1. Home
  2. Cruise Destinations
  3. Canada & New England Cruises
  4. Canada & New England Cruise Reviews
Cruise Ratings
1,432
1,033
678
311
158
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2014

Embarking was a pleasure!! Quick & room ready! The ship is beautiful and nicely designed. The dining rooms were center so the walk from dinner to the show was shorter than other ships that have the dining room aft. The theatre is ... Read More

Embarking was a pleasure!! Quick & room ready! The ship is beautiful and nicely designed. The dining rooms were center so the walk from dinner to the show was shorter than other ships that have the dining room aft. The theatre is small compared to other lines, so it fills quite early.The shows were good with great special effects in the special ones. The cooking show was the best ever - not to be missed! The sky walk was unique, but very slippery when wet, which was most of the time. Food was good with a nice variety in the dining room as well as the buffet. Service was always good. The other options were the International Cafe - great! & the pizza parlor - great & a favorite!! The 2 tender ports in New England were no problem and the time to go to and fro was quick.The TV stations really need to be more people friendly with "normal" shows & not all varities of just news shows. I enjoyed this ship and wish it would depart from NY/NJ to the Carribbean! I miss sailing Princess from this area to the islands!

Read Less
Sail Date: October 2014

We booked this cruise based on the ports of call, this was our first cruise with RC. It will also probably be our last. We did meet on board MANY other RC repeats, and they seemed to be somewhat happy, particularly since they were ... Read More

We booked this cruise based on the ports of call, this was our first cruise with RC. It will also probably be our last. We did meet on board MANY other RC repeats, and they seemed to be somewhat happy, particularly since they were pampered with upgrades and private events. Overall however we noticed, and they commented that the BIG ships had pouched many of the quality staff and it showed. They must have also pouched the officers since at least in regards to dining and food service there was no supervision. Although the food was mediocre our biggest disappointment was activities. The Activities Director and his French counterpart thought they were hilarious, but in reality most people tuned them out and they provided few activities over the many sea days. The one activity that never stopped was the daily pushing of the "art" sales/auctions. When will people start looking at the lawsuits on-line and cruise ships stop this blatant rip-off. The entertainment was horrendous. Please note that if you are thinking of this itinerary in October the ship may not be able to get into some ports due to weather. We missed Sydney and the previous three cruises were rumored to have missed St. Pierre once and St. Johns, twice. With 3 sea days already missing a port really amps up the boredom level. The first time I have said that about a cruise.

Read Less
Sail Date: October 2014

This was a typical RCI experience on this seven day cruise from Boston to Halifax, St John NB, Bar Harbor and Portland ME, and back to Boston. Seas were flat, sun shone most of the trip, and was in all respects the typical RCI cruise ... Read More

This was a typical RCI experience on this seven day cruise from Boston to Halifax, St John NB, Bar Harbor and Portland ME, and back to Boston. Seas were flat, sun shone most of the trip, and was in all respects the typical RCI cruise experience - nothing special, nothing added, nothing omitted, from usual RCI standard.

This was my first cruise as a Pinnacle Member and I got quick VIP treatment in the departure terminal in Boston. I was in fact the only Pinnacle on this trip and so got good and responsive treatment by all throughout the cruise, but no "upgrade" as the suites were sold out as was the entire ship except interiors.

Concierge Lounge is an amenity that all Diamond Plus, Pinnacle and Suite guests greatly appreciate, and the Concierge Arius, was excellent. Both lounges - Concierge and Diamond, have been recently relocated as part of the :"revitalization", to the Viking Crown. Revitalization includes the elimination unfortunately of the formerly popular, and free, Seaview Café, replaced by Izumi, a new Solarium Café, other new (fee required) restaurant's, additional cabins tucked here and there (resulting in greater crowds especially in the DR), and an Aeriel Show in the Centrum. Library has "disappeared", replaced by two cabinets of "Swap" books in the back of a lounge. Two cabinets does NOT make a Library. Aeriel show a great disappointment as most people stand on the various Centrum balconies for 30+ minutes to be able to "see it", and (believe it or not) it lasted SEVEN minutes. A waste in my book.

Captain was very loath to share information it seemed. Never told us course, speed etc. as we left port. Port information available consisted of nothing more than shopping maps. When we arrived in Halifax with five other ships, it was almost impossible to get information about port shuttles etc. except by going out onto the pier and asking local authorities.

Food and Entertainment was typical RCI, off of their usual menu which I think I know by heart. Food however was not as well prepared as my recent trip on Oasis, although the menus are of course, the same.

Both Production Shows were new to me, and they did have a good comedian as opposed to the usual very poor one presented at the Welcome Aboard Show. The Top Tier party, usually looked forward to by many, has no degenerated into nothing more that a sales talk and a choice of three different, previously prepared, cocktails. Neither Captain nor Hotel Director made an appearance. Reception for Suite and Pinnacle members was nice however.

All other ports were OK and have been reported on my many.

Disembarkation in Boston easy, and I was off ship about 0730

Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2014

We decided to go on a cruise on the Royal, as we are booked next April for a Transatlantic cruise and we wanted to make sure this was the ship we wanted to sail on. The Royal was indeed a grand ship. Although she was larger than the ... Read More

We decided to go on a cruise on the Royal, as we are booked next April for a Transatlantic cruise and we wanted to make sure this was the ship we wanted to sail on. The Royal was indeed a grand ship. Although she was larger than the other Princess ships we have sailed on, so much of it was exactly the same as the smaller ships, we felt right at home. Yes there was not an outside deck to walk on on the 7th deck, but there were small areas outside that you could sit at and enjoy the sea and weather. Yes the elevators were busy, but more particularly during meal hours, which is to be expected. Yes there was no staircases mid ship, but we did not miss them at all. Yes the balconies were smaller, but could be used to sit and enjoy the weather and a libation. Yes the cabins were smaller, but clean, comfortable, cozy and lots of storage space. Yes the Sea Walk is not a great addition, but it was fun to walk on once and stare down at the ocean. I read a lot of reviews and these seemed to be some common concerns by a lot of cruisers.

We were at the back of the ship, our favourite spot, in a deluxe balcony cabin. The cabin was a good size, not quite as big as expected, but big enough for us to get around. The bathroom was a fair size and they had fancy new shower heads which made for nicer showers. And yes a little foot shelf area for leg shaving, or just putting any shower products you wanted. The new flat screen TV's are a great addition, and the newer movies showing were a welcome treat. Must comment on our cabin Steward Carlito who was just great. He was quiet, professional, and always smiling, a very nice Steward. Thank you Carlito.

The food was amazing at our dining room. We have always liked traditional dining as it allows us to meet people and make new friends. We dined at the Allegro, late dining and had such great servers, Jowel and Milan. They were funny, professional, attentive, and we were delighted to have them serving us. Hope to see them again in April. Also the small alcove we were in, with just four other tables surrounding us, was really different from the other large dining areas on the smaller ships. Loved it!

The Horizon Food Court was the biggest we have seen onboard any ship, huge. It was always very busy and sometimes finding a seat was challenging, but we did always manage. We did not eat there a lot, we prefer the dining rooms for breakfast and lunch, but it was great for an afternoon snack. All the dining areas we visited had very good food.

We had a lot of fun at Crooner's bar, where we would meet up with our friends every night before dinner. We made friends with one of the servers, John, and he made sure we were in his section every night. He enjoyed us as much as we enjoyed him. We often had martini's and he'd balance the glass on his forehead and nose and pour the drinks that way. It was very amusing, he never dropped a glass, or dripped a drop. Good going John.

We went to several ports, but sadly Mother Nature decided she was going to limit some ports, so we spent our last two days in Halifax, we did not get to St. John. We went to the Vanderbilt Mansion in New Port, met some friends in Boston, who showed us around, just walked around Bar Harbor, and of course spent two days getting to know Halifax. We were fine with everything, not much you can do about the weather.

We went to a couple of the shows, which were okay, but we enjoyed the individual singers, and musicians better. The pianist, singer, from Canada, Kory, was very good, and the violinist, Chris, were our favourites. Went to three shows for each.

We are Platinum members on Princess, and we very much enjoy sailing with them. Their disembarkation process is fine. The only concern I have ever had is their embarkation process, it always seems painstakingly slow. They are trying now to change that, but their new system did not seem to work this time either. Hopefully someday they will get a handle on this.

Loved the cruise, can't wait till April.

Read Less
Sail Date: October 2014

This being my second Carnival Cruise, I've learned to not expect anything more than you pay for and that is my ultimate expectation with Carnival. I'm not speaking negatively, its just that the consumer/cruise-goer should go in with ... Read More

This being my second Carnival Cruise, I've learned to not expect anything more than you pay for and that is my ultimate expectation with Carnival. I'm not speaking negatively, its just that the consumer/cruise-goer should go in with this attitude and not expect a Disney or Celebrity experience and it will help you enjoy everything a bit more. Very similar in going to a throw-a-way movie with no serious expectations and you'll enjoy the ride.

For me, this cruise fit in perfectly with a longer vacation I'd already had planned. I spent a few days touring DC, a few days touring NY and it just made sense to take advantage of a really good deal by finishing my vacation on a cruise going to Saint John, NB and Halifax, Nova Scotia....a place I'd been wanting to see. I'm from Los Angeles so a trek to the East Coast is a long trip and I wanted to maximize my experience.

I was able to buy Faster to the Fun and can say it's a great $50 add-on. Although there is no tendering on this route, it more than paid for itself in early embarkation and disembarkation. My room was ready and decorated (I paid for the Happy Birthday Decoration Package for my wife) when I got on the ship early and my luggage delivered. Being able to drop off any carry-on luggage is a small result of the FTTF program. The other major win was leaving the ship. I got a note on the last night saying that if I wanted to take my own luggage off the ship by myself, just meet at the Black Pearl at 7:30a for immediate release. I was there with the other priority level passengers (maybe 60 people) and they let us off. It went so quickly that we were the second people in the taxi line. There were no taxis waiting for passengers so I probably waited 10 minutes at the curb for a cab but in that time, the line grew to hundreds of people so if you can get FTTF and you want to maximize your time (it gave us time to ice skate at Rockefeller Center and tour some more until our 6p flight from JFK) I'd do it if you can get it. For the record, when we initially checked in, I saw the sheet that the woman was holding for FTTF and it was about a page and a half long at about 35 names per page.

FOOD

Originally I'm a Las Vegas native and grew up going to buffets and shows. With no snobbery intended, I've been to the lowest (Circus Circus/Arizona Charlies to the best...Bellagio, Mirage) and other buffets in between and I'd rank the Carnival buffets at the bottom end of the scale. For other people that weren't raised with that kind of buffet experience, the ship buffet will probably do you just fine. For me, it was of low quality and poorly run and I stayed away about 90% of the time. The buffet is a novelty for my 10 year old daughter so I got to see it up close while she got stuff on a daily basis. Of especially low quality were the baked goods. I swear they baked every other day then kept putting them out as they were quite stale. Plastic drink cups seemed to run out quite a bit but I always had access to ceramic coffee mugs which I preferred drinking out of anyway, hot or cold. Bacon folks...pretty tricky setup for the bacon on this feed line. It was placed between the main buffet and omelette window making it kind of unnoticeable. On a daily basis I'd hear people say "I can't believe there's no bacon!" Just a tip.

Anyhow, enough about the buffets and I'll move on to the specialty food kiosks. I thought I'd read that there was a sushi one but it wasn't anywhere to be found. Maybe it's gone or was the Tasting bar. Whatever the case, the four other kiosks (I put a grade next to them) were the Grille (Hot Dogs & Burgers), Deli (Sandwiches made to order), Tandoori (Indian), and Pizza . The pizza was made to order so it was fresh and actually quite good. Took about 10 minutes from order until you had it in your hands. I love Indian so was looking forward to it. They always had a good assortment and it was nice to experience those flavors on a cruise. My only problem was that they couldn't keep up with the Naan bread demand. I'd try and grab a piece when I passed by but there was only bread on two occasions. Overall quality of the Indian was something you might get at a mall food court. Grille was surprising busy. I only ordered Fries from there once and they were good. I overheard people saying the burgers were good. I gave it a C because it looked average to me. Deli....it was quite a messy way to order. Your best bet is to stand up anywhere at the counter and someone might come to you. Forget any sense of order or line. I ordered a grilled cheese sandwich for my daughter. It was pressed in a Panini machine but it didn't come close to melting the cheese. The bread couldn't take much more time or it would have been burned.

On to the main dining room....In all my cruises, this was the most thought out as far as grouping people goes. We were placed with Two grandparent couples each with a kid in the 9-11 range and another Mom with her 11 year old. Great company and it worked out well. Servers were fine but I never got the feeling that they wanted to know about you and they just wanted to do their job and get out. On all the other cruises I've taken a good bond generally forms but not here. To expand, it felt like most of the crew was just grinding it out and waiting for their contract to end. Anyhow, the food was a small step up from the buffet. It almost always arrived warm and not hot. The servers had too many other tables to contend with and weren't snappy enough to deliver the food thus it just sat on the prep table for 5-10 minutes before they would reach over and put it in front of you. The bread basket was just a basket of empty carbs and always room temp. Another case of poor quality baked goods. I had reservations on the last cruise night to dine at the Steakhouse (Pinnacle) for my wife's birthday so I didn't pay for any "upgrades" from the steakhouse menu that were available for $20 in the MDR. I'm of the belief that the food that they serve in the MDR should be of good enough quality already so I shouldn't have to upgrade. I was wrong. :) In general, the food IMO was really just something you might get at Chilis or Applebees but presented in a much nicer manner. It wasn't fine dining for sure. Bette than the buffet though. The desserts were also just average, often looking better than they tasted.

CAMP CARNIVAL

Our daughter went into the 6-11 group of kids and had a blast. After touring the department and reviewing their policies, we felt comfortable and if given the choice, our daughter would have stayed there for the entire time we were at sea. Highlights for her were the Scavenger Hunts and the "Build a Bear" style of night. Making T-Shirts and trivia were also fun for her.

MISC

I would have liked to do the behind the scene tour but at $95 pp it seemed a little high to me. Most of the crew seemed really burned out. Crew management needs to do a better job with the spirit of the crew. Did the Green Eggs and Ham breakfast. It was fun and well worth the $5 pp charge but the service was unusually bad where guests ended up getting up and helping themselves serve coffee as the morning was poorly understaffed. Cruise Director Malcolm seemed ok, entertainment guy who called Bingo Games was fine.  A great book to read is available on Amazon named "Chronicles of a Cruise Ship Crew Member" and it can give some awesome insight to crew life.

Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2014

What a way to celebrate 50 years of marriage. We sailed the Summit last September by ourselves and decided to do it again this year to celebrate as we loved it so much (we just ignored all the negative reviews and went based on the ... Read More

What a way to celebrate 50 years of marriage. We sailed the Summit last September by ourselves and decided to do it again this year to celebrate as we loved it so much (we just ignored all the negative reviews and went based on the positive reviews). Our daughter and her boyfriend sailed with us this year. (we are in our 70s and daughter and boyfriend in mid to late 40s) We had Aqua Class Cabins. Our daughter never cruised and said she didn't know what the big hype was about. Well, after a few days she said she now knows. They both said it was an "awesome" vacation and loved everything about it from the cabin, to the food in Blu, to the entertainment, especially Quebec, the music around the ship, the buffet, the free ice cream we had every day, and on and on. The only complaint was you don't get enough time in port but they understand that the cruise itself is your destination.

All 4 of us loved sailing out of Bayonne, including seeing the Statue of Liberty to the Teardrop. The weather leaving Bayonne was perfect. We had rain twice on the cruise but that is the weather and cannot be controlled. I know a lot of people have complaints about the ship but you cannot please everyone. We had no complaints about our cabins; the balcony furniture was in excellent shape and comfortable. The beds were comfortable. Loved having the free water bottles and the tea delivered every day. I did bring lemon powdered drink to add as I heard it is on the weaker side. Our experience in Blu was one of the highlights of our cruise. The 4 of us would get a table together and made sure we had the same waiter each night who treated us like royalty. One of the other highlights was the Sugar Shack in Quebec. It was such a fun night. I am not going to review each port as everyone sees it differently but all I can say is our only disappointment was the cancellation of our carriage ride in Bar Harbor as the carriage roads were water covered plus it was still raining all morning. The fall colors were beautiful, especially along the Sagueny cruise we took. When the sun shines the fall colors are so radiant. I hope we get to take this cruise again. All I can say to everyone reading this is: make the best of whatever happens. Nothing is perfect and you cannot expect it. Just have fun.

Read Less
Sail Date: October 2014

This was our first cruise on Princess. We chose the Royal Princess because of being new and large. I think they were wonderful to cruise with. I had traveled with Celebrity Solstice last year and wondered if they would be as good. I was ... Read More

This was our first cruise on Princess. We chose the Royal Princess because of being new and large. I think they were wonderful to cruise with. I had traveled with Celebrity Solstice last year and wondered if they would be as good. I was pleasantly surprised. Embarking was fast and I was having lunch by 12:30 in the buffet. Our room was ready and the room steward Elisa was exceptional . We enjoyed Alfredos three days for lunch pizzas and calzones which were wonderful. They helped us celebrate a birthday with cake at dinner at the steak house, balloons and sign for door and choclate covered strawberries in the cabin. I really enjoyed the entertainment nightly and loved sitting right up front bottom floor. Nightly we enjoyed going to the casino. We had room service and enjoyed everything. The Crown grill was very good fillet , lobster and the best scallops my husband had eaten. The choclate cake ended the celebration. I want to say the people on the ship were giving 100% to make our trip enjoyable. We did the walk off with our luggage which was good. Also they have a laundry and you can press your clothes there which is a plus.

Read Less
Sail Date: October 2014

First, let me preface my review by stating that my opinion of the ship and the cruise is soley based on my experience, and will probably differ from other cruisers who were on the same cruise as I was.

Embarkation at the ... Read More

First, let me preface my review by stating that my opinion of the ship and the cruise is soley based on my experience, and will probably differ from other cruisers who were on the same cruise as I was.

Embarkation at the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal (Red Hook) was terrible. Waiting in line for over an hour to get processed while priority cruisers zipped through the line in no time at all. Most of the agents were there to process the priority cruisers and the rest of us (the majority) were treated like second class citizens. Ironically, I became a priority cruiser on this cruise and look forward to my next cruise so I can get this treatment. Red Hook needs to add more agents when the large ships are in port and process the priority passengers in another area. Hopefully I will never have to cruise out of this port again.

Once on board, the wait for an elevator to our room took a while. The lack of stairs in the middle of the ship is a poor design. You have to go to either the front or the aft elevator section to use the stairs. A review of our room is separate. If you book a room on deck 8 (Emerald), don't book one over the Princess Theater. Way too noisy.

We don't use the MDRs on board and prefer to dine in the Horizon Court or Bistro. Service was terrible. The lack of staff in these areas makes service a disappointment. On a majority of visits, I had to go get my drinks since I was not being served by any of the staff, It was like I was invisible. With few exceptions, most didn't smile or seem happy to be there. The food was okay, but lacked the usual items you would get in a restaurant, I like rice, but could not find any. Vegetables were usually steamed, which I don't care for but will tolerate. The selections were more for foreign cruisers than American passengers. I suippose the chefs wanted to show off their ability to cook many varieties of food.

The entertainment was okay, nothing spectacular. We enjoyed the RCMP band at the end of the cruise in Halifax. Most of the other entertainers were more geared for the Titanic than a Princess cruise ship. Where were all the good bands playing 60's, 70's and 80's music?

The Royal is a beautiful ship. I especially enjoyed the Skywalk that extends out from the side of the ship and has glass floors so you can see the ocean below. The atrium is very beautiful as well. Due to the terrible weather during our cruise, we were unable to see the dancing fountains near the pool area. I was looking forward to seeing that.

Due to the nor'easter we encountered on this cruise, we missed stopping at St. Johns, Newfoundland. Instead we spent two not so great days in Halifax. Except for our excursion to Peggy's Cove, most of our time was spent aboard ship, due to the weather and a terrorist incident in Halifax that canceled many tours and had most of the passengers requested to remain on board the ship. (Never a dull moment when cruising).

I will probably sail on the Royal again some day, but in the Caribbean, not in New England.

Read Less
Sail Date: October 2014

My wife and I just got back today. Our 2nd trip on this ship but the last was 9 years ago. Grandeur has had a major renovation since then but mainly, I would say, to common areas. We like this ship. It is not too big and it is ... Read More

My wife and I just got back today. Our 2nd trip on this ship but the last was 9 years ago. Grandeur has had a major renovation since then but mainly, I would say, to common areas. We like this ship. It is not too big and it is comfortable. Yes, it is getting older but it is well maintained.

About this particular cruise...We wanted somthing quiet and restful and we got it. There were 4 ports, but 3 of them, Portland, St. John and Halifax did not offer much. Sorry, but they just are not beautiful cities. Bar Harbor, on the other hand was wonderful. Note, we flew by the seat of our pants regarding shore excursions and only took one (St. John trolly tour). If you want to do an excursion in Halifax, book it before you go. There are so many cruise ships in port that you will have little chance of getting on a tour once you hit the port. We did not go to Peggy's Cove but, in retrospect, wish we had. We did a long self-guided walking tour of Halifax that was pretty much a bust.

Notes:

The passengers on this cruise represent a much old demographic. Average age is probably well into the 70's.

The food in the main dining room is only average (seems to be the norm for RC). Avoid the strip steaks in the dining room... thin, tough, dry. All the food is prepared so far in advance it just doesn't some out of the kitchen well. The shrimp on the cocktails are small and limp. The escargot is tasty but not hot. Desserts are just so so.

Specialy dining...

Chef's Table is great! 5 courses with wine pairings. Seats up to 14. Takes about 4 hours. Food, wine and presentation were very nice.

Giovanni's was very good. We ate there twice. Dining room is pretty and the service and food were fine.

Chops is outdated. Ugly dark old wall paneling with cheap prints of the NY skyline. It is trying to look clubby but just looks tired. Service, however, was excellent. Food was way better than the dining room but not really super (except for the mushroom soup that was out of this world). Fliet mignon was somewhat tasteless and the bernaise sauce was too thick and tart.

Coffee was not good anywhere on the ship, very strong and bitter. Bring your own. You just need a coffee buddy brewing device and you can make it anywhere.

Overall, we knew what we wanted from this cruise and we got it. We came home rested and relaxed. But, if you want excitement, it's the wrong cruise.

Read Less
Sail Date: October 2014

Having cruised on Celebrity many times, you can tell that it is not maintaining it's high standards high standard. Although all the ship personnel were wonderful, the ship does need updating. In our cabin we had a sofa where the cushion ... Read More

Having cruised on Celebrity many times, you can tell that it is not maintaining it's high standards high standard. Although all the ship personnel were wonderful, the ship does need updating. In our cabin we had a sofa where the cushion constantly slipped off. When we mentioned this to our excellent room Stewart, she said a lot of people had complained about it too. My mattress was so lopsided that I had to be careful not to roll out of bed. The food on the ship was generally good. But, i cannot recall on any other cruise that so many things ran out. Four days before the end of the cruise there were no berries available. Three days before the end, we were told that they ran out of honey for tea. Then there were no more lemons - unbelievable. Also, forget the chocolates every night on your pillow. We had one chocolate one night on the pillow and that was it.

Otherwise, we loved their Bistro with all the different selections of crepes. Actually, that was our best meal. The shows were great too. The captain, hilarious. He was so funny and accessible. The ports of call were also very nice. I must commend the Canadian cruise terminals. Each one of them had free wifi, was clean and had spacious rest rooms not at all what we are used to in the US.

 

Read Less

Find a Cruise