One of the most popular Alaska cruise lines in the industry today is Holland America Line. Holland America Line (HAL) Alaska cruises are among some of the top Alaska cruises on the market today. A Holland America cruise to Alaska offers several different types of Alaska cruises ranging from standard Alaska cruises to Alaskan explorer cruises.
Before we discuss the types of cruises and schedules, here are some interesting facts about Holland America Line. Established in 1873, Holland America Cruise Lines was founded as the Netherlands-America Steamship Company (NASM) — a shipping and Passenger line. Because it was headquartered in Rotterdam and provided service to the Americas, NASM became known as Holland America Line (HAL).
Carrying more than 700,000 cruise passengers around the world each year, Holland America Line is a recognized leader in the luxury cruise industry. The line has been a heavy hitter in the premium cruise line industry for more than 130 years and it offers nearly 500 cruises from more than 25 homeports. Holland America Cruise Lines has the means to offer itineraries ranging from two to a whopping 108 days. Cruises cover all seven continents, including new Australia/New Zealand and Asia sailings, a world cruise, and popular sailings to several ports in the Caribbean, Alaska, Mexico, and Europe.
The full list of HAL cruise destinations includes: Alaska, Africa, Asia, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, New England, the Caribbean, Europe, Hawaii, the Pacific Northwest, the Panama Canal, and South America. And, winter sailings to the Caribbean are just around the corner as Holland’s 1,918-passenger ms Noordam (introduced in early 2006) will offer Caribbean sailings from its new homeport New York City.
Including the ms Noordaam, Holland America features a five-star fleet of 14 stunning ships ranging from the small and intimate to the large and luxurious. Holland America Line’s famous fleet includes: ms Amsterdam, ms Eurodam (to be delivered in summer 2008), ms Maasdam, ms Oosterdam, ms Prinsendam, ms Rotterdam, ms Ryndam, ms Statendam, ms Veendam, ms Volendam, ms Westerdam, ms Zaandam, and ms Zuiderdam.
Accommodations aboard all Holland America cruise ships are elegant, spacious, and unbelievably comfortable. Several types of accommodations are available including: Penthouse Verandah Suites, Deluxe Verandah Suites, Superior Verandah Suites, Verandah Staterooms, Large Outside Staterooms, Large Inside Staterooms, and Large Standard Staterooms.
Holland America Line’s schedule for Alaska cruises varies from year to year. The Alaska cruise season typically lasts from May through September with the exception of special expedition cruises. Cruises depart from Vancouver, Canada (the most popular departure port), Seattle, Washington, Seward (Anchorage) Alaska, and San Diego, California. Holland America Line offers 7-day, 10-day, 11-day, 12-day, and 14-day cruises ranging in price from $800 or so, depending on room type/view and length of cruise, up to $4,000 or more.
Holland America Line Alaskan cruises typically depart at 4 p.m. and return on the last day at 7 a.m. Standard Alaska cruises typically depart on a Friday, Saturday, Sunday or Wednesday. The departure day is up to you.
Holland America Cruise Lines major Alaska cruise itineraries include:
*7-day cruises between Vancouver and Seward, featuring Glacier
*7-day roundtrip Seattle tour route featuring Glacier Bay or Hubbard Glacier
*7-day roundtrip Vancouver cruises featuring Glacier Bay and the Sawyer Glaciers or Tracy Arm
Holland America Line Alaska ports of call include Juneau, Skagway, Ketchikan, Sitka, Haines and Icy Strait. Excursions include: hiking, flightseeing, whale watching, glacier trekking, guided city tours, dog sledding, and more.
Holland America Line Alaska cruises also offer so many park tours, you’ll lose count! There are roughly 18 tours including: “Double Denali,” which is an additional day at Denali National Park including the Tundra Wilderness Tour to view Mt. McKinley and wildlife in Denali National Park; Kluane National Park in the Yukon, which is a World Heritage Site and home of five of the seven tallest mountains in North America; Kenai Fjords National Park; Arctic National Park and Prudhoe Bay, and visits to Tombstone Territorial Park.
For more information about current Holland America Line Alaska cruises and schedules, visit the official Holland America Line website at www.hollandamerica.com.