1. Home
  2. Cruise Lines
  3. Princess Cruises
  4. Princess Cruises Cruise Reviews

408 Princess Southampton Cruise Reviews

Second time in seven years to the Norwegian Fjords and North Cape in the same ship - Crown Princess. Check-in at Southampton was smooth and very quick, our feet hardly touched the floor of the QE Terminal and we got a really nice ... Read More
Second time in seven years to the Norwegian Fjords and North Cape in the same ship - Crown Princess. Check-in at Southampton was smooth and very quick, our feet hardly touched the floor of the QE Terminal and we got a really nice cheerful welcome from the ship's stewards before boarding - that makes a difference and opposite to the most miserable crew I encountered on Emerald Princess last year. We made our way to our balcony stateroom on Caribe Deck and minutes later our steward Sammy introduced himself to us and arranged for a baggage to be delivered - All within 30 minutes of boarding! Unlike the 5 hours wait for baggage last year. We always do anytime dining in the Michelangelo Restaurant and always willing to share a table therefore very little queuing and no waiting carrying around the pager. Breakfast was always in the Horizon and can be a bit like pigs in a trough. I don't hang around for I put everything I want on one plate and rejoin my wife. Some of the sea day onboard entertainments would easily make Butlins look upmarket! I just switched off. Now a blow by blow account of the ports: Stavanger: Been there twice before and as usual we did our own things around the harbour and the market. Geiranger: Total chaos with tendering, the ship's company made a dog's breakfast out of it so we gave up and stayed onboard. Captain Martin Stenzel made it up to us in the later afternoon of turning Crown Princess (965 feet long) 360 degrees in Geirangerfjord so we could see The Suitors waterfall and the Seven Sisters waterfall opposite. What would a helicopter or drone make of us? Thank You Captain Stenzel. Flam: Been there, done the rail journey, so it was nice to spend time in the Railway Museum without feeling pressured and take photos at my leisure both in the museum and around Flam. Trondheim: What a change in the harbour! No longer a shuttle bus to the city centre but a longish and fit walk in front of new Docklands style buildings, over the new pedestrian bridge over railway station, then into the city proper. We rode on the Grakallbanen tram out 9kms to the countryside at Lian, had a break and took another tram back. Honningsvag: This time it was warm there and very interesting to visit. Lunch for us was coffee and crepes outside the Honni Bakes creperie and it was slightly more than what you would pay in the UK. Tromso: It rained, and rained, and rained! Lofoten Islands: Very spectacular from a distance and just as spectacular on the islands, very quiet there and we got the impression that the local had either gone into hiding or fled the place! Aalesund: Third time there and even at 15 degrees C it was hot! Bergen: Fifth time there and it's a pity we only get from 07:00-14:00 there, as always we did the Floibanen funicular up Mt Floyen. Now back to the ship: Most food on board was very good and considerably better than last year. Entertainment: the dire (Jo Little "excuse for a comedienne", Magic to do (helps you sleep), Princess Singers and Dancers (overweight, short and stiff jointsi), the good (Taffy Spencer comedian, Ben Mills vocalist, Jon Udry juggler.), the best Steve Larkins Mercury Rising, Jeff Stevenson comedian), but each to their own. I was healthy when I boarded this ship but ill with the shipborne flu-like bug which I caught after Bergen and spent the last sea day in bed. Just over a week later I still have remnants of the cough and a poor appetite. Anyone else catch this bug? Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
We chose this cruise because we wanted to see many of the cities and areas the cruise visited in Norway and actually, despite being quite an expensive cruise, at the price we got it it was pretty close to what we would have to pay if we ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we wanted to see many of the cities and areas the cruise visited in Norway and actually, despite being quite an expensive cruise, at the price we got it it was pretty close to what we would have to pay if we had trained/planed/driven and paid for food and accommodation to the same ports and areas on the ground. Choosing a cruise because of travel goals rather than partly just to cruise did make a difference to the feeling of the cruise. The itinerary was also very port heavy so that might have made a difference too. In terms of cruising, I did not enjoy this cruise as much as others. I found a lot of the 'fun' cruise things to be simply annoying and did less of the entertainment activities than ever before - I did not attend a single sail away for example. So, having a different focus did change the experience. I did enjoy, as usual, being on the sea, watching the sea and scenery from the balcony, not having to cook or clean and waking up with a different view every day. I don't think those things ever get old. The ship is nice enough but honestly I prefer the older ships like Sea Princess. The promenade on this ship is too skinny and involves stairs. That was okay but it just didn't have that classic feel that Sea, Sun and Dawn do. The interior public rooms were very nice though. It did have some funny design quirks though, like decks that only have one thing on them or you have to go up a floor, elevators in the middle that were not for passengers etc. As far as sailing went, the ship was a good mover. I never felt uncomfortable when the ship was in heavier waters. The bathroom in our cabin was the most uncomfortable I have experienced. I really didn't like it. The food was strange - we had been on a Princess cruise just a year before and had quite a few of the Curtis Stone signature dishes. We ordered them on this cruise and they were completely different and nothing like as good. We wondered if a ship catering mostly for the British just doesn't have the same food standards or something, because the food just really wasn't as good. Sometimes it was - there were some times we went to the buffet and had superb seafood - it wasn't all bad - but we did feel there was something of a drop off in taste/quality in the main dining room, though we were glad to see the creme brulee return to the standards on the main dessert menu. I have never complained about the food in the main dining room before - it's always been good - but this time it just didn't seem as good as usual. We also tried anytime eating on this Princess cruise and were completely unimpressed with how Princess handle this. We won't choose anytime again on this line. Another slightly annoying thing was the buffet system of feeding people with some areas closed and others open. It could get tiresome. Seemed to work ok but was just a bit offputting. Embarkation, disembarkation and getting off the ship at ports was the best I've ever experienced. So smooth. I loved that there was no fuss with passports etc. I did hear other passengers complaining about the disembarkation via tender at Geiranger and some people said they only ended up having half an hour ashore. I did not experience this but I was annoyed at the pointless visit to Hellsylt to pick up passengers doing some tour that had been marked as cancelled since 6 months before ... this was ridiculous. I'd rather have had more time at Geiranger, which was a wonderful port. The cabin staff were great. Fantastic. Discreet and did their job well. I didn't really get to know any other staff because of the anytime dining - a lot of the time the dining room staff seemed stressed by the anytime arrangement. The worst thing was probably the price of the shore tours. Do independent research and book directly with providers on these ports - better tours by far and much less expensive. Norway is expensive but it's not THAT expensive. The last day of the cruise, back to Southampton, was fantastic. Sunny, the sea like a lake and so lovely to just chill on the balcony and enjoy the sun. Helped me to remember all the many great things about cruising. Overall, this was a good cruise. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
Chose this cruise strictly for itinerary. We are Cdn 60's, 16 previous cruises on Carnival, RCL, Celebrity and NCL - first time on Princess. We flew Air Canada Toronto to Heathrow and spent 2 nights at the lovely St. James Court ... Read More
Chose this cruise strictly for itinerary. We are Cdn 60's, 16 previous cruises on Carnival, RCL, Celebrity and NCL - first time on Princess. We flew Air Canada Toronto to Heathrow and spent 2 nights at the lovely St. James Court in London. Took Princess shuttle to Southampton port. Embarkation seemed slower than necessary but debarkation was very efficient. Caribe cabin 742 was a decent size with a large balcony near AFT portside. New bed was very comfortable. This was our 17th cruise, on the largest ship but big disappointment in the smallest shower. We aren't big people but very awkward. Steward Roel was most efficient and friendly without being intrusive. Dining was quite fine. Early sitting in Coral offered fine meals with plenty of variety. Only one meal was not warm. We enjoyed a lovely steak dinner at the Crown Grill - well worth the premium. Despite some negative reviews, we were truly impressed with the Fresh Marketplace buffet - quality, variety and service. Rather than one long buffet line there were several serving stations that proved quicker. The area was well managed with plenty of staff to clear tables, offer beverages and even deliver special egg orders for example. Unfortunately, the coffee is horrible in the dining areas so I wisely invested $31 for a coffee card that entitled us to 15 specialty coffee and unlimited brewed coffee - well worth the walk to the International Cafe on deck 5. We did not try the new Steamers or Planks BBQ with upcharge, but I suspect it isn't going over as well as hoped. One concern on deck 15 in particular is the lack of Purell stations. I don't think the new sink wash stations are being fully utilized. What exceeded our expectations was the entertainment. By far, the best overall in our 17 cruises. Some acts were brought on from local ports but the song and dance troup supported with the Princess orchestra were truly outstanding. Other venues offered a good variety of artists as well. The Skywalkers Club is lovely but underutilized as it doesn't get going until after 10 - too late for this busy itinerary. This was port intensive so not much leisure time. We often opted for our own tours or HOHO's in ports - which are usually terrific. We did use the cruise tour for the Military Tattoo in Edinburgh and also for the day in Paris with a lunch on the Seine. Both were not to be missed but very expensive at $229pp. Throughout the ship staff and crew were friendly and helpful. The refurb is evident in public spaces - less so in cabins except for the new beds. Such an ideal way to see all of the British Isles and Paris. The weather was cool 60ish in the north, with 70ish around London and very warm in Paris. Would gladly try this type of ship in the Caribbean one day. Disembarkation was well orgainzed and we were off the ship before 7am for our Princess coach transfer to Heathrow for our noon flight home. Overall a memorable cruise experience with a great itinerary. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
This cruise was chosen for us to complete our Northern Europe adventures. Embarkation went well and our room was ready and greeted with a big smile from our Stewart John. So now for our ritual for first day after being on a pre-cruise ... Read More
This cruise was chosen for us to complete our Northern Europe adventures. Embarkation went well and our room was ready and greeted with a big smile from our Stewart John. So now for our ritual for first day after being on a pre-cruise trip to Iceland, laundry. OK! Who took away the second Laundry room, 1 Laundry room for the whole floor, Yikes. On this trip we booked some excursions through Princess, Edinburgh Military Tatoo, lets just say that we just made it to the event. So all this talk of a new and refreshed Caribbean Princess, lets just say that besides the new restaurants, the old girl was still showing her age. We had cracked tiles in the bathroom, cracked tiles on the pool deck and it seemed that the maintenance crew where quite busy every day. For the new restaurant set up, I will only say what other people where whispering, we want our Horizon court back. The good news they did not damage the Crown Grill, except to raise the price. Ports visited where fantastic, enough time was given to enjoy the venues, long tender rides, but that is to be expected in ports that cannot take us in. So in conclusion for us very nice trip and experience with Princess again and looking forward to another adventure Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
We are regular travellers on Princess Cruises and the Crown Princess did not disappoint us. This was our first time on this ship. The atmosphere was wonderful because of the large number of teenagers and children with their parents and ... Read More
We are regular travellers on Princess Cruises and the Crown Princess did not disappoint us. This was our first time on this ship. The atmosphere was wonderful because of the large number of teenagers and children with their parents and grandparents. We are in our early sixties we welcomed this holiday environment. We were 2 of only about 30 Australians onboard and this gave us an opportunity to mix and enjoy the company of the mainly British passengers onboard. The food was excellent and the Horizon Court offered an extensive variety each day. The specialty restaurants and main dining rooms were up to their usual good standard. The friendly service by the staff was consistent throughout the cruise. Our Mini-suite was up to the usual good standard. The entertainment was varied and enjoyable. The fitness centre was well maintained and well equipped. The cruise itinerary was outstanding and gave us an opportunity to visit a variety of places not visited on our previous Mediterranean cruise several years ago. We highly recommend this ship. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
We chose this cruise as we were travelling with daughter son in law and two grandchildren. If travelling without school age children we normally cruise outside school holidays. We did almost the same family cruise last year on Emerald. ... Read More
We chose this cruise as we were travelling with daughter son in law and two grandchildren. If travelling without school age children we normally cruise outside school holidays. We did almost the same family cruise last year on Emerald. After booking were concerned about the poor reviews about the state of the ship prior to embarking the Crown. We all had priority embarkation, which as boarding started early, meant we checked in and boarded straight away. P&O could learn from Princess. We didn't find the ship to be in poor condition in the public areas, infact carpets in hallways and stairs were in a good condition. The ship did vibrate a lot towards the stern so we were glad we were further forward on this trip. We had a premium balcony cabin mid ship which was not in bad condition and was kept spotless by Ronald our very efficient and helpful cabin steward. The balcony walls had been painted and the flooring had been left with splashes of white paint on it. There were some small spots of rust and the furniture was a bit old and faded so we covered it with pool towels and it didnt spoil our enjoyment of the large balcony. The only real problem we had was the dreadful condition of the mattress on the bed. I have a back injury and suffer quite a lot of pain so I always travel with a thin memory foam topper. I had also asked pre cruise for a pillow topperwhich was provided, however the bed had two huge craters in the mattress which rendered it unusable. Out cabin steward got me another foam topper and with all three we just about managed but it was not comfortable. We had the new Beds on Emerald last year which were very comfortable, but I don't know how long they will last with the size of some of the passengers nowadays. The buffet resturant as on similar P&O and Princess ships is a poor design and not adequate for the numbers using it. The food was also of poor quality at lunchtimes and breakfast times, with un-peeled fruit! and dishes made from leftovers which were never hot, so when the main resturant was open on sea days we always used that. My grandson sometimes ate in the buffet later in the evening when too busy to eat with us and the food seemed better then. The food in the main resturant varied from good to excellent, and the service was always very good. The menus had a lot of seafood with scallops on almost daily. The meat especially the beef was of very good quality and there was no problem getting extra vegetables which we often asked for. We didn't use the pizza takeaway but the youngsters tried it twice and said it was awful and not up to the usual princess standard, which is probably why it never seemed busy. My grandson got a burger from the pool grill on the first day and the bun had blue mould on it so we didn't use that either. The international cafe had great pastries and doughnuts which the kids loved. They have a few salads and paninies during the day which we preferred to the buffet, but finding a seat was a problem, and we ended up taking food to our balcony. Perhaps they should move the wine bar ,Vines, which was empty during the day and expand the international cafe seating. The entertainment was pretty boring with the usual trivia and quizzes that regular cruisers will have seen many times. All of the shows and entertainers we had seen before with the exception of the variety show which was a bit of fun. The library was empty within hours of setting sail, so take books or e reader for sea days. The Mike Gatting interview was entertaining and more talks and interviews would be welcome I think as they are well attended. The service across the ship was outstanding with everyone we met going out of their way to make sure we had an enjoyable time. I couldn't believe the number of people who said they took the service charge off their account. The staff work so hard and I feel that the service charge should be included in the cruise price so everyone pays and would then be fairly distributed across all passengers. We didn't use princess shore excursions as they are mainly trips on coaches which my husband hates. We have been to all the ports several times so used taxis, walked or arranged private tours, which enabled us to go where we wanted and stay as long as we wanted and also worked out better value with 6 of us. We went to Sienna and SAN Gimignano from Livorno with Nicola Scovenna who we have used before in Rome and Luca, and had a great day out in Tuscany. We have travelled with Celebrity, P&O, HAL and Princess and all have pros and cons as do the different designs of ships. Despite loyalty programmes we are not brand loyal and choose a cruise that meets our requirements on itinerary, food, service and sometimes kids clubs. We have found princess and celebrity have longer port stays than P&O which were getting shorter and shorter, and will consider princess in the future. I wish they would use the larger Regal or Royal on summer holiday cruises from the Uk to the med or Norway, as this cruise was overbooked and overcrowded. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
We took our first cruise last year on the Emerald princess and loved every minute, so decided to go again this year on the crown. We were a little sceptical as some of the reviews weren't very good . I can honestly say that we had ... Read More
We took our first cruise last year on the Emerald princess and loved every minute, so decided to go again this year on the crown. We were a little sceptical as some of the reviews weren't very good . I can honestly say that we had a fabulous time. It's easy to moan and groan about petty things, so I'm not going to! We had two balcony rooms so our teenagers were close by and we were on caribe deck (10) so you get a larger balcony. We had the door opened so the kids were able to join us on our balcony which made it even bigger. The rooms were spacious and kept clean and stocked up with towels and loo rolls etc. We did have to request robes though, which were brought to our rooms straight away. In comparison to the Emerald, the ship is very similar but ready for a refurb which I think is taking place next year. The food in the main two restaurants was excellent, and the staff were fabulous and very hard working. We were on anytime dining and went for food at roughly 7 every night and got a table with no problem at all. The Horizon buffet was also good for breakfast and lunches but did tend to get very busy, so some days, we got room service and had our lunch on the balcony. The entertainment on this ship was fabulous! There were plenty of shows in the evening in the princess theatre to keep everyone happy. There could however have been more entertainment during the day, other than trivias and movies. My kids weren't interested in the kids clubs, so it might've been nice to have more family entertainment during the daytime. The only fault we had was during disembarkation in Barcelona. It seemed very disorganised with horrendous queues. However, this wasn't the case in any other ports. The complaint I would give, and this isn't directed at Crown Princess, but directed at some British families, who thought it was acceptable to let their kids run freely and noisily round the ship, doing what they like during daytime and late at night. Leaving food and drinks lying on the floor in lifts and basically wherever they like. Even the captain had to make a few announcements which didn't seem to make any difference. This also links to the pools being closed for a couple of days (not that we got the chance to get in the pools as they were so busy with little children) due to apparently the same person being sick and leaving faeces in not only one, but two pools. I am under the impression that these people were taken off the ship at the next port. Overall, we very much enjoyed our holiday on the Crown Princess and would definitely sail again with Princess. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
Had sailed on the Caribbean Princess previously and had such a great time. The food, both in the buffet and restaurants, was superb. My husband doesn’t like fish but he couldn’t get enough of it on the cruise! So in 2017 we decided ... Read More
Had sailed on the Caribbean Princess previously and had such a great time. The food, both in the buffet and restaurants, was superb. My husband doesn’t like fish but he couldn’t get enough of it on the cruise! So in 2017 we decided to give Princess cruises another go and did the Mediterranean on the Crown Princess. The cabin was good and the steward was extremely helpful and ensured all that was needed was provided. We are not inclined to go to the shows or alternative entertainment but other passengers that we spoke to spoke highly of them. Cannot fault the food once again - several pounds added to our weight again! My only concern is the marble stairs in the Atrium - always tried to avoid using them or only if with my husband. Sadly the one time I did use them without my husband I managed to fall down about 10/15 of them. The care received in the Medical Ward was excellent and fortunately it was the last night of the cruise so was taken off by ambulance. I would appreciate if any one is going,or been on the Crown Princess, take or have some photos of them could post them as photos on the internet seem to show they have a non-slip strip at the end of each step and I cannot recall that being the case. Would be grateful for any photos. Have a fantastic cruise but please be very careful if using the Atrium staircases. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
My wife and I are late 50s and live in the Toronto, Canada area. We chose this cruise based on the itinerary. Never having been to the U.K. before, we thought a "sampling" of several major cities would be ideal and help set the ... Read More
My wife and I are late 50s and live in the Toronto, Canada area. We chose this cruise based on the itinerary. Never having been to the U.K. before, we thought a "sampling" of several major cities would be ideal and help set the scene for future visits. We were not disappointed. The Princess Caribbean delivered in every respect with much to praise and very little to criticize. We spare the small "hiccups" that can be found in any commercial enterprise and added a few comments below which we think could use some improvement and a few other suggestions for fellow travelers. Entertainment was fine. The Beatles tribute show, "From the Cavern to the Rooftops, which was spread over two nights, was really amazing! The rest was the usual and good assortment of talent - comedian, magic, ships dancers, etc. The musical, Born to be Wild, was great with good music , fun, entertaining, lively, and colorful. The DJ should have been able to read the crowd a bit better. Some of the music e.g. Hip hop, Latin, etc. was geared to audience which was not there, and I think resulted in many people leaving. Attention Princess management! - enough already with the "Kenny G" style of droning, incessant, saxophone music. Really grates on you like nails on a chalkboard...elevator music throughout the ship. Don't know of anyone who likes this and music needs to be mixed up a lot more. Excursions were all good but very busy. This to be expected in peak season on a large boat. We're done with line-ups for a long time. Management needs people able to exercise customer focused good judgement and common sense. At the Edinburgh excursion we arrived back at the pier to stand in the designated line in windy, cold and pouring rain conditions waiting for too few tenders. Twenty feet further on was a huge break wall that would have provided many with much comfort but nope, were not allowed to move up (there were no safety issues). At least the ship personnel huddled under their folding tent closer to the wall. Our Edinburgh guide, Jean and the #Mercure Hotel (lunch stop) for this tour were both excellent. Some of the stops e.g. Dublin, had free shuttle service. They don't tell you about this until you have already booked your excursions. It's always about the money. We enjoyed the night club, Skywalk, located aft. During the day this was a great place to sit in comfortable chairs and watch the scenery passing by. Why the bar is not open here on Sea days is beyond me. Also, mere mortals cannot access it from 5-7pm because it's relegated for private club dining. An issue I think is that there is really no other inside location to sit, read and sightsee with a view of both sides - an inside observation deck. The bow sightseeing area they have relegated to exercise machines. Seems like a waste of space in my books. I would put a large bar/lounge/library up there with seating similar to the Skywalk. Does the gym really need the best inside view on the ship? Speaking of library...forget about it. A few chairs in the internet room. Was disappointed we could not get a good old fashioned ordinary hot dog. We had the urge and lined up at the Salty Dog barbecue for a couple. One bite in I could not go on. Although advertised as hot dogs, they were huge, fatty, gristly, bratwurst-type sausages. If that's your thing, fine but tell folks what you are selling. I asked if a regular hot dog was available and nope! Pizza, located beside the Salty Dog was "ho hum" boring despite touting that it won some kind of award. They basically made 3 types each with 2-3 toppings. Ship really needs a central "live" location map so you can see where you are. The active map on the TV screen was useless and had very little detail. Patience with these elevators needed because they take "forever". Same with calling the front desk which several times I had to hang up and try again as no answer. Menu at all 3 of the main dining rooms is the same. For the most part, food was excellent with a great selection, and service spotless! Will we be back? Certainly, Princess offers good value. Future cruises might be on smaller ships with more of an adventure spin. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
Great way to see the UK highlights. We were not interested in the stop in France, but a lot of cruisers wanted to see Paris or the WW2 sights. In my opinion, I would have preferred a strictly UK route with 2 days in Dublin. The day in ... Read More
Great way to see the UK highlights. We were not interested in the stop in France, but a lot of cruisers wanted to see Paris or the WW2 sights. In my opinion, I would have preferred a strictly UK route with 2 days in Dublin. The day in Dublin was way too short as the ship was a muster boat down and the wait to go ashore was over an hour and disorganized. It was a short day in port anyway so we really did not get to see much of Dublin at all. They need 2 days there as the muster to shore takes up so much time. We loved Belfast and the tour out to Giants Causeway is beautiful. We ate most of our meals at the quick buffet which had a great variety of fruits, breads and meats and plenty of choices. We also grabbed cheeseburgers with fries when we wanted. The Dining Room provided good selections and lovely service and we ended up going there on 5 evenings. The evening entertainment was hard to take advantage of as you needed to be there a half hour ahead of the performance to get a seat. The venue is too small for the number of cruisers even with 2 performances nightly. We enjoyed the times we got in, but missed out most of the time due to not enough seating. The staff is friendly and does a good job keeping things going. The ship washers/dryers were always in demand and there were long waits to use them. Plan to wait your turn and bring along the pop in detergents like I did as only powder is available to buy. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
We are frequent cruisers, this was our 19th cruise. After reading the many reviews on this site, we had pretty low expectations for the cruise overall but could not find another ship that did this itinerary at this time. The first thing ... Read More
We are frequent cruisers, this was our 19th cruise. After reading the many reviews on this site, we had pretty low expectations for the cruise overall but could not find another ship that did this itinerary at this time. The first thing we did right was upgrade to Club Class. I believe because of this our dining experience was markedly different from others we knew traveling on this cruise and that reported by previous reviewers. Our meals were good and served hot. We never waited to be seated, had top-notch service and were often offered meals not available in traditional dining. Enough said - if you can afford it, it is well worth it (but a shame it takes this to get decent food on-board). The cruise is so port intensive that we did not really care that much about the rest of the ship experience. Entertainment was so-so and often non-existent during the hours we wanted which was about 7-9:30 pm. Day after day of getting up early meant we often retired to our cabin after that time. A bright spot was Laura Thompson, an acoustical guitarist/singer that was wonderful. Sadly, she said she is leaving the ship at the end of August so this will not help later cruisers. The Ports were great. We did not have some of the tendering issues mentioned in previous reviews although we made sure to get up early on these days and be one of the first off the ship. Not sure what it was like later in the mornings but it seems like Princess might have added additional tenders in Guernsey and Edinburgh. We found many of the days in Port are too short. Would loved to have had more time in Dublin, etc. What was particularly annoying was the ship's excursions were always late returning, often as much as an hour later than the all-aboard time we were given. It is not fair that all passengers aren't given the same time table. We did not do any of Princess excursions. By taking advantage of great advice on the roll calls, we were able to put together our own private or small group excursions for much less money. Smaller excursions can get you to the main attractions ahead of the tour buses. For example, we were first in line for Blarney Castle - went up and down to the stone in 15 minutes. When we left, the line was over 2 hours and many on the tours never made it to the top. Be smart, use trip advisor and cruise critic and plan your own excursions. One day we hired a private car to tour us all day at a cost less than the Princess excursion and we got to see twice as much. Overall, I would recommend this trip for the itinerary. The ship is in decent shape with some areas still in need of updating. The internet is atrocious and totally over-priced. Hard to believe in this day and age that they cannot get this right. Connectivity is no longer a nice-to-have but rather a necessity. We did try Sabatini's and the Crown Grill - both are worth it. We heard people on ship complain about Planks and the BBQ so we avoided them. No issues with personnel whatsoever. Everyone was pleasant and very helpful. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
We did a Baltic cruise three years ago aboard Emerald Princess so knew what to expect and Princess is our preferred cruise line. With the kids now grown up we cruise as a couple and prefer our cruises to have plenty of entertainment ... Read More
We did a Baltic cruise three years ago aboard Emerald Princess so knew what to expect and Princess is our preferred cruise line. With the kids now grown up we cruise as a couple and prefer our cruises to have plenty of entertainment choices and a lively night life. Princess once again did not disappoint and our table of 8 on second sitting in the Botticelli dining room was a laugh. We were always the last to leave the restaurant every night! Having cruised on Grand class ships many times we always pick a Caribe deck balcony cabin for the super sized balconies. Despite Royal Princess being my favourite ship its standard balconies are no match. Crown Princess is obviously a few years older though but it was in good shape for its age and will be rejuvenated next year when it has its scheduled dry dock. With previous knowledge of the ship and the itinerary there were few surprises and our only real disappointment was the weather. On our last Baltic cruise we had phenomenally warm weather so I was unprepared for the chilly days on this one (particularly at sea). Our only daytime rain was in Helsinki which was a shame as it’s a great place to visit in the sunshine. Copenhagen, Stockholm and Tallinn were our main reasons for this cruise and well worth a second visit. St Petersburg was not so however. Two days there is far too long, but I suspect the cruise lines have a deal with the Russians to get cheap fuel. A fuel bunker boat was tied up to our ship for almost a whole day! Our Princess excursion on a canal boat was also a rip off. I would strongly recommend that for all excursions in St Petersburg you opt for the independent tours provided by Alla Tours or SPB Tours and stay clear of the Princess ones. Whilst on board we attended an Art Auction for the first time. I have no interest in Art but I actually found the two hour experience interesting and mildly entertaining. We also always attend the dance classes for something to do even though we’ve danced Ballroom/Latin for years. The two bands on board (Atomic Party Band and Rumba Duo) provided great dance music every evening with the dance floor in Club Fusion suited for Ballroom and the smaller Wheelhouse bar adequate for Latin and Jiving. The comedienne Jo little was great in the Explorers lounge, but her humour didn’t project so well in the Princess theatre. The guy impersonating Robbie Williams however was excellent in that venue. Obviously with the weaker £ against the $ drinks were more expensive, but with the “Happy hours” and the silver 10 bottle wine package our alcohol consumption didn’t drop! A glass of Pinot Grigio was $9.20 (inc grat’) and a bottle of Grolsch $7.76 (inc grat’). During happy hours though you buy one and get the second same drink for $1. The Wheelhouse bar had its happy hour from 3 – 4 pm and the Adagio bar had its from 5-6 pm. For the night owls Skywalkers was 11-12 pm. The bars at these times were packed but the bar staff were excellent and great fun with it. Cherry deserves particular mention, as she would “clock” me and fire off two bottles of Grolsch my direction almost immediately. Our cabin steward Oleg also deserves praise. We’ve never had a Ukrainian before and on embarkation he greeted us with a stone faced Russian look. Over the next two weeks we got him smiling and chatting. He was excellent at his job. We also had an excellent waiter in Sabatini’s. His name was Ilidio (from Portugal) and he made us feel like we were in his very own restaurant. He patiently explained to my wife the options and recommendations and if you knew my wife, the patience of a saint is required. His service throughout the evening was first class and made our evening a memorable one. The food here too was excellent. Food elsewhere however was a bit “hit & miss”. Some nights the food in Botticelli’s was very good indeed with great choices but there were the odd nights when it was disappointing. I think everyone on our table at one night or other had their food sent back. I like my food very hot and on most occasions it wasn’t, unless you asked for slight changes to the menu offering or had chips on the side. The Horizon Court buffet food was not hot enough for my liking either so a burger or slice of pizza was my lunchtime mainstay. The British Pub lunches in the Crown Grill were always good, and the sherry trifle was superb. Being a dessert fan, the International café was the place to go for the best desserts and cakes. The soufflés in the MDR were always very good too. So to sum up this cruise, hot it was not, but we had a good time and would recommend Crown Princess and its Baltic itinerary. If we choose to cruise this region a third time it will be when we reach coffin dodger age! Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
Great cabin, plenty of room and we had a larger than usual balcony. Mattress was poor and the new bedding made it even worse-especially for those with a bad back. Bad idea.Staff was warm, friendly, professional & exceptional. ... Read More
Great cabin, plenty of room and we had a larger than usual balcony. Mattress was poor and the new bedding made it even worse-especially for those with a bad back. Bad idea.Staff was warm, friendly, professional & exceptional. Entertainment was great. Looked forward to the show every night. Variety of food and vegetarian choices in the Marketplace was poor compared to the Regal Princess which had many more choices each and every night. Activities offered on at sea days was also lacking especially given that the weather was not good and everyone was indoors. Princess excursions are pricey and do not offer the same quality as those not offered by Princess. We did not have enough time at Blarney Castle-this is not their first time, there is no excuse. Cruise director Mikka was a bore with no personality and never gave us much info about the next day's port except for time to be back on ship. How about weather, areas of interest, etc. We chose this cruise for the itinerary, the rest was really a ho-hum experience. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
After an anxiety filled pre cruise stay in London (Aer Lingus lost our luggage and my wife's walker), we arrived at the cruise port with our newly purchased walker, clothes (for 3 days), and suitcase. We were met at the cruise port ... Read More
After an anxiety filled pre cruise stay in London (Aer Lingus lost our luggage and my wife's walker), we arrived at the cruise port with our newly purchased walker, clothes (for 3 days), and suitcase. We were met at the cruise port by personnel who immediately saw my wife using a walker and offered a wheelchair. This person took us all the way through the embarkation process to the elevator which took us to the ship. At that point, a crew member used a wheelchair to take her all the way to the room...What service! Muster was a bit of a pain as they still require that you take your life jacket with you and try it on at muster. Fortunately, the muster was in doors and not too long. The cabin itself (inside D 520) was totally adequate for our needs. There were the bottom two beds and a pull out (of the wall) bed for our son. The beds were quite comfortable. There was a refrigerator, a good size closet for the few clothes we had at this time, a desk, safe deposit box, the usual room safe, and HDTV television. Channels included MSNBC, CNBC, BBC News, fox news, a couple of movie channels (no movies on demand), International ESPNU and ESPN2 (though they rarely showed any sports and were more stations with documentaries), and a couple of entertainment channels showing sitcoms. Our room steward, Jimmy, was extremely efficient, always remembered our names and even at one point offered to have our laundry done once he learned that our luggage had not arrived. You will be quite fortunate if you get Jimmy as your room steward. The ship itself is not new, but is totally adequate for the cruise. The gym was quite well equipped and I was surprised how busy it was...There were a couple of pools and a wave pool, but since they were outside and this was the British Isles, they were of little or no use, though we saw some kids and couple of adults use them. There was a half court basketball facility on the top. The food was decent, though sometimes inconsistent. We ate most of our dinners in the Island Dining Room. Except for one time in the Coral Room, the service was adequate and efficient(the Coral dining room service was slow and inefficient). The food ranged from very good (lamb shank) to good (salmon) to average and below average (beef). There was no problem ordering double portions if one desired. We had other meals, in the World Market buffet. Again, it was somewhat inconsistent, sometimes being quite good, other times not so good. My wife uses a walker and there was always someone there to assist her. We never waited over 60 seconds before someone offered water, lemonade, etc. My favorite was the made to order omelettes which you can find in the BBQ room during breakfast. We also had one dinner in Planks, the BBQ restaurant. While not on a par with really good bbq restaurants in the states, the quantity and quality was sufficient for a cruise specialty restaurant ($12/pp). The entertainment, at least for us, was a little disappointing as the acts/shows were almost identical to the ones we had seen on our New Zealand/Australia cruise 18 months ago. There were a couple of times the shows in the main theater were delayed. The piano bar was okay if you don't mind music from pre World War II. We did, however, really enjoy the guitarist and the male comedian. The person giving the "port" information lectures sounded like someone who had just gone on the previous cruise and not well informed. Her talks were disjointed and inadequate. We heard a number of people say the same thing... We were able to have a meet and greet on the first full day out from port and it was well received with over 60 people attending. Of course, the highlights of the trip were the ports. Gurnsey was a half day and probably could have used a few more hours as we only had time for the castle and a little in town walking. However, please note, the tendering process to return IS A DISASTER!!!. We spoke with people who waited over an hour and a half to return... We took a private bus tour from Cobn of Cork and Blarney and really enjoyed it. The Woolens store in Blarney is huge. The grounds of the castle were beautiful. In Dublin we just did a HOHO. In Belfast we had a fantastic private cab tour of the murals. By far, this was the most moving excursion of the trip. In Glasgow we did a ship tour of the city and their "Smithsonian" like museum. In Orkney we took the local bus to a couple of the famous sites. Be aware that this bus sells out, so you need to get to the bus station at least 60 minutes before the departure (10:00). In Invergordon, we took a private bus tour of the highlands. We did not see the Loch Ness monster, possibly because it was our only rainy day of the cruise. We did our own visit to Edinburgh (as we had been there before). In La Havre, we did our own train trip to Rouen. Disembarkation went off without a hitch. There were plenty of cabs available to take us to the Southampton airport for out quick flight to Paris. One quick note, we filed the forms regarding our lost luggage with the purser only after accidentally finding out that we needed to. We were finally reunited with our luggage in Dublin... Overall, despite our own personal calamity, the ship and ports are really worth the time and cost.... Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
I picked this cruise because of daily stops each day. Wonderful ports the whole trip! Ireland and Scotland Normandy are beautiful and safe to travel! We started in London and got to go to Wimbeldon pre cruise. Embarking was very ... Read More
I picked this cruise because of daily stops each day. Wonderful ports the whole trip! Ireland and Scotland Normandy are beautiful and safe to travel! We started in London and got to go to Wimbeldon pre cruise. Embarking was very smooth. Had private tours each day from the ship. Only place not offered was Kirkland. Only walk around this place. Do not bother with a tour. We paid for a tour from the ship was a horrible guide who we could not hear and he could not speak well at all. So we left the tour and walked around. Inverness and Belfast and Dublin, Cork, Glasgow and Edinbourg and Normandy! Wish we had 2 nights for France. Beautiful places to see and visit. The ship staff was wonderful! The food in Club Dinning was just good some nights and better in other nights. Sabatinis and Crown Grill had great Food and Staff was wonderful! Our suite was L106. My only complaint is the small bathroom, and loud speaker on our balcony, which woke us up each day at 7:00am, with daily announcements! We did not want to hear this on our vacation. We can set our own alarms. The other problem with this suite is the Gym above treadmill making noise above our bed each morning too. Bedding is nice and new. Our room steward was great! Shows were fun and many times no seats were left to sit in. Too crowded. Ship was big. Too many passengers. Be ready for this. Gym was hot and needs better A/C. Disembarkation was very easy. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
Overall: We chose this cruise primarily for the itinerary. This was our third Princess cruise and 9th overall (6 on Royal Caribbean). I was a little worried when I read some of the negative reviews before our cruise. However, we were ... Read More
Overall: We chose this cruise primarily for the itinerary. This was our third Princess cruise and 9th overall (6 on Royal Caribbean). I was a little worried when I read some of the negative reviews before our cruise. However, we were not at all disappointed with the cruise. We go on a cruise with the intent of having a good time and we always do. Dining: We had the early seating in the Palm Dining Room and ate there 11/12 nights. Overall the food and service were pretty good. We had dinner in the buffet one evening after a late excursion and it was OK. We ate breakfast and lunch most days in the buffet. The food was typical buffet quality that we have had on other Princess and RCL cruises. Tables in the buffet were cleared promptly which helps during busy periods. Service: The service we had in the bars/lounges/pool deck/theater and buffet was better than we had experienced on previous cruises. We had a couple of issues with specialty coffee orders but it was no big deal. We had the all inclusive beverage package but were charged for a couple of glasses of wine in the MDR. This required a couple of quick trips to customer service to get corrected. Shore Excursions: We did not do any Princess excursions because we booked our own at a much better price. There are HOHO buses at Dublin, Glasgow, Edinburgh and Belfast which are a good way to get a tour of the city at a reasonable cost. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
This was our fourth cruise, our second with Princess, and our second itinerary to the Baltics. We chose this particular cruise because we avoided the start of the main school holidays, the Southampton departure port is very good for us and ... Read More
This was our fourth cruise, our second with Princess, and our second itinerary to the Baltics. We chose this particular cruise because we avoided the start of the main school holidays, the Southampton departure port is very good for us and we found the previous, similar itinerary (with RCI on Brilliance of the Seas) to be a good blend of beautiful, quirky ports and ‘old Europe’ cities. You could also spend two lifetimes in St. Petersburg and never quite see it all, so just 2 days is just not enough. We sailed to the Norwegian Fjords last year on Emerald Princess, so I was a bit disappointed to be going on a near-identical ship this year on Crown Princess. Not because I didn’t like Emerald; whilst the décor is a bit staid in some parts of the ship and the buffet dining a bit of a scrum, overall the ships are large without being overwhelming, well laid-out and comfortable. Actually, the sense of familiarity that Crown Princess gave us was good- we knew where everything was and had a ‘heads up’ on timings for meal times, bars et cetera. I felt Crown Princess was in better repair than Emerald in some areas. In addition, it is clear that the ship is a completely different experience in good weather. In Norway it was cold and wet for much of our 14 day cruise which clearly frustrated passengers with the boat feeling a bit dingy. On the Baltic Heritage cruise this year, we only had 1 poor half-day of weather in Helsinki with much of the trip bathed in sunlight (though it is worth noting the average temperatures for the region are, well, ‘Baltic’). As a result we spend a lot of our time on deck which was great. Our stateroom was an ocean (restricted) view cabin- a calculated risk at the time of booking! To be honest, I actually felt it was better than our balcony stateroom last year in some ways. It was certainly ‘compact’ with two pull-down bunks for the kids, but light and easy to regulate the temperature with lots of storage space. The shower pressure was excellent though at over 6ft tall, it was impossible stand upright under the shower flow for me! It was a bit annoying that the TV was only visible from 3 of the beds. Although our view was obstructed by a lifeboat, we could still benefit from natural light and see where we were. UK / European guests should be aware that there are only (that I could find) two plug sockets in the stateroom. They are far too close together to use adaptors (they use the American plugs). This resulted in bickering (from all of us!) about who’s turn it was to charge the numerous devices we took. If such a thing exists, a multi-plug / bar adaptor would be a good investment! Our stateroom attendant Tito was a star. Always happy, great with the kids and really consistent in his unobtrusive service. Princess should be very proud of their staff. They work so hard and efficiently, always seeming happy and eager to please without being as overbearing as they can be on other lines. That said, it is about time Princess had a look at their photography offering. It feels out-dated and caused queues at times, particularly getting off the ship in port at Stockholm. I suspect the staff were under pressure to hit targets and as a result they were quite pushy, even though they clearly felt uncomfortable doing so. Perhaps moving to a cheaper, digital-only offering might encourage a few more people to spend money on it? The food on board really does polarise opinions. We didn’t use any of the specialist dining options ($29 per person) as it didn’t feel good value for money for a family of 4, but the specialist restaurants are smart and quiet. We used anytime dining and rarely had a wait of more than a few minutes. This is a lot to do with our experience. Evening dining all revolves around the theatre show times (8pm and 10pm). So if you want to eat before the show and turn up at 7pm, you’ve had it. You will be in a long line then will probably have to miss dessert. However if you eat a bit later or a bit earlier, you’ll have no problems. The food is a bit frustrating in the main dining rooms. When they got it right, it was fantastic. I had a number of good seafood starters, the pick of the main meals was a lovely pheasant dish and on the whole the desserts were excellent. However, Princess seem to have ‘focus grouped’ their entire offering with 20 retired British people from Frinton-on-Sea. Said focus group, when they are not cruising, must spend their time campaigning for UKIP, eating spam fritters and watching re-runs of Murder She Wrote so serving up an 80s classic of Shrimp Cocktail, Beef Wellington and Baked Alaska is a massive treat for them. The menu is far too ‘meat and two veg’ for more modern tastes, and even though it was well-cooked and well-served, badly needs some more exotic variety. RCI, for example have a ‘curry of the day’ which gives some good, simple alternatives. Thankfully the buffet had a lot of variety- the Indian night was really, really good with some excellent dishes- it really felt as if the chefs were showing off with some great, authentic tastes. Similarly, at lunchtime you could have anything from a full roast dinner to chow mein. It is great that they brought in dishes to reflect the local cuisine too, although the Baltics are not known for their culinary tastes! Being honest though, the buffet is not a particularly pleasant experience, particularly at breakfast time. The self-service areas are quite small and the seating areas are a free for all. Fine when people are respectful of others. Sadly, people regularly used tables too big for their needs and stayed on well after they needed to, exacerbating the congestion problems at certain times of day. Princess should empower their staff to be more assertive to move people on when they have finished their meals, or seating people more appropriately. The bar areas were great- be sure to go to the Wheelhouse bar at 3pm for Happy Hour. It was rarely busy and is a great place for a drink (buy 1, get another for $1). The bar is very pleasant with good live music. It’s also worth noting that there is nothing to stop you buying a drink in one bar and drinking it in another – well worth it when happy hours are on. It’s not as if you have to walk too far to get a drink, and if you buy a re-sealable bottled drink (e.g. Grolsch) you can put it in the stateroom fridge for later! Club Fusion and Explorers are big and a bit dingy, but smart and comfortable. Drinks prices are high, particularly with the terrible exchange rate. A pint of beer is c.$7.50, a cocktail $8+ and a glass of wine from $7 which is c.50% more than local hotel prices. Princess badly need a more competitive drinks package. If you want to spend 14 days in an alcohol induced-haze, the $50+ dollars per day seems good value. However if you like a couple of drinks without piling into the tequila shots, it soon mounts up. We didn’t go to the nightclub this time, but you can get amazing views from it (highest deck) and it’s pretty smart too. Overall I’d say that all of the communal areas are pleasant, clean and well served with some busier than others. The on board entertainment was a mixed-bag. When they nailed it, it was fantastic. The Russian folkloric show was spectacular, as was the Encore show. It is not my taste, but Jonathan Ansell was very good and a genuine star. However, again it seems very focused on older Brits- the comic acts in particular must have been totally baffling to the international guests. They could easily modernise the offering without upsetting people. I was very impressed with the ship’s resident singers. They were polished and very talented. My kids loved the Cruise Director, Duke Christopher. He’s very cheesy, but actually very good at what he does. I didn’t go to the ‘celebrity encounter’ with Terry Butcher (again, aimed at older Brits), and you had to purchase a photo with him, but he seemed to engage well with the guests. Having completed 4 cruises now, we’re used to upselling and pushing art / photos / jewellery / specialist dining, and Princess are no different really, although they are much more discrete than some. It’s actually quite amusing to be honest how wound up people get about it. We found it incredibly easy to avoid buying things by just saying no, and it certainly didn’t impact the enjoyment of the cruise. That said, I actually felt sorry for some of the staff- the photographers were clearly struggling for trade and were trying everything from ‘exclusive’ events to using different parts of the ship to hawk their wares. Similarly, Effy had up to 4 ‘exclusive events’ per day, ranging from ‘unveilings’ to pamper evenings and also seemed to be struggling for buyers. Clearly Brexit and a weak pound is affecting peoples’ spending power! The staff on board are a credit to Princess. I hope they all did OK in gratuities because they really work hard. It’s not unusual to be served by someone at 10pm in the main restaurant then again by the same person in a different uniform in the buffet at 8am the next day without any perceptible change in the quality of service. They blend into the background whilst always managing to notice that your glass needs replenishing or your daughter has dropped her knife. They have to deal with some real, grade ‘A’ idiots, day in, day out in a busy, relentless environment so I hope they are well paid and well treated by their employer. The enrichment activities were OK. The talk on the the ship and navigation was very short but interesting and some of the presentations about the ports were very good. We didn't attend the other ones. There were a lot of activities on throughout the day, some looked good, others like thinly-veiled sales pitches! We loved the trivia quizzes and the musicians were excellent. The pool areas are great- plenty of loungers and the Deck Staff are pretty good at preventing people reserving their spots. I imagine it must be very different on the hotter routes, but in the Baltics temperatures rarely get above 17 degrees at sea so the pools were rarely too full and it was easy to get a spot to sit down with a book. Our children loved it. They spent hours and hours in the water giving us some much needed peace! The Movies Under the Stars is a good aspect of this cruise- really comfortable and felt really fun- the kids enjoyed it. However, the choice of movie was pretty limited for under 10s. More a reflection of current cinema releases I expect, but there was only 1 evening film suitable for the whole family (kids aged 6 and 8). The morning films were more suitable but started a bit early for us (10am) so it was a struggle to get everyone up, dressed and fed in time! The itinerary was just wonderful. We have visited Copenhagen, Tallinn, Stockholm, St. Petersburg and Helsinki before and only Tallinn didn’t really warrant a second look (great for a wander and a beer in one of the micro-breweries, however). Bruges was brilliant- very easy to get a shuttle bus into town. You can also visit a WWII submarine just a hundred yards outside of the docking port. The town is stunning with lots to see and do. Copenhagen is very big and warrants some forward planning. It’s easy to walk into town from the ship (c.30min scenic walk where you’ll see The Little Mermaid statue and several other landmarks). We visited the Rosenberg Castle which was very good and the town is bustling and attractive. As with all of the Scandinavian cities though, it is very expensive, so if you’re on a budget look out for mini-supermarkets- they do good fresh food and fruit for a lunch snack. It is easy to find your way around Copenhagen but be careful of distances. You can wander around without realising how far you have ended up from the ship! Stockholm is a wonderful city, but it’s very important to plan your trip. It is big and spread out and you can’t do it all in a day. I would recommend Skansen. It’s an open air museum of Swedish life where you can see real buildings from Sweden’s past and also animals including bears, wolves and moose. It was brilliant for adults and children and warranted a full day. It is also close to the Vasa museum if you want to do both. I’d recommend getting the hop on hop off boats. They are a good way to get about and include an audio tour. The red ones also link with the buses which stop very close to the ship. Sweden is also very expensive- lunch for 4 with a non-alcoholic drink cost nearly £50. St. Petersburg is, frankly, epic. We did the 2 day deluxe tour with SPB. Our tour guide, Maria, was amazing. This is a fairly expensive tour, (c.$250 p/p, 6 and under go for free) not for the faint-hearted but it’s well worth it. We were lucky with our tour group – the 2 American families we were with were also up for it; we did as much as we could in the time available and Maria rewarded us with a rich and immersive experience. I particularly enjoyed the Hydrofoil ride to Peterhof and the Usopov Palace, but even 2 days doesn’t scratch the surface of this amazing city. Helsinki was very easy to get into town on the shuttle bus for c.10 Euro pp. The weather was very poor which was a shame, but it’s an easy city to get around. Other cruisers spoke highly of the boat trip out to the Suomelinna fortress so we’ll definitely consider that next time. Gdansk was probably the surprise package of the trip to be honest. It’s a great city to spend a day and actually, the docking port of Gydnia had a fair amount going for it too. Gdansk is beautiful with so much history behind it. My only criticism was the ship left at 3.30pm which was too early to make the most of it. We did an organised tour with SBP which was good, but the itinerary was too tight to allow much free time which was a shame as Gdansk is much more affordable than the other ports. It is a long way from port to the centre of Gdansk though, so be aware of that. The cruise finished with 2 consecutive sea days where were well needed to recharge and relax after so much activity. This is a very active itinerary with 5 consecutive days in port, each of them in cities rich in history and activities. Some people found that too much and as a result didn’t make the most of some of the stops which is a shame. If you are up for it and do your research, you will love this cruise. It was definitely the best we have ever done, and we will definitely be booking with Princess in the future. I would even consider doing the same cruise again! Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
Chose this Cruise due to the itinerary, have been to the Baltic before with P&O , however three new ports of Brugge, Tallinn , and Gdansk were the reason as well as the better price to give princess a try. After I had booked I ... Read More
Chose this Cruise due to the itinerary, have been to the Baltic before with P&O , however three new ports of Brugge, Tallinn , and Gdansk were the reason as well as the better price to give princess a try. After I had booked I registered for the Captains circle club and was delighted to find that the nights from p and o had transferred across so we ended up as platinum members. On arriving at Southampton we went straight to the priority line and were on board within 11 minutes . First impression of the ship were good , it was a bit like deja-vu having cruised on the Azura so had no issues finding our way around . Pre purchased the soda package for the other half and the coffee card for myself these proved to be well worth the money. We always choose inside fairly low down and midship if possible , had E316 for this cruise. Cabin was identical to azura so no issues there accept for damp smell in bathroom which was cured instantly by having a new shower curtain fitted . We opted for anytime dining but noted that from 7 to 830 was rather impossible to get a table , so changed tactics from second night and watched the early show then went to dine around 9pm , the other half struggled over half of the nights to find things to her liking so for the first time in our short cruising life 13 cruises we ate more nights in the buffet restaurant, this was good with different themes every night so always found plenty to choose from. Service around the ship was always good and staff were alway polite and well mannered . The entertainment we found to be excellent good variety and and excellent entertainment team led by Duke and Michelle , their wake show was always good fun. Have to say from a personal point of view the princess singers and dancers were excellent and a step up from other lines we have been on. Movies under the stars was also good including the blankets and popcorn . Ports of call Brugge , we decided on a trip to blanckenburge which was a seaside town , very enjoyable day. Copenhagen, just took a walk off the ship saw the little mermaid, then walked around the park area for few hours, then into the main square watched the changing of the guard and visited a church were there was an option for 5 euros to climb up to the steeple viewing platform which gave good birds eye view of the city. Stockholm , Seeing as we docked in a different part which seemed to be a distance from the centre we had a walk around locality . Tallinn, this was a pleasant surprise did the princess walking tour which was good value and had plenty of free time , only disappointment was the docking time of the ship co-incided with the docking of two ferries so it was gridlock on the road in and out of the port, at return time to the ship another ferry had docked so same thing , this time though were treated to a few lines of American classic cars as there was a weekend show on . St Petersburg , used SPB tours and had a really great two days seeing all the sights including hermitage , church of spilt blood , peterhoff palace , Catherine's palace, metro and hydrofoil trips , lunches also included , only 13 on our tour so no wasted time. Certainly recommend SPB. Helsinki, docked and within an hour heavy rain was relentless so after two hours gave up , so only really saw around market square area . Gdansk, ship actually docked in Gdynia about a hour away, had booked a princess tour which included sightseeing and trip to the solidarity museum, this tour was too rushed the guide Marta was excellent. But due to the 48 people on board and the length of the trip into gdansk and then comfort breaks it all became disjointed , two people were actually 15 mins late at the free time meeting point , solidarity museum was intruiging . Would suggest that the tour group needed to be half its size to make it worthwhile. Two day sail back to Southampton and then priority disembarkation . Overall found our first experience of princess very good and put down a future cruise deposit as it is fully refundable if not used after two years. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
We did a Baltic cruise three years ago aboard Emerald Princess so knew what to expect and Princess is our preferred cruise line. With the kids now grown up we cruise as a couple and prefer our cruises to have plenty of entertainment ... Read More
We did a Baltic cruise three years ago aboard Emerald Princess so knew what to expect and Princess is our preferred cruise line. With the kids now grown up we cruise as a couple and prefer our cruises to have plenty of entertainment choices and a lively night life. Princess once again did not disappoint and our table of 8 on second sitting in the Botticelli dining room was a laugh. We were always the last to leave the restaurant every night! Having cruised on Grand class ships many times we always pick a Caribe deck balcony cabin for the super sized balconies. Despite Royal Princess being my favourite ship its standard balconies are no match. Crown Princess is obviously a few years older though but it was in good shape for its age and will be rejuvenated next year when it has its scheduled dry dock. With previous knowledge of the ship and the itinerary there were few surprises and our only real disappointment was the weather. On our last Baltic cruise we had phenomenally warm weather so I was unprepared for the chilly days on this one (particularly at sea). Our only daytime rain was in Helsinki which was a shame as it’s a great place to visit in the sunshine. Copenhagen, Stockholm and Tallinn were our main reasons for this cruise and well worth a second visit. St Petersburg was not so however. Two days there is far too long, but I suspect the cruise lines have a deal with the Russians to get cheap fuel. A fuel bunker boat was tied up to our ship for almost a whole day! Our Princess excursion on a canal boat was also a rip off. I would strongly recommend that for all excursions in St Petersburg you opt for the independent tours provided by Alla Tours or SPB Tours and stay clear of the Princess ones. Whilst on board we attended an Art Auction for the first time. I have no interest in Art but I actually found the two hour experience interesting and mildly entertaining. We also always attend the dance classes for something to do even though we’ve danced Ballroom/Latin for years. The two bands on board (Atomic Party Band and Rumba Duo) provided great dance music every evening with the dance floor in Club Fusion suited for Ballroom and the smaller Wheelhouse bar adequate for Latin and Jiving. The comedienne Jo little was great in the Explorers lounge, but her humour didn’t project so well in the Princess theatre. The guy impersonating Robbie Williams however was excellent in that venue. Obviously with the weaker £ against the $ drinks were more expensive, but with the “Happy hours” and the silver 10 bottle wine package our alcohol consumption didn’t drop! A glass of Pinot Grigio was $9.20 (inc grat’) and a bottle of Grolsch $7.76 (inc grat’). During happy hours though you buy one and get the second same drink for $1. The Wheelhouse bar had its happy hour from 3 – 4 pm and the Adagio bar had its from 5-6 pm. For the night owls Skywalkers was 11-12 pm. The bars at these times were packed but the bar staff were excellent and great fun with it. Cherry deserves particular mention, as she would “clock” me and fire off two bottles of Grolsch my direction almost immediately. Our cabin steward Oleg also deserves praise. We’ve never had a Ukrainian before and on embarkation he greeted us with a stone faced Russian look. Over the next two weeks we got him smiling and chatting. He was excellent at his job. We also had an excellent waiter in Sabatini’s. His name was Ilidio (from Portugal) and he made us feel like we were in his very own restaurant. He patiently explained to my wife the options and recommendations and if you knew my wife, the patience of a saint is required. His service throughout the evening was first class and made our evening a memorable one. The food here too was excellent. Food elsewhere however was a bit “hit & miss”. Some nights the food in Botticelli’s was very good indeed with great choices but there were the odd nights when it was disappointing. I think everyone on our table at one night or other had their food sent back. I like my food very hot and on most occasions it wasn’t, unless you asked for slight changes to the menu offering or had chips on the side. The Horizon Court buffet food was not hot enough for my liking either so a burger or slice of pizza was my lunchtime mainstay. The British Pub lunches in the Crown Grill were always good, and the sherry trifle was superb. Being a dessert fan, the International café was the place to go for the best desserts and cakes. The soufflés in the MDR were always very good too. So to sum up this cruise, hot it was not, but we had a good time and would recommend Crown Princess and its Baltic itinerary. If we choose to cruise this region a third time it will be when we reach coffin dodger age! Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
Wanted to experience the Fjords so chose this cruise as they were offering balcony cabins at the same price as outside and 3rd person for half price. Getting on board was fine, a little crushed in the waiting area. Cabin was ready and ... Read More
Wanted to experience the Fjords so chose this cruise as they were offering balcony cabins at the same price as outside and 3rd person for half price. Getting on board was fine, a little crushed in the waiting area. Cabin was ready and was a decent size for a balcony cabin, the biggest we've had was on Carnival. This time we had a bed that came down from the ceiling. The cabin steward (Mervin) was very good and went quietly about his business. When booking we were encouraged to,upgrade and ended up with a cabin on deck 14 under the lido deck which I did worry would be noisy. The customer services assured me it wouldn't be but it was noisier than other cabins we have had, especially when they were wheeling trollies around the deck. We ate in Botticelli restaurant at 8pm and the food was beautiful. I felt the choice was a bit limited though. The service by Ralph was very very good. I would suggest that you don't let your child sit watching videos on an iPad in a formal dining room and spoil it for the surrounding tables! The breakfast buffet was very good and in fact the food in general in the main eating area was good especially the afternoon tea in the Caribe. Indoor seating was very hard to find and people were slow to clear their tables. There was always a plentiful supply of tea, coffee and water and the ice creams were free -P&O please note! I would say the food was better than P&O in general. Good hint the port side carpet has a red bit that the starboard side doesn't so when finding your room coming out of the lifts this helps. The casino was enjoyable but felt the minimum bets on the card tables was high. Also I felt the spa prices were silly money. The entertainment was very good, especially Mercury Rising. We never failed to find a seat. Unfortunately, we had a medical emergency on board so,ended up missing our scheduled stop in Stavanger. While this is unavoidable I do think the Captains comment about enjoying the white cliffs of Dover was a little poor as the only compensation for missing a day and the company should have done something as a gesture of goodwill for the remaining passengers. I also felt the prices of the shore excursions was high, we went on the glacier hike at approx £90 each. It basically amounted to a coach ride and free cake. It was a very strenuous hike. Norway in general is extortionate. There is nothing to do in Olden or Skjolden except a walk,or buy an excursion. I found non formal nights dress code was very casual compared to other lines. Also the main currency on an English based cruise was dollars which did disadvantage the pound in today's climate. I would travel with Princess again. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
Actually my kids chose this cruise, because they were in their HS Marching Band and played Scottish music, naturally they want to learn more about Scotland. We stayed in London for 3 days before getting onto the ship. The embarkation ... Read More
Actually my kids chose this cruise, because they were in their HS Marching Band and played Scottish music, naturally they want to learn more about Scotland. We stayed in London for 3 days before getting onto the ship. The embarkation was fast and painless. I still remember it use to take forever and loads of paper work. I have to say from the time we arrived at the port, drop off the luggage, check in and walk up to the ship, it took less than 30mins! Our luggages was delivered to our cabin in no time at all. Food: We had a nice lunch at the World Market Place. The staffs were nice and very attentive to our needs. Dining room, they put our kids at a separate table, which was corrected after the first night. We had dinner at the dining room every night, the food and service were good. Crown Grill, it was a surprise for the kids. We enjoyed the lobster and steaks, and the service was good as well. World Market Place(buffet), breakfast was pretty much the same every day. Lunch, I think I had it once, and it was good, other times we were off the ship or had it in the dining room. Dinner, ate at dining room, but they do serve dinner until 11pm!! We had stopped before they close for a cup of tea and late night snack. You'll be surprise how many people are there at that hour. International Cafe, they have different pastries for breakfast, and for snack all day long, they have good panini and salads too. Entertainment: Fabulous, the crew were just fantastic and so talented. Enjoyed very much. The only complain I have is the tender service, with our trip, Guernsey was the worst. They kept us waiting in line for 2.5 hrs and not telling us what's going on. Time totally wasted, we could have gone to see what we missed on the island. We planned our own shore excursions. The cruise line charged way too much. It adds up for a family of 5. Cobh(Cork) took the train and bus to Blarney Castle, like a lot of the passengers, lots of walking, so we can eat more on the ship!! Dublin, 1st day, shared a group tour with my follow cruisers, the nicest and fun people we met, went to Cliffs of Moher, light rain when we got there, 30 mins later, the fog rolled in. Good thing we got there a little early. Dublin, 2nd day, the cruise ship had FREE shuttle to the city, which was great, walked around a lot. My best excursion had to be the Giants Causeway(Belfast). It was amazing to see those stone, the way they are shaped, just incredible. Edingburgh, I would go back just to spend more time to see everything, shopping wasn't bad either! Disembarkation was a breeze! My family enjoyed the trip, and that's all it matters. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
A close friend asked me if I wanted to cruise around the British Isles when she went. I though that this would be a great idea.The embarkation was incredibly smooth and incredibly efficient. It did, though, take about 2.5 hours to ... Read More
A close friend asked me if I wanted to cruise around the British Isles when she went. I though that this would be a great idea.The embarkation was incredibly smooth and incredibly efficient. It did, though, take about 2.5 hours to receive my luggage, but that was the only issue I remember. The ship was recently updated in several areas, but I do feel that my cabin could have used a new carpet and some newer furniture. The on-board entertainment was quite good; especially Paul Munro who plays piano most nights and does an amazing job with "The Great American Song Book"! Unfortunately, I cannot say the same thing about the food. I found the portions at dinner to be tiny and the selection of foods quite poor. We did have one dinner in the steak house which was wonderful and a fabulous deal for the price. Again, I can't say anything good about the Italian restaurant, Sabatini's. I've eaten in Italian restaurants through the US and Europe. I've actually had better food and service in some local pizza places where I live in South Florida. I wouldn't recommend that restaurant at all. There is a pizza restaurant and a hamburger restaurant on one of the top decks. Both were quite good and were included for free. The fitness center was too small, and there were very few classes on most days. The ship advertised Pilates class, but there weren't any. The spa and beauty shop were lovely with very good service. All of my tours were booked through Princess. My advice is NOT to do this. Not worth it. Hire a private guide or do the "hop-on - hop-off" buses that most cities had. Ports: Guernsey Island was absolutely wonderful. I would love to visit other Channel Islands. Cork was a lovely place to visit; I loved kissing the Blarney Stone. The gardens were beautiful Dublin: I've been to Dublin before and still enjoy visiting. Visit Guinness and book the Connoisseur Experience for a wonderful time. Jameson is also fabulous to visit. Belfast: I hated this tour. I fully realize that religious issues have overwhelmed Northern Island for centuries, but that was basically all the guide talked about. "Here's the Protestant neighborhood. Here's the Catholic neighborhood. Over there is where several Catholics were killed. Over there is where many Protestants were killed." It was so incredibly dismal. Scotland: I can't wait to go back to Scotland! The landscapes are lush, green, and absolutely gorgeous! I loved all three stops in Scotland (i.e. Glascow, Inverness, and Edinburgh. Normandy: I felt such pride in our enlisted men and women from WWII. Quite overwhelming to see the beaches (Omaha, etc.) and the American Memorial Cemetery. We had lunch afterwards about an hour away near Caen. The food was OK. THE LAST PART OF THIS TRIP WAS A HORROR: Our tour (and from what I could see, many others) stopped at the seaside village of Arromanches along Normandy beach. We were given about 1.5 hours of free time to walk into what was basically a tourist trap with over-priced junk, over-crowded cafes, museums that charge to get in, massive crowds, and absolutely no place to avoid the rainy weather that we encountered. I kept wondering if the tour companies were actually receiving "kick-backs" from the town council because there was nothing about that part of the tour that was pleasant. I sat, hiding from the rain and cold, under an overhang for over an hour speaking with other members of my tour who thought the exact same thing. IF YOUR TOUR INCLUDES ARROMANCHES, DON'T GO ON IT! At least two of the tours that I took had guides who didn't speak English well. Please, Princess, being bilingual is awesome, but the who have extremely heavy accents in English should not be used. To summarize: I had a great time, but I would like to have spent less time in Dublin (2 days) and more time in Scotland. It's a great trip, but the food is poor. Perhaps this is because Carnival owns Princess. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
We were a group of 8 seniors, all very good friends, who all experienced a fabulous Trip from start to finish. This was my wife and myself's, 19th Cruise and it turned out to be one of the best. We arrived in London and spent 2 ... Read More
We were a group of 8 seniors, all very good friends, who all experienced a fabulous Trip from start to finish. This was my wife and myself's, 19th Cruise and it turned out to be one of the best. We arrived in London and spent 2 days there before heading to Southampton. We stayed at a great little quaint hotel called the "Chamberlain" which was only a 6 or 7 minute walk to the tower of London and also one of the bus stops on the HOHO.The 1st day we toured the "Tower of London". 2nd day we toured London on the HOHO Bus. Our entire experience in London was fantastic. !st day of Cruise arrived at Southampton Port Terminal and boarded the ship. Embarkation went easy and we boarded quickly.The Caribbean Princess was quite nice, not as elaborately decorated as other newer ships but she was clean and her various lounges were really elegant. Small Atrium, but a lot of activity. The "salty Dog" and Cones Ice cream stations were really a big hit. 1st POC: Guernsey (St. Peter Port)- was a delightful stop. Quaint little Charming city. From the dock we took a small tram car that took you around the city center which allow us to view were we wanted to visit on our own and also have lunch. It was really a very enjoyable day visiting this little gem. 2nd POC ; Cork Ireland -The ship We took a bus tour that took us on a scenic drive of the countryside as well as a stop at the woolen shop were we also had an irish coffee. Afterwards arriving back to the ship we toured Cobh on our own, which is a 10 minute walk from the ships docking pier. 3rd POC Dublin -where we spent 2 days. 1St day we took a scenic bus tour to the "Malihide Castle" afterwards went to a Irish pub and sample some of the local beers. overall it was a very good tour and you learn a lot about the Irish customs. Very good stop to shop for Irish linens. 2nd day after taking the ship's shuttle to Dublin spent touring this great city on th HOHO Bus. 4th POC Belfast- we previously purchased a HOHO bus combo ticket which allow us to tour Belfast and learn a great deal of it's history.The highlight of the excursion wast the amazing "Titanic Museum" where we spent several hours.This was a fantastic experience and highly recommended to visit. 5th POC Glasgow (Greenock) SCOTLAND Toured the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and viewed the city center of Glasgow 6th POC -Invergordon - We did the private "WOW Scotland Tour" and it was one of the best shore excursions tours we have ever taken in 19 cruises. These people know how to conduct a tour. When you boarded their bus they had bottles of water on each seat and they provided a sandwich lunch.As we stared out The Highlands of Scotland were magnificent to view. It was miles and miles of awesomely beautiful scenery. Scotland came to life here.. Gordon our tour guide and Graham our driver virtually by passed there way around the crowds and busy bus routes which enable us to basically have a private tour. We first went to a private tour of Brodie Castle which was magnificent. we then travel to 6 other stops each one in it's own right including a stop at "Loch Ness" which were all fantastic This particular WOW tour is a must they virtually are the best tour at this Port. and one of the best tours we ever encountered. 7th POC Edinburgh- This was everyone's favorite for many reasons. Edinburgh is a must see city. as you walk around the cobble line streets you are surrounded by old medieval structures, the churches, the castles. An astounding city to say the least. had Lunch in the Grassmarket area a Little French Restaurant " Le Petite Paris" where you thought you were actually in Paris. The food was exceptional. Scotland was absolutely wonderful we all fell in love with this beautiful country. 8th POC -My wife and I choose to go to Rouen Normandie France since we already visited Paris and the Allied landing Beaches during the D-day invasion which I suggest is one location everyone should visit in their lifetime. However, Rouen was a delight and visiting the "Cathedral of Notre Dame" at Rouen was an amazing sight as was the spot where Joan of Arc was burned at the stake. Last day disembarkation went very smoothly, found all of 16 pieces of luggage without a hitch.. Wow what a fantastic trip ! Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
Great Overall experience. Very helpful Stateroom Steward, the cabin was always very clean and tidy. Bar Tenders were great too. Accessed dining via World Fresh Marketplace, slightly confusing sometimes as not sure whether it was the ... Read More
Great Overall experience. Very helpful Stateroom Steward, the cabin was always very clean and tidy. Bar Tenders were great too. Accessed dining via World Fresh Marketplace, slightly confusing sometimes as not sure whether it was the port or starboard side of the ship, as the opening times for each changed regularly. Shore Excursions debatable. Two passengers were left behind from a tour of Blarney Castle and had to get back to the ship via a taxi. Would rather arrange own less expensive shore excursions. Would cruise with Princess again if the Ports of Call / Itinerary are of interest. Trying to connect with Jean and Fred from Miami, Florida. They were on Deck 10 Caribe. Can anyone help me please? We lost contact on the last day and hope they got home safely. Believe they were due to take a tour to London before flying back to the US. Many thanks, regards, Caz (UK) Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
This was the third time in 4 years we had done this itinerary on Caribbean Princess due to special deals. Although the ship,had had a partial refit, there were areas of the ship showing neglect and several public toilets were closed due ... Read More
This was the third time in 4 years we had done this itinerary on Caribbean Princess due to special deals. Although the ship,had had a partial refit, there were areas of the ship showing neglect and several public toilets were closed due to maintenance at times. The buffet had been refurbished and renamed Fresh Marketplace. We found the layout much better but could not say the same for the food in both choice and quality. We had to send food back in the Coral Dining Room on several occasions due to the temperature or quality of the meat, yet on a few occasions the food was excellent. It was certainly much better ladt year. Ports of call Guernsey - due to high winds forecast it was decided to leave Southampton much later and miss out this port. Having visited before, I would recommend taking the local bus which circles the island in about an hour and costs £1. The bus station is across the road at the end of the tender dock. Cobh - the train station is adjacent to the dock and it is a quick, picturesque journey into Cork, where you can catch a bus to Blarney Castle. cork itself is worth looking round too. Cobh is small but there is a Titanic experience there as well as varioys shops selling souvenirs. Dublin - unlike last year, shuttle buses were provided free and the drop off point was 5 minutes away from Trinity College and the Book of Kells exhibition. The Hoho bus is worth considering too. Liverpool - our favourite port with so much to do. Hoho buses offer 3 routes - one of which is a Beatles tour. Ten minutes walk away is James Street Station from where you can catch a train to Chester with its medieval shopping area, city walls and Roman remains. Liverpool has a Tate modern, the Museum of Liverpool, Albert Dock (Beatles story) and Maritime and Slavery Museum within 15 minutes walk if the ship. Pity there isn't an overnight stay here. Belfast - again a free shuttle bus which drops you off by the Tourist Information office from where you can get a Hoho bus or even a cheap trip to the Giants Causeway if you get there early enough. If visiting on a Sunday, the shops don't open til 1 p m but there is a Sunday market which opens at 10 a m. Well worth a visit - inexpensive souvenirs, art and craft items. Greenock - a 15 minute walk to the station where you can catch a train into Glasgow. It is a frequent service and takes about 20 minutes. Again Hoho buses are very useful here. There is a small shopping mall in Greenock and a couple of supermarkets. Invergordon - you can catch a local express bus into Inverness which takes an hour and connectsthere onto a bus that goes to Loch Ness using the day rider ticket. There are also local tour operators offering various sightseeing trips including Loch Ness and Urquart Castle. Invergordon, itself is very small. There are a couple of souvenir shops in the town as well as two next to the cruise dock. South Queensferry for Edinburgh. - the ship anchors in the Firth of Forth in front of the Forth Rail Bridge. At the end of the tender pier there are coaches offering a return trip into Edinburgh for £10/$15. For the very fit passengers you can walk up to Dalmeny station next to the Forth Rail Bridge and get the train to Edinburgh (slightly cheaper but the path is uphill and involves 120 steps). Alternatively get the train in the oppisite direction to Dunfermline and visit the Carnegie Museum and Library and Carnegie's birthplace and museum. In Edinburgh you have Edinburgh Castle at one end of the Royal Mile and Holyrood House at the other end. There are also Hoho buses there. Le Havre - shuttle buses into the centre cost $16 return. You can walk it in about 30 minutes. Getting to Paris on your own is possible by train but not recommended. It is also a 3 hour journey each way by the ship's very expensive tours. A few passengers left the ship there to get the train to Paris to extend their holiday and return home from there. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
Already Booked?

Get to know who you’ll be sailing with

Find a Cruise

Easily compare prices from multiple sites with one click