Rhapsody of the Seas Cruise Review by Sandhiller: The trip of a life time!
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The trip of a life time!
We flew into Seattle several days before the cruise and toured the WA and OR coastline - it was fantastic! On the morning of the cruise we returned our rental car to the airport and took Shuttle Express to the pier. They did a good job, we left at 10:45AM (well before our planned time as we were ready to leave) with very little waiting.
Embarkation went very smoothly for us and by 1:00 we were through security and on the ship - I would recommend coming fairly early to the pier as the lines were longer later. Our room was cozy, clean, more than enough storage, well arranged, and very quiet. The bed was very comfortable, esp. considering it was 2 twins made into a queen. My husband did retrieve our large luggage from the elevator area, which was no problem - the staff has a huge amount of luggage to sort through in a short time. Our stateroom attendant, Lester, was fantastic and any issues we had were resolved quickly. The sea was quite calm during our time at sea - 1 to 2 meter More seas and we had glorious weather, the sun shone every day! I will say even with calm seas there is still gentle movement of the ship, and if one is concerned about seasickness, we would recommend Bonine. It is OTC, inexpensive, with no side effects, and is effective.
Food was quite good. The dining room staff was excellent(Gerry, Leonardo, and Liang)! We did My Time Dining - usually made a reservation earlier in the day, but could plan around our activities that way with no waiting. Mariska did a fantastic job of organizing it all - very accommodating. Hand sanitizers were required before dining and cleanliness seemed stressed (ie. not shaking hands, etc.). The Windjammer food was good, but quite crowded at times, hard to get a table. The only vibrations we felt were in the dining room when we were at sea, and wouldn't of thought anything about it if others hadn't mentioned it - no problem for us.
The shows were excellent, very tasteful, great productions, varied. Also, the lectures on Alaska history, wildlife, etc. were great. Always something to do, though we did talk to some people who missed the late night partying on this ship - not a problem for us. We were a bit disappointed as the hot tubs were closed earlier than we would of liked. We had a couples hot stone massage in the spa, a gift from our kids, and it was wonderful, overlooking the sea. We booked our shore excursions with Royal Caribbean.
Did the Tram in Juneau, as well as the Mendenhall Glacier. Tram gives fantastic view of the harbor, and the time at the glacier is adequate, very neat. Would of liked more time in Juneau, as our shopping time was rushed. In Skagway we did the White Pass RR and we would recommend that, worth the $, fantastic views, learned history of the area. In fact with all our tours the guides gave great comments of the history, etc. Really enjoyed Skagway! In Victoria we walked to the downtown (a nice walk and locals very friendly) and took the Butchart Gardens tour - fantastic, but 1 1/2 hours not long enough to see it well for a gardener like myself. The Sawyer Glacier is spectacular, we didn't spot the seal pups as some did, but did see a number of whales when we were at sea, and mountain goats on the train ride. We would suggest bringing your own maps of the towns, from the web. The Alaskan scenery is unmatched, gorgeous at every turn! We have never been so pampered in our lives, ate like kings.
Almost everything seemed very well organized and managed to us. The staff from the captain on down seemed very friendly, accessible, and helpful. Disembarkation went very well. We did the valet service as we had an early flight and it was wonderful - never saw our checked bags until we reached our destination (Denver), got special express security(a small separate area - fast!) - a pilot program. We were at the airport and our gate by 10AM! Less
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Cabin review: Rhapsody of the Seas Large Oceanview Stateroom Deck 2 2600
Quiet, well maintained, less ship movement felt in this area