We arrived in Ft. Lauderdale and took SAS Transportation to Miami. SAS was great. They were there to pick us up within 5 minutes of us calling.
We stayed at the Epic Hotel for two nights pre-cruise. It was an amazing hotel. We had a great time. The morning of the cruise, I walked to Bayside Park to see the ship. I was ready to board and begin our cruise.
We arrived at the port at about noon and saw the biggest line of people I have ever seen. We waited about a half an hour and were greatful that we weren't still in cold Michigan and it wasn't raining. After about a half an hour, they opened the back doors and we started the boarding process.
Once on board, we took Cruise Critic member's advice and headed to Sorrento's for pizza rather than going to the Windjammer with the masses. The pizza and salad were great and this became my one of my kids' favorite spots.
We went to the sail a way with the Dreamworks characters and then dinner. We were sitted by ourselves, which at first, was a bit disappointing but ended up working out great. Our waiter, Marion and assistant Norris were great. Marion even made sure to bring out grapes for my kids so they would have an appetizer that they would eat. We also enjoyed the opening night show.
We went to the Dreamworks breakfast the first day (thanks to Cruise critic, I knew to book at dinner). We really enjoyed it. They could have moved the characters out faster, we along with a lot of others waited for the last character to come out so we could get pictures and then leave. They should probably do two breakfasts so that they can accommodate more people.
The first two days, I spent by the pool. My 12 year old enjoyed playing basketball and took flowrider lessons the second night. He ended up doing tricks by the end of the cruise. It was well worth the money. We missed the first formal night because of the flowrider, so we ate in Johnny Rockets. The hamburger and chili were good, didn't really like the hot dog. We also ate in Chops and we were pretty disappointed. I asked for roasted potatoes without the proscuitto and was told that they were pre-made, really, in the fine dining restaurant? I can understand in the main dining room, but Chops is supposed to be on the level of a fine dining restaurant. I believe that they could have catered a little bit more. (On Disney, at Palo, the chef said he would do anything we wanted). My steak was good as was the crabcake but I don't think it was any better than the main dining room. We just didn't think it was worth the extra cost.
We went to most of the shows. We liked Ever After. Even though the acrobatics were amazing, none of us cared for the In the Air show. We all fell asleep, in fact. Maybe we were all just too tired. We laughed until we cried with El Gaucho. The ice show was amazing. We also enjoyed a juggler the last night. Gordon, the cruise director, also sang incredibly well. He was a great addition to the shows.
On the negative side, I wish there were more family movies during the day or at least earlier in the evening. We went to Grease but it started at 10:30 so only lasted an hour. We also went to one of the 3-D movies, but it was horrible so we left before the end. (But that isn't Royal Caribbean's fault).
The kids' club (Voyager) for my 9 year old for the most part was good. He loved the late nights there including trash the room and the pizza/movie night. He also loved the cupcake cupboard. We even made a hamburger and fries the last day. That was a lot of fun.