We drove down to Miami and stayed at Embassy Suites in Boca Raton because we were visiting family and the price was right. Great hotel for the price. It is about an hour away from Miami.
We got to the port at about 10:30AM where they took our luggage and my husband parked the car. We were waiting on line and they started letting people in at about 11AM. Once they started it was very quick to get on board.
We went to the Windjammer for lunch. The food was good and it was busy but very organized. The crew is constantly cleaning off tables and occasionally they would ask if you would like them to get you a drink.
My son ordered the soda card, for 17 years old and younger it is $4/day plus tax and gratuity. It was worth the money for him since he drinks a lot of soda. I just ordered a can when I wanted for about $2.
We brought a bag with our bathing suits and at 1PM when our rooms were ready we changed and went to the pool area. The pool is very large for a cruise and I liked that there were lounge chairs in a shaded area.
We took 2 cabins on deck 9, superior oceanview. We were spoiled by balcony staterooms from previous cruises but I didn't really miss it. The room is small, but it was functional and bigger than the other oceanview rooms. We met our cabin steward and she was very nice and the service was very good. We had the muster drill and it went by pretty quickly.
Dinner was at 6PM. We had a table for 4. The service was excellent.
For the most part the food was good, but occasionally you would order something and it was just OK. I find that to be the case on past cruises as well. My husband commented that there were more choices on past Carnival cruises and that other than room service there were times when food was not available. The third night was the best, Italian food. I liked the choices and the food was very good. My family ordered chicken marsala and I ordered shrimp scampi. We all had the warm chocolate cake with fudge in the middle. Very good. The shows were good.
Nassau - We went to the British Colonial Hilton which is walking distance from the dock. We paid $20 each and the kids were $10 each. Beautiful hotel. They give you towels, as many as you want, and they have a pool and beach. The sand was soft and the water was calm and beautiful. We had lunch at Johnny Rockets. $3.95 cover charge. The food was great. The staff sing and dance. It was well worth the money.
Coco Cay - We found an area where there were shade and hammocks. My son went on the water slide for $20. We decided not to eat the barbecue and went back to the ship for lunch.
Key West - We went on a trolley tour and got off at the southernmost point of the US. We went to the Blonde Giraffe for frozen chocolate key lime pie on a stick. It was very hot and humid. I didn't enjoy Key West as much as I thought I would.
At night, we walked around on deck 7. It is quiet. We went to the lounge on deck 14 which was quiet and nice. They have a smoking and non-smoking section.
Getting off the ship was very quick. We waited for our color to be called, and we just walked off. No lines. Once we found our luggage, a porter took it to our car.
Overall, this was a great cruise. The service was terrific on this ship. If it was a longer cruise with sea days, I would have liked a larger ship with more things to do on board. For a 4 night cruise, there were plenty of activities to keep you busy. My teenage kids said they enjoyed Royal Caribbean more than the previous Carnival cruises we went on. My son enjoyed the teen lounge.