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This 132-Day Cruise Will Visit 39 Countries on All Seven Continents

by Morgane Croissant Mar 18, 2024

If you wish you were one of the passengers chilling on Royal Caribbean’s nine-month Ultimate World Cruise right now, know that there are other months-long word cruise options available for you to book. In fact, there are currently 35 world cruises scheduled to depart in the next two years, each lasting from 100 days to 200 days, and all with spectacular itineraries. But only one of those world cruises cover all seven continents: Holland America’s 132-day Grand World Voyage.

One of the most ambitious world cruises ever, Holland America’s 132-day Grand World Voyage will loop around the world from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and make 47 port calls in 39 countries, including four days in the Antarctic, its southernmost destination, and a late-night in Oslo, Norway, its northernmost. Highlights from this unique sailing will include a visit to Rapa Nui (Easter Island), and nine overnight port calls in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Papeete, Tahiti; Sydney, Australia; Bali, Indonesia; Singapore; Malé, Maldives; Safaga (Luxor) and Alexandria (Cairo), Egypt; and Lisbon, Portugal.

The 132-day Grand World Voyage will depart on January 4, 2026. Starting price is currently not available.

Around-the-world cruises by Holland America

132-day sailing. Map: Holland America

While this 132-day sailing is undeniably epic, it’s not even Holland America’s longest. Holland America 133-day Pole to Pole cruise, also on board the Volendam, will depart from Fort Lauderdale on January 25, 2025, and visit both the Antarctic and the Arctic, with stops in Greenland, Iceland, and Norway. A sailing that’s similar to Viking’s 87-day Arctic to Antarctica voyage.

We talked with Paul Grigsby, Holland America Line’s vice president for deployment and itinerary planning, to learn more about the cruise line’s 132-day Grand World Voyage, and to understand the appeal that very long cruises to hard-to-reach destinations have on travelers.

This interview has been edited for length and clarity.

Matador: Holland America’s 132-day Grand Voyage is a very impressive trip. How did the idea of creating this particular sailing come about?

Paul Grigsby: Since its inception in 1958, the Grand World Voyage has been one of our most popular sailings. We strive to craft the best and most memorable experience for our guests, which is why we turned to them when creating this particular itinerary. We polled thousands of our most loyal travelers for their feedback, resulting in one of our most researched itineraries to date: a perfect blend of both fan-favorite and dream destinations from our expert team.

When will bookings open to the public for this particular trip?

We expect online bookings to open in May, but travelers can reserve a spot now for the Grand World Voyage by calling 1-877-SAIL HAL (877-724-5425).

Would you say that your clients are particularly interested in taking long cruises? Are you seeing an increase in the preference in long sailings?

Our guests are intrepid travelers and, over the past few years, we’ve seen an increased appetite for longer cruises, including our Grand World Voyages. The desire to explore has led us to introduce our Legendary Voyages, which are sailings that range from 25 to 59 days in length, allowing guests to spend more time immersing themselves in the local culture both onboard and ashore. And this trend has extended to our most popular destinations too, like the Caribbean, resulting in more roundtrip 10+ day cruises in the region.

Would you say that your clients are particularly interested in hard-to-reach destinations like Antarctica?

Antarctica is a bucket list destination for many of our travelers, in addition to Iceland and Greenland, which are all on our 2025 Grand World Voyage: Pole to Pole. The ability to check off multiple hard-to-reach destinations on a single voyage is not only convenient, but when it comes to destinations like Antarctica, Alaska, Greenland, or the Norwegian Fjords, cruising is the best way to experience them.

Is the 132-day Grand Voyage the most elaborate and unique sailing that Holland America offers?

Of course, our Grand World Voyage is something to celebrate and, for some guests, a once-in-a-lifetime experience, but our Legendary Voyages also offer several unique itineraries and opportunities for exploration. A few of these itineraries include the 53-Day “Majestic Japan” Legendary Voyage roundtrip from Seattle this fall, which will explore over a dozen ports in Japan with travels through Alaska’s wildlife-filled scenery, glaciers, and Hawaii’s volcanoes. Next year a new 28-Day “Glaciers & Volcanos: Alaska to Hawaii” Legendary Voyage heads to Alaska and Hawaii, a rare combination of one cruise and two bucket-list destinations for travelers and ‘state collectors.’ In January 2026, guests can sail on the 28-Day “Islands of the South Pacific” Legendary Voyage, undertaking the most in-depth exploration of the region available by cruise ship.

What are Holland America’s most popular sailings?

Alaska remains one of our most sought-after destinations, drawing travelers with its breathtaking beauty and rich experiences. With the most glacier viewing experiences and more ways to see wildlife and wilderness on a shore excursion than any other cruise line, Holland America Line weaves more than 75 years of Alaska expertise into every facet of the experience. Our exclusive cruisetours blend a cruise with an overland adventure, exploring Alaska and the Yukon. One standout is the 28-day Alaska Arctic Circle Solstice aboard Westerdam, where passengers experience the Summer solstice above the Arctic Circle with extended daylight hours.

Besides the destinations and the length of the trip, what makes the 132-day Grand World Voyage so special?

Guests can traverse all seven continents and indulge in the finest entertainment and dining at sea, highlighted by our new global fresh fish program and a popup restaurant by Chef Morimoto all without ever having to unpack a bag. The 2026 Grand World Voyage will be hosted on a smaller ship, allowing for a more intimate onboard experience and opening up unique experiences, such as cruising the Gironde Estuary in France, which larger ships simply cannot access.

What are the most exciting and unique activities and shore excursions that will take place during this sailing?

While aboard Volendam for the 2026 Grand World Voyage, guests can participate in activities like ballroom dance lessons, block parties, and themed dinners. Each destination will feature shore excursions that allow guests to explore in a way of their choosing and better experience local scenery and culture.

Note from the editor: Volendam is one of Holland America’s smaller ship, able to accommodate 1,432 passengers

What part of the journey in the 132-day Grand World Voyage seems to be the one your clients are the most excited about and why?

Antarctica holds undeniable allure for many travelers, making it a heavily anticipated destination, and our world cruises haven’t visited the region for several years. The itinerary also features other notable destinations such as Easter Island and Pitcairn Island, along with overnight calls in enchanting locations including Papeete, Tahiti, Malé in the Maldives, and Alexandria, Egypt.

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