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What to do on HAL cruises on cruise days?


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Cooking demonstrations are free.


Cooking classes are $29 per person -- limited to 12 people. After you make the food, you are treated to a free lunch in the Pinnacle with free wine.



Thanks for the info. I didn't know that! Great! Anything including a "free" meal is a winner.

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I'm curious. What is it that you would like to do on a sea day that isn't provided? I'm one of those who is happy to relax and read, walk around the deck, gaze at the horizon, go to a cooking demo, see a movie, go to the spa, go to the gym etc.


I answered a question - I really don't see that I have to explain myself no more than I expect you to explain why you enjoy what you enjoy doing. Fortunately, we are all different.;)

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I love sea days! The more the better....for me


If no particular daily activity jumped out at me, this is what I'd do >


After breakfast, I'll walk the promenade deck for an hour listening to music on my Ipod. Then maybe, about 45 minutes of sun (if it's out) and a quick sauna before freshening up. After that, maybe up to the Crows Nest and I'll check email & Boston news (on the slow satellite internet) and then unwind in one of those great swivel chairs with my Kindle. Then I might play in the afternoon (usually 1 p.m.) Texas Hold 'em tourney (on TA's, it is usually the same group every sea day which is fun). A light lunch around 2-3 (after the buffet closes), maybe a sandwich or small pasta. Maybe afternoon tea with DW. Back to the cabin and maybe some more Kindle and a nap.


I been to plenty of lectures and I always enjoy the talks given about the ship by the Captain, Hotel Manager or Environmental Officer. I've done one "behind the scenes" tour (which was great) and would do it again. Royal Dutch Tea is must for us. DW loves the Thermal Suite, Crows Nest and Silk Den (if available).


To me, the day goes by fast at sea and the relaxation level is about 9.5 on a 1 - 10 scale, which is the paramount standard for us. Maybe when we're retired and when we board the ship and we're already pretty relaxed, then maybe we might want for more. But for now, I could sit on the balcony and just watch the endlessness of the sea and be perfectly happy. ;)

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Lizzie, you don't have to explain yourself to anyone!


I know people who cruise to explore ports. I know people who don't bother getting off the ship in port, because to them the ship is the destination.


People choose to cruise for all kinds of reasons. No one reason is *more correct* than another.

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We LOVE sea days…and choose some itineraries just because of them.

To entertain you (if you're not a reader as we are), there are lectures (not necessarily on port-related subjects), cooking classes, dance classes, movies (some of the "bigger ones" are in the main theater/lounge instead of the smaller "movie theater,") if you're crafty they have assorted crafts (they had a box of yarn and needles for us to work with for gifts for children in various ports,) all kinds of games going on, the usual putting contests, etc…but no hairy chest ones! There's always Trivia.

The more sea days, the more time you have to meet your fellow passengers, so we've often spent hours visiting with our "new friends." There can be "interesting" emergencies…like watching a C-130 drop emergency supplies to the ship (that killed an afternoon!…surprised the boat didn't tip over with everyone on one side of the ship!)

HAL libraries are very good, so you can research your next ports, read some book you never thought about reading (they even have cookbooks), or just sit and look out the beautiful windows.

I'm sure you will wonder where the time went…

Then…there's always napping on the deck (HAL ships have a great deck to relax on).

Enjoy your trip!


Good information! I'm just glad there isn't a hairy chest contest. I enjoy the trivia games, talking to new folks, dancing and of course --napping! So I think I'll be happy with a HAL cruise.

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We like sea days.

They give us an opportunity to focus on the things we spend our hard earned money and precious vacation days on: the sea, the sun and the ship.

Advanced HAL ships are not the same as Carnival ships.

They have been designed and equipped differently.

So such activities like enjoying promenades, sun decks, pools, hydropool & thermal suite, observation lounges and afternoon tea (and dining in general) on HAL ships have very different value and meaning in comparison with Carnival Destiny class ships you have cruised before.

That's why we enjoy every minute of those activities and never have time for anything else (except the gym and meetings with officers).


We cruise on Carnival too. My favorite is the Miracle.

But the newest HAL ships is a different world.


I would suggest HAL's most advanced ships the Eurodam and the Nieuw Amsterdam as the best introduction to Holland America Line.

Also note that these ships are floating museums of art and maritime history. So might want to spend some time exploring their wonderful expositions (especially the Eurodam).


Enjoy your cruises!

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I have not cruised HAL yet, so thanks for the great information. I am looking forward to my first HAL cruise next September. I love tea in the afternoon, and I love watching the sea, and I am hoping that cruising to Alaska will give me a bit more than just water to look at. But for me, the best part of the cruise is to look out and see the water, what flies over the water, and what might pop out of the water, the motion of the water, and I get very zen and do not need to do anything. Except drink coffee and eat....;)

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