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Found 90 results

  1. When (on which stops) will ship time not equal phone time on the Westerdam Alaska southbound cruise? Where the get-off-the-ship ports are: - Haines - Juneau - Ketchikan Do you have any tricks to help you remember when (which days) the ship time is different so that you don't miss the departure?
  2. Westerdam will be at the CT dock from 1000-2200. Also in port are Royal Princess at the FKL dock from 0630-1700, Crystal Symphony at the AJ dock from 0700-1800, Azamara Quest tendering from 0900-2300, and Star Princess at the AS dock from 1230-2215. Cloudiness in the morning will turn into rain showers during the afternoon. The high will be 66F/19C and the low 54F/12C. Sunrise is at 4:19 am and sunset at 9:48 pm. The PTZtv webcam can be found at https://www.juneauharborwebcam.com/. Next up: Noordam on Thursday.
  3. I'm confused with the changes to guest lecturers on HAL. I'm also curious about the entertainment on the longer Antarctica cruise. We realize things change, but based on your experience, what is your best guess? 1) Are we likely to have specific guest lecturer(s) on the 20 day Antarctica itinerary? 2) Will HAL staff the full music entertainment? There are more 'scenic cruising' days on this itinerary than we have ever experienced (I believe 8 days). As such, we are likely going to want full entertainment normally staffed on Westerdam: BB King/Dueling Pianos/Etc... Is it likely they will staff this itinerary with the same entertainment they would a shorter cruise? TIA :)
  4. Never been on a cruise before - we are looking at booking a Vancouver roundtrip Inside Passage cruise this September - we can choose either the Noordam on Sept 15th or the Westerdam on the 22nd (this one is a bit better deal for pricing) ... any advice or recommendations (and feedback about weather!) is much appreciated.
  5. Holland America Westerdam Alaskan Cruise/Tour June 1st to June 13th Of all the bears that could kill me, it will be the gummy that comes the closest. I apologize upfront, I’m like that uncle that everyone has who, when he returns from vacation invites everyone over to look at his vacation photos and listen to his boring stories. Yes, that means if you read my entire report you will be bored to tears. Alaska has been on my bucket list for a very long time. With my 73 birthday approaching, I decided last year it was time to book an Alaskan cruise/tour before the Grim Reaper could catch up to me. In May 2018 I found a cruise/tour with Holland America that would fit my budget and still provide me with the Alaskan experience I wanted. The land portion of the tour was exactly what I was looking for. I sent out an email to many of our friends and family about the trip and invited them to join us. I was surprised by the rush of people who expressed interest and wanted more info about this Alaskan cruise. When the dust settled 7 couples, including me and my wife Joyce, booked the Alaskan Cruise/Tour. With the exception of one couple, the rest of us could be referred to as seniors…and not the high school variety. We booked the Holland America D5C – 11 day double Denali trip and at the time the gratuities were included in the cruise fare as part of a fare promotion. We all put a deposit down and booked balcony cabins on the Upper Verandah deck (deck 6) of the Westerdam for the June 2nd cruise departing from Vancouver. In July ’18 we booked the shore excursions we planned to take through Holland. I know, I know, it’s cheaper to do it on your own but I prefer doing things by the KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid) method. I’m willing to pay more for the convenience of not having to organize. The land portion of our tour would go from the debarkation port of Seward to Anchorage for a night, then to Denali NP for two nights, then to Fairbanks for one night. In Denali NP the Tundra Wilderness Tour was included in our cruise fare as was the Discovery II riverboat tour in Fairbanks. For our second day in Denali and after our morning Tundra Wilderness Tour we booked the evening Covered Wagon ride and dinner. In mid-January this year I fell off a ladder and broke my right ankle in three places and badly damaged the ligaments. After the surgery to repair my ankle I wasn’t allowed to put weight on it for seven weeks. The Orthopedic surgeon promised that I would be very mobile for the cruise/tour. There was nothing for me to do for the next 7 weeks but watch television and eat snacks. I kinda freaked me out when I saw the x-ray of my ankle and all the hardware that had been installed. After 10 weeks I started physical therapy for my ankle. In April 2019 we booked one more excursion, the Anchorage Flightseeing Safari, through Holland America. This would be a half hour flightseeing tour of the Anchorage area on a floatplane. Yikes, in mid-May there were two different floatplane crashes in Ketchikan. One crash was a mid-air collision of two planes resulting in six dead and 10 injured. Some of the dead and injured were passengers from a Princess cruise ship. The other crash involved a single plane and resulted in the death of the two onboard. After discussing the crashes with my wife we decided to go ahead and take the death-defying Flightseeing Safari. At 6 AM on May 31st we did the online check-in with Air Canada. We paid $30 each for each piece of our checked luggage. In the afternoon we drove to our hotel, The Marriott St. Louis, to spend the night and is very close to the airport we would be flying out of on June 1st. JUNE 1ST, OUR ALASKAN JOURNEY BEGINS. Although I was quite mobile, my ankle was still swollen and I had some residual discomfort from the surgery. This discomfort affected me more than I wanted and because of it I didn’t take very good notes or as many pictures as I normally do on trips. At least that’s the excuse I’m going to use. Our alarm was set for 3:15 AM so we could take the hotel’s 4AM shuttle to the airport. It’s was a very short ride to the airport and we were checked in at Air Canada by 4:30 AM for our 6:15 flight. Our flight departed on time and we arrived in Toronto at 8:45 AM EDT. This was a small 48 passenger plane and when we deboarded we used the steps that are built into the plane. That was a first for me, I’m used to walking off planes via skywalks connected to the plane. Passing through customs was quick and easy. Unfortunately we had a seven and a half hour layover before our flight to Vancouver. Killing time in an airport is never easy. One of the couples that joined us on this trip had booked the same flights so at least we had another couple to talk to as we waited for our next flight. Our plane departed Toronto for Vancouver at 4:15 EDT and we arrived in Vancouver at 5:58 PDT. After retrieving our luggage we walked outside and caught a cab ($35) to our hotel, the Days Inn by Wyndham, which is located just a couple of blocks from the cruise terminal. The cab ride was the most terrifying I’ve ever had and that includes the cab rides in Egypt. I don’t recommend the Days Inn, the room was very small, expensive ($331.54), and there was only one small elevator to serve the 7 or 8 floors of the hotel. Three of the other couples going on the cruise with us were staying at this same hotel so we met in the lobby and went to dinner together at a nearby restaurant. After dinner Joyce and I called it a night and went back to our room where Joyce made an ice pack for my ankle. In hindsight I should have cancelled the cruise when I broke my ankle and planned a much later cruise. Oh well, hindsight is 20/20. I have to stop for now I will continued this report tomorrow.
  6. My first time on HAL coming up. Westerdam Alaska Vancouver to Seward. Been 4 + years since our last cruise. I see there’s a thread for first timers but 168 pages.....? Not sure I can get thru that. I know from years ago there’s lots of inside info on this board on what’s good/ bad, what not to miss, and lots of recommendations that a newbie wouldn’t be aware of. I don’t think I’ll have time to get thru all the threads on here this week, so if anyone has tips I should know about please post. Never been on HAL and it’s been some time since our last cruise so I think I need to catch up. Thanks!
  7. Which bars on the Westerdam serve a Wang Wang? Asking for a friend.
  8. It's nice to have two HAL ships in port but, unfortunately, we will only get glimpses of them because of their docks. Westerdam will be at the CT dock from 0800-1800 and Amsterdam at the FKL dock from 1400-2300. Also in port are Norwegian Jewel at the AJ dock from 0700-1315 and Eclipse at the AS dock from 0730-2000. The forecast is for "considerable cloudiness with occasional showers" (60% chance of rain). High will be 65F/18C and the low 55F/13C. Sunrise is at 4:09 am and sunset at 9:57 pm. The PTZtv webcam can be found at https://www.juneauharborwebcam.com/. Next up: Volendam on Friday.
  9. from: https://avcams.faa.gov/ then click on the dot on Seward
  10. Posted this also on the Alaska boards but thought I'd ask here too..... We have sailed on HAL out of Seward before and we were able to take our luggage to the dock at 11am and check in, then leave for the day. This time, we will be coming in from Orca Island so we won't be getting to the ship that early, but we are meeting friends onboard who are staying in Seward for a couple of days beforehand and they would like to get onboard early. Can anyone who has sailed out of Seward this year tell me what time I can tell them boarding actually starts? Also, we have previously just slapped one of our cruise luggage tags on a case of water and sent it with our luggage and had it delivered to our room. Anyone tried this in Seward this year? Thanks!
  11. Westerdam will be at the CT dock from 1000-2200. Also in port are Royal Princess at the FKL dock from 0630-1700, Star Legend tendering from 0700-1500, Star Princess at the AS dock from 1230-2230, and Sun Princess at the AJ dock from 1300-2200. Juneau is having another nice day with only a 10% chance of rain, partly cloudy skies, and a high of 78F/26C (low is 56F/13C). Sunrise is at 3:59 am and sunset at 10:09 pm. The PTZtv webcam can be found at https://www.juneauharborwebcam.com/. Next up: Noordam on Thursday.
  12. Can anyone confirm exactly where (& how many) electrical outlets and USB ports are located in these cabins?
  13. Motion activated light at the base of the closets cannot be deactivated. It is great if you want/need it...very irritating when you don’t want a light kicking on when you get up in the night. Would be nice if it could be turned off. Not enough help in the Lido. Only 2 people behind the main food station...no one working sandwiches. No one was picking up dirty dishes or cleaning tables in the Explorer Lounge. Happy hours were only in Billboard Onboard and Ocean Bar. Nothing in the Explorer Lounge. Those are not really complaints as we are very chill cruisers...just letting people know. In Ketchikan today...overcast and low 60’s...beautiful. Yesterday saw dolphins and whales...
  14. Westerdam will be at the CT dock from 0800-1800. Also in port are Norwegian Jewel at the AJ dock from 0700-1315, Eclipse blocking our view at the AS dock from 0730-2000, and one of Roy's favorites, Crystal Symphony at the FKL dock from 1200-2300. It is going to be another mostly sunny day in Juneau with - wait for it - a high of 82F/28C!!! The low will be 57F/14 C. Sunrise is at 3:53 am and sunset at 10:08 pm. The PTZtv webcam can be found at https://www.juneauharborwebcam.com/. Next up: Volendam on Friday.
  15. Hi all , we were on the Volendam a couple of years ago and our cruise port in Shanghai was right near The Bund . For those who have been in Shanghai since on the Westerdam was the ship able and allowed to get to that port or did you have to go to one of the other Cruise Ports near the mouth of the Huangpu river which is a fair distance from the Bund area . I am contemplating a cruise on her in the spring and could possibly be twice in Shanghai so I think it is important to know . I appreciate hearing about your experiences . Tony
  16. Sailing on the the Westerdam June 30-July 7. Anyone know which nights the Gala Nights are scheduled for? TIA
  17. For the last several years, I have created "live" threads for my HAL cruises. The goals for this Alaska thread are to solicit questions and obtain answers for those who follow on the Westerdam, verify changing HAL policies, identify ship's officers, provide my impressions of onboard facilities, identify exceptional menu items, and comment on hotel operations for starters. Even though I will be on only one of the many Denali itineraries, I will do my best to get answers for all of the itineraries and I do encourage those onboard with different itineraries to lend their experiences to this thread. On to Alaska.
  18. Westerdam will be spending Wednesday at the CT dock from 1000-2200. Other ships in port are Royal Princess at the FKL dock from 0630-1700, Grand Princess at the AJ dock from 0730-2100, Viking Orion tendering from 0800-1730, and Star Princess at the AS dock from 1230-2215. The weather is starting to get a little better with only a 50% chance of rain and it is supposed to be in the morning with the afternoon being cloudy. High will also be a little warmer with 60F/16C and the low 47F/8C. Sunrise is at 3:50 am and sunset at 10:08 pm. The PTZtv webcam can be found at https://www.juneauharborwebcam.com/. Next up: Noordam on Thursday.
  19. Another HAL early arrival with Westerdam at the CT dock from 0800-1800. Joining Westerdam is one of my other favorite ships, Queen Elizabeth, at the FKL dock from 1400-2200. Also in port are Norwegian Jewel at the AJ dock from 0700-1315 and Eclipse at the AS dock from 0730-2200. Thursday's weather is showing some improvement with only a 20% chance of rain. The prediction is for clouds early and partial sunshine (!) later in the day. High will be 62F/17C and the low 48F/9C. Sunrise is at 3:52 am and sunset at 10:05 pm. The PTZtv webcam can be found at https://www.juneauharborwebcam.com/. Next up: Volendam on Friday.
  20. Westerdam will be at the CT dock from 1000-2200. Wednesday is a relatively quiet day with only two other ships in port. Royal Princess will be at the FKL dock from 0630-1700 and Star Princess will be at the AS dock from 1230-2215 so we should get some good views of Westerdam before she arrives provided the weather and webcam person cooperate. There is a 60% chance of rain but it is supposed to be in the morning with just a cloudy afternoon. High should be 60F/16C and the low 45F/7C. Sunrise is at 3:57 am and sunset at 9:56 pm. The PTZtv webcam can be found at https://www.juneauharborwebcam.com/. Next up: Noordam on Thursday.
  21. Soon we'll fly to Anchorage, Alaska to visit for a few days, then use HAL's bus transfer to Seward to board the Westerdam. Has anyone recently traveled from their hotel in Anchorage to a HAL ship in Seward? Does the bus pick one up from the hotel, must we assemble in the Eagan Center, or must we take a cab to the airport to meet the bus? Your recent experience will be much appreciated. Many thanks. :)
  22. A few people have asked for live reviews from Alaska. . . . We are in NS on the Westie, aft wrap. Room is very clean and good repair. Balcony is huge. Breakfast service in the Pinnacle was A plus the Neptune lounge needs a letter above A! These ladies want to make you happy. I was able to upgrade the SBP through them easily. Snacks are higher quality than expected and changed out often. Both have been awesome. Ruth will fix anything. Even get you into the Pinnacle when it is all booked up. Wines on the SPB not to my taste. Food in the dining room last night was Luke warm, but service was excellent and quicker than the past cruises. The blues venue was very good last night and pretty heavy Casino action. Lido was a good choice for lunch and not crowded. Many coaches arrived late. Muster drill at 7:15 crew is all smiles. Lots of hellos and good mornings. Beverage service seems quick anywhere on the ship. i will have updates as we go.
  23. It's an early arrival day for the Thursday ships. Westerdam will be at the CT dock from 0800-1800. Also in port are Norwegian Jewel at the AJ dock from 0700-1315, Eclipse at the AS dock from 0730-2000, Viking Orion (first time I remember seeing a Viking ship in Juneau) tendering from 0800-1730, and Grand Princess at the FKL dock from 0800-2100. NG Sea Bird will also be in Juneau from 0600-2100 but is at the ICT dock which we usually can't see on the webcam. A cloudy day with 0% chance of rain is forecast with a high of 71F/22C and a low of 51F/10C. Sunrise is at 4:04 am and sunset at 9:48 pm. The PTZtv webcam can be found at https://www.juneauharborwebcam.com/. Next up: Volendam on Friday.
  24. I recently completed the Trans-Pacific crossing on Westerdam in a partially obstructed view cabin (4087). I was very happy with the cabin as the floor to ceiling window allowed in plenty of light, the position of the bed was good, and on a crossing that was cold and sometimes pretty rough I still enjoyed the benefits of the view. You should be mindful that from time to time a crew member will appear outside your window checking equipment. I only noticed this in port so just kept the sheer curtain drawn to avoid a surprise. The central location was really nice as well.
  25. Westerdam will be at the CT dock from 1000-2200. Also in port are Royal Princess at the FKL dock from 0630-1700, Seven Seas Mariner at the AJ dock from 0700-1400, and Star Princess at the AS dock 1230-2215 (so we will be able to see Westie as she docks). Wednesday weather is predicted to be much like Tuesday's. There is only a 10% chance of rain and it should be cloudy in the morning and sunshine later. High should be 63F/17C and the low 46F/8C. Sunrise is at 4:19 am and sunset at 9:30 pm. The PTZtv webcam can be found at https://www.juneauharborwebcam.com/. Next up: Noordam on Thursday.
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