2018 MS Amsterdam Grand World Voyage

Suzi and I celebrated our 50th anniversary (a little early, our anniversary is in June) by taking a World Cruise.  The MS Amsterdam is took us to Central America, the South Pacific, New Zealand, Australia, South East Asia, Indian Ocean isles, Southern Africa, Western Africa and the Caribbean.  I took pictures and wrote down my thoughts. Instead of a journal or letters I blogged.  When the cruise started we felt like we were crashing a private party, so many people were repeat world cruisers.  By the time it was over we were part of the party.  You can read my blog posts below.   The earliest one first.  If you want to skip to the Coda click here.

Excited and a Bit Nervous.

The Alaska Airlines Milk Run.

Will This be the Ship…  That Carries Us Into the Storm?

A Sandman Shivering on Ft. Lauderdale Beach.

Building Civil Society on a Cruise Ship

No Taxes Forever, on Order of the King  (The Cayman Islands.)

Ethnically Rich, Biologically Diverse, Economically Poor. Puerto Limon, Costa Rica

Brutalist or Welcoming, The Cathedral of the Sacred Heart, Puerto Limon Costa Rica

Banana Train, Puerto Limon, Costa Rica

Sloths, Crocs and Herons

The Second Time Around, The Panama Canal

Neo Panamax

Frank Gehry in Panama

Panama Etc.

Day at Sea (X8) or Sailing Through the Doldrums.

Looking for Bali Hi — in the Marquesas

Ukulele Playing Saint — In Nuka Hiva

Tikis on Nuka Hiva

Busted — Another Sea Day

Rangiroa — Shooting the Tiputa Pass.

Octopuses Garden – No Octopus

“Our Lady” and the Internet.

Urban Polynesia – Pape’ete

Surprise, Surprise, Surprise – Moorea.

Shark Shark

The Footsteps of Michener — Bora Bora

“Half the fun is getting there.” — Rarotonga, Cook Islands

Pearl Jam

Niue on Sunday

Lost Day at Sea

America’s Cup

Lunch in Devonport

Extreme Sports into the Sunset

Happy People — Mount Maunganui

It Fell Like A House of Cards — St. John’s Cathedral, Napier NZ.

Cars older than Cuba’s – Napier, New Zealand.Cars older than Cuba’s – Napier, New Zealand.

A Tragic Solution, The Napier

Art Deco Town – Napier, New Zealand.

Albatross, Penguins and Timber, Otago Bay, South Island.

A Railway Station and its city – Dunedin

 Taieri Gorge Railroad.

Fjordlands National Park — Dusky Soound

Doubtful Sound but Familiar Names.

Evaporating Waterfalls —  Milford Sound

Community Knitting Project — Sydney

The Rocks Is

Sydney Opera House.

Badu Gili – Water Light.

Workingman’s Beach, — Bondi

QVB in the CBD

Fulfilling Pop’s Dream

Public Art and Pocket Parks —

Community Radio and Kangaroos

It Must Be Raindrops

Why Cruise Ship Life is a Lot Like Living in Southeast Alaska

A Town Reflecting on Slaughter

Albany and Torndirrup National Park,


You Owe Five Farthings (Say the Bells of …)

Perth Post

Yellow Stripes and a Cappuccino Strip.

But Tourists Never Go There — Pura Luhur Batukau

Jatiouwith Rice Fields

Pura Tamam Ayun:

Bad Monkey  — Ulu Watu


Tying up loose ends in Bali

Palawan Puts on a Big Welcome.

Sharon Stone and the Virgin Mary – The Puerto Princesa Underground River.

Three More Days, Two More Days, One more Day TODAY!!

Defensive Driver — Manila

Gustave Eiffel in Manila?

Rescued by a Buggy Whip — Intramuros Manila.

Douglas MacArthur Had Dessert Here – The Manila Hotel

Manila Odds and Ends.

Good-by Manila.

Star Ferry — Hong Kong.

A Tale of Two Hotels

Norman Foster in Hong Kong.

Dim Sum at the Top.  The Peak Tram

Hong Kong Memories

“Chewing the Fat,” a Persecuted Sect and an Unexpected Fire Drill

Good Morning Viet Nam

Five O’clock Follies

The Courts of Hell with a Trigger Warning.

Tiger Balm Gardens Rebranded.

Little India — Singapore

Hanging Gardens of Singapore

Asia for Beginners.

Singapore Miscellany

How Do You Pronounce “Phuket?”

The Viceroy, Almost To Kandy.

Through My Train Window.

Elephant Wash — Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage

Colombo, Sri Lanka

World’s Smallest Capital City

Beau Vallon Beachm Mahe, Seyschelles

A Pirate’s Grave — Reunion

Sharks Can Hurt the Economy. — Reunion

French Bureaucrats Can’t Ruin a Sunset.


Easter on MS Amsterdam

Maputo’s Classic Railway Station

Namesake Cape? Almost — Cape Maclear, South Africa

Blessed by the Bishop

Cape of Big Storms — Cape of Good Hope

Walking with African Penguins

Home Port — Simons Town

Card-Bordeaux in Stellenbosch

Reformed and re-Reformed.

Victoria and Alfred — Cape Town Waterfront

A Walk Through Cape Town

Cape of Good Hope Castle

Cut Short on Both Ends

Thoughts on Leaving Cape Town

Our Big Splurge in Namibia – WOW!

Artifacts at Sandwich Harbor.

Life in the Desert

Germany in Africa

An Enclave no more – Walvis Bay

Sunset Rainbow – Sailing Out of Luanda.

Radio Silence.

The Last Gasp of Socialist Realism. — Luanda

Do We Really Need an Ambulance — Luanda

Zero — Zero

Amsterdam Art 101, (Musings on a Sea Day)

Corruption and Color– The Gambia.

Kunta Kinta

Busman’s Holiday — Development Projects in The Gambia.

Do the Hustle – Dakar

In Dakar the Hardware Store Comes to You

Europe with Soul — Cape Verde

Kriol Jazz Festival– Cape Verde

One Nation’s Hero — Another Nation’s Thug

Amsterdam Art 202

My Understanding of Stuff

Crowd Sourcing Help Please — San Juan.

Are We Home Yet? — San Juan

Fortified San Juan

Sunrise, Sunset, Sail Out.

San Juan Stories

A Whirlwind Finish

S#it Happens. — Re-entry

Coda – Around the World at 19 Miles an Hour…


By the numbers:

  • We sailed 34,128 Nautical Miles, 39,274 statute miles or 63,205 KM
  • The Cruise lasted 113 days
  • We visited 39 ports in 26 countries or territories
  • We missed one port due to weather and substituted one port because of the bubonic plague.
  • We used 18 currencies (20 if you count the Panamanian Balboa which is the same as a dollar and the Namibian dollar, which is the same as the South African rand.)
  • I took 16,916 pictures and posted 3,504 on either my blog or Facebook (not counting this post.)
  • We broke three cameras.
  • This cruise blog has 143 posts including this one. I didn’t count words.
  • I lost about 5 pounds.

5 thoughts on “2018 MS Amsterdam Grand World Voyage

  1. I’ve subscribed to your blog as I love your writing style and also to get a first timers perspective of the WC. Have cruised for years with HAL, it’s easy to forget what it’s like to be relatively “new” to long cruises. You are in great hands with Capt. Jonathan! He’s taken great care of us in the past what with dealing with weather, etc.! Enjoy; I know you will!

  2. Hi, Rich! I’m going to be joining you all in Hong Kong and have been following you along with The Inside Cabin to keep up with daily ship life. Since I’m not one of those with “status”, I’m going to have to use the laundry room a few times. If you have time on a sea day, could you pop up or down to Deck 3 or Deck 6 and check out the cost of the washers/dryers for me? If they’re actual coin operated machines, do I have to load up on quarters? I’d really appreciate it! Thanks, Patti

  3. Hi Patti, Both washers and dryers take US quarters but I am not sure how many. When I go up to the front desk later I can ask if they make change. But otherwise I guess I would stock up. See you in a week or so.

    Take Care,

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