Pacific Princess Cruise Review by tutone
- Sail Date: November 2018
- Destination: Transatlantic
- Cabin Type: Mini-Suite with Balcony
Embarkation - We were the only ship for the cruise terminal, as November is low season in Venice. Very easy.
Cabin- 8009 was just gorgeous. We used both US and European outlets as we brought our adapters, there are 4 outlets at the huge desk/dresser. The lamps each have USB ports at the bedside. We took an 18 foot regular extension cord and definitely used it as we settled in to 4 weeks at sea. Our cabin was the most spacious, and is comparable to HAL's Oosterdam signature suite we stayed in Nov 2016. The cabins had been totally refurbished in 2017 and looked like new to us. The room was at least 15 feet wide at the balcony, so we had lots of room and seating to invite other guests to visit with us after dinner etc.
Dining was the greatest as far as food is concerned comparing it to the Veendam (which is 2nd place, and other yearly cruises since 2013 on HAL, Princess, and Scylla River cruises. Our 2 servers were excellent, and I enjoyed the 2 wine tastings that were offered by our waiters for afternoon diversion on sea days. The other cool thing, unknown if serendipitous or planning on their part, but we were assigned to a table of 8, and 3 of us women were raised in California, 3 of us were born within 12 months of each other, and our men were all within 10 years of each other. We got along great for 29 nights!
Excursions - Our private train ticket plan from Civitavecchia to Rome was cancelled due to some problem, so our excursion lady suggested Orvieto as I didn't want to go on a long bus ride to Rome. Orvieto is a place NOT TO MISS! That tour was fantastic! We also bought wine and olive oil and its great too. The other wonderful excursion was to Seville and we were on our own there but it is an easy, beautiful city that has all the initial great cathedrals and palaces located within 0.25 mile and very near our departure point.
On our own, as we met nice people at lunch, and at dinner, we did venture out and rented taxis (negotiated first and split the fare) in Naples, Catania, Athens, Santa Cruz de Tenerife instead of relying on Hop On/Hop Off bus lines.
In ports of Athens and Naples, the Archaeological Museums tours were not offered as excursions by Princess and we thought these 2 were among the best in world (including the Louvre and British Museums).
The taxi driver in Athens made a new negotiation when we arrived at the Athens Museum and proposed we keep him for other sites and he would drop us off at a wonderful open air restaurant in the Plaka, and we accepted. He waited from us the whole time - with driving about 30+ miles roundtrip in traffic - about 5 hours total (4 of us split the fare plus tips totally about 75 Euros per couple). Wonderful day in Athens!
The taxi driver in Naples took us to the Via Duomo (avenue) and dropped us off at the Naples Cathedral/Basilica. It was breathtaking, and we decided to use our feet to take us the 3/4 mile to Archeological Museum (with all the riches and treasures from Herculeneum and Pompeii that was turned over to the Duke of Naples when found over 200 years ago).
We then walked downhill on the Via Toledo from the museum, and its an easy walk to the ship but about an hour if you don't stop to shop and eat.
I think the itinerary was great, especially for first time travelers, and we were 2nd time travelers except to 6 new ports.
We stayed 3 nights in Venice before the cruise. Stayed at Allogia Barbaria which is only 200 feet from the vaporetto stop on the Alilaguna blue line from Marco Polo airport. Then when we left the B&B for the ship, we took the Alilaguna direct to the ship. We didn't have to go through the People Mover or Piazzale Roma, etc. It was easy as we didn't have to lug suitcases over bridges and lots of cobblestones, but was able to visit Venice easily us - an older couple.
We want to go again to Venice, and stay a whole week before leaving. Venice in November is quiet. Never colder at night than 50 F.
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The bathroom had 2 corner medicine cabinets with doors and glass shelving, very easy to organize both passengers' items. Big tub (which we wanted) and the plumbing was not confusing like we found on other ships. Steward came about 4 times a day whenever we weren't around and always had fresh towels for us.
Port & Shore Excursion Reviews
Athens (Piraeus)Wonderful trip to Athens Archeological Museum and open air lunch in the Plaka.View All 1,227 Athens (Piraeus) Cruise Port Reviews
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CataniaShared a taxi with 2 other passengers and drove to Taormina. What a beautiful hilltop town. The drive from Catania to Taormina is breathtaking with Mt. Etna overshadowing the route. The Med is so ideallic from the road.View All 41 Catania Cruise Port Reviews
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CorfuAnother drippy day, off and on, so we took the Hop On/Hop Off and found a lot of neat places to visit and go on the tours at the sites. We were there at the end of Nov so tourism was very light, mostly Greeks on vacation. We return here in 2019.View All 652 Corfu Cruise Port Reviews
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GibraltarOur 2nd visit. Saw Europa Point and used city bus transportation to also take us to cable car to Rock of Gibraltar and to see the monkeys. We'll take another ship excursion in 2019.View All 723 Gibraltar Cruise Port Reviews
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KotorAnother rainy day was forecast and at times it poured but when it did we were safely in a shopping area. The old town is right where the tender drops off passengers. We thought it was a lovely place to visit so we are future booked to go here in 2019.View All 707 Kotor Cruise Port Reviews
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NaplesWe had 2 days in Naples. Fabulous town. Easy to walk around. Gelato is fabulous.View All 1,394 Naples Cruise Port Reviews
Suggest taking taxi or bus uphill from the ship, and walking back. You don't need to go more than 6 blocks up from Dante's Piazza.
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RhodesRainy- My husband didn't want to use an umbrella today so I went with 2 other ladies into town, any easy walk as the rain quit as soon as we left the gangway. Walked around the port to the new town along the city wall, and walked into the walled city near the Grandmasters Palace. Visited there and it rained while we were inside. Most of the shops were closed but some opened just for our ship. Found a great deal on Greek linens in the main old town, and took pictures. The pharmacy was open and pharmacist spoke English well, and helped me with my needs. Nice townspeople.View All 464 Rhodes Cruise Port Reviews
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OrvietoNever bombed, never machine gunned or graffiti....its like a postcard from centuries past as the Duomo is like 500 years ago, and the town is in such good shape.View All 4 Orvieto Reviews
Very happy we booked the cruise tour. There were only 11 of us so we were all able to eat at the same table in the reserved restaurant very near the Duomo. Great lunch as part of tour. Saw a bit of Umbria.
SantoriniNo rain but cold and windy so we didn't book an excursion. Took the cable car and walked for about 2 hours. Shops near cable car were open. Anything else, needed a taxi or bus to go to wine shops, grocery stores, etc. Great pictures, great views, just our small ship in town.View All 987 Santorini Cruise Port Reviews
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SevilleBecause our ship was leaving Cadiz at 3:30 pm, we had only 5 hrs in Seville from 9am to 2 pm. Our bus arrived around 3:25 so we were guaranteed to be waited for.View All 387 Seville Cruise Port Reviews
For those who are in port a longer period of time, just make sure you get more than 5 hours to see Seville. There was so much to see that we didn't get lunch.
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SevilleLargest oldest Gothic cathedral in world with tomb of C. Columbus.View All 387 Seville Cruise Port Reviews
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Seville on Your OwnWonderful guide on the bus and at meeting place.View All 24 Seville on Your Own Reviews
Just needed more time in Seville as we arrived at 9am but cathedral didn't open until 11am. It was a Saturday.
SibenikRainy day forecasted so we walked into town instead of taking excursion.View All 17 Sibenik Cruise Port Reviews
Converted $25 into 180 Krona at money exchange booth on main street across from grocery store. Bought some chocolates, local Croatian wines and Maraska local walnut liquor for under 110 Krona. Later found out the walnut wine isn't readily available in US or other European countries and it tasted better than brandy with about 25% alcohol.
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TenerifeTook a taxi to the other side of island and visited La Laguna and multiple other little towns until we ended up for lunch at a seaside resort town. Weather was gorgeous and warm.View All 468 Tenerife Cruise Port Reviews
Food and wine was great. Picked up big bottle of Spanish olive oil at local market.
Forget to mention, the last week of cruise including this port had Christmas markets!
Lots of local treats to buy.
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