We chose this cruise as a sort of last family vacation before our oldest daughter heads off to college. We live very close to Port Canaveral, but chose the Liberty out of Fort Lauderdale because we just weren't able to get away for a whole week and just loved the four day option on such a nice ship. Usually, you can only find shorter sailings on the oldest ships.
I booked my husband and myself in a Junior Suite, and my three teenage daughters were booked in a category E1 next door. We just loved our room, and it most definitely spoiled us for future cruises. We had only sailed in the inside cabins before! The aft balcony was very nice and spacious with two chairs, two lounge chairs, and a small table. We really enjoyed the lounge chairs! I was really concerned about the view of the superstructure after reading so many reviews, but we didn't find it to be a problem at all and really enjoyed our view. It was also really nice that we didn't have hardly any wind while sitting out there. Our room steward Jose' was really great, and was able to take our daughters continuously messy room in stride! It looked like a beauty products bomb had gone off in there!!
The ship itself is absolutely beautiful. There are so many activities to choose from, that we didn't get the chance to try everything in four short days. We did do the mini golf, and my husband did the flow rider which was a hoot to watch! My girls hung out at the teen lounge from time to time and met friends to walk around the ship with. They spent time at the pool and hot tub as well. My oldest daughter did the cupcake decorating class, but didn't feel it was worth the money as the class only lasted about 15 minutes and everything was more or less pre-assembled to put together quickly. She likes to be a little more creative. The cupcake was very tasty, though! We attended all the shows and thought they were very good. I would not recommend the Saturday Night Fever show for younger children, however.
We visited one port, which was Cozumel. We didn't have any excursions planned as we were unsure what the weather was going to be like. The weather in Florida had been beautiful right up until the time of our sailing...then a cold front came thru and the temperature dropped 20 degrees! It was in the low 50's when we set sail. Luckily, it warmed up by the second day and when we got to Cozumel it was in the low 70's. We decided it was too cool for a beach day for us and opted to take a tour around the island instead. We were able to take a taxi tour of the island for $25pp and it lasted about 2 1/2hr. It was basically the same island tour offered on the ship. We first stopped to have a look at Paradise beach which was really nice. From there, we went on a small tequilla making tour which was really fun. But, be prepared...the purpose of the tour is to sell tequilla...and it is really EXPENSIVE tequilla! We quickly moved on from there to El Cidral, which basically consists of a very old Catholic church and one small mayan ruin. Everyone is interested in selling you something outside. From there, we went to the other side of the island to El-Mirador where there are large rock formations on the beach. The coastline on this side of the island is the only thing to see in my opinion. The water was the most magnificent shades of blue and turqoise that I have ever seen. We made a couple more short stops and then got dropped off downtown to have lunch. We dined at Poncho's backyard, which is located in the Los Cincos Soles shop. We had an excellent table right in front of the marimba players and really enjoyed our meal and the entertainment. I really enjoyed our visit to Cozumel, but it's not a place I'd probably return to.
I think we ended up trying every dining venue on the ship. We dined in the Windjammer or MDR for breakfast each day. For me, breakfast was probably my least favorite meal of the three, but the french toast wasn't that bad. It would have been nice to have bagels and cream cheese available. For lunch we mostly did the windjammer, but my girls did go to Johnny Rockets and enjoyed that. My husband also enjoyed getting pizza at Sorrento's as well...Not the best pizza, but he liked it!! We dined two of the Nights in the MDR and enjoyed both meals there. One night we had beef fillet and the other night we had chicken marsala. We also, dined one night at Portofino's and one night at Chops grille. I was really excited to try the specialty restaurants after reading many good reviews, but I have to say I was really let down with both of them. Neither of them I felt were worth anywhere near the up charge levied. At Chops grille, I ordered the crab and shrimp cake and received what could best be described as a hushpuppy in the shape of a crab cake. The shrimp coctail was fine, but I didn't care for the cocktail sauce much. We all ordered the fillets, and although they were a good size and tender, I have probably had a better tasting one at my local Outback steakhouse. As for the sides, we ordered the onion rings, mashed potatoes, and "sauteed broccolini". The onion rings were the same ore-ida ones I buy in the freezer section at Publix, not that their bad mind you...just not something I would pay $30 more for. The mashed potatoes were nothing special and the "sauteed broccolini" was cooked frozen broccoli spears. The only thing we had that was really good was the mud pie for dessert. Portofino's was a tiny bit better, but again we decided definitely not worth the up charge. If you really wanted to try the fillet from Chops I would recommend ordering it off the MDR menu for $14.95. They also had a surf and turf for $34.95 which was a fillet and lobster. I went to the cafe promenade every morning for coffee. They brew Seattles best coffee, and offer to-go cups with lids. As I really like flavored creamers I brought my own from home...but it would sure be nice if they offered them.
All in all, I think we had a great cruise and really enjoyed the Liberty of the Seas. I would definitely recommend a trip on this ship, especially with the option of the shorter sailings...as the prices are really reasonable compared to weekly sailings, especially when sailing with a family.