Beware if you are under 70 and somewhat active! If you are looking for a cruise with some night life and fun activities, this is not the cruise for you! We are in our mid to late 40's and found it a real challenge to keep entertained, as did our friends who were in their late 60's and active.
The reviews I read about how much there is to do must have been written by some of the older cruisers. The average age of the passengers on this cruise was 72, that was told to us by an employee of the ship. To me it seemed a bit older. Don't get me wrong, I have done home care for the elderly for years and love to spend time with them, but come on Princess we want some fun on our trip too!!
Lets start with all the activities they talked about:
This is taken right from the Princess Patter daily cruise guide.
knitters and needlework get together. Scrapheap challenge seminar
Line dancing. Secrets to a flat stomach seminar
Ballroom dancing. WII bowling
Mah-Jongg play Detox for health and weight loss seminar
Bridge playing lecture. Book club group
Ukulele class. 50 ways to a better brain seminar
Teeth whitening seminar. How to burn fat faster seminar
How to increase your metabolism seminar. Informal bible study
Arthritis and back pain seminar. Origami
Now afternoon activities......
Bible study. Paper airplane making
Relieving back pain and walking seminar. Passenger choir practice
Ping pong get together. Back pain solutions seminar
Croquet foursome tournament. Rhumba lessons
Bridge play. Jigsaw puzzle gathering
Speedy sudoku challenge. Shuffleboard get together
Wrinkle remedies seminar. How to look 10 years seminar
Travel journal seminar. Wii boxing
Gift wrapping seminar. Bible study
Chinese herbal medicine seminar
Note most of these seminars are a time share sort of gimmick where they want you to purchase products or kits.
They also have bingo.....a sheet with 6 cards on it will cost you $30.00 and they only play 4 games total!
So you want evening entertainment , they have a piano player near the atrium playing show tunes every night, in the bar and the lounge they have a live band, but it's the same one every night. Who want to listen to the same band for 13 nights in a row??? and they were not really top notch bands. Although they did throw in karaoke and princess pop star search contest a few hours a couple of nights.
Movies under the stars sounds great!!!! We were looking forward to that until we saw the movie lineup.
Robot and Frank
Back to the future
Breakfast at Tiffany's
Not that these are bad movies, but maybe something from the past 10 years would be nice to see.
They do have the skywalkers lounge that has a dj every night. But the 5 or 6 times we were there we were pretty much the only people in the place besides the workers. But the rest of the bars on the ship including drink service at the casino closed down around 11 pm. So what is a person to do if they want to stay up until like midnight when they are on vacation???
Dining was ok at best. We chose traditional dining in the formal dining room over the choice of anytime dining. Never seen baked chicken or macaroni and cheese on the menu on any cruise ships dining room menu before. Choices were poor! The tenderloin they did offer a couple of nights was about the size of a hockey puck and a half inch thick....all were uniform size, like the food you would get at a high school cafeteria.
The buffet.....exact same food choices every day for 2 weeks. Breakfast and lunch. And if you ordered orange juice( that was included with breakfast) and it was 2 minutes after breakfast ended....they charged you $2.50. Ice cream cones were free at the ice cream stand but if you want a milk shake, $2.50!!!
They offered several sales on board. But they were set up like rummage sales with tables piled full of odd lot clothing and costume jewelry that they would drag to the dining room every couple of days.
But it was always the same stuff different day.
We were on the ship for Super Bowl Sunday and were happy that they did broadcast it ( although we couldn't get the commercials, not the cruise lines fault) was a beautiful sunny warm day so we staked out our seats early. However they had nothing special going on before or after the game. For 2 hours they played aquarium pictures and elevator music on the screen and put everyone to sleep. Would have been perfect for them to put on a tailgate party or play lively music or even offer beer specials..... But nothing again, the same quietness with people sleeping in the lounge chairs.
They only type of lively party they threw was after our longest day in port. We were to be back on the ship at 10:30 pm to sail at 11, most of the passengers had been sightseeing since 9 am. So coming back exhausted from a long day with another early morning port the next day, that is when they brought the band out by the pool at 10 pm for an hour of dancing drinking. Would have been fun if more then 50 people were lively enough to participate!! Great planning there!!
Walking around the ship was quiet and uneventful. No music or activities going on at the pools, lots of people sleeping in the lounge chairs, atrium and bingo room. And look out for the rascal scooters and walkers they sneak up on you pretty fast.
The ports we visited were beautiful!! Made the trip worth while and the weather was great. ! Made it very hard to get back on the ship. The locals at the shops in the ports called the ship "the Olden Princess" and they were right. Made me think of the "Golden Girls"..... "on Golden Pond".....etc.
I'm happy to see so many senior citizens enjoying cruises.....but Princess should advertise this cruise as such. It was extremely disappointing for the under 60 group that wanted activities that we could enjoy too. They could add something for all age groups to enjoy.
Princess, advertise this as a senior cruise and save us the frustration of finding this out for our selves.