This was my very first cruise and I have nothing to compare it to. I was traveling with 3 other single women who had all cruised several times before. I wanted to be able to come home and say "OMG, I had an amazing vacation". Instead, it turned out to be somewhat disappointing.
So, without further delay, here is my experience.
I boarded the ship without a hitch. Everything went smoothly. After we boarded, we were directed to one of the main dining rooms where lunch was served. It was a delicious meal. Afterwards, we went to our room to check it out and wait for our luggage to be delivered. The room was very nice, probably nicer than I expected. AC, TV, and balcony.
In and out of every restaurant, on and off the ship at every port, and outside of every bathroom, there was hand sanitizer. It was mandatory that you wash your hands. I have no problem with that. None at all. However, one day when I was at the front desk, an elderly man (at least 80) went up to the desk and told the receptionist that his wife cut her leg and was bleeding and needed assistance. His wife was using a walker. The receptionist instructed him to take his wife to the elevator and go to the 4th floor to see the doctor (while she dripped blood in the main lobby and possibly on the carpeting) instead of saying, "stay right where you are and I will get you some help". I was appalled. They were vigilant about washing hands but it was ok to drip blood?
The chocolate buffet had some decent things to eat, however, I picked up what I thought (and everyone else thought) was a cream puff, but it was a dinner roll covered in chocolate instead. A great disappointment.
Most of the nights I ate in the specialty restaurants which was pretty good. I especially enjoyed Tepanyake and LeBistro. The service was excellent and the food was decent. I did not care for the food in the main dining rooms or the all you can eat buffet. It was mediocre.
You could find iced tea, but not iced coffee. That was a problem. And when you found it, there were no glasses or cups big enough to accommodate it. I did not like the fact that people were eating food at the pool deck, and there were no receptacles to put the dirty plates or cups in. The passengers were putting the plates either on the floor or on other chase lounges. I found the pool deck to be filthy with pieces of food (lettuce, french fries, hamburger buns, beer bottles, plates and cups) rolling back and forth while no one picked it up.
I signed up for 2 excursions. The dolphin encounter was great. We had signed up and paid for snorkeling in Belize, but my friend was not feeling well that day and we tried to cancel. She was told she needed to pay the doctor to get a doctors note. We were charged for the excursion and they would not remove it from our bill. Lesson learned, when I go on another cruise, I will take my chances and book the excursion the day of.
I didn't think that there were enough fun activities on board that didn't require drinking or money. What ever happened to line dancing or simon says? Why would you have a singles evening the last day of the cruise instead of the first? I don't get it.
The shows on board were pretty good. We loved the comedian, Tim. He was terrific. The show the last day was very good, but there was standing room only while other passengers saved 10 seats and the handicapped people had to stand, and still couldn't see. I was very disappointed that there were not enough crew members/staff assisting these people.