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We chose this cruise because of the itinerary (stops in Grand Cayman, Roatan, Belize, and Cozumel) and the fact that it was recently refurbished. It was also a great price since we booked six months prior. This cruise was during our daughter's Spring Break as well as her 16th birthday. She was very excited to travel to so many Caribbean countries in one week. As for the ship itself, we took a Princess cruise to Alaska in 2013 and were very surprised to find the Caribbean Princess had the exact same layout as the one we sailed on then (don't recall the name). It made things easier to find as it was familiar to us, but it was slightly disappointing to feel like we'd been here before after so many years. We wanted an aft facing mini-suite but they were sold out even six months in advance, so we ended up midship. This was absolutely fine, but I think the aft facing provides the best views since you can see both side of the ship while in port. As for the food, the Coral and Islands dining rooms had good decor, great service, and a nice menu. We ate in the Crown dining room for our daughter's birthday and had excellent service and food (the filet Mignon was the best). Well worth the extra $29 per person. We also ate in Steamers, but weren't impressed. The menu is intentionally extremely limited (only clams or fried seafood, nothing broiled) and the placement of the restaurant is where the ship rumbles and shakes during the whole meal. Not worth the extra $12 per person, for us. The International Marketplace buffet was fresh and tasty and we didn't grow bored as the selection kept changing (veggie lasagna was the best!) Entertainment was the best by far of my five previous cruises. The dancing and singing were top notch and the Voice of the Ocean competition was well done (congrats to Hannah on her win for Abba's Dancing Queen!) Most activities were targeted for the very old (e.g. arts and crafts). Average age was 65, I’d guess. Also, each time there was something we were interested in seeing it was at 9:00 a.m. after a late night, so we didn't attend anything other than Bingo and that was as expected. Finally, I was pleasantly surprised at the Casino's selection of slots and variety of table games. I enjoyed myself at the Casino three of the nights (even though I didn't end up winning - big surprise). One downside of this itinerary on Princess is you change clocks four times. Twice one hour behind, then twice one hour ahead. Made for a wonky jet lag experience every morning. On Carnival, we stayed on ship’s time no matter the port time. All in all, it was a wonderful vacation.

Enjoyable Birthday Cruise

Caribbean Princess Cruise Review by ub01914

Trip Details
  • Sail Date: March 2019
  • Destination: Caribbean
  • Cabin Type: Mini-Suite with Balcony
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary (stops in Grand Cayman, Roatan, Belize, and Cozumel) and the fact that it was recently refurbished. It was also a great price since we booked six months prior. This cruise was during our daughter's Spring Break as well as her 16th birthday. She was very excited to travel to so many Caribbean countries in one week. As for the ship itself, we took a Princess cruise to Alaska in 2013 and were very surprised to find the Caribbean Princess had the exact same layout as the one we sailed on then (don't recall the name). It made things easier to find as it was familiar to us, but it was slightly disappointing to feel like we'd been here before after so many years. We wanted an aft facing mini-suite but they were sold out even six months in advance, so we ended up midship. This was absolutely fine, but I think the aft facing provides the best views since you can see both side of the ship while in port. As for the food, the Coral and Islands dining rooms had good decor, great service, and a nice menu. We ate in the Crown dining room for our daughter's birthday and had excellent service and food (the filet Mignon was the best). Well worth the extra $29 per person. We also ate in Steamers, but weren't impressed. The menu is intentionally extremely limited (only clams or fried seafood, nothing broiled) and the placement of the restaurant is where the ship rumbles and shakes during the whole meal. Not worth the extra $12 per person, for us. The International Marketplace buffet was fresh and tasty and we didn't grow bored as the selection kept changing (veggie lasagna was the best!) Entertainment was the best by far of my five previous cruises. The dancing and singing were top notch and the Voice of the Ocean competition was well done (congrats to Hannah on her win for Abba's Dancing Queen!) Most activities were targeted for the very old (e.g. arts and crafts). Average age was 65, I’d guess. Also, each time there was something we were interested in seeing it was at 9:00 a.m. after a late night, so we didn't attend anything other than Bingo and that was as expected. Finally, I was pleasantly surprised at the Casino's selection of slots and variety of table games. I enjoyed myself at the Casino three of the nights (even though I didn't end up winning - big surprise). One downside of this itinerary on Princess is you change clocks four times. Twice one hour behind, then twice one hour ahead. Made for a wonky jet lag experience every morning. On Carnival, we stayed on ship’s time no matter the port time. All in all, it was a wonderful vacation.
ub01914’s Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Embarkation
Dining
Public Rooms
Entertainment
Cabin
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Shore Excursions
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Cabin Review

Mini-Suite with Balcony
Cabin MD D616
The stateroom was refurbished and efficient in design. Three of us (husband, wife, and teenaged daughter) felt comfortable for the week cruise. Plenty of storage to get things out of the way. Blackout curtains were effective. Minimal rumbling since we were midship. There was a funky sewer smell that happened a few times during the cruise, but didn't last long. There were too few outlets, only one by the bed and one in the bathroom. Fortunately we brought an outlet plug that allowed two electronic devises to be plugged in.
Dolphin Deck Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

  • Snorkeling
    The boat ride from the ship was 45-60 minutes each way, and then we landed on a small caye for the day, Rendezvous Caye). We never actually went to Belize. The day was fun, but we left wondering if we had made the right choice. The snorkling wasn't great due to lower visability, but we did see numberous huge conch. The staff was friendly and organized. The lunch was basic chicken and rice for $8.
    View All 173 Snorkeling Reviews
  • Amazing River & Cavern Explore
    Take the Rio Secreto excursion! You won't be disappointed. We booked the Cenote Hopping excursion, but it got cancelled the night before. So we booked the Secret River excursion, unfortunately for twice the money. We were glad we ended up with this excursion, though. Extremely knowleagble river guide (Benito) and friendly tour bus ride to the site and back. Beautiful yet erie experience 85 ft underground in the limestone caves walking through the crystal clear river. Ended with a Mexican buffet lunch that was average.
    View All 135 Amazing River & Cavern Explore Reviews
  • Stingray Swim
    Excellent sting ray encounter on a beautiful, clear water sandbar. Small enough groups to manage getting photos of all within 45 minutes, plus time to hang out and feed squid to the rays. Stops at a reef, not great. And to see starfish. That was the best part! Ship was very crowded, so we had to sit side-by-side the whole day. On previous excursions via Carnival, we had a small boat with room to walk around. We also left from a closer spot to the ship so we motored the inter coastal waterways sightseeing the iguanas. With this excursion we drove father to another port and left from there missing the water sights of Grand Cayman.
    View All 721 Stingray Swim Reviews
  • Gumbalina Park
    Great air conditioned coach and driver. Glad to see some of Roatan on the trip to the park. Excellent tour guide - friendly and informative. Acceptable restrooms and lockers. Small gift shop. The parrots and monkeys were the highlights. Be prepared for a random money or two or three jump on you from every direction!
    View All 159 Gumbalina Park Reviews