My wife and I did our first Caribbean cruise last week and it was quite enjoyable. We went to Jamaica, the Cayman Islands, and Cozumel, Mexico. We have done 15 cruises altogether, but they've all been in Europe with the exception of 3 to Alaska. I'm not a big fan of hot, humid weather (we live in the desert), but my wife wanted to go on this cruise so I went along. I actually had a very good time.
The check-in process was quick and easy - as always. The ship was nice just having come from a refurbishment two weeks prior. They put in new carpet and new furniture in some of the lounges and dining rooms and new TVs in the staterooms. Someone said they also added some more cabins and we can believe it because the dining room is now rather cramped compared to our previous sailing on this ship because all they did was add more tables to the existing space. The diining room service, as with all the service on the ship, was still excellent however.
We didn't sign up for any shore excursions prior to boarding as we usually do because looking on-line we didn't see anything that grabbed our attention, but once on board we found a brochure from the Shore Excursions Office in our stateroom that seemed to offer more than what we saw on-line. We ended up signing up for a tour in each of our three stops.
We did the Falmouth, Jamaica walking tour with Falmouth Hertage Walks, Ltd and our tour guide Crystal (a college student). She was an excellent tour guide. She's very knowledegable, friendly, and personable. The tour was at a very reasonable pace given the heat and humidity and Crystal and her assistant Grace both had plenty of bottled water for us provided free of charge. If you like seeing what life is like in a place and hearing about the historical aspects of it, then this is a good tour. It was about two hours long.
George Town in Grand Cayman was a pleasant surprise. It was quite modern with nice roads, homes, and shops. We took the 1-hour trolley tour which was very informative and a pleasant ride down the coast seeing how some of the locals live. Some people took a city bus tour that they found on the pier and said that was good also. They saw things we didn't and vice versa.
In Cozumel we took the guided island bus tour that included a 1-hour tour of some Mayan ruins dating back to 3100 BC. We had never been that interested in the Mayan culture, etc, but we found this to be extremely interesting. Of course our guide from the bus was of Mayan descent and knew what he was talking about and made it fun and informative. It was supposed to be a 3-hour tour but came out closer to 4. Actually, I think the 1-hour Mayan tour was more like an hour and a half or so, but nobody cared. It was too good. But bring bottled water because it is hot!
The cruise was uneventful until Sunday morning when we were supposed to dock in Galveston at 7:00 a.m. We actually got into port at 12:30 p.m. because the port had been closed due to heavy fog. We sat 12 miles out in the Gulf for over 4 hours until the port was opened. It certainly caused a lot of frustration for many people who had to try and rebook airline flights. Some had to pay heavy penalties. For us who were driving we did not make it the 600 miles through Texas we had hoped to. Of course, none of this was Royal Caribbean's fault and we never heard anyone say it was.
So, now having done this one cruise in the Caribbean and enjoying it we may do another one sometime but going to different locations.