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North to Alaska! Live from Volendam (and Vancouver) - May 22-29, 2019

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We are doing the Seward to Vancouver cruise in July, and spending several days in Vancouver afterwards.  I took notes on some of the places you went to. Love your pictures!

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You sailed by my house an hour ago.  It's 9:40 pm, and you are cruising through some of the most beautiful scenery you'll ever see!  Enjoy.

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We will be on Volendam in June, looking forward to see all your posts

First time for us , we will be travelling from Australia

Interested to see if there is any excursions that you can purchase when we arrive in each port.

Also would you be able to send us the Bar menu especially the beer prices,

still deciding if we will purchase the drinks package

Have Fun

 

Many Thanks

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Wonderful report.

 

Your hotel room looks great.

 

Glad you had no problems (long lines) getting onto the ship.

 

Pictures are great.

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Great pictures, can't wait for our July 21 Vancouver departure on the Noordam.

Edited by terrydtx

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Day 2, Thursday, May 23

 

What happens when a boat full of Australians board an Alaskan cruise in Vancouver? I don’t know what I’m going to found out. 

 

Seriously. This trip is roughly 65% Australian, 20% Canadian and then everyone else. Australia is a loooooomg way from Vancouver so it surprised me. But Aussies are fantastic, fun people so yay!

 

Also before we jump into the first full day onboard be aware we don’t partake in any onboard activities too often. They aren’t our thing. And some know everything is geared toward shopping or jewelry or a spa we are even less inclined to participate in anything. This nonsense has us kinda leaning away from cruises in general as every line has morphed into this. I digress. 

 

And for those that care, here is who is in command of the Volendam currently. 

 

Captain: Friso Nicoolas Kramer Gezegd Freher

Hotel Director: Simon Tanner 

 

Dinner last night wasn’t too bad for the first night. Service was a little slower than we like but we have had much worse on the first night so no complaints. The rainbow trout was actually excellent and the banana crisp was crispy and banana-y. A+. 

 

The real excitement during dinner was crossing paths with the Maasdam in the Narrows - horn blasts were properly acknowledged and all enjoyed the quick view of a sister ship. We haven’t sailed on her but I know she is well loved and happy HAL has decided to use her in an adventurous way. 

 

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After dinner we grabbed a negroni at the piano bar - some dude named Lee is the piano bar entertainer. He is okay I guess, we didn’t feel any strong vibe to stay so once the glass was empty we bolted to bed. 

 

We didn’t set an alarm this morning. We were tired and knew we had no plans today so decided to sleep in. It was GLORIOUS. I love sleep. Can I get a cheer for sleep?

 

Anyway we woke up and made it to breakfast about 15 minutes before the Lido closed. We timed that well. 

 

The Volendam has something I haven’t noticed at breakfast - a crepe station. I just grabbed some random stuff this morning because I wasn’t too hungry but I’m excited to try a crepe. 

 

We kinda wandered aimlessly and ended up at the Future Cruise Consultant’s desk to grab some itineraries to get ideas for our next trip. 

 

Which is where you all come in. Due to work we are confined to 10-11 day trips (we have already done the Panama Canal, Canada/NE, Bermuda, all the Caribbean). So the Med from Rome or Northern Europe from Copenhagen? What day you?

 

Oh yes we are also sailing in beautiful territory.

 

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We went back to our cabin to read and it was cold. Like I never get cold and I was freezing. The thermostat was on full heat but no air was combing from the vents. A call to the front desk and the hotel manager and chief technician showed up with a thermometer and it was 45 degrees in our room. Four technicians arrived and had ripped apart a wall in the hallway when we left for a 2 p.m. talk on the poets we are visiting. I certainly hope they can correct the heat issue - tomorrow’s high in Juneau is 44! 

 

After the port talk - a waste of time as I had feared but the theater was like 25 degrees warmer than our cabin - we decided to head to the shops to see what was on sale. This is always a highlight for us because onboard concessions are always awful. YMMV of course so no disrespect if the shops are full of things you can’t love without. 

 

The special treat today was a sweater that was accidentally printed upside down. Here are two sweaters size-by-size. See the difference? Yikes. 

 

4-CBE5532-0689-4607-9-D49-B8317271-A578. 

 

The wife had a yoga class this afternoon while I walked 5 or 6 miles out on the promenade. Ship-shape, not shaped like a ship, is our mantra. 

 

As I post no progress on any warmth in our room. 

 

Dinner tonight is the first of two Gala nights. Here is the menu:

 

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More about dinner tomorrow from Juneau, unless we freeze to death overnight. We are taking the Tracy Arm excursion so hopefully I’ll have lots of photos to post. 

 

More then. 

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Thank you for the wonderful pictures,  I leave Saturday on the NA and doing the Tracy Arm excursion as well.  Looking forward to your posts and I hope things warm up for you!

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Loving your posts and photos!  And thanks so much for posting the Main Dining Room Menu and commenting on what you had.  We are on the Oosterdam round trip Seattle in just 9 days and I understand the Alaska menus are the same.  Enjoy your cruise and I am looking forward to more.

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Just to update all, they got the heat fixed. A damper was stuck which slowed cold air to keep coming into the room - they fixed it within two hours but it took a bit longer for the chill to go away. 

 

We are warm now. 

 

Also the onboard Internet is pretty good 1 one of the better speeds I have experienced on a ship. 

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Good to have heat instead of AC in your cabin in Alaska. Enjoy 

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Great report.

 

Crepes have been on all the ships we have been on for a few years now.

 

Glad that they found out the problem and you have heat.  

 

I see the difference in the shirts.  Sad they didn't catch that and send them back to the manufacturer and demand their money back.

 

Great picture of the Maasdam.

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We had Captain Friso on Zaandam last September/October.  We liked his noon talks and he kept us safe.

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We have sailed this itinerary twice on the Volendam .. 3rd time next week.  Will be curious to see if Tracy Arm was accessible today.  Early June 2017 the excursion went to Endicott Arm / Dawes Glacier  ... TA isn't normally accessible till mid June.  It was still a great excursion.  Enjoy.

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YAY for Banana Crisp!  (hopefully you had it a la mode ☺️)

 

Curious if you have received your HAL tote bag yet and if so, is it by any chance one that's specific to Alaska?  I saw someone with one on Volendam on our Panama Canal cruise in December and now covet one (yes, covet!!).  Would be lovely if they are doing something similar this year for all the ships sailing up there (we'll be on the 14 night Amsterdam itinerary at the end of July).

 

Enjoy!

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Day 3, Friday, May 24

 

Last night was our first Gala night. It was fun. The snails, sole, lamb and Black Forest cake were great. As was the nightly Wang Wang in Oceans Bar chatting with a few of the hundreds of Australians onboard. 

 

Today we took the Tracy Arm excursion and boarded directly from the Volendam. We were able to travel down Tracy Arm and visit the South Sawyer glacier. 

 

We saw Orcas, bears, eagles, sea lions, harbor seals, icebergs and a glacier. I can’t really muster words that pass my pictures so here are those in lieu of words. 

 

2-F11747-B-F0-E2-4-BEF-BABA-B792-B06-AA0 

 

33-F2-A033-56-DA-4563-B704-86-C50040-C27 

 

4110-D71-D-7238-42-AD-9930-6-F9-A24-E327 

 

5040-A142-571-A-4-B1-A-9-ECB-A761853-EE4 

 

5340-F089-E80-F-4263-9409-78-D4-CD796-D1 

 

6752-F351-7850-4-FCC-9642-0-C8-AEE252-D9 

 

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9-BF3922-F-F012-482-E-B4-AA-5-BBEDF7-E23 

 

ADC2-D909-9334-42-DB-AB71-836308266-D5-B 

 

CAD521-CE-819-B-4-FF2-8-DA6-563325-EC52- 

 

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DC18-EA07-BC3-F-43-A5-B35-C-5-C5800-CC0- 

 

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Basically this is the best cruise excursion we have ever taken. I’ll book this cruise again solely to taker this trip again. 

 

Once back to Juneau we went on a walk and discovered Devil’s Club Brewing Company. Feeling as if we deserved a beer we popped in and met the nicest people you can imagine. We ordered beers and a pretzel. It was fantastic. 

 

We then felt we needed more beer so needed to Hamger on the Wharf for a more beers. We wandered around a bit before heading back to the ship for dinner. I’m a bit drunk to me honest lol. 

 

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Here are tonight’s menus. 

 

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Tomorrow we are in Skagway and taken a Chikoot tour to Bennet Lake. 

 

More tomorrow from tonight’s dinner and tomorrow’s trip. 

 

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10 hours ago, zelker said:

YAY for Banana Crisp!  (hopefully you had it a la mode ☺️)

 

Curious if you have received your HAL tote bag yet and if so, is it by any chance one that's specific to Alaska?  I saw someone with one on Volendam on our Panama Canal cruise in December and now covet one (yes, covet!!).  Would be lovely if they are doing something similar this year for all the ships sailing up there (we'll be on the 14 night Amsterdam itinerary at the end of July).

 

Enjoy!

No tote bags anymore apparently.  

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Enjoying your review, super photos, thank you.

Pleased that the temperature of your stateroon is now satisfactory.

What category stateroom do you have?

Do you  have any  indoor photos  of  the Volendam to share?

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23 minutes ago, erewhon said:

Enjoying your review, super photos, thank you.

Pleased that the temperature of your stateroon is now satisfactory.

What category stateroom do you have?

Do you  have any  indoor photos  of  the Volendam to share?

BD Vista Suite 

 

no interior photos but the lovely try to take a few 

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Thank you for your reply.

Volendam is a beautiful ship, looking forward to seeing any interior photos, as it's a few years since we sailed on her.

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Thanks for posting pictures of your journey, I am enjoying them tremendously.

 

Too bad you didn't get a tote bag.  We received a very special Alaska edition on our last two cruises to Alaska; they were beautiful.

 

We also enjoy the Tracy Arm excursion that you took.  We have done it the last two years on the Nieuw Amsterdam and will repeat it again during our June 15th itinerary aboard the Nieuw Amsterdam.  We specifically chose the NA because it had the TA excursion.

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Loving your live review and your pictures!! We're cruising in 10 days, and you're getting me so excited. I agree with you about that little catamaran cruise up the Tracy Arm. It is the best excursion ever.

 

Hey, isn't Hanger on the Wharf where the PTZtv camera is located?

 

Keep enjoying yourselves.

Edited by Cruise_More_Often

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A+ dinner view tonight from the Volendam. 

 

Cant get better weather in Juneau. 

 
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