Originally Posted by zoopnuts
I am thinking of taking the 27 day cruise on Statendam which goes from
ft lauderdale to san diego, crossing the panama canal. Any comments
on ship or ports of call? Thanks for your advice.
Can't comment on the ports of call, but I can say you will love the Statendam. I just spent 35 days onboard going to Hawaii and the South Pacific, and all I can say is that the ship was amazing. It's truly elegant with a crew that makes it such. I honestly can't say nothing negative about the ship or its crew, as my every wish (well, almost every wish ... they still made me disembark at the end) was not only granted, but often anticipated.
The ship has plenty of facilities for an enjoyable cruise ... a wonderful library (Explorations Cafe), lots of nice bars and lounges, two pools, and a card/game room. They do run the traditional activities such as daily trivia, "Dam Dollars" events, Explorations Speaker Series, etc.
But the nice thing about sailing the Statendam is the ambience onboard ... something that is particularly important on long cruises. There really is no need to do things. The ship invites you to just relax and wile away the hours. Nothing I enjoyed more than the prospect of a full day at sea with nothing in particular to do. I would take my Kindle up to the Navigation Deck, relax with a cigarette and perhaps a beverage, and just read for hours. Or, even better ... go to the Explorations Cafe and relax with a good book or magazine for hours ... or settle into one of those comfy chairs with the music listening stations and put on a pair of headphones. You could wind up waking up several hours later ... so be warned.
I also found the staff and crew on the Statendam to be one of the best of all of the HAL ships I've been on. Service is top notch.
As for the food, of course that's very subjective, but I found every meal I took onboard to be enjoyable ... but then, to be fair, I have to say that I don't cruise for the food ... so I am pretty easy to please.
I don't think you can go wrong with this itinerary or this ship.
Let me know if you have any specific questions and I'll try to answer them.
Blue skies ...