FUN-travel: Slow Boat to Singapore Trip Recap

April 15, 2016 by  

Travel is Very Personal! – This was our 22nd cruise and by far the longest ever! The Full Monte – Crystal’s world cruise – was 103 days and we were so-o-o glad we opted to just do half of it. For us it was too much “vanilla” (the same flavor) and we like more land touring mixed in.

  • 22 of the 46 days were spent at sea and we covered a total of 12,881 nautical miles. We turned our clocks back a total of 6 times. When we left San Francisco the temp was 56 and when we hit New Caledonia it was 86.  We crossed the equator in both directions. And amazingly, out of the 20 ports we visited, we had only been to Sydney together.

Komodo Island, Indonesia 2016 2

So how did Crystal rate?

  • Food & Beverage – consistently the best food, the best cappuccino (only at the Bali, Indonesia 2016 108Bistro with the “real espresso” machine – only problem is they don’t open until 9 am), complementary wines were fairly decent with a good selection. There were plenty of diet options with many “themed” lunches at the Lido buffet. And there was always an ample supply of jumbo shrimp, specialty cheeses, and awesome Angus burgers cooked to order.
  • Staterooms – their basic stateroom is 269 sq ft including the balcony, with only 226 sq ft of room space. Too small for us for that long! The bathroom included double sinks and a bathtub/shower. The standard straight line, no walk in closet, left much to be desired! While there were ample hangars and space for a lengthy cruise, the logistics made it impossible for two people to get dressed at the same time.
  • The Veranda – having one is great (and everyone wants one) but what’s the point when it’s hot, humid or raining. (We always book the cheapest room and are very grateful every time we get upgraded)
  • Excursions – the few we paid for were “hurry up and wait” and way over priced!
  • Entertainment – passengers rave about the variety of the shows. We went to maybe a third of them and we would rate a couple of them as excellent. But then they started getting repeated when a new segment started. That was a huge turn off for us!

37 At Sea 2016

Barista by Day, Sommelier by Night – Adrian’s wide Cheshire Cat grin greeted us almost every morning and those few times we “got” to dine in the specialty restaurant Prego at no charge. And he was totally on top of his game! We ordered the same thing every morning. To make it as efficient as possible (and so we got it quicker) we used sign language. All we had to do was walk in, make eye contact, and hold up 2 fingers. That meant we both wanted our usual. Now for refills, whoever held up 1 finger got theirs. He was the best!

32 At Sea 2016

Awesome Afzal – my favorite Bartender – despite having prematurely thinning hair, it didn’t detract from his chiseled and dashingly good Indian looks. And when the bar filled to capacity he never broke a sweat. Shake, stir, blend, and pour. All night long he plied his craft with precise execution. After 10 years of working in cruise ships bars he said, “I have seen pretty much every bizarre thing you can think of.”

  • Pretty Lucky – as we managed to avoid Cyclone Winston, which totally devastated Fiji and turned out to be the most powerful storm on record in the Southern Hemisphere. Then tsunami warnings were issued when a magnitude 7.8 earthquake struck in the Indian Ocean off Sumatra. Finally, as we cruised through the Straits of Malacca we found out that it’s notorious for Somali pirates and where Captain Phillips’ ship was hijacked!
82 Bali, Indonesia 2016

Getting to the Temple on Time!

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