CruiseMates' Readers Cruise Reviews

Holland America Line Summer 2001

We are both over 60 and went on first cruise several weeks ago. We chose HAL because it was said to have a more sedate crowd with few children. Embarkation was done well (we arrived early). It turned out that this cruise of 1200 passengers had 500 children. Although they were well-behaved, that is too many for us.

We had asked for a table for 6 or 8, and the first night when the Maitre-D' saw us sitting by ourselves at a table set for 6, he asked if we wanted a table for 2. Fine, except we did not talk to anyone on the ship all week. Any older people were with their families and ate in large groups or casually in the Lido restaurant. In fact, casual was the name of the game: it seems the current young adults do not dress up or teach their kids to, either. I enjoy that aspect of cruising-the dressing for dinner, but each night I felt overdressed. Even if they did wear nicer clothes for dinner, they changed immediately afterward, instead of keeping with the ambience of the evening. Actually, there was a middle-aged man who wore a t-shirt and an open sport shirt over it on both formal nights.

The pools were filled with kids the entire day, and at night there was LOUD music and dancing contests at the main pool. This older person found it difficult to sit quietly at the pool and read, so I had to go elsewhere. All the activities and music were geared to this group of young adults and their children.

Is this atypical for HAL ??? Is it because it was summer ??? If this is HAL, I hate to think what we would find on Disney or Carnival !!!!!!!!!!

All-in-all, the cruise was very nice: I found the food preparation and taste to be excellent. So was the service.

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