Golden Princess Cruise Review to Alaska - Inside Passage

Deck Hand

1 cruise (first)


Helpful Votes

4 out of 5

A Great Experience, Overall

Sail Date: June 28, 2008

Reviewed: 8 years ago

Traveled As: Large Group

Room Type: Balcony

The ship is beautiful inside and out. Just a few minor maintenance issues (one dryer in laundry wasn't working all week, our stateroom balcony door would not lock and was never fixed despite several requests).
I was minorly annoyed by the constant "selling" of many available extras. Every activity seemed to have a related item for sale. I enjoyed a fabulous spa treatment and massage then heard a very assertive 5 minute (felt longer) sales presentation for all of the extras I, "needed".
Park onsite if you live in is a great bargain!

I thought from tv commercials that the experience would be a little more grand, but with a minor adjustment to expectations, this was a truly wonderful vacation.

Pros: Alaska! The food, the activities, champagne breakfast on the balcony

Cons: Smoking is allowed in casino and many outside areas.

Recommends Golden Princess? Yes!

Cabin / Stateroom
The sleeping room is larger than I expected and the bathroom smaller. But, E-208 is a great value. It is priced as partially obstructed but is not really obstructed at all. (a lifeboat hangs above and aft of this room)
There is more to do than anyone can fit into a week! We really enjoyed ballroom dance class, extreme pictionary, a wine tasting (small fee) and the variety of music in the lounges.
Service and Staff
We didn't experience, "above and beyond" service, but the staff is great, friendly and competent. It seemed that we received better service when we were buying alcohol than when we were not.
Ship Quality
99% well maintained. It doesn't seem brand-new for sure, but you could think you were on one of this ship's first cruises. Be prepared that you have to be out of your stateroom by 8 a.m. the last day and you may not be disembarking until 9:30 a.m.
Food and Dining
Excellent food in both buffet and dining rooms. Skip the specialty restaurants if you enjoy fine dining frequently. The extra fee is for a slightly quieter more intimate experience. There was otherwise no difference in food or service. "Formal" dress code really seems to mean, "dress for dinner." The anytime dining crowd on our cruise was not very formal. Nice slacks, button shirt, pretty blouse and some glittery jewelry is all you really need. Use the dining rooms! We ate at the buffet a lot until we figured out that we could have a nicer dinner experience.
Skagway, Alaska
The white pass train is pretty cool. We liked the amazing scenery during sailaway from this port.
Don't Miss: Be sure to go topside for the sailaway!
Victoria, British Columbia
We enjoyed the night market in the inner harbour, the live music and other street entertainers within a block or two. Get in line for a taxi immediately upon disembarking to beat the crowd and for the cheapest ride into the inner harbour. ($8.50 fare for 4 vs. $6 each for shuttle)
Don't Miss: Stay long enough to see the Parliment building lit at night.
Juneau, Alaska
Juneau is beautiful and fun. Our group of six loved the Red Dog saloon in town and really enjoyed the Mt. Roberts Tram and the beautiful views.
Don't Miss: The Tram is cheap and fun. Take the shuttle to Mendenhall Glacier but do it earlier in the day. We went late and only got to spend 20 minutes. It was still worth the trip, though!
Ketchikan, Alaska
Do the main walking tour. (watch the map - it has two tours on it! Skip the west end tour.)
Don't Miss: Do your homework! The town is small but the time at port is short.

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