My boyfriend and I just came off a 5 night Bermuda cruise on Explorer of the Seas. Boy it was a cruise of a lifetime! Usually we book with Carnival or Norwegian...this was our first with Royal Caribbean.
Embarkation was a breeze--the line seemed long, but it actually went pretty fast and smoothly. I recommend to check in online before going to the pier...it saves a lot of the paperwork you have to fill out in the terminal.
First of all the ship is beautiful! The Royal Promenade is gorgeous and very spacious! The first night they do an Island Frenzy parade on the Promenade which is entertaining...filled with tiki men, exotic girls and stilt walkers! The public rooms are really nicely designed and always have entertainment going on...the schooner bar has a piano singer, the pub has a guitar player singing all the requests given by the guest and in the Cosmopolitan lounge, there's a jazz quartet. A little music for everyone. The Dining room feels like you're on the Titanic...so elegant and nicely laid out! A lot of people are worried about the crowds around the ship, but I didn't notice it that much except during dining times...everyone always rushing towards the food! haha!
The food on the ship is great! Compared to Norwegian and Carnival, Royal Caribbean beats them hands down in this category. The dining room food was nicely presented and tasted great. Service was top notched and our waiters were always filling the water glasses and passing out bread. The Windjammer buffet was also quite nice-- a lot of variety. I especially enjoyed Jade (the Asian section of the buffet).
Entertainment again, Royal Caribbean beats others in this category. At first I was like no one could beat Carnival, they're the "fun ships". I was wrong! The 70's Street Party on the Promenade is top notch! The cruise staff on the ship make this theme night into a mardi gras type of atmosphere and even do the village people skit on the bridge! Free prizes are also thrown into the crowd. 80's video party in Studio B was also entertaining. THE QUEST is a MUST do!! So much fun. I'm not going to go into details, but it is a lot of fun and you can't believe the things people will do in front of strangers! The Ice show was fantastic! I was in shock that there was an ice rink on a cruise ship! It is a must see. The production show Vibeology was awesome...takes you through the music of the 60's to present. The singers and dancers were great.
Bermuda was gorgeous! Horseshoe Bay is simply breath taking...blue waters, pink sand, what else can you ask for?! During the overnight, there's a Dockyard festival at night which is nice....there are vendors, food stands and live entertainment outside of the ship. It is beautiful to see the ship all lit up in the background at night!
Overall, this cruise has exceeded my expectations greatly! I think Royal Caribbean has earned my business. They beat out Carnival and Norwegian in all categories! I'm looking forward to cruising with them again in the future! Good job RCL!