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2,369 South America Cruise Reviews

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
La ville de départ était Buenos Aires. Il était très difficile de visiter cette ville en taxi car la circulation est toujours arrêtée et le temps pour le faire est trop court. L'embarquement se passe bien, mais ... Read More
La ville de départ était Buenos Aires. Il était très difficile de visiter cette ville en taxi car la circulation est toujours arrêtée et le temps pour le faire est trop court. L'embarquement se passe bien, mais l'atterrissage est pour moi en fauteuil roulant. Je frappe un accroc. Le personnel du bateau n'a pas compris qu'avec mes sacs à dos je voulais débarquer. Passant ensuite à la douane de San Antonio, le transfert du port que j’avais payé très cher n’était pas présent. Ce fut difficile et long de négocier un transport pour moi. Le navire est généralement accessible en fauteuil roulant, la cabine aussi. La nourriture, 3 étoiles. Les animations et spectacles sont nombreux mais certains sont médiocres. Pour les ports et les excursions pour une personne en fauteuil roulant, sont très difficiles et parfois impossibles. Je m'interroge sur les transferts en petit bateau du Star Princess au quai. Que croyez vous qu'il va se passer? Est-ce que je coule avec le capitaine? Je ne retournerai jamais à bord de ce navire. The departure city was Buenos Aires. It was very difficult to visit this city by taxi since the traffic is always stopped and the time to do it before the departure is too short. The boarding is all well, but landing for me who is in a wheelchair. I hit some snag. The boat staff did not understand that with my backpacks I wanted to disembark. Then after passing through the San Antonio Customs, the transfer from the port to the airport that I had paid at a high price was not present. It was difficult and long to negotiate a transport for me. The ship in general is well accessible in wheelchairs, the cabin too. The food, 3 stars. Entertainment activities and shows are plentiful but some are mediocre. For ports and excursions for a person in a wheelchair, are very difficult and sometimes impossible. I wonder about the small boat transfers from the Star Princess to the dock. If a person like me who can not stand does not have the right to board these tenders, what happens if a storm forces the evacuation of the ship, I sink with the captain? I will never go back on board this ship. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
We are a group of 3 couples that enjoy taking longer bucket list type trips such as Russia Scandinavia and Australia to name a few. We all have over 10 cruiises under our belts and usually use both princess and celebrity depending on the ... Read More
We are a group of 3 couples that enjoy taking longer bucket list type trips such as Russia Scandinavia and Australia to name a few. We all have over 10 cruiises under our belts and usually use both princess and celebrity depending on the itinerary we wish to do. we always pick upper priced cabins ( aqua class on celebrity and mini suites on princess. For this trip we all were in club class mini suites. Just for demographic purposes we range in age from mid 60 to mid 70. since this trip was such a long way from our homes we elected to arrive in Argentina 5 days early to visit Iguazú falls and spend time in Buenos Aires before departing. The falls were pretty spectacular we stayed at the Melia in the park (pricy but well worth it) . We did all the normal tourist stuff in BA such as recoleta, a visit to an estancia among others. I independently. Arranged most of our ground tours thru a travel agent in Argentina who then contracted all the guides ect which worked out well for us got us private tours and was much less than the ship offerings. Since I regularly folllow these forums and reviews prior to leaving I was a little concerned about the ship and some of the issues raised. As in anything everyone is going to have different views and experiences of the same things so the following comments are my quick general observations The ship is very well kept up but not the new glitzy style some folks like.because of that there was not a large amount of shopping and the venues are smaller. There were 4 production shows all very well done again not the full broadway variety. We were fine with that and enjoyed them all. We were in mini suite d502 a club class mini. Beds were great room steward Ricky Did a wonderful job, the shower worked so we were happy.Just a note the pull out sofa was very uncomfortable to sit on so be warned it may not be great for sleeping. we used anytime club class dining and in my opinion it was great. We had the same staff for all meals, Jon,Arlene and frabrizio were as good a team as we have ever had on any trip. The food was very good, there was plenty and even though I am picky I managed to find something every night. we enjoyed this dining so much we never made it to a specialty dining room. Did not eat in the buffet either. we were very fortunate that captain Tuvo rejoined the ship in ba and took us around the horn. Anyone that has had the pleasure us sailing with him will tell you that because of his great personality and accessibility he is the best, we concur, he and his officers made this trip very memorable. Just an FYI he will be one of the 2 captains to take over duties on the new sky princess as prior reported just a small comment deforestation closing, sometimes people feel that an outstanding review means the reviewer is a cheerleader for the line. In my case I usually call it as I see it and do not hesitate to be very critical if nesessary. Perhaps on this trip all the stars aligned but we really had a pretty flawless experience overall Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
We chose the 30-night cruise from Buenos Aires to LA because of the itinerary, this and not cruise line loyalty, is our main reason for choosing cruises. It was our second cruise with Princess. The itinerary was great, we were able to ... Read More
We chose the 30-night cruise from Buenos Aires to LA because of the itinerary, this and not cruise line loyalty, is our main reason for choosing cruises. It was our second cruise with Princess. The itinerary was great, we were able to visit every port which apparently is unusual, we heard that several earlier cruises had missed some of the southernmost ports due to weather conditions. The ship: Although a little older, is well maintained and comfortable. Our inside cabin was on the small side though storage space was good. On other cruises the cabin has been large enough to accommodate a small sofa as well as a chair. Here we only had one chair which meant that one of us had to sit on the bed. The bathroom was also slightly smaller than on other cruise lines. The theatre had insufficient seating for the number of guests, some guests broke the rules and saved seats. We learned to go early and take a book. The Horizon Court Buffet was also short on seating as was the Piazza area around the International Café, especially as we weren’t allowed to take food up Level 7 were there was more seating. Staff: The Captain, Michele Tuvo, was very personable. Probably the best we’ve come across. Our cabin steward, Geordie, was friendly and efficient. Most of the restaurant staff were great, with the exception of some of the buffet staff. At breakfast they were quick to offer coffee or juice but didn’t like being asked for tea. They then brought it to us complete with teabags, too strong and nowhere to put the teabags. The Shore Excursions staff were helpful and well organised. In fact, I had no real complaints about any of the staff except for some of those in Passenger Services, some were good, others rude and unhelpful. Interesting that earlier commentators have said the same – take note Princess Cruises. Food: We ate breakfast in the Horizon Court Buffet and would have liked a little more variety. Often there was only one type of yoghurt and only one type of fruit compote. The system for ordering omelettes was crazy. We only tried it once and after much confusion we ended with a cool and dry result. On other ships and in hotels they make them while you watch and wait. Most of the other hot food was OK but Princess need to find another brand of English bacon. For lunches onboard we alternated between the Horizon Court and the dining room. The food in the dining room was mostly good though the menu was somewhat uninspired. Food in the Horizon Court varied between very good and very bad. A couple of times we went to Prego Pizzeria which was good though the choice was limited. We mainly ate dinner in the Capri Anytime Dining restaurant where we usually shared a table and enjoyed chatting to a variety of people. Food here was mostly very good though some items were rather insipid and there were one or two disasters, e.g. the Yorkshire pudding and a couple of poor quality steaks. We found that the menus were repeated over the 30 days. Entertainment: The guest lecturers were great; the Port Lecturer was funny and informative while the Enrichment Lecturer was knowledgeable and interesting. The guest entertainers were a mixed bag, some good, some not so good. Some gave two or more performances using different material but we avoided repeats if we hadn’t enjoyed their first show. Production shows were a bit of a letdown, they lacked the sparkle of those we’d seen on other ships. I fell asleep in a couple but was able to catch them the second time around as they were performed twice over the 30 day period. Excursions: We joined Princess excursions in most of the ports. We found them to be on the expensive side but they were well organised and most of them were very good. We found the one in Santiago to be poor, we viewed the centre of town from the coach window as the bus drove through, no chance to stop and wander. We also got whisked away from lunch before the included folk show had finished. Puerto Vallarta was also bad with a guide who complained incessantly then demanded tips. We were given only a short time at the things worth seeing and a long time at jewellery and tequila shopping opportunities. Would we cruise with Princess again? Maybe, maybe not, it will depend on itinerary and price. So far Celebrity has been the best of the cruise lines we’ve used. We still have two to come, one with Cunard and one with NCL. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
We chose this cruise for the ports and was not disappointed as we got to go to all the ports listed on this itinerary. We had good weather going round Cape Horn. We were lucky to have Captain Michelle Tuvo who has a great sense of humor ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the ports and was not disappointed as we got to go to all the ports listed on this itinerary. We had good weather going round Cape Horn. We were lucky to have Captain Michelle Tuvo who has a great sense of humor and very visable around the ship as well as very informative taking us on this cruise. We saw penguins, sea lions,sea turtles, dolphins etc. Cabin was nice and spacious with a new TV as well as the new beds. Our cabins steward was good always friendly and checked if we needed anything. We opted for anytime dinning which was good. Breakfast in the dnning room was a hit and miss. Some days it seemed like the waiters just couldn't cope even though the restaurant was not full. Food was good but the deserts in the Horizon Buffet standard has dropped. The entertainment was fair nothing oustanding. Expected more Latin American entertainment. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
The outside of this ship is well designed. Not so the inside. First the good stuff. If you like to walk a ship's promenade deck, this one is very nice. It's wide and goes all the way around the ship if you climb a few stairs, ... Read More
The outside of this ship is well designed. Not so the inside. First the good stuff. If you like to walk a ship's promenade deck, this one is very nice. It's wide and goes all the way around the ship if you climb a few stairs, giving you great 360 views of the sea and sky. You can do the same on deck 16, also with a few stairs. The inside is different story. The design is flawed, mainly because of the way the spaces are chopped up, especially in the buffet area. Many activities occur in the atrium, but only about 100 people (out of 3000) can actually see what's going on. Deck six is chopped in a way that makes you go up, and then down a flight of stairs to the dining room. But the biggest fiasco is the poorly designed buffet. If you TRIED to design the most inconvenient buffet possible, you might not come close to this one. You just have to see for yourself. I have been on maybe 20 ships, and have never seen such a poor layout of food service and seating areas. We missed both seafood buffet and the big dessert buffet because it was held in the back portion of the buffet, and no info was posted or announced anywhere. It is a mystery to me that anyone would have ever approved such a poor design. One very positive thing that deserves mention is the sound levels of music and background noise on the ship. The crew and sound people seemed to be very professional and kept volumes at an appropriate level everywhere. In the theater, sound levels always seemed loud enough and without distortion. I mention this because many ships just don't pay attention to this and I have seen poor sound engineers ruin a perfectly good talented performance with distorted volume levels and background music. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
On this cruise, Celebrity got the formula exactly right. Great ports, great food, great accommodations, excellent service and spectacular entertainment! What more could you ask for! This was by far the best cruise we’ve ever taken. ... Read More
On this cruise, Celebrity got the formula exactly right. Great ports, great food, great accommodations, excellent service and spectacular entertainment! What more could you ask for! This was by far the best cruise we’ve ever taken. We’ve sailed with Royal Caribbean, Princess and Celebrity in the past and although each cruise has it’s positive and negative points, we’ve found Celebrity to be the best. CHECK IN: We read all the negative reviews about check in and were concerned. There was no need to be. Celebrity was extremely well organized on this cruise and check-in was a breeze. We received email confirmations about staggered check in times. Each deck was assigned a specific check in time, starting from the top deck downward, and the lines moved quickly. DINING: Overall, meals on board were of good quality. Concierge Class were given a delicious lunch in the main dining room on embarkation day. Although we were aware of this, we were not given the time of the lunch until we had checked in. Saved us from braving the masses at the Oceanview Cafe on embarkation day. We avoided eating at Oceanview mainly for that reason. We chose instead to eat all our meals (including breakfast) in either the main dining room or the specialty restaurants. The Main dining room offered a good variety of choices and service was also good. We tried all the specialty restaurants and the quality, menu choices and service were all superb. They were well worth the additional cost. ENTERTAINMENT: Again, don’t believe all the negative reviews you’ve read. On this particular Celebrity ship, entertainment was superb. The shows each night in the theatre were spectacular. The best we’ve ever experienced on any cruise. The cruise director Giuseppe was young, energetic and had a great sense of humor. His ability to engage the crowd, as well as make things fun and light hearted, are unmatched. He was by far the best cruise director we’ve had on any cruise we’ve taken. EXCURSIONS: Overall, the choice and quality of excursions were disappointing and pricing steep. Better communication, directions and signage would be helpful. CLEANLINESS: Overall good, but could use some improvement. Tables in common areas were obviously not wiped down regularly. Rings and stains from drinks and food were still visible. In addition, young Captain Leo was the most visible and personable of all the Captains on past cruises we’ve taken. It was really nice to see him and the rest of his team engaging and interacting with other passengers. All in all, it was a wonderful cruise and we would definitely recommend and sail with Celebrity again. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
I chose the Celebrity Eclipse because I wanted to do its 3 back-to-back South America cruises. So it was the itinerary that was the draw. The ship is beautiful and comfortable.I cannot imagine how its upcoming renovation could make ir ... Read More
I chose the Celebrity Eclipse because I wanted to do its 3 back-to-back South America cruises. So it was the itinerary that was the draw. The ship is beautiful and comfortable.I cannot imagine how its upcoming renovation could make ir any nicer. The crew, from Captain Leo (probably the most visible captain in my cruising experience) to every person working onboard, was excellent....and genunely nice people. My personal favourite was the solo guitarist, Sashi, a charming young woman from Indonesia,with not only a beautiful voice, but also a beautiful personality. She's the whole package and my day was never complete without taking in one of her sets. I'm not really sure what else to add, but I can say that I could have stayed onboard forever. The cabin - and I just had a large inside cabin on the 9th deck - was comfortable, clean and well laid-out. The food at the Oceanview Cafe was a terrific buffet-style restaurant. And the in-house entertainers are so, so talented. This is the first cruise during which I took in every show. In sum, the Celebrity Eclipse has my highest recommendations. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
Firstly, we are not cruisers and chose this cruise because we wanted to visit South America for the first time. On immediate embarkation we were met with a fairly hard sell with regard to drink and dining packages. A lot of people had ... Read More
Firstly, we are not cruisers and chose this cruise because we wanted to visit South America for the first time. On immediate embarkation we were met with a fairly hard sell with regard to drink and dining packages. A lot of people had been travelling for 20 + hours and we questioned whether this was really necessary at that time. It just seemed a money making exercise. Surely, it might be better to charge more for the cruise in the first instance. There are no tea and coffee making facilities in the cabin and people were going to the restaurant and returning to their cabin with cups of hot water/tea/coffee. In terms of safety, we couldn't see the logic of this. Our cabin on the Deck 8 was good - plenty of storage and an unrestricted view. Our cabin steward - Jon, was excellent. He couldn't help us enough. Unfortunately, on our last days at sea we both contracted a gastrointestinal illness. We had been ashore on an excursion earlier in the day but had eaten and drank very little indeed - only bottled water. We called the Medical Centre and despite mentioning it in the daily bulletin of Sunday, 3rd March that "a member of the medical staff will be seeing you in your stateroom" we were told that someone would collect us in a wheelchair. I visited the surgery twice and my husband once - I was in isolation for 24 hours and my husband for 48 hours. My experience of the surgery was poor. Admittedly, it was 1.30 am but all the staff really seemed interested in, was me signing a disclaimer having had an injection for repeated sickness. I was just left with little instruction re medication and wheeled back to my cabin. At 1.30 am you cannot remember how many times you have been ill and they seemed to insist on a number. The nurse, Bernadette, the next day was very abrupt and I really felt, I was just too much trouble. The Receptionist on duty at the surgery in the morning, was, however, helpful. Customer Relations were good but they sent a letter to my husband when his isolation was over to say they hoped he was better after suffering from the flu. The Medical Centre certainly needs to improve. A lot of the food is warm at best and some improvement needs to take place. The Ocean View restaurant is more like a canteen and not a good experience in my view. The staff in the main are excellent and very pleasant. We enjoyed the talks by the Captain and we thought the entertainment director was brilliant. The entertainment was good but could be improved. Certainly, the show re the tea cup was lost on a lot of people, including myself. We enjoyed the excursions but the PA system was not working for Christ Redeemer trip and this was a pity. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
Couldn’t pass up this amazing deal to do an 11-day balcony cruise to 3 countries in South America, including 3 days at Carnival in Rio, for only about $950! The Eclipse was recently remodeled, and the rooms and public spaces are ... Read More
Couldn’t pass up this amazing deal to do an 11-day balcony cruise to 3 countries in South America, including 3 days at Carnival in Rio, for only about $950! The Eclipse was recently remodeled, and the rooms and public spaces are beautiful. We’ve done 45 cruises and Guiseppi, at only 26 years old was probably the best cruise director we’ve ever had. He really was made for this job. The captain was one of the most visible we’ve ever seen, attending many events and chatting with everyone. He gave great reports from the bridge twice a day. The theater shows and live music were of extremely high quality. We loved the dancers 4 singers and Cirque-quality acrobatics. Keep that up and we’ll be back lots of times. We love eating in the main dining room and our two waiters were great. Although the quality of the food is down the past few years, Celebrity still has the best dining room food of the standard cruise lines. We appreciated having lobster in the main dining room, even if only one night. Formal nights are gone, for better or worse. Stateroom attendant was very efficient and charming, though they need to replace those horrible do not disturb signs that always end up on the floor. Having great internet really makes a difference and I was more than happy to pay for it. Apple internet center was nice, but should be staffed more often. Beautiful library but need more travel books. The Captains Club host forgot to call us and never sent us info about special events, so we missed all of them. That needs to be much better organized. Would like to have booked a future cruise, but there never seemed to be anyone available, and when there finally was the promotion offered the first few days was over. A lot of folks complained about this and it was a real lost opportunity for the cruise line. Pool, gym and spa were all in the top 10%. The always seemed to be reducing the the buffet just as it got busy, causing long lines. We found it difficult to get a clean table and almost impossible to get a drink from anyone on the buffet level. Port staff was good, but the port terminals in South America were horrible, usually requiring long bus rides just to get from the ship to the terminal and back. Security staff were great. We loved being at Carnival. If you buy tix at right place, you can get decent seats for $19. Don’t pay $600 to get them from the ship. Unfortunately, Rio during Carnival is a difficult place. Everything is boarded up, including every ATM machine, due to roving wild crowds. Everything is closed and most tours are cancelled. We did find a reasonably priced tour to see Impanema, Copacabana, Christ the Redeemer statue and Sugarloaf Mountain. That and going to carnival added up to one wild day. But one day in Rio would have been enough. We never really felt unsafe, but it’s pretty wild vibe if you are over 30; even the locals don’t take their kids out. Unfortunately, the port at São Paulo is 2 hours each way from the city, too far to be practical for an excursion. But Santos port is a nice little city and trying hard to be fun for tourists. We really enjoyed the Coffee Museum, the Pele Museum and the trolley. Montevideo was fun and we did the free walking tour there. Buzios is the St. Bart’s of Brazil, but at 1/2 the price. Don’t pay for expensive ship excursions. Right at the tender port you can get a ship to take you to all 17 beaches with swim and snorkeling stops at three of them and a free drink for $15-20. Buenos Aires is one of the most beautiful cities I’ve seen. Almost as nice as Paris, but cleaner and literally 1/4 the price. Do any of the free walking tours, which can be found on the internet. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
One of our best cruises ever. We have been on 4 cruises with Celebrity, twice on Reflection and now twice on Eclipse. ANd this cruise was just amazing. The ship was perfect, the crew fantastic, great entertainment and from the top (Captain ... Read More
One of our best cruises ever. We have been on 4 cruises with Celebrity, twice on Reflection and now twice on Eclipse. ANd this cruise was just amazing. The ship was perfect, the crew fantastic, great entertainment and from the top (Captain Leo and CD Gioseppe) to our cabin attendant etc. was top top noch. Food was great in Luminae and BLU and spec. restaurants. To all the hardworking people in the Martini Bar, Luminae, Michaels Club, Guests relation, FUTURE cruises, Murano, Qsine (Le petit chef), pool area, pool bar, entertainment, orchestra Ocean View Cafe, El Bacio Security people, THANK you so much for your hard work. You are the reason that we will continue to book Celebrity cruises. And to see RIO during carnival was fantastic - you really cant imagine how big it is, until you are there and discover it yourself. Think we might be back one day. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
I recently returned from a wonderful cruise on the Stella Australis. This was my first cruise and I must confess I absolutely loved it. It was an adventure of a lifetime being in Patagonia and relatively so close to Antarctica ! We ... Read More
I recently returned from a wonderful cruise on the Stella Australis. This was my first cruise and I must confess I absolutely loved it. It was an adventure of a lifetime being in Patagonia and relatively so close to Antarctica ! We embarked at Ushuaia (Argentina), which was a quaint little town (stopped one night prior to my departure). Very scenic and plenty of stores to stock up ahead of your cruise. Then we set off heading towards Punta Arenas, Chile, as our ultimate destination. The ship was immaculate, clean, thoroughly hygienic. I occupied a cabin on the 2nd floor and there are a total of 4 floors for cabins. It's a small cruise ship (~166 passengers) and this actually proved great since by the end of the week you pretty much knew the majority of folks on a first name basis. Average age was around 60+ and predominantly comprised of retired couples from North America i.e. University Alumni tours, along with a sprinkling of European countries such as Italy, France, Germany. I was a solo traveler, there were not too many of us, but we were certainly made to feel welcome and constantly invited to join other tours for drinks etc. Each day/night for breakfast, lunch & dinner you are seated with the same people for the entire duration. Initially, I was a tad worried about this, but I absolutely loved my table companions and we have since exchanged emails to keep in touch. Everyone was exceptionally friendly and outgoing. The cruise is structured as follows: Each day you visit a new location and conduct excursions using the Zodiac boats, for example visiting Glaciers, Cape Horn and the highlight for me Magdalena island to see the famous Magellan penguins . - they were superb! Somedays comprised of 2 excursions per day. A typical excursion was a landing via Zodiac on the beach or coastline, then split into 3 groups based on your level of fitness and interest in the local fauna and Geology. For example, I love to run long distance and hike so each day i took the most challenging hikes. They were very demanding and certainly at times quite treacherous on the slippery rocks and grass but we were always safe on account of the excellent trained staff who accompanied you on all excursions. The staff were exceptionally knowledgeable on the local wildlife and Geology and always made the trips a great deal of fun! There were also hikes that didn't require much exercise and elderly people with walking sticks and who required assistance typically took these hikes. It was wonderful to complete one of the excursions and to be greeted on the beach by one of the staff handing out whisky and hot chocolate = delicious and warm. In terms of day to day activities on the boat, it mainly comprised of relaxing and watching the world go by with a drink or two. There is a fifth floor deck bar (all inclusive alcohol and soft drinks) which was superb! Each morning on the fourth floor Sky Lounge, tea, coffee and snacks were provided around 6am for the early risers - I really appreciated this nice touch. Each evening lectures of the following day excursions were provided and this really helped give you an appreciation of where you are visiting. The food on the cruise was excellent. Varied menu, typically 3 courses (all inclusive) and so many deserts to choose from it was ridiculous :) The waiters were very friendly and often chatted at the tables during meal times. In terms of the excisions, the staff ran this process like a machine and height of efficiency. They assisted all those who needed help getting in and out of the Zodiac. One cannot stress enough, the need for waterproof clothing, gloves, woolly hat and solid hiking boots. You will definitely get muddy if you opt for the more strenuous hikes so be prepared to have a change of clothes each day. The cabins were cleaned thoroughly each day, and new towels provided as one might expect in a hotel. Water was drinkable on the ship. It was very relaxing to watch the world go by in my cabin each morning and realize we were in a new location. All in all i cannot fault this cruise I thoroughly recommend it ! Huge shout out to "Vicky" and Emmanuel - very helpful, knowledgeable and humorous guides. Oh don't forget your camera iPhone will suffice for majority of excursions but i found an SLR with Zoom lens to be extremely beneficial for Magdalena island and close up of penguins One point to note, this is NOT a cruise for young children, they will literally be bored to tears, plus the excursions and getting on and off Zodiacs could be a tad risky for them. There is no WiFi or Cell service or TV/Games for them. It's definitely not one of the Disney type cruises that they might expect. I have 3 children and they would have been very bored on this - I feel it's fair to mention, it much more applicable to Adults who wish to experience an adventure of a lifetime, learn about Patagonia, history and Geology and get away from all the pressures of work and social media nonsense etc. Enjoy! Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
Heading north to Brazil from Buenos Aires on the 2nd leg of our cruise, we made another stop at Montevideo. This allowed us to explore some of the museums such as the Government House in depth with exhibits of Uruguayan history. The ... Read More
Heading north to Brazil from Buenos Aires on the 2nd leg of our cruise, we made another stop at Montevideo. This allowed us to explore some of the museums such as the Government House in depth with exhibits of Uruguayan history. The “Azamazing Evening” tonight was at the Teatro Solis – one of the early opera houses in South America. The show was developed and staged just for Azamara. Our next stop was Santos – the seaport for San Paulo and the largest city in the western hemisphere. We decided not to take the two hour drive to San Paulo and saw the local sights in Santos including the coffee auction house (coffee was the major export here in the past) and the funicular to the former casino atop Monte Serrat. (Gambling was outlawed in the 40's.) We stopped at Ilhabela (“beautiful island”) once a hideout of smugglers and pirates. We stopped at the Agua Branca waterfall that once supplied electricity to the region. Our next stop was Buzios – a beach peninsula not far from Rio originally a shipment point for gold to Portugal and later frequented by Bridget Bardot and her Brazilian boyfriend. It was here that the paparazzi spotted her and put the place on the jet set map. Also saw where South America and Africa split into separate continents hundreds of million years ago We spent three days in Rio de Janeiro during the final days of Carnival. After docking in perhaps the most scenic harbor in the world, in addition to the mandatory sights – Sugar Loaf mountain, Corcovado (Christ the Redeemer), Ipanema and Copacabana beaches – we did tour the center of the city. The highlight was the final night of Carnival at the Sambadrome – a once in a lifetime experience not to be missed. Starting at 9 p.m. and continuing until 7 a.m., seven samba schools compete for the top prize. Each group consisting of up to four or five thousand people have an hour to parade. Each group has several elaborate floats, marching bands and dancers. We then sailed back to Buenos Aires for another day of touring on our own through downtown and stopping at an art museum in Recoleta. As beautiful as Buenos Aires still is, it is sad to see the gradual decline even in the last ten years. Rampant inflation has caused closing of the zoo. Many rich in Recoleta can’t afford to garage their cars so they park them on the streets. A newspaper headline noted that inflation had been 7% in a recent week. We then flew to Iguazu Falls near the border of Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay. It consists of about 270 mostly double cataract falls stretching for around a mile. From the Argentinean side, it took all day to see the myriad viewpoints, primarily looking down at the falls. The second day was spent on the Brazilian side looking up at the highlights such as Devils Throat. Compared with Niagara Falls (Canada & US - short) and Victoria Falls (Zimbabwe Africa – too misty to see at high water) ), Iguazu tops the list. Flew home from Iguazu to Miami via San Paulo. Some final thoughts. Although it is always nice to see Buenos Aires, the highlights of this trip were the natural beauty of the Chilean fjords (go before the glaciers melt!) and Carnival in Rio (the most elaborate one in the world). Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
I have sailed on Norwegian, Holland America, Princess, Viking, Cunard, Celebrity and this was the most disappointing cruise of those listed. The pricepoint was similar to Viking but the overall experience was not up to that stand The ... Read More
I have sailed on Norwegian, Holland America, Princess, Viking, Cunard, Celebrity and this was the most disappointing cruise of those listed. The pricepoint was similar to Viking but the overall experience was not up to that stand The embarkation and disembarkation went very smoothly. We were separated from the masses joining the other ship in port and were ushered onto the ship with little delay. Cabin: Rather small, 2 people cannot navigate around the bed at the same time. Balcony also narrow and small. Bathroom very small and shower is very tiny & uncomfortable. Difficult to get cold water. Service: Staff are very friendly but service is spotty. Service in the Discovery Restaurant is very good, as was our cabin steward. It was difficult to get service in the Living Room between 4 and 5 p.m. The servers are trained to pick up empty dishes but are not trained to keep an eye out for passengers when they arrive in their area. Dining: Food and service was excellent. However, hours were inadequate. Breakfast ended at 10 a.m. Lunch did not start until 11:30 a.m. and ended at 1:30 p.m. We complained about the hours and an officer found me on the ship to address my concerns, which was impressive. Excursions: The shore excursion to Montevideo, Uruguay was a disappointment. The guide had little command of English, and she was ill prepared. We asked her for the itinerary and she said that she didn’t know. The lunch we were given was disgusting – the filet mignon was a thin breaded strip of beef. Not much effort was put into explaining all the sites. We were left to our own devices at the art museum. Entertainment: Entertainment was very good. The Azmazing night at the Solis Theater in Montevideo was excellent but very short. The Azmazing Night and the Officers' Barbeque were excellent. Enrichment lecture with Dr. Palmer was dull and boring. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
This was a once in a lifetime cruise around Cape Horn starting in Santiago, Chile….glacial cruising around Cape Horn, Antarctica landings, up the east coast of South America, ending deep in the Amazon in Manaus, Brazil. For booking, ... Read More
This was a once in a lifetime cruise around Cape Horn starting in Santiago, Chile….glacial cruising around Cape Horn, Antarctica landings, up the east coast of South America, ending deep in the Amazon in Manaus, Brazil. For booking, this cruise was forty-two days and technically two back to back cruises on Seabourn Quest. The ship is reinforced for Antarctica. This was the last summer trip to Antarctica for the season. We are somewhat adventurous active 60’s with a strong FOMO attitude. This was our second Seabourn cruise. Our first was around the boot of Italy and Croatia. We were so impressed this time that we have signed on for Seabourn’s 146 day 2020 World Cruise. A main difference for the Seabourn Antarctica cruises is their expedition style. The style during the six days of Antarctica landings is true expedition with professional naturalists, wildlife and geology briefings, safety briefings, equipment checks and lots of outdoor activities. But no doubt, Seabourn Quest is a luxury ship for around 450 passengers with fine dining, spacious cabins, inclusive beverages (even alcoholic), spa services and intuitive anticipatory service. The ratio of crew to guest is about 85 to 100. Food was better than cruise ship average but could still improve on spices and regional dish selection and variety. The main restaurant serves four courses with a variety of daily house wines. Premium wine is available at a premium cost. The Colonnade is buffet style with excellent salad and entrée choices with indoor and outdoor seating. Menu is often theme oriented. Patio/pool side dining has basic fare of burgers, pizza, grilled shrimp, tacos and grilled meat of the day. The Grill is an upscale “steak house” without added cost but limited seating requiring reservation. It is over the top service including some dishes prepared tableside. The menu has classic, timeless dishes like steaks, lobster thermidor, and Caesar salad. The menu has a varied “dish of the day” but other options remain the same. In suite dining is inclusive and includes the restaurant daily course menu as well as basics. Guests are regularly invited to share a table of eight to twelve hosted by a Seabourn Quest staff member or naturalist. We chose a Veranda Suite which is just less than 300 sq ft and well designed with a walk-in closet, small desk space (sized and plugged for charging devices). There is a queen bed, nice living area with full square table for eating and working. There is a small comfortable sofa, chairs, pull out TV and bar area. (We had our cabin stewardess remove the over abundance of decorative pillows). There are additional drawers and storage space in the TV and bar cabinets. The veranda has two chairs with a small table. Lay back loungers would have been a nice touch. The veranda is very private except in ports when moored beside other ships. Cabin service is unmatched. Cleaning service is at least twice a day. Stewardess is quick to help with special requests. Lots of towels and no annoying signs about laundry/water conservation. For well traveled passengers, it is implied. There are ample electrical plugs and lighting. Mini bar and house liquor,wine and glasses are promptly replenished. Ship facilities are large and spacious considering the number of passengers. Pools and pool areas are small but chairs are always available and area is swept and clean. Towels and drink service easily available. The Grand Salon has space for all passengers in a single sitting for information, lectures and entertainment. It has comfortable padded chairs and sofas for 3-5 people. But supporting columns are impossible to see around. So it was necessary to scope out preferred seats. Self serve wine/beer/soft drinks were available upon entry to Grand Salon. Full bar table service was also available but limited number of servers, so minimal attention here. Entertainment is pretty standard cruise ship style. In fact, we knew dancers from a previous (HAL) cruise. But the program on the first three week cruise was repeated exactly on the second three week cruise even though we were mostly the same guests. Regional programs brought on board were more enjoyable and unique even if not always in English. The Seabourn Quest (and sister ships) are small and easy to navigate with lots of elevators. Staff is friendly always saying hello and often calling us by name. The Seabourn Square is comfortable with a minimal library. Available snacks, specialty coffees, drinks are included. Bar and club entertainment is OK. Lots of seating and dance space. Small casino. Excursions are much improved from our first Seabourn cruise when more than half were cancelled. One of our excursions on this cruise went on even though there were only four people. Local maps and information for us independent types was available at least a day before. But we did wish for the HAL just in case card that had taxi ready port address and phone numbers in local language. The shore excursion staff will also make special personal arrangements. We used this service for opera tickets in Buenos Aires. Their follow thru determination included contact by fax for critical ticket timing and approval to a pre-cruise, on our own, resort without wifi. They arranged box seats and a driver to and from the Opera House. The Antarctica week of the cruise was amazing. It was certainly expedition style. Included in our fare were daily landing excursions off the ship for all passengers. There were zodiac rides, hikes and penguin encounters. Hikes were short or long by choice. Might be a beach walk or a mile hike up the hill. Only 100 people are allowed ashore at a time so we were divided into five groups with changing daily excursion time. Naturalists were waiting on shore as well as on the zodiacs. Zodiac landings were in groups of twelve. Of course, there was boarding assistance for safety and ease. This part of the cruise does require stamina for physical activity and cold weather. But unmatched geography, animals, and ice! A highlight was Deception Island. The captain maneuvered our ship inside this volcanic caldron. Even though the air and land temp was below freezing, the water was tea temp, approx. 90 deg F. Parkas are provided. Boots and walking poles are available to rent. So no need to take up packing space for these. Gloves, hats, scarves and extra layers are absolutely necessary. An excellent list is sent pre-cruise. Kayaking is available in Antarctica as an extra purchased excursion. This is an opportunity for a second daily landing, even for inexperienced kayakers. These are two person kayaks. The trips are well supervised by special kayaking naturalists. Kayakers get a special pass to join any zodiac group of the day for scheduling purposes. Each Antarctica day ends with a pre-dinner recap in the lounge by the naturalists. This includes the next day plan and special documentary topics. The rest of the cruise up the east side of South America was quite enjoyable but not nearly as unusual. Lots of beach and urban ports. We were able to take a Zodiac tour deep into the bays of the Amazon River. All in all, the perfect trip for FOMO adventurists with strong luxury ship preferences. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
We chose this cruise to extend our warm weather holiday and because the dates worked. We had just come off a 19 night Ft.Lauderdale - B.A. cruise on the Royal Princess plus a 2 day visit to Iguazu Falls. Your first ... Read More
We chose this cruise to extend our warm weather holiday and because the dates worked. We had just come off a 19 night Ft.Lauderdale - B.A. cruise on the Royal Princess plus a 2 day visit to Iguazu Falls. Your first impression starts at the cruise terminal check in which is disorganized. Once on the ship we were pleasantly surprised at the size of our premium balcony stateroom, but the balcony itself is small and the furniture is old,uncomfortable and soiled looking. We found out the next morning that the bathroom shower is poorly designed and the water leaks all over the floor because the shower curtain is too short. We pointed this out to our harried room steward who said he would have it replaced, but it never was. We used towels to soak up the leaking water every day for our 7 day cruise...how is this more efficient than fixing the shower? Our next disappointment was a the buffet restaurant which was chaos for breakfast and lunch. It is so poorly laid out that each meal turns into a free for all just to get your meal then another free for all to find a table.There seems to be a chronic shortage of seating which made us dread going up to the buffet. On sea days, when everyone is onboard the buffet situation is even worse, so we resorted to the dining room where it was marginally less chaotic for breakfast, but still unpleasant. We chose the early assigned seating for dinner in the dining room because they don’t offer open seating. Dinner was a relief because it was calm and collected and our waiter”Dino” was a Pro. The dinner menu’s were good as was the food quality, but beware that water is not included with dinner unless paid for i.e. bottled water. The wine prices on Costa are slightly less that other Cruise Lines i.e. a bottle of Chianti was $25 whereas the cheapest red wine on a Princess was $32. Aside from our balcony, which was never cleaned, the general condition of the ship was good. The decor could be described as “gaudy” The fitness centre had an adequate number of machines (some defective) but disinfecting wipes were not provided. There is a good sauna in the fitness center’s change room which was a welcome inclusion We usually cruise on Celebrity,Holland America and Princess, so if you are used to any of these lines you will be in for a culture shock. If you can get over it (as we did) you willappreciate the diversity of entertainment which is quite good on Costa, with many lounges,a very large theatre with excellent shows and a nightclub with good bands and dancing every night. Our itinerary along the Brazilian coast involved 3 stops in small ports that requiredtendering for each (one being 1/2 hour in each direction) English is not common on shoreso our general routine was walking around town,a bit of shopping then wifi and a drink allaccomplished with sign language. We both agreed that we would not sail on Costa again, which is a shame, because we felt the staff all worked hard,and the entertainment was good,but they could not make up for the buffet chaos,understaffing,poor ship design, and poor management. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
A last minute purchase, at the urging of my wife I took the plunge (so to speak) and bought our 14 day Buenos Aires to Rio De Janeiro cruise. By the time I got to the actual purchase pickings were slim and I had to agree to have my cabin ... Read More
A last minute purchase, at the urging of my wife I took the plunge (so to speak) and bought our 14 day Buenos Aires to Rio De Janeiro cruise. By the time I got to the actual purchase pickings were slim and I had to agree to have my cabin selected by the Costa staff. I bought the tickets, and only a few days later got to sit down and read reviews of the Fascinosa. I actually told my wife "I'm prepared to eat the lost $2k, I made a mistake, sorry". But what with anticipation and Rio's carnival looming, she persuaded me to go anyway. One's memory tends to gloss over things later that were a big deal at the time, like the strong smell of excrement in the passageway outside our cabin at all times, The faulty toilet flush mechanism that failed 4 times during a 14 day cruise. Or the gritty feeling underfoot that forced me to demand our steward vacuum the carpet. I don't want this to become an encyclopedia but there is no way to pass on the experience without going into detail. The theatre hosted some splendid live productions, with truly gifted performers and a delightful repertoire. Marred by a self promoting "cruise director" who instructed the audience to give top marks for him. Taken tongue in cheek, this might be excusable but the relentless barrage of juvenile, racially toned "humor" had the audience too embarassed not to applaud. The restaurants were passable, portions were appropriate and well presente, service good. Shore excursions with Costa should be avoided in my opinion. Overpriced and "one size fits all" we were happy that we only signed up for one (Uruguay). Being new to cruising, perhaps I appear harsh but I am reporting what I saw. Alas time prevents me from continuing while things are fresh in my mind, but happily this cruise will eventually be forgotten. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
It is inexplicable why Azamara, when they drydocked the new to them Pursuit, did not add a pool heater. Although the pools on all the Old Renaissance ships are small and oddly shaped with their two whirlpools “pinching” the pool in the ... Read More
It is inexplicable why Azamara, when they drydocked the new to them Pursuit, did not add a pool heater. Although the pools on all the Old Renaissance ships are small and oddly shaped with their two whirlpools “pinching” the pool in the middle, Oceania made sure to add pool heaters, Azamara apparently cheaper out leaving the pool only functional for most when it is in the tropics. When we were quite surprised and commented to the in service staff we got shrugs and told that is how all the Azamara ships are. So if swimming is important to you as it is to us, beware you probably should choose a different cruise line Having said this, the staff are generally good, the staff/guest ratio and cabins fine (although like all R class ships on the small side. ,. Although I have heard from others that the food on Oceania ships are better, having been on both, I would rate them about the same with the exception of the smaller specialty restaurants on Oceania are free whereas the specialty restaurants on Azamara cost $30 each.3 for $70. On the other hand they have one free outing on shore which Oceania lacks....so on balance....unless you are a swimmer, or like the more frequent activities scheduled regularly on Oceania cruises or simply want to stretch out in a properly heated pool I would rate the two lines about the same...at least in their R class ships...with an edge to Oceania’s slightly larger Marina/Riviera and an edge to them if you are on a longer voyage as the costs of specialty dining in Azamara would more than offset one night’s activity. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
The itinerary was spectacular from hot Buenos Aires to chilly Falkland Islands, around the Horn into icy Patagonia, then back into warmer climate into Peru. So, we did not use outdoor spaces much for about half the trip. Favorite stops ... Read More
The itinerary was spectacular from hot Buenos Aires to chilly Falkland Islands, around the Horn into icy Patagonia, then back into warmer climate into Peru. So, we did not use outdoor spaces much for about half the trip. Favorite stops were Punta Del Este, Falkland Islands (so many penguins), Amalia Glacier in Patagonia, Chilean Andes from Coquimo, Orsorno Glacier from Puerto Montt, Valparaiso, Ballestas Islands from Pisco, Barranco district of Lima. We made it safely and without incident to every scheduled port. Naturalist on board was good and some of the entertainment, musicians were really special. The staff was great and it was nice to return to a sparkling room every day and night. The restaurants were good but Red Ginger was outstanding. The menu in the main dining room was different most nights. Buffet is great for breakfast, outdoor grill is nice for mid-afternoon snack after a day on tour. Baristas was very nice for a leisurely coffee and pastry. Martinis was a fun place to gather with new friends before dinner. Never used the casino and we did not participate in many on-board activities except for the single malt tasting which was fun. Note: organize land tours with a small group (8-12 people) on your own as we did. These land excursions can be the best part of the experience. An excursion with 25 folks on a bus is quite limiting, and the prices for small group ship tours are quite high. Final analysis: we would definitely cruise with Oceania again and look forward to it. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
We were looking for the cruise of a lifetime, in the best cabin. It was our first cruise with Oceania, but our 7th overall. There was a lovely mix of nationalities, mostly American and Canadians, then Brits like us, Aussies and others. ... Read More
We were looking for the cruise of a lifetime, in the best cabin. It was our first cruise with Oceania, but our 7th overall. There was a lovely mix of nationalities, mostly American and Canadians, then Brits like us, Aussies and others. English was the majority main language. We are in our 50s and found we were amongst the youngest onboard. The median age was around 70. Our fellow cruisers were sophisticated, gentle, friendly, polite people who were well travelled. There were absolutely no children on board We treated ourselves to an Owners Suite ....wow! It was stunning, beautifully equipped, with lovely welcome gifts, like champagne, a set of Bulgari toiletries, a tote bag and a beach bag with fluffy towels to take home. Our butler, Abhi, had been well trained and was friendly and professional, arranging anything we needed, even before we knew we needed it. He made us feel so special and so spoilt. Meals were served in suite from any restaurant on board, so we often ate in. There is a bar setup for some suites, so we had a choice of spirits or wine, which was great. We used the suite far more than we would normally because it felt so lovely .....it was like a Manhattan apartment. We thought the standard of food was generally very high.The main dining room was very good, buffet had plenty of choice and was good, Waves grill was OK, Tuscan was variable and Red Ginger was excellent with great food and service. Special mention must go to the Maitre D’ in Red Ginger, Hula from Cape Town who was outstanding. Baristas coffee bar was our first port of call each morning...a lifesaver The small ship was much more intimate than larger ones which meant no queues for getting on and off the ship. We also liked the country club casual dress code and found that people generally dressed up for the evenings. The captain and crew were often seen around and were very friendly. The Captain’s cocktail party was a lovely evening and it was nice to see staff being rewarded for long service. We also enjoyed the farewell from the crew, where we were able to clap them onstage and they, in turn, clapped us out of the lounge. We didn’t really do the shows so can’t comment, neither did we use the bars or enrichment activities. The library was amazing - leave your books at home, there are plenty to suit all tastes. The spa was expensive but I did get a good manicure and my husband had a relaxing massage. We did 6 shore excursions, having bought a discounted package. I disagree with previous poor comments, as we had nothing but good experiences. The tours were professional, with a fair standard of English and buses far exceeded our expectations. Our cruise was from Buenos Aires to Lima, taking 3 weeks. It was amazing, despite a couple of days of bad weather, which is so much more obvious on a small ship. Thank goodness for seasickness patches! There were quite a few sea days, but that is the nature of the distances covered On the negative side, I burnt my hand due to ill fitting lids on takeaway coffee cups and found I was not alone. I cursed myself for having left our reusable cups in the cabin that day! Please get lids that fit or give guests reusable cups, which would be a greener option. Also the vibrations at the back of the ship were terrible and the cabin shook and rattled when going at speed. We did get used to it, but it would put me off spending that kind of money again on that suite. We would absolutely travel on Oceania again and we loved this trip. My husband commented that if he were a billionaire he would employ our butler Abhi in a heartbeat. We can dream...... Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
As a scientist and biologist, I wanted to explore the Galapagos Islands for myself to witness the uniqueness of species that motivated Charles Darwin to advance his factual theories on evolution and natural selection. The National ... Read More
As a scientist and biologist, I wanted to explore the Galapagos Islands for myself to witness the uniqueness of species that motivated Charles Darwin to advance his factual theories on evolution and natural selection. The National Geographic team aboard the Endeavor II gave us an exceptionally motivating expedition of the most unique location on our planet. The experience was enhanced by the warm, friendly, motivated and well-informed staff, especially the expedition leader, Carlos, who was also a comedian. There was no shortage of excellent Ecuadorian food and snacks and drinks. There was even time for early morning stretching on the observation deck and a work out in the gym. One of the most exciting experiences on board was meeting so many new people for the first time. The Lounge and Dining Room were large and cozy enough to make this possible. The frequent visits by zodiacs to the different islands highlighting the unique species was breathtaking to say the least. I've never seen so many beautiful creatures in my life. There's no doubt that I will do this expedition again, soon. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
Booked a Vista Suite on the Navigation Deck (#7046) and soon discovered after embankment that it sat directly beneath the Lido kitchen area. Needless to say the noise from above our cabin ceiling was unbearable and went well into the night ... Read More
Booked a Vista Suite on the Navigation Deck (#7046) and soon discovered after embankment that it sat directly beneath the Lido kitchen area. Needless to say the noise from above our cabin ceiling was unbearable and went well into the night and then began again at around 3:30 a.m. There was no remedy for the problem and guest services did not follow up after we complained. We were on a 15 day South American cruise and got very little undisturbed sleep throughout the voyage. This was the major problem we encountered on this particular cruise but there were also many minor to medium issues on the ship which is well past it's prime. We have cruised with Holland three times previous to this 4th cruise but it will most likely be our last. There should have been some sort of disclosure regarding this particular cabin and the related noise problems in the initial booking information. We did not eat in the dining room but had all meals in the Lido Cafe. The food was good and the Lido service people friendly and attentive. The new hand washing stations were barely used and the majority of the people entering the Lido walked right by them on their way to dine. We don't do the shows so cannot comment on the entertainment. The shore excursions left something to be desired and we missed two ports due to bad weather. The future cruise consultant had a slight attitude and acted like she could care less about questions we asked her. The customer service desk was also average and the people manning it were not consistent regarding DVD rentals. The shipboard talks regarding ports we would visit were full of bad information and twice one seating was about two separate ports combined which was confusing to say the least. Overall I would say that the cruise was not up to the normal standards that we have seen from Holland in the past. Our next two cruises will be with Viking which has a newer fleet of ships and offers features that Holland is now lacking. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
We chose this 30 day cruise to see South and Central America. We embarked in Buenos Aires, sailed around South America, up the west coast to Los Angeles. We visited 7 countries in all. Embarkation was delayed 5 hours so the cruise did ... Read More
We chose this 30 day cruise to see South and Central America. We embarked in Buenos Aires, sailed around South America, up the west coast to Los Angeles. We visited 7 countries in all. Embarkation was delayed 5 hours so the cruise did not start out well. We then skipped our first port visit in Argentina due to high winds. The rest of the cruise happened as planned. The ship was nice and the staff was pleasant and helpful. The food was very good and well presented. There was always a large selection to chose from. We ate most dinners at anytime dining in the Symphony Dining Room. We ate breakfast and lunch in the buffets on deck 16. We did not participate in formal dinning. We enjoyed most of the entertainment in the Theater. They had a wide variety, but did repeat due to the cruise was divided into 3 segments. We did not participate in other activities. We used the fitness center. It was large and had new equipment, very pleasant. They offered many fitness classes as well, but did not participate in them. There were only 2 swimming pools and a wading pool. I would not consider this ship if you like to spend a lot of time by the pool. Also, due to the length of this cruise, the age group was mainly 60 plus. We had a balcony room which had adequate space. For this length of cruise, I'd recommend a min-suite. Our room was mid ship, close to the elevator on deck 12. Great location. The beds were comfortable but the pillows were too large and stiff for our liking. The sliding door to the balcony was difficult to open. We went on ship sponsored excursions in every port. We were disappointed by some of the excursions, mostly due to what we didn't see as expected. We felt some were overpriced for what we experienced. Machu Picchu itself was outstanding, but the first day was totally wasted on long lines at the airport and late transportation to Cusco. The hotel in the Sacred Valley was superb! It was the highlight of our cruise and highly recommend it for others. The tour was well paced, so was manageable for most seniors. Walking sticks were very helpful in navigating the steps. Disembarkation in Los Angeles went fairly smooth and quickly. We asked to be moved up to an earlier departure which helped expedite matters. Luggage was difficult to find in the terminal however. Overall the cruise was very enjoyable and pleasant. We would recommend this cruise for anyone looking to discover South America, but we would not repeat it again. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
This was my 48th cruise and 19th on Princess, Buenos Aires to San Antonio. We flew from Phoenix via Atlanta to Buenos Aires and stayed 2 nights precruise at the Hilton. We toured the city and it was very hot and the traffic was awful. ... Read More
This was my 48th cruise and 19th on Princess, Buenos Aires to San Antonio. We flew from Phoenix via Atlanta to Buenos Aires and stayed 2 nights precruise at the Hilton. We toured the city and it was very hot and the traffic was awful. We relied on taxis which were very reasonable. The day of embarkation we received an email stating the ship would be delayed and not to show up before 4pm at the port. The traffic getting to the port was horrific as a container ship had arrived and there were tons of trucks. At the port there was standing room only and no air conditioning as the electricity went out. We waited with 900 people with no water and then had to take a bus to the ship. There were at least 4 stories as to why the ship was delayed. Luggage also had to be transported by bus to the ship. We stayed overnight in Buenos Aires but had no reason to get off the next day and face the obstacles of the port. Our cabin was a DB D332 pretty spacious and decent size balcony, very quiet, good location. There were many Elite passengers so laundry service was slow, we did our own wash one day. We had a bumpy cruise with high winds that made it impossible to go outside. We missed Puerto Madryn although we almost made it to the port but turned around not once but twice to pick up Chilean pilots. More bumpy cold weather but we made it to Port Stanley where we went to volunteer point to see the penguins, this was the best day despite a long drive. We had more cold and windy weather for 12 of 14 days that made it difficult to appreciate the ports we stopped at including Ushuaia, Puerto Montt and Chacabuco. These were tender ports so it was a trial to get on land. At the Captain's Party Captain Nash said he would not sign up for this itinerary again there were so many obstacles, ie, late to port, difficulty tendering not enough tender docks, poor sea conditions, missed ports. I would not recommend this itinerary except for seeing the penguins, very unimpressive and too many sea days which are a snooze. A lot of passengers seemed to use this cruise to get away from colder climates so they were content to sit and read and drink coffee or play cards all day. It was fairly easy to bring wine onboard at these ports, also the ship had some “bargain” wines you could get (I imagine because the wine list changed and they were liquidating some bottles?) Most cruisers were aboard for the 49 passage. We had a good meet and greet, well managed shore excursions with cruise critic people. The food was pretty good especially in the Horizon court. A lot of entertainment in the Piazza including dance and zumba. The production show Silk was a strange melange of pop music and a traditional theme. The shows required getting a seat 30 minutes prior. Debarkation at San Antonio was good as we had a Princess excursion that ended at the airport. We visited a nice winery and had a fair city tour. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019

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