Canadian Empress Cruise Review by ralfeez: Canadian Empress - Canada/New England
Overall Member Rating
Canadian Empress - Canada/New England
While reading this review, keep several facts in mind. 1) My wife and I were by far the youngest of all the passengers (46 and 36). 2) I had never been to this area of the world before, so everything was exciting and new to me. 3) We were accompanied by my in-laws (in their 60s). Good or bad, they were great to hang with and very good sports when the weather was less than perfect. 4) We are not cruise virgins having sailed on many large cruise ships to very exotic ports (Carnival, Royal Caribbean, etc.). Although, we were new to the river cruising club. That said, the cruise was excellent. We were told on the first night that our rooms would expand after six days and they did. We were warned that the food would be more than we could handle, and it was. We thought that we were more of the 'Loner' type, but made friends quickly and effortlessly. The excursions seemed interesting prior to sailing, but they were much more than that.
First, the rooms...can you say petite? Can you More say tiny? Can you imagine a room for two so small that you cannot both get dressed at the same time? I kid you not! We did have the least expensive of the rooms, but the others were not much larger if at all. This is where the old saying comes in, "you don't spend time in your room anyway except to sleep." You will get used to it after a couple of days. No use complaining because the staff understands already and do everything in their power to make it comfortable. Tip: pack very light. There isn't any room for a big bag and you cannot unpack into a closet or dresser. There isn't one!
Second, the food was excellent. All cruise have good food I guess and this is no exception. My only reservation is that every meal is a big hot heavy production. Beautiful, yes. Delicious, absolutely. But sometimes all you want is a turkey sandwich. Ugh...ten pound gain later...back to the treadmill.
Third, everyone on board is retirement age. The average was probably high 60s to low 70s (age not the weather temperature). Of these cruisers, they were all great and will be friends forever.
There were only 39 total cruisers on board our trip. There were 11 staff including the captain and first mate. The ratio was great and people like Ted (shuffleboard master) made everything a joy (sorry had to get in a plug for my buddy).
Overall, I would recommend this cruise line and ship to anyone (even you youngsters...hehehe). We traveled from Quebec City to Kingston which was beautiful. The 1000 islands and the Upper Canada Village were the highlights of the cruise. Tip: stay a couple of nights in Quebec City. It is beautiful, historic, and a great shopping destination. Less
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