Planning a Baltic Cruise?  In this installment of our Baltic Cruise Travel Guide Series, join us as we embark on Caribbean Princess for the start of our cruise to the Baltics.

Baltic Cruise on Board Caribbean Princess

After a few days of sightseeing around the city of Southampton, where we visited the SeaCity Museum, and had a good time shopping, the big day for us came finally for our embarkation on Princess Cruises to the Baltic Sea.

It was not our first time on Princess Cruises.  In fact, we were so impressed with our cruise to Alaska on the Diamond Princess that we had henceforth been on the lookout for a suitable second cruise.

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Queen Elizabeth II Terminal at Southampton

The Queen Elizabeth II Terminal where the Caribbean Princess was waiting for us was only a short taxi ride away from our lodgings at the Ibis Southampton Centre.   It pays to turn up early at the cruise terminal. The queues for check-in are mercifully shorter, and we get served almost immediately.

Another round of waiting at the departure lounge, which thankfully was not crowded yet because we checked-in early.  It was going to be a long wait…

Fortunately, the wait is one with a view. At the upper departure lounge is an outdoor view of the waiting Caribbean Princess – our home cum transport for the next 14 days.

The view can’t get any nearer than this.


You get to see loads of frantic activity at the ground where workers were diligently loading the Caribbean Princess with provisions for at least the next few days.

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Food Options at Queen Elizabeth Terminal Southampton

Plan ahead for a long wait ahead.  Fortunately we had our snacks with us.

For those who needed snacks and beverages, there is a small cafe at the departure lounge.


Embarkation was in batches – similar to airlines, those on the cruise line’s loyalty programme had the first right of way to embark first.

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West Quay Shopping Mall and Retail Park, Southampton

Advantage to Board your Cruise early

There is an advantage to boarding early.  Other than avoiding the long queues, those who are on-board early enough can start to enjoy the full-service dining facilities (for us, it would be lunch) which otherwise would close its service at a later hour to prepare for dinner.


Caribbean Princess, here we come!

Check out our next post as we explore Caribbean Princess on board.

First published 7 Feb 2016
Last updated 1 Sep 2019

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