Holland Alaskan Cruise Tour

Noordam Cruise Review to Alaska - Gulf of Alaska

Cruises: 4-6 cruises
Review: 1
Helpful Votes: 37

Overall rating:

4.7 out of 5
Noordam

7 Night Glacier Discovery Southbound (Seward To Vancouver)

Sail date: June 02, 2019

Ship: Noordam

Cabin type: Suite

Cabin number: 6088

Traveled as: Family (older children)

Reviewed: 2 years ago

Review summary

This is our second Alaskan cruise tour, first time on Holland and first time with our teen daughters. Alaska is amazing and a must do experience. We were pleased with Holland America. The Noordam is a smaller ship than we have cruised on in the past and made for a good experience. So many great excursions to experience and sights to see. We stayed in a suite for the size with added value of a separate lounge (so so), special concierge (good), easier embarkation (great), and complimentary laundry (amazing). Norwegians haven is a far better suite experience but I would do this again if sailing Holland. Alaska is always perceived as an older person cruise. Don’t wait. There are so many great experiences and you will have a blast.

Embarkation

5 out of 5
As a suite passenger I was able to use a special line to checkin skipping a larger line. Having cruised before, even the normal line wasn’t that long.

Ship experiences

Food and Dining

4 out of 5
Holland has some quality foods. The kids sometimes had challenges choosing but we always found something the would like. Pinnacle grill was by far our favorite for both breakfast and dinner. We tend to avoid the buffet as food their is always a step down in quality.

Vista Dining Room

5 out of 5

We had the late seating, assigned window seats. Never really crowded. Service was really fabulous. Meals were far better than the main dining rooms in the other cruise lines I’ve been on before.

Pinnacle Grill

5 out of 5

Our favorite restaurant on the ship. Eat breakfast here. Best meals of our day, always a window seat with great ocean views. Dinners were awesome from the starters to the meals. Yes a little pricey but great experience one or two nights on the ship. Steaks were good, salmon very good.

Lido Market

3 out of 5

Overall it was a good restaurant. But it is buffet food and I think always a step down in quality. They serve most food versus letting you pick it. This helps for sanitary reasons. Often times crowded and hard to find a seat.

Onboard Activities

5 out of 5
Since this was an Alaskan cruise, there were not a lot of kids. The pools were always pretty empty making it a great experience for families.

Photo Gallery

5 out of 5

The photographers do a great job. If you have kids this is a great way to get some special pictures for a lifetime. A few hundred dollars and you can take home a lot of pictures. No pushy sales.

Neptune Lounge

3 out of 5

Nice small area to go hide out for a while. No ocean or outside views. Snacks and drinks just eh. Concierge was good to have here versus waiting in long lines below. Hours of service weren’t what I wanted. Not open early and late when I really wanted to use the lounge and services.

Entertainment

5 out of 5
We stopped into a comedy show and the jokes seemed to be tailored to an older crowd so not for us. Great music, dancing and fun in the bb king long. Plenty of beer, wine, and cocktail tasting events that were more fun than I expected.

Children's Programs

They had a loft area and events scheduled for teens. We didn’t use them. In fact I talked to one of the counselors and she said they cancelled a lot due to no participation. Likely because this was an Alaskan cruise with fewer kids.

The Loft

2 out of 5

Kids tried to use a couple times. Events often cancelled due to lack of participation without notice.

Service and Staff

5 out of 5
What you would expect. Room always serviced well. Waiters, bartenders, wine stewards quickly caught onto names and treated you right. Good spirits, friendly and eager to help. As a suite passenger we had access to the Neptune lounge. Just ok there. The concierge was great. Snacks and drinks just eh. The hours also weren’t very accommodating. Every time I really wanted to go there, they were closed.

Ship Quality

3 out of 5
Overall, everything clean and livable. Don’t remember having any “oh yuck” scenarios. The ship is easy to move around and learn the layout. Elevators were never crowded which surprised me. All that said, the ships interior could use some updating. Still using dvds in the room TVs that you check out at guest services.

Cabin / Stateroom

5 out of 5
Perfect for family of 4, 2 adults and two younger teens. Bathroom had a tub with shower and a separate shower. Don’t want to use at the same time because only glass separates them. Separate area with mirrors in the closet area but no sink there. Good views from the balcony. Bed was large and comfortable. The sofa bed was, well, a sofa bed and not the best.

Ship tip

Small outside hidden area in front of gym that was great for viewing glacier bay. Almost empty. Don’t tell anyone. Use the side elevators, faster, less crowded and good ocean view.

Ports of call

Seward (Anchorage), Alaska

4 out of 5
Good to see the city and experience their restaurants. Not really enough time here though to do too much. Plenty of souvenir stores.

Cruise Glacier Bay

5 out of 5
Just amazing. Start a little slow until you get to the final glacier and wow is it amazing. It may be cold, it may be rainy, but get out there and watch it. The ice falling off is breathtaking.

Haines, Alaska

5 out of 5
Okay so Haines isn’t that spectacular. Small little town that larger ships can’t get into. But it helps you really feel what Alaska is about. The ATV tour here was horrible. Not an ATV experience. They tailored it for the old I think. Rather boring. Spending time on the shore with my daughter was a blast. Lots of ocean artifacts to explore. Just watch how fast the tide rises though. The highlight of Haines was a trip out to Steve Kroschel’s wildlife park. Don’t know how to describe it but it won’t be what you expect. If you like animals up close you must do this excursion. Best valued excursion. Of our trip. Keep an open mind and have yourself some fun. “Get the picture!”

Juneau, Alaska

5 out of 5
Juneau is a beautiful little town. We did a helicopter ride and dog sledding on a glacier. Expensive. I am telling you this is breath taking. The sledding is not fast or exhilarating but omg what an overall experience. 150 dogs, 10 crew, a few of us cruisers and the vastness of a glacier. Must do in your lifetime.

Ketchikan, Alaska

5 out of 5
Another quaint little town. The port is all souvenir shops and built for us cruisers. Get past that to see the real Ketchikan. We went salmon fishing here. Really too early in the season so we only caught about 8 kings and couldn’t keep them. Great time out on the water, calm and sunny day, whales, sea lions and the views.

Cruise Inside Passage, Alaska

5 out of 5
Just beautiful - keep an eye out for those whales.

Vancouver (Canada Place), British Columbia Did not visit port

Just enough time here to fly home.

Disembarkation

5 out of 5
Used the direct to bus disembarkation. Fill out your customs card early. Put your bags out early the night before. Wait in the lounge for your group to get called. Easy walk off the ship. A quick scan of your card and a short walk to the bus. Your luggage is waiting in a small section of the airport and easy to find and you are right at the airline Check-In.
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