Wonderful , relaxing cruise

Zuiderdam Cruise Review to Caribbean

Cruises: 2-3 cruises
Review: 1
Helpful Votes: 25

Overall rating:

4.7 out of 5

10 Night Panama Canal Sunfarer (Ft. Lauderdale Roundtrip)

Sail date: February 18, 2018

Ship: Zuiderdam

Cabin type: Balcony

Cabin number: 5148

Traveled as: Couple

Reviewed: 3 years ago

Review summary

We had a wonderful time . The food , service, and entertainment were wonderful . Looking forward to cruising on Holland America again. Next time we will know what questions to ask when booking excursions.


5 out of 5
This was our first cruise on a large ship, so we don’t have anything to compare the process to. We thought they were very organized , we were checked in quickly , no stress

Ship experiences

Food and Dining

5 out of 5
We ate dinner in the main dining rm. the food was always very good and the service excellent. We dined at the pinnacle grill one evening. The steaks were outstanding . I had the lobster bisque (amazing) 5star service. We ate breakfast and lunch in the Lido grill . Very impressed with the quality and variety .

Onboard Activities

5 out of 5
We went to a couple of the America’s test kitchen classes. Very enjoyable and we learned a few things


5 out of 5
The main stage shows were a lot of fun . Very talented singers and dancers. The B.B. king lounge music was great . A different set every night.

Service and Staff

5 out of 5
The service was very good. Our steward made sure we had what we needed , very attentive . The waiters were wonderful, attention to detail .

Ship Quality

5 out of 5
It is an older ship , but well maintained . We enjoyed the layout. Lots of quiet places to read and relax . The pool areas became very crowded and difficult to find a chair after 10am. We preferred to sit in one of the lovely chairs on the promenade.

Cabin / Stateroom

5 out of 5
Loved having a bathtub. I was impressed with ample closet space . The bed was comfortable with nice sitting area

Ship tip

No need to purchase an alcohol pkg . Every bar has a happy hour and the alcohol is reasonably priced.

Ports of call

Ft. Lauderdale (Port Everglades), Florida Did not visit port

Stayed with friends

Half Moon Cay, Bahamas (Private Island)

5 out of 5
Beautiful beach with lots of room . The beach bbq was delicious and we were impressed how well it was set up to accommodate so many passengers.

Oranjestad, Aruba

5 out of 5
Lovely port. We shared a cab and went to palm beach.there is a charge for the chairs and umbrellas , but price is negotiable . We did not book an excursion due to getting there at 2pm and leaving at 8.

Willemstad, Curacao

5 out of 5
We are coming back to stay a few days. Gorgeous island . We booked the distillery and beach tour. I would have liked to stay at the beach longer, unfortunately we had to be back on ship 330pm

Enter Panama Canal At Cristobal

5 out of 5
Going through was treated as an event. The narrator gave detailed information of our voyage through the locks . All decks had juice coffee , danish for guest. Even though we had a balcony, we went to crows nest to get full experience.

Exit Panama Canal At Cristobal

3 out of 5
We booked the canal experience excursion . Wanted to go through all locks to the pacific side. In the end we were happy that we did this but the excursion was a fiasco . We were told the night before that we would be running late. What they did not tell us that we would be taking a very long bus ride with a stop at a gas station to buy time ( the ferry we were to board was running late ) we finally boarded the ferry but had to wait for a pilot then a new time slot. Barely enough food to feed everyone , and beverage selection was terrible . Beer , water, grape and orange soda . It was an amazing experience passing through the locks on a small ferry. Really get the feel of the water moving up and down . We were disappointed that it was dark when passing through the last lock. The ship waited ( we booked through ship, and there were 200 + passengers ) the buses got us back to the ship but almost had 2 accidents trying to get us there .

Colon, Panama Did not visit port

Got back late from our excursion

Puerto Limon, Costa Rica

1 out of 5
The port is dangerous. They say they do not have a drug problem in this city, but evident they do.unless you have booked an excursion , do not get off ship. We booked the Caribbean train and canal tour. The description of the train portion stated that train rides through lush forest stopping frequently to link at animal living around tracks . The train does not stop and due to major construction the animals are long gone. However , our guide was charming and very knowledgeable .


5 out of 5
Very well done. We knew the day before what time and with what group we were to disembark. Easy to find our luggage and go through customs. If you are global entry please make sure that you have your global entry card .

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