We rolled our way into Bermuda (literally, it was a rough-ride on the sea!) on a sunny Saturday only to get that day's excursion cancelled due to 'bad weather'...what? it was beautiful all day...we suspect the real reason was poor participation, oh well. Sunday dawned overcast and angry, so we figured for sure our diving excursion would be cancelled, as well, but were pleasantly surprised when the boat showed up on schedule. The water was VERY rough from the pending storm, but we road the waves out a couple miles and experienced the MOST AWESOME hands-on marine encounter EVER! (Hartley's Underwater Walk) I have scuba-dived, snuba-dived, snorkeled, and even scooter-ed underwater, but have never gotten a better up-close & personal experience as I did on this excursion! Highly recommended!
Boston was lovely & fun, did the traditional Faneuil Hall/Quincy Market (had an awesome lunch!) and an added Duck Boat Tour...super fun, love the Duck Boats!
In Newport we did the Cliff Walk & Mansions Tour (but NOT through the ship's excursion...that was way expensive, you can get a better deal @ the Visitor's Center a short walk from the pier!) Had to tender in Newport, so remember to sign-up for EARLY for tender tickets...some slow-pokes had to wait a couple hours to disembark! The mansions were breathtaking, but the Cliff Walk was a bit of a let down...beautiful views, but was an awfully hot walk in the heat!
As for the ship, their December 2012 scheduled overhaul can't come a moment too soon...this ship is WAY overdue for updates, both cosmetically AND structurally. The crew was great, extremely helpful & cheerful, no complaints there. The food in the Main Dining Room was atrocious (IMO)...thank goodness for Chops! We ate up there 3 nights...equal number of nights in Main. We even found dinner in the Windjammer better than in the Main...had a delicious Mongolian Stir-fry in WJ on the last evening that was the second-best meal I had on the entire cruise!
Overall, the experience was good, decent value for 8-nights. A bit disappointed we had to spend extra for decent food, but I am admittedly picky. Pools are extremely small, so once the unruly children took over you were forced to flee. Due to poor weather on a couple days, children were allowed into 'Adults Only' Solarium, which was a further disappointment.