Holland America doubles sailings

Holland America Line, will nearly double its roundtrip sailings from Seattle to Alaska in 2006, adding a third ship to offer a total of 61 departures from May 5 through September 22. Last year, the line, the leader in Alaska Cruises and CruiseTours, featured 37 seven-day cruises on two ships from Seattle.

Guests that book an Ocean-View Stateroom or higher by February 28, 2006, will receive free parking in Seattle on select cruises in May, June and July, a great convenience and a value of $70. Guests who book a suite on selected cruises receive a free pre-cruise night at Seattle’s Fairmont Olympic.

Vista-class ship ms Oosterdam returns to sail another season of seven-day Alaskan Explorer cruises, joined in 2006 by sister ship ms Westerdam.

Together the two 1,848-passenger liners will offer a total of 40 seven-day cruises from Seattle, most highlighting Alaska’s immense Hubbard Glacier and Yakutat Bay. However, nine sailings on the Westerdam will cruise to spectacular Glacier Bay National Park, boosting the total number of Holland America Line voyages to this renowned site in 2006.

Glacier Bay departure dates are May 7, 14 and 28, July 16, 23 and 30, August 20, September 10 and 17. Also new to Seattle, the 1,432-passenger ms Zaandam completes the trio featuring 21 cruises which showcase Glacier Bay as well.

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“The increasing demand for seven-day Alaska cruises, coupled with the convenience of departing from a U.S. port, is driving our expansion of cruises departing from Seattle,” said Richard D. Meadows, CTC, senior vice president, marketing and sales. “The 61 sailings we’ll offer next summer make up 40 percent of our total deployment to Alaska in 2006, a total of 159 cruises on eight, five-star ships.”

All the Westerdam’s and Oosterdam’s cruises call at the ports of Juneau, Sitka, Ketchikan and Victoria, B.C. The sailings to the Hubbard Glacier and Yakutat Bay spend a half-day cruising past the glacier’s massive face: five miles wide and 400 feet tall. Pristine Yakutat Bay offers excellent opportunities to view marine wildlife as well as icebergs calving.

The scenic area is bordered by some of the tallest mountains in North America, including Mt. St. Elias, the third tallest mountain in North America. Cruise fares on start at $699 per person, double occupancy.

The ms Zaandam offers 21 Friday departures from Seattle May 5 through Sept. 22, sailing the Alaskan Explorer via Glacier Bay itinerary. The ship calls at Juneau, Sitka, Ketchikan and Victoria, B.C., and spends a full day cruising spectacular Glacier Bay National Park.
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