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First things first. The crew and staff on this ship are exemplary. I cannot fault them on anything. Especially our cabin steward - Jerry. That man is a true and pure gem. However, I can't say the same for one young man part of the guest services team - which I'll get to later. That boy needs to learn how to use a tissue and not the back of his hand. Now on to the meat of it. Embarkation and disembarkation went smoothly. We didn't get our medallions ahead of time because we live in Canada and they only ship them to the US. But that wasn't a problem as we had downloaded the app and were "ship ready" before we got there. Although I was annoyed that we got our embarkation email stating we wouldn't be able to get on board until 2:30 pm. When I called to ask if we could be bumped up to the first embarkation group (because I had medicine I needed to take in a clean and sterile-ish environment) - I was told that the earliest anyone could get on board would be 12:30. We arrived for 12:00 to check in, which went very quickly to be fair, only to find out that embarkation had already started at 11:00! We could have been on board 90 minutes sooner which would have equated to being able to get to the Sanctuary to book seating much sooner and not have to get waitlisted. (Read more on the Sanctuary further down). OCEAN MEDALLION: About halfway through the cruise, my medallion wouldn't recognize me as I walked up to the cabin door and would only recognize my husband's medallion even when he was walking about 5 steps behind me. Even when I tapped my medallion on to the screen it would take a while before it would recognize me. I don't like the idea that the medallion is more of a tracker. It's not necessary for anyone to know where I am or where I've been. Why does my name and face need to be plastered on the screens that I've interacted with on board? Why does my name need to appear on my cabin door? I'm sure that violates about a dozen privacy laws - including GDPR. That should be something you should OPT-IN to not have to opt-out of!! I only knew I could opt-out of it when we spoke to some other passengers who shared our privacy concerns and they told us they went to the front desk and asked to have their name removed from their cabin door. Deplorable behaviour on the part of Princess. Don't even get me started on how crap the apps are! Constantly crashing, rarely working right. It even crashed my phone to the point where I couldn't use it and had to delete the app altogether! GUEST ARRIVAL EXPERIENCE: Of all the cruises we've done over the last few years, we've never had to wait more than a couple of hours for our luggage. This time, we didn't get our luggage until almost 7:00 pm and we boarded at lunchtime. Not great. Luggage collection at the terminal was not ideal. Princess should be paying the porters since I'm required by Princess to drop my luggage off at the curbside. That burden should not fall on me financially. Unacceptable. SHIP: I felt that I was deceived by Princess claiming to have fully refurbished this ship. It's blatantly obvious from the moment you step onboard, that has not happened at all. I only noticed one area that had clearly been refurbished (Sanctuary). The ship was obviously retrofitted to be turned into a Medallion Class ship - but if that's what you're claiming is a full refurb - then you need to re-evaluate how you market your ships. Like I said - I felt deceived since simply adding panels all around the ship and outside each cabin to accommodate a system (which let's face it - doesn't work well at all) doesn't constitute a full refurb. The ship is big enough but seriously lacking in activities that don't revolve around quizzes (which we love and attend at every single opportunity) or the like. This ship is very old. Retrofitting it to be a Medallion Class ship doesn't change anything other than adding more grief with a system that rarely worked on our 2 wk trip. They've sullied the ship even further by adding more casino gaming options on the Medallion Class app itself & adding gaming panels throughout the ship. The ship is in a state of disrepair as is evidenced throughout. Eg: the cabins have dated, old furnishings. The mattresses need to be overhauled (i.e. - thrown out and not simply renamed as "luxury soft"). You may be able to pull the wool over the average cruisers eyes (i.e. - octogenarians who don't know any better) - but those of us that are savvy cruisers see your scam coming a mile away. The Spa & dining rooms need massive updates. There are broken tiles all over the spa changing rooms & the dining areas look like they belong in a retirement home - especially the Palm Dining Room. It smells horrid & looks even worse. DINING: Princess is known for their food. Heck - they've been voted as 'Best Dining at Sea' for a number of years. What happened on this ship - I have no idea. This was not the Princess food we were used to. We used the Island Dining Room and found it to be dated decor. The dining room was very clean & the service was exceptional. Wait times were not too long - on average, about 10 min (at the time of evening we were going - between 7:00 - 8:00pm). It was nice to have the option of anytime dining and not be restricted by having to dine at a specific time. The food however was not up to par. Apart from a few meals over the 2 wks, most of the food was not of a good standard. Quality was fine but taste was not. Bland, boring or just not appetizing. We had to return food on several occasions. One evening we were sent to the Palm dining room for dinner and sent back ALL of the food. It tasted atrocious. We ended up eating in the buffet. In the buffet, the crew were always on hand, very polite and cleaned up tables regularly. They always asked if we wanted coffee/tea at breakfast or anything else during lunches. No issues with the crew at all. The ice machines were constantly broken. We had to traipse around the buffet area looking for an ice machine that worked - EVERY SINGLE TIME. Quality of the food was ok. There were some items/recipes that were quite nice, while others should not have been attempted. WAY too many desert options, and not nearly enough healthy options. Total lack of variety in fruit. They even ran out of watermelon about half way through the cruise. You're in the Caribbean - explain to me why the ships stores couldn't arrange for more varied fruit / veg options from the various ports we stopped at? Not nearly enough is done to usher people towards the hand-washing stations. We've cruised with other lines where they won't allow you to pass through to the buffet area if they haven't watched you wash your hands. Not Princess. The open deck food outlets were hit & miss. The ice cream bar needs work. You can't have soft serve ice cream ONLY and call it an ice cream bar. Every other cruise line we've been on has a large variety of free ice cream available in their buffet restaurants (RCCL, NCL, even the horrid ones like MSC and Costa have REAL ice cream available). One day - we went to the ice cream bar to get some ice cream and it was 10:59 am. The attendant wouldn't serve us because "the machines aren't ready yet because we only open at 11:00 am". Seriously? The machines weren't ready at 10:59 when you open at 11:00? The pizzeria though is exceptional. Delicious authentic pizza. One of the best pizza's I've had at sea and on land! BAR SERVICE: The only thing I'll say about the bar service we used was that one evening in Club Fusion (while waiting for a quiz to start), we ordered drinks from the app on our phone. I had a glass of wine (very nice) and my husband ordered Grolsch beer (something he'd been ordering the entire cruise). The waiter comes back & says "we don't have any here". So I told him very politely, to kindly go to whichever bar on board has that beer and get us one. He then changed his story to "we don't have any onboard at all". The exchange went something like this: Me: You have no Grolsch anywhere on board? W: No, I'm sorry. Me: Not one single bottle? W: No ma'am. Sorry. Sometimes this happens. Me: Yes I know. But with beers like Bud or Miller not Grolsch! W: Well, we had a batch and it went bad a few days ago. Husband: Wait - you've been serving me bad beer for days? I just had one yesterday! W: No sir. It's just this one batch. Us: What??? At that point we gave up & ordered a glass of wine. The bar staff at the Crooners Bar were fun and lively. Which is probably why it was always packed. That bar needs to be bigger to accommodate more people. It's probably the best bar on board in my opinion. That's where they should have put some of their so called refurbishment money. ENTERTAINMENT & ONBOARD ACTIVITIES DuVaul and his activity staff are EXCEPTIONAL. DuVaul's talents are wasted on this ship. He had us in stitches all the time! Hilarious antics. They need more game shows like the ones he hosts. He's intensely funny & has a great personality. We couldn't stop laughing. The activities staff work so hard to make everyone's stay pleasant & fun. There just aren't enough activities on board. That's NOT a slight against the CD & his staff, but against the company for not offering more physical activities on board. The Links (apparently a mini-golf course) is laughable. How do you get off calling that a golf course? That's a 10 x 10 space with some holes in it!! Movies under the stars should be renamed to "college football all day long". Pathetic. Production shows were lacking quality. We only went in to see one or two and decided better of it. Just not up to the par that we're used to with Princess. And how do you NOT have shuffleboard? That's the epitome of a cruise ship! Shuffleboard and cruising are synonymous! But I guess that's no surprise since they only have one fully outdoor deck (and I don't mean the higher pool / sports decks). That's where they SHOULD have spent their refurb money. Outdoor areas. Why would you put a smoking area out there on deck 7 forcing those of us who want to have a nice walk around the deck to have to inhale that garbage? It's 2020 - get with the program. Ban smoking across the fleet! PORT & SHORE EXCURSIONS Don't even get me started on the destination presentations given by Mrs. May (can't remember her first name). They were a pathetically lame excuse for a port lecture. Total joke. She got most of the info wrong, was grossly unqualified for the job and immensely inaccurate most of the time regarding historical 'facts' about the ports and general port information. I kept wanting to scream out at her that she was wrong every time she opened her mouth! During her talks she kept constantly saying "I don't know what excursions they have for this port - I don't work for the excursions team". What in the actual what? You can liaise with them and with the port authorities and the port tourism offices to get a better understanding of how things change since the last time you were there. The amount of times she said things like "I don't know if this is still valid because I've not been to this port in over 2 years" was extraordinary. There wasn't a single thing she said on those port talks that I didn't already know from looking at the internet before we set sail. Unfortunately, Princess didn't do well on the itinerary when they were trying to figure out how to have a 2 week cruise over Christmas and New Year. They should have accounted for those ports that were visited on Christmas Day and Boxing Day. Clearly the team that plans the itineraries didn't do their due diligence and research to find out what services and attractions would be open in those two ports that were affected by Christmas Day and Boxing Day. Unfortunately, we were unable to see anything of any value in those two ports - especially Barbados - since EVERYTHING was closed. They failed miserably on those two ports. Princess should look into extending stays in many of the ports. Antigua should have been longer. It's such a beautiful island and needs much more time to explore. Same for St. Kitts. Curacao was EXCELLENT because we had an actual FULL day / evening there. Arrived just before 08:00 am and didn't leave until 10:00 pm. That was perfect. ONBOARD SHOPPING BOUTIQUE Why would you not stock essentials in the boutiques? Things that are practical that people might either have forgotten, or damaged while on board? Practical things like belts, stockings, even lingerie! Those are the kinds of things that would make a difference in someone's vacation. Even things like evening shoes for both men and women. My husband ruined one of the heels on his shoes and had you offered dress shoes in your boutique, he would have bought a pair. As it turned out his sneakers were damaged about 1/3 of the way into the cruise and he ended up buying a pair of Sketchers that the boutique sold. THAT'S practical stuff. Not pointless $500 + outfits! We all look forward to the sales at the end of a cruise. It's a given that there's going to be mostly crap they're trying to offload, but you also get some really good deals on jewellery, watches, clothing, etc. Oh no - not Princess. Couldn't possibly. EVERY cruise line does this. They put out the more popular items (not just t-shirts) for sale and people snap them up! Learn from other lines Princess - learn! LOTUS SPA & SALON: My only comment here is regarding the actual physical spa itself. It needs refurbishment. Especially the changing rooms. We used them all the time and in the women's changing area, one of the two bathrooms was CONSTANTLY closed for repair. The toilet was leaking regularly and had to be serviced ALL the time. They spent how many millions supposedly refurbishing the ship (which we all know means nothing) but clearly didn't spend it in areas that matter. The tiles in the bathroom (inside the changing rooms) were all busted. I only used the Salon for one service (pedicure) and that was very nice. My technician was lovely, personable and knew exactly what she was doing - very high quality service on her part. CASINO: Oh wow. What a waste. Tightest slots at sea is what they SHOULD rename it to. We're not heavy gamblers but we always walk away with more than what we spend in casinos at sea. Not Princess. She just gobbles up your cash and doesn't give you any back. I've learned my lesson where Princess casinos are concerned. Never again. The amount of gambling terminals spread throughout the ship and their availability on the Medallion app is deplorable. That's just another way for Princess to get more money from people. They should be encouraging other activities - not just gambling.

Princess demoted to court jester

Caribbean Princess Cruise Review by kookie72

7 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: December 2019
  • Destination: Caribbean
  • Cabin Type: Balcony
First things first. The crew and staff on this ship are exemplary. I cannot fault them on anything. Especially our cabin steward - Jerry. That man is a true and pure gem. However, I can't say the same for one young man part of the guest services team - which I'll get to later. That boy needs to learn how to use a tissue and not the back of his hand.

Now on to the meat of it. Embarkation and disembarkation went smoothly. We didn't get our medallions ahead of time because we live in Canada and they only ship them to the US. But that wasn't a problem as we had downloaded the app and were "ship ready" before we got there. Although I was annoyed that we got our embarkation email stating we wouldn't be able to get on board until 2:30 pm. When I called to ask if we could be bumped up to the first embarkation group (because I had medicine I needed to take in a clean and sterile-ish environment) - I was told that the earliest anyone could get on board would be 12:30. We arrived for 12:00 to check in, which went very quickly to be fair, only to find out that embarkation had already started at 11:00! We could have been on board 90 minutes sooner which would have equated to being able to get to the Sanctuary to book seating much sooner and not have to get waitlisted. (Read more on the Sanctuary further down).

OCEAN MEDALLION:

About halfway through the cruise, my medallion wouldn't recognize me as I walked up to the cabin door and would only recognize my husband's medallion even when he was walking about 5 steps behind me. Even when I tapped my medallion on to the screen it would take a while before it would recognize me.

I don't like the idea that the medallion is more of a tracker. It's not necessary for anyone to know where I am or where I've been. Why does my name and face need to be plastered on the screens that I've interacted with on board? Why does my name need to appear on my cabin door? I'm sure that violates about a dozen privacy laws - including GDPR. That should be something you should OPT-IN to not have to opt-out of!! I only knew I could opt-out of it when we spoke to some other passengers who shared our privacy concerns and they told us they went to the front desk and asked to have their name removed from their cabin door. Deplorable behaviour on the part of Princess.

Don't even get me started on how crap the apps are! Constantly crashing, rarely working right. It even crashed my phone to the point where I couldn't use it and had to delete the app altogether!

GUEST ARRIVAL EXPERIENCE:

Of all the cruises we've done over the last few years, we've never had to wait more than a couple of hours for our luggage. This time, we didn't get our luggage until almost 7:00 pm and we boarded at lunchtime. Not great. Luggage collection at the terminal was not ideal. Princess should be paying the porters since I'm required by Princess to drop my luggage off at the curbside. That burden should not fall on me financially. Unacceptable.

SHIP:

I felt that I was deceived by Princess claiming to have fully refurbished this ship. It's blatantly obvious from the moment you step onboard, that has not happened at all. I only noticed one area that had clearly been refurbished (Sanctuary). The ship was obviously retrofitted to be turned into a Medallion Class ship - but if that's what you're claiming is a full refurb - then you need to re-evaluate how you market your ships. Like I said - I felt deceived since simply adding panels all around the ship and outside each cabin to accommodate a system (which let's face it - doesn't work well at all) doesn't constitute a full refurb. The ship is big enough but seriously lacking in activities that don't revolve around quizzes (which we love and attend at every single opportunity) or the like.

This ship is very old. Retrofitting it to be a Medallion Class ship doesn't change anything other than adding more grief with a system that rarely worked on our 2 wk trip. They've sullied the ship even further by adding more casino gaming options on the Medallion Class app itself & adding gaming panels throughout the ship.

The ship is in a state of disrepair as is evidenced throughout. Eg: the cabins have dated, old furnishings. The mattresses need to be overhauled (i.e. - thrown out and not simply renamed as "luxury soft"). You may be able to pull the wool over the average cruisers eyes (i.e. - octogenarians who don't know any better) - but those of us that are savvy cruisers see your scam coming a mile away. The Spa & dining rooms need massive updates. There are broken tiles all over the spa changing rooms & the dining areas look like they belong in a retirement home - especially the Palm Dining Room. It smells horrid & looks even worse.

DINING:

Princess is known for their food. Heck - they've been voted as 'Best Dining at Sea' for a number of years. What happened on this ship - I have no idea. This was not the Princess food we were used to. We used the Island Dining Room and found it to be dated decor. The dining room was very clean & the service was exceptional. Wait times were not too long - on average, about 10 min (at the time of evening we were going - between 7:00 - 8:00pm). It was nice to have the option of anytime dining and not be restricted by having to dine at a specific time. The food however was not up to par. Apart from a few meals over the 2 wks, most of the food was not of a good standard. Quality was fine but taste was not. Bland, boring or just not appetizing. We had to return food on several occasions. One evening we were sent to the Palm dining room for dinner and sent back ALL of the food. It tasted atrocious. We ended up eating in the buffet.

In the buffet, the crew were always on hand, very polite and cleaned up tables regularly. They always asked if we wanted coffee/tea at breakfast or anything else during lunches. No issues with the crew at all.

The ice machines were constantly broken. We had to traipse around the buffet area looking for an ice machine that worked - EVERY SINGLE TIME. Quality of the food was ok. There were some items/recipes that were quite nice, while others should not have been attempted. WAY too many desert options, and not nearly enough healthy options. Total lack of variety in fruit. They even ran out of watermelon about half way through the cruise. You're in the Caribbean - explain to me why the ships stores couldn't arrange for more varied fruit / veg options from the various ports we stopped at?

Not nearly enough is done to usher people towards the hand-washing stations. We've cruised with other lines where they won't allow you to pass through to the buffet area if they haven't watched you wash your hands. Not Princess.

The open deck food outlets were hit & miss. The ice cream bar needs work. You can't have soft serve ice cream ONLY and call it an ice cream bar. Every other cruise line we've been on has a large variety of free ice cream available in their buffet restaurants (RCCL, NCL, even the horrid ones like MSC and Costa have REAL ice cream available). One day - we went to the ice cream bar to get some ice cream and it was 10:59 am. The attendant wouldn't serve us because "the machines aren't ready yet because we only open at 11:00 am". Seriously? The machines weren't ready at 10:59 when you open at 11:00?

The pizzeria though is exceptional. Delicious authentic pizza. One of the best pizza's I've had at sea and on land!

BAR SERVICE:

The only thing I'll say about the bar service we used was that one evening in Club Fusion (while waiting for a quiz to start), we ordered drinks from the app on our phone. I had a glass of wine (very nice) and my husband ordered Grolsch beer (something he'd been ordering the entire cruise). The waiter comes back & says "we don't have any here". So I told him very politely, to kindly go to whichever bar on board has that beer and get us one. He then changed his story to "we don't have any onboard at all". The exchange went something like this:

Me: You have no Grolsch anywhere on board?

W: No, I'm sorry.

Me: Not one single bottle?

W: No ma'am. Sorry. Sometimes this happens.

Me: Yes I know. But with beers like Bud or Miller not Grolsch!

W: Well, we had a batch and it went bad a few days ago.

Husband: Wait - you've been serving me bad beer for days? I just had one yesterday!

W: No sir. It's just this one batch.

Us: What???

At that point we gave up & ordered a glass of wine.

The bar staff at the Crooners Bar were fun and lively. Which is probably why it was always packed. That bar needs to be bigger to accommodate more people. It's probably the best bar on board in my opinion. That's where they should have put some of their so called refurbishment money.

ENTERTAINMENT & ONBOARD ACTIVITIES

DuVaul and his activity staff are EXCEPTIONAL. DuVaul's talents are wasted on this ship. He had us in stitches all the time! Hilarious antics. They need more game shows like the ones he hosts. He's intensely funny & has a great personality. We couldn't stop laughing. The activities staff work so hard to make everyone's stay pleasant & fun. There just aren't enough activities on board. That's NOT a slight against the CD & his staff, but against the company for not offering more physical activities on board.

The Links (apparently a mini-golf course) is laughable. How do you get off calling that a golf course? That's a 10 x 10 space with some holes in it!!

Movies under the stars should be renamed to "college football all day long". Pathetic.

Production shows were lacking quality. We only went in to see one or two and decided better of it. Just not up to the par that we're used to with Princess.

And how do you NOT have shuffleboard? That's the epitome of a cruise ship! Shuffleboard and cruising are synonymous! But I guess that's no surprise since they only have one fully outdoor deck (and I don't mean the higher pool / sports decks). That's where they SHOULD have spent their refurb money. Outdoor areas. Why would you put a smoking area out there on deck 7 forcing those of us who want to have a nice walk around the deck to have to inhale that garbage? It's 2020 - get with the program. Ban smoking across the fleet!

PORT & SHORE EXCURSIONS

Don't even get me started on the destination presentations given by Mrs. May (can't remember her first name). They were a pathetically lame excuse for a port lecture. Total joke. She got most of the info wrong, was grossly unqualified for the job and immensely inaccurate most of the time regarding historical 'facts' about the ports and general port information. I kept wanting to scream out at her that she was wrong every time she opened her mouth! During her talks she kept constantly saying "I don't know what excursions they have for this port - I don't work for the excursions team". What in the actual what? You can liaise with them and with the port authorities and the port tourism offices to get a better understanding of how things change since the last time you were there. The amount of times she said things like "I don't know if this is still valid because I've not been to this port in over 2 years" was extraordinary. There wasn't a single thing she said on those port talks that I didn't already know from looking at the internet before we set sail.

Unfortunately, Princess didn't do well on the itinerary when they were trying to figure out how to have a 2 week cruise over Christmas and New Year. They should have accounted for those ports that were visited on Christmas Day and Boxing Day. Clearly the team that plans the itineraries didn't do their due diligence and research to find out what services and attractions would be open in those two ports that were affected by Christmas Day and Boxing Day. Unfortunately, we were unable to see anything of any value in those two ports - especially Barbados - since EVERYTHING was closed. They failed miserably on those two ports.

Princess should look into extending stays in many of the ports. Antigua should have been longer. It's such a beautiful island and needs much more time to explore. Same for St. Kitts. Curacao was EXCELLENT because we had an actual FULL day / evening there. Arrived just before 08:00 am and didn't leave until 10:00 pm. That was perfect.


ONBOARD SHOPPING BOUTIQUE

Why would you not stock essentials in the boutiques? Things that are practical that people might either have forgotten, or damaged while on board? Practical things like belts, stockings, even lingerie! Those are the kinds of things that would make a difference in someone's vacation. Even things like evening shoes for both men and women. My husband ruined one of the heels on his shoes and had you offered dress shoes in your boutique, he would have bought a pair. As it turned out his sneakers were damaged about 1/3 of the way into the cruise and he ended up buying a pair of Sketchers that the boutique sold. THAT'S practical stuff. Not pointless $500 + outfits!

We all look forward to the sales at the end of a cruise. It's a given that there's going to be mostly crap they're trying to offload, but you also get some really good deals on jewellery, watches, clothing, etc. Oh no - not Princess. Couldn't possibly. EVERY cruise line does this. They put out the more popular items (not just t-shirts) for sale and people snap them up! Learn from other lines Princess - learn!

LOTUS SPA & SALON:

My only comment here is regarding the actual physical spa itself. It needs refurbishment. Especially the changing rooms. We used them all the time and in the women's changing area, one of the two bathrooms was CONSTANTLY closed for repair. The toilet was leaking regularly and had to be serviced ALL the time. They spent how many millions supposedly refurbishing the ship (which we all know means nothing) but clearly didn't spend it in areas that matter. The tiles in the bathroom (inside the changing rooms) were all busted.

I only used the Salon for one service (pedicure) and that was very nice. My technician was lovely, personable and knew exactly what she was doing - very high quality service on her part.

CASINO:

Oh wow. What a waste. Tightest slots at sea is what they SHOULD rename it to. We're not heavy gamblers but we always walk away with more than what we spend in casinos at sea. Not Princess. She just gobbles up your cash and doesn't give you any back. I've learned my lesson where Princess casinos are concerned. Never again.

The amount of gambling terminals spread throughout the ship and their availability on the Medallion app is deplorable. That's just another way for Princess to get more money from people. They should be encouraging other activities - not just gambling.
kookie72’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Balcony
Cabin BD
Our steward - Jerry - was PHENOMENAL!!! He took exceptional care of us the entire cruise & ensured we had everything we needed. Our cabin was always clean and tidy. He is an extraordinary individual who clearly takes pride in his work. Always attentive, smiling, happy & just joyful. Princess should promote him.

The bed was deplorable. We had to have the mattress changed out on day 1 because when I sat down on it, I sank to the bottom (bed frame). I'm not a heavy woman at all. I should not have sunk down to the bottom. For Princess to call them "luxury beds" is laughable. Don't use old mattresses that should have been retired years ago and rebrand them as "luxury beds" because they're so soft they sink to the floor. Who do they think they're fooling?

The stateroom felt like it had the same decor as the day it first set sail in 2004. There has been no refurbishment of cabins - at least none that we saw. Perhaps they refurbished the suites but they definitely didn't touch any of the balcony cabins.
Aloha Deck Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

  • Antigua
    If I could live here - I would. The water, the sand, the people! Oh my goodness and the food! I love Antigua!!! We hired a private taxi and he took us ALL over the island, from down south at Nelson's dockyard all the way through the rainforest and back again. What an amazing day! I wouldn't recommend any of the excursions offered through Princess though. We had an excellent time using a local private taxi guide. It was just us - no others with us. It cost us $140 for him to take us around the island for about 4 hours.
    View All 1,584 Antigua Cruise Port Reviews
    View Cruise Critic's Antigua Cruise Port Review
  • Aruba
    Another bucket list place that did not disappoint. Such a beautiful island. I just wish we had more time to see it. We tried to rent a car but we left it too late and there were none left. Not to mention that unless you get it from the airport, you run the risk of no one being there at the port office when you want to return it - island time and all.

    We spent several hours on one of the beaches (about 20 min away) - can't remember the name of it. Typical resort beach - but that's what we wanted on that particular day. Sand so white and water so blue and warm - just gorgeous.
    View All 1,691 Aruba Cruise Port Reviews
    View Cruise Critic's Aruba Cruise Port Review
  • Barbados
    Again - nothing was open because we were here on boxing day. And being a British overseas territory, they celebrate boxing day. We walked around town a bit but since everything was closed there wasn't anything to see. We had wanted to do the Mount Gay rum tour that was on offer from the excursions desk but when we got on board the ship and went to talk to them about it we noticed it wasn't there. They said they had to remove it because they didn't realise the distillery wouldn't be open. Seriously? That's just poor planning on Princess' part.
    View All 1,570 Barbados Cruise Port Reviews
    View Cruise Critic's Barbados Cruise Port Review
  • Curacao
    One of my favourites! Highly recommend that you hire a car from Advance Car Rental (www.advancecarrentalcuracao.com). Celestino is a marvel! He managed to get us a car at the last minute so we could drive ourselves around the island. And we did! We saw so much of the island it was extraordinary. What a beautiful country! I might have to retire there. The beaches and state parks were an awesome wonder. Just go off the beaten path - don't follow all the crowds and you'll find loads of gorgeous little coves and unspoilt quiet beaches to hang out in. Best seen with a car - for sure.
    View All 1,285 Curacao Cruise Port Reviews
    View Cruise Critic's Curacao Cruise Port Review
  • Martinique
    I have a new found love for bananas. But only THESE bananas from Martinique. It's a shame they only export them to France though because they're the tastiest bananas I've ever had. And I'm not a huge banana fan. The tour was lovely as we were taken around the plantation via a little train. The guides showed us everything about the process from planting, growing, harvesting, to production. I never knew how much work went into bananas! At the end we got to taste some of the products they had made from bananas. There's banana jam (yummy - bought a jar), banana chips, and even banana wine! Who knew you could have banana wine??? That was tasty. Highly recommend this tour!
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  • Rum Distillery
    What an extraordinary excursion! It was fantastic! We loved it. The guide was so knowledgeable and friendly. She knew everything about the distillery and the process. The rum tasting at the end was quite something. So many different rums to choose from! Such a variety. We saw some people misbehaving in there and the guide handled herself very professionally. Who gets upset at having to wait a few minutes to get a glass of free rum - of YOUR choosing - MULTIPLE times? You're on vacation! Enjoy yourself!
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  • Port of Spain (Trinidad)
    Didn't enjoy Trinidad at all unfortunately. Shame we didn't get a chance to go over to Tobago. We walked around town - almost died in the heat! We did go to the museum - which is small but carries a lot of really interesting history. Highly recommend that. And it's free!
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  • St. Kitts (Port Zante)
    Unfortunately, it was Christmas Day here and not much was open so we weren't able to get around to see the island and the port itself isn't that nice. The excursions on offer didn't really appeal.
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  • St. Thomas
    We love St. Thomas as we've been there before. We wanted to see if we could get to the same beach we'd been to before. Unfortunately, when we got there, we barely recognised it. The last hurricane that went through there had ravaged it and it wasn't the big beautiful pristine beach it was before. We had to scroll through our social media feeds from the last time we were there to make sure that we had the same beach because it was so different this time around.
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