Holland America Line’s Holiday Cruises are designed to immerse guests in the joys of the season with a relaxing, entertaining and stress-free vacation. In December 2019, travelers looking to get away for the holidays will have a choice of more than 20 cruises in late December, as well as 17 Collectors’ Voyages that combine non-repeating, back-to-back itineraries up to 34 days.
The diverse cruises include the Caribbean; Panama Canal; Mexican Riviera; Australia and the South Pacific; South America and Antarctica; and Asia. Depending on the itinerary, guests can unwind on beautiful beaches, explore ancient civilizations, gaze at glaciers or cuddle with a koala.
Unwrap the Treasures of the Caribbean
Travelers looking to escape the winter chill can set sail for the Caribbean on 12 Holiday Cruises ranging from seven to 16 days. Eurodam, Koningsdam, Nieuw Amsterdam, Nieuw Statendam, Veendam, Volendam and Zuiderdam feature unique itineraries highlighting the eastern, western, southern and tropical regions. All Caribbean sailings conveniently sail roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and most include a call at Holland America Line’s award-winning private island, Half Moon Cay, known for its pristine beaches, abundance of water sports, adventurous family activities and relaxing private cabanas and villas.
Witness an Engineering Marvel
Those in search of a unique holiday can witness the world’s greatest manmade marvel on two 17-day cruises to the Panama Canal aboard Amsterdam and Rotterdam. On Dec. 18, Amsterdam departs San Diego and visit ports in Mexico, Guatemala, Nicaragua and Costa Rica before traversing the famed locks of the Canal en route to Fort Lauderdale where the cruise ends. Alternatively, Rotterdam’s voyage departs Dec. 21 from Fort Lauderdale, and visits ports in the Bahamas, Curaçao and Aruba before transiting the Canal. The ship continues on to Central America and Mexico before ending at San Diego.
Soak Up the Sol in Mexico
Cruisers seeking some fun in the sun this holiday season can set sail for the Mexican Riviera on two seven-day cruises aboard Oosterdam. On Dec. 21 and Dec. 28, the ship sails roundtrip from San Diego, California, and calls at the colorful ports of Cabo San Lucas, Mazatlan and Puerto Vallarta, allowing plenty of time for taking in the Mexican culture, indulging in delicious local cuisine and relaxing on the beach.
Celebrate Down Under in Style
Travelers interested in spending the holidays Down Under will have two 14-day cruises to choose from aboard Noordam and Maasdam. On Dec. 21, Noordam departs Auckland, New Zealand, visiting five ports throughout the country. Guests will then enjoy scenic cruising through Fiordland National Park and calls at the Australian ports of Eden, Port Arthur and Hobart. The ship overnights at Sydney before disembarkation.
Those looking to focus on Australia can opt for Maasdam’s Dec. 23 cruise. Sailing roundtrip from Sydney, the ship goes on an in-depth exploration of the continent calling at Eden, Melbourne, Port Arthur, Adelaide, Penneshaw, Portland and Phillip Island, as well as Burnie, Tasmania.
Uncover the Mysteries of the Far East
Dreaming of an exotic holiday? Embark on a 14-day Far East Discovery cruise to Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand. On Dec. 21, Westerdam departs Hong Kong, China, and heads for ports in Vietnam, including an overnight stay at Da Nang (Hue). The ship also will visit Sihanoukville, Cambodia, with time for an overland to the famed Angkor Wat, as well as Laem Chabang (Bangkok) for an overnight and Nathon (Koh Samui), Thailand, before disembarking at Singapore.
Adventures in a Winter Wonderland
Cruisers who want to spend the holidays surrounded by snow can embark Zaandam’s 22-day South America and Antarctica Holiday cruise departing Buenos Aires, Argentina, Dec. 18. During the voyage, the ship will visit Uruguay, Argentina and the Falkland Islands before heading further south where it will spend several days exploring the dramatic landscapes of Antarctica, making it a true winter wonderland experience. Additional scenic cruising includes the Straight of Magellan, the Chilean Fjords and Drake Passage.
Feel the Holiday Cheer On Board
The holidays are a memorable time on board. Guests can sing carols by the piano, attend a religious service, take part in a yule log parade, watch holiday movies and enjoy an international choir, all while waiting for Santa.
Culinary traditions are featured on the menus as well, with perfectly prepared filet mignon, as well as favorites like turkey, goose, stuffing, cranberry sauce and a holiday-themed Royal Dutch High Tea. New Year’s Eve on board includes a gala on the ship’s lido deck, complete with party favors and a champagne toast when the clock strikes midnight.