I'm an experienced cruiser, but a transpacific itinerary from North America to Asia is something I've always wanted to do (I've already done the transpacific to Hawaii). I also want to visit Siberia (Russia), where these cruises generally call at.
In 2001 I've found two options:
1. Regal Princess, 19 nt., Vancouver to Osaka, Dpt. Sep 23 01
Since the itinerary doesn't appear to be online, I'll be happy to post it here:
2 At Sea
4 At Sea-cruising Glacier Bay
5 At Sea-cruising College Fjord
6 Ancourage (seward)
8-13 At Sea
14 Sapporo, Japan
15 At Sea
16 Vladivostok, Russia (Siberia)
17 At Sea
18 Pusan, South Korea
19 Hiroshima, Japan
20 Osaka, Japan (Disembarkation)
I've done the Alaska ports, except I've never been to Kodiak. There seem to be better ports of call in Alaska than Anchorage, but I guess the ship must stop them to stock up for the long journey across the ocean. The idea of navigating the pacific is attractive, as well as all the ports on the other side. Again, Siberia is a place where I really want to go, as is Pusan and Hiroshima (I've been to Osaka before).
2. NCL is repositioning their Norwegian Wind to Asia, and the journey is slightly longer than the Regal's. It has more days at sea (13 rather than eight), only one Alaska port, and disembarks in Beijing rather than Osaka.
But I harbor reservations about NCL on such a long journey. I've never sailed the Crown or Regal Princess, but I have sailed long voyages on the Royal Princess, and Princess does a good job of handling long voyages. We're not that into organized activities, but they can be good for a change of pace. We've also sampled the bigger, newer Princess ships and overall we like the line. We haven't sailed NCL. I don't think they have too much experience in these long, long voyages, so again I am not sure about sailing on them.
As for the Regal, any comments on this ship? Again, we've never sailed on her. Any suggestions for the cabins? We'll likely get a balcony cabin, or maybe a suite or mini-suite, since it's such a long cruise with many days at sea.
We haven't yet contacted our travel agent for prices on either, but I did a quick check of NCL prices on their web booking engine on their site. The top suite aboard prices around $300 a day, which is great value in my book (but long repo cruises tend to be cheap). A regular suite with balcony can be had for under $200 a day. I don't know how Princess prices in this regard.
We are doing the reverse repositioning on this itinerary in April and will be glad to share a report with you. Starting in Osaka on 21 April ending up in Vancouver on 9 May and staying over two nights. Do plan on a pre cruise package in Vancouver. It is beautiful, clean and friendly and the exchange rate is in OUR favor.
Not too worried about the Pacific. I take meclizine every day (ask your doctor for prescription - more pills for far less than Bonine) just to make sure. It doesn't make me sleepy and I don't have to be concerned about missing anything because of mal de mer.
We just did a Transatlantic crossing from Cannes to Barbados on the new Royal Clipper - 5 masted 500' sailing ship. First night and day out of Cannes was the worst storm we have ever been in. So I think we have had our storm of the century. Rest of the 21 day trip was fine!
The trip on the Regal Princess takes us to places we've never been for a price we didn't mind paying so we are really looking forward to it. Be sure to give your travel agent your Past Passenger numbers - you can get a slightly better rate and higher eligibility for upgrade if available. She/he might also keep checking with Princess about specials even after you have booked. We started in a Cat G guarantee, and I kept watching in the computer at the agency, found a special for less and used the difference to get us all the way up to Cat C with a cabin assignment.