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12 Night Southern Caribbean Cruise from Baltimore

12 Night Southern Caribbean Cruise from Baltimore

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Grandeur of the Seas
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Itinerary

  • Day 1
    Baltimore
  • Day 2
    Cruising
  • Day 3
    Cruising
  • Day 4
    Cruising
  • Day 5
    St. Thomas
  • Day 6
    St. Maarten
  • Day 7
    St. Lucia
  • Day 8
    Barbados
  • Day 9
    St. Kitts
  • Day 10
    Cruising
  • Day 11
    Cruising
  • Day 12
    Cruising
  • Day 13
    Baltimore

Grandeur of the Seas

Grandeur of the Seas - Royal Caribbean International

Pros

Smaller size, veteran crew and repeat clientele give the ship a homey feel

Cons

Cabins feel old; ship lacks line's newest bells and whistles

Bottom Line

Affordable ship in Baltimore draws families, seniors and everyone in between


Cruise Reviews

2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
My family and I decided to give RCI a try this summer. We have been on 20 Carnival cruises and 2 Princess cruises since 2001. We picked this cruise strictly on the itinerary. My teenagers were doing a DC trip with their school so we met ... Read More
My family and I decided to give RCI a try this summer. We have been on 20 Carnival cruises and 2 Princess cruises since 2001. We picked this cruise strictly on the itinerary. My teenagers were doing a DC trip with their school so we met them at the end and then came on this cruise. Coming Jon the ship we had high hopes for a great cruise. We had purchased the Key which was quite expensive for a family of 4. The only amenity we even used was the internet. RCI claims you can stream with it and you can if you sit in the Internet cafe. On your personal device in your room - nope, could hardly even play a game without your connection dropping constantly. The internet is not good at all. With the key and with a suite, you get to have reserved seating for shows. On some of the ships, this may be a benefit but on this ship - the shows were hardly attended. The broadway show was awful. I admit that I am picky about shows because I am a huge broadway fan and have attended many shows in NYC and in London but this was the worst show I’ve ever seen on a cruise ship. The All Access show was better until they got to the Madonna part and then it was a train wreck. The first comedian was great - my favorite show by far. He was good in the Welcome Aboard show and not too terribly raunchy in the adult show which was a pleasant surprise. Sometimes on Carnival, they can be just disgusting. The hypnotist show was ok and the juggler was ok. The rest, meh, Rey disappointing. The ship just doesn’t have much to do or to choose from to do. There were a couple of trivia’s per day but that was about it. The only cleaver things they had was the egg drop and the Royal Fair. Food - if you love buffet food, this is the ship for you. I however, do not. If you don’t eat on a buffet there really isn’t any other choices. They do offer lunch in the dining room on sea days but on port days - that’s it. The buffet is not appealing, food has been sitting for a long time, the hamburger buns are hard as a rock and the patties are burned to a crisp. The main dining room was good, the servers were great but there aren’t too many choices every night, just a couple. They push the specialty dining almost to the point of irritation. They even push you to pay for a specialty add on meal every night when you are about to order in the dining room. They must get a bonus or something if they can upsell you. In closing, we thought we would try a small ship to see if it was worth it to brave 6,000 people and on a ship and the family verdict is - No Way! We will stick with Carnival and enjoy the shows, the activities and the variety of food offered every single day. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
Background information: My husband and I are in our 80s, and I use a small mobility scooter to help me get around. This was a cruise to celebrate our 60th wedding anniversary with our four children. This was Bob's 19th cruise and ... Read More
Background information: My husband and I are in our 80s, and I use a small mobility scooter to help me get around. This was a cruise to celebrate our 60th wedding anniversary with our four children. This was Bob's 19th cruise and my 30th cruise overall. It was his fifth and my sixth cruise on Royal Caribbean. We booked this cruise everyone could get off work on those dates and because it went out of Baltimore to Bermuda, and we always love to go to Bermuda. None of our children had seen much of Bermuda, so it was pretty new to them, and two of them had never been on a cruise before. Embarkation - One daughter came a day early and stayed an inner harbor hotel. She Ubered to the port. One daughter was driven by her husband. The third daughter's family flew in and stayed in a hotel near the airport. Our son drove up from SC and stayed in the same hotel. He took them all to the ship. Bob and I drove up from southern Maryland and arrived at the cruise terminal about 11. Check in was pretty quick. But we could not get into the room until 1:00 and the dining room was not open which meant everyone had to eat lunch in the Windjammer with all their luggage. This was NOT a good experience. I was supposed to have on-board credit, and it was never added to my account I thought the muster drill was kind of sketchy. They held it out on the deck (which meant that only about one in eight people could see because most people were behind another person). It was outside even for the people in wheelchairs, walkers and scooters. Unlike some ships who do the muster drills for the mobility challenged inside. Some people have a problem standing for that period of time. Ship: We have sailed on this ship before and it is a nice smaller ship, although it is quite noisy. There is always loud music in the atrium. One of the girls did the climbing wall and that was fun. There was a group on board and some of their meetings would close the Solarium or other venues. Two of the elevators were out of service for the entire cruise. The internet was the worst I have ever had on a ship. I could not post any photos because it was too slow. I could not even play a game of solitaire without having to turn the modem back on and log on again. We wanted to play dominoes and could not find a table anywhere that was big enough. Activities: There were scavenger hunts. We did trivia and had a good time with that. They had Harry Potter Trivia, Friends Trivia, and Pub Trivia in addition to regular general trivia. There was also Pictionary. Some of the group did Karaoke, and that was fun. My son-in-law tried to play Bingo, but he missed marking one of the numbers and then when he marked it and had Bingo, they said it didn't count because he didn't have the last number called. The Family Feud game was very poorly done. We didn't go to any shows and those of us that did weren't very impressed. Service was good. Our children commented that the bar service was particularly good (they had the drinks package) Our cabin steward did a good job and kept the cabin clean. We had a group photo that were taken on the first night. I decided that one of the group was good and we should get one for everyone. Everyone was good except one daughter who had her eyes closed in one of them. So I ordered four of the good one and one of the one with her eyes closed. They put that we should come and get the photos at 8 the next night and they were closed then. When we actually got the photos, they had done it the wrong way. 4 with her eyes closed and one with her eyes open. Dining: The Windjammer buffet was absolutely not an option for me. The labels were over my head and I could not see them from the scooter and I could not reach some of the food. Occasionally someone would offer to help me, but usually I had to get my husband to get me food. There were some times when it was not possible to get any food. For example, earlier than 6:30 am, or between breakfast and lunch in the Windjammer. They did a good job with the various allergies in our group (gluten, peanuts, lactose). In the main dining room, we had a nice round table for all of us on the first night (My Time Dining). We went to Chops the second night, and we were never able to get that good table again. We would get to the dining room as it opened and there was already someone seated at that table. Instead we had to have a long table which meant that we couldn't really talk to the people on the ends of the table. We mostly ate breakfast and lunch in the Great Gatsby. I like the chopped salad at lunch, and one afternoon, Bob had just shrimp and ice cream. The dinner at Chops was good - they did the sides family style. Port & shore excursions: I did not take any excursions because I have been to Bermuda eight times previously and I had booked a private guide. It was absolutely ridiculous to keep people not on excursions from getting off immediately. My children liked the Hidden Gems Tour and the Crystal Caves Tour, and one of them (who brought her bicycle) did some of the Railway Trail. Disembarkation: Very quick and easy Summary: We were able to do a lot of family activities and we had fun together. Bermuda was, as always, beautiful but our time there was too short. A five day cruise is just not long enough. I think two of our daughters are coming back by airplane and staying on the island Read Less
Sail Date: May 2019
We took the train from North Carolina the day before and stayed at the Holiday Inn Express across from the Casino. The hotel was clean but unremarkable. We were pleasantly surprised to see others who would be sailing with us there along ... Read More
We took the train from North Carolina the day before and stayed at the Holiday Inn Express across from the Casino. The hotel was clean but unremarkable. We were pleasantly surprised to see others who would be sailing with us there along with at least one Pinnacle couple. The shuttle from the hotel was already full for the early times so we decided to Uber it over. Less than $20 with tip. As we were arriving some of the folks from the previous sailing were still milling about and looking for their rides. The site did not have a lot of signs and we had to carry our checked luggage over to trams to be loaded. Since we were so early, we grabbed a bench outside and less than 15 minutes later someone got us and we went through security and to the check-in process. Mostly painless, but the brace on my wife's leg seemed to puzzle the security people. Still, we were one of the first checked in and shown the suite lounge. In the lounge, we were joined by some others including a nice couple cruising by themselves without their kids and family. Hi Tim and Tracy! We joked about the "difficulties" of getting to the port but agreed this was a smooth process. After about 15 minutes, they came and got us. As I mentioned, my wife had a knee brace from a broken leg and we got to enter the ship from deck 1 and not have to use the gangway. A nice option for those with mobility issues. At 10:03 we were on the pool deck and heading for the bar. We had the deluxe beverage package and wasted no time using it. It was a bit of a splurge, but we checked prices and got a great deal. In my opinion, the package is great because it offers you the ability to not worry about getting a drink. We waited for the Windjammer to open and called family and friends to let them know that vacation had started and they wouldn't likely hear much from us except pictures on Facebook of us having a good time! The food in the Windjammer was always good and varied. Most of the times the crowds were not too bad except at the made to order egg line. My wife mentioned a couple of times that the food was a little cool. I didn't think that myself. We split our breakfasts from the Windjammer and the main dining room. The Windjammer is more convenient, but we like the fact that you can sit with different people each day and have some great conversations. We did Mytime dining and had the same waiter and assistant waiter (Michael and Derick). They were wonderful and took amazing care of us. We skipped dinner on the first day in Bermuda since our tour got back late and ate at Giovanni's one night, but our MDR experience was outstanding. We hadn't eaten at Giovanni's before since my wife doesn't eat pasta, but we did it this time because I had to try the Pasta Carbonara. It was good. I did try small portions of several portions of pasta as well as shrimp and my wife had a filet. All was very good and we agreed that we would have to eat at Giovanni's again. We loved the entertainers that we saw, but we were disappointed by the ruckus in the comedy show the last night. We weren't there, so I'm not going to go further into it. There were some very talented guests and the karaoke performances were great. We actually gravitated to the Schooner bar by the end of the cruise. At night, we were entertained by the piano player, Danny Burgess, he was great at pulling the guests into his performance and even got several ladies to sing along clucking like chickens including my wife. He is out of Texas and had to fill in for Giovanni who got sick the cruise before ours. If you get a chance to hear Danny, don't pass it up. On Bermuda, we did a private tour with another couple with Quinton Bean and got an amazing tour of the islands and their history. The only complaint I have is the fact that we didn't dock until 2 PM and much the island slows down or shuts down in the late afternoon. It didn't help that we got there on a Saturday. Sunday was even slower and the weather was bad - nasty storms and lightning. We planned on going to Horseshoe Bay, but the weather kept us at the dockyard - most of which was closed. Nassau was Nassau, nothing remarkable. On Coco Cay, we rented a Chill Island Cabana(Oceanfront when we booked it). They revamped the cabana area with the whole Perfect Day relaunch. It was still a great time and having the nice calm cove with all the fish was great. For the right price, I'd do it again. The best part of this cruise and was the core group that was part of the Roll Call page. We had a meet and Mingle hosted by John and Katrina Blair and some of us did an impromptu cabin crawl. Definitely some ideas for future cruises. We do junior suites but are now on the lookout for aft view JSes and good prices on full suites. We have sailed on Grandeur before, but will she has aged some, you'd not be able to tell by looking at her and the crew and service are still the best part of a trip on "Lady G"! Read Less
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