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This was our first trip to Hawaii, so our travel agent suggested we take Pride of America to familiarize ourselves with the state rather than picking just 1 or 2 places to visit. GOOD CALL- This is a terrific introduction to the 50th state and we have some good ideas about future trips based upon our experience. BAD CALL - was this really a cruise? I love cruise vacations for their relaxed pace, but with ports every day, there is really very little cruising and no full cruise days.POTENTIAL UPSIDE - Some ports are overnight, so the dining rooms and entertainment venues are sparsely populated. We planned the trip at the last minute (30 days out) so the prices of suites and balcony rooms was very close. We took the bait and upgraded to a suite. In hind site, this was probably not a good cruise to upgrade to a suite since most of the time is spent in port and the emphasis is on excursions. If you are looking to explore Hawaii, take this cruise. If you are looking for a relaxing cruise, this may not be for you. As a suite guest you also get priority check in and first in line service at other points, such as the dining rooms. You carry a different colored card and the staff recognize them.

Not your typical cruse ship experience

Pride of America Cruise Review by 7960Ken

Trip Details
  • Sail Date: July 2012
  • Destination: Hawaii
  • Cabin Type: Penthouse with Large Balcony
This was our first trip to Hawaii, so our travel agent suggested we take Pride of America to familiarize ourselves with the state rather than picking just 1 or 2 places to visit. GOOD CALL- This is a terrific introduction to the 50th state and we have some good ideas about future trips based upon our experience. BAD CALL - was this really a cruise? I love cruise vacations for their relaxed pace, but with ports every day, there is really very little cruising and no full cruise days.POTENTIAL UPSIDE - Some ports are overnight, so the dining rooms and entertainment venues are sparsely populated.

We planned the trip at the last minute (30 days out) so the prices of suites and balcony rooms was very close. We took the bait and upgraded to a suite. In hind site, this was probably not a good cruise to upgrade to a suite since most of the time is spent in port and the emphasis is on excursions.
If you are looking to explore Hawaii, take this cruise. If you are looking for a relaxing cruise, this may not be for you.

As a suite guest you also get priority check in and first in line service at other points, such as the dining rooms. You carry a different colored card and the staff recognize them.
7960Ken’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Penthouse with Large Balcony
Cabin SE 10512
A nice suite, but everything is dated. I trust the ship is scheduled for dry dock soon. The furniture is showing wear and the bathroom was missing a sliding door for the water closet. The suite comes with nice perks like prompt breakfast service in the room (via butler)and a private dining room for breakfast and lunch. The suite concierge is helpful also. The rooms are huge. There is ample storage. Never any hallway noise. The only time you know you have neighbors is when you are on the balcony.
Deck 13 Inside Cabins, Suite Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

  • Hawaii Volcanoes National Park
    A physical challenge for sure. Hiking for 4 miles does not sound tough, but the inclines, the rough lava surface, and the hike back out turned in to quiet a challenge. Our guide was a nice young man, but not the naturalist I had hoped for. He was more focused on speed than information. We did get an extra stop at the nut factory, but that may have been so he could enjoy the ice cream. We also visited the rain forest and really enjoyed the cooling shower while we took pictures of the scenery and falls. Our time was short at this stop to make up for the nut house, but we probably didn't miss much.
    View All 131 Hawaii Volcanoes National Park Reviews
  • Honolulu
    Walking on the beaches and in the shopping areas of Honolulu is a full schedule for 2 or 3 days. My only regret is that we missed the tour to the north shore. We were told the waves are not too good in July, so we really didn't miss much.
    View All 647 Honolulu Cruise Port Reviews
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  • Helicopter Tour
    Great tour guide with a neat 4 seat helecopter. We spent 60 minutes in the air visiting all parts of the island from the airport, to the coast, to the canyon, to the falls and beyond. As a first helecopter ride, we were both very excited and pleased.
    View All 12,792 Helicopter Tour Reviews
  • Culinary Tour
    A very informative tour of a local coffee farm and a chocolate factory. It is the only place they take the cacao beans from the tree to the wrapped bar. Some really good samples at both places, but the background information was even better.
    View All 10 Culinary Tour Reviews
  • Maui
    You really have to take a tour to the other side of the island to enjoy Maui. We didn't know we were going to dock at an industrial site, or we might have investigated tours more.
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