Chris' (Previous) Daily Journal
January 13, 2010, Fort Lauderdale, Florida
We arrived in Fort Lauderdale around noon and boarded our ship, the Holland America Prinsendam. We have cruised out of and into Fort Lauderdale a couple other times and have always found the process to be very well-organized.
The Prinsendam is a much smaller ship than most (793 passengers, 428 crew members, 38,000 tons) and we are looking forward to the opportunity to meet and get acquainted with fellow shipmates.
Most pleasant for us was that Holland America picked up our bags last week, so all we had to carry with us were computers, cameras and some personal items. The bags were sitting in our cabin when we arrived, so we unpacked in a short period of time.
We are invited to a bon voyage reception on-board at 5pm by Cruise Specialists, the agency that arranged our travel. The Cruise Specialists hosts, Lucia and Henk Barnhoorn, are going to be with us on the entire trip and we will be going ashore with them at a few of the stops.
We will leave at 11pm tonight (we'll be asleep) and head for Key West. It's hard to believe this day has finally arrived - we've been working on our plans and goals for updating South America on worldatlas.com for well over a year.
Fort Lauderdale is a favorite destination for us. It's beautiful, plus there are many things to see and do. We normally would arrive a day or two early, but this time we headed straight to the port from our stay in Orlando.
Perhaps one reason we like Fort Lauderdale so much is because we've made many trips to Venice, Italy and Fort Lauderdale, nicknamed "the Venice of America," reminds us of that great Italian city. Fort Lauderdale is also a major yachting center as well as a popular port city for cruise ships and cargo ships. More than 5,000 ships call at Port Everglades annually.