Royal Princess Cruise Review by cb1968
- Sail Date: September 2017
- Destination: Mediterranean
- Cabin Type: Deluxe Balcony
Embarkation went very smoothly when we arrived at 1 pm and our cabin was all ready for us. The Royal Princess is the largest ship we have cruised on, we have been fortunate to have taken 18 previous cruises prior but nothing this big. I was pleasantly surprised that it didn’t feel over crowded at any time. For a ship this big it only had two pools available but not a lot of our fellow passengers used them so it was never crowded. That might be different on other sailings depending on location and passenger makeup. My wife really liked the buffet organization. She found it flowed much better than on other ships. I can’t comment on that as I try to avoid the buffet. The design of this ship prevents having a wrap around promenade deck. This is something that I missed. There is a small track around the funnels on the 17th deck but it just isn’t a real substitute for a proper promenade.
We were upgraded to cabin E711. It is a deluxe balcony on the Starboard side and is located on the 8th deck, one above the promenade near the rear of the ship. The balcony had an unobstructed view that the cabins a little farther toward the bow didn’t have as the life boats are hung in front of those balconies. The cabin was quiet and near the aft elevators which made it quite convenient. The cabin had a small pull out sofa that was quite useless and uncomfortable to sit on. The rest of the cabin was quite serviceable. The staff was definitely up to Princess standards and the food more than met our expectations. I had nothing to complain about from the dining room. The shows were decent but not overwhelming. There was the Broadway type shows and a couple of performances each by a magician and a ventriloquist. The unexpected highlight for my wife was a talk by Bernie Kopel. He played Doc on the original Love Boat TV show. Afterwards he posed for photos with the passengers, which gave my wife quite the thrill.
Our ten day cruise had seven ports of call. Unfortunately there were a few tender ports and one that needed a water taxi which made it a defacto tender, which always cuts into time on shore. The only port I really was disappointed with was Corfu. It wasn’t the city as we had been to the island before and knew what we wanted to see on this resort island. It was the incredibly stupid and inane way they bottled us up when we were trying to get back to the ship. It was over an hour standing in the sun lined up to have some woman swipe your ship card to open some turnstile. Absolute stupidity. I don’t remember having to go through this inconvenience when I was here five years ago. If I come back to the island on board a cruise ship, I will seriously consider not bothering to get off the ship. Which is a shame as the town of Corfu is a very nice place for a drink at an open air café.
Our cruise ended in Barcelona and if you are able to, spend a few days after the cruise in the city. We weren’t able to do it this time due to obligations at home, but it is well worth it to see this eclectic cosmopolitan city.
As usual Princess gave us a good vacation that just made us want to plan the next one.
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Port & Shore Excursion Reviews
CorfuThe city is quite good but the re-entry into the port needs to be revised. The city bus stops right outside of the port and is a good alternative to taking the ships shuttle which is quite expensive at $16 p.p. return. Walking is also an option.View All 650 Corfu Cruise Port Reviews
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Prunelli GorgesJust a bus tour with no real stops of any interest. Very expensive and not worth the money.View All 18 Prunelli Gorges Reviews
DubrovnikThis is a very interesting walled city, unfortunately it can get very crowded with tourists. Apparently the city has limited how many ships can come in on any given day to try to alleviate the overcrowding but it is still quite the zoo when more than two ships are in port.View All 1,175 Dubrovnik Cruise Port Reviews
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KotorThis is a tender port but we had a fair amount of time in the city. It is very similar to Dubrovnik but feels older and more authentic. I would definitely like to come back again.View All 705 Kotor Cruise Port Reviews
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NaplesIf you have never been to the area, definitely go to see Pompeii or Herculaneum. Naples itself feels a little dirty.View All 1,394 Naples Cruise Port Reviews
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Taormina (Messina)The town of Messina is a very walkable city but if shopping is what you are looking for, consider going down the coast to Taormina.View All 400 Taormina (Messina) Cruise Port Reviews
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ToulonWe docked but at the far end of the harbour. You can walk to the city but it would take a fair bit of time. There is a large water taxi that shuttles passengers across the harbour every half an hour. The line up to get back can be quite long near the end of the day so be prepared.View All 298 Toulon Cruise Port Reviews
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