Sail Date: March 27, 2011 Ship: Ryndam Cabin Type: Oceanview Traveled As: Family (older children) Reviewed: 6 years ago
I enjoyed the smaller size of the Ryndam and the intimacy it offered. Our favorite spaces were the Explorations Cafe, the Ocean Bar and the Lido pool deck area. The food was excellent in all venues (we did not really eat in the Lido very often - one breakfast and one lunch, I think) - Pinnacle Grill was delicious as were all our meals in the dining room. The way Holland America staff remember your name after only hearing it once is just so impressive! We have not experienced this with any other line. And little touches like a shaded tent, lemonade and a red carpet to welcome you back to the ship after a hot day of excursions are a welcome difference from other lines we saw in port as well. We also love that Holland America offers consistently talented jazz combos in the Ocean Bar areas of its ships for real dancing (not disco dancing). Our teens enjoyed their counselor very much, and enjoyed all the food and activities as well. Holland America offers a high quality product at an affordable price. Great value!
Food and Dining
5 out of 5
Delicious! We chose any time dining and never had to wait for a table. We usually ate between 7pm and 730pm. Room service breakfasts were always hot and accurate, and prompt.
5 out of 5
We thought the entertainment options were great, becuase they included dance lessons and opportunities for dancing, which we really enjoy on a cruise. We don't want hairy chest contests or belly flop contests, and so we don't cruise on lines that have those things. We enjoyed the 5k walk on deck for breast cancer, and some beer and wine tasting classes as well. We wish we had had the time to enjoy other classes such as cooking.
5 out of 5
Our two teens had a great time with the teen counselor and the other teens who chose to participate in the programs. We got the impression from them that the activities appeal to a "nerdier" set of kids, who are smart and like to learn, and enjoy activities that make you use your head a little bit. We liked hearing about their activities from them, and this gave us time to do things by ourselves (such as the above-mentioned dancing).
Service and Staff
5 out of 5
I am continuously amazed and impressed by the Holland America staff's ability to remember a name after hearing it or seeing it written only once! It's truly amazing. After ringing up our drinks the first evening with our stateroom card, we were greeted by name the next evening by our cocktail waitress! Our stewards were very friendly and helpful. They all have that mysterious ability to materialize in the hallway when you need something, and to not be intrusive when you want privacy. Dining staff was also very solicitous and friendly in all areas of the ship.
5 out of 5
The ship was beautiful. Decor understatedly elegant. Seating comfortable in whatever area we were in. They were constantly painting, replacing worn carpeting and just keeping it looking in top shape.
Cabin / Stateroom
5 out of 5
I loved the decor and the new bathrooms. Spacious (for a ship's cabin bathroom) and clean. This was my first time in an ocean view room and I didn't really like the configuration of the room. I will probably go back to a veranda for our next cruise. Also, I chose our stateroom rather poorly, I believe, as it was directly under the promenade where deck chairs were being positioned early in the AM and other work was being done, and it woke me up frequently. But I chose that cabin myself, so I can't blame Holland America for this!
We chose to just walk around town on our own to the "mile zero" marker and have our photo taken. It was a very hot day and bit of a hike, but we enjoyed it nonetheless. We enjoyed some conch fritters at Sloppy Joe's before heading back to the ship.
We enjoyed ziplining and cave tubing with cave-tubing.bz. The ziplining operation was very efficient and modern, and the cave tubing was relaxing, fun and interesting. The free lunch after was also very good (and the rum punch!)
Don't Miss: I highly recommend cave-tubing.bz for your excursion in this port!
We chose the ship's ship wreck and snorkle tour - the reef was beautiful but the shipwreck was about 50 feet down so you couldn't really see it. The resort was nice but the bathrooms left quite a bit to be desired (only one of two stalls working!). Our kids enjoyed shopping in the Mahogany Bay port.
We really enjoyed our tour with Native Choice to the Chacchoben ruins - don't miss the tour that includes lunch at a Mayan family's home! The tortillas we learned to make ourselves were the most delicious I have ever tasted! The rest of the lunch was superb as well. Very clean and sanitary - no concerns there.
Don't Miss: Native Choice Mayan experience tour!
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