2013 was a very busy year for me work-wise. We decided that we needed a good break and that a Christmas and New Years cruise would be perfect. Just the two of us.
The question was where to go? We kept being drawn back to the 17 day Canary Island cruise. There were lots of sea days for relaxing, interesting ports that we had never been to and the opportunity to spend some time in Amsterdam (one of my favourite cities) pre-cruise. Sold.
We flew to Amsterdam Dec. 17 (arrived the 18th) and had three incredible days in Amsterdam before we took the train to Rotterdam to board the ms Rotterdam.
The published itinerary and the cruise we actually ended up having were very different. No one told us about winter cruising through the Bay of Biscay. We had stormy weather, very rough seas, a calm captain and we gained a healthy respect for the Bay of Biscay. And we missed three ports of call (our second day in Madeira, Arrecife, Canary Islands and Lisbon, Portugal). Holland America compensated passengers with future cruise credit so even though James was a little green around the gills a couple days, we will be back!
Dec. 18-22 Amsterdam
Dec. 22 - Leave Rotterdam
Dec. 23 - Take refuge in Le Havre, France because of storms through the Bay of Biscay
Dec. 24 - Le Havre
Dec. 25 - Le Havre, Merry Christmas! Leave Le Havre around 3 pm
Dec. 26 - at (rough) sea
Dec. 27 - at (rough) sea
Dec. 28 - at sea
Dec. 29 - Madeira, Portugal
Dec. 30 - Tenerife, Canary Islands
Dec. 31 - Las Palmas, Canary Islands
Jan. 1 - at sea, Happy 2014!
Jan. 2 - Casablanca/Rabat, Morocco
Jan. 3 - Cadiz/Seville, Spain
Jan. 4 - at sea (gale force 10 storm)
Jan. 5 - at sea
Jan. 6 - at sea
Jan. 7 - Rotterdam/Delft
Jan. 8 - Rotterdam, fly home