Wonderful time doing a partial Canal transit

Zuiderdam Cruise Review to Caribbean

Cruises: 4-6 cruises
Reviews: 6
Helpful Votes: 91

Overall rating:

4.6 out of 5

18 Night Sunfarer & Eastern Caribbean Holiday (Ft. Lauderdale)

Sail date: December 08, 2014

Ship: Zuiderdam

Cabin type: Balcony

Traveled as: Couple

Reviewed: 4 years ago

Review summary

As it turned out we were there for the 100 anniversay of the canal, which was kind of cool. We thoroughly enjoyed the Zuiderdam and all of ports. Quite a memorable time.


4 out of 5
Embarkation was smooth and easy. Port Everglades has always been good to us.

Ship experiences

Food and Dining

5 out of 5
I've always enjoyed the food aboard HAL. We did one night at Pinnacle and it didn't disappoint.

Onboard Activities

4 out of 5


4 out of 5

Service and Staff

5 out of 5
Service from staff and cabin stewards is always exceptional. I loved how the crew went around offering coffee and Panamanian rolls as we approached the locks.

Ship Quality

5 out of 5

Cabin / Stateroom

5 out of 5
Great size. We have no complaints.

Ports of call

Ft. Lauderdale (Port Everglades), Florida

5 out of 5

Half Moon Cay, Bahamas (Private Island)

5 out of 5
My favorite place in the world!

Oranjestad, Aruba

4 out of 5
We did a DIY beach break. It was very easy as the public bus stop is righ across from where we docked. It think it cost us $2 round trip to get to the beach. The beaches are very clean and there are chairs and palapas on some of them. If you do use them, however, someone (I think from the nearest hotel/park) will collect $5 a person for their use. The water was very rough the day we went and I took a major swan dive. It scared the heck out of me!!

Willemstad, Curacao

5 out of 5
What a beautiful port! So picturesque! HAL docks in the downtown area and even passes through the "floating bridge". We enjoyed sitting on the promedade deck as we watched the bridge open and close. We hired a taxi/van driver and he took us all around the island for 3 hours--$15 each, I think. We made several stops, including one to the Curacao distillerary.

Cartagena, Colombia

4 out of 5
The ship docks in a very "industrial" port but you do get nice views of the bay. We booked an excursion to the fort and also had a city tour. It was very nice. Lots of begging, which is hard to stomach. But still, we had a wonderful time.

Enter Panama Canal At Cristobal

5 out of 5
Amazing! I recommend anyone get up early to see the approach because all the good viewing spots are taken up quickly. From our balcony we could actually touch the sides of the locks. Incredible experience.

Exit Panama Canal At Cristobal Did not visit port

We left the ship for an excursion. Rather than returning to the ship and exiting the locks, most exursions will end in Colon and the ship picks you up there.

Colon, Panama

2 out of 5
Not much to do but wait around for the ship.

Puerto Limon, Costa Rica

4 out of 5
The port itself is not much, nor is the surrounding area. We booked an excursion to do white water river rafting and it was awesome! Probably the best exursion we've done.


4 out of 5
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