This was a 64 day cruise from Miami around South America traveling around Cape Horn and back through the Panama Canal to Miami. The longest cruise we have taken to date and we can honestly say we hated to see it end. The people we met, both passengers and crew were delightful. The only negative we experienced was the location of the ship in some ports. The docking was often in container terminals that you could not walk through and frankly were dangerous, shuttles to and from town were often $8 each way per person. On the wholethis was a fabulous trip and yes we would definately do it again.
The fjords are not as high and as spectacular as in Alaska because in Norway, fjords are defined as a waterways cut out by glaciers. Some of them are only a few hundred feet high. Too many ports of call. At least 3 of them can be changed to sea days because there was nothing to see in those ports. Most seasoned cruisers prefer sea days because there are more event programs and the cruising is more relaxing. In one port day, it was Sunday. Over 90% of the stores were closed. The visit was wasted.
The events scheduling at sea days have many time conflicts. They were very poorly scheduled.
The matre'd and head waiter in dining were not friendly, never introduced them to us.
In summary, it is not worth spending the time and airfare to fly to Norway to see these fjords, except Flaam. You'll be much better to go to Alaska unless you run out of places to go, like me
Visiting the Norwegian fijords in a small ship was an exquisite experience. On the other hand, the ship experiece had a little to be desired. The food in the buffet was fair; the dining room food was good, although we only ate there twice because there was insufficient tables for two. The "entertainment" especially the ship singers were poor except for some of the contracted entertainer who were good. Finally, the ship has a tired appearance and needs to be rennovated.
What a wonderful ship !!! Yes its old and small ...but filled with great staff and food...!!! Our server Frosina in the dining room and Ron lee were two of the sweetest and hardworking crew....we wanted to take them home with us...For an old ship it was well maintained and a bit elegant....It was our 30th cruise and our room even had 2 bathrooms !!!! Yes I felt like a princess !!!! Especially with my new pearl necklace we bought on the ship ...we even booked another cruise while on the ship !!!!!
Though ship is small and actually a bit disappointed at the beginning. However, after the 10-day cruise, we feel we are just at home and our meals are well served. Our table attendant/asst.attendent in the dinning room are well trained and always happy to serve. The head-waiter is funny and make jokes, and he is entertaining. Room is neat and tidy.
The ship is much smaller than the ones we are used to sailing on to the Caribbean. But the staff is very friendly and there's more than enough staff to accomodate all the passengers. The ship could use a little updating on the accomodations.
The ship was warm, comfy, inviting, wonderful home-away-from-home. The crew was terrific, and the ship's captain a perfect host. The only disappointment - and it was a HUGE one: The shore excursions were costly (in comparison to those experienced on other cruises) and allowed no time to actually see things other than through a bus window. Excursion director needs to work with excursion operators. Passengers only endure being herded like cattle for a reward - specifically, getting to see the sites of the world. A cruise is enjoyable in itself, but it is not the only reason for travel in most cases. Excursions play a huge role and the excursions associated with this cruise were more than disappointing - with the exception of Dartmouth.
We were told by a felllow cruiser that the ship departure time in Flaam was changed. That effects the possibility of us not able to join the paid tour on Flaam and lost the refund. I hope Princess will do better than this.
We were looking forward to visiting a new part of the world for us. The North Cape & Norwegian Fjords cruise was just the ticket. Everything was in working order (although the ship is about to be over-hauled and it will be even happier when that happens; it was a bit dated). We had a great time over-all. The ports were fun, there was a relaxed feeling throughout the ship. The Captain was a real bonus. He has a great sense of humor, but all the while we knew we were in good hands...
We enjoyed every minute and can't wait to take another Cruise.
This was my 4th cruise but my first 'small ship' and it was small but very friendly. Our cabin steward was very attentive and helpful and our balcony cabin was terrific. We were even upgraded before we arrived at the ship! We used Room Service several times for breakfast before our excursions and they were always prompt. Our wait staff for dinner were a joy to talk to and they remembered our preferences and had drinks readied at the table before we got there; they were very efficient and entertaining. And you cannot imagine the food on the buffet; almost anything you could wish for. We went to every evening show and the entertainment was up-beat and very professional (I could have done without the Magician, but that's just my preference). We booked an excursion at every port except one and all but one of them were totally awesome. That one was a very nice leisurely ride into the hills away from the ship for a few hours. The port we did not book an excursion was at Santorini as we had heard of the gondola and donkeys and the shopping, so we decided to hoof it for the day. Had a great day!! This cruise was in the middle of a vacation so we had to use the laundry facilities and had to get change from the Passenger Desk. They were very friendly and knew just how many quarters to give us and even sold us stamps for our postcards!! All in all we definitely would cruise with Princess again.
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