farther and delve deeper with innovative and engaging approach
to cruising aboard
Maasdam in fall 2018
Seattle, Wash., Feb. 15, 2018 — This
September Holland America Line will begin an innovative approach to cruising
for travelers who are looking for thoughtful and immersive ways to see the
world. Offered on the 1,258-guest Maasdam,
new EXC In-Depth Voyages explore some of the most fascinating corners of the
globe on itineraries from 12 to 34 days, using world-renowned experts, local
scholars and customized Zodiac tours to immerse guests in the experience.
With EXC In-Depth Voyages, each journey offers guests a variety of themes and
choices to tailor their exploration: photography; science and nature; arts and
culture; food, wine and spirits; history and perspective; and active
exploration. Guests are free to focus on one area of interest or combine their
passions through onboard enrichment and captivating shore activities. Guests
can choose to do as much or as little as they like.
"We created EXC In-Depth Voyages to further enhance our guests immersion
experience in a more personalized way in the exotic destinations featured on
this series of specially designed itineraries," said Orlando Ashford, president
of Holland America Line. "The addition of Zodiac tours will allow guests to be
modern-day explorers, and Maasdam
will visit many ports that we have never been to or haven't visited in years;
EXC In-Depth Voyages are truly unique."
Notable Experts Lead
Workshops, Seminars and Learning Opportunities
From September 2018 through April 2019, EXC In-Depth Voyages expand on Holland
America Line's exciting Explorations Central (EXC) programming by creating a total experience on board and
ashore. Onboard enrichment is guided by a special resident team of subject-matter
experts — covering such topics as marine and bird life, geology, cultural
anthropology, history and more — who sail on all EXC In-Depth cruises,
complementing each adventure with informative talks and insightful discussions
of their own field experiences.
A sea day could include a lecture on Captain Cook (history and perspective),
discovering the indigenous breadfruit (food, wine and spirits), growing coral
(science and nature), DSLR Basics (photography) and a traditional tattoo design
workshop (arts and culture). Additional EXC programming on board is designed to
bring guests together with similar interests and will offer interactive
activities, destination insight from location experts and EXC Guides, and
cultural encounters to make each cruise more engaging and meaningful.
Since EXC In-Depth Voyages are designed with added emphasis on the destination
and onboard learning, evening entertainment will reflect the local culture
instead of mainstage production shows. America's Test Kitchen is being replaced
with local chefs, locally sourced ingredients and local traditions to enhance
the culinary offerings appreciated by Holland America Line guests. Junior
cruisers are welcome, but Club HAL kids' activities will not be offered on EXC
Boats Amplify Up-close Experiences
carry Zodiac inflatable boats, the type popularized by famous oceanographer
Jacques Cousteau, so guests may enjoy opportunities to intimately explore
less-accessible sites and wildlife habitats in select ports as part of the
ships EXC Tours program. A mix of onboard experts and local guides co-guide
Zodiac outings to enrich the experience for guests.
For example, guests might foray around sheltered islands to spot local birdlife
including waders, oystercatchers, nesting cormorants and other species. Or
venture up rivers to explore the history and sights of a region from a unique
vantage. Perhaps they will uncover the beauty of nature reserves on a photo
adventure that features rugged shores, blue waters, limestone cliffs and
abundant wildlife. Zodiac tours are not included in the cruise fare.
Dr. Peter Carey, Holland America Line's director of explorations, is currently
scouting locations and refining plans for this innovative new series of voyages
and Zodiac excursions. A zoologist who has traveled extensively throughout and
researched the region, Carey will draw on his journeys and vast research into
sea mammal behavior and seabird ecology to craft experiences that open up even wilder
places for guests to enjoy and remember as the ultimate field trip. Carey is
director of the Sub-Antarctic Foundation for Ecosystems Research and a
contributing lecturer at the University of Canterbury and an affiliate
professor with the Geography Program at the University of Alaska.
Other shoreside activities focus on offering memorable experiences like
photographing the colors of a Tahitian market (photography), taking a guided
walking tour of Komodo National Park in search of the Komodo dragon (active
exploration), touring the Nukubalavu Village and seeing the Fijian kava
welcoming ceremony (arts and culture), visiting famous ruins in Thailand
(history and perspective) and watching the platypus playing in billabongs in
Australia (science and nature).
Islands and Ports
Are Off-the-Beaten Track but Accessible to Intimate Maasdam
The ports on EXC In-Depth itineraries were selected to evoke curiosity and
inspire wonder. Maasdam
will visit 154 ports in 36 countries on 12 individual cruises with guests
having the opportunity to explore far-flung locales like Easter Island,
Pitcairn Island, Java, the Maldives, the Marquesas and Nuku Hiva. Twenty-eight
ports are maiden calls or have not been visited by Holland America Line ships
EXC In-Depth Voyages
Range from 12 to 239 Days
The first EXC In-Depth Voyage departs Fort Lauderdale, Florida, Sept. 10, 2018,
and sets sail for Papeete, Tahiti, via the Panama Canal. Along the way the ship
calls at ports on the west coast of South America, sails across the Pacific
Ocean to Easter Island, and visits several South Pacific islands during the
34-day voyage. Maasdam
then spends October and part of November exploring the South Pacific before
heading to New Zealand.
Come December, Maasdam
journeys along the southern coast of Australia, featuring a special 16-day
holiday cruise departing Dec. 21. The ship spends January cruising the
northwest coast of Australia up to Singapore where it embarks on a 20-day
adventure in the culturally rich Indian Ocean region. Following a 20-day
Southeast Asia itinerary in February 2019, the ship explores the Spice Islands
and ports along the northeastern coast of Australia, then sails back to the
South Pacific and charts a course throughout the idyllic islands. The final EXC
In-Depth cruise is a 24-day Polynesian Crossing ending at San Francisco,
California, May 7, 2019.
Cruises can be combined to form longer voyages extending up to an incredible
239-day adventure that covers French Polynesia, the South Pacific, Australia,
New Zealand, South America, Southeast Asia and the Indian Ocean.
Overnight calls are a highlight of the EXC In-Depth Voyages. Guests will have
overnight experiences in Callao (Lima), Peru; Easter Island; Papeete, French
Polynesia; Tauranga and Waitangi, New Zealand; Adelaide, Australia; Singapore;
Laem Chabang (Bangkok), Thailand; Sihanoukville, Cambodia; Halong Bay, Vietnam;
and Hong Kong, China.
Fares for the EXC In-Depth Voyages start at $1,599 per person, double occupancy
for a 12-day sailing. Taxes, fees and port expenses are additional. Air
specials are available on select cruises: Fly roundtrip Los Angeles,
California, for $999 per person when booking the October 14 or October 28,
2018, 14-Day Polynesian Idyll cruise. Additional gateways also are available
from $1,199 per person.
For more information, contact a travel professional, call 1-877-SAIL-HAL (1-877-724-5425)
or visit hollandamerica.com.
Photos are available at https://www.cruiseimagelibrary.com/c/wgnlfvzn.
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America Line [a division of Carnival Corporation and plc (NYSE: CCL and
Holland America Line's fleet of 14 ships offers more than 500 cruises to more
than 400 ports in 98 countries, territories or dependencies around the world.
From shorter getaways to 113-day itineraries, the company's cruises visit all
seven continents, with highlights including Antarctica explorations, South
America circumnavigations, Cuba cruises and exotic Australia/New Zealand and
Asia voyages; four annual Grand Voyages; and popular sailings to the Caribbean,
Alaska, Mexico, Canada and New England, Bermuda, Europe and the Panama Canal.
The line welcomed Koningsdam
in 2016 and has a second Pinnacle-class ship,
Nieuw Statendam, to
be delivered in December 2018. A third Pinnacle-class ship, due for delivery in
2021, recently was announced.
The company is undergoing $300 million in brand enhancements to secure its
position as the leader in premium cruising. Fleetwide, the ships feature
innovative initiatives and a diverse range of enriching experiences focused on
destination immersion and personalized travel. Guests can expand their
knowledge through an exclusive partnership with O, The Oprah Magazine; during
an America's Test Kitchen show; at Explorations Café presented by The New York
Times; and by taking a Digital Workshop powered by Windows. Outstanding
entertainment fills each evening at venues including Lincoln Center Stage,
Billboard Onboard and B.B. King's Blues Club. The dining experience can be
savored at a variety of restaurants with menus that feature selections from
Holland America Line's esteemed Culinary Council, comprising world-famous chefs
who design dishes exclusively for our guests.