge yourself and your palate—that’s the mantra of a cruise to South America and Antarctica.

Holland America Line-South Pacific / Tahiti

South Pacific / Tahiti

The South Pacific and Fiji are your tropical paradise. Holland America wants you to experience true bliss when you sail with them to these secluded islands. 

Holland America Line-Southern Caribbean

Southern Caribbean

From snorkeling to smoothies, cultural treasures to creatures of the jungle—cruising to the Southern Caribbean is an incredible vacation option.

Holland America Line-Transatlantic

Transatlantic

Experience premium cruising at its best on a relaxing cruise across the Atlantic Ocean aboard one of Holland America’s elegant cruise ships.

Holland America Line-Transpacific

Transpacific

Cruise across the Pacific Ocean in style aboard one of Holland America’s premium ships. You could visit a wide variety of exotic ports while traveling between stunning worlds.

Holland America Line-U. S. Pacific Coast

U. S. Pacific Coast

Discover the history of the West and the cultures of some of the finest America cities with a Pacific Northwest or Pacific Coast cruise.

Holland America Line-Western Caribbean

Western Caribbean

Diverse cultures, sunny days by the sparkling water, and thrilling excursions await you on a Western Caribbean cruise.

Holland America Line-World

From the Alaska to Australia, Bahamas to Burma, and everywhere in between—choose a Grand Voyage or World cruise and see it all.

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Holland America Line Departure Ports

Sail to the world’s hot spots with Holland America. This revered cruise line has sailings from cities around the world like Ft. Lauderdale, Valparaiso, Barcelona, Sydney and Montreal.  All of their departure ports are convenient to get to with major airports and public transportation. Get ready for an amazing cruise vacation with Holland America, your first step is to call us at The Cruise Web to speak with a consultant and find your perfect itinerary. 

Holland America Line-Amsterdam, The Netherlands

With Amsterdam’s beautiful canals and an open attitude you’ll find no shortage of interesting attractions in the capital of The Netherlands.

Holland America Line-Anchorage, Alaska

Anchorage, Alaska

Discover something new while exploring Anchorage, Alaska’s largest city. The city is surrounded by natural beauty ripe for sight-seeing.

Holland America Line-Auckland, New Zealand

Auckland, New Zealand

The mild temperatures in Auckland enhance an outdoorsy cruise destination. Tour the many beaches, hike beautiful mountain ranges or just wander Auckland’s city streets.

Holland America Line-Barcelona, Spain

Discover imaginative architecture, impressive Spanish dishes and beautiful excursions into nature when you cruise to Barcelona, the capital of Catalonia.

Holland America Line-Boston, Massachusetts

Boston is home to great sports, great food and loads of history with the Freedom Trail and Harvard.

Holland America Line-Buenos Aires, Argentina

Buenos Aires, Argentina

Buenos Aires is a charming European style city with the perfect combination of new world characteristics mixed with old world history and culture.

Holland America Line-Cape Town, South Africa

Cape Town, South Africa

See the beautiful sights of Cape Town, South Africa’s most visited city, which offers cruisers natural beauty, plentiful wine, historical significance and a sense of peace.

Holland America Line-Civitavecchia (Rome), Italy

A cruise to Civitavecchia is a chance for you to hop a quick train to Rome and explore the enormous history through ruins, galleries and The Vatican museums.

Holland America Line-Copenhagen, Denmark

Copenhagen, Denmark

Copenhagen is a delightful city with some of the world’s most interesting places, like the longest pedestrian street and one of the oldest amusement parks in the world.

Holland America Line-Dover (London), England

Dover (London), England

Dover, with its striking white cliffs, is one of the most popular gateways to England. Take in the area’s natural beauty or head to nearby London to see more of England’s most popular attractions.

Holland America Line-Fort Lauderdale (Port Everglades), Florida

With incredible weather, delicious fare and some stupendous attractions, you will find that Fort Lauderdale’s Port Everglades is one of the most attractive ports in the entire US.

Holland America Line-Fremantle, Australia

Fremantle, Australia

Beautiful beaches mixed with alternative art and music fill the Western Australia port city of Fremantle.

Holland America Line-Hong Kong, Hong Kong Sar, China

Hong Kong, Hong Kong Sar, China

One of the world’s most exciting modern cities, Hong Kong offers a true East meets West experience where you can shop for traditional Chinese cure-alls and attend high tea all in the same afternoon.

Holland America Line-Ijmuiden, Netherlands

Ijmuiden, Netherlands

Ijmuiden offers cruisers a great spot from which to travel all over the northern part of The Netherlands, making it a popular port for cruisers seeking a more in-depth Northern European experience.

Holland America Line-Lisbon, Portugal

Lisbon, Portugal

Lisbon has deep cultural roots that are exposed through ruins and museum artifacts. Cruise to Lisbon and discover the culture and history of Portugal in its capital city.

Holland America Line-Miami, Florida

In Miami, you’ll enjoy a small taste of the tropical weather many of you will experience during your cruise, and you’ll see why Miami is one of the most popular places to live in America.

Holland America Line-Montreal, Quebec

Montreal, Quebec

Montreal combines Old World style and New World cosmopolitan inspirations, along with a French culture, for a beautiful all-encompassing city and cruise destination.

Holland America Line-New York, New York

Take in the incredible art scene of New York City, expand your cultural horizons in the city’s diverse neighborhoods and marvel at the architectural wonders.

Holland America Line-Piraeus (Athens), Greece

Learn about the Greek gods and the early philosophy of Socrates when you visit the incredible ruins left in Athens, Greece. At night, go out and take in the culture with the modern Athenians.

Holland America Line-Quebec City, Quebec

Quebec City, Quebec

It’s easy to be wowed by Quebec City as Old World Europe is mixed with North American cultures alongside breathtaking landscapes and the flowing Saint Lawrence River.

Holland America Line-Reykjavik, Iceland

Reykjavik was just a small village until seeing a major expansion after World War II, but this popular cruise destination still offers a small town feel different than any other European capital.

Holland America Line-Rotterdam, The Netherlands

Rotterdam, The Netherlands

With modern buildings and a bustling population, Rotterdam offers an interesting contrast to the more laid back feel of city’s like Amsterdam.

Holland America Line-San Antonio, Santiago, Chile

San Antonio, Santiago, Chile

Experience the history of San Antonio or head to Santiago to experience everything Chile’s capital has to offer. The choice is yours!

Holland America Line-San Diego, California

San Diego, California

Situated on the Pacific Ocean, San Diego is known for its near perfect weather, beautiful beaches and abundance of activities.

Holland America Line-Seattle, Washington

Known as The Emerald City, Seattle is a beautiful, luscious city with incredible views of the Cascade Mountains and Elliott Bay. The city is full of activities for both water lovers and outdoor enthusiasts.

Holland America Line-Singapore, Singapore

Singapore, Singapore

Southeast Asia’s most modern city, Singapore, also contains a lot of history and treasures from the past, along with a perfect tropical climate – all making Singapore a wonderful destination year round.

Holland America Line-Skagway, Alaska

Skagway, Alaska

Have a golden experience in Skagway, an Alaskan city known as one of the best starting points for the Yukon Gold Rush.

Holland America Line-Sydney, Australia

The near perfect days, beautiful scenery, pristine beaches and sparkling water offer the perfect backdrop for any dream adventure in Sydney, Australia.

Holland America Line-Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo is a dazzling city where you might be overwhelmed at first by its modernity but will find lots of interesting subcultures in its various neighborhoods.

Holland America Line-Trieste, Italy

Trieste, Italy

Sit back and enjoy the sea breezes in Trieste, an Italian city that despite being close to Venice is more akin to Vienna, the capital of the Hapsburg Empire. 

Holland America Line-Vancouver, British Columbia

Whether it’s your cruise destination or a launching point, Vancouver is a beautiful destination in itself with a sophisticated downtown and lots of natural elements to explore.

Holland America Line-Whittier, Alaska

Whittier, Alaska

Experience the best of the Last Frontier in quaint Whittier, Alaska. Enjoy the clear water filled with salmon, red snapper and trout along with the freely roaming wildlife, all combining to make Whittier a treat to visit.

Holland America Line-Yokohama, Japan

Yokohama, Japan

See Japanese history in person as you discover Yokohama, Japan’s biggest port city, where the country was first opened to outside trade after more than 200 years of seclusion.

Holland America Line Ships

Holland America Line has used their history and cruising pedigree to create a semi-formal, yet innovative fleet of cruise ships. Each class in the fleet boasts unique and intriguing features for a stupendous onboard experience. Aside from the elegant traditional dining, each ship offers delicious specialty dining such as the Pinnacle Grille or the Canaletto Italian Restaurant. Each ship has comfortable and modern accommodations, spa and fitness availability, and bright and exciting onboard activities and entertainment. 

Holland America Line-Eurodam

  • Passenger Capacity: 2,104 (double occupancy)
  • Year Built: 2008
  • Last Refurbished: 2015

Holland America Line-Koningsdam

  • Passenger Capacity: 2,650 (double occupancy)
  • Year Built: 2016
  • Last Refurbished: N/A

Holland America Line-Nieuw Amsterdam

Nieuw Amsterdam

  • Passenger Capacity: 2,106 (double occupancy)
  • Year Built: 2010
  • Last Refurbished: 2017

Holland America Line-Nieuw Statendam

Nieuw Statendam

  • Passenger Capacity: 2,666 (double occupancy)
  • Year Built: 2018

Holland America Line-Noordam

  • Passenger Capacity: 1,972 (double occupancy)
  • Year Built: 2006
  • Last Refurbished: 2019

Holland America Line-Oosterdam

  • Passenger Capacity: 1,964 (double occupancy)
  • Year Built: 2003
  • Last Refurbished: 2018

Holland America Line-Rotterdam

  • Passenger Capacity:  2,668 (double occupancy)
  • Year Built:  2021
  • Last Refurbished:  N/A

Holland America Line-Volendam

  • Passenger Capacity: 1,432 (double occupancy)
  • Year Built: 1996

Holland America Line-Westerdam

  • Year Built: 2004
  • Last Refurbished: 2023

Holland America Line-Zaandam

  • Passenger Capacity: 1,432 (double occupancy)
  • Year Built: 2000

Holland America Line-Zuiderdam

  • Year Built: 2002

Photo Gallery for Holland America Line Cruises

Are you a visual learner? Check out this photo gallery of the Holland America experience. Here you can see the amazing dining venues, spacious staterooms and beautiful destinations the ship sails to. 

Caribbean Horse Back Riding Holland America Line

Horse Back Riding Excursion in the Caribbean

Istanbul, Turkey Holland America Line Cruise

Ship cruising into Istanbul, Turkey

Ryndam in Alaska Holland America Line

ms Ryndam in Alaska

Guest on Balcony in Alaska Holland America Line

Guest enjoying their balcony stateroom in Alaska

Maasdam penthouse veranda cabin Holland America

ms Maasdam Penthouse Veranda stateroom

Signature Suite Stateroom Holland America Line

Signature Suite Stateroom

Spa Suite Veranda Stateroom Holland America Line

ms Veendam Spa Suite Veranda Stateroom

Maasdam Greenhouse Spa Holland America Line

ms Maasdam Greenhouse Spa

Nieuw Amsterdam Cabana Club Holland America Line

ms Nieuw Amsterdam Cabana Club

Statendam Lido Pool Holland America Line Cruise

ms Statendam Lido Pool Deck

Pool Deck and Onboard Activities Holland America

Pool Deck and Onboard Activities

Loft Oasis youth programs Holland America Line

Loft Oasis youth programs

Holland America Line Cruise Fitness Center

Fitness Center

Holland America Line Casino and Entertainment

Casino and Entertainment

Holland America Line Entertainment at Sea

Entertainment at Sea

Canaletto Dining Room Holland America Line Cruise

Canaletto Dining Room

Eurodam Tamarind dining room Holland America Line

ms Eurodam Tamarind dining room

Machu Picchu, Peru Holland America Line Cruise

Machu Picchu, Peru

Bahai Temple and Gardens in Haifa Holland America

Bahai Temple and Gardens in Haifa

Cruising past Sydney Opera House Holland America

Cruising past Sydney Opera House

Holland America Line ship cruising Panama Canal

Ship cruising the Panama Canal

Caribbean Horse Back Riding Holland America Line

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A Look Back - Holland America's Rotterdam 1957 - Brief History and Video Flashback

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Looking back at the old memories

The history of the ss Rotterdam

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The long and rich history of ‘La Grande Dame’

The legendary former flagship of the Holland America Line, 228 metres long, 28 metres wide, 51 metres high, rich in history and renowned for its cultural-historical value, the ss Rotterdam. On the website of Vrienden van Stoomschip Rotterdam you can read all about its history. Below an overview.

1956 – 1959

Exciting times, exciting furniture

For many people, crossing the Atlantic Ocean to America means a journey to the new world. However, sailing over the Atlantic Ocean is not always a pleasure. The sea is rough and the climate is unpredictable. The HAL therefore makes specific demands on the design of its newest ship. A gracefully shaped hull and a sharp, high bow should further improve seaworthiness and speed compared to her predecessors. The machine installation will be relocated and the ship will have two modern chimneys next to each other. Where other ships traditionally have a chimney, there will now be a large deckhouse. This creates the striking, streamlined profile of the ss Rotterdam. The design may seem controversial at the time, but on later ships this layout is often copied. The HAL attaches at least as much value to the interior. The shipping company attracts well-known architects and artists for this. The renowned interior designer Van Tienhoven, for example, will be responsible for important parts of the ship’s interior, which must be both luxurious and functional. He sketches exciting furniture for that time and uses modern materials such as plastic, ceramics and aluminium. Together with well-known Dutch artists he creates a coherent whole in which arts and crafts play a major role.

13 September 1958

Royal christen

With a silver axe Queen Juliana cuts through the thread from which a champagne bottle dangles and speaks the historical words: ‘I hereby name you the Rotterdam and I wish you a safe voyage’. The tens of thousands of spectators standing on both sides of the Nieuwe Maas are admiring, clapping and cheering at the half-finished ship.

3 September 1959

A year later, on 3 September 1959, the construction was completed and the graceful ship could begin her first voyage. Some people have to get used to the striking appearance of the ship. They find the two slender chimneys, instead of the traditional smoking chimney in the middle, a bit too modern at first. With her 38,645 gross registered tonnage, the ss Rotterdam is the flagship of the Holland America Line and of the Dutch merchant shipping, one of the top ten large passenger ships.

Destination: New York. That day the quay is full of heavy suitcases and huge trucks full of fourage. Not without reason: in eight days no less than 31,000 eggs, 4,000 heads of lettuce, 2,000 kilos of butter and 10,000 kilos of beef go through it. Expectantly, the twelve hundred passengers and special guests board the truck. Ashore, the stragglers point to the ever-decreasing stature on one of the decks. Crown Princess Beatrix sails along! Once arrived in New York, water spray tugboats sail towards the ship, a festive welcome!

1959 – 1971

Cruising in opulence

In this relatively quiet period the ss Rotterdam not only makes transatlantic crossings, but also cruises. The crew is already used to the fact that in all ports a large crowd of admirers is waiting for the ship. Not so strange, with her 228 meters length the ss Rotterdam makes an enormous impression.

Always first class

Flying is a relatively cheap and much faster way to cross the ocean. This means the end of liner shipping to New York. Also the ss Rotterdam makes its last crossing. With melancholy the passengers go ashore in New York. One more time they look back, will they ever see the ship that appeals so much to the imagination? The answer is yes! Because the ss Rotterdam continues to sail as a cruise ship. This is thanks to the then HAL director De Monchy. With his foresight, he had a monumental staircase installed with sliding panels during construction. During the transatlantic crossings the panels divided the decks into two classes. As a result, the first-class and the tourist class passengers travelled separately from each other. The ingenious thing about the panels is that they can also be opened so that only one class remains. As a result, the ss Rotterdam is rapidly turning into a cruise ship without separation of classes. After a number of smaller structural alterations, the ss Rotterdam is ready for its next career: five-star cruises to distant, exotic places. As popular as ever.

Early 90′

The ss Rotterdam as maritime icon

The international requirements for cruise ships have now been tightened. The ss Rotterdam also no longer meets all safety requirements. The HAL, in the hands of the American Carnival Cruise Line since 1988, considers a renovation to be too expensive. The shipping company prefers to continue with much more modern cruise ships, but without the nostalgic atmosphere and glamour of a ship like the ss Rotterdam. The ship has become an icon in the shipping world.

‘Rotterdam’ will become ‘Rembrandt’

The ship was acquired in 1997 by the US-based cruise company Premier Cruises, a company that envisioned a market for operating older second-hand ships with steam turbines.

The company rechristened the vessel Rembrandt with a view to maintaining the Dutch identity and loyal clients. Premier Cruises, however, unexpectedly encountered financial problems in 2000 and was declared bankrupt at the request of a US investment bank. The Rembrandt was moored in Freeport, the Bahamas.

Stormy weather

The economy is declining. Premier Cruises is going bankrupt. The Rembrandt, however popular she is, is no longer allowed to sail and is chained indefinitely in the port of Freeport in the Bahamas. And then it is quiet for a while.

The ship changed ownership again in 2005: housing corporation Woonbron, in cooperation with Albeda College acquired the ship. In that year the Rotterdam was towed to nearby Cadiz on the south coast of Spain, where work was carried out on the hull, the structure and parts of the decks. The process of refurbishing and renovating several hundred cabins was then carried out in 2006 in Gdansk, Poland and in the North German port city Wilhelmshaven.

2005 – 2008

Big and compelling

For the various phases of renovation, the ship undertakes one more voyage. After years of lying still, the ss Rotterdam can no longer sail itself. Therefore the ship is transported by tugboats from Gibraltar to Cadiz and then to Gdansk and Wilhelmshaven. On the way the ss Rotterdam gets back its old shape bit by bit. A grey hull, which is provided with the characteristic golden-yellow trim and the original name appears again on the bow and stern. The fantastic interior, the works of art, the salons and the furniture everything is brought back to its old state and glory as much as possible. A number of tapestries are even completely rewoven. Also the huge mural in the Grand Ballroom will be restored. A gigantic job. At the same time, a team of designers is preparing the ship for modern times with atmospheric restaurants, larger and modernly equipped hotel rooms, a car park and entrance buildings at the 3rd Katendrechtsehoofd. Everything is being prepared for a return with allure.

4 August 2008

Yesterday becomes today, today becomes tomorrow.

The day has finally arrived. After nearly fifty years, ss Rotterdam is making her way into the port in grand and majestic fashion. La Grande Dame is back! The quays extending from Hoek van Holland are lined with crowds of people eager to watch this final voyage live. All her wanderings have finally come to an end as ss Rotterdam arrives at its final destination at one of the most beautiful places she could ever imagine – on Katendrecht in Rotterdam! Yesterday becomes today and today becomes tomorrow. ss Rotterdam opens to the public on 15 February 2010 and instantly becomes one of the city’s most popular places!

15 February 2010

A new purpose.

The ship was towed into and moored on the quay of the Derde Katendrechtsehoofd in Rotterdam. After further renovations and modifications, the ship was opened to the public on 15 February 2010.

12 June 2013

Westcord hotels proud owner.

On 12 June 2013 the ss Rotterdam was officially transferred to WestCord Hotels, a Dutch family business with 15 beautiful hotels in Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Delft, Leeuwarden, Garderen, Raalte and on the Wadden Islands Vlieland, Terschelling and Ameland. With great pride WestCord Hotels has added the ss Rotterdam as the new 14th pearl to the WestCord hotel group.

holland america cruises history

ss Rotterdam and Hotel New York reunited!

Since the takeover of the ss Rotterdam by WestCord Hotels, the two Rotterdam icons have been together again after years: the ss Rotterdam former flagship of the Holland Amerika Lijn (HAL)  and Hotel New York former head office of the HAL. Both hotels are within walking distance of each other and were once part of the rich and 140 year long history of the Holland America Line!

December 2013

The new Captains Lounge

The former New York shop has been transformed into the Captains Lounge! The permanent interior design partner of WestCord Hotels, ESTIDA, designed and realised the spectacular bar for the ship. Guests are now welcome to enjoy a snack or drink in the Captains Lounge.

24 November 2014

Moor directly to the ship!

The new pontoon is open! From November 2014, boats can moor at the pontoon and guests can enter the ship immediately via the B-deck. The Watertaxi Rotterdam will also moor at the new pontoon. Visitors of the ss Rotterdam no longer have to go to the pontoon at the back of the ship.

1 January 2015

One ship, one organization

As of 1 January 2015, WestCord Hotels has taken over the Meetings & Events department. In addition to the hotel and restaurants, this branch of the ss Rotterdam also belongs to the hotel chain. Because all facets of the ship now fall under one organisation, all parts of your programme can be optimally coordinated with each other.

December 2016

Green Key Gold

In December 2016 the ss Rotterdam obtained the Golden Green Key. WestCord Hotels is proactively committed to doing more for the environment than legislation and regulations require. Currently, 12 WestCord Hotels have obtained the Green Key certificate, including the ss Rotterdam.

1 March 2017

Lido become Lido Grill! 

From the 1st of March the Lido became a grill restaurant where the dishes are prepared on the new KOPA charcoal oven. Chef Raymon Rademaker has put together a new menu with an extensive choice of delicious grill dishes, including a new selection of specialty beers for surprising taste combinations.

10 April 2017

Start of the water bus

In addition to the water taxi, the ss Rotterdam has also had a good connection to the water bus since 10 April 2017. This waterbus arrives at the pontoon next to the ship and makes it possible to sail further distances, to Kinderdijk for example!

14 November 2019

Opening of the Ocean Wine Bar

Wines, wines, it can’t be missing in these times and the ss Rotterdam is also participating. On the 14th of November the Ocean Wine Bar will be opened. You can enjoy a good glass of wine, but there are also two High Wine packages to book. Are you going for the High Wine or the High Wine Exclusive? Cheers!

Ocean Wine Bar

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holland america cruises history

Do you need a past cruise ship itinerary but can’t find any track on the net? Our extensive database includes cruising logs of all the major cruise lines dating back from 2013 to this day. If you like to keep track of your past cruises and go down the memory lane or need an itinerary in timetable format for the entire year, we got you covered. We can provide data of past cruise voyages in an excel file with complete information organized in the following format: cruise ship, date, ports, and arrival-departure times.

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Singapore skyline and Marina Bay at night

Asia Cruises

During your cruise to Asia, you’ll walk in the footsteps of emperors as you explore the palaces and temples they commissioned, and marvel at engineering feats from grand canals to immense fortifications. When you visit some of the world's most exciting cities, you’ll be quickly and joyfully immersed in the buzz of cosmopolitan energy. Sample amazing new flavors in the street markets of Bangkok, trace the vestiges of colonial Britain among the modern shopping lanes of Hong Kong and stroll the serene, otherworldly gardens of Kyoto. Whichever ports you visit on your cruise to Asia, you’ll never cease to be enchanted by the fascinating histories, cultures and landscapes you encounter across this vast continent.   

Featured Asia Cruise Ports

Sunset scenery in Sriracha, Chonburi, Thailand

Laem Chabang (Bangkok), Thailand

holland america cruises history

Halong Bay, Vietnam

Supertree Grove, Gardens by the Bay in Singapore

Benoa (Denpasar), Bali, Indonesia

Featured shore excusions, recommended for you.

A study in contrasts, Asia balances ancient glory and leading-edge innovation in a region that encompasses a rich mélange of cultures. Take a closer look at cosmopolitan  Hong Kong , including the city’s must-see museums, parks and cultural centers. Explore Edo-era architectural treasures in  Tokyo . Discover China’s iconic Terra Cotta Warriors, a day trip from  Shanghai . Learn what breathtaking sights await on a cruise of  Vietnam ’s  Halong Harbor. And get a preview of  I ndonesia ’s Borobudur, the world’s largest Buddhist temple and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

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INSIDER

Thinking of booking a cruise? Here are the lines you should — and shouldn't — sail with.

Posted: June 10, 2024 | Last updated: June 10, 2024

<ul class="summary-list"><li>Before you <a href="https://www.businessinsider.com/best-cruise-lines-from-frequent-cruiser-disney-royal-caribbean-2024-5">book a cruise</a>, it's important to understand that not all cruise lines are equal.</li><li>Each cruise line has amenities, entertainment, and experiences tailored to specific cruisers.</li><li>Carnival is good for families, Virgin Voyages for solo adults, and Cunard for mature travelers. </li></ul><p>I am a very, very avid cruiser. Last year alone, I <a href="https://www.businessinsider.com/mistakes-to-avoid-on-cruises-next-year-frequent-traveler-2023-12">spent 73 days on cruise ships</a>.</p><p>I've sailed with most major lines, from kid-focused Disney Cruise Line to the sometimes-naughty Virgin Voyages. When people ask me which <a href="https://www.businessinsider.com/solo-cruise-ship-with-studio-cabins-norwegian-getaway-review-2023-6">cruise ships I recommend</a>, my answer isn't so straightforward.</p><p>Each cruise line is unique, offering amenities, entertainment, and experiences tailored to specific cruisers. What you book will depend on your needs, wants, budget, and what you'd rather avoid.</p><p>So, I've done some research about popular cruise lines and combined my personal experiences to help you decide which cruise line to book with.</p><p>After all, this is kind of <a href="https://www.businessinsider.com/why-americans-love-cruises-icon-of-the-seas-gen-z-2024-1">the year of the cruise</a>, with travelers predicted to <a href="https://www.reuters.com/business/travelers-ready-set-sail-cruises-record-levels-next-year-2023-12-04/">set sail at some of the highest rates</a> in years throughout 2024.</p><p>Here's what you need to know about some of the major cruise lines before you book your next trip.</p><p><strong><em>Editor's Note: </em></strong><em>Price ranges were calculated at the time of publication based on available listings on each cruise site. Cruise pricing is per person, based on double occupancy and the cheapest stateroom/fare available. Prices were calculated before taxes, port charges, and other fees. Itineraries with added tours built-in were not included when calculating this information.</em></p><div class="read-original">Read the original article on <a href="https://www.businessinsider.com/which-cruise-lines-should-i-choose-skip-expert-2024">Business Insider</a></div>

  • Before you book a cruise , it's important to understand that not all cruise lines are equal.
  • Each cruise line has amenities, entertainment, and experiences tailored to specific cruisers.
  • Carnival is good for families, Virgin Voyages for solo adults, and Cunard for mature travelers. 

I am a very, very avid cruiser. Last year alone, I spent 73 days on cruise ships .

I've sailed with most major lines, from kid-focused Disney Cruise Line to the sometimes-naughty Virgin Voyages. When people ask me which cruise ships I recommend , my answer isn't so straightforward.

Each cruise line is unique, offering amenities, entertainment, and experiences tailored to specific cruisers. What you book will depend on your needs, wants, budget, and what you'd rather avoid.

So, I've done some research about popular cruise lines and combined my personal experiences to help you decide which cruise line to book with.

After all, this is kind of the year of the cruise , with travelers predicted to set sail at some of the highest rates in years throughout 2024.

Here's what you need to know about some of the major cruise lines before you book your next trip.

Editor's Note: Price ranges were calculated at the time of publication based on available listings on each cruise site. Cruise pricing is per person, based on double occupancy and the cheapest stateroom/fare available. Prices were calculated before taxes, port charges, and other fees. Itineraries with added tours built-in were not included when calculating this information.

The Carnival Horizon left without the family of four after Melinda Van Veldhuizen was told she couldn't set sail. <a>AaronP/Bauer-Griffin/Getty Images</a>

Carnival Cruise Line

Cost: $ | Prices range from $156/pp for a two-day getaway from Sydney to $3,273/pp for a 10-day Alaska cruise

Ideal for: Budget travelers, intergenerational groups, families, and partiers

Skip if: You're looking for a high-class, elegant experience or a quiet, laid-back vibe

Highlight: All Carnival cruises come with itineraries loaded with fun activities. Some ships have especially exciting features like the first roller coaster at sea, SkyRide zip-line-style aerial bikes, and themed parties.

Possible cons: This is not a cruise line for those who like to wear a tux or ball gown or have a quiet cruise experience.

Launched in 1972, Carnival Cruise Line is one of nine cruise lines owned by parent company Carnival Corporation & plc. It's the company's largest cruise line, with 27 ships. Its cruises typically range from two days to 29 days.

Carnival Cruise Line offers year-round cruises in Australia, The Bahamas, the Caribbean, and Mexico and seasonal cruises in Alaska , Bermuda, Canada, Europe, Hawaii, and New England.

<p><strong>Cost:</strong> $$ | Prices range from $233/pp for a three-night Key West & Bahamas cruise to $6,912/pp for a 7-night Galapagos cruise</p><p><strong>Ideal for: </strong>Couples, families, and <a href="https://www.businessinsider.com/things-to-know-before-solo-cruise-from-frequent-cruiser-2023-8">solo travelers</a></p><p><strong>Skip if:</strong> You're looking for a slower-paced classic cruise</p><p><strong>Highlight: </strong>All Celebrity Cruises come with amazing outdoor spaces like The Lawn Club with real grass on the top deck of Solstice Series ships and the Rooftop Terrace on Millennium Series ships. You also won't want to miss the <a href="https://www.celebritycruises.com/cruise-ships/celebrity-edge/onboard-experience/magic-carpet">Magic Carpet</a>, which allows guests to hang out while suspended above the ocean on some ships.</p><p><strong>Possible cons: </strong>This is not a cruise line for those who want to attend lectures about their ports of call.</p><p>Celebrity Cruises began sailing in 1997. There are 16 ships, which sail on itineraries ranging from three to 19 nights to nearly 300 ports of call in 70 countries.</p>

Celebrity Cruises

Cost: $$ | Prices range from $233/pp for a three-night Key West & Bahamas cruise to $6,912/pp for a 7-night Galapagos cruise

Ideal for: Couples, families, and solo travelers

Skip if: You're looking for a slower-paced classic cruise

Highlight: All Celebrity Cruises come with amazing outdoor spaces like The Lawn Club with real grass on the top deck of Solstice Series ships and the Rooftop Terrace on Millennium Series ships. You also won't want to miss the Magic Carpet , which allows guests to hang out while suspended above the ocean on some ships.

Possible cons: This is not a cruise line for those who want to attend lectures about their ports of call.

Celebrity Cruises began sailing in 1997. There are 16 ships, which sail on itineraries ranging from three to 19 nights to nearly 300 ports of call in 70 countries.

<p><strong>Cost:</strong> $$$ | Prices range from $249/pp for a two-night cruise from Southampton, England to Hamburg, Germany, to $19,158/pp for a 111-night World Voyage</p><p><strong>Ideal for: </strong>Sophisticated travelers and mature cruisers</p><p><strong>Skip if:</strong> You're looking for a high-energy cruise, hoping to <a href="https://www.businessinsider.com/multigenerational-family-cruise-vacation-kids-grandmother-2024-4">travel with children</a>, or craving adventurous activities</p><p><strong>Highlight: </strong>All Cunard cruises come with white-glove service. You won't want to miss Cunard's famous 3:30 p.m. afternoon tea, gala evenings, and fine dining arranged by stateroom grade.</p><p><strong>Possible cons: </strong>This is a very formal cruise with strict dress codes. You won't find water slides or pool parties here.</p><p>Founded in 1840, Cunard offers a classic cruise experience with cruises ranging from two to 116 nights.</p><p>Its four ships sail to Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, North America, and South America.</p>

Cost: $$$ | Prices range from $249/pp for a two-night cruise from Southampton, England to Hamburg, Germany, to $19,158/pp for a 111-night World Voyage

Ideal for: Sophisticated travelers and mature cruisers

Skip if: You're looking for a high-energy cruise, hoping to travel with children , or craving adventurous activities

Highlight: All Cunard cruises come with white-glove service. You won't want to miss Cunard's famous 3:30 p.m. afternoon tea, gala evenings, and fine dining arranged by stateroom grade.

Possible cons: This is a very formal cruise with strict dress codes. You won't find water slides or pool parties here.

Founded in 1840, Cunard offers a classic cruise experience with cruises ranging from two to 116 nights.

Its four ships sail to Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, North America, and South America.

<p><strong>Cost:</strong> $$$ | Prices range from $422.40/pp for a two-night cruise from Sydney to Brisbane, Australia, to $5,592/pp for a 12-night Mediterranean with Greek Isles cruise</p><p><strong>Ideal for: </strong><a href="https://www.businessinsider.com/what-are-disney-adult-fans-2021-8">Disney adults</a>, families, and intergenerational groups</p><p><strong>Skip if:</strong> You don't want to vacation around a bunch of children and you crave peace and quiet</p><p><strong>Highlight: </strong>All <a href="https://www.businessinsider.com/recommend-disney-cruises-all-ages-pros-cons-from-frequent-traveler">Disney Cruise Line cruises</a> come with heaps of Disney magic in the way of special events and details. You won't want to miss character meet and greets, pirate-themed parties with fireworks, and passengers trading pins and leaving treats inside decorative pouches hung on stateroom doors.</p><p><strong>Possible cons: </strong>There is a significant child population on most of these cruises and not much adults-only entertainment. Dinners in the main dining can get loud, and, just like at the theme parks, there can be many queues for activities and other offerings.</p><p>Disney Cruise Line first set sail in the 1990s and has five active ships, with the new Disney Treasure set to debut in December. The line has sailings all around the globe, and most range from two to 15 nights.</p>

Disney Cruise Line

Cost: $$$ | Prices range from $422.40/pp for a two-night cruise from Sydney to Brisbane, Australia, to $5,592/pp for a 12-night Mediterranean with Greek Isles cruise

Ideal for: Disney adults , families, and intergenerational groups

Skip if: You don't want to vacation around a bunch of children and you crave peace and quiet

Highlight: All Disney Cruise Line cruises come with heaps of Disney magic in the way of special events and details. You won't want to miss character meet and greets, pirate-themed parties with fireworks, and passengers trading pins and leaving treats inside decorative pouches hung on stateroom doors.

Possible cons: There is a significant child population on most of these cruises and not much adults-only entertainment. Dinners in the main dining can get loud, and, just like at the theme parks, there can be many queues for activities and other offerings.

Disney Cruise Line first set sail in the 1990s and has five active ships, with the new Disney Treasure set to debut in December. The line has sailings all around the globe, and most range from two to 15 nights.

<p><strong>Cost:</strong> $$ | Prices range from $94/pp for a one-day Pacific Northwest cruise to a $27,399/pp for a 132-day Grand Voyage</p><p><strong>Ideal for: </strong>Music lovers and sophisticated world travelers who appreciate European hospitality and smaller ships</p><p><strong>Skip if:</strong> You're young, traveling with children, or want to party</p><p><strong>Highlight: </strong>All Holland America Line cruises come with a dose of Dutch hospitality and elegance. During my cruise with the line, I enjoyed the Dutch cuisine and <a href="https://www.hollandamerica.com/en/us/onboard-experiences/entertainment">Music Walk</a>, which features live performances at B.B. King's Blues Club, Rolling Stone Rock Room, and Billboard Onboard.</p><p><strong>Possible cons: </strong>The line takes its formal nights really seriously and attracts an older crowd.</p><p>Holland America Line has had ships sailing the globe for over 140 years. Its 11 ships cruise to more than 425 ports of call on seven continents, and cruises range from one to 118 days.</p>

Holland America Line

Cost: $$ | Prices range from $94/pp for a one-day Pacific Northwest cruise to a $27,399/pp for a 132-day Grand Voyage

Ideal for: Music lovers and sophisticated world travelers who appreciate European hospitality and smaller ships

Skip if: You're young, traveling with children, or want to party

Highlight: All Holland America Line cruises come with a dose of Dutch hospitality and elegance. During my cruise with the line, I enjoyed the Dutch cuisine and Music Walk , which features live performances at B.B. King's Blues Club, Rolling Stone Rock Room, and Billboard Onboard.

Possible cons: The line takes its formal nights really seriously and attracts an older crowd.

Holland America Line has had ships sailing the globe for over 140 years. Its 11 ships cruise to more than 425 ports of call on seven continents, and cruises range from one to 118 days.

The MSC Armonia was stuck in a port in Barcelona. <a>Emilio Morenatti/AP</a>

MSC Cruises

Cost: $ | Prices range from $80/pp for a three-night Mediterranean cruise to $46,149/pp for a 116-night World Cruise

Ideal for: Budget travelers, families, intergenerational groups, big groups

Skip if: You're looking for lots of food options or top-tier entertainment

Highlight: All MSC Cruises offer great value — and good pizza

Possible cons: The cruise fare does not include many dining options, and the evening entertainment skews old-school and a bit more basic than some other cruise lines that do Broadway-worthy shows.

MSC Cruises has 22 ships, with one more projected to join its fleet by 2025. The line has sailings all around the globe, and most range from two to 118 nights.

The Norwegian Joy cruise ship. <a>Derek Davis/Portland Press Herald via Getty Images</a>

Norwegian Cruise Line

Cost: $$ | Prices range from $79/pp for a one-day Australia cruise to $4,379/pp for a 10-day European cruise

Ideal for: Couples, families, and solo cruisers

Skip if: You're looking for structure, ballroom dancing, and fancy dinners

Highlight: All Norwegian Cruise Line cruises offer freestyle dining. You won't want to miss its Broadway-level shows and generous drink package, which is often offered complimentary.

Possible cons: This is not a cruise line for those who like formal dress codes, and some dislike the à la carte pricing.

Norwegian Cruise Line has been sailing the world for over 57 years. Its 19 ships visit 400-plus ports on seven continents, and cruises typically last one to 25 days.

<p><strong>Cost:</strong> $$ | Prices range from $127/pp for a two-day Australia Seacation to $24,098/pp for a 98-day World Cruise</p><p><strong>Ideal for: </strong>Mature solo travelers, couples, and retirees</p><p><strong>Skip if:</strong> You're looking for lots of activities and party vibes. <a href="https://www.businessinsider.com/reasons-princess-cruises-best-to-book-from-frequent-cruiser-2023-9">Princess Cruises</a> tend to attract an older crowd, and the shows and activities reflect this. There aren't many events offered each day. On the three cruises I sailed with Princess, the entertainment was primarily musicals, piano players, and singers backed by an orchestra. There were only a handful of children on each cruise.</p><p><strong>Highlight: </strong>All Princess Cruises offer Discovery and Animal Planet-exclusive shore excursions — and many have an excellent onboard lecture series.</p><p><strong>Possible cons: </strong>This is not a cruise line for those who like to party, love water slides, or have teenagers.</p><p>Founded in 1965, Princess Cruises has 16 ships that sail to 330 destinations worldwide on itineraries from three to 111 days</p>

Princess Cruises

Cost: $$ | Prices range from $127/pp for a two-day Australia Seacation to $24,098/pp for a 98-day World Cruise

Ideal for: Mature solo travelers, couples, and retirees

Skip if: You're looking for lots of activities and party vibes. Princess Cruises tend to attract an older crowd, and the shows and activities reflect this. There aren't many events offered each day. On the three cruises I sailed with Princess, the entertainment was primarily musicals, piano players, and singers backed by an orchestra. There were only a handful of children on each cruise.

Highlight: All Princess Cruises offer Discovery and Animal Planet-exclusive shore excursions — and many have an excellent onboard lecture series.

Possible cons: This is not a cruise line for those who like to party, love water slides, or have teenagers.

Founded in 1965, Princess Cruises has 16 ships that sail to 330 destinations worldwide on itineraries from three to 111 days

<p>The cruise line says its menus will include regional dishes that reflect the itinerary's destinations.</p>

Royal Caribbean

Cost: $$ | Prices range from $196/pp for a two-night Hong Kong cruise to $8,266/pp for a 13-night Arctic Circle cruise

Ideal for: Couples, families, and intergenerational travelers

Highlight: All Royal Caribbean cruises come with fun activities and a broad range of entertainment options. Some have the Ultimate Abyss , the tallest slide at sea, or the glass capsule North Star , the tallest viewing deck on a cruise ship. You won't want to miss the Oasis Class ships' seven distinctly themed neighborhoods and Royal Promenade, a mall-like thoroughfare with shops, restaurants, and lounges that runs the length of the ship.

Possible cons: Many of its ships are mega-ships, so this isn't the line for you if you want a more intimate trip.

Founded in 1968, Royal Caribbean sails to about 240 destinations on six continents. Cruises range from two to 22 nights.

Royal Caribbean has many of the world's largest cruise ships in its fleet of more than 20 vessels.

<p><strong><span>Cost:</span></strong><span> $$ | Prices range from $415/pp for a four-night roundtrip cruise from England to Amsterdam to a $3,072/pp for a 13-night Canada, Carolina, and Miami cruise</span></p><p><strong><span>Ideal for: </span></strong><span>Child-free travelers, health enthusiasts, the glamorous, and those who don't like strict rules</span></p><p><strong><span>Skip if:</span></strong><span> You want a classic cruise, need structure, or can't handle playfulness (and, sometimes, naughtiness)</span></p><p><strong><span>Highlight: </span></strong><span>All </span><a href="https://www.businessinsider.com/virgin-voyages-things-to-know-before-booking-from-frequent-cruiser-2024-1"><span>Virgin Voyages</span></a><span> are child-free, and everyone gets unlimited WiFi, access to group fitness classes, and gratuities included in their fare. You won't want to miss its famous Scarlet Night, 20 eateries (every venue is considered specialty dining), and eclectic shows like "Untitled DanceShowPartyThing."</span></p><p><strong><span>Possible cons: </span></strong><span>There aren't traditional song-and-dance shows, assigned dining times, and nightly portrait photography</span></p><p><span>Virgin Voyages has been sailing its "Lady Ships" </span>inspired by superyachts <span>since 2021. Three nearly identical ships are currently in service, and a fourth one is set to set sail later this year.</span></p><p><span>Virgin Voyages sails to about 100 destinations in Australia, Europe, the Mediterranean, the Caribbean, and the United Kingdom on cruises ranging from three to 16 nights.</span></p>

Virgin Voyages

Cost: $$ | Prices range from $415/pp for a four-night roundtrip cruise from England to Amsterdam to a $3,072/pp for a 13-night Canada, Carolina, and Miami cruise

Ideal for: Child-free travelers, health enthusiasts, the glamorous, and those who don't like strict rules

Skip if: You want a classic cruise, need structure, or can't handle playfulness (and, sometimes, naughtiness)

Highlight: All Virgin Voyages are child-free, and everyone gets unlimited WiFi, access to group fitness classes, and gratuities included in their fare. You won't want to miss its famous Scarlet Night, 20 eateries (every venue is considered specialty dining), and eclectic shows like "Untitled DanceShowPartyThing."

Possible cons: There aren't traditional song-and-dance shows, assigned dining times, and nightly portrait photography

Virgin Voyages has been sailing its "Lady Ships" inspired by superyachts since 2021. Three nearly identical ships are currently in service, and a fourth one is set to set sail later this year.

Virgin Voyages sails to about 100 destinations in Australia, Europe, the Mediterranean, the Caribbean, and the United Kingdom on cruises ranging from three to 16 nights.

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IMAGES

  1. Holland America Cruise Line History

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  2. Newsreel footage of Holland-America Line’s TSS Rotterdam 1915 and SS

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  3. Volendam Ship Stats & Information- Holland America Line Cruise

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  4. Plaub Tech News: The 4 classes of Holland America ships, explained

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  5. First look: Inside Holland America's first new ship in years

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  6. The evolution of heritage: A first look at Holland America's new

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VIDEO

  1. Explore Holland's Nieuw Statendam: A Captivating Ship Tour

  2. Holland America Cruise Lines MS Rotterdam, Review of Balcony Stateroom 8080

  3. Nieuw Statendam, Holland America Line Ship Visit in DOVER, UK

  4. Glacier Guarantee from Holland America Line #AlaskaCruise

  5. Holland America Cruise Experience

  6. Are drinks free on Holland America?

COMMENTS

  1. Holland America Line

    Holland America Line (HAL) is a US-owned cruise line, a subsidiary of Carnival Corporation & plc headquartered in Seattle, Washington, United States. Holland America Line was founded in Rotterdam , Netherlands, and from 1873 to 1989, it operated as a Dutch shipping line, a passenger line, a cargo line and a cruise line operating primarily ...

  2. Holland America Cruise Line History

    The history of Holland America Line spans well over a century; its first ship, the 1,684-ton Rotterdam, set sail on a voyage between Holland and New York in 1873.

  3. Login

    Login to your Holland America Line account to make a payment, book a cruise, and more!

  4. Homepage

    Cruise Deals This site was designed to commemorate Holland America Line's 150-year history (1873-2023). For the latest company information and news, please visit hollandamerica.com.

  5. HISTORY OF THE HOLLAND AMERICA LINE

    The Holland America Line was founded in 1873 as the Dutch-America Steamship Company (Dutch: Nederlandsch-Amerikaansche Stoomvaart Maatschappij), a shipping and passenger line. Because it was headquartered in Rotterdam and provided service to the Americas, it became known as Holland America Line (HAL). Its headquarters are now in Seattle ...

  6. HAL-150

    Explore Our History. Over the last 150 years, we have transported guests to every corner of the world. Join us as the current carries us through 150 years of Holland America Line. Explore The Timeline.

  7. Holland America Line then and now: 150 years of history at sea

    Holland America Line retraced its first voyage from 150 years ago last month, which originally took place on the Rotterdam steamship in 1872. The anniversary sailing kicked off a celebration of ...

  8. A Firsthand Look at Holland America Line's History for Its 150th

    On April 18, 2023, Holland America Line (HAL) celebrated its 150th anniversary where it all started in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, and I was there to experience a wide span of the company's history in an abridged, but fascinating fashion. Hotel New York . For two nights, I stayed at Hotel New York in what was once HAL's headquarters and terminal building, for a period of time.

  9. Login

    Since 1873 Sailing 150 Years. Login to your Holland America Line account to make a payment, book a cruise, and more!

  10. Holland America Line

    Over the last 150+ years, Holland America Line has transported guests to every corner of the world. During this time, the celebrated cruise line has embarked on historic cruises, escorted millions of passengers and celebrated many "firsts" along the way. Here's a colorful glimpse at this company's proud history.

  11. HAL History and its ships Past and Present

    HAL History and its ships Past and Present. On this page you will find the history of the Holland America Line in six parts. Also individual histories of various company ships. It starts with the Ariadne, which was the ship that HAL chartered for its first voyage, as the Rotterdam and Maas were delayed at the builders.

  12. History of the Holland America Line…

    With a 135-year maritime history, Holland America Line is one of the oldest names in cruising but remains dedicated to offering guests 'once in a lifetime experiences' by keeping up with the times.

  13. Holland America Line

    The vessels of Holland America also reflect the firm's history through their names. In the beginning, HAL's ships carried both passengers and cargo. The suffix indicated the ship's primary ...

  14. Holland America

    Holland America Group's current President is Jan Swartz (since December 2020) who is the Group President of four of Carnival's brands/subsidiaries (Princess Cruises, Holland America Line, Seabourn, P&O Australia) plus HAP-Holland America Princess Alaska Tours. Jan Swartz also manages all inter-group operations. Company history and changes

  15. Holland America Line Celebrates 150 Years of Maritime History

    Quite a few tidbits of history have been shared about Holland America Line during this 150th-anniversary Cruise. Here are a few: During the years of Prohibition, from 1920 to 1933, HAL came up with the idea to take passengers on an overnight Booze Cruise. Once the ship reached the three nautical mile line (a now obsolete maritime boundary ...

  16. The ultimate guide to Holland America cruise ships and itineraries

    Holland America is a cruise line with a focus on quality and high standards of service. The line's ships offer excellent food, tasteful decor and a variety of live music. ... It takes pride in its heritage, and its ties to immigration and historical events make it a compelling draw for history buffs and travelers interested in genealogy.

  17. Holland America Line

    Experience a classic cruise with Holland America. Learn about Holland America's ships, onboard experiences, itineraries and HAL's Signature of Excellence. ... Holland America Line has used their history and cruising pedigree to create a semi-formal, yet innovative fleet of cruise ships. Each class in the fleet boasts unique and intriguing ...

  18. A Look Back

    In the 1980's, Holland America abandoned New York cruise trade and focused extensively on their West Coast Alaska operations with Westours - A tour operator, primarily in Alaska, which Holland America purchased a year earlier. In the winter months, the Rotterdam would sail in the Caribbean.

  19. The history of the ss Rotterdam

    The legendary former flagship of the Holland America Line, the ss Rotterdam, has a rich history and is well known for its cultural-historical value.

  20. Find Best Cruise Deals and Packages

    Join Holland America Line for an unforgettable cruise experience! Enjoy ships, exciting destinations, and other services. Find and book your perfect cruise today!

  21. Historic Database of All Past Cruise Ship Itineraries

    We can provide data of past cruise voyages in an excel file with complete information organized in the following format: cruise ship, date, ports, and arrival-departure times. Please note there is a service charge fee for the past cruise itineraries. These fees are different depending on the service and requested data volume.

  22. Transatlantic Europe Cruises

    Sail from USA to Europe and celebrates centuries of nautical history. Reserve your spot for a transatlantic cruise full of wonder and excitement.

  23. Caribbean Cruises

    Sail into the vibrant heart of the Caribbean on our cruises. Book now for sun-soaked beaches, turquoise waters, and a journey through paradise.

  24. 2024-2025 Alaska Cruise Tours

    Experience the ultimate adventure with our Alaska Land Cruise tours. Explore the stunning wilderness and majestic glaciers on a Holland America Line cruise.

  25. Northern Europe Cruises

    Northern Europe Cruises. Our Northern Europe cruises mix seldom-explored locales with famed ports and overnights in alluring cities, such as Copenhagen, Reykjavík, and more. Glide through Norway's fjords, explore Iceland's lava fields or tour England's storied castles on a British Isles cruise. Choose between convenient roundtrip voyages ...

  26. How can I check my cruise history for accuracy

    You can view your cruise history, Star-Level, and bonus Cruise Day credits in the "My Account" section at hollandamerica.com.

  27. Best 2024 and 2025 Asia Cruises

    Explore the rich cultures and cities of Asia on our cruises with Holland America. Book now for an immersive journey through the amazing East landscapes.

  28. Thinking of booking a cruise? Here are the lines you should

    Highlight: All Holland America Line cruises come with a dose of Dutch hospitality and elegance. ... Holland America Line has had ships sailing the globe for over 140 years. Its 11 ships cruise to ...

  29. Holland America Cruise Line History

    The history of Holland America Line spans well over a century; its first ship, the 1,684-ton Rotterdam, set sail on a voyage between Holland and New York in 1873.

  30. Alaska Cruises: A Cheat Sheet to Planning the Perfect Adventure

    Considering an Alaska cruise? From when to cruise to Alaska to how much an Alaska cruise costs and the best itineraries, Cruise Critic's experts have your back.