My husband and I cruised on the Monarch of the Seas on November 2 with our 7 and 3 year old. 3 nights with stops in Nassau and Cococay.
We had a GREAT time. I will say that we had a Grand Suite which definitely made it more enjoyable with more room and a few perks but I think we would have had a great time in another cabin as well.
I know RC is retiring the boat next year but for those considering this cruise it is a great weekend away. I think it caters to all types also. Young singles looking to party a little, 30 and 40 somethings with small kids, and mature cruisers as well.
The ship seemed in great shape to me. The staff was wonderful. And my kids loved the Ocean Adventure program (my 7 yo had to be dragged out every night!) Did not get a chance to use the spa. The food was just fine. I am not someone who believes cruise food is all that (mass produced) but I ate plenty! The Windjammer was a little too icky to me but if you like the Golden Corral type atmosphere you'll love it. The food was fine, I just don't see why anyone would eat in there when the dining room is so much nicer.
We did the dolphin encounter/dolphin swim at the Blue Lagoon and it was really cool. Just hung out on Cococay. The snorkel area was closed because of the hurricane but my husband cruised around the swimming area and saw some things.
Getting on and off the boat was very quick and easy.