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5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
We enjoyed the cruise around Japan with the view to visit Hirosaki Castle Park for Sakura or Cherry Blossom which usually peak between 22Apr to 1May. It was our main highlight and we cherished the beautiful sakura. Short 15min walk from ... Read More
We enjoyed the cruise around Japan with the view to visit Hirosaki Castle Park for Sakura or Cherry Blossom which usually peak between 22Apr to 1May. It was our main highlight and we cherished the beautiful sakura. Short 15min walk from port, 40 min direct train trip from JR Aomori to JR Hirosaki and 20 min walk to Castle. Park entry was free. Views were fantastic. Public holiday due to Emperor Hirohito abdication and Emperor Naruhito ascending to throne, meant the place had lots of food stalls, crowd and festive ambience. Feel very safe and pleasant throughout. Cruise overall was alright. Weather and food was good, generally. Enjoyed the Princess production shows like To Be Born Wild ( rock n roll ) and Secret Silk ( great display of props but audio vocals were muffled eventhough seated in centre of thearte ...needs imporvement). Other guests entertainers were a bit dull but I give credit to Dominic Duo at the Wheelhouse Bar. We danced to their tunes. Food quality and service in the main dining room were alright but not always in the Horizon Court as it is very busy with people and lacks the ambience. Food quality can be unappealing sometimes. Same goes with breakfast room service. Did not use the pizzaria but enoyed the matcha ice cream from the parlour. Port visits were not that attractive but there were farewell local dance and Samurai performances in Sakata and Aomori. People were very welcoming and taxi drivers were very polite and very fair in their fares and please take back any small change and receipt given out of politeness to them. No need for tips. Service with a smile. We did a bit of shopping in downtown Busan after we figured how to use their Metro. Get entry to right train platform as you can't walk over to the correct platform if wrong like other city metros. We wasted our ticket but it is alright. A small price to pay for the adventure. Busan was lively downtown in Art Street. 1 USD to 1000 Won ans 1 Aud to 800 Won. Prices are in their 000s. A small drink at a street vendor cost me 3500Won or 3.5USD. Views across Kanmon Straits between Kyushu and Honshu, was interesting if you happen to know about the great sea battles fought here that created the Kamakura Shogunate in 11th Century. However, I much prefer the nightime view of Busan Bridge which changed colours every 30 seconds. Our ship sailed under it at about 10.30pm. on its way to Sakata. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2019
We wanted a cruise around Japan but had no specific ports in mind. This one came up in an email from Princess so we booked it. After we visited a Buddhist temple and the famous fish market in Busan, South Korea, we stopped at 3 smaller ... Read More
We wanted a cruise around Japan but had no specific ports in mind. This one came up in an email from Princess so we booked it. After we visited a Buddhist temple and the famous fish market in Busan, South Korea, we stopped at 3 smaller cities. First was Sakata and the people of the town welcomed us with open arms - they did performances on the pier and waved goodbye as we left. So touching. Aomore had lots to offer - we went to see the famous four-story paper mache floats and a pottery place that was about an hour outside of the city. Miyako was the area decimated by the 2011 tsunami and this was the first time Princess stopped at this port so there was a big celebration. School children and residents all came out on this very windy day to bear witness to this special day. As part of the entertainment, the ship hosted a special drumming group from South Korea and the show was excellent. I was adjusting to the time change so I missed most of the other shows but I heard from other cruise guests that they were very good. From my point of view, this cruise was perfect and up to the top-notch standards I always expect and receive from Princess - my favourite cruise line. Staff is always friendly, helpful and personable. The balcony cabin I had was the perfect size (and believe it or not, even bigger than the hotel room I had in Tokyo). Read Less
11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
This cruise was a mistake.The cost of the shore excursions was over the top in price.We were following one shore excursion and you could not understand the Tour Guide anyway so thank god i didnt pay for that.Every time they had an ... Read More
This cruise was a mistake.The cost of the shore excursions was over the top in price.We were following one shore excursion and you could not understand the Tour Guide anyway so thank god i didnt pay for that.Every time they had an announcement over the ships intercom you had to then listen to the whole thing again in Japanese and some times this could take up to 5 mins. Another let down was the rundown condition of the Club Class Mimi Suite we had.It is starting to show its age and for what you pay it just isnt good enough.You could hardly open the door to the balcony, the area around the fridge was horrible with screw caps hiding holes from who knows what.Cabinet doors that did not stay shut. Draws that did not slide to open and the list just goes on and on.But i think the main problem was the Shower being over the bath.Do they not get that most of the people on board are elderly and find it extremly hard to use this setup.The only thing that saved this trip for us were the people in the Club Class restaurant who were the best and they are George Gilbert and Pachi i thank them very much for making every meal experience amazing,Thank you again Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
We chose Diamond Princess because it tied in with a Japan cherry blossom tour, but were somewhat concerned by some negative reviews about the state of the ship and its service. However, we found the ship to be spic and span, just out of a ... Read More
We chose Diamond Princess because it tied in with a Japan cherry blossom tour, but were somewhat concerned by some negative reviews about the state of the ship and its service. However, we found the ship to be spic and span, just out of a period in drydock in Singapore where it received a spruce-up. Cabins, food, dining service and the general program were quite good although some of the land excursions at minor Japanese ports and Busan Korea were not exciting and quite expensive for what you got. The fellow passengers were mainly Australian/American/European with Japanese and other Asian guests making up maybe a third. Some reviewers have felt that the ship is too Japanese, but we found it to have a sensible balance of Western and Japanese cuisine and activities. We were however quite disappointed that a number of the usual Princess specialty restaurants were not offered - no Chefs Table, no Steakhouse. Only Sabotinis Italian was offered for online booking. We dined there but found that while pleasant, it had a limited menu and was nothing special. Drinks are expensive on board. There were some good shows. We have two specific complaints. The first was that it often was difficult to find a quiet space for reading as the lounges are used for activities or have video screens blaring all the time. The adult lounge (The Sanctuary) requires booking at $40 per day, and appeared empty most of the time. Our other complaint was that they put out bowls of fruit which looked appetising, but were unripe, hard and inedible. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
I have a disabled adult daughter who had studied Japanese at the U of Illinois and ever since had wanted to visit Japan. I chose a cruise as I knew the bathroom facilities in the accessible cabins would fit her needs. I took a chance and ... Read More
I have a disabled adult daughter who had studied Japanese at the U of Illinois and ever since had wanted to visit Japan. I chose a cruise as I knew the bathroom facilities in the accessible cabins would fit her needs. I took a chance and did 4 nights in Tokyo first and this worked out very well. I used a company, Inside Japan, and highly recommend them. This was my 14th Princess cruise. My disappointment was that for all intents and purposes we were on a Caribbean cruise. Yes, there were a fair number of Japanese and Japanese food available, but that was it. My wife said she could not find the first Japanese item in the gift shop. Entertainment was very good, but the same as usual. It would seem that Princess would want to feature some Asian culture. Nothing in the ship's decor said Asia and this ship I believe stays in that market all the time. When I spoke with a Princess customer relations persons after the cruise, she said that the customer base thought it was too much Asian. Thinking to myself, why would someone travel 6000 or so miles across the Pacific or come from Australia to take a Caribbean cruise? In terms of my disabled daughter, it was a great trip. I had to make all my own shore arrangements as she can not do steps, get on a tour bus. I got no pre-cruise help from Princess. I wanted to try and learn what to expect at the different ports. I did bring along a Japanese friend of my daughter's who served as her and our main interpreter. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
This was not our first choice itinerary, but were never cleared from the waitlist on a Circle Japan cruise, so opted for this since it fit our schedule and was during the cherry blossom season. Ship could use some sprucing up and showed ... Read More
This was not our first choice itinerary, but were never cleared from the waitlist on a Circle Japan cruise, so opted for this since it fit our schedule and was during the cherry blossom season. Ship could use some sprucing up and showed signs of age, surprising for Princess. My top gripes were the mediocre food in the dining room and Sabatini's and the so-so entertainment and onboard activities, with the exception of a terrific singer brought on toward the end of the cruise. The guest lecturer was an American woman who delivered pretty boring, academic lectures about ancient Japanese art and practices. It would have been so much more engaging to hear about current Japanese cultural stuff like the significance of cherry blossom season, temples vs shrines, food, Japanese toilets, and a lot more that we were experiencing on our excursions. This ship does not offer 'anytime dining', which meant that we sat at the same table nightly with the same passengers. We would have loved to have met others! We don't care for the ship excursions, so I did a ton of research and found Japanese VOLUNTEER tour guides through the Japan National Travel Org. They were lovely, eager to share their knowledge and love of their hometowns. I brought small gifts as thank yous, called 'omiyage'. (Sees 'Little Pops' candy.) Great way to meet locals! Overall, Princess delivers a good experience for the price, but having taken 10+ cruises with them, am ready for another cruise line. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
Chose the cruise for the itinerary. Wonderful ports. The food never disappoints. Cabin service was great. The entertainment was varied. My favorite is always the production numbers and Secret Silk was outstanding. I would have liked ... Read More
Chose the cruise for the itinerary. Wonderful ports. The food never disappoints. Cabin service was great. The entertainment was varied. My favorite is always the production numbers and Secret Silk was outstanding. I would have liked the others to be a bit longer. The ship seemed to have issues. There were a number of leaks with buckets around to catch the water. There were power issues in some of the rooms. Our dining experience is always good. The food was varied and prepared to order. The wait staff was attentive, courteous and friendly. They seemed to enjoy their work. The shore excursions were awful. We only did 2 and that was too many. The experience was terrible. Everything seemed to be very unorganized. We did private tours in most ports and had great experiences. I love Princess and will continue to sail with them. I hope this was just a fluke. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
We chose this cruise based on a couple of the cities that were on the itinerary that we had never been to before. Unfortunately, when we arrived onboard to our stateroom, there was a letter stating that Koh Samui had been removed from the ... Read More
We chose this cruise based on a couple of the cities that were on the itinerary that we had never been to before. Unfortunately, when we arrived onboard to our stateroom, there was a letter stating that Koh Samui had been removed from the itinerary and they had replaced it with Sihanoukville in Cambodia. This was not a huge issue, considering we had not been to Sihanoukville before, so we were looking forward to going there instead, as an alternative. In relation to the shore excursion, we opted for the free shuttle that was offered. After waiting 1.5 hours in the baking sun on the port in a huge line, we were informed that the shuttle buses were stuck in traffic and they didn't know how long it would be till they arrived. A guest suggested that a drink of cold water and some umbrellas for shade would be a good idea for the elderly and the children stuck in the line (this was after waiting for over an hour) and finally we received them. When one shuttle bus finally arrived back in port, the passengers who got off it said they had been on the bus for 3 hours. They had been stuck in traffic in the one spot for 2 hours going nowhere and then the bus turned around and brought them back to port. They didn't get to the market at all. Another passenger who had gotten a private taxi to the market said that it wasn't even worth going to. Very busy, crowded and only items relevant to the locals were being sold there. We had been keen to go to the market and then get a tuk-tuk down to the beach for a few hours. We thought they should have found out beforehand how many people were interested in going on the free shuttle so they could have had an idea of numbers instead of just waiting to see how many people lined up to get off. We were very disappointed to have missed out on this opportunity, especially after the disappointment of missing out on Koh Samui. The reason they had given us for bypassing Koh Samui was that there would be too many ships in port on the day of our arrival. These itineraries are arranged a year in advance. This did not seem like a very valid or viable reason, given that if Koh Samui were going to turn away a ship, it not likely be 3,000 cashed passengers. The tv advertisements for the cruises always show just a couple of people enjoying privacy and space on the ship and on the shore excursions. this is not the reality. But if you go with that in mind, you wont be too shocked at how busy it is and the shore excursions are always a bit of a rush and expensive. The food is very good and I loved having the formal nights. It is lovely to get dressed up and have a fancy dinner. It was also really good that everyone else was dressed up too. It wasn't just a few people, nearly everyone joined in on the formal nights. We were also pleased that once a movie had been shown on the outdoor cinema that it was then available to watch again in your stateroom on your tv. There was a great variety of movies and shows available in your stateroom. We purchased the soft drink package before we left. We had a note in our stateroom that the complimentary tumblers that came with the package were all gone and more would be arriving soon. In the meantime, they gave us a bottle of water each for our room as a thank you for our patience whilst we waited for them to arrive. A few days into the cruise, we went to the reception desk to enquire about the tumblers only to be told that the bottle of water was all we were being given. The card we had stating that we would be receiving the tumblers was wrong and there was nothing we could do about it. Again, a bit disappointing, but it didn't detract from our overall relaxing holiday that we enjoyed. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
We always love the Princess cruises, they offer information on other cultures through their excurisions. We love to visit other lifestyles , eat local cuisine and buy some hand made tems for rrat memories. The staff is usually head ... Read More
We always love the Princess cruises, they offer information on other cultures through their excurisions. We love to visit other lifestyles , eat local cuisine and buy some hand made tems for rrat memories. The staff is usually head and shoulders above any vacation resort. A floating city with plenty of choices for things to do and eat and someone to take pictures in a cute way so you may remember the moment. You could relax by any of the pools , restaurants, bars ,or fitness spots. You can spoil yourself with a spa treatment play on the internet read a book from the library or just relax and soak up the sun on a deck chair. There is usually high quality entertainment to enjoy or even participate in. If you are a jewelery junky, you will be in heaven. High quality designer pieces at ressonable prices. In all it is a wonderful way to travel and relax without having to drive where you are going. A definate way to get away. Always two thumbs up. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2019
My first time with the Princess, after 4 other cruises It was great, good ship, clean, good itinerary, great food and very welcoming stafffs. Embarkation process was excellent, took me less than 1 hour to be on board. Disembarkation ... Read More
My first time with the Princess, after 4 other cruises It was great, good ship, clean, good itinerary, great food and very welcoming stafffs. Embarkation process was excellent, took me less than 1 hour to be on board. Disembarkation was good too although not as quick as the embarkation. The only complaint was the room, the air conditoner fan was a bit too noisy but luckily did not disturb our sleep. Jogging track was not not nice as at the end of the track you have to go upstair, obviously not an ideal track for runner or jogger. Food was excellent, both the buffet and seating restaurant. Ample tables, not hard to find a table during busy time. Had several pools, and ample lazy chairs, easy to find a place Shore excursions were mostly well managed, except the Sihanoukville, which underestimated the local traffic condition. Theatre shows were of high class but not at the other places like bars and lounges. Read Less
Diamond Princess Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 0.0
Dining 3.5 0.0
Entertainment 4.0 0.0
Public Rooms 4.0 0.0
Fitness Recreation 4.0 0.0
Family 4.5 0.0
Shore Excursion 4.0 0.0
Enrichment 5.0 0.0
Service 4.0 0.0
Value For Money 4.0 0.0
Rates 4.0 0.0

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