Holland America’s Oosterdam returns to service
Holland America Line, Oosterdam | credit: hollandamerica.com

Holland America’s Oosterdam returns to service

SEATTLE — Holland America Line is celebrating the resumption of its ninth ship, the Oosterdam, which welcomed back guests this past weekend for the first time since the start of the global pandemic.

The ship departed  Trieste (Venice) on May 8 for a 12-day ‘Holy Lands and Ancient Kingdoms’ cruise that includes an overnight in Haifa, Israel and additional ports in Israel and Greece. Following the cruise, Oosterdam will spend the summer in the Mediterranean, offering seven- to 19-day itineraries roundtrip from Trieste, and between Trieste and Piraeus (Athens), Civitavecchia (Rome), or Barcelona. The ship will explore the entire region with ports in Spain, France, Italy, Greece, Turkey, Israel, Montenegro, Croatia, Albania and Malta.

After the Med season, Oosterdam will depart on a transatlantic crossing to Fort Lauderdale before heading through the Panama Canal and down the western coast of South America to position for a winter season of cruises around the tip of the continent between San Antonio (Santiago), Chile, and Buenos Aires, Argentina. The 14-day itinerary will journey to ports in both countries, including the Falkland Islands, along with cruising in the Strait of Magellan, Glacier Alley and Cape Horn. Three 22-day itineraries add four days of scenic cruising in Antarctica.

To commemorate Oosterdam’s restart, Holland America Line held a ribbon-cutting ceremony in the Trieste terminal to open embarkation, which was attended by the ship’s captain and senior officers. Crew members lined up and waved flags to greet guests as they boarded the ship.

“Our teams work incredibly hard getting the ships ready for a return to service, and the smiles when they see our guests walking up the gangway that first time are so heartfelt and sincere,” said Gus Antorcha, president of Holland America Line. “Each ship back to cruising means more team members back to sea and we look forward to the restart being complete next month.”

Since Holland America restarted cruising in July 2021, Eurodam, Koningsdam, Nieuw Amsterdam, Nieuw Statendam, Noordam, Rotterdam and Zuiderdam have returned to service with cruises in Alaska, the Caribbean, Europe, Mexico, California and South Pacific. Volendam currently is under charter by the government of the Netherlands, positioned in Rotterdam to accommodate Ukrainian refugees.

Holland America Line will complete the restart of the remaining ships in its fleet through June with the Zaandam (May 12 in Fort Lauderdale) and Westerdam (June 12 in Seattle, Washington).