We took the Southbound cruise from Wittier to Vancouver. We did a land vacation first and took the train from Denali to Wittier to board the ship. The embarkation process was flawless. A Princess representative came on board the train in Anchorage and checked us all in prior to getting to Wittier. Once we arrived in Wittier, we were able to go straight through to security and board the ship immediately.
We got on board kind of late, so there wasn’t much opportunity to explore before muster drill. After muster, we went back to our cabin and unpacked just what we needed for the night. Then, we headed to the Horizon Court to look for something to eat. Although the buffet area is very large, the selections and the food was just average. It was less than I expected. However, there is plenty of space to sit and it never felt crowded when we ate there, either that night or for any other meal. For the most part, we just ate breakfast there and stopped by for snacks after our excursions. The wait staff was very attentive in bringing drinks and bussing tables.
We had first seating for dinner in the main dining room. We like to eat early, but 5:00 was early, even for us. We had to rush to get there after some excursions. Again, the food was just average. I think that’s the best most of the cruise lines can do these days in order to put out decent food and be cost-effective. I know it was an Alaskan cruise, but I felt like there were too many seafood selections. Of course, had I liked seafood, I might have felt differently. I always found something on the menu, though. My favorite dinner was the short ribs. That meal was delicious. Service was very good. Salvadore and Ngurah, our wait team, were very customer-oriented and engaging. Salvadore was very accommodating with my requests for additional vegetables.
The layout of the cabin is odd, with so much space taken up by the closet. However, it worked out nicely because there was plenty of room for our things. We were glad to have the loveseat for extra seating. The balcony is small but it was fine for our needs. We loved sitting out there, even when it was cold. We had the new mattresses and pillows. They are so soft and comfortable. Our cabin was above the theater, but there was little noise since there weren’t production shows every night. Plus, we were so tired by the end of the day, noise didn’t matter at all. Our steward, Alex, was very attentive.
Gold panning was fun and BBQ lunch was good.