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Regatta Cruise Review
4.5 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
398 Reviews

Comfortable Ship with Great Food & Poor Excursions

Regatta Cruise Review by MollyMcGee

10 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: Apr 2016
  • Destination: the Panama Canal & Central America

I like smaller ships and have always wanted to go through the Panama Canal. A friend found this 16 day cruise that began in Miami and ended up in our home port of San Francisco with dates that worked for us. We found the ship to be very comfortable, the food was excellent and varied, the staff were very friendly and efficient (and represented 57 countries), and the lectures and activities were wonderful.

We were on a waiting list for a veranda cabin but ended up with an ocean view cabin with a large picture window and small sitting area. I found the cabin to be small and the bathroom even smaller. (I've been spoiled by Regent Navigator's cabins with separate tub and shower and walk-in closet.) We had enough storage space for our things - but in a small wardrobe and lots of different little cabinets and drawers.

The shipboard experience really was wonderful, and we met so many interesting people. Most of the travelers were retirement age. (I think we saw only two couples under the age of 50 and no children at all & this really isn't a ship for children.)

The entertainment was very good and varied. Singers/dancers put on 4 great shows, the string quartet also had 2 lovely shows as well as playing in the upper hall at dinner time. There were also two very good pianists - one played in one of the bars and the other did two shows. We didn't see the harpist's shows nor the magician/comedian so can't rate them - other couples' opinions on them were divided between great and ok.

I've reduced the number of stars due to the poor selection of port excursions and their cost. My friend and I have mobility challenges (walk with canes and can't walk long distances) and there were several ports that offered not a single tour option for us. The one we did take was in Costa Rica and was an Eco Mangrove Swamp tour that involved about an hour plus bus ride (air conditioned) to and from the swamp to board the small boats with very uncomfortable seats. The tour guide spoke excellent English and was very knowledgeable about wildlife and birds and shared some of his country's history and challenges with obvious national pride. The boat driver was quite alert and spotted many different crocodiles and animals and birds - he also would reverse and turn the boat so that both sides could see. The base in the swamp had clean restrooms, and offered free and delicious pineapple, bottled water, and Costa Rican beer after the boat tour of the swamp.

We had arranged a private tour in Acapulco, but the captain decided to skip Acapulco due to a shooting and violence in the streets. We were a bit disappointed but would rather be safe and appreciated that the captain made a difficult decision. Instead of Acapulco, the ship stopped at Zihuantenejo-Ixtapa. and had scurried to offer a couple of excursions. Amazingly, there was one suitable for us, but going ashore was by tender and we didn't feel secure enough to try that with the heavy swells so passed.

To sum it up, the ship is older and has smaller cabins, but it is very comfortable. The food is truly outstanding and with a lovely variety. Activities and entertainment on board were great. The excursion offerings were expensive and limited. And the staff were amazingly friendly, funny, and helpful.

MollyMcGee's Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
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Shore Excursions
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Cabin Review

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

Mangrove River Tour

Tour was interesting but the boat seats were so uncomfortable that I couldn't enjoy the experience.

View All 35 Mangrove River Tour Reviews

Flew in the day before and boarded the ship

Key West

On our own, we took the Conch Train to sight see in Old Town Key West.


Had arranged a private tour but skipped this port due to violence.

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