I truly believe a vacation is what you make of it. We flew into Miami on April 1st-the night before the cruise and stayed at Sofitel Miami. The hotel was very nice and served its purpose-we slept! At 11:30 the next morning our shuttle was there to pick us up to take us to the ship. Embarkation was a breeze-maybe 20 minutes from arrival at port to getting on the ship. At first I felt herded towards certain areas-but realized later that the staff wanted to make sure you were going where you needed to be to have lunch and get ready for sail away. Lunch in the buffet was pretty good and they were setting up for a BBQ for dinner that night.
Muester drill was at 4:30-didn't really do a lot. we stood in lines and watched a guy put on his life vest. After this was done, my DH and I grabbed a couple beverages and decided on a private sail away party on our balcony cabin. We met our cabin steward-Christopher-he was great and was always there when we needed anything. He knew us by name and spoke to us whenever and wherever he saw us.
For dinner, we chose to skip the BBQ and went to Crossings dining room-MDR Aft where it was lobster for dinner. Our waiter recommended several starters and his selections were amazing. Our favorite part was the desserts-the key-lime pie is to die for!
The next day was Freeport. We hadn't booked an excursion for this port and the is a regret that I have. We slept in a little and went to Il Dialgo for breakfast--although this is a pay restaurant at night, breakfast is included in your fair. They serve waffles and omelets-but they don't start serving until 8am.
After breakfast, we went out to explore the little market there and do a little shopping. We got some cute souvenirs. Afterwards we went back to the ship, grabbed a little lunch and hit the hot tubs and pools. I decided to work on my tan!
2nd day, we stopped in Nassau. we had booked the sub experience for our excursion-the drivers are a little scary but get you there. We were fitted for our wetsuits and climbed aboard a boat to take us to the dive site. We were split into teams and were told that we would be able to snorkel while we waited our turn in the subs. This was our first time snorkeling and after a few false starts and a couple of gallon swallowed salt water, we got the hang of it--it was really cool seeing all the fish and the reef. When our turn came for the sub, we were a little nervous but excited--as you are going down there are divers that check on you to make sure you are OK--then when your group is down, they will hook you all together and bring the fish right up to you--they feed them dog food! This excursion is a little pricey-I think it was around $150 per person but it is well worth it--plus you are offered a video and pics or your trip to purchase at the end.
Our last stop was in GSC. We were a little disappointed with this island. We had booked parasailing but it was too windy to do. So, we laid on the beach for a little while-there were plenty of chairs for everyone! After a little while, it looked like rain and so we went to check out the mini straw market and eat. The food on the island was pretty good and plentiful. We got back on the ship around 1pm, showered and napped.
Entertainment on the ship was really good. Andrew Kennedy was one of the comedians that we went to see--he did 2 different shows-1opening nite and 2nd was the last nite. The games are funny-Newlywed/not so newlywed, the perfect couple, are a couple that come to mind. We also enjoyed the dance classes and the white hot party on Wednesday nite--In all the advertisements I saw, they mentioned you could buy a t-shirt--this is not true anymore.
Also, if you buy a soda package, you no longer get a thermal cup--you just get a sticker on your key card.
We had a really good time-our cabin was nice, not too much noise and in a great location-close to the dining room and pools. I would recommend if you are a lite sleeper that you check out the white noise app for your phone--we used it on our tablet and never heard a thing at nite!