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Five Stars * * * * * for our 5th cruise with Thomson/Marella and the 2nd time for Pride of Panama. Booked through Sunwing, we flew from Toronto to Montego Bay, just under 4 hours, no time change. Aircraft (737) was a bit cramped but ok for the short flight. Immigration in Jamaica is always a bit unorganized, just take your time, make sure you have a pen. Marella reps were in the terminal to direct us to the buses for transport to the ship. This is about a 30min ride depending on traffic. Driver was entertaining, even explained the meaning of KFC! Boarding the ship was quick, just need to register your credit card, get your cruise cards and tag your baggage. Your baggage once tagged will be taken to the ship and left outside of your cabin. Bunch of locals hanging around wanting to move your luggage looking for tips etc, just ignore them. We were in cabin 6005 near the bow. This is an inside cabin above the entertainment (Venue), we found it to be quiet and all that we needed. I suspect there may be a little more roll/sway near the bow, was not a problem. I always take a(one) Gravol before retiring. Food - Really enjoyed it. Usually ate breakfast and lunch in Islands, dinner in 47. The Dining room(s) is "Any Time Dining", we never had to wait more than a few minutes, when it's busy they have pagers. You have to ask to share a table, we asked and shared every night. Nice to talk to and meet your fellow cruisers and share experiences. If you do not fancy sharing there are more than enough small tables for two. Entertainment - Spectacular! Amazing how 12 people can put on such a wide variety of nightly shows. Also did the backstage tour with Dennis & Emily, interesting and two very nice young entertainers. We are not into sunbathing, inevitable that some folks will be out early reserving there spot. We never had a problem finding a lounge away from the pool area and at times found one near the pool. Lots of places to sit out in the sun or shade. The cruise is all inclusive, we did not observe any alcohol related problems, lines ups etc. We are 1 non and 1 95% non drinker. Ports. We did ship booked tours in Santa Marta, Colon and Puerto Limon. All good except we found the Santa Marta tour interesting but too long, as we prefer ~3hours. Colon was a bus tour on the locks, on on Pacific side, the other on Atlantic side. Puerto Limon was a tour of the Tortuguero Canal, most excellent. Also did out own "walking tours" in Cartagena(cab to town) and Puerto Limon. Leaving. Always sad but inevitable. You have to have your bags packed and outside your room by 2am. You have to vacate your room by 8am. You can leave your hand baggage in Venue and use the rest of the ship. Have breakfast or lunch if time permits. We had to be off by 12 but were called at 11:30 to go to the airport for a 4pm flight. We had booked club MoBay which provide a relaxing soft seat with included drinks and a light lunch.

Pride of Panama 8 - 15 January 2019

Marella Discovery 2 Cruise Review by Bill and Brenda

10 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: January 2019
  • Destination: Caribbean
Five Stars * * * * * for our 5th cruise with Thomson/Marella and the 2nd time for Pride of Panama. Booked through Sunwing, we flew from Toronto to Montego Bay, just under 4 hours, no time change. Aircraft (737) was a bit cramped but ok for the short flight. Immigration in Jamaica is always a bit unorganized, just take your time, make sure you have a pen.

Marella reps were in the terminal to direct us to the buses for transport to the ship. This is about a 30min ride depending on traffic. Driver was entertaining, even explained the meaning of KFC!

Boarding the ship was quick, just need to register your credit card, get your cruise cards and tag your baggage. Your baggage once tagged will be taken to the ship and left outside of your cabin. Bunch of locals hanging around wanting to move your luggage looking for tips etc, just ignore them.

We were in cabin 6005 near the bow. This is an inside cabin above the entertainment (Venue), we found it to be quiet and all that we needed. I suspect there may be a little more roll/sway near the bow, was not a problem. I always take a(one) Gravol before retiring.

Food - Really enjoyed it. Usually ate breakfast and lunch in Islands, dinner in 47. The Dining room(s) is "Any Time Dining", we never had to wait more than a few minutes, when it's busy they have pagers. You have to ask to share a table, we asked and shared every night. Nice to talk to and meet your fellow cruisers and share experiences. If you do not fancy sharing there are more than enough small tables for two.

Entertainment - Spectacular! Amazing how 12 people can put on such a wide variety of nightly shows. Also did the backstage tour with Dennis & Emily, interesting and two very nice young entertainers.

We are not into sunbathing, inevitable that some folks will be out early reserving there spot. We never had a problem finding a lounge away from the pool area and at times found one near the pool. Lots of places to sit out in the sun or shade.

The cruise is all inclusive, we did not observe any alcohol related problems, lines ups etc.

We are 1 non and 1 95% non drinker.

Ports. We did ship booked tours in Santa Marta, Colon and Puerto Limon. All good except we found the Santa Marta tour interesting but too long, as we prefer ~3hours. Colon was a bus tour on the locks, on on Pacific side, the other on Atlantic side. Puerto Limon was a tour of the Tortuguero Canal, most excellent. Also did out own "walking tours" in Cartagena(cab to town) and Puerto Limon.

Leaving. Always sad but inevitable. You have to have your bags packed and outside your room by 2am. You have to vacate your room by 8am. You can leave your hand baggage in Venue and use the rest of the ship. Have breakfast or lunch if time permits. We had to be off by 12 but were called at 11:30 to go to the airport for a 4pm flight. We had booked club MoBay which provide a relaxing soft seat with included drinks and a light lunch.
Bill and Brenda’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Cabin 6005
Suited us. Clean and kept clean. Not a new ship but Marella are obviously keeping the ship in good clean condition.