Westerdam Cruise Review to Alaska - Inside Passage

Third Mate

7+ cruises


Helpful Votes

4 out of 5

North to Alaska for the First Time

Sail Date: June 08, 2013

Reviewed: 3 years ago

Traveled As: Couple

Room Type: Suite

Because my husband and I live 15 minutes from Port Canaveral, Florida, we frequently cruise the Caribbean but had never been to Alaska before. Holland America is one of our favorite cruise lines because of their service, consistency, and value. When we finally decided to take an Alaskan cruise, we found the Inside Passage 7-day from Seattle the best value offered at the time, and we were not disappointed.
We spent a couple of nights in Seattle first and were charmed by the friendliness, cleanliness, history, and beauty of that city. The itinerary of the cruise showed us a sampling of the Alaskan wilderness and lifestyle, and we are already planning a longer, more extensive cruise and land package for next summer.

Cruise Photos

Ship Quality
Food and Dining
The only negative concerns the service and presentation at the Lido Grill on deck 9. The serving staff seemed short-tempered and a bit sullen both with each other and with passengers who requested something not readily available; two outstanding examples: a) every morning I asked for crisply cooked bacon at breakfast and the server dumped a blob of partially cooked, greasy bacon on my plate. Each time I told the server I did not want it that way so either remove it or serve me some crisp bacon. Sometimes the bacon was scrapped off and back into the warmer, and other times the server turned around, dropped it into a deep-fryer behind her, and let it cook for about 30 seconds until it was done. Most days other passengers would comment that they weren't aware the servers could cook the bacon more so had not been ordering any at all. Why isn't the bacon cooked before it's displayed on the serving line? b) SILVERWARE! Where is it? For both breakfast and lunches on the Lido, the four of us had to search and beg for silverware. If we asked for it at the line, we were told it was already on the tables; if we asked at the table, we were told it was on the line. Often our food was cold before we could secure silverware. My group of 4 even ate breakfast one morning with the large spoons offered at the yogurt station.
Cabin / Stateroom
large, all the amenities expected
Service and Staff
housekeeping, shops, etc all good; Lido deck staff usually seemed confused and aloof.
Love the trivia!
Destinations and Excursions
wide selection based on activity level and cost.
Seattle, Washington
So much to see and do in Seattle; if you have never been here before, I suggest you book a couple of days prior to the cruise to see the Chihuly Glass Museum, the downtown area next to Puget Sound with Pike's Market and the original Starbucks location, the Space Needle, and other sites. Don't rent a car--public transit in Seattle is primo!
Juneau, Alaska
lots of excursions offered here, but don't waste money on whale watching or eagle-hunting because you will see that for free as you slide into Glacier Bay or Sitka
Cruise Glacier Bay
best day of the cruise! If you can get a portside balcony, you don't even need to leave the room!
Sitka, Alaska
Excellent! no excursions needed; all local eateries, artisans, shops, etc. NO Diamonds International or usual cruise port stores. Just wander leisurely around and chat with the local shopkeepers, smell the flowers (Literally, smell the flowers). Best port of the 3 offered on this cruise.
Ketchikan, Alaska Just the opposite of Sitka; right off our balcony was a Diamonds International. Don't waste money on the totem village. Everything you see from the tour can be seen from the city bus as you drive by.
Victoria, British Columbia
Beautiful, polite, interesting, scenic. Wish we had longer than 3 hours here.


The Crow's Nest is the "go-to" place for those who enjoy a quieter, less crowded drink or snack with friends. Plenty of comfortable seating in a variety of arrangements, free
hors d'oeuvres, a coffee bar, daily newsletters, open jigsaw puzzles, a computer station, and friendly bar staff. Great place for whale-watching and trivia!!!

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