This cruise was chosen for the itinerary. DH always had wanted to see Komodo Dragons and I loved the sound of Bali and besides it is hard for us to find a long cruise with all new ports for us. It was a delightful trip. Food was good (except for really bad orange juice) and drinks were freely offered except no diet Sprite in the whole of Asia it seems. We do not drink alcohol but it seemed that the wines were enjoyed and we certainly saw many people who experienced all the drinks on the provided list and none were complaining. Laundry room was helpful but got very crowded at times and that causes some tensions. Loved my room 4 doors from laundry on 7th deck -- I could duck in early or late and not have crowds. We had almost 40 at the meet and greet and that made it hard to put faces and names together because we did not do individual introductions. All senior staff attended the staff and Captain Carl made the party very fun and personal. It took very little time for all the staff to know you and your likes -- small ship cruising does this best. Entertainment was really good with only 6 singers and dancers but they were very entertaining. The entertainment of the local variety was also of high quality. White night was great fun and something different from other cruise lines. AzMazing Evening was a total success according to the others -- I was under the weather and in Dr. Jail for that evening in Manila. I did enjoy the fireworks which I could see from my balcony. This was a perfect cruise for those who like to travel with senior travelers who have been many places and love to talk travel adventures at dinner in the beautiful dining room. There were travelers from Europe, Asia, South, Central and North America and lots of folks from Australia and NZ, All seemed to mix well. A happy cruise as many cruise staff got some time off and got to see their families in Manila. These hard working folks work to make our vacation perfect and it was good to see them so excited. Sailing with Captain Carl is a fun activity in itself -- he does feel at home talking and obviously loves being the master of the ship. I HAD A VERY GOOD TIME. THANKS AZAMARA.
Bali we had 3 days pre cruise with Drivers of Distinction (Dean and Freddy). These guys were fantastic drivers (Bali traffic is truly crazy) and gave plenty of suggestions and let us choose. We did rice terraces and temple on the ocean and so much more on the first day to the north of Ubud. 2nd day we went east and saw several temples and snorkeled off the beach at The Diver's Café GREAT.Komodo- Husband more in love with this stop than I was. Very big lizards indeed! My advice take the short route and you will still see what you came for. (ship tour and all others too as regulated by government)Borneo -- Went on ship tour to see the Orang Utans and the Probescius Monkeys. Both places very crowded but were able to see the animals very well. They are wild animals and show up only if they want to and some did show up to eat and then raced on the roof of the viewing stand and was as curious about us as we them. Puerto Princessa Philipines Cleanest city in Asia -- laws like Singapore for littering etc. Ship's tour to the Underground River. The vendor of this expensive tour was over whelmed by crowd. The whole city turned out to welcome us with bands and dancers and gifts. This is generally only an occasional tour for other Asians kind of tour. The problem was very crowded outrigger boats with little motors and where 8 Vietnamese bodies might fit --large American and Australians did not!!! Then you got into a smaller boat that was poled down the river. Great sight but not comfortable and very hot and long without enough bathrooms or food for lunch provided at for our group 4PM. Oh I forgot to mention just like they did that it is a wet landing and you must enter the boat from knee deep water.Manila: Amazing Evening and tour was enjoyed by others in my party but I was not feeling well. Next day went to the Mall of Asia -- pretty much like a Mall in America with an Asian accent but interesting. The traffic is AWFUL. Let me repeat -- You will not get anywhere fast in Manila!Taronko Gourge in Taiwan. Just a beautiful rocky gorge -- pictures are amazing. Loved this out of the way place. Saw baby goats running down the sheer rock areas and a temple lodged way up the gorge. One of the wonderful places you never heard of and well worth the visit. Okinawa: Got in late and only 4 hour stop. Lots of history here but all are replicas since WWII wiped out everything. We went to the Naha castle and then down to shopping area. OK but not the greatest port on this trip.Osaka: Captain Carl parked under the Ferris Wheel and moved when the satellites were blocked!cold and rainy. We had a private guide (Private Tour Kyoto) and Tarki showed us wonderful things but mostly Kyoto and Nara areas. There is a huge aquarium next to the dock and a small shopping area. Also a castle we chose not to go to. Kyoto with Golden Palace, Silver Palace, 1000 Torii gates, and temples and shrines and deer too numerous to count. This really did deserve the 3 days we gave it and probably more. We spent 3 days in Kyoto and 3 days in Tokyo before flying home from Narita airport. In Tokyo, we used the private guide Discover Japan Tours (Yosuke) and were extremely happy with all our guides.
Cabins are small and the shower curtain attacks but we happen to love the R ships. (This is our 5th cruise on this type of ship over 3 brands). Bed was comfortable as were pillows but bed beginning to slope on side next to bathroom from sitting on the side of the bed. Placement excellent for laundry rooms and very good for elevator. Halls are quiet and elevators fairly fast. Pleasant on the balcony though table is in way of the door.