This was our second cruise to the Southern Caribbean and we really enjoyed this itinerary.
Port - San Juan, Puerto Rico. This was our second cruise out of this port and we got on the boat quickly with no problems. We did not venture out into San Juan.
St. Thomas - we visited with friends here, but have been here before. Megan's Bay is always a good choice on this island. If you enjoy shopping for jewelry you will be a happy camper here.
St. Lucia - we opted for the Whale and Dolphin sight seeing tour. We did see whales and dolphins but my motion sickness got the better of me. It was a good tour. There were shops right at the port that had good shopping.
Guadeloupe - Surprisingly this is another port where passengers are leaving and coming from the cruise. We were wondering why there were so many French speaking passengers on the ship compared to our previous cruises. This is apparently a new itinerary which began about three months ago. We took a tour to the Floral Park and Sevilla Distillery. I loved the park, could have done without the distillery. The park had beautiful tropical flowers and beautiful hummingbirds.
Antigua - we took a private cab ride around the island that was not "approved" by the ship. We were very particular with who we chose. It was a nice trip. Nelson's Dockyard is the main attraction on this island. There were some amazing yachts docked there.
St. Croix - we just walked around outside the port but due to my recently sprained foot (before the cruise) we did not venture to any beaches. Perhaps next time.
This was our third cruise on the Radiance class ships. The Jewel is by far my favorite of the three I have been on. The Brilliance is going into dry dock soon.
Food - I was very happy to find out that the menu in the dining room was revised three months before we sailed. We have been sailing with RCI for years and although the menu was good, I was tired of it. I was happy with the new menu and enjoyed my favorite escargot which was offered every night. We ate in the Windjammer for breakfast and lunch and it was fine. We did not use room service.
Coffee - well the regular coffee was not so good. I didn't opt to purchase any coffee from the specialty coffee shop.
Room - we had a nice room, but unfortunately poorly located across from service rooms. We have cruised many times before and never really noticed the crew when we were resting in our room, but this cruise was very different. It appeared to be more of a floor management problem and Guest Services worked very hard to try to fix it. We won't book any rooms in the future across from a service room or pantry. Other than this issue the cruise was very good.
Debarkation - there were multiple areas to meet. We had an early flight and were able to exit the ship quickly and catch a cab to the airport.
Wheelchair issues - If you are using a wheelchair and do not have your own be very careful if you can't walk at all to get on and off the ship. I could walk short distances. I did rent a wheelchair to use on board and the crew was great and very helpful. Getting on the ship we had to ask to get a wheelchair and leaving the ship we were told (after it was too late to change) that wheelchairs were not available on the early departures and only from 9AM departures or later. I had to walk with my crutch to the terminal. There needs to be better organization for the disabled passengers. Thursday night, the night before the cruise was over I received a card in my cabin from the disability guest relations officer stating I could let him know if I needed anything during my cruise. It would have been nice to have that card from day one.
We love Royal Caribbean and will continue to cruise with them in the future.