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2,367 South America Cruise Reviews

We just came back from Azamara Pursuit from BA to Rio. We previously sailed on Celebrity, Princess, Holland, Cunard, Oceania, Costa, RCI and Carnival. This was our 12th cruise. Our benchmark is Oceania (we sailed on the Riviera last ... Read More
We just came back from Azamara Pursuit from BA to Rio. We previously sailed on Celebrity, Princess, Holland, Cunard, Oceania, Costa, RCI and Carnival. This was our 12th cruise. Our benchmark is Oceania (we sailed on the Riviera last September). Overall Pursuit is a great ship and we had an amazing time. However we liked the Riviera better. Here is why. The service is excellent, comparable to Oceania. But sometimes things seem a bit less organized. For example, some of the excustions were delayed 15-20 minutes. Never happened on Oceania. Also there are some lines when leaving the ship and coming back. Nothing major, not even close to what you see on big ships, but still slightly longer waiting times than Oceania. The dinner in the MDR is great, but not as good as Oceania. The open seating works very well for us, never had to wait for a table. The buffet is disappointing. Good quality, but selection is pretty limited. It is not bad overall, but few levels below Oceania. The buffet area itself is also very small and feels a bit crowded at times. Internet is probably the worst we experienced so far on cruise ships. 300kbps is not what you would expect from a luxury line in 2019. It is also pretty expensive at $20/day. We paid last year $10/day on Princess (and the speed was 20 times faster). And we sailed on older ships with much higher internet speeds. Major disappointment. Spa does not have couple massage. This is the first time on any ship that we were not able to do a couple massage. The massage itself was very good. Cabin on Oceania was small, here it's even smaller. Not a big deal, we don't spend much time in the cabin. Entertainment is mediocre at best. They don't have a real theater like on larger ships, just a big lounge with chairs. No angle, so if you don't sit on few first rows, the view is pretty limited. They cannot really provide a good evening entertainment when there is no real theater. Also not too many daily activities, and the ship feels a bit sleepy at times. The pool area is small and feels a bit crowded. Usually no problem to get a chair, except for sea days. Hot tubs are smaller than usual and not hot enough. Service is fantastic as you can expect from a luxury line. Staff is very friendly. Very limited food options. If you want to have a snack after 9pm, the only option is room service. Dress code is relaxing, no formal nights, which is perfect for us. The azamazing event was very nice and well organized. Great atmosphere. The show itself felt a bit amateur. The pre even buffet was very crowded and poorly organized. White night was nice, but we came late from our tour in Sao Paulo, and no seats available on deck 9. They simply cannot accommodate everyone on the white night because the pool area is not big enough. Why to do white night on port day like Sao Paulo when the ship is at port till 9pm, and not sea day or port with shorter port time? Excursions were another disappointment. While we appreciate smaller groups, some of them were poorly organized, and some guides were not professional. I believe Azamara made a business decision to focus on certain things and ignore other things. Their customers obviously don't care about internet, or certain daily activities like dance classes, zumba, music at the pool etc. Overall great ship, great service, good food, but we prefer Oceania Riviera. Both lines are still better than mainstream ships from Celebrity or Princess which feel much more crowded, with longer lines. But in my opinion, Riviera offers the best of both worlds: still a small ship, which still feels much less crowded, but at the same time, much better food, more activities, and better entertainment. And it actually has a better crew/passengers ratio than Azamara, so service is at least as good if not better. We did appreciate the excellent service, less crowded buffet, smaller groups on shore excursions, no lines etc. compared to the big ships. I guess we just expected better from Azamara. We might sail with Azamara again if the itinerary and the price are right, but all other things equal, we would definitely prefer Oceania. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
This was our first time on Azamara, we have done 20 cruises in the past usually 2-3 week itineraries. In the last 6 months we have tried several new cruise lines including Crystal, Seabourn and Viking after primarily cruising on the main ... Read More
This was our first time on Azamara, we have done 20 cruises in the past usually 2-3 week itineraries. In the last 6 months we have tried several new cruise lines including Crystal, Seabourn and Viking after primarily cruising on the main lines of NCL, Celebrity and Hal. Originally we only booked the 17 night Transatlantic but managed to find a good last minute deal while in South America and added the 11 night Buenos Aires to Rio preceding leg. Overall we had a wonderful time with the weather being mostly great (except on white nights), the crossing being smooth and the crew and service being excellent. Embarkation in BA was very easy and super quick (in contrast to our X cruise from the same port which was chaotic) due to the small number of passengers who seemed to arrive spread out and the large number off staff in the terminal. On boarding we were greeted with champagne (the same terrible stuff all the cruise lines seem to be using now). It was immediately apparent how friendly the crew is. The ship is new to Azamara and one of the seemingly famous R class ships. They have done a great job with their refurbishment in most areas as the interiors looked lovely and new. The ship is probably the smallest we have been on and has a small boutique hotel feel. The movement was noticeable, especially on the first leg and seemed strange as the sea seemed relatively calm. The captain told me it was because the stabilisers don't work all that well when sailing slowly as we were, it was noticeably better on the crossing. We have been enjoying the small ships but did find this to be a little less spacious then the slightly larger vessels of Crystal and Viking where the extra space more than offsets for the slightly larger amount of passengers. The highlights of the ship were the library space and the crows nest however it was noticeable in bad weather conditions that internal public space can be difficult to find. The less favourable aspects of the ship was the lack of a full promenade for walking but Azamara has cleverly made the top deck above the pool an area exclusively for walking (something that was lacking on Seabourn). The partial promenades are an excellent place for lounging and watching the ocean. Speaking of lounging, the sun loungers are the best we have come across - the cushioning was impressive. There is a lot of comfortable furniture around the ship and it is obvious that Azamara is aimed at those who mostly like to relax. Fellow passengers were very friendly and the vibe is definitely casual and was noticeably more relaxed than some of the other premium lines, this suited us perfectly. It seemed the majority of passengers were either regular Azamara or Celebrity cruisers. It is definitely a social atmosphere and meeting fellow passengers was easy. At first it seemed nightlife was non existent until we discovered the disco was rocking every night on the first leg. On the second leg there was still a lot of activity in the evening but it tended to be more towards the Den around the piano player. Cabins - we had 2 different ocean view cabins. The first was on deck 6 and was an obstructed view. The room was an unusual shape. It was quite small but with some imagination the storage was plentiful. The bed was super comfortable and the linens and towels clearly new but the room had no couch. The shape of the room meant that getting changed was easy and you did not tend to obstruct one another. Liana our attendant was phenomenal. Our second cabin was your more typical layout located on deck 4 with unobstructed view. It was a larger cabin but we had to have the coffee table removed as it blocked 90% of the passage into the room. While this room was preferable it was noticeable that we tended to get more tangled when trying to get ready. One slight annoyance of this location is that the corridor was often blocked when in port which meant long walks to get back to public areas. The major issue with both cabins were the infamous showers. Small would be an understatement and add to this the uncomfortable feeling of shower curtains and it was not a pleasant experience. Often I resorted to having a shower at the gym facilities after having a steam. There is probably little Azamara could do to fix this but it does feel noticeably less luxurious compared to its small ship rivals. Similarly on this negative note was the in room entertainment system, incredibly poor. No on demand offerings at all and even the cruise ship information such as maps and cameras seemed very old technology (how does this happen on a new ship?) Dining - the ship has the MDR, buffet, poolside patio and 2 specialty restaurants. The MDR was a lovely but extremely busy room. The breakfast offered here was the best I have come across with interesting alternatives such as shashuka and asian inspired dishes and the breakfast steak was one of the best I have had. Dinner was generally good with a large menu with plenty of variety. We found that the daily specials tended to be the best along with simple meat dishes. The quality of meat was good relative to other lines, fish was hit or miss and more exotic dishes tended to fail. The buffet was good without being great, the freshly made sandwiches at lunchtime being the highlight and the daily roasts. The outdoor eating area is lovely. We did not eat dinner here but it was a different theme each night. The patio did the usual burgers but had a nice salad bar and at night was a good casual alternative focusing primarily on meat dishes. The specialty restaurants are a steak house and an Italian, $30 for each. The food and service in each was excellent and a noticeably better experience than the mdr which is not always the case. It was noticeable that there is a lack of asian options onboard compared to other small lines. Room service was very good but the inability to see the mdr menu on the tv or app is ridiculous and means you have to leave your room. Bars/drinks - there are plenty of bars for a small ship with the dedicated coffee bar being very popular. The main bars are the Den and Living room which are both great. The restaurants all have small bars as well. Bar service was very good and we rarely waited too long. Quality of drinks was average. Much better than on Seabourn but well short of the standard we experienced on Crystal. Similar to Viking where it depended a little on the bartender. Azamara includes basic drinks which is generally good and helps add to the social atmosphere. For me the major problem was with the drinks packages and it was noticeable this was frustrating for a large number of fellow guests. The premium package purports to offer premium beers and spirits. In the case of beer this is not true it simply adds more of the usual standard brands, there was nothing resembling a craft beer and there was no pilsener or pale ale at all. Again it could be debated whether the additional spirits are premium. The ultimate package adds "premium" wines and water and some more spirits. However, of the 8 wines 3 were missing, of the 6 scotches 3 were missing. There is no dessert wines at all included - I have never seen this, they would not even include a cheap chilean option from the menu. Onboard management complained of supply issues in South America and a lack of authority to adjust what is included. If this is the case Azamara head office should be sued for false advertising, if onboard management cannot adjust what is included then everything must be available. Further to these problems obtaining a glass of the ultimate wines in the restaurant regularly took between 15 and 40 minutes which was unacceptable. As time went on and complaints became more frequent the sommeliers (only 3 on the whole ship) began using alternative brands and stocking the nearby bars but why the wines are not put in the restaurant makes no sense. Viking has the same system and yet was never a problem as they simply stored the wine next to the inclusive options. On a small number of occasions I was poured included wine instead of the premium and twice witnessed standard spirits being used in my cocktails, this is unacceptable when you have paid extra for the better products. This was my major gripe on the cruise and noticeably cheapened the entire cruise experience. It felt like we were constantly having to discuss problems related to premium beverages. Azamara would be wise to change to one premium drinks package and have the products readily at hand especially as it spent considerable time and man power marketing the packages! Activities - trivia, trivia and more trivia - an overload. We love participating but surely a little more variety of activities might be appropriate and more variety of questions for those on b2b's. The first cruise was port intensive so there was little in the way of onboard activities and we found the port lecturer to be rude and uninformative. The second cruise was packed with trivias and lecture, we loved the art classes but could not participate in other activities as they were all scheduled at the same time. Also the timetable never changed day to day which led to a feeling of reliving the same day over and over. There was a number of fitness classes that were enjoyable although the instructor was not inspiring. The ship has table tennis and shuffleboard however due to location both are impractical for use. Entertainment - hit or miss. There was some particularly memorable performances such as the local tango act, the capoeira dance group, Amanda the ACD show and the ballroom dancers. However the production shows were simple (band was good though), the comedian was racist and on a couple of nights there was simply a bad movie. We had one Azamazing evening which was excellent and logistically impressive although we were the last back and only just made dinner time. Both white nights were hit by poor weather, the first simply moved indoors and the party continued on the second however the entertainment did not follow indoors and it fizzled in comparison. We found the CD to not be personable, he often walked around the ship but didn't seem to mingle much with guests. Strangely his wife did a number of performances but apparently was not an employee or contractor - we found this strange and pondered whether there could be an insurance problem in the unlikely event something went wrong. Also seemed strange to give so much time to her when Amanda the ACD was clearly much more talented and enjoyable and we even noticed that on white night the employed singers would have to miss out on a microphone in lieu of her participating. On the first leg the ACD Lee was a lovely guy who was very personable with the guests. The Trio band used in the bars were clearly talented but the set was so old fashioned, you were lucky if you got to hear something from the 60s. While we are in our early 40s and younger than most on the ship the general music of the ship was way too old and it was noticeable that few people danced until a modern song was played. Also the DJ in the disco did not have wifi so it was impossible for him to play requested songs not on his list. The piano player had a great knowledge but seemed to be lacking confidence when it came to singing although he improved markedly on the second leg. Service - the highlight of the ship. Probably the most friendly crew we have encountered (2nd to Crystal on overall performance). I guess service needs to be at a premium to balance the lower quality hardware.but they definitely delivered. Many of the crew remembered our names quickly and our preferences. Officers were more visible on the 2nd leg but often you had to approach them to actually interact. Disembarkation was earlier than other cruise lines. Overall a relaxing cruise and very good value for money compared to main lines. The vibe felt similar to celebrity but obviously much more intimate. Crew friendliness is their main strength. Personally we like a slightly larger ship (900-1000 passengers such as Crystal and Viking) with a greater variety of activities but can see why Azamara has such a loyal following. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
This was our seventh Azamara cruise. Rio was on our bucket list. We chose this cruise because we liked Azamara and we had never been to Brazil. Our last Azamara cruise was to the Baltic last August on the Journey. The Pursuit does not ... Read More
This was our seventh Azamara cruise. Rio was on our bucket list. We chose this cruise because we liked Azamara and we had never been to Brazil. Our last Azamara cruise was to the Baltic last August on the Journey. The Pursuit does not live up to the Azamara brand. The food was, at best, mediocre. Windows Cafe served mostly highly spiced Asian and Mexican food at lunch and dinner. The breakfasts were the same every day. Often, the pancakes and waffles were stuck to the serving pan, so they were dried out and inedible. Breakfasts in the main restaurant were better, but you had to ask for things like eggs over medium or poached eggs. The breakfast menu contained a lot of Asian and Indian items, along with some French items, not normal breakfast fare. Service in both Windows and the main dining room was great. On the second day of the cruise, the cruise ship ran out of diet decaffeinated soda. Didn’t matter what brand, they had none. Just Diet Coke. This is supposed to be an upscale cruise line. Almost every day, the vegetables were broccoli and cauliflower. No green beans, no peas, no carrots, just broccoli and cauliflower. Again, this is supposed to be an upscale cruise line. Except for the four singers and the orchestra, the entertainment was pitiful - a tango show that was more slide show than dancing, a mentalist (two times), and the cruise director and his wife singing old standards off key. The Azamazing evening in Montevideo consisted of a 30 minute bus ride to an old theater, where they handed you a glass of wine as you walked in, then took it away four steps and two minutes later when you entered the theater. Waste of wine, although it wasn’t that good anyway. The show consisted of about 40 performers in very colorful costumes in a Carnival type celebration. There was some singing, but mostly it was very loud drumming. Along with flashing lights. Then back to the ship to wait in line for 20 minutes to reboard. We did get nice Carnival masks as souvenirs. The White Night celebration was held despite a forecast of rain. The food was very good. It started raining about 10 minutes into the show, so everyone left. Some folks went to the bar on Deck 10, many others just left. Many times, the entire ship smelled like sewage. I believe they were having problems with the plumbing system. The smell permeated the ship. Three days in a row, late afternoon, there was very loud banging next to our room, where there was an access panel. It lasted almost an hour each time. We took three shore excursions from Azamara. All three were overpriced, probably double what a similar excursion from a dockside purveyor would have cost. At Paraty, the tender ride was 40 minutes. The town, a UNESCO site has very uneven cobblestone streets, and walking was difficult. Many people went back to the ship after a few minutes trying to negotiate the ship. Several of the ports were tendered. The crew did an excellent job getting passengers on and off the tenders. The Le Club Voyage Representative never even bothered to welcome us on board, although it was our seventh Azamara cruise and we are also Celebrity Elite Plus. Azamara did nothing to recognize brand loyalty. The Guest Relations staff was not very helpful and took their time accommodating passengers. We waited five minutes for two Guest Relations Representatives to help us, because they were trying to align a printout on special paper. Apparently, the printer had more priority than the paying passengers. If the Pursuit represents the future of Azamara, we are finished with the cruise line. Both Royal Caribbean and Celebrity treat their guests better. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
We wanted to experience South America. With one exception (Paraty) the ports of call did not disappoint. The Azamazing evening was a Carneval show in Montevideo. It was well organized and great entertainment. We bought the indulgence ... Read More
We wanted to experience South America. With one exception (Paraty) the ports of call did not disappoint. The Azamazing evening was a Carneval show in Montevideo. It was well organized and great entertainment. We bought the indulgence package which was well worth the extra money. We also got upgraded to a suite without asking ! That alone should make it five stars but there were some downsides as well. - One of the ‘guest relations’ staff turned out to be anything but. The others were great. - Because we had a lot of OBC, we booked some tours. The ‘gaucho’ tour in Uruguay was disappointing as we went to a dairy and crop farm. Talk about false advertising. - We had butler although he did not really enhance the experience. - The indulgence package included the specialty restaurants. However, it’s not open seating and booking something was very though. The attitude of the person doing the booking did not help. - The app needs work. It’s not updated and does not match the daily program. There is a lot of paper that could be saved...... The food never disappoints and the staff go out of there way to please you. The entertainment was solid and there are plenty of activities. The specialty restaurants are also top notch in food and service as was the Chef’s table. The staff was great in helping us transfer to another room for next cruise. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
My husband and I had recently a 13 days cruise from San Antonio ,Chile ,crossing Chelian Patagonia,Falkland islands, Montevideo and finally ended in Buenos Aires. The ship was tired and needs to be refubrished, all furnishing equipment ... Read More
My husband and I had recently a 13 days cruise from San Antonio ,Chile ,crossing Chelian Patagonia,Falkland islands, Montevideo and finally ended in Buenos Aires. The ship was tired and needs to be refubrished, all furnishing equipment also. Food in the self service ,Lido deck was monotonous and with limited variety.The quality of food was medium. The same quality was in the Dine In restaurant since the chef and kitchen was the same. During all cruise long we had the sense that everything was under economic restrictions Eg. During our stay we had only one hand soap(!) and only one shower cap(!)The personnel in Lido deck was serving you the quantity of the main course probably for the same reason. Entertainment was very cheap and childish (!) All TV sets in the staterooms were very old fashioned and the programme was limited i.e Only 3 movies per day ,and 3 news stations. Of course there was a video player in the stateroom and you could borrow movies if the player was not out of order!! The Wi Fi was very expensive. We tried to purchase 1 day for 15 $ but with this amount you could be able to see only your facebook and therefore you have to upgrade the quality by adding 10 more US$ ie. totally 25 US$ per day. Last but not least were the alcoholic prices(more expensive) which differed from the price list that we have found in the internet. Finally we have to admit that the whole ship was very clean, also the state rooms,and the public toilets.Embarkation was easy and disembarkation also Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
We choose this cruise due to the nature & places the cruise went. We knew there would be things we'd never see again. The ports were fabulous. There were so many things to see. The service was great & staff very friendly. ... Read More
We choose this cruise due to the nature & places the cruise went. We knew there would be things we'd never see again. The ports were fabulous. There were so many things to see. The service was great & staff very friendly. There were many excursions daily. The only thing we feel would be better is if prior to the trip an itinerary of the each days activities had been sent. We were told casual clothing which I thought was for dinner so I didn't pack correctly. I thought we'd be in bathing suits most of the time so for myself I didn't pack tee shirts or shorts. As far as the food there was plenty of choices but all fancy. We would have preferred just plain simple food(meatloaf, hamburgs, etc). The food we ate was good but we didn't eat much. Lunch salads needed to have a lot more items to put in the salad. Usually there was only 2 items other than the lettuce. The ship & cabin was great. Due to the price I don't think we'd go again but you never know. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
We chose this cruise for the itinerary- leaving from the Santiago area (port of San Antonio) and cruising around Cape Horn to the Falkland Islands, ending in Buenos Aires. Originally we had booked a similar cruise with Celebrity but ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the itinerary- leaving from the Santiago area (port of San Antonio) and cruising around Cape Horn to the Falkland Islands, ending in Buenos Aires. Originally we had booked a similar cruise with Celebrity but realized that HAL went to the Falklands and switched for that reason. We booked 18 months in advance because we wanted a Vista Suite (with balcony) mid-ship, facing land (the port side in this case). The ports and general enjoyment of a cruise around Cape Horn is very dependent on the weather as we heard from the Captain and crew, who let us know that the previous cruise which went in the reverse did not had very good luck and missed three ports. Our weather was spectacular for the most part, even in Ushuaia, where they never see sun. We even made it to the Falklands, a long tender which was calm heading in during the morning but a bit rough coming back in the afternoon after penguin watching when the wind picked up. The ship took us through the Darwin Channel, Beagle Strait and Straits of Magellan, each early in the morning where we had close up views of glaciers and the sunrise. The balcony was worth the extra cost just for these amazing days as we didn't need to fight the crowd on deck for a good view. The ship had experts on board who gave excellent talks every sea day on wildlife, South American Culture and history, and the night sky. We also had a port expert who provided a lot of information on what to do each port day. They did not push shore excursions like some cruises, instead showed you what to see and how to do it if you wanted to do it yourself, hire a local guide, or use the ship resources which was very much appreciated. Entertainment was provided part of the time by the ships's group, but we also had excellent shows brought on locally including a Tango show and Bolo dancers which were amazing. Cabin was excellent, food and service top-notch, and the experience one we will never forget. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
We wanted to travel around Cape Horn, something I thought I would probably never get to do. Had been looking at various cruises with this itinerary for quite sometime and they seem to fill up quick or had a pretty steep price/person. ... Read More
We wanted to travel around Cape Horn, something I thought I would probably never get to do. Had been looking at various cruises with this itinerary for quite sometime and they seem to fill up quick or had a pretty steep price/person. Then we saw this cruise offered at a rather reasonable rate and jumped on it. Holland America is not my first choice of cruise line but have cruised them prior and would cruise not exclude Holland in the future. Arrival in Santiago airport a little bit confusing but we made it and you can purchase Chilean pesos in the airport, no problem. Hotel prior to cruise: stayed in Santiago at the Hotel Plaza San Francisco, excellent hotel in the center of Santiago. You can arrange tours of Santiago right at the hotel and the tour will pick you up at the hotel. The service and food are great, very friendly and they speak English. Transportation from airport to hotel and then from hotel to cruise terminal in San Antonio was previously arranged through Viator, no problems. Ship: The ship is an older ship but in good condition. It is easy to navigate and there are approximately 1400 passengers and you have plenty of space, you don't feel like you are in a sardine can, which is quite nice. The crew is friendly and helpful, Capt. was excellent! Always kept you apprised of various weather conditions, ports, etc. We were in cabin 3322 and the cabins on Holland are usually a little larger than on other cruise lines. One problem encountered with this cabin is that you are right next to an exit door on the Lower Promenade deck and there is a large wooden door to the deck outside. This large heavy door would slam shut, and I mean slam shut, every time anyone used it, so if you were sleeping, it very definitely jarred you. Would not select this cabin again for this reason only. The ship has a lot of relaxation areas and is quite comfortable. The entertainment was great, and Holland does a nice job with their shore excursions. Dining Room: We were travelling with friends, and we had a nice table in the Dining Room right next to the upper railing. The problem with this was to gain access to the seats at our table for four. There was a large support post behind the seat closest to the railing and the other side of the table the chairs were abutting the chairs at the table behind. So on both sides of the table to access the seats we had to pull the chair closest to the aisle out into the aisle and let the person get in to their chair closest to the railing and then push the chair back for the next person to get in to sit at the table. The service was not so good and to top it off, our food was delivered not hot, and did not taste good at all. It was in fact, the worst meal I have ever had at sea! We decided after that that we would not eat in the Dining room the remainder of the cruise. The cruise itinerary was good, we were able to get into all the ports: San Antonio, Chile; Puerto Montt, Chile; Punta Arenas, Chile; Ushuaia, Argentina; Falkland Islands; Montevideo, Uruguay; and Buenos Aires, Agentina overnight. There are times when the weather will not permit entry into the ports as the winds are significant in this part of the world and the weather changes very quickly. Do expect seas when travelling this cruise also, so be prepared. One thing I enjoyed very much was the Shore Excursion talks given by Kevin on board the ship. He kind of tells you like it is. He talks about both private tours and ship sponsored tours. He was very informative. Shore Excursions seem to be a little high priced on Holland, so we took a private one in Puerto Montt. In Punta Arenas we did the Tycoons of Patagonia, but we did not get to see the mansion as stated in the tour and our bus broke down, probably the reason we did not get to the mansion, so the shore excursions desk gave us back a partial refund on our tour. In Ushuaia we did the Beagle Channel Wildlife and enjoyed it very much. We had a beautiful day and got to see the Lighthouse at the end of the world. Falkland Islands we did the Bluff Cove Penguin Rookery. You can only get to this place if you book through the cruise ship, good tour. But,very, very windy. In fact most of South America is quite windy. Our next port of call was in Montevideo and we did not book anything here we just toured on our own, turned out fine. Next is Buenos Aires and we wanted to see the Colon Theatre, and our excursion through the cruise line was cancelled, so we took a taxi on our own (approx. $10 US and cab driver takes US $$) and went to the Theatre and took the tour. The tour was about $20/person you can pay with credit card) What a beautiful Theatre, very well worth the trip. Our next day we departed the ship and took their Buenos Aires Highlights and Tango Show with Airport Transfer. Since our flight was not until the evening this worked our just great and it was a good tour. The Buenos Aires Airport is a little bit confusing as there are insufficient signs as to where to go to your particular airline, had to ask, finally found what we needed. Most of the ports we visited would take American dollars, but if you don't have the correct change they will give you change in their currency. The ship will also exchange pesos/dollars for you, just not in larger amounts. The Casino on the ship is small, I mean small, really small, smallest I have seen and not a large variety of one armed bandits to play. Disembarkation off the ship worked well with no problems. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
We did this cruise before, we had a great time so we decided to do it again as there were some different ports. We ate in the Allegro dining room with Victoria and I Made as our servers. They were wonderful. Our Room steward was Edward ... Read More
We did this cruise before, we had a great time so we decided to do it again as there were some different ports. We ate in the Allegro dining room with Victoria and I Made as our servers. They were wonderful. Our Room steward was Edward A737 I can not say enough about him he was fantastic. If we needed anything, we just needed to ask him.Thanks for getting our TV fixed, also for all the tissues as we had colds. Now for some complaints for Princess. In Rio De Janeiro what were you thinking when you made your passengers walk so far in the heat to the buses. Did you not take into consideration we were old folks 65 +. A shuttle would have been a god sent in the heat. I said to my husband I wonder how many were going to have heart attacks today. Well!!!!!!! When we returned there was Princess with wheel chairs to help people. After getting to the terminal guess what was waiting for us, a shuttle bus to take us to the cruise ship.??????? Puerto Montt our tender, was#1return trip from tour. He was the only tender fellow that said to the passengers to sit down to let the people on the top of the Tender off first. I told him he was excellent. Please let the people with walkers off next. Hellooooo Princess have you been to the Tango Show in Buenos Aires. What a fire trap!!!! that place is. If there was a fire no one would have got out alive. I gave the Captain Nash a tea towel I had made to give to different people I met on the cruise. I was surprised he never asked us our names. Shore excursions I was so sick I had to go to the Dr. so I could get them to sign me off the next cruise. Why can the shore excursion people see we were sick????? Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Wanted to passage the Panama Canal again - to see the new larger locks that were being built the last time we passed this way - Holland America was recommended to us - we were disappointed at the poor meals - not much choice and constantly ... Read More
Wanted to passage the Panama Canal again - to see the new larger locks that were being built the last time we passed this way - Holland America was recommended to us - we were disappointed at the poor meals - not much choice and constantly had rice (which we are not keen on) - the expensive poor trips - some of which did not actually visit all the places listed. As the cruise went on - things that had really grated seemed less important - unlike many other cruise ships there were plenty of places to just sit and read. Thoughtful touches like snacks and drinks available outside the ship when on deck watching the entry and exit to the locks on the Panama Canal - a bit disappointed that the majority of our fellow guests did not seem to grasp that on 'Gala Nights' - you are supposed to dress up - many men wearing Beach shirts and shorts - amazing - very few men seemed to own jackets and certainly not ties ! The resident dancers and singers very good. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
We love to try the Royal Princess and a few of the countries it was first time visiting Loved everything and enjoyed every moment on the beautiful Royal Princess. Loved everything from sports activity to excursions dancing shows ... Read More
We love to try the Royal Princess and a few of the countries it was first time visiting Loved everything and enjoyed every moment on the beautiful Royal Princess. Loved everything from sports activity to excursions dancing shows participation playing games,Zumba walking on the track on the back of the ship. Loved to sun tanning on deck beside the pool, occasionally enjoy the hot tub on the sea days. Enjoyed very much the ceremony of the crossing the Equator it was so fun. The dining service was amazing enjoyed delicious dishes,beautiful displays of delicious desserts . We had three formal evenings I love to dress up and have champagne enjoyed that very much also enjoyed some of the art shows. Most enjoyable experience was when we arrived in Peru it was first time it seemed like a different world seeing the Candelabra from the excursion boat was amazing experience, and also Nicaragua was our first time amazing place beautiful people (we also loved La Serena Chile.) Loved all the cruise members of the Royal Princess. Thank you we had a wonderful trip. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Ports of call interesting.We havd never been to these countries on the Pacific side of South America.. Going this tome of year we expected, and received waem weather. Having sailed with Princess several times, with very positive results, ... Read More
Ports of call interesting.We havd never been to these countries on the Pacific side of South America.. Going this tome of year we expected, and received waem weather. Having sailed with Princess several times, with very positive results, we picked this itinerary. Being familiar with the Royal Princess, having sailed with her before, and having been told that she was refitted with new mattresses, new wi-fi, new Medallion sophistication our expectations were very high... We were given the wrong information.. With the exception of a few members of the crew, the staff was efficient but without personality. We seldom saw the ship's officers, common on most cruises. The captain was glib and amusing from the bridge. We laughed at his "rolly-poly to describe any rough weather. The entertainment was very good initially, but the last vocalists were not familiar with the passengers' preferences. Our biggest food problem was we found hair several times in our meals. Not what we expect from Princess Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
The cruise was chosen as part of travel package. I have cruises before, but this was the worst for the following reasons: - Lack of food choices and repetitive. They serve pasta and spaghetti with light sauce, lack of flavouring - ... Read More
The cruise was chosen as part of travel package. I have cruises before, but this was the worst for the following reasons: - Lack of food choices and repetitive. They serve pasta and spaghetti with light sauce, lack of flavouring - Entertainment all in Spanish (good for South American passengers) - Day of departure (must leave room by 8am) - Restaurants- can not chose where to sit and you get half hour slot to attend restaurant otherwise you will not enter. For instance, number 312 must attend dinner by 7-7:30pm. Furthermore, lido desk 9 all 5 restaurants serve same food - No English Channel on TV - You must pay tips at the end in American dollars, and must be on credit card. Coming from UK we only had debit card -Orange juice is waterly, and jo hot drink throughout the day apart from breakfast and afternoon tea at 4pm - Desk 2 is noisy and you hear music playing. It is annoying to hear at 11pm! Good: -Some islands were beautiful -We had nice guy who did the room -Gym - interior nice Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Chose this cruise, to take advantage of an extra 15% discount, being afforded to us, due to a cancelled cruise. Frankly I have read some snobby reviews, about this ship, it's staff, and the food. My wife and I were well pleased with ... Read More
Chose this cruise, to take advantage of an extra 15% discount, being afforded to us, due to a cancelled cruise. Frankly I have read some snobby reviews, about this ship, it's staff, and the food. My wife and I were well pleased with all of the above. We were surprised to learn, that this was a complimentary beverage sailing. We are not big drinkers, but got our money's worth from that perk. We have been on the Dawn Pearl Breakaway and now the sun. This ship is my personal favorite, and I wouldn't hesitate sailing on her again. I was also able to win a poker tournament while on board. Sometimes I wonder why some folks, feel the need to express their disappointment about trivial things. I have only cruised one other cruise line (Carnival), and will never do it again. Norwegian is and will be our preferred Cruise Line. We find their prices, value, ships and staff far exceed our expectations. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
The Delfin III was better than I expected - accommodations, food, service. - Cabin. Our cabin was quite large (unlike other small ship cruises I have been on), with a huge well supplied bathroom, king bed & enough room for us to ... Read More
The Delfin III was better than I expected - accommodations, food, service. - Cabin. Our cabin was quite large (unlike other small ship cruises I have been on), with a huge well supplied bathroom, king bed & enough room for us to store our clothes & luggage. The floor to ceiling window was great. The A/C worked very well & we needed it. - Service. The guides were very knowledgeable, helpful & friendly. The dining room was excellent. I was glad that there was a medic on board because I had intestinal issues that he helped me with. - Food. We enjoyed our meals - lots of variety & good quality. I like that they used locally sourced food. - Programs. The on-ship programs were not very interesting to me. - Excursions. Most of the excursions were on a skiff. I enjoyed the early morning one with breakfast served on the skiff. My favorite was the jungle hike - I wish we had more of these. The guides were particularly helpful on the hike. We also went to a local village which was somewhat interesting. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Excellent itinerary on the NCL Sun. Small ship for 14 days, but the itinerary is awesome. We did two days in Buenos Aires before the cruise (must do the hop on hop off bus) and then did two days in Santiago after the cruise. This is a ... Read More
Excellent itinerary on the NCL Sun. Small ship for 14 days, but the itinerary is awesome. We did two days in Buenos Aires before the cruise (must do the hop on hop off bus) and then did two days in Santiago after the cruise. This is a long vacation but do worth it. Ushuaia is awesome little town at the end of the world. Falkland Islands was fun. We did the 4x4 penguin tour which was excellent. Getting to see Cape Horn and the end of the continent. The Chilean fjords were awesome--balcony room is recommended for this cruise to see everything. The glaciers were also very nice. Pack your winter gear for that portion as it gets colder as you go south. The cruise ended in San Antonio and we had to pay $100 to get a private car to take us to our hotel in Santiago. Santiago is an interesting city with lots of recent history. Must see there is the Human Rights museum and take the funicular up to the Mary statue. On the ship, we ate at Le Bistro --nice -- and Los Lobos and La Cucina both twice Los Lobos had good mexican good and was never crowded. On the sun there is a sauna and steam room that you don't have to pay for. That was great for a 14 day cruise. Take advantage of it. The spa locker room is small as well as the relaxation area after your sauna. The buffet was normal and got boring after a week, but there is something for everyone--the buffet had some special ethnic nights which was good. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Great ports, especially the Falkland Islands. Puerto Madryn was not a good shore excursion because we drove for about 2 hours and saw about 20 seals from a cliff about 200 feet up, then about 20 penguins at a different spot from about 50 ... Read More
Great ports, especially the Falkland Islands. Puerto Madryn was not a good shore excursion because we drove for about 2 hours and saw about 20 seals from a cliff about 200 feet up, then about 20 penguins at a different spot from about 50 yards and at the last stop, about 10 elephant seals (all male) from about 100 yards. 15 minutes at each stop! Big mix up with our shore excursion billing which took two days to fix and no apology received! A couple of shore excursion staff were downright rude on several occasions, snapping at people and a very disorganized debarkation for shore excursions. We will do our own planning from now on. Rest of the crew were very friendly and efficient x they were a pleasure. A couple of shows were good, a couple were poor. The ships dancers, singers and band were excellent. Enjoyed the cruise other than some shore excursions. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Booked this cruise as a means to achieving a long held curiosity to see South America. By sailing this cruise from Buenos Aires to Santiago and following that up with the Santiago to Miami leg we were able to see a great deal if not the ... Read More
Booked this cruise as a means to achieving a long held curiosity to see South America. By sailing this cruise from Buenos Aires to Santiago and following that up with the Santiago to Miami leg we were able to see a great deal if not the full monty. Not much space to do justice to 30great days but I’ll try! The Sun is a small ship and did suffer because of this at times on the first leg on sea days. This was especially true of the buffet where spaces were frequently at a premium. Size also meant that the options for light dining at lunchtime were very limited. Sandwiches were limited to filled croissants and there were few cold meat options. By contrast I found the range of choice in the main dining room to be excellent. In 30 nights I never duplicated a main course choice and was never disappointed. Of the speciality restaurants if found La Cucina and Los Lobos to be very underwhelming, but Le Bistro was excellent. We thoroughly enjoyed the entertainment in the Windjammer, especially Kiefer Wiley, who always kept the party going. A young pianist, Walisson, had joined the ship’s crew at Buenos Aires so it was early days for him but he settled well and was well worth a pre dinner listen. We caught a performance by the ship’s singers in Bliss one evening. Backed simply by electric piano, they were superb and distinctly better than in the over amplified main theatre. The show and produced a similar quality performance at each of the Jazz Brunches we attended. Old adage if you’re good enough you don’t need to be loud. We didn’t use any of the ship’s excursions, joining fellow Cruise Critic members on a series of excellent trips. Not once were we in danger of missing departure and one of the early questions we were always asked was when does the ship leave? I’ll probably give a thorough review of each excursion on a post under South America Ports of Call. Special stand out mentions now however for Dennis Purtov at Puerto Montt and Patricia at Trujillo. We also had great experiences at Valparaiso, Coquimbo and Puerto Chacabuco. I have to say that embarkation at Buenos Aires was excellent. A clean, comfortable waiting hall, a speedy transition through check in and a good transfer by bus to the ship was a really good quality service. Compare that to the sloppy positioning of colour tag luggage, muddled exit pathways and haphazard progress through security at Miami and it was like being in two different worlds... and it wasn’t the third world country that was shown up! Just an extra point of minority interest. It was so nice to be able to run on the Promenade deck and not feel guilty. Runners don’t have to feel compelled to run on treadmills in a humid gym or up on an exposed top deck. We made so many new friends on this trip and hope to meet up again some time. A lot of that was down to a really active Cruise Critic Roll Call, so thanks for making it all such a great trip! Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
We had already booked a 12 day Galápagos Adventure with another company. Our travel agent suggested the Aria post cruise as we were already in South America! The Aria is state of the art, gourmet food, 4 enthusiastic knowlegable guides, ... Read More
We had already booked a 12 day Galápagos Adventure with another company. Our travel agent suggested the Aria post cruise as we were already in South America! The Aria is state of the art, gourmet food, 4 enthusiastic knowlegable guides, and adventures galore. Imagine breakfast floating on the Amazon, paddling a dugout canoe with a tarantula swimming alongside, Mimosas in a skiff at sunset and nighttime searches for anacondas! I kid you not! It is worth every cent and memories will remain forever! Please do not buy Jaguar handbags from the locals. You cannot bring them back through customs! But do buy their silver jewellery, fruits, nuts and beaded earrings. Customs also confiscated spices, seed necklaces and bracelets. The Aria Amazon had a great little gift shop with a tasteful selection of both costume and expensive jewellery at fair prices. Meant to have a massage but no time! Be sure to attend cooking class and a Pisco Sour workshop! Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Having read so many bad reviews about Magellan we were very surprised and delighted that we enjoyed our cruise so much. The ship was a proper old fashioned, lovely vehicle and so much nicer than those ghastly things which look like a block ... Read More
Having read so many bad reviews about Magellan we were very surprised and delighted that we enjoyed our cruise so much. The ship was a proper old fashioned, lovely vehicle and so much nicer than those ghastly things which look like a block of flats on a barge. We found our cabin very adequate and it was kept scrupulously clean by our delightful steward Putu. Shower was excellent and endless clean towels. The food and service we found to be excellent and lots of choice and everything very crisp and fresh. We found all staff very very kind and helpful and cleanliness throughout the shop was faultless. We were not very interested in entertainment as we love sea watching and sky watching and reading so could entertain ourselves.The ship seemed very buzzy and fun though if one wanted entertainment. We would have liked more information about where we were at sea and maybe maps. We were not very happy with one of our excursions and found staff not very able to deal with this and the other people who complained. Dealt with now. A small complaint about an altogether great value and very very lovely cruise. Cannot wait for the next one already booked. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
This cruise itinerary was great plus there was an excellent deal for solo passengers. I booked an inside and was upgraded to an outside cabin, L shaped beds, but a reasonable size, with shower, a decent size. It was set up for someone with ... Read More
This cruise itinerary was great plus there was an excellent deal for solo passengers. I booked an inside and was upgraded to an outside cabin, L shaped beds, but a reasonable size, with shower, a decent size. It was set up for someone with mobility issues, extra handles in the shower room and a pull down seat in the shower, but these didn't get in the way at all. Shower/hair gell and conditioner were in two containers in the shower plus small bars of soap were provided. A kettle with tea/coffee was provided in the cabin plus a TV (but no BBC world service just a French channel giving news in English?). There was no daily newspaper to catch up on the news available as I had always had on other ships. The first two days was open sitting at dinner time with no allocated table which a lot of people didn't like (I didn't mind), then I was allocated a table but given the time of between 6-8 pm so after people joining at different times, my table agreed a time for us all to come, so that worked well. For a solo there were a lot of get togethers but I found I met a lot of people, just by chatting to whoever sat next to me. The jacuzzi was always sociable. I did a couple of ship excursions which were well managed, as you would expect, and priced reasonably £38 for a half day. The shows were ok and due to the numbers on board, there was only the one around 9pm, then another entertainment around 10pm. Quizzes were generally at 9.30 and 4pm and well attended (It was obvious some people do lots of quizzes as they regularly won). We didn't have a message from the captain at noon, which I enjoyed on other ships. There was one gala night (usual shake hands with the Captain, photo then into lounge followed by introduction to staff) and another evening termed 'elegant' the rest were casual though most men wore shirts and trousers and ladies smart trousers and tops, or dresses. Sea days there was usually a lecture (I found them so so) a creative writing session (this was great fun, really enjoyed this), deck games and a fitness session, plus the quizzes and other get togethers. Embarkation seemed a bit mixed, after an eleven and a half flight, I just wanted to get on the ship and it wasn't clear whether we had to take our own cases from the coach or not. Disembarkation worked well. I bought the Premier package before boarding which paid for gratuities, most cocktails and other drinks on board (not speciality coffees) and a small bottle of water. There was also a bottle of wine as part of this. This was reasonably priced and just made things easy for me as a solo to have a drink when I wanted. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Last minute cruise with interesting itinerary; however travellers beware, you get what you pay for. The ship has limited facilities for pleasure on sea days; the entertainment was poor at the best of times. The excursions were not great ... Read More
Last minute cruise with interesting itinerary; however travellers beware, you get what you pay for. The ship has limited facilities for pleasure on sea days; the entertainment was poor at the best of times. The excursions were not great value for money and were limited. Excursion staff had limited knowledge and did not understand you as their English was limited. This also applies to the reception crew. If you wanted to lose weight on a cruise this is the one to go on; the food was extremely poor with limited choice and odd combinations of food were put together. What the chef described as a cheese and onion tart was in fact a slice of quiche served with parsley sauce. The chef obviously lacked imagination and flair and did not have an educated palette for flavours. I am well aware of food recycling to ensure budgets are met; however I think bread and butter pudding or a combination of different egg custards everyday can get boring especially when lacking flavour. The best meal of the day was breakfast; however even a microwave technician can cook an egg. On a positive note the superior outside cabin was comfortable and clean. Cabin boys diligent in their work ethic. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
We enjoyed the 49-day cruise in 2015 and decided to do this 30-day cruise. It is almost the same itinerary, beginning at Buenos Aires, but without Brazil. Good cruise, especially having Michele Tuvo as the Captain. He is the best we ... Read More
We enjoyed the 49-day cruise in 2015 and decided to do this 30-day cruise. It is almost the same itinerary, beginning at Buenos Aires, but without Brazil. Good cruise, especially having Michele Tuvo as the Captain. He is the best we have ever had! He was very good about telling the passengers when there were whales, dolphins, turtles, etc around the ship. The Captain was out-and-about the ship daily and readily interacted with the passengers. He always ends his announcements with "...nevertheless, Bye bye!" It is unfortunate that Princess does not provide a Bridge Director on cruises any longer. There were 6 sea days on the Buenos Aires to Santiago leg, and 9 sea days on the Santiago to LA leg. The food selections could have been better. There were a number of nights we chose to eat in Horizon Court rather than the dining room because there was nothing appealing on the menu. The deserts are especially disappointing. They look pretty but are mostly tasteless. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
We chose this cruise for the itinerary. That part was very good. Ship was obviously very pretty at one point but looking a little shop worn now and the food dept need a total overhaul. Staff (outside of the front desk and a few ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the itinerary. That part was very good. Ship was obviously very pretty at one point but looking a little shop worn now and the food dept need a total overhaul. Staff (outside of the front desk and a few waitstaff) were very friendly and helpful with smiles and greetings abounding. Captain was out and about every day and made it clear he was happy you chose his ship!. There was always something going on in the atrium and it was extremely loud. To the point that you could not find places to sit and read or converse. The entertainment and activities were well-thought out and varied, however evening shows often seemed to be trying to hard and did not have that "spark'. Small venues were the exception. Many good musicians to be found there. We chose anytime dining and sat with others. Were always seated promptly and usually had the table fill quickly. Service was good except for coffee or tea. That took forever to get and often needed several promptings to get it. They usually forgot the lemons etc. Food was mediocre at best. Steaks and roast seldom done to correct temps. Gristle and fat thru them. Sauces overdone and heavy. Menus rather limited and buffet had little variety. Some deserts were excellent, however, as a diabetic, I had no choices and the one sugar-free offering each day was usually not good. Our cabin steward was fabulous and knew our names by end of 1st day - impressive ! Embarkation and disembarkation was very smooth as were excursion activities. Best I have ever seen. Efficient and effective. Liked the wash stations in buffet rather than the disinfectant, excellent idea. Front desk had a rather surly and poorly trained staff, who rather than say "I don't know" responded incorrectly or just said that it can't be done. Purser made crediting error within the two travelers in our cabin (we had fully seperate credit cards on file etc) and refused to fix it Claimed they could not and we should just write each other a personal check to fix it. Overall, we had a wonderful time as always, met some terrific people, saw new parts of the world and are very happy we took this trip. Next time, however, we will chose a different and less expensive line.. (everything is a la carte with charges on this line until you get to elite level) Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
We loved our month long cruise from Buenos Airies to LA. We had a starboard room and it was the bomb. As we sailed around the point, we had amazing views of the Chilean Andes. The crew was wonderful but the Chef should retire. Sadly, ... Read More
We loved our month long cruise from Buenos Airies to LA. We had a starboard room and it was the bomb. As we sailed around the point, we had amazing views of the Chilean Andes. The crew was wonderful but the Chef should retire. Sadly, this is the only PrincessCruise where the food wasn’t consistent. Plus, can’t you come up with something other than 27 days of vanilla sauce on the dessert bar? The International Cafe was also a huge miss on this boat. No hot and fresh almond croissants in the morning. Bummer - probably great for my waist. They had to also go to the kitchen to fill your plate and not take it from the case. Not sure why but this really slowed down the process. The shows were so great and we were in love with various guitarists. Movies under the stars were all very good and many very current titles. Other than the food inconsistency, everything else was amazing. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019

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