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-   -   Help deciding on a Panama Canal Cruise (http://www.cruisereviews.com/forum/ports-call-chat/1006-help-deciding-panama-canal-cruise.html)

Berick1234 01-08-2010 08:16 PM

Help!!!!

I need some help deciding on a Panama Canal Cruise...Best time to go, 13 or 15 day...I want to go all the way thru....Suggestions on cruiseline (I've been on most of them, so I'm not set on any one ship)....I was going to Alaska for the third in May, but going to skip it and go on the Panama Canal cruise instead....Thanks for any help and suggestions....

Bob E

f-mattox 01-08-2010 11:22 PM

I guess it's no secret that I'm a big fan of Princess. I've done the Ft. Lauderdale to Los Angeles cruise twice: first as an 18 day that was actually a back-to-back (Panama Canal and Mexican Riviera on Sea Princess); and more recently the Exotic Panama Canal on Island Princess. It was 15 days when I went but they have cut Ocho Rios and it is now 14 days.

I"ve done the cruise in April and in May; weather was perfect both trips. I hear it is unbearably hot in the Summer; and of course hurricane season in the fall.

Sea Princess, Royal Princess and Pacific Princess only have one sailing each. Island Princess and Coral Princess have several different itineraries. I like the Exotic itinerary because you get a chance to see Nicaragua and Guatemala. Huatulco, Mexico is nice too, but like Ixtapa, a master-planned resort destination--which is okay, but kind of sanitized.

You can also see Guatemala, Nicaragua and Huatulco on the 10 day Panama Canal Adventurer and the 18 day and 20 day Grand Panama Canal. There is also a 19 day Pacific Panama Canal, but it dosen't make a full transit of the canal. I think the Exotic at 14 days may be just right for you.

Hope this helps a little. I also just posted some shore excursion suggestion for this itinerary in the Princess Cruises forum for another member. Anything else I can help you with, please just ask.

Rick

cousins 01-09-2010 07:02 AM

We are going to fly to Acapulco in Oct and cruise from there to FT Lauderdale one way 10 days....missing less work but doing the full pass-through transit! I can't wait!

peter l 01-09-2010 07:23 AM

Cousins, who are you doing that cruise with, I'd like to check out that option as well. Thanks in advance.

Peterl

Cruise Fanatic 01-09-2010 07:55 AM

Princess does that.

Berick1234 01-09-2010 11:25 AM

Thanks Rick,

I will use your input and do somemore checking...late spring sounds like the best time to go.....This will be our 23rd cruise, so am excited to try this one....

Thanks again,

Bob

cousins 01-09-2010 12:54 PM

princess Oct 16-26....not spring breakers here!

cousins 01-09-2010 12:58 PM

oops....no spring breakers at this time....we're from FL and this is really late for any hurricanes also...so we're not woryy about that.
Princess was the only ones we found to do this. we booked through an online cruise website and got a category BE balcony 9th deck for $1469 plus taxes/fees etc...
I heard Princess can also charge I believe: $9 per person per day for gas/oil if it goes over $70 a barrel....has anyone been charged this?

Cruise Fanatic 01-09-2010 01:51 PM

Quote:

Originally posted by cousins:
oops....no spring breakers at this time....we're from FL and this is really late for any hurricanes also...so we're not woryy about that.
Princess was the only ones we found to do this. we booked through an online cruise website and got a category BE balcony 9th deck for $1469 plus taxes/fees etc...
I heard Princess can also charge I believe: $9 per person per day for gas/oil if it goes over $70 a barrel....has anyone been charged this?
Normally mid October would be toward the end of hurricane season. In 2009 hurricane Ida hit on November 4th.

LisaP 01-09-2010 02:44 PM

Bob, it's always my pleasure to post the following article: Panama Canal Cruise, by Alan Walker. Alan was a longtime SeaLetter columnist and, in this article, provided a wealth of information about cruising the Canal, from its history to best viewing locations. As it was written in 2001, you'd still have to research the ships, but this is a great starting point as to what to expect once onboard.


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