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Holland America Expands Mexican Riviera Cruises

Westerdam will visit the Mexican Riviera in 2016-17. © Holland American Line

Holland America Line is expanding the number of cruises along the Mexican Riviera during 2016 and 2017.

The company also is returning one of its largest ships to the region. The Mexican Riviera consists of a series of ports along the west coast of Mexico stretching from Ensenada in the north to Acapulco in the south.

The ms Westerdam, which can carry nearly 2,000 passengers, will have 13 cruises of seven days each that depart from San Diego, California.

The ms Westerdam will depart Oct. 18, 2016, from Vancouver, stop in Santa Barbara and then San Diego to begin its first seven-day voyage.

From there, it will travel to the Mexican Riviera ports at Cabo San Lucas, Mazatlán and Puerto Vallarta before going back to San Diego. Travelers who want and 11-day itinerary can board at Vancouver. Others who want the seven-day version of the cruise will board in San Diego.

The series of seven-day cruises will continue through Feb. 7, 2017. Mexican Riviera weather usually has low average rainfall and moderate temperatures from late October through February.

3 Ports of Call

Each itinerary includes Cabo San Lucas, Mazatlán and Puerto Vallarta.

Passengers will find that Cabo San Lucas, located on the southern tip of Baja California peninsula, has one of the most developed tourism harbors along the Mexican Riviera. The giant C-shaped harbor is lined with shops, restaurants and entertainment.

One of the best shore excursions is a boat trip to Land’s End, which includes Lover’s Beach, a sea lion colony, The Arch and Pelican Rock. A typical excursion will last about 2.5 hours and cost about $30 to $50 depending on whether it includes food and beverages.

Mazatlán, the next port of call, lies due east of Cabo San Lucas on the mainland coast of Mexico. It is best known for sportfishing and other watersports along with an historic town center.

Puerto Vallarta sits beside one of the world’s largest bays. Like Mazatlán, it is known for watersports as well as its beaches. El Centro is the town square and popular for colonial architecture. The Cathedral of Our Lady of Guadalupe is the city’s religious centerpiece.

Holland America will offer the “On Location” program for each of the cruises. The program gives passengers a chance to experience the dining, traditions and cultures of the places being visited. The Mexican Riviera program will have mariachi band performances, an authentic barbecue, cooking classes, destination presentations and other events.

“We’re looking forward to the 2016-17 Mexico cruise season, and with increased sailings and a larger ship we’ll have the opportunity to show more of our guests what makes Mexico such a vibrant destination,” said Orlando Ashford, president of Holland America Line.

“Mexico has it all, and with convenient roundtrip San Diego cruises, we know that these itineraries are going to attract a lot of cruisers looking for a unique warm-weather vacation.”

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Holland America Expands Mexican Riviera Cruises

Holland America Line is adding 13 more cruises to the Mexican Riviera in 2016 and 2017.