Just off The Explorer out of Bayonne to Bermuda. It was our first cruise so to compare it to other ships or companies would not make sense.
Myself, wife, who has motion sickness, 5yr old, 2yr old, and my parents in their mid 70's.
ARRIVING-Pretty much a breeze. Arrived at 11:30, were eating lunch by 12:30.
DEPARTING-Pretty much the same-out of the room by 8am, breakfast to 9, sat around the ice rink to 10, our color was than called and we were in the car by 10:30.
FOOD-Overall, I would give it a 6 out of 10 stars. The worse being the main dining room-I could not get a piece of good meat over the entire 5 days. Nice kids menu, attentive service, ok menu. Windjammer buffet had a nice selection, some things better than others-burgers cold and hard, but nice selection of different stir fry rices and asian dishes.
DRINKS- Was pleasantly surprised at the prices. 3.95 for a Corona or Heininken-I pay more at home 5 bucks for a Manhattan 8 for a name brand Martini-5.95 for the drink of the day and you keep the glass--add 15 percent for automatic tip--overall though I did not break the bank like I though I would.
CABIN- What can you say - not the ideal place for a family of four. Small and we had a balcony. The room door, bathroom door, and closet door all opened out on to each other, sofa bed was hard as a rock. Balcony divider can or will not be taken down --we tried, bathroom was not bad-shower was larger than I expected and always had hot water.
ENTERTAINMENT-Can't help out with this much as were in bed early with the kids. The Main shows were fair-comedian and magician were lame as far as I were concerned-my kids loved the juggler-I missed it and please will somebody please put a stop to the entertainers that hang from ropes and spin around and about like they are some kind of mid-life bird. Geez. We all loved the Planet Ice Show at the skating rink.
SERVICE-was great from start to finish-everyone and I mean everyone were pleasant and seemed just plain happy. At times, some of the wait staff were a little too taken with our 2 year year old daughter and put us in some awkward positions, but they were "trying" to be nice so we let it go.
SHIP--Is huge 14 floors--explore it its fun--we played a lot of miniature golf, pingpong, shuffleboard, and games in the arcade. My son did not want to participate in the childrens program-I think he saw too many girls the day we tried to sign him up. I was disappointed with the outdoor play area--its all underneath the deck above--the entire thing is in the shade, water is cold there is only one small wading area a small pool and a larger slide that was only open 2 hours a day-- ELEVATORS--I only have three words on this subject TAKE THE STAIRS--what a nightmare!!
OTHER OBSERVATIONS--You won't starve, coffee was surprisingly good all over, loved the room service feature, the ship despite her size will be rocking and rolling in moderate seas which we had the last night and my wife who was wearing a patch got very ill.