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20th June, 2016


Despite some rather miserable weather, we and our guests were looking forward to our visit to Ijmuiden. The port is the gateway to Amsterdam, capital of the Netherlands and a very lively city. Naturally many passengers had booked one of our organised shore excursions.

One of the first to depart was a ‘Panoramic Amsterdam and Canal Cruise’. This tour not only allowed our guests to enjoy seeing the historic landmarks of the city, but also to cruise the waterways of a city often compared with Venice, due to the number of its islands and canals. A canal cruise was also a part of the next tour - ‘Highlights of Amsterdam’. This one took those interested through the most intriguing places of Amsterdam like the Anne Frank House and the Western Church among others. Those trying to get away from the big city chose ‘Taste of Holland’, where our guests visited a place called Zaandam just north of Amsterdam and here visited a quaint Dutch Windmill village that has been restored to re-create an 18th century community. There were once originally over 500 windmills in the Zaanstreek area and eight have been preserved at the village. Guests also visited a cheese factory just outside Edam and got to taste a selection of delicious cheeses made of goat, cow and sheep’s milk.

Back on board, after sailing out from Ijmuiden, together with my officers and staff I had the chance to formally welcome our guests during my cocktail party. We then all moved to the dining room where we all enjoyed a fantastic dinner prepared by our Executive Chef George Streeter and his team. It was a great opportunity for me to sit with some of our guests and chat about their experiences during this and other cruises. It was then time for the highlight of this evening’s entertainment. One of Europe’s most sought after female sopranos, Laura Glaves, gave a fantastic performance singing a selection of her favourite operatic arias.

Krzysztof Majdzinski

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