This was my first ever cruise, so I have nothing to compare to except my own expectations.
Embarkation: This went quite quickly and easy. Although once onboard it was quite overwhelming, but we found the lido deck and enjoyed some lunch until our room was available
The Room: We had an inside cabin, no window, no balcony. I felt it was quite spacious and roomy, plus lots of storage space. Our room was always very clean and the attendants were great bringing us ice when ours would melt. Our first morning aboard we accidentally slept in until 11 a.m., which we blamed on having no outdoor light whatsoever. I felt the beds were quite comfortable, never had a problem falling asleep.
The Ship: The ship was exactly as described in all the reviews I'd read. I was not offended by any of it, did have a previous cruiser comment to me that he thought the darkness kept people from loosening up early on. Navigating the ship was fairly easy after about day 3. I felt all the More
staff was wonderful, rarely did anyone pass by without a smile.
Dining: I did feel navigating the lido deck was a bit difficult with all the different food stations. I'd see something on someones plate yet never be able to find it. The food was fine, nothing over the top but pretty much what you would expect from anyplace that is serving that many people. I personally loved the pizza station! The pizza was always fresh, my only complaint would be one evening I was hungry for some later in the evening and it was closed, which was confusing since it was to be open 24 hours. We had a specific dining time and it was wonderful. The food was good with lots of choices. It was nice to be a bit adventurous if you chose (I didn't). The worst thing I had in the dining room was the pumpkin pie, it was like no pie I had ever had. Our waitress I believe Beatrice, was absolutely wonderful, she remembered our names after day one and was always stopping by to see if we needed anything.
Excursions: Being a first timer we were clueless and had heard you could rent a car in Cape Canaveral which we had intended to do but couldn't see really anything when leaving boat, so we asked people at the port that were standing around and they said we could take a cab to airboat ride. The lady was very accommodating and the signs were up saying $6 per person to beach so we didn't think to much of it and decided to go ahead. BEWARE the cab ride ended up costing us almost $150.00 round trip for about a 20 min ride to and fro and the cab drives jokes about being in the middle of nowhere and psychos were NOT funny. I will say the airboat ride at Midway was fabulous!
Nassau we did the Atlantis tour with beach pass, would I do it again, no. We were sent outside to wait but noone told us where to go after that, we ended up following the others with the same arm band. Our bus driver to Atlantis was great and went over some of the history with us. I agree with another review in that you are in a crowd of a ton of people and the guide is going over where you can and can't go and pointing out different things and unless you are right beside him, you will have no clue what he is saying. the aquariums were nice, the beach area was very crowded. The places you were allowed to use your food voucher at were had very long lines and you had a very limited choice on what you could get.
Freeport we just went to the straw market where all the shops pretty much had the same things.
Entertainment: The pools were great on port days if you arrived back on board early because you could actually find a chair and room in the pool. We went to two of the dancer shows. The first one was great the second one turned us off from going to anymore. Hit the comedy club which was good but crowded. Some of the daytime going ons were hard to locate and even harder to get a view of they would be so crowded. The piano bar was the best!! The bartender there I believe Prem... and Roger were great!! Had so much fun there! Other than that I felt the entertainment was lacking. The nightclub with the exception of an hour maybe a night played only hiphop that seemed to appeal only to those in the 18-25 bracket. There seemed to be no nightlife if you weren't into hiphop or the casino because everything else shut down by 12:30.
Disembarkation: I wasn't looking forward to this part but it was actually very painless and orderly.
Would definitely go another cruise and even on the pride (esp. since I now know my way around) I had a great time overall and thank the crew for that! Less