A Record Five Ships to Sail Europe for Holland America Line in 2006

55 Europe Cruises, More Time in Port, and ms Noordam Debuts

SEATTLE, Sept. 15 /PRNewswire/ — Heading into the 2006 Europe cruise season, Holland America Line deploys a record five ships and introduces a full summer of Mediterranean cruises aboard the new ms Noordam. The premium line covers all of Europe — featuring 14 maiden port calls and 27 unique itineraries sailing the Mediterranean, Scandinavia and Russia, Greenland and Iceland, North Cape and Polar Icecap, Black Sea, North Africa, British Isles and Transatlantic voyages.

“We have increased our 10- to 12-day sailings and added more 15- to 16-day itineraries, with a special focus on sailing the Mediterranean for the entire summer,” said Richard D. Meadows, CTC, senior vice president, marketing and sales. “We’ve added new ports and more time in ports including late departures and overnights, and our onboard culinary arts and guest-speaker programs enhance the unparalleled value of a premium cruise to Europe.”

Fourteen maiden ports of call lead guests to the pristine north of the Arctic Circle, once forbidden Libya, the breezy esplanades of Alicante and Palomos, Spain, or the rainforest-enveloped castles of northern Turkey during one of fifty-five 10- to 35-day cruises in spring through fall of 2006.

In this hallmark European season, Holland America Line will feature the luxury of one- to two-night stays in Amsterdam, Athens, Gdansk, Istanbul, Marseille, St. Petersburg and Venice; and extended evening stays for enjoying night-life in lively ports such as Barcelona, Monte Carlo and Santorini.

The European quintet of ships includes the intimate 793-guest ms Prinsendam designed for longer cruises; the new, state-of-the-art, 1,848-guest Noordam with open, airy spaces; the premium line’s twin flagships the 1,316- guest ms Rotterdam and 1,380-guest ms Amsterdam; and the five-star 1,258-guest ms Maasdam.

Highlights of 2006 Europe Cruises

The new Noordam makes her graceful debut in Europe starting with a 16-day Atlantic crossing with the glamour of a live Big Band followed by a full summer sailing the Mediterranean. Highlights of the Prinsendam sailings feature a 21-day Midnight Explorer journey to Jan Mayen Island and the Arctic Circle and an epic 34-day transatlantic sojourn covering Western Europe. The Rotterdam ventures throughout southern Europe on eight varied itineraries from the thriving arts center of Varna, Bulgaria to the impressive remains of long- vanished empires in Tripoli, Libya.

A vast array of European shore excursions are offered from adventurous Off the Beaten Path tours such as Mallorca kayaking, a four-wheel drive safari in the Sintra Mountains, or riding a jet boat through Helsinki’s waterways, to cultural and historical tours featuring monumental museums, churches and castles, and engaging cultural and folkloric experiences. Medallion excursions deliver exclusive experiences such as Formula One racing in Barcelona and popular Signature Collection touring which provides a private luxury vehicle, a driver and an English speaking guide; guests may design a self-styled itinerary that suits their interests, drawing on the professional expertise of shore excursion staff and the local guide. Hundreds of detailed shore excursion descriptions can be viewed online and are available for booking online approximately six months prior to sailing.

Four culinary experts will sail on European cruises, conducting demonstrations and classes in the Culinary Arts Center presented by Food & Wine magazine. Robert Kinkead, chef/owner, Kinkead’s in Washington, D.C., sails on the May 26 Grand European Capitals cruise aboard the Rotterdam; Michael Lomonaco, chef/director, Guastavino’s in New York City and co-host of Epicurious on the Discovery Channel, sails July 28 aboard the Rotterdam’s Best of the Baltic cruise; Mark Fiorentino, chef, boulanger, Daniel Boulud Restaurants, New York City, joins the Gems of the Baltic cruise on the August 11 departure of the Amsterdam; and Charles Dale, founder, Range and Rustique in Aspen, hosts the Mediterranean Enchantment sailing on September 18 aboard the Noordam.

Multi-Cultured Jewels of the Mediterranean

With the arrival of the Noordam, Holland America Line offers a full summer season of 10-day Mediterranean cruises in 2006. Two different itineraries departing roundtrip from Rome feature either the Western Mediterranean or Eastern Mediterranean and Greek Isles, visiting various ports such as Naples, Italy; Monte Carlo, Monaco; Barcelona and Palma de Mallorca, Spain; La Goulette, Tunisia; Dubrovnik, Croatia; Corfu and Santorini, Greece; Valletta, Malta; and Kusadasi, Turkey. For guests interested in combining the two itineraries, the premium cruise line offers a back-to-back booking option creating a 20-day complete Mediterranean sailing adventure starting from $2,999.

Altogether, three ships in the Mediterranean sail on 25 10- to 16-day cruises from May to October. New ports of call, from Ravenna, Italy, and its Byzantine architecture, to Antalya, Turkey, and its mountain-sculptured beaches, are in store for guests on the flagship Rotterdam and elegant explorer Prinsendam. The Rotterdam offers 10- and 12-day voyages between Lisbon and Athens, with four calls at Tripoli, Libya, which boasts colorful architecture and Roman ruins. The Prinsendam spends extra nights in Athens, Istanbul, Marseille and Venice for added leisure time. Her 16-day Cradle of Civilization itinerary explores eclectic markets in the maiden ports of Bizerte, Tunisia and Banghazi, Libya. Fares start at $1,749 per person, double occupancy.

Discovering the Bounties of the Black Sea

The Rotterdam explores the Black Sea on four 12-day sailings between Venice and Athens, while the Prinsendam’s Sept. 15 Empire of the Ottomans cruise leads guests to the legends of Troy in the maiden port of Canakkale, Turkey. Black Sea ports include Odesa, Ukraine; Constanta, Romania; Istanbul, Turkey; and maiden port calls to Varna, Bulgaria, and Samsun and Trabzon, Turkey, featuring lush valleys and a fourth-century monastery crowning a stunning mountain forest. Cruise fares begin at $2,249 per person, double occupancy.

Best of the Baltic, Scandinavia and Russia

The premium line explores the shimmering sights of Scandinavia and the Baltic on 19 10- to 16-day cruises from May through September. Featured are nine comprehensive Gems of the Baltic cruises, a 10-day compilation of eight interesting ports in six countries in this diverse northern sea. In 2006, every Baltic sailing aboard the twin flagships Rotterdam and Amsterdam includes an overnight in grand St. Petersburg and also calls at regal Scandinavian capitals such as Aarhus, Denmark; Tallinn, Estonia; and Helsinki, Finland on Vikings and Czars, Best of the Baltic, and Treasures of Scandinavia and Russia cruises. Fares start at $1,899 per person.

Aboard the Prinsendam’s 16-day Scandinavian Summer sojourn on June 24 guests enjoy two nights and three days in St. Petersburg as well as an overnight in Gdansk, Poland. A new 21-day Midnight Sun Explorer cruise roundtrip from Amsterdam on July 10 epitomizes awe inspiring scenic cruising, as the ship sails Norwegian fjords, and into the Arctic Circle to northernmost Longyearbyen then on to Iceland and Scotland. Fares start at $3,669 and $5,069 respectively.

Capitals of Europe Come Alive

Offering a taste of Europe’s diverse tapestry, the Rotterdam sails between Athens and Rotterdam or London in May and September, visiting the ancient treasures in Kusadasi, Turkey; Tripoli, Libya; Rome, Italy; Barcelona, Spain; Lisbon, Portugal; and Le Havre (Paris), France. The July 31, 14-day Prinsendam cruise visits Invergordon (Inverness), Scotland; the remote Hebrides; Dublin, Ireland; La Rochelle, France; Leixoes (Porto), Portugal; Funchal, Madeira; and Cadiz, Spain. Fares start at $2,549 per person.

Grand Dames of Transatlantic Cruising

Holland America Line’s eight 17- to 35-day transatlantic sailings offer many options to explore less-visited ports while crossing the ocean. Highlights include Prinsendam’s May 21 Epic Explorer cruise sails from Fort Lauderdale to the maiden port of Narvik, Norway, via La Rochelle, France, and Casablanca, Morocco; docking overnight in the final city of Amsterdam. The Maasdam’s July 1 sailing offers 17, 18 or 35 days of charming towns and stunning fjords in Ireland, Greenland, Iceland and Norway, as she sails roundtrip from Boston, with a chance to embark or disembark in Rotterdam. For a unique taste of two continents, the Rotterdam sails 15-day voyages between Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and Lisbon, Portugal. Ports calls will be made at the Cape Verde Islands off of Africa. Transatlantic cruise fares start at $1,879 per person.

For a 2006 Europe cruise brochure or for more information, consult a professional travel agent, call 1-877-SAIL-HAL (877-724-5425) or visit www.hollandamerica.com.

- www.hollandamerica.com -

About Holland America Line [a division of Carnival Corporation and plc (NYSE:CCL) (NYSE:and) (NYSE:CUK) ]

With the introduction of the 1,848-passenger ms Noordam in early 2006, Holland America Line’s fleet grows to 13 ships, offering nearly 500 cruises from more than 25 home ports. Itineraries range from two to 108 days long and visit all seven continents, including new Australia/New Zealand and Asia sailings, a world cruise and popular sailings to ports in the Caribbean, Alaska, Mexico, Europe, South America, Hawaii and Canada/New England. The ms Noordam also will offer Caribbean sailings in the winter from new homeport New York City.

Holland America Line’s $225 million, fleetwide Signature of Excellence enhancements feature new programs and amenities including the Culinary Arts Center presented by Food & Wine magazine — a state-of-the-art onboard show kitchen where more than 60 celebrated guest chefs and culinary experts will provide cooking demonstrations and classes — Explorations Cafe powered by the New York Times, teens-only activity areas and all new cabin amenities highlighted by flat-panel TVs and plush-top Mariner’s Dream Beds. For more information, consult a travel agent, call 1-877-SAIL-HAL (877-724-5425) or visit www.hollandamerica.com.

World’s Leading Cruise Lines

The highest-rated premium cruise line in the world, Holland America Line is a member of the exclusive World’s Leading Cruise Lines alliance, which also includes Carnival Cruise Lines, Princess Cruises, Cunard Line, Seabourn Cruise Line, Costa Cruises and Windstar Cruises. Sharing a passion to please each guest and a commitment to quality and value, these lines appeal to a wide range of lifestyles and budgets. The World’s Leading Cruise Lines offer exciting and enriching cruise vacations to the world’s most desirable destinations.

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