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Welcome to day 4 of our Princess Cruises California Coast Cruise aboard the Crown Princes. This review is being shared in partnership with Princess Cruises who hosted us on this adventure. All photos and opinions are our own.
This was our second and final full day at sea.
The next few days we have port days until we disembark on Saturday… so we lived it up and did as much as we could on the ship! We all feel like we squished two days into one with all the things we did.
The morning started with room service delivery of coffee, fruit, and baked goods. I am getting used to having my morning start this way, and I'm afraid it's going to be a rude awakening when we get back home, and I have to make my own coffee, or Pete has to start making it for us again!
After everyone was ready for the day, we headed to the Horizon Court Buffet for breakfast. It was just as good as the first time we had it, and the service was great too!
Emmy wanted to get back to her friends in the kids club, so did Ash. So they both headed to the clubs right after breakfast.
That left Maddie, Pete and me to do what we wanted.
We've learned that although the teen room opens early with the other age group rooms, the teens don't start coming in until much later because they stay up late and sleep in. My teen wishes she could do that too… but with a five-year-old around that's not going to happen.
We all love to read and with the day ahead of us to relax we decided to head to the lending library. It was gorgeous. They have a large selection of fiction, non-fiction and research books. The research books are for use in the library only and feature a ton of travel and locations to visit. After this beautiful week, I already wanted to plan another cruise, and these books have pushed me that much closer to doing it sooner rather than later!
Today it felt like every time I venture out of our room; I discover another place on the ship that I didn't see before. Crooners Bar is now one of my favorite spots. The view from the room is stunning, and I love the little bistro tables. We walked around in the ship some more and then it was time to collect the kids from kids club and have lunch. We ate at the buffet again. There were sandwiches, fruit, a carving station, salads, plus much more. After lunch, we checked the two younger ones back into kids club.
Maddie ended up leaving us somewhere along the way when she stopped to do some reading with a soy milk latte (so thankful that Princess was able to have soy milk for her)… so Pete and I headed up to the pool area to relax and then go for a walk.
We saw The Sanctuary, which we are planning on going to later this week… and some sports and recreation areas.
This is a view of the adult only pool.
This is the only view of this pool that I plan to see because I think it's more fun with the kids… but if you are traveling sans kids or maybe while the kids are at kids clubs, then this is a much quieter pool option. We laid back and watched a movie on the big screen above the big pool (Skyfall) and rested a bit. It was warm without being too hot out, and the sun felt great! There were people enjoying the ocean air, some swimming and kids snacking on pizza and milkshakes. It was a wonderful early afternoon.
At 3:30 The teen and I went for Afternoon Tea.
It's served daily, and we've been waiting to try it. It did not disappoint! Tea information is shared each day in the Princess Patter, the daily on board newsletter. We use the Patter to plan our days, and I kept them with me each day to know when and where to go for the fun!
Evening came way too quickly.
We picked up the kids again from kids club just in time to have dinner at Sabatini's Restaurant. It's a specialty dining choice with an extra cover charge, and it was well worth it. Although it's more luxurious, kids are totally welcome, and our waiter went above and beyond to make sure our daughters enjoyed the meal. We called ahead that morning to make our reservation, and we had them note that we were vegetarian with a vegan in our party. When we arrived the head waiter already had some ideas, but welcomed suggestions for what we would like. He even offered to bring food over from the other specialty restaurants if we wanted.
Our dishes were all presented in a beautiful manner…
This was our favorite starter…
The teen and little one both had this pasta dish… the little one even ordered a second plate! It was specially made for my daughter's vegan diet.
This was the vegetarian offering, manicotti!
And polenta for the table, it was so flavorful!
And then it was time for dessert… the older two left us to meet up with their friends in the kids clubs, so Pete, Emmy and I split all the desserts!
If you get only one dessert this whole cruise it HAS to be the chocolate tiramisu.
It was smooth and creamy with just the right mix of cocoa and espresso! This one thing was worth the extra charge to dine here. I would highly recommend eating at one of the specialty restaurants at least once on your cruise.
After dinner, we strolled the ship and took in a bit of the show Motor City and enjoyed a little show from a circus performer.
I had a hot chocolate, and it was dreamy! I met back up with the teen, and we headed to the top of the ship for Stargazing@Sea! We had a guide that shared a practical seminar of the constellations. It was a bit cool up there, so we cuddled up with towels and blankets. They turn the lights off in that part of the ship and the stars “pop” out in the night sky. They do this only once per cruise so make sure to go to this when it is offered. It was at 10:45 at night so maybe a bit on the late side for the younger kids, although kids of all ages seem to get a second wind in the evening so I would imagine quite a few could make it and enjoy the stars!
Tomorrow we dock in Santa Barbara! We will be anchoring offshore and taking a tender in… a new experience for Pete and the girls. We don't have any solid plans other than to walk around and enjoy the city. Maybe some shopping? The Little One collects magnets from everywhere we visit, and we display them in our kitchen, so we will need to find a magnet for her. It's been years since I've been to Santa Barbara so I'm excited to relax and explore.
What is your favorite way to relax and explore a new city?
PS. See our complete Crown Princess, Princess Cruises Review and Detailed Daily Posts Here.