Sail Date: July 2019
We went on this very 1st cruise as a family (2 parents in their 50's & 3 adult children in their 20's in a separate room). I picked this ship and itinerary after hours of researching the best option for us. I knew I really ... Read More
We went on this very 1st cruise as a family (2 parents in their 50's & 3 adult children in their 20's in a separate room). I picked this ship and itinerary after hours of researching the best option for us. I knew I really wanted to be on a smallish ship that could get close to Hubbard Glacier and take us thru Granite Bay (Captain Todd McBain did a fantastic job getting us within 1/4 mile to Hubbard), with full day stops at the ports in Alaska and a balance of enjoyable entertainment for us adults and adult kids. We were not dissappointed. My husband and I especially enjoyed the shows - Encore, Bayou, Cheasa, Comedian, (not magician though as his show was a bit corny) & going to the game shows put on my cruise ship staff. My kids especially enjoyed the games, such as egg drop in the atrium and ping pong contests, trivia, and the other staff led evening shows. The staff was very energetic and our steward, Benjamin Venida, was extremely personable and attentive. We also enjoyed soaking in the hot tub while overlooking the scenic glaciers, watching movies under the stars with blankets they provided for warmth, and my daughters liked reading books in the quiet library. We liked our Anytime Dining experience and the ability to make reservations day of. When we requested seating by the window, we were kindly accommodated and ended up having a regular table (32) which was in the corner by the window. We really enjoyed the lobster and filet mignon especially when we were able to apply our dining credit to the special menu when Sabitini's was booked. We also at in the Bayou Dining rooms which was very nice as well and our waiter was excellent. The food/dessert was generally tasty. The Baked Alaska parade on the last night was fun and we enjoyed hearing the staff sing Happy B-day/Anniversary to guests as well as the taste of the creme brulee - yum! We regularly ate breakfast in the Horizon Buffet which was a great location at the top of the ship with windows surrounding it. The waiters came around asking if we would like beverages. My husband and son ate pizza at the pizzaria. They said the pizza was too hot and the cheese melted quite a bit and it tasted better when it was cold. We also ate lunch at the Grill by the pool area.The seafood chowder was tasty. I felt bad for the poor girl at the ice cream shop who seemed overworked and under appreciated but access to ice cream at anytime was a nice feature. We stayed in an inside stateroom on the Carribe deck (10th floor) in room C517 which I would highly recommend since it is sandwiched between two other stateroom decks. It was quiet, close to muster stations, mid ship so didn't feel much movement. Positivities Loved the enthusiasm of the staff and warm personalities. The atrium was very pretty. Seating near the windows during meal times - lovely. Getting so close to the glaciers. Meeting such friendly guests. Cleanliness. Great shows. I really liked this ship and the open decks, including semi-private one on the Caribbe floor. It never felt really crowded. Everyone was helpful and friendly. Very relaxing and enjoyable experience. Will definetely cruise with Princess again, and specifically Coral due to the size and layout of ship. Some suggestions: We would love to get all the daily Patters (schedules for each day) at the beginning of the cruise instead of day by day so we could plan our dinners (had anytime dining) and entertainment in advance. In addition, we were told in advance that formal nights are sea days, yet were surprised (as were others seated at our table that night) when we learned fairly last minute that the 2nd formal night was the evening we ported in Juneau. My daughter eats a gluten & dairy free diet. The chefs were kind enough to come out to give her recommendations in the dining rooms and she really liked their gluten free bread. Edible options in the Horizon Buffet were not clearly marked. They did not have almond milk that she knew of nor gluten free cereal. We would have liked signage for gluten free and dairy free items and it would be great if they had almond milk and gluten free bread/cereal available. For us, some food, such as eggs and biscuits, were overcooked but they had a good variety of options. My 3 adult kids shared a separate room. The top bunk bed was uncomfortable for my daughter. It was hard for 2 of the 3 to watch tv since the location of the tv was blocked from view though they did not really spend much time in their rooms at all. Perhaps a moveable mount could help. I felt that the pillows were a bit too squishy and my husband and myself in our room and we kept sinking toward the middle of the queen bed though it was generally comfortable. Benjamin Venida was a terrific, personable, and attentive steward. He was cheerful, called us by name, wished us a great day and good evening regularly, and even gave my son a few extra candies which was appreciated. He kept our room very clean. I wrote him a note and wanted to leave a tip and thank him personally, but I didn't seen him the day we disembarked and felt uncomfortable leaving it in my room since the door was ajar. My suggestion: Give thank you notes and tip if you choose when you see your steward; don't wait until the last day. The cruise director (John/aka Mr. Energy) was hilarious. We really enjoyed the staff led gameshows, etc. The big shows were excellent. The comedian was funny, (we would have loved to see his 2nd show but our dinner reservations could not be changed and we didn't know they were going to overlap) but we did not care for the magician show which felt corny. Sales The coupons, sales, and credits were helpful and encouraged me to buy merchandise. I really liked the free gift from Etsy of my pretty silver anchor necklase. A wonderful rememberance of a lovely cruise experience. Photos I wish the photos were less expensive and we could alter the size and have a cheaper package option (less than $150 minimum). They were good quality photos though. Casino We had fun playing Bingo one afternoon. Spa I did not use the spa, but my son did. Wish I could have let him use my credit as it was pricey for his service. Art: I went to the auction, which was fun but went long (it would be great if they could tell you how long it will be since we had to leave early for the wine tasting). My son got art work at a good price but the cost to ship it and time it takes to arrive is a bit pricey and long. Disembark As first time cruisers, this part was confusing to us. The elevators were full and carrying luggage downstairs dangerous. I think I would better plan ahead next time by leaving our large luggage outside our room. Excursions They were wonderful ports. I didn't appreciate that some shops, in particular jewelry shops, had people standing outside trying to convince us to come in and visit. Some ship excursions seemed very rushed - for example, covering too much ground in not enough time, so we booked some excursions on our own. Skagway: We walked off the port and over the creek bridge into town. We saw a man catch a huge fish. We also attended the '98 Show in the Saloon which was fun and ate lunch at the brewery - the beer garden provided excellent views. My daughter did rock climbing/rapelling, while the rest of us took the van up and bike ride down the mountain. A great active scenic option to sitting on a train. Juneau. We bought tickets at the St. Robert's tram (short walk) with a AAA discount at 8am. Were some of the first to board the tram and hike at the top. Definetly hike to the cross and windsock if you have time. Views are spectacular. Afterward, we called a taxi to meet us at the Red Dog Saloon. She drove us to Mendenhall Glacier where we visited the visitor center and walked the paved trail to beautiful Nugget Falls. Our driver on the way back stopped to buy us some lemonade from kids at a stand. Off the clock. They both provided great stories of the culture and of living there as locals. Finally, we ate at the Red Dog Saloon. Had to have the 'Duck Fart' shot which was fun and tasty. Ketchikan: We all had booked excursions in Ketchikan and were very stressed about making it back in time since the time changed and was scheduled to disembark 45 mins. earlier than originally told. This was a tendered location. I wish Ketchikan port stay was longer so it could have been more enjoyable. We walked through town, saw the salmon in the river. My daughters went on the kayak excursion and me - the group canoe and rainforest trip on the lake. (The clam chowder was excellent!) My husband and son went salmon fishing with Baranoff. My husband caught three - son, none. A couple with them gave them their catch and they were all shipped home. We are eating some fillets for dinner tonight. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
My family and I wanted to experience Alaska and Vancouver. We did the 3 day land excursion and seven day cruise on the Coral Princess. Words cannot describe the overall amazing experience we had. It was surreal from the land, the ship, ... Read More
My family and I wanted to experience Alaska and Vancouver. We did the 3 day land excursion and seven day cruise on the Coral Princess. Words cannot describe the overall amazing experience we had. It was surreal from the land, the ship, entertainment and dining perspective. The views Princess afforded us on land at each lodge and during transportation throughout Denali National Park was unsurpassed . We saw Caribou, otters, sealions, bald eagles and glorious whales. The landscape we viewed was majestic. The land and cruise staff was always pleasant and could not do enough to enrich our experience. My father caught a pink salmon on a Princess salmon fishing excursion. A chef on board in our dining room prepared my father’s catch perfectly just for us. The taste and presentation was amazing; a highlight of our trip. The entertainment was culturally diverse and enriched our experience on this cruise. If you have the chance to see Megan Brunning, the soprano on board, her voice is a gift to the world. My teens went to the “Beach House” teen club frequently and enjoyed the many activities planned. They even met some friends from all over the world who they still are in contact with. I could go on and on with moments that exceeded our expectations. Princess gave us wonderful memories to last a lifetime. The land/cruise experience through Princess was so highly organized and it’s attention to detail was beyond exceptional and comes with my highest recommendation. Embarking couldn’t have been more simple. We did the 3 day Denali National park through Princess and took the train with 180 degree views through the glass top train. While on the train to the port in Whittier, a Princess agent did all our checking in process so embarking was a matter of walking right on! Simplest I have ever experienced in a cruise. Our luggage was already in our cabin when we arrived. Disembarking was just as easy, we walked off with our luggage at 745a before anyone else and the taxis were right outside waiting to take us to our hotel in Vancouver. We explored Vancouver on our own over the next 2 days which I highly recommend. Doing it through Princess would probably been easier but the city was easy to navigate using public transportation. Uber does not exist there. Hop off and on again bus is super easy and convenient. My teens said this was their favorite trip and they have traveled extensively through the US and Europe. We would definitely return to Princess in Alaska. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
So many events and shows to keep you busy. Best of all, all the staff were super awesome, friendly, attentive and courteous!! We were treated like royalty throughout the trip!!! This reason alone makes us want to do it again! Thank you ... Read More
So many events and shows to keep you busy. Best of all, all the staff were super awesome, friendly, attentive and courteous!! We were treated like royalty throughout the trip!!! This reason alone makes us want to do it again! Thank you Nino, Mariam and Seon! Everywhere you went on the ship were clean! There’s enough staff to ensure you have everything you needed and more! Food was delicious and plenty. There were so many varieties that anyone with specific food allergies or specific diet can find food to eat! On our ship, besides our “typical” dining room, we had two other restaurant to choose from. We decided to have an Italian dish. Right off the bat, the freshly baked bread dipped in olive oil was to die for! The next 5 course meal was so good that even though I was stuffed, I could not pass it up!! We will definitely cruise again and I will make sure we book another princess cruise!!! Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
I would highly recommend this trip! The cruise staff were excellent! Food outstanding - and plenty of it!! Entertainment was varied - there was something for everyone!! We really enjoyed our excursions - especially the helicopter ride ... Read More
I would highly recommend this trip! The cruise staff were excellent! Food outstanding - and plenty of it!! Entertainment was varied - there was something for everyone!! We really enjoyed our excursions - especially the helicopter ride to the glacier as well as whale watching, crab eating, zip-lining, and whitewater rafting. The exercise classes available were great as well as the Lotus Spa massage, manicure/pedicures. We had a medical emergency and the doctors and nurses were very knowledgable, professional, kind, caring - especially at 1:00 a.m.!! They made all of the difference in the world to our trip! My sister renewed her 25th Anniversary wedding vows with her husband which was a very touching, beautiful night!! We loved the last night eating in the Bayou dinning room where we got to celebrate all of the workers there! We loved that the cruise staff was diverse and from all over the world!!! Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
We had never been to Alaska and found this cruise to be wonderful. All the staff worked very hard to make this a great experience. The ship was a moderate size and somewhat older, but it was hard to tell this, as it was well kept. The food ... Read More
We had never been to Alaska and found this cruise to be wonderful. All the staff worked very hard to make this a great experience. The ship was a moderate size and somewhat older, but it was hard to tell this, as it was well kept. The food was the best of any cruise so far. The entertainment was first class, and not of poor quality as I have experienced on other cruise lines. The two non-disembarked destinations of Glacier Bay, and College Fiord were the highlight and the best experience of any cruise yet. The embarking and disembarking were extremely easy, and made so that it all goes very smoothly. We have decided that we will look for ships of this size rather than the mega ships for our future cruise choices. Choose excursions carefully. most bus tours can't be duplicated off the ship, but the Seaplane rides are available for half the price. We enjoyed this cruise very much. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
The service, the cleanliness, the delicious food, the kindness of crew, the beauty of the ship , everything was so, so pleasant and satisfactory. We choose this cruise because we wanted to see the Hubbard Glacier and took the excursion ... Read More
The service, the cleanliness, the delicious food, the kindness of crew, the beauty of the ship , everything was so, so pleasant and satisfactory. We choose this cruise because we wanted to see the Hubbard Glacier and took the excursion which was wonderful. We had the opportunity to interact with other guests when eating at the Bordeaux restaurant that is very elegant. All the meals there were fabulous and the service pronto and great! The buffet restaurant was very clean and then food was very good with a great service. The amenities offered were numerous and the shows offer at the theater were spectacular, first clase, the actors were passionate and felt deeply what they were doing. There was a soprano with an incredible voice! Coral Princess and it’s crew deserve 5 Stars! We can really recommend this cruise to Alaska that is so beautiful. We really thank the crew that took care of us! Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
This was our first cruise and we had a balcony cabin as we didn't want to miss out on seeing anything. We chose the Coral Princess as it was a slightly smaller ship with less people on board. We are from New Zealand and this was our ... Read More
This was our first cruise and we had a balcony cabin as we didn't want to miss out on seeing anything. We chose the Coral Princess as it was a slightly smaller ship with less people on board. We are from New Zealand and this was our first time in Canada and Alaska. This cruise was absolutely fabulous. The scenery was breathtaking, the food was delicious, the bed was comfortable, the crew were always polite and helpful, the entertainment was great. I couldn't fault Princess Cruises from start to finish. The ports had lovely small towns that you could walk around and just enjoy the places. We did not go on any of the excursions. There is always plenty to do on the ship if you choose to. We went to our first art auction which was 2hrs long but weren't tempted to buy anything. We had 2 formal nights and it was nice to see everyone dressed up in the restaurant and at the theatre on the same night. This cruise exceded our expectations and we can't wait to take another Princess Cruise somewhere. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
Having traveled on Princess before to Alaska I knew I wanted to do it again. The itinerary was perfect. I loved cruising Glacier Bay and seeing it all from my balcony. A balcony cabin is a must for this scenic cruise. I signed up for a ... Read More
Having traveled on Princess before to Alaska I knew I wanted to do it again. The itinerary was perfect. I loved cruising Glacier Bay and seeing it all from my balcony. A balcony cabin is a must for this scenic cruise. I signed up for a balcony glacier photo and got some of the best pictures without having to fight for the rail on the upper decks. I strongly recommend taking the White Pass railway in Skagway. Such a beautiful scenic ride. The cruise director John was the best I have ever had on a cruise. So much fun. Loved the broadway styled shows they had too. The park rangers and guest speakers were very interesting and added to the experience of seeing and learning about Alaska. Embankment and disembarking were very smooth and easy. Food choices were abundant and we enjoyed eating at various places throughout the day. Will definitely being taking Princess again. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
I was a bit reluctant to book another cruise after disastrous cruise few years back but I was hoping that Alaskan cruise would be different and I was absolutely right. First of all the weather was perfect, no rain.The quality of ... Read More
I was a bit reluctant to book another cruise after disastrous cruise few years back but I was hoping that Alaskan cruise would be different and I was absolutely right. First of all the weather was perfect, no rain.The quality of entertainment was very good with many professional performers. All staff memers were very pleasant and helpful. Ship was quite elegant and well appointed; good entertainment and excellent staff just added to the experience. we had almost 3 full days in 3 different Alaskan ports that was great making a nice break from the cruising. My favorite port was Skagway and I definitevly recommend a train excursion following the White pass route. Lovely microbewery in town with excellent selecton of beer was a great experience. Food selection was not exceptional but was good and there was plenty of variety of dishes. Process of embarking and disembarking was fairly easy and problem free. I would definitively recommend this cruise to others. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We just returned from a 7-day cruise in Alaska on the Coral Princess. This was my and my husband’s 1st cruise. Some in our group have cruised multiple times. There were 12 in our group of family and friends. Ages ranged from 31-70. (6 ... Read More
We just returned from a 7-day cruise in Alaska on the Coral Princess. This was my and my husband’s 1st cruise. Some in our group have cruised multiple times. There were 12 in our group of family and friends. Ages ranged from 31-70. (6 couples) Those of us who were first time cruisers were worried about sea sickness; we worried needlessly! This cruise was as smooth as silk. Even our seasoned cruisiteers were impressed with the smooth sailing! Most times I forgot I was even on a ship! We cruised the Inside Passage from Whittier to Vancouver from June 19th-26th. Prior to our cruise we did an independent stay in Anchorage for 3 days touring the city. While in Anchorage we did the Trains/Bears/Iceberg Float Tour with Chugach Adventures and it was so much fun! The glacier float was beyond amazing! The next day while still in Anchorage we explored the beautiful Tony Knowles Trail. On day four of our vacation our ship was leaving from the Whittier Port at 8:30 pm so we decided to plan an excursion prior to embarkation. We chose Phillip’s 26 Glacier Cruise out of Whittier and we were so glad we did!! We booked the 9:30 am train transportation from Anchorage to Whittier through Phillip’s and it dropped us off at the port in Whittier. The Discovery Train collected our luggage when we checked in at the start of the day and delivered it to the Coral Princess for us and the next time we saw our luggage it was in our cabin!!! The Phillip’s boat is located right next to the Princess ship so it was super convienent. The tour lasted from 12:30-5:30 pm and got us back right on time. The glacier cruise was terrific and I would highly recommend it to all. After getting off the boat, we simply took the 3 minute walk to the Coral Princess for our embarkation. Embarkation on the Coral was smooth and seamless and within a short time our group of 12 was on board our ship and ready to roll! We stayed in a balcony mini-suite, room D-603. We loved our room, it was spotless, spacious, and the bed was super comfortable. Our cabin steward Noel made sure we had everything we needed every day. Our towels were replaced 2x daily, and room/bathroom was cleaned spotlessly every day. Our party had 6 rooms in a row and we all agreed Noel was the best! We all loved our balconies too! We were very, very lucky as each day was gloriously warm and sunny! On days when we were not in port, we spent hours and hours enjoying cocktails and snacks on our balconies; although Princess offfered many entertainment options for us to enjoy, it was hard to leave the balcony as nothing could drag us away from the most beautiful views in the world and the warmth of the sun!! I loved my days on the ship as much as I did on my awesome excursions. Hubbard Glacier and Glacier Bay were nothing short of breathtaking and Princess spent an entire day at each, turning the ship several times so that all guests could view each side without leaving their balcony! We saw whales, sea otters, sea lions, all while sitting on our balconies! While in Scagway, our first port day, we booked the “To the Klondike Summit” through Princess. This was a tour in a very comfortable van with a knowledgeable guide that drove us up the parallel path that the train takes to the Klondike. The tour was 1 and 1/2 hours, just long enough to show us the highlights of the area and allow us to take another tour, which we booked independently with Scagway Float Tours. With Scagway Float Tours we first drove the scenic coastline through the Dyea Valley, and then we hiked the first 2 miles of the famous Chilkoot Trail! As a grand finale we floated down the Taiya River. It was a fabulous day! The time at port was lengthy, so we did both tours and were still able to visit the town after our excustions and enjoy a cocktail. The next port day was Juneau, where we chose to book the “Bike and Brew” through Princess. We weren’t disappointed! We took a lovely scenic bike ride to view the Mendenhall Glacier, and the tour gave us time at the Mendenhall Visitor’s Center. We had time to walk the beautiful Nugget Falls Trail to view the most amazing waterfalls!! The tour then brought us back to Merchant’s Wharf, a really cool waterfront bar/restaurant for beer tasting and a fabulous lunch. We ate outside on the deck in the warm sun and watched the sea planes take off and land. The restaurant was located very close to the Coral Princess so it was super convienent. Our 3rd port day was spent in Ketchikan. We chose to do an all day fishing trip with Baranof Fishing Excusions and chartered our own boat and it was fabulous! Trent was our captain/guide and he was super experienced and knew right where to go to catch some fish! After we caught several fish, we brought them back to Baranof’s campsite to eat them for lunch!! The campsite, with it’s roaring campfire, was super cool, and they made us a wonderful lunch and allowed us to explore the seashore on foot. We returned with time to explore the town of Ketchikan a bit before returning to the Coral. We had to be tendered in Ketchikan, but Princess made this effortless and we got to and from the ship with ease. Now for the other basics: breakfast at the main dining room was always great. We are not big on buffet dining but did go there once for lunch and they had several selections and our lunch was really good. We had pizza one day from another resteraunt and it was good too. We chose anytime dining in the main dining room and ate there most nights. Some food was great, some average. It wasn’t gourmet by any means, but staff was attentive and did their best to accommodate requests. Some in our group had dinner at Sabitini’s and said it was fabulous. We visited the different bars on the ship throughout our cruise and they were really nice. The ship was spotless, and although it is an older and smaller ship, that was really part of it’s charm. I never felt crowded, there was always plenty of space to sit and relax around the ship and enjoy our coffee or wine. The wood and decor that adorned the interior of the ship was old-world classy and added to the appeal. Also a plus was disembarkation, which in our case was in Vancouver, and it was surprisingly easy and seamless. We went through customs in a flash, picked up our luggage, and there were taxis’ all lined up and ship staff directed us to a taxi right away. We hopped in our taxi and made it to our hotel in a flash. We spent the last few days of our trip in Vancouver staying on Granville Island. We stayed right on the water at the Granville Island Hotel and it’s a gorgeous place with fantastic views and food. We had drinks and dinner on the waterfront patio and it was so much fun! We toured Vancouver for a few days and loved every minute of it!! This trip was truly the best and I would highly recommend taking this Alaskan cruise on the Coral Princess! Our entire group agrees! The only negative was that the internet for many was it was terribly hard to connect to and our group and others we spoke with found it hard get/stay connected throughout the trip. That said, I was one of the ones that was happy to be unplugged in Alaska! Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
My husband and I, along with my father and his wife wanted to do an Alaskan cruise together. We chose this particular one because 1) it traveled north, we wanted to see the landscape change and the days become longer, 2) we wanted to visit ... Read More
My husband and I, along with my father and his wife wanted to do an Alaskan cruise together. We chose this particular one because 1) it traveled north, we wanted to see the landscape change and the days become longer, 2) we wanted to visit Vancouver prior to our trip, 3) we wanted to travel around the particular date we chose, 4) we wanted a smaller ship (not the Royal) and the Coral had good reviews, 5) the pricing was very good for that ship, on those dates, on that route. At the time of booking Princess was offering a $300 shipboard credit, and the travel agency we booked through offered us an additional shipboard credit, so together we were able to cover our shore excursions, ship gratuities, and still have a bit more left over for extras. The booking through our agency was more time consuming than expected, but I don't have anything else to compare with. In all, the cruise exceeded our expectations. We had a fabulous time with little to no complaint to speak of. The food was amazing and plentiful. My husband and I committed to taking the stairs the entire time on the cruise to try and offset the extra calorie intake. This made for excellent exercise. The entertainment was fabulous. We especially enjoyed Duo Casiopia and Tempo Quatro. The Broadway musical type productions were also top notch. One surprise was bringing Megan Brunning on board at Juno. She is a world renown soprano. My father is 87 and had a great time. He loved the food and entertainment. He could do as much or as little as he chose to do. We were also surprised at how much space the ship seemed to have and how uncrowded we felt. We booked our ship excursions through Princess using our shipboard credit. In Ketchikan we went to the Totems and thought it very interesting. We also did the Lumberjack show. I hated it - it was long, boring, and cheesy, but my husband thought it was great - maybe a guy thing. My dad and his wife had no comment. In Juno we drove out to Mendenhall glacier. Be forewarned that there ir no food or drink at the visitors center other than water from a drinking fountain. Seating is limited to that in the theater or on a padded benches. My dad complained about this as he had to wait the 2 1/2 hours for the return trip. Also, don't expect to get up close and personal to the glacier by foot unless you have 5 hours to hike there. In Skagway we drove up the mountain and that was a good choice because we could stop and get out if we wanted to and snap photos or look at the view. We purposely chose not to take the train as we didn't want to be locked in there for two hours. I do recommend getting off at the ports, but honestly, I enjoyed the ship more than the excursions. A huge surprise were the stop our ship made of Glacier Bay and College Fjord with their magnificent beauty! Read Less
Sail Date: May 2019
My husband and I enjoy cruising and we didn't want to stop after having our beautiful daughter. Alaska was on our short list of cruise destinations and we've heard that Princess is the best cruise line to see Alaska right. We ... Read More
My husband and I enjoy cruising and we didn't want to stop after having our beautiful daughter. Alaska was on our short list of cruise destinations and we've heard that Princess is the best cruise line to see Alaska right. We were not disappointed! Vancouver was an easy city to navigate and made for a stress-free embarkation day. The Coral Princess ship felt spacious and gorgeous; it definitely didn't feel like a small or older ship. We had a balcony cabin (PERFECT for viewing the breathtaking Alaskan mountains, glaciers, whales, etc.) and it was well worth the extra cost over a inside cabin. We had plenty of space to store all our extra baby gear, for the little one to walk around & play, and to get away from napping baby out on the balcony. We were able to do sit down dining EVERY NIGHT. I thought this would be impossible with a teething 12mo old, but our amazing waiter (Carlos de Mexico) made extra effort to make sure our daughter was happy and entertained all evening. Carlos brought out appetizer portions of different meals for baby girl to try, and the chef blended meats & veggies every night so baby girl could have fresh baby puree. Although the buffet was smaller than the larger ships we're used to, it was not lacking in options or deliciousness. Room service also brought Gerber baby food to our room any time baby girl needed an extra snack between meals. Although we weren't able to go to any of the main shows (past baby's bed time), we did catch a couple daytime productions and they were fantastic! The actors, music, and lights were wonderful and even captivated a 1yo for the entire hour. The ports of Ketchikan, Juneau, and Skagway were super fun and offered lots of excursions for all types of groups. We found family-friendly activities, but there are definitely more adventurous options. We loved sailing through Glacier Bay and College Fjord. The ship had park rangers over the intercom narrating our journey, pointing out exciting things to look at/take photos with, and genuinely making the sea days more exciting. The entire family had a wonderful experience and would highly recommend the Coral Princess for your next vacation. The ship is beautiful, the food was delicious, and the staff were beyond amazing. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
We just returned from a wonderful cruise to Alaska. We did the land tour first followed by a cruise. Definitely my preferred order. My group loved the size of the Coral Princess. It could get into the bays and near the Glaciers the ... Read More
We just returned from a wonderful cruise to Alaska. We did the land tour first followed by a cruise. Definitely my preferred order. My group loved the size of the Coral Princess. It could get into the bays and near the Glaciers the larger ships can't get near. The staff was wonderful, so friendly and helpful. Try the margaritas in the Crooners Lounge, they are the BEST! The beds are incredibly comfy! We slept so well. We choose anytime dining and ended up asking for Carlos each night because he was so wonderful. He spoiled us. He had wonderful suggestions and was so kind. (Breakfast in the dining room wasn't as great, so we just ate upstairs.) The friends we traveled with aren't cruisers and even they were impressed. I think we'll all cruise together again! *Apparently several people had respiratory flue issues on the cruise but we washed our hands a lot and were fine. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
We booked our cruise through Costco last year. Costco gave us added extras which were very nice. Prior to the cruise there was 4 day land tour, on your own, which was so very wonderful. We actually liked the land portion more than the ... Read More
We booked our cruise through Costco last year. Costco gave us added extras which were very nice. Prior to the cruise there was 4 day land tour, on your own, which was so very wonderful. We actually liked the land portion more than the cruise, nothing against the cruise however. We were excited about the land portion and absolutely wonderful. We flew into Fairbanks early in the morning. Representatives from Princess were in baggage claim area that led us to the shuttle bus taking us to the beautiful Westmark Hotel. The room was spacious,casual was the hotel itself, and the Red Lantern restaurant inside the hotel had great food. We ate there the 2 nights we were at the hotel and the halibut was so good, I had it both nights. The 2nd night my husband and i shared it (3 good size pieces). We took the Riverboat Discovery Sternwheeler excursion and we highly recommend it. The speaker onboard was very knowledgeable, easy to hear, and he roamed around while speaking. The following day we walked to the Ice Museum located in a renovated movie theater. The cost was minimal, $10 ea and we enjoyed it. Parkas are available to wear since going behind the glass, where the ice sculptures are, is -20 degrees. My husband slid down the slide while I took a video. It was great. The owners were very kind. We then walked to Fountainhead Antique Car Museum. I will say it was a longer walk than we thought so anyone not wanting to walk st least 45 minutes, you may want to call Uber or the like. This museum was not an excursion. My husband googled things to do in Fairbanks prior to our trip (I found the Ice Museum the same way) and the pictures sold him on wanting to see it. The cost was, again, minimal; $10 ea, and we can say it was well worth the walk and cost. The oldest of cars was a 1897 Rochester to the latest car being a 1936 Packard. There is one motorcycle, a Cleveland. With the exception of one vehicle all others are in pristine condition. I never thought I would enjoy seeing cars in a museum but I found myself getting caught up in it and taking lots of pictures. I talked with a very nice woman, Gay, while watching a short movie. She and her husband, Tom, moved to Fairbanks many years prior and enjoy it very much. They were there with their daughter and visiting family. At the end of our times there, which was a few hours, Gay and Tom offered to send took us back to the hotel, which was maybe a 6 minute ride. What wonderful people!! On the 20th of May we were taken by bus to the Princess train going to Denali Wilderness Lodge. The train ride was awesome. Each is a dome car and big windows to see so much scenery. There was a group of people taken downstairs for breakfast. Because we were in the second group, our food was not hot, not really warm either so it was not great. If it were hot I'm sure it would have been good. We sat with another couple at breakfast, who were very nice. We arrived at the Princess Wilderness Lodge at Denali National Park early afternoon. What a great setting and all the buildings for the hotel rooms is very open and has little stores throughout as well as a big main building with 2 levels; food downstairs and chairs, couches, and Princess excursion counter upstairs. The rrom we were in was great; rustic inside and an inside door. On the 21st we took the Tundra Wilderness Tour which was 8 hours by bus. It was wonderful. Our driver, Shawn (not sure if spelling), was a great driver and guide. He has been doing it for 18 years and very knowledgeable. The scenery was amazing, the snow capped mountains were beautiful, the streams and waterfalls were awesome. The high lite was seeing Denali. Nothing can describe the beauty as well as seeing the animals; caribou, Dall sheep, moose, bears, etc. The bus ride to Whittier was good. Unfortunately we cannot recall the drivers name but he was an excellent driver and has lived in Denali for 36 years and driving bus for many years. He talked about the areas went through and was funny. On the 22nd we boarded the ship. We were pleasantly surprised with the theatre shows. The WOW factor watching/listening to the singer's was amazing. We were very happy to see something different than the same shows Princess put on year after year. Thank you for the change. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2019
An Alaskan cruise tour has been on our bucket list forever so when we finally decided to do it we did a lot of research and Princess was always one of the lines mentioned on various boards and by people we knew. After looking at the ... Read More
An Alaskan cruise tour has been on our bucket list forever so when we finally decided to do it we did a lot of research and Princess was always one of the lines mentioned on various boards and by people we knew. After looking at the itineraries available they seemed to offer the most options. We selected 12 days (7 night cruise and 5 night land) and added 2 nights in Vancouver pre-cruise and it was perfect. The biggest question that seemed to keep coming up in the guides was whether to do land first or cruise first and whether to go northbound or southbound. We chose northbound and cruise first and I think that is absolutely the way to go and here is why. You are going to be doing a lot so expect to be busy and tired whether you are on the cruise or land portion. The excursions tended to be earlier on the cruise so several really early mornings. But the main reason is that while Alaska is awesome every where we went, the scenery just keeps getting more and more magnificent as you travel north. While the totem poles were very interesting in Ketchikan and whale watching was great in Juneau, the White Scenic Pass Railroad in Skagway was beautiful and everywhere you looked was a “Wow” or an “Oh My Gosh”. And when we got to the Mt. McKinley Lodge and Denali Wilderness lodge the ability to see Denali was unsurpassed, I think if we had seen Denali and all the animals first and then traveled south we would have not had the sensation of everything building in anticipation of what was next. Favorite excursions were the White Scenic Pass Railroad in Skagway, the Jeep ride at Mt, McKinley lodge, the Natural History tour at Denali and the Riverboat Discovery in Fairbanks. Good excursions were the Totem Bight Park, Lumberjack show, Mendenhall Glacier and Whale Watching in Juneau. Least favorite were the Salmon Bake and Palace Theater show in Fairbanks (total waste of time and money) and the dog sledding in Talkeetna from the Mt, McKinely lodge (would still do a dog sledding excursion but not that one). Dining on the ship and at the Lodges was very good. Dinner offered lots of choices and were well prepared. Everyone in our group except me really enjoyed the lunch at Horizons but I wasn’t crazy about the choices; however, they had nearby options for pizza, burgers, and hot dogs that were really good. Best pizza at sea hands down, Activities on the ship were abundant and varied. Lots of trivia and other games. Entertainment staff was really good...easy to understand and fun. The best part Were three presentations by Shelley Gill, a whale researcher and naturalist who was on the entire cruise and a special presentation by Libby Riddles, the first female Iditarod champion who came on in Juneau. Both ladies were interesting, knowledgeable and their stories were amazing. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
We decided we needed a break and chose to go on a three-day cruise to simply relax. The price was quite reasonable and affordable for almost any budget. We chose the three-day cruise on the Coral Princess departing Los Angeles on Sunday ... Read More
We decided we needed a break and chose to go on a three-day cruise to simply relax. The price was quite reasonable and affordable for almost any budget. We chose the three-day cruise on the Coral Princess departing Los Angeles on Sunday afternoon and docking in Vancouver BC on Wednesday morning. Both ports provided incredibly easy arrival and departure options. The Coral Princess is one of the best ships in the Princess fleet. And it is now our favorite of all the ships we've sailed. It was comfortable, welcoming and warm. The wait and cabin staff were among the best we have ever encountered. The decor was rich and inviting. The Balcony Cabin on the Caribe was comfy. Those Princess beds are the best. You can just snuggle right in. We chose Anytime Dining in the Bordeaux where the menu selections were many. One of the best appetizers on the menu is any of the chilled soups. The Horizon Court food was always fresh with lots of choices. And finally the entertainment in the Princess Theater was high quality, with some of the best singers, dancers and musicians we've ever encountered on any cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2019
Quick 3 day repositioning cruise heading north to Vancouver. Flight in to LAX was perfect since Princess has staff at the baggage pickup area. My flight came in at 9:20 am. Bought transfer to ship at baggage claim from Princess ... Read More
Quick 3 day repositioning cruise heading north to Vancouver. Flight in to LAX was perfect since Princess has staff at the baggage pickup area. My flight came in at 9:20 am. Bought transfer to ship at baggage claim from Princess personal and waited for bus. Our luggage stayed with staff and we were taken directly to ship. On the Coral Princess ship by 11:30 am. Luggage made it onto ship without any problem & was so nice not to deal with it on bus or pier. Beautiful day in LA. Blue sky and able to sit on padded lounge chairs by the indoor pool and watch the seals swimming near the ship. Nice lunch at Horizon buffet which is at the front of the ship. Went to one production show at the Princess Theater/ front of the ship. Enjoyed the special guest singers, Princess singers and band that preformed. Went to a comedy show at the back of the ship, really like that lounge and comedy was nice with little or no profanity. Relaxing Trip. Still like to watch the Yes, No game. Anytime dining was good. For Vancouver I was in walkoff group 2 taking own luggage off. Although we were slightly late to the dock/pier, I was walking off the ship by 7:45 am. Made prior reservation with Quick Shuttle and able to catch the 9 am bus to Seattle without any problem for my flight. This reposition sailing only offered transfers to Vancouver airport. I really liked the size of the Coral Princess and thought it was a pretty ship and like it, would sail on it again. Someone mentioned no seating by the Atrium on this ship, I didn’t really go there much. Didn’t notice any smoke smell from casino which was really nice. Loved that their was always lounge chairs available to use. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
Destination: Panama Canal and it did not disappoint! Very impressed with this cruise. The Coral Princess was our first ship to sail on with Princess a few years ago and it still is one of our favorites. Small enough to enjoy everything, ... Read More
Destination: Panama Canal and it did not disappoint! Very impressed with this cruise. The Coral Princess was our first ship to sail on with Princess a few years ago and it still is one of our favorites. Small enough to enjoy everything, yet large enough to not feel cramped. Love this line! Service is superb in every venue. I don't know how they do it, but everyone remembers your name on these ships. I can't say enough about Club Class dining. Truly a great experience and so worth a few extra dollars. We also enjoy specialty dining once each trip, but really don't need it as the menu in the dining rooms are extensive and varied. From Embarkation to Disembarking the ship, everything about this repositioning cruise was great. Only wish our travel agent with Princess had told us we could continue on to other ports of call. We would have gone on to Vancouver as the ship headed for Alaska. Thanks Princess for making everyone feel so special on your line! Looking forward to our next adventure with Princess! Read Less
Sail Date: April 2019
This was a cruise I have been wanting to do for a while. This was a Retirement cruise for me and to celebrate my 20th Wedding Anniversary (close to our wedding date). I was very impressed with the Captain and his crew in sailing of the ... Read More
This was a cruise I have been wanting to do for a while. This was a Retirement cruise for me and to celebrate my 20th Wedding Anniversary (close to our wedding date). I was very impressed with the Captain and his crew in sailing of the Ship through the Panama Canal. You never knew when we were in port due to the expertise handling of the Captain and Crew. Impressed and thrilled with receiving a certificate for sailing through the Panama Canal. Also I want to Thank Princess Cruise for televising the Easter Mass for people who were not able to attend Church Service due to being on the Sea and did not realize that we would be spending Easter on the Cruise. Easter Service meant a lot to me as a practicing Christian. Thank you for that special event to be aired. Loved the Zumba classed to start off our days when we were at sea. Activities were plenty. Dining was superb. Thanks to all who prepared those heavenly meals and exquisite desserts. Embarkation and Disembarkation went smoothly. Staff was very present and helpful. Would like to do this cruise again. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2019
Always wanted to see the Panama Canai, and do the full cruise through to Vancouver from Ft Lauderdale. A truly amazing experience! GOING THOUGH THE LOCKS-wow-not sure what i was expecting-but it was a very unique experience. This was one ... Read More
Always wanted to see the Panama Canai, and do the full cruise through to Vancouver from Ft Lauderdale. A truly amazing experience! GOING THOUGH THE LOCKS-wow-not sure what i was expecting-but it was a very unique experience. This was one of a few still on bucket list. The staff on this cruise were very friendly and accommodating as needed. Our dining room staff were fantastic, and the food fresh and delicious. This was a cruise to remember-love meeting new people as well. I think Princess did an awesome job of looking after what we required. The excursions we had,were educational, and again all staff informative and helpful.Cartagenha was a little overwhelming with people putting their wears in your face. Overall people very friendly and helpful-trying to meet everyone's expectations. The entertainers on this cruise were awesome-and the cruise directors dealing with everything else going on-they kept everyone very busy. It was an awesome memorable cruise! Read Less
Sail Date: April 2019
This was a destination we’ve wanted to do for awhile. Being from Alberta, Canada we liked that we started in Ft. Lauderdale and sailed through the canal and finishing in Vancouver, BC. From there it was a very short flight home. We ... Read More
This was a destination we’ve wanted to do for awhile. Being from Alberta, Canada we liked that we started in Ft. Lauderdale and sailed through the canal and finishing in Vancouver, BC. From there it was a very short flight home. We were lucky enough to be upgraded to a mini suite in which our room steward, Winston, kept very clean. Although we chose anytime dining, we chose not to do it. Instead, we ate breakfast and lunch in the Horizon Buffet where the food was great (sometimes a little too good), but one thing that bothered me was that various passengers refused to wash their hands even when prompted by a crew member. We had huge, delicious meals at both Sabitinis and Bayou restaurants. I would definitely recommend going to either one. You won’t be disappointed. We booked excursions at all our ports of call but would’ve rather done our own thing on a majority of them. We didn’t find them up to Princess standards like others we’ve done on other ships. A special shoutout to the amazing staff in Crooners. Putu, Parban, and Bo became very good friends and I hope that we will cross paths with them again soon. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
Coral Princess is my kind of ship. The public areas are extensive, comfortable and inviting and there was rarely a crowded feel. We had 8 sea days, and were never bored. Princess had a packed schedule every day and there was always ... Read More
Coral Princess is my kind of ship. The public areas are extensive, comfortable and inviting and there was rarely a crowded feel. We had 8 sea days, and were never bored. Princess had a packed schedule every day and there was always something to do. The food in the main dining room was excellent, varied and beautifully presented. Breakfast in all venues was uninspired but the quality of the pastries, breads and fruit selections was wonderful. Afternoon tea was fabulous! Although I loved the lunch I had eaten in the dining room on the first day, we decided to pass on that and just scavenge at the buffet the rest of the trip (excellent cheeses, breads, sandwiches, salads and shrimp) so we could justify attending the tea. I love the way Princess makes it a point to seat people in groups in the dining room - at every meal you meet and enjoy different people and make new friends. Even when we decided to eat at a table alone, we were so close to our neighbors that it was easy to strike up a conversation - or not, whichever worked best. "Ocean Concierge" is a very fine feature. We logged into the ship's internet, and could see the day's schedule right on our phones. We could tap in and read about the shore excursions we had scheduled, and add daily events to our own personal itinerary. I could "share" an event with my husband, who could then add it to his list. The app also offered texting capability, Although this was of limited usefulness since you didn't know there was a text if the app wasn't open. Still, it made it easier to "find each other" on those busy days. We booked all our shore excursions (and we booked at least one at each port) through Princess and were really glad we did. Two of our excursions were the last to arrive back at the ship, and they arrived after the "all aboard" had sounded. I would have been a nervous wreck if I hadn't known that the Coral would wait. The excursions were generally quite good, the ports were interesting and the organization was superb. We have been on far too many ships where the instructions were to "meet the bus on the pier" and let the devil take the hindmost. Each of our tours started out in the dining room, where we were given our group number, and we were called and escorted off the ship when our group was ready. Specialty dining was a waste. We only did it because it was a gift, but we had been looking forward to a nice, spicy meal at the Bayou. Instead we got a lot of salt and too much meat. It just confirmed my long held belief about specialty dining: We're better off in the main dining room. Everything else was lovely. Common areas were beautifully decorated and all carpets and artwork were attractive and tasteful. What more to say? I would go on the Coral Princess again in a heartbeat. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
We chose this cruise for the 19 days at a reasonable price with lots of relaxing sea days. I liked the idea of off the beaten path ports and going twice through the interesting parts of the canal. I was also interested in trying the Coral ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the 19 days at a reasonable price with lots of relaxing sea days. I liked the idea of off the beaten path ports and going twice through the interesting parts of the canal. I was also interested in trying the Coral Princess because she has a very loyal following. The Coral Princess is indeed a great ship size and layout. The amenities for the ship size were wonderful. Having the theater and Universe show lounge allowed for lots of entertainment and activity options. The 4 pools allowed for uncrowded main pool areas and you could be alone at the splash or aft pool if you wanted. In fact as reputed it is a very uncrowded ship overall. Never a problem getting into dining and just a small amount of advance planning for the shows. Nothing shockingly long or crowded. I was disappointed with the design that has the toilet sewer vacuum outlet over the starboard aft promenade deck. There was also some type of stinky outlet over the starboard bow area. This would be a valid reason I would not choose this ship again. MedallionNet came on board on our cruise and was fantastic! I loved the interactive personalizer and adding the activities I was interested in to my own schedule. I think I did more things this way than when it was just a printed patter. The messaging function was great/useful but really needs a visual indicator on the main screen and or vibrate/noise to let you know someone is trying to contact you. Not having movies on demand in the room was weird in this day and age. Just a couple of channels broadcasting the same shows over and over seemed very old school. The video quality on the TV was surprisingly bad. Must be something wrong with the cables or something. Movies under the stars was fantastic! The good part about bad room TV was it got you out of the cabin more. I found I enjoyed some things I wouldn't have thought to go to normally. The violin duo was fantastic. The Funk comedian was great. As was the ventriloquist. While I enjoyed the shows (sometimes with ear plugs in as they are way too loud) they aren't really my style. Princess seems to always want to pick popular songs and string them together in a production which is kind of boring to me. Silk had a great story with great theatrics but putting the modern, not quite fitting songs in, made it less than great overall. Also way too loud. But the dancing and singing was good across all the shows so I enjoyed myself appreciating what they did offer. As mentioned by others, the balcony cabin showers are shockingly small. I didn't think it would bother me as much as it did. If I were to book this ship again I would book a mini-suite. The upper management and staff was amazingly responsive to requests and feedback. I was actually kind of shocked how good they were. I has several things that needed to be sorted at the beginning of the cruise. One was a bad room vibration in B730 that caused a ridiculous amount of back pain. It was sorted the next day into a mid-ship room with no vibration. A+++ for that response. The second was that the first room had a brand new bed and bedding. So comfortable! The replacement room had an older bed that was not comfortable. That got sorted the next day to a brand new bed and bedding so we were in heaven the rest of the cruise with great bedding. I also had to sort out the gluten free dining. While they have plenty of tasty options on board, getting to them is ridiculously hard work for a cruiser trying to have a relaxing stress free time. I spoke to other gluten free diners and all were pretty unhappy with how Princess handles things. Until Princess gets a gluten free person somewhere in their management chain I don't think things are going to change. The way they are doing things also puts alot of stress on their staff. I got staff eye rolls, sighs, throwing of gloves when changing and alot of icy treatment from head waiters. Apparently the staff hates the way it is handled just as much as the patrons do. The way I handled the eye rolls and facial expressions was to say "Look, I don't like this either". Some how empathizing with them worked and I got better service. I did have a word with a higher up dining person so got a responsive person in the buffet to go to whenever I needed a run down of the gluten free items. This guy was a gem with a good personality but had a regular job to do also so there were often delays in tracking him down. I also had success with the high tea head waiter and the lunch head waiter. At least one of the guys on the grill was fantastic. Maybe more than one because the grill became a great default option for me. Unfortunately there was at least one who didn't know about gluten free and used the same gloves to handle the lettuce as the previous patrons bun. Then he seemed to put the cross contaminate lettuce back to reuse. But maybe he didn't. It looked like he put it back in the under counter fridge. I did get sick after that meal so he also did something else wrong. Ice cream bar was no problem for gluten free although the person manning it often doesn't speak English enough to understand the request, you just have to watch how/where they handle the cup. They didn't handle it at the rim so all was fine even though they also handled cones. I didn't really give the evening dining staff a chance. I had such a bad experience at embarkation luncheon that I waited until the last night for trying dinner. My fault for not plowing through but I was expending enough energy just trying to succeed in the other dining venues that I didn't feel up to tackling the evening main dining issues until the end. The fundamental problem with the dining room is that they say they can make anything but more often then not, you get plain meat, steamed vegetables and steamed potatoes. No sauce or flavoring unless you are very persistent insisting that they only take an order for something that they can actually provide a sauce for and the majority, if not all, the originally intended ingredients for the dish. This took alot of my energy and their energy. They wanted to assure me that, yes madam, we can provide that. But when you press them they can provide a plain piece of meat or fish. They seemed to think that would make me very happy. It does not. As one other gluten free diner mentioned she was feeling very deprived. I suspect she let them bully her into plain dishes or allowed her to think she was getting the dish but in reality a steamed dish came out. Eventually I could end up with a good dish but there was alot of back and forth arguing with the head waiter (always ask for a head waiter) regarding what the dish would actually be and as soon as they admitted it was nothing but plain meat we would move on to the next selection and repeat the process. Some times we had to do this 3 or 4 times until we landed on a dish that could be made as designed or a reasonably close approximation. After a few rounds the lunch head waiter seemed to get it and it was easier. Then the discovery process on the gluten free dessert would begin. Sometimes they just randomly would bring out the chef selection of tapioca pudding or what not so I ordered ice cream also. Basically no effort was made in the main dining room desert area. On the last night I just lucked out that another diner said you can probably get gluten free baked Alaska. He asked his waiter (who was not my waiter) who confirmed you could. Then we had to find my waiter to tell him. I had wanted to ask him but he was busy not coming by our table. You would think it would dawn on them at the beginning of the gluten free ordering wrestling match (for that is what it felt like) that they might want to be ready to tell you what dessert was available if there was one. But no you have to claw it out of them just like the gluten free info at the buffet and the main dining room lunch and dinner ordering. I know this sounds like I am a problem main dining room orderer. And I am. Otherwise the head waiters try to ice you into accepting whatever steamed plate of food comes out knowing that it is often too much trouble to try another steamed plate of food as that is all they will bring unless you go through the process with them. I saw two big problems with the buffet that would cause me to select another cruise line. #1) No gluten free items labeled in the buffet. This was a huge issue. You have to track down a chef, pull them from their job, have them go through item by item what is gluten free and remember what they said about each item. Often they waved a hand that this, this and this was gluten free while pointing to a whole row. So you have to back them up and go through item by item while memorizing the whole buffet. And all this after waiting around in the middle of the buffet (with traffic flowing around you) while someone gets a chef for you which could be either right away or many minutes later. Not relaxing or fun. I did have great luck ordering from the back of the buffet where if something looked likely to be cross contaminated they would go get a dish of it from the back. It did sometimes take a really long time if they had to go into the ship galley to get it. The assigned chef at the buffet did a good job making the asian stir fry/rice bowls/rice noodle dishes out of the back with gluten free soy sauce. You have to ask about it as they didn't admit to having the gluten free soy sauce until the end. But they do and you can get meals prepared with it. #2) Poorly placed items in the buffet. Princess insists on mixing bread products in everywhere. This increased the chance of cross contamination exponentially. My last Celebrity cruise had whole islands of the buffet with no gluten items. The bread products were all located together. Made things much easier! A good point to the buffet was they had wonderful naturally gluten free curries, Indian food, Thai food and food from the Philippines. Some of the best I've ever had. But after 12 days of it for lunch and dinner I was ready for something different. So I moved on to the grill. Surprisingly they were excellent! The one guy I most often got really knew his gluten free stuff. And the burgers and fries were gluten free so I got to enjoy some excellent fries (as long as they were fresh) which is rare to find gluten free. The burgers also became an excellent non-curry based protein that I paired with the excellent cold salads from the buffet. The dessert area always had 1 or 2 labeled gluten free items. The chocolate fountain was also gluten free but not labeled as such. The meringues were also gluten free but also not labeled as such. On days the pastry chef wasn't trying there where horrible cheese cakes and weird consistency puddings. But when he tried there were fantastic options. On days like this get a couple extra and put them in the fridge to make yourself feel better on tapioca pudding/cheesecake days. They main guy behind the counter always got an allergy serving (fresh gloves right from the refrigerator) of the gluten free dessert when asked. But you have to ask. Don't serve yourself from the offerings as they aren't safe. The other place to get safe desserts was at the tea/coffee place on deck 6. The main guy knew a gluten free allergy order so used separate tongs when asked. You have to watch to see who knows what. If if is a substitute person they often reach for the regular tongs and you have to stop them. Just increases the overall food related stress load on you as you need to evaluate and memorize the knowledgeable personnel early in the cruise and then stay vigilant as to who is serving you. It helps to pace yourself and tackle them in stages so as to establish what is safe and what isn't. The gluten free breakfast muffins (you have to ask for them) were laughably horrible. As were the rice flour and water pancakes. Princess needs to order some commercial mix products for these items. What they offered was beyond bad. The gluten free pizza with the mushy rice crust was also a miss. Overall this was a fantastic cruise! The management staff stood out as being very responsive, as were the staff. All requests were addressed in a satisfactory manner. The buffet clean up staff was exceptional. Drink orders were taken and delivered, plates were cleared, staff was personable. I think they were the best overall department in the entire ship. Oddly the front desk staff wasn't very smiley. Somber and slightly confused would be the way I would describe them. It comes off as a play to be unhelpful if possible. The cruise director did a nice job with the activities. The lecturers were unimpressive and annoying with lame jokes. But alot of people seemed to like them. I just didn't go as seeing presentations from lecherous old guys gets old. I thought the entertainment was good. Weird vibe at the tea/coffee venue. Most staff were good but one guy seems on the verge of an emotional breakdown. Actually saw him throw a tea bag at one of the friendly waitresses and was not quite pleasant to order from. Hopefully his contract is up soon and he can decompress a bit. Not alot of smiles on the ship from the crew. Maybe it isn't the done thing to smile and greet the passengers any more? Many more smiles from the passengers who were overall a delightful lot. Amazing how you seem to run into the same people over and over which makes for a more fun cruise. I was very glad we picked this cruise and we had a wonderful time! Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
The cruise on the Coral Princess from March 17- April 5 2019 was fabulous from the time we started the cruise! The crew, staff, and all aboard made you feel like part of their family! By the second day I think most of the crew knew me by ... Read More
The cruise on the Coral Princess from March 17- April 5 2019 was fabulous from the time we started the cruise! The crew, staff, and all aboard made you feel like part of their family! By the second day I think most of the crew knew me by name and called my parents mom and dad! We were greeted by name each nite going into the dining room by name and they arranged it so we didn’t have to call for reservations each morning! They knew we liked a certain waiter and table. My dad is the adventuresome person so he did all the different land tours and came back with many adventures, ( I am disabled and make the choice not to do them, even though a lot of people still do). Fuad Amal’s the people were so extremely friendly and the local market literally right off the ship is so very nice and clean! The local people welcome you by introducing themselves and welcoming you to their little shopping area! It was so pleasant! The Panama Canal, this was my 4th time through, is even more exciting, I really took the time to watch the mules, (five million dollars a piece) as they GUIDE NOT PULL the ship into the locks. Then watch as the ships go up up up!!! It’s really exciting to know you are expierencing a part of history! After the locks we anchored in Gatun Lake where the Coral Princess spent the night and around 11 am the next day we headed back out the canal to the Pacific side again! It was just as thrilling! Each stop we made was wonderful, three stops in Mexico, Costa Rica, Guatemala and we weren’t able to stop in Nicaugua due to high winds and seas, but that just gave us an extra sea day!! The sea days you can be busy with activities 24/7 or do nothing 24/7 and just relax and unwind! That is what makes cruising so wonderful, once you are onboard, it is up to you on how you want your vacation to be! Some people need the constant activity, others like me, love to relax, face a chair towards the ocean and be lucky enough to see the pod of over 15 whales, many turtles, flying fish, and many schools of dolphins! The ocean is filled with many wonders! The Coral Princess has a beautiful library and game room, cigar room, internet rooms, casino, laundry facilities, Movies under the Stars, and movies during the day while you tan, there are areas for children, and playrooms for kids and teens! You can eat eat and eat some more, the old cruise joke is you go on board as a passenger and leave as cargo, I sometimes believe it after the incedible pastries and desserts they have on board. They have a very nice menu in the dining room and they also offer you a choice to pay to have a better cut of a steak, lobster if that is what is sounding good to your appetite that night! Whatever your request I know from expience a Princess staff member will either take care of it or find someone who can do it for you. Visit Maria in Calypso store, she has a heart of gold! If you should run into Rafeal, Thomas ( both from Poland ) and Edwin from Bulgaria )some of the Head waiters from the dining rooms, they are the best!!!!!! Just their smiles and laughter will make you smile!!!!! Happy Cruising!! I was traveling with my parents and yes we will be cruising MANY more times with Princess!!! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
This cruise fit our timeline/desired dates (we chose March) and what we were looking for in a cruise through the Panama Canal. We had read about the size of the ship relative to the number of passengers and it was just right; we never felt ... Read More
This cruise fit our timeline/desired dates (we chose March) and what we were looking for in a cruise through the Panama Canal. We had read about the size of the ship relative to the number of passengers and it was just right; we never felt crowded or squished. There were plenty of activities and good variety to choose from. There were also spots to just sit and read quietly if desired. The quality of entertainment was excellent and the cruise staff made us feel welcome to try something new and not feel awkward about it. We really enjoyed our dining room food and service but the awkward set times of traditional dining (5:15 or 7:30) had us wondering if 'anytime' dining would have been a better choice (but we really liked our regular servers and table company). We chose the early time and ended up missing most of the sunsets unless we skipped our dining room dinner or dessert. The ship's staff and crew were so pleasant and helpful and they are one reason why our overall experience was so wonderful. We booked four Princess shore excursions and feel we received good value for our money and every excursion was smoothly and professionally run. Obviously, there are times when you wish you had a bit more time at one site or another but that is balanced by knowing that your group (we had 2 elderly travellers) would be able to see more without the uncertainty of how much walking or time would be needed to get to one site or another. It pays to research the excursions and choose something appropriate for your group (think of air conditioned coaches, level of exertion, what you really want to see and experience). Read the fine print description that details length of bus ride, number of minutes at each site, distance to walk, number of steps, and also whether US cash or credit cards are accepted (everywhere we went, US cash was accepted). We would look at doing another Princess cruise in the future. Read Less
Coral Princess Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.4
Dining 4.0 4.0
Entertainment 4.0 3.9
Public Rooms 4.0 4.5
Fitness Recreation 4.0 4.1
Family 5.0 4.1
Shore Excursion 3.0 4.0
Enrichment 4.0 3.9
Service 4.0 4.5
Value For Money 4.0 4.0
Rates 4.0 4.2

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