We left Belgium a day before the sailing, because with the stopover in Newark coming from Europe we would never get there in time for the sailing at 5 PM. After some stories on cruise critic I was even a bit worried that we wouldn't make it in time just leaving Europe the day before (snowstorms....) But everything went just fine.
Boarding was so easy, just a few other people around and within minutes we were on board. My husband loved it, sitting in a comfortable chair sipping some bubbly just minutes after arriving at the dock. We loved the size of the ship, my husband found it a cosy ship. He already told me he wants to travel on smaller ships all the time now. Being a smaller ship you can feel the movements of the ship much better, but we don't mind because we never get seasick. Even in bed I like it when the ship goes up and down, so we usually get a cabin a the front of the ship (bow??).
We also liked the food on board, all day long there is always something nice to eat or drink, starting with the smoothie in the morning and the coffee from the machine (lavazza coffee some member of staff told us)which for us was much better than the coffee that they would serve out of the coffee cans.
Most of the people on board were not very young anymore, but we met very nice people on board and always had nice company at dinner because we don't mind sharing a table. We also had a meet and greet for cruise critic members which was nice, it is always fun to meet the people you have talked to on the boards.
We had several nice excursions, but no ship excursions. Sometimes we just went for a hike on the islands we visited. Our cabin attendants were always very helpful and the room was usually cleaned when we got back from breakfast. We liked most of the service on board, staff was always very friendly and trying to help. We would definitely sail again with azamara if the time and itinerary are right. We don't need big shows at night and like a laid back cruise, with excursions and some reading in a comfortable chair and some nice food and that is what we got on board the Azamara Journey.