Holland America Line will sail the 2,650-passenger Koningsdam to Alaska in 2020, which will see seven Holland America ships to Alaska between April and September, including the Eurodam, Maasdam, Noordam, Oosterdam, Volendam and Westerdam.
Cruises sail roundtrip from Seattle or Vancouver, or one-way between Seward and Vancouver. Holland America said it has been taking guests to Alaska for more than 70 years – longer than it’s been a state.
“Holland America Line pioneered cruising in Alaska and that history and expertise means our guests have the most immersive and memorable encounters with the glaciers, wildlife and mountains that they’ve come to see,” commented Orlando Ashford, cruise line president. “Our 2020 season features a wide selection of options on a variety of ships, all of which are mid-sized to allow more viewing areas and uncrowded deck spaces. And because our Land+Sea guests travel on our own railcars and motorcoaches and stay in our exclusive hotels, they enjoy a seamless journey, consistent service and a tour schedule that maximizes time in each destination.”
The company keeps 3,500 staff in Alaska each year, many are local Alaskans and all are employees of the company, not third parties. The line also owns its own motorcoaches, luxury-domed McKinley Explorer railcars and hotels, including the 60-acre McKinley Chalet Resort bordering Denali National Park.
“In a sea of large, overcrowded ships, our ships stand out and are mid-sized by design, so travelers have plenty of room at the rail to take in the sights,” added Ashford. “Wraparound decks and an abundance of staterooms with verandahs bring our guests closer to Alaska’s natural wonders.”
Holland America’s 2020 program includes the Koningsdam sailing her maiden season in Alaska with seven-day Inside Passage itineraries roundtrip from Vancouver. It is the only cruise line with seven-day roundtrip itineraries from Vancouver that include Glacier Bay National Park.
Fourteen-day Great Alaska Explorer EXC In-Depth Voyages aboard Maasdam offer a new way to explore Alaska, according to a company statement. The itineraries, sailing roundtrip Vancouver, call at seldom-visited ports such as Homer and Valdez and offer interactive workshops, lectures and theme-based shore excursions in the areas of photography, nature, food, history and active tours. Zodiacs can be boarded directly from the ship for a closer view of glaciers, wildlife and scenery, guided by an expert.