Would you like to explore beautiful cities, but are you dreading all the arrangements in advance? Then a cruise is perfect. Holland America Line offers cruises to Northern Europe and next year they will offer even more routes to the North. Many new ports are visited, and it is often possible to sail from the Netherlands. Depart easily from Rotterdam, Amsterdam or IJmuiden (near Amsterdam).
Holland America Line also offers overnight stays in cities such as Copenhagen and Reykjavík. From the port you can come straight from the ship into the city. Below we discuss four highlight ports that you can visit with a Holland America Line cruise.
1 – Reykjavik
The northernmost capital of the world is characterized by a relaxed atmosphere and beautiful nature around the city. Impressive views, hot springs, rainbow-colored houses: you’ll find it all here. Less well known is the great cultural offer that the Icelandic capital has to offer: the museums and art galleries are of absolute world class. In the restaurants you will find a mix of Scandinavian dishes and international cuisine and afterwards you can visit one of the cozy cafés or bars.
2 – Tallinn
On the coast of the Baltic Sea, you will find Tallinn, Estonian’s largest – and very charming – city. This oldest capital in Northern Europe, dating from the 12th century, was built as a bustling port in the network of Hanseatic cities. Explore the highest part of Toompea Hill, home to the 19th-century Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, a fortress from the Russian Empire, then continue to the lower part for churches and merchant houses along winding medieval streets. A short walk from the center takes you to a very different, modern part of the city with glass buildings and trendy restaurants and boutiques.
3 – Eidfjord
An odd one out on this list, because the Norwegian Eidfjord is not actually a city, but a village with fewer than 1000 inhabitants. But because it is one of the most beautiful villages in Norway, because of the beautiful nature in the nearby Hardangervidda National Park, it is still an ideal destination during a cruise through Northern Europe. In the shadow of the snow-capped mountain peaks and near blue-green fjords, you can enjoy hiking, cycling and cross-country skiing, come face to face with wild reindeer and admire the 182-meter high Vøringfossen waterfall. The journey from the Hardangerfjord to the Eidfjord, a branch, is so impressive that you don’t want to miss this adventure.
4 – Stockholm
In Stockholm, built on 14 islands, you will never be bored. In the elegant Östermalm are posh interior design shops; in the green Djurgården you will find museums and parks; old Gamla Stan is a must-see with its cobbled streets surrounding the Royal Palace; and trendy Södermalm with its nice streets are perfect for strolling through. You can enjoy a delicious meal here – whether you like culinary delights or a cold beer with traditional meatballs or herring.
The great thing about a cruise trip is that you see multiple destinations, but only unpack your suitcase once. With Holland America Line, transportation, accommodation, food and entertainment are all included. You usually sail at night, so you can discover new locations during the day. The service on board is of unprecedented luxury: your cabin is made ready twice a day, you can enjoy a delicious dinner in one of the restaurants.