The Elation was a wonderful ship!!! We were really impressed by the size and the Christmas Decorations on the ship. The grand atrium and staircase was great with 2 glass elevators. It seemed that even on this sold out New Years Cruise, you ... Read More
The Elation was a wonderful ship!!! We were really impressed by the size and the Christmas Decorations on the ship. The grand atrium and staircase was great with 2 glass elevators. It seemed that even on this sold out New Years Cruise, you could always find a place, with exception of the hot tubs, which were almost always full of kids, with no parents around (including the adults only hot tub).
Our cabin was in a great location E48. We felt centrally located to almost everything and were very close to the elevators, staircases, dining room (1 floor up) etc. We loved the location. Our room steward was also great and gave us a copy of the Elation book. He kept our sodas that we brought from home on ice as well as keeping an ice bucket ready for us. The room was fine overall, and was very clean.
The food overall was okay. I can't say that there was anything that we LOVED, but our waiter was always there to get us something. The desserts kinda all tasted the same to me, loved the ice cream and peanut butter cookies served at tea time the best. Room service was nice, they even would send us a bowl of pretzels if we asked. We were fine without buying the soda card as we each had a 6 pack so we could have 1 soda a day if we wanted. The water tasted absolutely fine, and there was orange, apple, fruit punch and iced tea available. They did not charge for cappuccino in the dining room.
Progresso was fun. We were one of the first off of the boat, and then rode in this bus (kinda yucky) into town. We then walked just a few blocks to the beach. There were lots of nice shells on the beach to find, and there were also many of those grassy roofs with tables under them. We sat in front of a restaurant and each ordered a soda, and we were able to stay there all day. You could also rent lounge chairs for $7 for the day/person. The water was nice, but silty on the bottom if you went out very far, i would bring water shoes next time (also a lot of shells on the bottom). No snorkeling here, people were doing some basic boogie boarding though. The vendors came up to you frequently, but in general would go if you said no. We did find their prices to be reasonable, and you were able to bargain with them. Some of the vendors were carrying around what looked like were fish tanks filled with "sweets" under saran wrap...we did see a lot of flies and bees flying around under there....We also went to the market where the bus drops you off...the people were very nice, a lot of bead jewelry, t shirts, wood crafts (those pecking chickens crack me up) and hammocks (we bought a hammock chair). The people we spoke to who went to Merida, thought that just relaxing on the beach would have been the way to go, but I guess it depends on what you want to see...we had a great time here.
Cozumel is one of our favorite ports. We took a boat out with Eagle Ray Divers for the day as my hubby and father in law did discover snuba (for the second time) and the rest of us snorkeled. We saw wonderful schools of fish, 2-3 ft long rainbow parrot fish, sting rays, little clumps of coral with really cool colorful fish in them...it was absolutely awesome!!! I would recommend them to anyone. The marina was a short taxi ride from the pier. They will make the trip what you want it to be which is really nice.
Belize was interesting. I think we would have liked it more if we had done a different tour. We took the Sunkissed tour to Goff's Caye. There was a lot of wasted time on this 3-4 hour tour. It seemed very unorganized, and we spent a lot of time docking the boat and getting everyone out through a window in the front of the boat (it was crazy, they had a bucket for a step stool). Fortunately my mother in law and sister in law stayed on the boat, as they would have never climbed through that hole to get out. They spend over 30 minutes giving out snorkel gear once we anchored which was killing me as I wanted to be out in the water. We dropped a few people off at the caye and then went about 200 yards off the caye to snorkel. Once again it took for ever to anchor. They kept calling it a "guided tour" but basically it was everyone try to keep up with the guide as he power swims with a buoy through the basically devastated area of brown coral with a few fishies around. It was truly a joke, we did see a few pretty fish and some purple fan corals, but otherwise there wasn't much. The current was also a little rough, and it took a while to get everyone off the boat so you had to tread water (with no guide in the water yet) until everyone was in. Then we got back on the boat, took another 20 minutes to dock then we got onto the caye for about 30 minutes before we had to go back. The caye was beautiful, but if I had known, I wouldn't do this if it was my only few hours in Belize. Some of the other people we were with on this tour thought it was great, as they had gone with the ship's catamaran snorkel cruise in Cozumel, and basically saw nothing...I felt sorry for them as we saw so much more in Cozumel!!!!
New Years Eve on the ship was really fun. THey put party hats and horns in our room before dinner, and also had a special picture place for a party picture. Dinner was nothing special though. Then there was music at the different lounges, and a big party on the deck by the pool which was really great. There was a lot of dancing and also free champagne. At midnight they blew the horn loud!!! It was cool cause there was another ship nearby which also blew its horn. People were dressed every different way from really sparkly and tuxedoish to just regular dinner attire...it was fun. I would suggest bringing some confetti along to toss around, a lot of people did, and it made it really fun!!!
The entertainment was okay, but nothing really to WOW you. The people who played in the Atruim were the best. Karaoke was available for those who like that, but it was also very over run with teeny boppers whose parents were nowhere to be found. I'm not sure why parents don't keep better track of their kids, but one night the glass elevator was tied up with a kid pretending to be the elevator man, the stairways were almost always the playing field for a game of tag and the hot tubs were always full of kids. I know its their vacation too, and you can give them some freedom on the ship, but we paid for a vacation too.
Disembarking was a snap if you obeyed the rules. We sat at Tiffany's, ate breakfast and played cards until we were called. We were off by 11am.
I would definitely recommend this cruise, and if you have any questions please ask!! Read Less