My sister suggested that we take a cruise in March 2013 while her husband was on a trip with his church. I love cruising, and thought this was a great idea. This was my 10th cruise, but the first time I have ever been on a cruise without my husband (he was happy for me to go on a trip with my sister). After looking at the ports we would visit, we decided to book an inside cabin since we would not be spending much time in it anyway. We opted for the premium liquor package, and booked the Atlantis waterpark in advance.
Check in was a breeze, maybe 15 minutes at most. Our room wasn't ready so we went to the Lido deck, ate lunch and sat by the pool. Being spring break time in Florida, there were lots of young people. This brought a surprising energy to the ship. Everyone was well behaved during the entire cruise.
Here are the highlights (and maybe some tips) of our cruise:
The liquor package- well worth it. My sister and I are not big drinkers, but we liked the frozen drinks, and the freedom to try new kinds of drinks. If you don't like it, just order something else. If your drink waters down or spills , no problem. It also includes soft drinks.
The music by the pool- great and fun, you really feel like you are on vacation.
The deck party was fun fun fun.
The Atlantis waterpark- pricy but great fun, especially the lazy river.
The private island Coco Cay- As soon as we got on board the ship in Miami, I went to the excursion desk and put my name on a list to reserve a private cabana. If you are in a suite I think you can do this when you book the cruise. Later that night I found out we were able to get one. The cabana village is in a quiet area. The view of the ocean was great. My sister and I relaxed and read most of the day. The special lunch buffet was good.
Key West was good for shopping for cheap gifts. There is a store that everything was $5- great for t shirts.
Now for everything else-
The cabin was small, but we knew that when we booked the cruise. It was clean and served it's purpose.
The food- we never ate in the dining room (my sister didn't want to bring any dress clothes) so it was lido deck food every meal. The food was as expected- okay.
We never went to the shows.
The only disappointment was the water both in the pools and the ocean was too cold. No way you could go swimming.
In closing I really liked this cruise. It is an old ship, but you can still have fun and you can't beat the price. I kept thinking my husband would like this cruise and so last week I booked us to go on it in September (as a surprise birthday gift).