This is our 5th Princess cruise. Two years ago we cruised with RC to the western caribbean and enjoyed it very much. We chose Princess this time due to the fact that my research showed that Princess sort of "specializes" in Panama & Alaska cruises. We were not disappointed, but lets face it, no cruise line is what they were 15-20 years ago. Panama (through the locks) is not a cheap cruise. This was by far the most expensive cruise we have been on. No $799.00 specials here. This is due to the port charges in Panama. We did learn one thing, I will no longer book excursions with princess. They are far too expensive. One of the nicest tours we had was in Cartagena Columbia (did not reserve any excursion for this port) we were with two other couples and a local took us in an air conditioned van to the walled city, the fortress, a monastery where we held a 3 toed sloth and took pictures, an hour of general sightseeing, shopping etc....all for $15.00/person. Well worth it!
The passing through the canal was nothing short of awesome! Cost Rica was beautiful (we did the tram through the rain-forest.....Princess booking, (overpriced) In Grand Cayman we also did a Princess booking for over $100.00 a piece for two snorkeling stops and one swim with the stingrays. When I got home, the company that took us on this excursion gets $44.00/person.
So......book your excursions on line. Just make sure you get back to the ship on time.
This was our first 10 day cruise and I am convinced that 7 days is not long enough. We had a balcony on RC two years ago and that's the only way to go for the extra money. (unless you can afford a suite)
To wrap it up, the food was OK, main Dining Room menus could have been better. Additionally, the two shows that we saw in the Princess Theater were very good but the entertainment could have been more varied. (They kept repeating shows throughout the cruise)