Holland America’s Rotterdam Returns to World Cruising in 2009

Holland America Line began its tradition of world cruising in 1958, and more than half a century later the line continues to offer the annual once-in-a-lifetime journeys. Celebrating the line’s annual tour around the globe, ms Rotterdam returns to world cruising in 2009 with a 114/117-day Grand World Voyage departing Jan. 19, 2009, from Los Angeles. The voyage is highlighted in new 2009 Grand World Voyage brochure produced by the premium cruise line. Hot off the press, the catalogue is filled with stunning images, itinerary details and in-depth information about ports of call.

The 1,316-passenger ship — which was built expressly for world cruising — sails a westbound route through the Pacific Ocean to the Hawaiian Islands, on to the South Pacific, Australia, Asia and Africa before making calls in the Caribbean en route back to Fort Lauderdale and New York. Calling at 39 ports in 27 countries across five continents, Rotterdam will cover more than 35,100 nautical miles while sailing on 15 different oceans, seas, bays, channels and straits.

Guests can choose to return to Fort Lauderdale May 13 or disembark at New York three days later on May 16, making the total voyage 117 days. Hundreds of optional shore excursions and an array of overland tours add color to this epic voyage, and several cruise segments ranging from 22 to 69 days are available for those wanting a shorter journey.

In addition to favorite cities, Rotterdam visits lesser-known ports offering guests unparalleled access to some of the most exotic destinations in the world. The itinerary features maiden calls at Kemaman, Malaysia — known as Malaysia’s silk capital — and Maputo, Mozambique, the most exotic port of call during the voyage and once the “Cannes of Africa.” Iles des Pins, New Caledonia, not previously visited on a Grand world voyage, adds to the port repertoire.

The itinerary also gives guests extra time to explore several ports of call with overnights in Sydney, Australia; Hong Kong and Shanghai, China; Mumbai, India; Mombasa, Kenya, and Cape Town, South Africa. A highlight of the cruise will include a Midnight Golden Line Crossing when Rotterdam crosses both the Equator and International Date Line simultaneously.

2009 Grand World Voyage reservations can now be booked
Reservations are now available for Holland America Line’s 2009 Grand World Voyage. Early-booking bonus amenities for full-cruise guests include airfare, prepaid hotel service charges, shipboard credit, luggage delivery service and limousine transfers when booking select stateroom categories; amenities vary by category and booking date.

The Grand World Voyage is available to book for the full cruise or in segments as short as 22 days. Cruise fares are per person, double occupancy and rates start at $21,499 for the 114-day and $21,999 for the 117-day Grand World Voyage departing Jan. 19, 2009. Fares for the 22-day Sydney to Hong Kong segment departing Feb. 11 begin at just $4,449.

The Holland America Line premium cruise experience
At the heart of every Holland America Line cruise is a warm and award-winning style of service that is never in the way and never out of reach. Sophisticated and savory menus enhance every culinary experience, with options to suit every taste. Whether it’s a five-course meal in the Main Dining Room, an intimate table at the elegant Pinnacle Grill or fare while relaxing poolside, the crew of Holland America Line know how to orchestrate a truly memorable dining affair.

Culinary staff and guest chefs will lead cooking classes and demonstrations in the onboard Culinary Arts Center presented by Food & Wine magazine, and, as part of the Explorations Speaker Series, special guest lecturers will sail on segments of the Grand World Voyage to offer unique and enriching perspectives on regional art, history and culture. The Explorations Café — powered by the New York Times — enables guests to stay connected to loved ones. To rest up for the next day, guests are assured a good night’s sleep with the Mariner’s Dream stateroom amenities, including luxurious beds and linens.

When in port, guests can choose from a multitude of diverse shore excursions including the exclusive Medallion Collection featuring Overland Adventures; Signature Collection private-car touring; visits to natural, architectural and technical masterpieces from the Wonders of the World Collection; and rare and unusual experiences with the Encore Collection excursions.

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