My husband and I are self employed so we don't get holidays often or regularly, so when we get a chance we jump on a cruise ship - from now on, that jumping will be onto a Royal Caribbean ship. This was our ninth cruise over four cruise lines and this was far and away the best cruising experience we have ever had!
From the minute we set foot on the OPT in Sydney for the most hassle free embarkation I've ever experienced, to the sad moment eleven days later when we had to disembark The Rhapsody Of The Seas for the final time, this was a holiday to remember!
I'm going to try and cover the more important aspects of the ship to assist readers to make decisions:
Superb! Plenty of it, all high calibre and a range to please all ages. From morning through till the late, late evening there are shows, movies, games, music and so much more going on - so much so that it became a problem trying to decide what to miss! Don't miss any of The Centrum shows - fantastic!
Edelweiss Dining Room - A great range of food, ample choices and always delightful. The wait staff are magnificent and bend over backward to please. The men at our table took to ordering multiple courses and this was always happily catered for. Try it for breakfast and lunch too.
The Windjammer Buffet - Typical buffet, a bit hit and miss but the range is good and the service great.
Specialty Dining - We tried Giovanni's Table and Chops Grille and both were superb and worth the cover charge.
The Park Café - Great for a snack or morning/afternoon tea. Not a huge range but everything was very fresh and very tasty. Great location too being situated in our favourite spot on the ship - The Solarium indoor pool.
Small but adequate with plenty of storage and room under the bed to stow the suitcases. The television is well placed and easy to watch in bed, but the programming is just dreadful - lucky there's so much to do out of the cabin because you'd die of boredom if all you had to rely on for entertainment was the TV! The cabin stewards are beautiful, all smiles and nothing is ever a problem and the towel animals that welcomed us home every second night after an evening out were lovely. The bathroom is definitely a tight squeeze but the hand shower works great and is brilliant for the limited space. There are no shower caps or moisturiser provided and the shampoo is pretty bad so bring all your own of these. The cabin power points are American pin so bring an adaptor, you can buy them on board but they are over-priced. There are no passenger laundries so either pack enough to cover you or be prepared to hand wash in the cabin. After about day four, there is an offer of a bag of washing done for $30 - don't do it!!! We didn't use the service but a couple at our dining table did and their clothes came back too crushed to wear and the whites discoloured.
As this was our ninth cruise, all in the Pacific region, the ports are very low on our list of interesting things, so we didn't get off in a few of them and this is something that this cruise did better than any other cruise I've been on. On most other cruises, when in port there is only a bare minimum of activities going on, not the case with Rhapsody Of The Seas, there is still heaps to do. When we did get off, the disembarkation process was the best system I've experienced with a minimum of queuing and waiting. The tender process in particular was very, very good.
In summary, I couldn't recommend Rhapsody Of The Seas high enough and taking all things into account would rate it a 9 1/2 out of 10.