ms Rotterdam

We are gathered in the show lounge

waiting for our tour group to be called to the gangway. Holland America and Princess Cruises both do excellent jobs in keeping things in order while passengers go ashore.
Some cruise lines just let people crowd around the gangway and it's kind of a contest to see
who can get there first and who can crowd their way into first place. This is not fun.

The pictures are typical of mornings before shore excursions. These were taken Wednesday, April 24th, 2005 at Villefranche, France.

We ride the tender to shore.

This is the only port-of-call on this cruise that doesn't have a deep water port
where the Rotterdam can tie up at a pier.
Modern tenders are not a problem to ride if the water's not too rough.
Crew members are always on hand to help people on and off the smaller boat.
See the blue stickers on the ladies in the center of the picture?
Everybody gets a sticker with a color and number. Passengers are allowed to proceed to the gangway, and tour busses are loaded according to color and number.
Everybody on this tender had a blue sticker.
Crewman (in navy) waits to assist passengers.

Tenders are the life boats that would be used in case of a disaster at sea.
ms Rotterdam carries 10 of them. Those doing tender duty have 2 propellers.
Tenders wait all day because not all the passengers go on tour, so they may arrive any time.
Going back to the ship, the tender takes passengers as they arrive.

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Page last updated May 12, 2005.