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Departing on 7 Sep 2024 from Amsterdam aboard the Nieuw Statendam - Cruise No: 2016560
A stop in Amsterdam offers the chance to explore the sights of one of Europe’s most colorful, dynamic and historic cities—one with a well-earned reputation as a laid-back and inviting place for people of all stripes. Visitors are naturally drawn to the historic city center where you’ll find some of the world’s top art museums, including the Rijksmuseum and the Van Gogh Museum. And at Dam Square, the Amsterdam’s largest public square, you can tour the Royal Palace before continuing to the tourist attractions on the Canal Belt. The iconic network of waterways that surrounds the downtown area offers a picturesque backdrop for sightseeing by bike or canal boat. Be sure to visit the floating Bloemenmarkt to peruse famed Dutch tulips, and take time to wander and window-shop among the narrow lanes of de Jordaan. And you won’t have to look far in Amsterdam to find delicious Dutch treats along the way. Just duck into a cozy brown café to sample a plate of bitterballen with mustard and a beer, and grab a gooey sweet stroopwafel from a street vendor as you stroll.
Seaside cafés and a tour of a venerable working lighthouse beckon, as does Santiago de Compostela, one of Christianity’s holiest sites.
From lovely Oporto enjoy a leisurely drive along the Rio d’Ouro (River of Gold) into port wine country. Hear the fascinating story of its origin; taste test the season’s best.
Find your way in the city that launched the Age of Discovery. Cross the River Tagus on its soaring suspension bridge, watched over by a colossal statue of Christ. Wander the maze of streets in the Alfama, the old Moorish quarter, dominated by the medieval Castle of St George where peacocks strut and shriek. Stroll the Baixa and refuse to leave without a pair of elegant shoes.
Hanging off the southwestern edge of Spain, Cádiz is one of Andalucía’s regional capitals and a place bursting with personality. Europe’s oldest continually inhabited city, with a history stretching back 3,000 years, has fallen on hard times in recent years, but a combination of pride, good humor and stoicism keeps it on an even keel. The famous Carnival, one of Spain’s most important in the genre, is a thrilling fiesta into which Cádiz pours all its energy and ingenuity.
The city’s fond nickname, la tacita de plata (“little silver cup”), alludes to its curious geography—it juts out on a long peninsula into a sheltered bay. Old town Cádiz is a warren of cobbled streets where the houses, painted white or dusty ochre, have the weather-beaten look of a place subjected to centuries of wind and salt. This ancient city has one good example of everything that matters: a great food market, a theater (the Teatro Falla, a grand Art Nouveau Moorish gem), a gorgeous cathedral, impressive fortifications and a beach—the picturesque and famous La Caleta.
This strategic link between the Atlantic and the Mediterranean has been ruled by the Spanish, British and Moors. As long as the Barbary Apes remain, the British will rule Gibraltar this is the tradition that has held for 350 years. These pesky primates are a favorite with visitors despite their incessant chatter and light-fingered ways. Ride to the top of the Rock for great views over the Strait of Gibraltar-on a clear day you’ll see Africa.
There are more than two millennia of history to embrace in this port city in Spain’s southeastern Murcia region. While Cartagena is famously home to the second-largest Roman amphitheater on the Iberian Peninsula, the city is much more than just spectacular ancient ruins.
In addition to Cartagena’s architecture—along with that amphitheater, there are striking Art Nouveau buildings, neoclassical churches and ultramodern edifices throughout the city—you’ll find many opportunities to shop for local and regional artisan wares. In the city, investigate the restored medieval fortress looking out on the bay from the city’s highest point. Or take a short trip by car or bus to the historic Agrupa Vicenta Mines, the remarkable palm forest at Elche and the holy city of Caravaca.
And the food of sunny Murcia! Friendly tapas bars with breezy terraces invite lingering over drinks, coffee or snacks. The local restaurants offer more than typical Spanish tapas on the menu—michirones (a spicy Murcian bean stew) and local spins on paella are widely available and worth a try. Grilled octopus, fried calamari, mussels and the freshest fish are some of the tasty benefits of the city’s perch beside the sea.
Famous for paella at Pepica’s, favorite of Ernest Hemingway when he came to Valencia for bullfight festivals. Overlooking the Gulf of Valencia and the Balearic Islands, this Spanish jewel blends ancient and new in its historic center, where the Barrio del Carmen neighborhood uses the old walls of the city in its more modern structures. Walk the cobblestone streets to the chic Colon Street, home to local boutiques-or take in the sublime views from Las Arenas beach or one of the many delightful plazas. Sample shore excursions: Valencia City Tour.
When you embark on a cruise to Rome with Holland America Line you experience its bustling modernism along with its rich history. You can walk in the footsteps of emperors, have coffee in Renaissance piazzas and see contemporary art all in one afternoon. Your sightseeing time in Rome begins at the nearby port of Civitavecchia, a seaside town with roots that stretch back to the Etruscan era. Take note of the Forte Michelangelo (both Bramante and Michelangelo had a hand in its design), and the lungomare, a lively stretch along the sea with beach clubs, bars and restaurants.
Once in the Eternal City you can fill your day with museums, churches, archaeological sites, traditional trattorias, artisan shops and, of course, gelato. The Colosseum and the Vatican Museums are Rome’s superstar attractions, but there are plenty of quieter gems to explore. For food lovers there are the markets in Campo de’ Fiori or the slightly farther flung Testaccio. The hip neighborhood of Monti, next to the Colosseum, has a vibrant piazza scene and boutique shopping, while the Villa Borghese offers a green oasis with a view towards Saint Peter’s Basilica and the masterpiece-filled Galleria Borghese. Although Rome might not have been built in one day, you’ll certainly be able to see its highlights on our Rome cruises along with the top things to do there in 24 hours.
Nieuw Statendam, a sister ship to Koningsdam and the second of our Pinnacle-class ships, features a design inspired by the fluid curves of musical instruments. Guests can savor her innovative specialty restaurants—from Sel de Mer to the Grand Dutch Cafe. Enjoy live music and entertainment from the Rolling Stone Rock Room, B.B. King’s Blues Club, and more. Explore the thrill of BBC Earth Experiences presentations at our spectacular two-story World Stage.
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