Maasdam 2012 - 25 Collector's Cruise

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Krazy Kruizers

Holland America Specialist
Tues, Feb 21 - St John's, Antigua

It has been years since we have been here. In fact the other 2 or 3 times we have been here we tendered into the other side of the island.

Also in port with us was the AIDAluna and the Marina (Oceania).

We decided to do a tour here -- Nelson's Dockyard -- did this on our first cruise here in the 80's.

It was quite a long walk over a roufh boardwalk from where our ship docked to where the buses were.

And the boardwalk goes on -- keep walking and turn left at the yellow top tent and walk another 1/4 mile to the parking lot

Once we got to the bus lot -- some rules -- one walker / wheelchair per bus which were small. Our driver had trouble closing my walker -- after a few times - he got the hang of it -- it had to take the extra seat up by him. I have no idea how they handle the wheelchairs.

On our way out from the bus compound we passed by the old water reservoir which is now nothing but a car washing pond as it is so poluted.

St John's Cathedral

Krazy Kruizers

Holland America Specialist
We had been told that we would be able to spend 1 1/2 hours at Nelson's Dock Yard. That didn't happen. With 3 ships in the road to get there was jammed and as a result we had only 45 minutes to walk around. We were also given tickets to get a soft drink. The lines were a mile long for the only place that was open for the drinks. So chose to walk around and we still didn't get to see everything.

We thought we could get our free drink here -- but it was closed.


Krazy Kruizers

Holland America Specialist
Today was Mardi Gras Day -- and there wasn't anything mentioned about it on the ship or in the daily Explorer program.

This evening was the VIP cocktail party in the Crow's Nest. Many of us already knew each so we grouped as soon as we entered the room.. No -- everyone was not a suite guest in our group. But we had a blast talking about various cruises and things that went wrong. There were about 60 peope ther. This time I was amused that the captain and hotel manager saw how we had all grouped and they didn't bother to circulate around the room.

Krazy Kruizers

Holland America Specialist
Wed, Feb 22 -- Martinique

It is Ash Wednesday and we were told that there would be very taxi's and very shops would be open. Seems like we are always here on either a Sunday or a holiday of some sort.

As compared to some other ports -- the pier is not that long but there was a free shuttle car to take you from the ship to the end of the pier and vice versa. The walk from the end of the pier to where the tour buses are is longer.

New building being built at the end of the pier


Krazy Kruizers

Holland America Specialist
Just some interesting buildings

This area is where the vendors usually are -- but the day we were there only the food vendors opened at noon.

Around 3:30 the parades and the festival started so instead of waiting until 5 to leave and since everyone was back on the shp, the captain left at 4:30.

Krazy Kruizers

Holland America Specialist
The first time we were in Martinique was back in the 80's and we did an all day tour that included St Pierre. The next few times we were there on Princess and NCL we were fortunate to dock on the right side of the Fort and enjoyed walking the fort and park area. We were not impressed with the people and their rudeness.

Then we sailed HAL and ended up at a pier not close to anything. The last couple of times we have docked to the left of the fort -- but still too far a walk to do the fort and the park.

JMO -- but we would rather go to Dominica than Martinique.

Krazy Kruizers

Holland America Specialist
Thurs, Feb 23 - Barbados

Originally we were to be here from 8 - 5 -- but our times were changed: 8 - 7.

The ship was a buzz as we noticed that we were arriving early. We were told by the Pinnacle manager that an important ship was due in with some important people -- Prrince Edward and Princess Sophia -- the Duke and Dutchess of Wessex.

Well there was already one HUGE yacht there:

which is the 13th largest yacht in the world owned by Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani (yatch worth about 2 billion dollars give or take a million or two). So they didn't come over on that ship.

Then this ship (Kristina Katarina) arrived right after us and we couldn't see them on that ship.

Shortly after the Kristina Katarina arrived a naval vessel docked behind our ship

Some kind of a ceramony was to take place between 9:30 and 10 AM as the red carpet was laid down

Krazy Kruizers

Holland America Specialist
Somehow we missed getting a picture of Prince Edward as he came of the ship.

Princess Sophia is in the light colored dress

Orince Edward is in the dark slacks, white jacket with blue belt and dark hat with red band

Inspection of the troops

tried to get a picture of the 21 gun salute