Holland America: 44 Europe Itineraries in 2012

Holland America Line’s 2012 summer Europe sailing program offers extensive choices, featuring 44 unique itineraries including four new notable itineraries and five maiden ports of call. Ranging from seven to 35 days, these cruises offer travelers an opportunity to explore a variety of destinations, from the most sophisticated capitals of the world to hidden gems of the region.

Holland America Line will deploy seven of its 15 ships — ms Eurodam, ms Maasdam, ms Nieuw Amsterdam, ms Noordam,  ms Prinsendam, ms Rotterdam and ms Ryndam — to cruise throughout Europe on 103 departures that span from the northern tip of Norway to the Baltic and Black Sea and the Mediterranean.

“Europe continues to be one of the most popular sailing regions in the world due to its history, cultural diversity, scenic beauty, charm and ease of access,” said Richard Meadows, CTC, executive vice president, marketing, sales and guest programs. “Our new itineraries and port calls are sure to intrigue both new and loyal Holland America Line guests. We take great pride in creating unique experiences on board and ashore, and a cruise offers tremendous value in this region given the currency fluctuations.”

The 2012 Europe cruise season reflects Holland America Line’s focus on destination diversity, timeless appeal and quality, featuring maiden calls at Durress, Albania; Fowey, England; and Eidfjord, Kirkenes and Ulvik, Norway, as well as overnight stays to 17 popular cities such as Barcelona, Spain; Hamburg, Germany; Istanbul, Turkey; St. Petersburg, Russia; Stockholm, Sweden; Dublin, Ireland; Mgarr (Victoria), Malta; Reykjavik, Iceland; Amsterdam, Netherlands; Venice, Italy, and Bordeaux, France.

For true explorers seeking an in-depth experience at an exceptional value, extended Collectors’ Voyages ranging from 14 to 35 days offer the ultimate European cruise experience. These artfully crafted, longer cruises combine back-to-back itineraries, enabling guests to visit more ports and spend extra time exploring centuries of art, history and culture.  Per-person cruise fares begin at $2,149, double occupancy.

Notable New Itineraries

20-Day Portugal, Spain & Canary Islands

Departing April 16 on Ryndam, guests will sail from Rotterdam, Netherlands and end in Dover (London), England; visiting tropical ports in the Canary Islands where they can enjoy the warm climate and explore natural attractions such as Mount Teide, the third-largest volcano in the world. The itinerary also includes calls in Spain, Portugal and Morocco. Guests also have the option of sailing for 19-days and making their trip either roundtrip Rotterdam, Netherlands on April 16, or roundtrip Dover, England on April 17. Per-person cruise fares begin at $2,999, double occupancy.

17-Day Spanish Rhapsody

Those seeking an itinerary with a Spanish flavor can embark on a 17-day sailing aboard the Rotterdam roundtrip from Rotterdam. The cruise departs May 2 and calls at Lisbon, Portugal; Cartagena, Valencia, Barcelona, Ibiza, Almeria and Cadiz (Seville), Spain; Gibraltar, and Civitavecchia (Rome), Italy. Cruise fares begin at $2,599 per person, double occupancy.

7-Day Norwegian Fjords (Southern & Northern)

Cruisers looking to explore the glaciers and fjords of northern Europe can choose from two seven-day itineraries that sail roundtrip from Dover, Rotterdam or Amsterdam aboard Ryndam, Rotterdam or Eurodam. These shorter adventures offer a spectacular scenic tour and call at popular Norwegian ports from May through September. The 7-Day Southern Norwegian Fjords visits ports such as Oslo, Kristiansand and Stavanger. The 7-Day Northern Norwegian Fjords visits ports such as Bergen, Alesund and Geiranger. Per-person cruise fares begin at $1,199, double occupancy.

14-Day Venetian Empire

Also new for 2012 is the 14-day “Venetian Empire” voyage aboard the Prinsendam. Guests depart Oct. 17 and sail roundtrip Civitavecchia to some of the most beautiful and untouched ports in the region. In addition to cruising past the still-active Stromboli volcano, the ship will call at Dubrovnik and Split, Croatia; Ravenna, Sorrento, Venice (overnight) and Gallipoli, Italy; Valleta and Mgarr (overnight), Malta, and Sousse, Tunisia. Cruise fares begin at $2,899 per person, double occupancy.

Engaging Unique Experiences

Additional exciting Holland America Line Europe itineraries enable guests to be among the few to cross the Arctic Circle, transit Germany’s Kiel Canal or cruise the Gironde Estuary into Bordeaux. Other unusual itineraries include visiting the ancient pyramids of Giza, near Cairo, Egypt, along with the holy lands in Jerusalem and Nazareth. Those interested in taking a dip in the famous “Blue Lagoon,” Iceland’s unique geothermal seawater, can choose the Icelandic Adventure aboard Prinsendam, which includes an overnight stay at Reykjavik.

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