We took the British Isles cruise on Crown Princess, August, 2019. We had a really good time and enjoyed ourselves.
Ship: Although not the fanciest ship around, the Crown Princess was very clean, had everything we needed and was easy to find our way around.
Embarkation: We boarded in Dublin and were given our medallions and were on board in under two minutes. Excellent.
Stateroom: We had an ocean view, which was very clean (Thank you, Belman) and comfortable. We pre-ordered bottled water which was waiting for us upon arrival. Excellent
Dining: The food in the Horizon Court buffet was quite good, lots of variety and the service was great. The dining room food was hit and miss with some dishes being prepared perfectly and others not so much. We were tired of the menu by the end. The service was excellent.
Shows: I really enjoyed the shows, especially the Irish Dreams show in Dublin port. Good fun and a departure from my everyday life.
Service: This is the one area where Princess shines. The beautiful men and women from around the globe who took care of us are simply the best. They work long hours but somehow manage to do their jobs in the most competent way and do so with professionalism and a SMILE. TOP MARKS for the crew!
Ports: this cruise had an excellent itinerary and I enjoyed the ports very much. Ireland, Scotland and the Normandy coast are stunning.
LOCAL SHORE EXCURSIONS: We took three tours with small, local companies and they were all excellent, at a fraction of the cost of the Princess excursions....Irish Tours Tickets from Belfast, EXCELLENT, Timberbush Tours from Greenock, VERY GOOD and Wow Scotland Tours from Invergordon, SUPER EXCELLENT!
Princess shore excursions were REALLY OVERPRICED and everyone was complaining about this. That having been said, I really enjoyed the excursion to the Canadian WW2 beaches and also the Edinburgh Castle and time on our own.
However, the excursion called 'Best of Cork and Countryside' from Cobb was pretty bad and a terrible waste of money. What happened was that we had to shorten our time in port due to tidal concerns for Dublin the next day. No problem, this happens. The problem is that instead of changing the itinerary, they kept it the same with less time in certain spots. This resulted in 6 minutes at Charles Fort for a photo and 23 minutes in KInsale where the driver had to park a 12-minute walk from the main street which meant that we did not have time to even walk up to the main street to look around and then walk back to the meeting spot. All we had time to do was wait in a long queue for the loo. They should have just skipped this altogether and given us some time in Cork City. It just doesn't make any sense. Next our drive through Cork was basically three turns around a motorway with the guide pointing to a street saying that's where the shopping area is. Useless....
Next we were taken to lunch in a hotel in what looked like an industrial area and were taken in to a big, white, conference-like room which could have been any Best Western Hotel in any American city. No ambiance at all. They did have two guys playing some music and they brought in two kids who danced for us, which was nice but you didn't feel like you were in Ireland at all. The meal was so-so. On top of everything else, we had paid extra to be part of a small group only to have two Princess coaches with 45 people each join us at every stop, no effort was made to stagger the groups. Finally, we were taken to Blarney Castle and this saved the day. The castle and grounds are gorgeous.
Princess offered us a 15% reduction on this tour because it was shortened but even with that, we paid $600 CAD for the two of us for this excursion. But most of all, it robbed us of the opportunity to properly see some of what this area has to offer. Princess needs to take a good look at their shore excursion program and fix wait ails.
We DID have a great trip and for this I am grateful. I will not let one bad excursion colour my experience.
Hey Princess, fix your shore excursion program and all will be well!
Comfortable and clean. Great service by our cabin steward.
Loved Dublin! Epic Emigration Museum and Famine Memorial are so moving.
Excellent Tour, highly recommend.View All undefined undefined Reviews
We took a tour with Timberbush Tours to Stirling Castle, Trossachs and Loch Lomond. Excellent, highly recommend.
The BEST tour of our trip! Super Excellent, HIGHLY recommend.View All undefined undefined Reviews
We took Edinburgh Castle and time on our own. Over-priced but very good all the same.View All 37 Edinburgh Castle Reviews
Excellent excursion to the Juno Centre and Canadian D-day beach. Very moving experience and the Normandy coast is stunning.View All 75 D-Day Beaches Reviews
Good outing, not quite enough time in Salisbury but the stones were worth it. A little over-priced to be sure, but a good day.View All 35 Stonehenge Reviews
A gorgeous, picturesque spot to just walk around the port and visit Castle Cornet. Loved this port.
Blarney Castle and grounds are gorgeous but DO NOT TAKE the excursion called Best of Cork and Countryside from Princess cruises. It is way over-priced and the first part of the day to Kinsale and the Cork City drive are so rushed and incomplete that you will feel cheated. The hotel lunch is bland and the venue is devoid of personality and ambiance. Do yourself a favour and just visit Blarney Castle and then walk around Cobh. This was the worst excursion I have ever taken and it cost a fortune. I DO NOT recommend!