Having slept right through the night we woke up raring to get started on our next adventure... But first we had our silver service breakfast ... ok the tea and coffee pots were white but it felt like it anyway.
Our taxi came to collect us at 10 am. Thinking that there would be a shuttle to take us back into town we happily went down to the port to drop our bags.... Well no shuttle here and the weather was now starting to turn for the worse, so we decided to stay put and wait for check in. Although the boarding passes say 1 pm we did not have to wait long to be checked in, and by 11.30 they called the first group for embarkation.... yay that was us...
This is the first time that we are cruising with Holland America so we were not sure what to expect... Our staterooms were ready, and if we thought that we have had large staterooms on the Ocean Princess , these did not disappoint. A king size bed with room on each side... a 2 seater lounge, miles of hanging space and a bathroom we can both stand in at the same time ..... and I am talking side by side.
Although the Ryndam had its maiden voyage in 1994, it had a refurbishment in 2004 and it now looks like the most modern ship we have been on.
We took this time to explore the ship, with many small bars, a culinary/movie theatre, digital workshop room, internet and library, 2 storey dining room, 5 different shops, a mid ship pool area which can be covered with its retractable roof and an aft Pool which you will be able to use as an ice skating rink if this cold keeps up. Two speciality restaurants, and of course, the Lido buffet restaurant. One thing I think it is missing is a proper theatre. There is only one show room. At least there is a stage (there wasn’t on the Ocean) and there are tables on the dance floor when it is not in use. The rest of the seating is just bench style.
We are on anytime dining which we have decided we don’t like. We have determined we prefer knowing that our table is waiting for us at a special time and we like the rapport that you build with your permanent waiters. One thing that they do differently is that you seem to have only one waiter per table. If you want wine or a drink from the bar you have to wait till they send the wine waiter over to you. He seems to manage all the tables within the section... which is fine except sometimes you could well into your appetiser before you get a sip of wine.
We ate lunch up at the Lido and for the first 2 days they are going to serve the food to prevent any sickness on board...This is fine except that it really does slow things up, plus it means that there are less waiters to clear tables and get you drinks... Once again you can’t just order a drink from any waiter in the Lido Buffet; it has to be a specified drinks waiter.
Looking at making some new friends we went to evening trivia that is held in the Mix Bar ... you can see this will be an issue once more and more people start coming as the area is small. We met a lovely couple, originally from the UK, but now live in America. Now as the days have passed we have starting having dinner with them each night. They are also on for the full 21 days.
As this is really a 7 day cruise the demographics are quite different to what we are used to. The are a lot of young people and as this is a sailing out of the UK, the majority are British.