Flew to Los Angeles stayed overnight and joined the Coral Princess on the next day.We had booked an outside cabin with balcony and were not disappointed it was definitely worth the extra cost.Very comfortable cabin with TV,fridge hair dryer and safe,large bed,shower room with ample supply of fluffy towels.Rommel our cabin steward was brilliant,he changed towels twice a day,bed linen was also changed every 2nd day and we always had plenty of toiletries.A nice touch was the bowl of fruit and the nightly chocolates on the pillow.
The food was very good in the Horizon buffet where we took breakfast and lunch but preferred to eat in the Provence Dining Room for dinner (all waiter service).Excellent waiters,good choice of dishes and food well presented.The only negative comment concerns the time of first sitting it was stated as 6.30pm when we booked the cruise but changed to 5.30pm found this rather early.We enjoyed the three formal evenings and everyone looked very smart it was quite a change to get dressed up also nice to have an official photo taken too.Other evenings were classed as smart casual we thought the daily newsletter was a good idea as you knew what was on and it reminded us which evenings were formal.
Choice of entertainment was good two theatres with live shows each night,bands played for dancing,movies under the stars on the horizon deck and a casino.
The cruise itinerary was nicely planned with breaks of 1-2 days between Ports of call.You could pre book any shore excursions before leaving home but we managed to book two trips on board.Some excursions were also available with local taxi or bus at the port on the day.All of the drivers know where passengers want to go so its quite easy to negotiate a price for a city tour etc.One tip don't pay until you get back that way they have to return you to the Port gates.Most days Kenneth Williams a Canadian ex teacher gave an interesting talk on each port with photographs and suggested places of interest to visit.We found this was a great help especially if you had not visited any of the areas before.Of course the highlight of the cruise was the day transit of the Panama Canal and we had wonderful sunshine most of the day.The view from our balcony was just perfect to watch the progress through the Canal and we had the TV on so we could listen to the commentary from the bridge by Kenneth Williams the atmosphere on board was one of great excitement.
We met some very nice people on board the ship and would definitely travel on the Coral Princess again some repeat passengers mentioned that standards had dropped but we couldn't comment as its our first time.