Crown Princess Cruise Review to Alaska - Inside Passage

1 cruise (first)


Helpful Votes

4 out of 5

Pretty good. Very scenic and mellow.

Sail Date: May 28, 2016

Reviewed: 4 months ago

Traveled As: Couple

Room Type: Inside

Best part of the cruise was the beautiful scenery.  We went from May 28-June 4, 2016, so it was pretty cold up on deck.  It was mostly cold, windy, and rainy, so if you were planning on lying out on deck, it didn't really happen.  We went out to the jacuzzi once on one of the two warmer/sunny days we had.  But perhaps if you go in July it will be warmer.  The service was pretty good and the staff pretty nice and friendly.  Food was ok - not the best, but not bad either.  The activities offered were fine - they had bingo, trivia games, an art auction.  Of course it all depends what you're into.  It was an older crowd, so everything was pretty low-key.  Was calm and relaxing.  There was a casino.  As for shore excursions, we didn't want to pay too much, so opted for the lower priced ones like the bus tour to Klondike Summit, etc.  All was pretty and easy-going.  We did not do any particularly exciting or adventurous activities.  So if you ask me if I would recommend this cruise, I would say that if you want to see Alaska and just experience a cruise for the first time and are more of a mellow low-key person, this is the cruise for you.  This was my first cruise, and it was more of an experiment to see if I could handle the seas since I'm prone to seasickness.  I did not get seasick at all, even though we had a couple of rocky nights, but all in all it was a success for me.  I would consider doing another cruise, but I would go someplace warmer next time so that we can actually lay out on desk and not have to bundle up just to go outside and look out at the ocean.  Oh, one final thing I'll mention is that Princess was pretty organized in how they ran things.  However, there were a couple of things that happened on our cruise that I feel could possibly have been handled better.  First, the entire ship had to wait to disembark in Canada because they needed to track down a family who apparently did not complete the customs forms properly.  Our shore excursion to Butchart Gardens in Victoria was delayed an hour or so because of this, so that was time lost.  Not sure how this process works, but I'm wondering if Princess could have somehow caught this error prior to the ship arriving in Canada so that the delay could be avoided.  The second thing was when I opted to have "E-Z onboard check-in" from the ship to my flight.  Princess offers this service where they will check in for you, print your boarding pass, and send your bags directly to the airport for you so that you are free to do what you want when you get off the ship and not have to worry about your luggage.  They charge $20 per bag, which was fine, but they insisted that I provide them with a printout of my flight itinerary which I did not have.  Had they told me that I needed to provide a printout, I would surely have brought it with me, but I didn't.  I had to wait to get onshore and forward the email I received from Delta to one of the Princess passenger services people so that they could print it out for me and attach it to my request form.  This ended up turning out alright, but it was a bit aggravating and stressful to have to worry about.  Other than that, Princess provided pretty good service and our cabin steward was particularly good.

Cabin / Stateroom
Small, no windows, but I expected all of that. Other than that, just fine.
Embarkation and Disembarkation
Had no problems embarking and disembarking except for that one time in Victoria when we were delayed for over an hour.
Ship Quality
Very clean ship. Nice.
Destinations and Excursions
We opted for low-key, mellow, and relatively inexpensive. Best one was Mendenhall Glacier because we walked to Nugget Falls. Klondike Summit was nice, but uneventful - the bus driver was the best. The lighthouse, eagles, and totems was okay, nothing really special although the staff onboard was nice and accommodating. Butchart Gardens would have been better if we had more time (our disembarkation was delayed), and I think would have been better if it weren't dark out.
Onboard Activities
Pretty low key and mellow activities. I might have missed it, but I was looking forward to a tour of the ship, but I did not see this offered.
The shows were done by talented singers and dancers. The actual production was okay. Difficult to judge since the shows I've seen in my lifetime are broadway type shows and concerts.
Service and Staff
Everyone pretty nice and helpful. At the dining area, they were good at coming and asking you what drinks you wanted when you sat down, but if you wanted refills, you were pretty much on your own. Maybe they were too busy to constantly be attentive.
Food and Dining
Food was okay. Not great, but not bad. Like with most buffets, some dishes were better than others, and some were strange.
Seattle, Washington
We had fun in Seattle - went to space needle, EMP museum, and ate at Lowell's in Pike Place Market.
Juneau, Alaska
Trip to Mendenhall Glacier and walking to Nugget Falls was probably the best part of all the shore excursions that we chose to do in Alaska.
Skagway, Alaska
Bus tour to Klondike Summit was pretty uneventul. Best part was the bus driver.
Cruise Glacier Bay
Very pretty. Be prepared for very cold weather. No shorts on this cruise!
Ketchikan, Alaska
Lighthouse, eagles, and totems boat ride was nice but pretty uneventful for us.
Victoria, British Columbia
You get there in the evening, and we got there particularly late, so be prepared not to be able to see much.


Note that there really is no convenience store. They have a boutique with a very small section of things like antiacid, etc., but there isn't much. I was also looking for a vending machine or someplace where they had bottled soda, but there is nothing like that.

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