Holland America Line is ushering in the 2010 Europe cruise season with its newest ship, the Signature-class ms Nieuw Amsterdam. It, along with five other mid-sized ships — ms Eurodam, ms Maasdam, ms Prinsendam, ms Noordam and ms Westerdam — will sail 54 cruises and call at 142 ports from Norway to Turkey.

Beginning April 3, the ships will sail to some of Europe’s most treasured sights as well as some lesser-known ports, including 11 maiden calls. With the addition of new itineraries, more roundtrip departures and more overnight stays on both long and short sailings, guests will be better able to capture the spirit of Europe and its multi-faceted cities.

“2010 is an exciting year for us with Nieuw Amsterdam joining our fleet and adding to our breadth of European offerings,” said Richard D. Meadows, CTC, executive vice president, marketing, sales and guest programs for Holland America Line. “With six premium ships sailing throughout Europe and an extensive selection of itineraries, guests can select their dream cruise, whether it’s seven or 35 days.”

Midway through the 2010 season Holland America Line’s newest ship, Nieuw Amsterdam, will make its debut, departing July 4 on a 10-day inaugural Collectors’ Voyage. Nieuw Amsterdam will then sail the popular 12-day Mediterranean Romance, Mediterranean Tapestry and Mediterranean Empires itineraries round-trip Venice, Italy, or between Barcelona, Spain, and Venice, that visit ports throughout Greece, Croatia, Turkey and Italy.

Guests seeking the convenience of a roundtrip itinerary can take advantage of new departures from Rotterdam, the Netherlands and Dover (London), featuring the Baltic, Norwegian Fjords and Northern Europe. Other roundtrip European homeports include: Civitavecchia (Rome) and Venice, Italy; Barcelona, Spain; Piraeus (Athens), Greece; Copenhagen, Denmark; Greenwich (London), England; and Amsterdam, the Netherlands.

Eurodam will begin her Europe season with four 10-day Mediterranean itineraries beginning April 19 followed by seven eight- to 12-day Baltic cruises — including a Scottish Highlands cruise roundtrip from Dover departing June 21. Also sailing Northern Europe is Westerdam with a roundtrip Rotterdam seven-day Fjord Explorer cruise followed by three 12-day Baltic cruises, also roundtrip Rotterdam.

Guests who have less time to travel but are still eager to experience Europe can now enjoy seven- and eight-day cruises. In addition to Nieuw Amsterdam’s inaugural Mediterranean cruise and Westerdam’s Fjord Explorer sailing, guests can take Noordam’s 7-day Mediterranean Glamour voyage roundtrip from Barcelona July 26, followed by a 7-day Riviera Romance cruise roundtrip from Rome August 12.

New itineraries offer unique experiences

Guests who are looking for a more regionalized itinerary will be pleased with the new additions to Holland America Line’s repertoire. Departing August 2, Westerdam sails a 12-day Celtic Legends cruise that features an overnight in South Queensferry (Edinburgh), Scotland. On August 14, Westerdam takes guests on a 12-day Scottish Serenade and spends three days in South Queensferry (Edinburgh). Both cruises offer guests the opportunity to attend the famous Military Tattoo. Noordam’s 10-day Mediterranean Allure cruise departing August 2 features an overnight in Valetta, Malta. And the 12-day Norwegian Fjords & North Cape itinerary on Westerdam showcases spectacular scenic cruising of Geirangerfjord, a crossing of the Arctic Circle and cruising by the North Cape. The Norwegian Fjords & North Cape roundtrip Rotterdam itinerary departs July 26.

Prinsendam returns to Europe with itineraries ranging from 14 to 22 days. Known as the Elegant Explorer, the 793-guest vessel will visit some of the world’s most intriguing sights including a daylight transit through the Kiel Canal. Prinsendam’s visits include overnights in Copenhagen, Denmark; Greenwich (London). England; St. Petersburg, Russia; Bordeaux and Le Havre (Paris), France; Lisbon, Portugal; Barcelona, Spain; and Kuşadasi (Ephesus), Turkey.

For those who wish a blend of North American and European ports without a single international flight, the Maasdam will take guests on a 35-day Voyage of the Vikings sea odyssey departing July 17, roundtrip Boston. The 1,258-guest ship will visit a variety of captivating ports from the north eastern provinces in Canada to Greenland, Iceland, Norway, Denmark, England and the Netherlands, with overnight stays in Amsterdam and Reykjavik.

Throughout the season the six Holland America Line ships will call at 11 maiden ports in Europe, including Bodrum, Turkey; Calvi, Corsica, France; Famagusta, Cyprus; Fort William, Scotland; Heimaey, Iceland; Kotor, Montenegro; Molde, Norway; Monemvassia, Greece; Peel, Isle of Man, United Kingdom; San Antonio and Ibiza, Spain; and Vlissingen (Flushing), the Netherlands.

Guests on board Holland America Line ships are in for a delight in 2010 with overnight stays in 14 most popular European ports: Barcelona, Spain; Bergen, Norway; Bordeaux, France; Copenhagen, Denmark; Greenwich (London), England; Istanbul, Turkey; Kuşadasi (Ephesus), Turkey; Le Havre (Paris), France; Lisbon, Portugal; Reykjavik, Iceland; St. Petersburg, Russia; South Queensferry (Edinburgh), Scotland; Valletta, Malta; and Venice, Italy.

Guests wishing to capitalize on their time abroad may opt to expand their vacation by booking a Collectors’ Voyage. These back-to-back sailings offer two distinct itineraries in which guests can visit up to 17 countries on a 20-day journey. Pre- and post-cruise packages are also available for guests who desire to extend their stays of one, two or three nights on any Europe sailing.