Holland America Line’s ms Amsterdam will depart Fort Lauderdale, Fla., on an epic 113-day round-trip journey around the world that will touch the shores of 38 ports across five continents. Rather than taking a traditional course, the Amsterdam will cross the equator four times on the 2014 Grand World Voyage and sail a route that deeply explores the Southern Hemisphere.
For guests who want to take part in this annual tradition but have less time on their hands, eight segments ranging in length from 20 to 86 days are available from departure ports along the route. Seven overnight calls, evening theme balls, local entertainment brought on board and a host of other highlights ensure every segment is exciting and memorable.
“When it comes to a dream vacation, our Grand World Voyage is as special as you can get due to its length, number of ports and exotic destinations, and our 2014 voyage is no exception,” said Richard Meadows , executive vice president, marketing, sales and guest programs for Holland America Line. “Every year we like to change the Grand World Voyage itinerary so each journey is one of a kind and features calls that offer some of the most sought-after sights and experiences in the world.”
Following Amsterdam’s departure from Fort Lauderdale, Fla., the ship will take a westerly course from the Atlantic to the Pacific Ocean via a daylight transit of the Panama Canal. Two full overnights at Callao, Peru, enable guests to take an overland tour to Machu Picchu, also known as the Lost City of the Incas and one of the most breathtaking sites in the world.
Easter Island remains on the “must see” list of every avid traveler for its remote location and eerie moai sculptures, and guests on this voyage will get to visit it and Pitcairn Island before an overnight call at Papeete, French Polynesia. Amsterdam’s guests will explore six more ports in the South Pacific before heading Down Under to Australia.
For the 2014 Grand World Voyage, Amsterdam sails up the east coast of Australia following an overnight call at Sydney. Extra time in one of the most popular ports on the journey allows for an evening at the famed Sydney Opera House, the opportunity to climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge or an overland tour to Ayers Rock . The ship also calls at Brisbane and Yorkeys Knob (Cairns), Australia.
Two calls at Papua New Guinea, lead the way to Yap Island, Micronesia, which features lush greenery, beautiful beaches and a diverse marine life including the fascinating giant manta ray. The ship then calls at Cebu and Manila, Philippines, before an anticipated arrival at Hong Kong, China, where guests will have an overnight visit to take in the bustling markets, historic sites and vibrant culture.
Blending Asian traditions with a pristine western cityscape, next guests will have an overnight call at Singapore to get to know the bustling city. This call also acts as the departure point for an overland tour to Cambodia and Angkor Wat, one of the most important archaeological sites in Southeast Asia.
The ship continues its westerly course to Phuket, Thailand, and Colombo, Sri Lanka, before heading south and calling at the stunning island port of Victoria, Mahe, in the Seychelles. An overnight call at this picture-perfect paradise allows for time to relax on the beaches and wander through the colorful Victoria Botanical Gardens.
Amsterdam’s African exploration continues with calls at Port Louis, Mauritus, and La Possession, Reunion, before spending time at two South African ports. Guests will have the opportunity to visit Durban — the largest city in South Africa — before an overnight call at Cape Town, one of the most iconic cities in the world. The ship then makes its way up the west coast of Africa with calls at Walvis Bay, Namibia, which touches the edge of the Namib Desert; the remote island of Jamestown, Saint Helena, where Napoleon Bonaparte spent his last days; Georgetown, Ascension Island, with its historic World War II connection and 44 volcano craters; Banjul, Gambia, where a camel safari, canoe adventure and the Abuko Nature Reserve await, and finally Dakar, Senegal, one of west Africa’s largest cities and home to a newly completed African Renaissance Monument.
Following a call at Mindelo, Cape Verde, nearly 400 miles off the coast of Africa, Amsterdam sets a course for the Caribbean on the final leg of the Grand World Voyage. Guests will have three days on the tropical islands of Barbados, Dominica and St. Maarten before concluding the journey at Fort Lauderdale.