We chose this cruise ship because it sails along the inside passage in Alaska, and it is the only ship that has the permission to approach glaciers. The weather was not cooperative, yet we still got to see the beauty of Alaska.
In terms of the ship itself. The embarkation and disembarkation was smooth, including all disembarkations for daily visits. The ship is not overly large, which is a blessing. It is also not new, but well maintained and very clean. We traveled with two teenagers, and the accommodations are a bit of challenge. We booked a room with a window and two bunk beds. We were then upgraded to a room with a balcony, but only one bunk bed and a trundle. For two people, this room would have been awesome. Spacious and convenient. However, for four people, it was a bit of a tight squeeze, especially when the trundle was open. We hardly spent any time in our room, and it all worked out well, but for our next cruise we may re-visit the accommodations.
The dining was excellent. We actually liked the buffet, and had breakfast there every day. Great assortment of yummy dishes. We also enjoyed the dinners. The food was delicious and the service precise and friendly. Our kids loved the endless pizza, ice cream and burger bars. We did not eat in the specialty restaurants. There was no need.
We enjoyed all the entertainers on board. Even our teenagers raved about Howley Magic. In general, all entertainers were fabulous. We went to every show every night. The days at sea were also fun and full of activities. We enjoyed the martini and the fruit demonstrations the most. Miranda, the cruise director, is a wonderful presence, and seemingly does not sleep.
The service was lovely, professional and friendly. One exception was the service for the afternoon tea. We went only once because we could not get our server to refill our tea cups or get extra goodies. He was the only cranky person on board, and we did not come back.
The ports were well selected, and we were able to explore each port within the allocated time. We especially enjoyed the salmon hatcheries in Kechikan, the hanging gardens in Juneau and the glaciers.
This was our first cruise with our children, and as mentioned, they are teenagers. We were worried about them being bored. They both told us that it was the best vacation ever. They enjoyed exploring the ship, the food and most of all Alaska itself.
We also enjoyed the ship very much. The promenade deck is a real one and circled the entire ship. It was one of the highlights of the day to walk around and look for whales. The only suggestion is to perhaps hold an early session on good passenger behavior at sea or senior citizens behaving with respect to others. I was amazed at how many elderly passengers felt absolutely no qualms about pushing me and my kids out of the way in the buffet line, or using their canes to shove people in the theater. I understand that the sailing population is an older one, but manners should not be left on shore.
Coral Princess, however, was a truly lovely experience for us all, and we would sail with Princess again.
Great for two people, with a sitting area, a huge closet space and a comfortable bathroom. Tight for four people with two teenagers. Especially when the trundle is open.
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