Number of Cruises: 5
Cruise Line: Princess
Ship: Grand Princess
Sailing Date: April 1st, 2006
Itinerary: Western Caribbean
Just returned yesterday from the Grand Princess and can certainly say we had a GRAND time!
landed in Houston (IAH) the day before and stayed at a LaQuinta with free
shuttle to and from the airport. (not all the LaQuinta's offer this, so be sure
yours does!) Ate free waffles and fruit the next morning and met our Princess
Shuttle($66.00 round trip per person) at 10:00 back at the airport. The Princess
reps were friendly and efficient and we were on the bus 10 minutes after
arriving! 75 minutes later we were at the ship, and 45 minutes later we were in
We had cabin L303 category CC deck 14 and it was Wonderful! Plenty of space, and one whole wall was a window. Floor to ceiling. We were upgraded from an obstructed ocean view. About 15 steps from the burger and pizza grills! Our room was quiet and in such a convenient location to the pools, the buffet, etc.
Entertainment: We love going to all the shows at night. We choose early seating and then go to the Princess Theater for the big shows, and then usually would go to the Vista Lounge for a smaller act like a comedian, Princess Idol, hypnotist, etc... They also had 3 or 4 lounge bands that played throughout the cruise, and a couple of individual singers that were all very good. The costumes of the singer and dancers were all first rate, as was the talent. Some of the best entertainment of the 4 cruise lines we have tried.
Food: The food was all GOOD. Not fantastic, but we certainly didn't go away hungry. I think Celebrity might have a notch up in their food, but Princess offers plenty of variety at every meal. Good lobster and Beef Wellington! Great chilled soups! Don't forget FREE ICE CREAM every day from 3:30 to 4:30 in Horizon Court Buffet. Don't bother spending extra at the ice cream bar!
Ports: Three ports were tender ports and that was kind of a pain! I much prefer being able to walk off the ship. Tendering gobbles up a lot of time!
Costa Maya--we did the Mayan Ruins with David and Ivan as recommended on the message boards. Ivan had such a passion for his Chacchoben Ruins. It was fantastic and we saved about $25 each by not going with the ship!
Belize--wish we would have gone to see the manatees, but instead we took an on-shore city tour. 1 1/2 hours for $25.00 It was a good intro to the city. Walking around the city looked a little scary, so we chose the bus tour. We then just shopped at the pier, and then returned to the ship.
Playa del Carmen--we did intro to scuba with the ship. My husband enjoyed it, but my mask kept filling up and I didn't have the right bouyancy, I floated near the top. Actually the next day in Cozumel we did a 3 reef snorkel with Mayan Paradise Tours for 37.00 that was fantastic. We saw such a huge variety of fish. Our guides were great. I highly recommend this company, and again we saved at least $25 each from the ship's tour. They even provided perscription goggles for me! We loved our 5th cruise, and will cruise on Caribbean Princess in June with a party of 8. Can't wait!