We just returned yesterday (August 17). Had a really good time. 11 people in our group for mom's birthday. Ate dinner every night at 8:15 p.m. in the Normandie dining room and never did we have a bad meal. In fact, we were all very happy with our food. Great prime ribs, great eggplant, pasta, creme brulee, etc. NOTHING TO COMPLAIN ABOUT. Servers were terrific.
Grand Turk. Get off the boat early and you will get a chair and have shade under a tree. Nice beach, close to ship, but nowhere near as nice as Half Moon Cay. I was surprised that there were not more people trying to get off early. I guess they were tired. By 12:30 we were done and went back on ship. Mom is 85 and we didn't want her waiting on long line in the sun. Good thing no other boat at the dock or there would NOT have been enough chairs. Would have been a HUGE problem.
Half Moon Cay. We did not do a private excursion and spent day on beach. Again we left boat early and were in one of the first tenders. More
Rented a clam shell ($26.00) for shade that was under a tree. Worked fine. Saw cabanas. Not necessary if you get shade under tree but they are nice. This is a beautiful island. Water is absolutely fantastic -- up there with some of the best I have ever seen. Great day. Food fine and lots of it. Returned to ship around 2:30. Delayed departure from Half Moon Cay because someone died scuba diving. Not sure if a stroke or what. He was in 30s with wife and young kids. Pray for him and his family.
Freeport. Walked around port. Some did excursions and had fun. Heard Lucaya hotel/beach was very nice.. Another injury. Kid hurt on banana boat. Somehow his teeth were dislodged and had to be rushed to hospital.
Hit the gym every day. Nice.
Sat in Serenity lounge. Had to get there by 10 a.m. to get chairs. Plus for the Serenity area is no noise/loud music and no kids running around (they told my 14 year old to leave). Minus is yes, there are black specs (soot) that land on you and you get some strange odors. Also, limited breeze at the back of the ship so if ship is not moving and it is sunny, it is really tought to sit there.
Entertainment. Went to shows every night. They were entertaining. Woman singer was very good. Male not as good. If you like these types of shows, you will like these. If not, these productions won't change your view. Also watched some comediens. We liked them a lot.
Overall. Would do it again. Good value. Mom had good time singing, dancing and eating as did everyone else. Only problem: if you try to do everything, like we did, you need a vacation from your cruise! Have fun. Less