33 Southampton to Europe - Western Mediterranean Royal Caribbean Adventure of the Seas Cruise Reviews

Well , let's start at embarkation , which was changed from 11am to 2pm due to a deep cleanse requires as norovirus was on the previous sailing. All went quite well ,considering. Although the muster was a bit of a shambles , as guests ... Read More
Well , let's start at embarkation , which was changed from 11am to 2pm due to a deep cleanse requires as norovirus was on the previous sailing. All went quite well ,considering. Although the muster was a bit of a shambles , as guests still walking on at that time. Our first cruise , we absolutely loved it. Met some nice people , food was good , and most importantly , the service was great. Staff really couldn't have done more for you . I really loved the entertainment , every evening we went to a Different show , loved the ice show and G4 s Jonathan , enough to do , and the ports of call were interesting although the Barcelona tour guide was not so good and barely spoke English . Loved the whole cruising thing , although not so much as some customers who seemed to have done upwards of ten cruises on the same itinerary ("not getting off at Vigo dear, we've been there 8times before "!) that would bore me , but I can see the draw of the floating hotel thing for the elderly . Being fifty something, I would be drawn only by new itineraries , and exciting places to visit. However, it was really fab to have a good night out a few drinks , a sing song around the piano, and didn't have to get a taxi home. Special stars were the dining room staff , Linnell and Sachin and Eddie, were really great and a credit to RC. Personally we preferred the dining room to the self serve windjammer, which was often like Victoria station on a Monday morning. Although ok for a quick bite. Cruise director bobby was good , and kept us all informed . One gripe was that we were not informed that the meet and mingle was changed to another venue and time , so missed that sadly. Read Less
Sail Date October 2014
Just returned from 14 night Western Med on AOS,getting onboard was total nightmare but for our own safe and well being as so many passengers were taking ill on cruise before. Onboard and everything was brillant,crew ... Read More
Just returned from 14 night Western Med on AOS,getting onboard was total nightmare but for our own safe and well being as so many passengers were taking ill on cruise before. Onboard and everything was brillant,crew entertainment,food,amazing locations my fav was Barcelona. Cabin was very very clean at all times our lady was called Sandra she was amazing,clean towels most days,it was also very roomy didnt use the balcony that much as wanted to be up on the decks all the time. MDR we had my time dining which suited us as we liked to have early dinner,had same time and table every night our waiters were Wilfredo and Benjamin they were out standing one night we were served and had eaten in 41 mins good one All in had a great time,lots of hand washing cos of the illness before but who doesnt wash their hands . Royal Caribbean well done to you Read Less
Sail Date October 2014
This was our 4th cruise, 3rd with RCI and worst. It started of with the utter chaos at Southampton waiting to board the ship, due to the deep clean and the Norovirus outbreak from the previous cruise that was being carried out on board the ... Read More
This was our 4th cruise, 3rd with RCI and worst. It started of with the utter chaos at Southampton waiting to board the ship, due to the deep clean and the Norovirus outbreak from the previous cruise that was being carried out on board the ship. We had received the e-mail to tell us about the deep clean so paid extra to our hotel to keep our room longer. But at 2pm we had to head for the ship. There was only one person from RCI outside the terminal to inform us of what was happening with no real success. At about 4.30pm we get into the terminal and then onto the ship. Once on board it was straight to the muster drill, this was started before everyone was board, I got told afterwards that not all people got the muster drill until the next day. After the drill we were told that our cabins were ready....this was not true, the stewards were still doing the deep clean, and people were not very happy trying to get into their cabins. This was resolved at around 6.30pm lucky we opted for the 8.30pm dinner, the bags arrived in good time. Due to the threat of the virus the Windjammer was not self service until breakfast on the Sunday as we left to go home. After a few days of being served like this I felt I was in the school dining room, the crew that served you food never took off the gloves after serving someone their food and handling their plate, and the crew that wiped the tables used the same cloth over and over again. The main dining rooms were fine with great service from the waiters although the Maitre d caused a couple at our dinner table some grief because of their opinions on the mid cruise survey. After this run in they never came back to eat dinner. The meals was fine if you liked seafood which was on the menu far too often, as I don't like seafood my starter most night was Caeser salad. The steward that cleaned the cabin was excellent and very helpful, the carpet was well worn, the sofa was too, the balcony patchwork was different shade of white and rust. Bar staff were great and very attentive, and the entertainment was good also. We never used RCI for any excursions, way over priced. Getting off and back on the ship at the ports was terrible with long queues. Disembarkation is swift and easy and no queuing for once. This was maybe due to another deep clean. After all the Norovirus issues could have been dealt better, the figures from the previous cruise the number of people affected with the virus varied so much that we didn't believe the figures, that we was told about. . Read Less
Sail Date October 2014
We usually book inside cabins on the 18 cruises we have been on and we had cabin 7131 on this ship that we havent been on before.It had twin beds pushed together for a queen and my wife had to climb on the bed as it was too near the ... Read More
We usually book inside cabins on the 18 cruises we have been on and we had cabin 7131 on this ship that we havent been on before.It had twin beds pushed together for a queen and my wife had to climb on the bed as it was too near the wall.Mornings around 5am the noise from above started. We phoned reception and 2 security guards who investigated said it was kitchen preparation and it wouldnt happen again. It did. Reception staff were pleasant and anxious to please and found us a cabin with a window and larger. We than had to shift all our luggage and a steward helped with the changeover. The weather was amazing sunshine all the way unusual for the Med in October. The restaurant food was excellent and Jenny Shimrah and Xiaoquan (her assistant) we amazing (He sang Happy Birthday in Chinese for me) We have had good service before but this was exceptional. Entertainment was the usual reasonable standard except the hypnotist who was amazing. Went to the show twice. Most unusual. The ship had done a deep clean as it had the norovirus and all the staff were continually cleaning and wiping surfaces even reception staff and dancers and the orchestra. Library was closed because of this which was a shame. All three pools were very chilly. In spite of the room problems for the first week, we would go Royal Caribbean again. Read Less
Sail Date October 2014
After many cruises with RC,we have always come home excited to tell everyone about the unusual and special things that only happen on a cruise. We have cruised with many cruise lines and of course they also have that one and only type of ... Read More
After many cruises with RC,we have always come home excited to tell everyone about the unusual and special things that only happen on a cruise. We have cruised with many cruise lines and of course they also have that one and only type of holiday that you get when cruising. Last year we went with three different cruise lines NCL, in March, RC,Adventure Of The Seas in July and in October P & O. Each had a small spin on the same unique holiday called cruising. On 29 Oct 2014, We have just come back form the cruise dated 12 October 2014 Called Med Cities,on The Adventure Of The Seas, in a Junior Suite Room number 7692. What a Big difference a year makes as this is the second time in a row we have used this ship we were in the Italian part of the med last year!! First of all I would like to say we feel we were duped by getting a Junior Suite all that money for a few extra square feet!!!! disgusting Although we were told that we had restricted viewing We were not told that on the days we could actually go on the balcony we would have to put up with staff on the deck just below ours having their breaks sitting there smoking and messing around. Of course it's not their fault But had we been informed of this we would not have taken the room even if it was for free!!!( We will never ever get another Junior Suite!! With the restricted views we hardly had any sunshine our Balcony It was always wet or damp couldn't really use it!!!! When we looked out our views were completely spoilt by the staff smoking and chatting!! ( Again it's not there fault they have to sit there!!) We went to reception to comment the lady wasn't interest and said all we could do was write to you at head office, Royal Caribbean on our return!!! We traveled bus which was new, comfortable and for us it meant the start of our holiday. We were late getting on the ship due to a strict hygiene deep clean after a small S & D breakout on the previous cruise. The Safety Drill went ahead even though passengers were still trying to broad THIS IS SURELY AGAINST MARITIME LAW as all passengers must take part!!!!!! Albeit that your staff in the past have been Fabulous on this trip they weren't!!!!! We would stress that it's not there fault, it's all the cutbacks, less staff working to hard, making mistakes and making our time very impersonal To which we were saddened to see!!!!!! What's happened to all the nice things like folded towels etc. Ice Sculptures, dinner staff going around singing or just to music with us guests waving our serviettes,The Flower Trolley, champagne and chocolates,this is the type of thing we liked on our cruises. Making this type of holiday unique, that's why we chose cruising and introduced our friends and family to it there were twelve of us last year and it was wonderful what's Happened!!!!!!!!!!! Last year a few of our group smoked they went outside didn't mind at all but this year you have allowed it in the casino we use the casino quite a bit and all we could smell was smoke it was awful and In fact that is all you could smell all over!!! I'm sure in fact I know it's not allowed to be in public places because secondary smoking causes CANCER it's also against the law!!!!!! But as you are on the ocean you think you can do as you please If that carries on that's something else we will not be doing going in the casino!!!!!!!!! It's so sad to see a company of your calibre and 40 plus years in the business to loose track on what cruising is all about we know that it's always about making money but surely please don't loose sight of that personal touch that quite a lot of cruisers like. The staff have always been very polite and professional but to many cutbacks has changed all that, My Time dinning has also changed the way the staff interact, they just don't have the time to be friendly!!!!! Even your entertainment has become like what you would expect on a caravan camp holiday!! Although their was a couple of star turns to which you flew in!!!!! The ship it's self was in need of a complete update because everywhere looked dated. We read that the ship had some work done on some areas but we did not see this!!!!!! Our only savour to this holiday was the trips we took around the cities, getting off the ship for home was good! We have a cruise booked next year and sadly if it's like the one we have just been on we won't be returning to Royal Caribbean. Thankyou for listening and we hope you can take these few points on board. Shaun Wood   Read Less
Sail Date October 2014
As my title says it was so much better than I had been expecting from someof the reviews I had read. Getting on board at Southampton was a piece of cake, our balcony cabin on deck 6 was spotless and Bobby our steward couldnt have done more ... Read More
As my title says it was so much better than I had been expecting from someof the reviews I had read. Getting on board at Southampton was a piece of cake, our balcony cabin on deck 6 was spotless and Bobby our steward couldnt have done more to help us(even reminding us that we had walked past our cabin :) ).The food in the windjammer was always hot and there was always plenty to chose from.I didnt see anyone get into the buffet without using the hand sanitiser.Even at busy times you could usually find a table to eat at. The main dining room on deck 5 (ATD) was great we ate there every evening and the waiters were always happy to change a dish if you did not like it.We were never rushed to leave the table. We tried many of the bars, our favorite was the Champagne bar were the staff were great (Dennis makes great Cocktails) I am not saying that everything was perfect, but overall a great holiday. Read Less
Sail Date September 2014
Have today returned from 12 nights around Western Med and am very disappointed. First went on this ship in 2010 and loved it. Now not so sure. Yes it was August but the ship was over run with out of control children. Not too bad during ... Read More
Have today returned from 12 nights around Western Med and am very disappointed. First went on this ship in 2010 and loved it. Now not so sure. Yes it was August but the ship was over run with out of control children. Not too bad during the day but at night time it was a joke. They were everywhere and no one was controlling them; least of all their parents who were nowhere to be seen. They were going around in gangs and doing the things that gangs do: noise, bad language; pressing all the buttons in lifts, leaving food and plates in the lifts, on staircases and everywhere in between. Pool side at night was a war zone with them throwing food and drink all over the place. We found the hygiene standards had dropped seriously. Tables were left uncleared for hours, very few were ever wiped leaving sticky surfaces so you were wary of putting your belongings on them. There was a noticable lack of staff and those who were visible did not seem to have any heart in their job. Food left a lot to be desired. We used the Windjammer and were amazed at the lack of choice. Every day was the same food: sushi, pasta, and curries. If we were lucky there was fish or a meat pie but the vegetables as potatoes left a lot to be desired. Desserts were the same every day as well. Half a cup of jelly, carrot cake and fresh fruit. A different steamed pudding was available with watery or lumpy custard but no-one had thought to cut the sponge into sections so after 5 minutes it resembled a disaster zone. The whole cruise was likened to a booze cruise as a large majority of guests felt it was their duty to get as drunk as possible using their drinks package deals. On the last night security had to be called to a lone middle aged woman who was sitting in the smoking lounge abusing everybody in there. She was absolutely slaughtered and had to be removed back to her cabin. She managed to upset several people with her behaviour and we were later told she had done the same just 2 nights earlier in the Dog and Duck pub. Security handled her and the situation extremely well but maybe they should have stopped selling her drinks sooner. This sort of behaviour is not what we expected on Royal Caribbean and it has certainly put us off going again with them. Entertainment in the Lyric Theatre was very poor. One night they showed a film despite having the on deck big screen and a viewing room (small cinema)   Read Less
Sail Date August 2014
This was our 7th Cruise, 1st time with Royal Caribbean, previously with MSC and Carnival. From what I'd read and heard about Royal Caribbean was expecting it to be something quite special with lots going on and although this is one of ... Read More
This was our 7th Cruise, 1st time with Royal Caribbean, previously with MSC and Carnival. From what I'd read and heard about Royal Caribbean was expecting it to be something quite special with lots going on and although this is one of their medium sized boats it appeared to have plenty of stuff on it to keep the kids occupied. The boat was in good order and appeared to have been well maintained, nothing rattled or shook in the room. Generally everything regards service, quality of food, helpfulness of staff was good, if a little laid back compared to other lines we have been on. Entertainment on the other hand was dreadful - maybe we'd been spoilt on Carnival which on both occasions were brand new entertainment theatres with state of the art sound lighting and video systems - in comparison the Royal Caribbean offering seemed dated and lack-lustre. The acts whilst professional and good at their particular skill were just put on stage by the cruise director and left to it - no top and tail with any of the in-house production team, and seemed to be no thought to come up with anything uplifting or varied - a guy playing a violin one night, a girl playing piano another, a string quartet, a women doing songs from what has to be one of the most depressing musicals (Tell me on a Sunday) I've ever had the misfortune to sit through, a woman's various failed relationships set to music - hardly the stuff of a fun holiday. The in-house shows were little better, dancers fine, performers drowned out by the band. Of all the shows in the theatre only the Queen tribute could be described as a good evening, assuming you liked the music of Queen! The cruise directors shows weren't much better on the promenade and were basically little more that the kind of thing you'd see bluecoats doing 20 years ago at Pontins - perhaps they would have been a bit better if the large annoying assistant cruise director hadn't felt the need to spend the half the time yelling into a microphone trying to get the crowd to join in (lets face it if you have to do that then you're doing it wrong - crowd should do it spontaneously not have to be pushed into doing it!). It was all rather Chavvy and not really what I want out of a £5000 cruise. I did query with the cruise director fairly early on if things were likely to improve, he listened, wasn't really able to offer anything to counter my comments other than he felt everyone else was enjoying it, not quite the feedback I got from my straw poll of various people I spoke to!. On the plus side Ice show was excellent, cruise directors staff were very pleasant when doing the quizzes or other activities and their time keeping was absolutely spot on everything started bang on time. Would I do Royal Caribbean again - not if Carnival had any boats in Europe - if not them maybe, I liked everything about the boat except the entertainment - perhaps if they get enough negative feedback they might sort that part of things out or maybe if they check out what the competition is offering. Read Less
Sail Date August 2014
Just got back from a 12 night cruise around the med. This was our first cruise and having read the reviews (which some were negative) didn't really know what to expect. Check in was quick and simple. Once on board we were straight to ... Read More
Just got back from a 12 night cruise around the med. This was our first cruise and having read the reviews (which some were negative) didn't really know what to expect. Check in was quick and simple. Once on board we were straight to our room which was very clean and comfortable. We chose a balcony, deck 7, room 7530. The room assistant was very good, she kept making us animals out of the towels too. The food was brilliant from both the windjammer and the main dining room. The ship its self was also clean with the cleaners visible everywhere. The service from the staff was second to none, always polite and helpful. I agree with a review further down about the children, however if you choose to travel during school holidays there are going to be children on board, however they should be more supervised by their parents. Entertainment was good, the magician on the last night was amazing. Ports of call were lovely, with things to do near by if you didn't want to venture to far from the ship. The cruise compass left in your room each night told you everything you needed to know about the next day eg time of arrival and departure from ports (this was also repeat by the captain in the morning) also what was happening on the ship the next day. Drinks were not too expensive aboard the ship. If i decided to cruise again i would have no worries about booking RCI. One negative point (this is nothing to do with the staff, this is the passengers on board) if you have a drink or some food away from cafes and bars, take your plate, cup or glass back to where you got it from. If the cleaners had just cleaned the area you left these in they may be there a short while before a cleaner returns to this area They are there to look after you, they are not your slaves. Well done to all the staff on board our cruise, and keep up the good work. Disembarking the ship was half an hour ahead of our selected time. Read Less
Sail Date August 2014
I went on my first RCI cruise and I thought that I would be happy and satisfied with my experience. I wasn't, these were because of a few reasons. 1. My Time Dining: the concept does not work on this ship as you have to reserve a ... Read More
I went on my first RCI cruise and I thought that I would be happy and satisfied with my experience. I wasn't, these were because of a few reasons. 1. My Time Dining: the concept does not work on this ship as you have to reserve a table for every night and not just turn up when you would like. If you are late you are shouted at by rude staff and forced to wait. 2. The in-ability to get a sun bed. There are people who get up and put towels on sun beds at 6am each morning. There is a rule which says that they will be removed after 30 minutes, this was not enforced and not acknowledged by staff when I complained. This was something that was felt by many guests. 3. The in-ability to get to shows. You are unable to get into game shows or quizzes if you do not arrive 30 minutes before it is about to begin. One night, after the show, 4,000 people were invited to go to a game show where only 200 people could sit in the audience. There is a large theatre which is hardly used which would be useful for the shows where many people attend. 4. Poor food in the Windjammer Cafe. The food in the Windjammer has no identity as you have spring roles situated next to a pie. There is no reason for things to be put next to each other. Over 14 days I did not receive a hot meal. The quality of the food was generally poor. 5. The rudeness of staff. When you have a complaint that requires compensation the customary line is "if i compensate you I have to compensate all the guests". This is rubbish as when I complain I only care about myself. When you talk to the cruise director about issues, like sun beds, they take no responsibility and act as if it is just one of those things. Not the case when you're on holiday. 6. The quality of some entertainers was poor. Some entertainers were so poor that they were funny and were put in at peak times. (juggling acts etc) 7. Shore excursions. I booked one excursion for Rome which cost $200 for 3 people and they took us to a town where everything was closed and then someone's house for some bread. No commentary or historical information. Again they were reluctant to accept responsibility. I wold therefore not recommend RCI for the prices that they charge and what you get for your money. Read Less
Sail Date July 2014
We say that most of the staff of Royal Caribbean have to work with situations they can not control. Our stateroom steward was wonderful. He had to deal with our terrible situation. 1. Restroom smelled like urine everyday. He used bleach ... Read More
We say that most of the staff of Royal Caribbean have to work with situations they can not control. Our stateroom steward was wonderful. He had to deal with our terrible situation. 1. Restroom smelled like urine everyday. He used bleach regular to clean and pour down the drain. 2. The stateroom smelled like urine regularly. 3. The refrigerator did not work. Told 5 minutes after arriving. The steward called repeatedly. On night 12 the steward changed the refrigerator on the guest service called to say they replaced it when they found out. So it was day 13 before we knew it worked. 4. Soot was on the bed, regularly, coming from the air conditioning vent. 5. The lock on the stateroom stuck almost everyday. 6. The dietary issues. The chef was Jamaican, and when told by the head waiter what to make, would not. Deserts were repeats of the samething. They tried to issue fruit. I would do what I was told by the head waiter. Then I would go to the grill at lunch, no desert of limited choice for meal. Then the food was often not the correct temperature. Hot food cold, cold food warm. 7. Then discuss issues. The guest service would not answer, or just shrug her shoulders. 8. The Guest Services was not forthcoming on port information. All options of port transportation. Say there was only a 15 euro transport, but there was one that was free, Valencia, Spain. 9. The ship had a terrible smell of waste on the fourth deck by the theater. 10. Royal Caribbean is missing the final touches. They are lacking the staff to complete. Less staff in the dining room. They don't clean the table from crumbs after dinner before desert. There was a shortage of staff. 11. Payment for things that use to be free. We would show up to a craft presentation, they would want to charge $9.95. People would get up and leave once they found the price. I filled out the survey for them. What is so said, people on the cruise brought things up everyday at breakfast. We didn't say a thing. 50 percent of the guest did not go to the dining room. The head waiter said the cruise before was 98 percent. These low numbers were unheard of. People left the theater in droves some nights. The performances were poor. It was a major conversation the next day at breakfast and dinner. There was something that were good. We had a good time with many people. Made new friends. We bonded on the terrible service and problems of the day. We are thankful we were not stranded at sea. If we had never had the quality service of the past cruises, we wouldn't know better. That is why future cruises must be on another company. We have had a good trip overall, but were very disappointed with Royal Caribbean. Read Less
Sail Date July 2014
First of all I need to say I don’t work for RCI but I feel I need to put the facts and stop some of the total rubbish that’s being put on this site about Adventure of the Seas. We have just come back from the Western Med cruise and ... Read More
First of all I need to say I don’t work for RCI but I feel I need to put the facts and stop some of the total rubbish that’s being put on this site about Adventure of the Seas. We have just come back from the Western Med cruise and had a fantastic time. I read a lot on Cruise Critic and some of it is utterly not true. Good Bits Food - The food was excellent and piping hot in all the restaurants. The staff work very hard to meet the needs of the passengers and they had time to interact with my 5 year old who loved it. We ate in all the restaurants and if you want high end dining then Portofino’s is the place for that but you do pay a cover charge of $20 each, it is well worth it. Entertainment - The entertainment was good and the ice show is worth the effort of getting the tickets. We went to 6 shows and they were all good. It’s a cruise ship not the west end. Pools - The pools are fine and not crowded. If you go in the summer holidays what do you expect. The kids pools and clean and my boy loved the water slide. Children who are not potty trained cannot use the pools. I felt sorry for the little ones as the travel agents had not told them this. It happened to us when our little boy was 2 on Independence of the Seas. Travel agents not RCI need to get there facts right. The solarium is super if you want adult time and we used it a lot when Ben was in his clubs. Children - We use RCI for this and this alone. They are the best with kids, from the clubs to the in room babysitting it’s all very good. My little boy loved it and a big thanks to all the kids club staff who made his holiday. The babysitting is $19 an hour and is well worth it to get our nights out. The children’s clubs are fun but educational and they work with the kids to promote a positive environment. Shopping - The only thing that needs to be looked at is the shopping. We don’t want $10 dollar rubbish that some of our fellow passengers seemed to lap up. I also am not spending $5000 on jewellery. A big gap and one they need to sort out. Why not sell Pandora not a cheap copy. Drinks - I love to read how people think the drinks are too expensive. Have you been to London in the last 20 years. They are fine ($7) £4.43 for a beer and ($8) £5.06 for a glass of wine. The premium drinks package is well worth it and we would do it again. It includes house champagne OK it may not be Bolly, but it is fine. If you drink 5-6 drinks a day you will be happy with the return. On the matter of some drinks not being included thats right but the bar tender will offer an alternative. If you drink Hennessey XO then PAY FOR IT. Excretions - We only did one and it was fine the price was fair $125 for the 3 of us and it was well run and interesting. We like to go off on our own and so don’t do them that often. Bad Bits I have in my time never met such a bunch of rude, freeloading, money grabbing, moaning people. As an earlier cruise critic contributor said, it’s not the young that are the problem it is the older people. We try to set a good example for our child and in the last 14 days, he has witnessed people being rude to staff, stealing and a complete lack of courtesy to fellow passengers. Having witnessed people taking large quantities of hot chocolate sachets, jam and marmalade pots, even trying to take the salt and pepper pots, we find this behaviour utterly pathetic. The staff work extremely hard for long hours and should not be expected to put up with the abuse that we witnessed in the vain attempt to try and get something for free. Trying to have your gratuities refunded in my opinion makes you complete scum. I have witnessed several people at the Guest Services desk wanting a refund of their gratuities they have no conscious. These people work for very low wages and rely on their tips. If you can’t afford it, then don’t book the holiday. My serious suggestion to RCI is to make 2 changes. 1) Put the prices up and send these people back to Fred Olsen and Saga and 2) charge for coffee you make nothing from these people. Their onboard spend is probably less than we spent in one day. If I hear one more person compare RCI to Cunard, I am going to put them straight. What a rude bunch of individuals you are. If it is so wonderful, what are you doing on here? Could it be the price? On the occasions where we have had any issues, these are only very minor, it has been dealt with efficiently, generously and with the upmost professionalism. I have vented my upset, so back to the good bits! We met some lovely people and you all know who you are! Thank you for your company and companionship. To the crew, we thank you for a wonderful holiday and keep doing the great work you certainly have the wow factor! Javier our Room Steward you kept our room beautifully tidy, not an easy job with a 5 year old around! Brigette, Mariella and our other babysitters thank you so much. Savio, Vitela, Mac Allister and our other Waiters a huge thank you and to lovely Donald the Head Waiter thank you for making our evenings so special. And lastly to our Champagne Bar Staff, Allan and Stan you rock! Won’t forget singing the Muppett Song and the other crazy stuff we all got up to! And finally to Captain Henrich, what can we say, what an utter superstar! Both commanding but witty and a lovely interaction with the passengers. One of the best we have ever had on RCI. To finish this review, as the Captain would say "That’s all Folks”!   Read Less
Sail Date October 2013
This is our first cruise so I write this with the caveat that we have no experience to base this on other than this cruise. We decided to go with Royal Caribbean as they seemed to address the family market well. Not knowing if we would ... Read More
This is our first cruise so I write this with the caveat that we have no experience to base this on other than this cruise. We decided to go with Royal Caribbean as they seemed to address the family market well. Not knowing if we would like cruising we chose to book with a guaranteed inside cabin. Before you read on I want to say that we had a fantastic cruise experience and all the staff and the dining were exceptional despite the cruise being disrupted by very bad weather. Adventure On The Seas : The Cruise Travelling at the end of October from the UK along the coast of France and down the Atlantic side of Spain across the Bay of Biscay was always going to be a bit of gamble - and we naturally hit the first big storm of the year! The ship left Southampton on time (which at the time we thought we might end up staying in port) and sailed across the channel to Cherbourg in a gale. There was a fair bit of movement in the ship but the ship took the weather well - although most of the water in the pools were emptied with spectacular 12 foot waves of pool water being ejected at each of the pool! As such and due to restrictions where you can refill pools at sea, the main pools had no water for several days but the jacuzzis were open which was fine given the weather. Anchoring off the coast of France we stayed at sea for an extra day postponing our first port of call a day. Our stop in Bilbao was cancelled due to a storm in the Bay of Biscay and due to the change in dates arriving at the ports of Vigo and Gijon meant we arrived on public holidays and everything was closed. Another storm then forced a further change in plans that put Bilbao back on the ports of call which was well received by everyone as this was the highlight of the cruise. Finally industrial action at the French ports meant we could no longer call at the port of Le Havre and the captain made the decision to head back to the channel to avoid a new storm threatening a safe passage back. The transit back across the Bay of Biscay was very rough and the Ice Show planned for that evening was moved to the following night - good call in my opinion. Dining: Totally awesome. We chose My Time dining which worked well for us. We pre-booked our first days evening dinner with the intention that we would alternate between the dining room and the WindJammer. Since my wife uses a wheelchair the dining room was much easier and as such we ended up choosing the same time each night at the same table. We found the WindJammer difficult with the wheelchair as it was difficult to find a seat that was easily accessible and often by the time we got there someone else had beaten us to it. Also I had to select food for my wife as this was also difficult in a chair. Often the serving staff would find a seat for you if they noticed you looking or if you asked. This may have been exacerbated by having a full ship and 800 children. In both restaurants the food was varied and excellent. Excursions: Booking excursions that would take a wheelchair was painful than it needed to be as we had to email two separate parts with RCI; one to organise getting on board and the second to organise the excursions. We had to fill in two different forms with virtually the same information and then had to wait over a week for a reply as to which excursions could accommodate a wheelchair. We then had to complete another form which we had to return by the next day at the latest. Although we started this process a month ahead of the cruise, in future we'll sort this at least 6 weeks in advance. The excursions are expensive - having said that I've never been on any package holiday where they are cheap either. The ship did run a shuttle bus at each port, but the local taxis would have been much cheaper for us. We took 2 excursions, both were good, but could have been longer - I guess that's the nature of cruising, you really only get a taster of each port. The guides were excellent and given our ever changing schedule was a very safe option to ensure we were back on board in time (some people did get left behind!!). Cherbourg: We took an excursion to the D-Day beaches. The tour was good, the drive to the beaches takes about an hour. Could have spent alot more time here but the all aboard time was quite early as we needed to depart ahead of the weather. This would be difficult to do on your own. Vigo: We went ashore and picked up a local sightseeing tour that tooks us all around the town for around an hour (total 22 euro). Nice town very pretty with lots to see if you are good walkers. Gijon: We didn't go ashore as it was a holiday and all the shops were shut, plus the weather was miserable. Shuttle bus was $15 each for a 40min drive to the town. Bilbao: We took an excursion round the town and into the Guggenheim. The tour guides were excellent and the museum was fantastic. You could do this yourself, shuttle bus was $10 each and a taxi was $28. Town was quite compact so easily walkable. Entertainment: A mixed bag here. The teens club didn't catered well for our 16 year old son but the weather didn't help as the outside space was closed for a fair amount of the time - that makes them a tough crowd to please - which is no fault of the cruise. The evening shows were quite short (1 hr) and ranged from good to really excellent. The Ice Show and the Motown show were exceptional. The cinema is tiny and on a rough sea day it was always full. My only complaint - which is levelled at the other people on our cruise - is that when the show ends it is almost impossible to get a lift if you are in a wheelchair. One evening we waited for a lift and twice in a row before we could get in the people behind us pushed in front and filled the lift. We had no option but to use the lift - the stairs to the next level were only about as high as your domestic staircase. I was staggered at how inconsiderate and rude people could be. The Crew: The crew were excellent, the decisions made by Captain Henrik were good, even though this changed our itinerary considerably. Everyone I spoke to whilst a little disappointed respected the decisions made. We were kept well informed and the Captain and the crew managed the situation with good humour. Cuddy, Drew and Captain Henrik were very funny and all the broadcasts were in good humour and great to watch / listen to. Extras: Drinks and the drinks packages are expensive - you could spend a fortune here. Because we left from the UK, RCI put kettles in the cabins with tea bags but no coffee, when I asked about this they said that they were learning the UK market and may put coffee sachets in future. We bought some juice drinks and a soft drinks package each before we joined the ship. In hindsight we wouldn't get the juice drinks again as these were available in the restaurants free anyway (not freshly squeezed) nor would we have soft drinks for my wife and I - tea and coffee was readily available. We chose not to have a alcoholic package - these were $$$ - instead we bought wine by the bottle at the table (approx. $30 for the wine of the day) - we're not big drinkers and a bottle lasted two nights. Tips: The staff work very hard, their wages are basic and they rely on the tips topping it up. This is a US cruise ship not a UK one - US rules apply. We factored tips as part of our cruise costs - the cruise was very competitively priced so it figures that they are expecting to make the revenue from onboard purchases and excursions. Our housekeeper was telling us how they had looked after a party fully occupying 6 cabins (24 people). At the end of the cruise they would expect around $100 per cabin but the party reclaimed all their tips and left $50! Don't reclaim your tips that's a pretty low thing to do. We prepaid and left some extra - the prepay is part of our cost, the extra is the tip IMHO.   Read Less
Sail Date October 2013
From our overnight stay at the Travelodge, Eastleigh, to the wonderful port parking at Southampton docks, our holiday got off to a terrific start. We were taking our daughter on her first cruise as a present for completing her Masters, so ... Read More
From our overnight stay at the Travelodge, Eastleigh, to the wonderful port parking at Southampton docks, our holiday got off to a terrific start. We were taking our daughter on her first cruise as a present for completing her Masters, so we were keen to board and show her around our ship. Embarkation was flawless. And as usual, friendly helpful staff were there to guide us through the boarding process, and we boarded around 12.00 mid day. As we knew our cabin wouldn't be ready, we made our way to the very very busy Windjammer and were able to snag a table almost immediately. The place was heaving, and after we ate our lunch we were delighted to hear that cabins were now open. Our cabin 9358, was a triple room with balcony, towards the back of the ship. It was a good sized cabin, with very little motion or engine noise. However, each morning almighty bangs were heard from the floor above, as we were opposite a service door, we presumed these were deliveries. They did not impact on our cabin experience in any way. Sadly during the first night I came down with a gastrointestinal illness which I believe came from my buffet lunch . After seeing the ship's doctor, I was quarantined to the cabin on a diet of dry toast and peppermint tea. I was given free access to the movie channels and the mini bar at no charge. The infirmary staff were wonderful, kind caring and professional. The next day I was allowed mashed potato and white rice to compliment the dry toast and peppermint tea. With all the wonderful food on board this was very difficult to swallow, but very good for the waistline! Eventually I was allowed out of the cabin, but not into public areas, however, the following day ( our first port of call Gibraltar) I was allowed to leave the ship, but still on the restricted diet. Our dining room experience was wonderful. We were seated with some lovely people, and our waiter Josep, and his assistant Barjolette were just superb. So efficient and organised, it was a pleasure to be at their table. The shows we saw were very good. I thought David Copperfield was hilarious, he was so entertaining and such a lot of fun. The ice show was, as usual exemplarary. And the daily quizzes were brilliant. Out of all of our ports only two disappointed us, and that was Gibraltar and Lisbon. Gibraltar was like any British high street, and Lisbon was dirty, graffiti ridden and just generally not pleasant. All our other ports were gorgeous, Corsica being my very favourite. We loved every inch of the ship, so much so, we have booked our 30th wedding anniversary cruise for next September back on the AOS- however, we've treated ourselves to a suite. Leaving the ship was a little chaotic, but once we were called we easily found our luggage and left the port very smoothly.   Read Less
Sail Date September 2013
Looked forward to this cruise as had a busy year and there would be no hassle of flying!! Was pleased with everything on board. All staff were friendly and helpful . This was our eighth cruise with Royal Caribbean so we knew how everything ... Read More
Looked forward to this cruise as had a busy year and there would be no hassle of flying!! Was pleased with everything on board. All staff were friendly and helpful . This was our eighth cruise with Royal Caribbean so we knew how everything would be. The few things we were disappointed in was not anything RCI had failed on. The failings were on some, in fact quite a few, of our fellow Brits. The cruise consisted of mainly senior cruisers so the bad manners could not be blamed on the young!! They pushed in on the lifts! I thought we Brits knew how to queue??!! In the theatre they couldn't wait for the artists to finish their act before rushing out!! Where were the buses they were rushing to catch?? The dining room was the other place that they (the Brits) let themselves down. We were first sitting and the dress code for dining room is no shorts. We like the dining room as we like to dress for the occasion. There were a few people around us who either did not see, or could not read the notice about the dress code. One table in particular first sitting, was empty most nights then on the formal nights two men (you couldn't call them gentlemen) arrived in long shorts, the kind that only look good on small boys, scruffy t shirts and hats!!! I wonder why they only graced us with their presence on formal nights and very poorly dressed!! I was very disappointed that the staff did nothing about this even when it was pointed out to them!! That is the end of my moans. We didn't let it spoil our cruise, the whole cruise lived up to RC standards. Cabin staff dining staff and bar staff all lived up to our expectations. Excursions were well run and thoroughly enjoyable. So we would certainly cruise with RC again. In fact we have put a deposit down on another one, we just have to decide where to go. Read Less
Sail Date September 2013
We were taking our daughter for her first Mediterranean cruise and joining two British couples for this much anticipated cruise. The ports were for the most part good...Cadiz was a waste and Barcelona was insanely crowded for mid ... Read More
We were taking our daughter for her first Mediterranean cruise and joining two British couples for this much anticipated cruise. The ports were for the most part good...Cadiz was a waste and Barcelona was insanely crowded for mid September. The food in the dining room was substandard. We were told several times that Royal Caribbean had spent 13 million dollars on a new menu. They should have left the menu alone. This was our 20th cruise with RC and by far the worst for the food. We only went to four of the shows and only one was good. We have seen the same acts time after time. Apparently they have trouble getting new entertainers. The Royal Caribbean singers and dancers are talented but the shows are virtually the same from cruise to cruise. There are two jacuzzis in the Solarium and every evening one of them was closed. There was a teapot in the room but you could not make coffee; it must be ordered from room service. The ship was clean and well maintained and the captain was terrific. The cruise director's staff for the most part were very good. This is our second time on Adventure of the Seas and a few things need work. The miniature golf course was not in good shape and greens need to be replaced. We never found the diamond lounge and the reception for Crown and Anchor members is a waste of time. There was a sewage smell at one end of the ship the entire cruise. There are additional charges for most everything including ice cream which can be had at dinner for free. We love cruising but are looking at alternative cruise lines for future cruising. Read Less
Sail Date September 2013
We took our third Mediterranean cruise in as many years in August with Royal Carribean, having been previously with Princess and Cunard. Good things first - the staff were pretty good, checking in and disembarking at Southampton was very ... Read More
We took our third Mediterranean cruise in as many years in August with Royal Carribean, having been previously with Princess and Cunard. Good things first - the staff were pretty good, checking in and disembarking at Southampton was very efficient and, errr, now I'm struggling. Oh wait, the breakfast buffet was quite nice too. And the cabins were clean. I'm afraid there's quite a long list of what was bad: 1. In Villefranche, we queued for 4 hours and failed to get off the ship. The tendering operation was a shambles. The cruise line largely blamed the French authorities but that was a cop-out - we were waiting on the promenade deck and we saw tenders sitting alongside for 30 minutes at a time completely empty, whilst the staff messed around trying to give priority to people that had booked excursions but hadn't shown up on time. We also heard later from people that had got off that there were loads of people jumping the queues - there's little point having people go to collect a ticket to determine which batch they can disembark in if you're not going to do anything about people just barging in. We eventually got a bottle of horrid wine as compensation for having the whole day ruined. Not good enough. 2. The food in the restaurant in the evenings was really poor and got steadily worse as the cruise went on. There were 3 soups on the menu every night and far too many vegetarian options. By the last evening one of the main offerings was "vegetarian chicken" or "quorn" as it is better known. Unbelievable. We ended up going to the burger joint (for which there was a cover charge) or the buffet area for dinner, on the basis that at least there would be something that would take your fancy. 3. The kids on the ship (which was apparently about half of the total passengers) were allowed to completely run riot. You couldn't use a stairwell without there being a bunch of morose teenagers sitting in your way or a gang of younger children running up and down. There were lots of children on the Princess cruise we went on two years ago but they were chaperoned at all times whereas Royal Carribean just washed their hands of them, it seemed. There were shuffleboard games available on the Promenade deck and we observed gangs of teenagers smashing the pucks so hard into each other that they were flying overboard. When they got bored of this they threw the equipment to the floor and stalked off. There were a couple of security staff up by the kids pool on occasions but not nearly enough of them - Princess would have never permitted such behaviour. 4. The ship was too crowded, or there were not enough facilities, depending on which way you want to look at it. There were big queues for everything; only two pools to service over 2,500 passengers?!!! The kids pool was absolute mayhem all day every day - it looked like "children soup" The adult pool was tiny so even though the behaviour in there was generally civilised, it was literally standing room only. It was absolutely impossible on some days to get a lounger or even a seat outdoors anywhere on the ship. They had all been reserved by the "get up at 7am and put your towels down" brigade. There were rules posted about stuff being removed if a lounger remained unoccupied for 30 minutes but this was hardly ever enforced. 5. Whilst one can accept that Royal Carribean can't vet the people that sign up for their cruises, it has to be said that this one involved some appalling standards of behaviour on the part of the passengers. We heard that quite a number of passengers were offloaded at the various ports of call for one transgression or another and I can well believe it. This is certainly the most "dumbed down" cruise we've been on - Cunard had much higher standards and Princess weren't far behind either - I wouldn't book Royal Caribbean unless the "booze cruise" idea appeals to you, to be honest.   Read Less
Sail Date August 2013
My wife and I have just come back from an Italian Med cruise. We cruised on the 4th August 2013 from Southampton. Overall we had a fantastic time but there are some gripes which we never had on our only other previous cruise on the ... Read More
My wife and I have just come back from an Italian Med cruise. We cruised on the 4th August 2013 from Southampton. Overall we had a fantastic time but there are some gripes which we never had on our only other previous cruise on the 'Independence of the Seas' in 2011. First of all the bad points. Too many children allowed to run riot throughout the ship especially on the stairwells (Where were the security? Where were the parents?), sunbeds being saved all day and nothing being done about it, entertainment started well in the first week but ended on the final farewell show with a very cringe worthy juggling act by two pensioners from Russia which was an absolute farce. The cruise director, Drew Devine and his non descript side kick Rob McNally need to go. Drew just goes on and on and has no 'real' charisma it all feels forced and Rob well there is just nothing there other than one or two 'old' Jokes. Take a look at how Josef does it on Independence of the Seas and you will understand. The street parties and quest need someone with a personality and natural charisma to get people involved. The Cruise directors support staff were great. Royal Caribbean need to address these issues especially in respect of the beds and the kids. Have their standards dropped?? Now the good. The service across the ship was brilliant, the staff were brilliant, the ship was very clean, tidy and in good repair. How people can say that the ship is in dire need of a refurb is beyond me. Yes there may be some small areas but there is nothing really obvious. Johnny Rockets was good, Schooners bar with Ed on the piano and singing was great. The ports we visited were great apart from Genoa. I would suggest going to Portafino on an excursion at this port. Stateroom and balcony was very tidy and clean. Embarkation was easy. We had a great time and met lots of new fiends and will certainly cruise with Royal Caribbean again but the very high standards we experienced in all areas on the Independence were not met on this cruise. Read Less
Sail Date August 2013
Parking - We booked our parking in advance, the service was excellent, a smooth trip to the car park and back to the terminal with the children. Staff were helpful with the luggage. Check in - Quick and easy, we were through security, ... Read More
Parking - We booked our parking in advance, the service was excellent, a smooth trip to the car park and back to the terminal with the children. Staff were helpful with the luggage. Check in - Quick and easy, we were through security, check in and onboard within 20 minutes. Ship - Was a little tired but the ship is having a refurbishment early 2014. Food - Excellent choices in the Windjammer, beautiful food in the Main Dining Room and the service from the staff is second to none. Portofinos was an additional $20 per person and worth every penny, the equivalent to a 2 Michelin Star at sea in my opinion. Bars - There are bars to suit the needs of everyone, lively, quiet, child friendly. Swimming Pools - As with all hotels and cruise liners, there are not enough sunbeds for the passengers on board and staff did not enforce the half an hour sunbed rule which needs to be addressed. Activities for Children - Our daughter is 9 and there was more than enough for her to do, a lot of the facilities she was able to use on her own as and when she wanted. Activities for Toddlers - The only problem we encountered was the lack of activities for the under 3's. Our son had just turned 2 when we went on the cruise. There was a play room down in the deepest, darkest depths of deck 2 which was full of wonderful Fisher Price toys. There was also a playgroup member of staff in the morning to interact with the children. The swimming pools do not permit children in swim nappies, they must be toilet trained. I would not take a child under 3 onto this cruise knowing what I do now. The staff however made a real fuss of both children and could not be faulted. All in all a fantastic two week holiday and we will definitely be going again. Read Less
Sail Date August 2013
This was our first cruise, chosen because Royal Caribbean have a good reputation for family-friendly ships and because it fitted specific date requirements. We are a family of four (children aged 9 and 7). We live in Hampshire so found it ... Read More
This was our first cruise, chosen because Royal Caribbean have a good reputation for family-friendly ships and because it fitted specific date requirements. We are a family of four (children aged 9 and 7). We live in Hampshire so found it very easy and quick to arrive at the dock in Southampton, which was well signposted. Embarkation was easy, although we had to queue at check-in for 10 minutes or so. We went straight to the Windjammer for lunch with our hand luggage, and then out onto deck. We had interconnecting promenade cabins on deck 6, which were perfect, apart from a very high level of "white noise" at night, it sounded as though there was a dishwasher running close by. Our stateroom attendant Bruce was very friendly and helpful. The children loved the towel animals and we enjoyed going to the demonstration of how to make them on the last day. We settled in quickly and found it very easy to get our bearings around the ship as the signage at the elevators was very clear. Food - we had breakfast in the Windjammer every day and lunch there when we weren't in port, we were very impressed with the selection of food, friendliness of staff and lack of queues even at busy times. Evening meals were taken in the Mozart room on My Time, we didn't pre-book for the first day and would have had to wait 45 mins for a table so used the WJ that evening, but otherwise no problems. We also used the WJ for the 2nd and 3rd formal evenings to avoid having to dress up. The waiting staff in the Mozart were helpful, friendly and attentive, we had the same team every time. One of my few grumbles was the children's menu - the same every night and limited to much lower quality food than the adults menu, the children ended up eating off the adults menu instead quite often. We also ate in Portofino once and were impressed by the quality of the food. Leisure - the children LOVED Adventure Ocean and spent as much time as they could in there. During the day they towards the end of the cruise they tired of the pool and mini golf and would have liked a few more things to do. We noticed the pool attendants on Deck 11 trying unsuccessfully to police the reserved sunlounger situation, I'm not sure how they are supposed to enforce the 30 min rule to be honest. In the evenings we went to about 4 of the shows, including the ice one, and they were all good. We also took part in the quiz at 8 in the Schooner bar most nights which was good fun. Did not use the spa, gym, ice-rink or inline skating. We also liked exploring the quieter decks - deck 4, helipad, peek-a-boo bridge. If we didn't go to the theatre, most evenings found us in the Blue Moon bar, with fabulous views. Port visits (all with children). Gibraltar - did the Upper Rock Walking Tour, which was excellent, visiting St Michael's Cave and the wartime tunnels (lovely to be underground in such hot weather). Cannes - we went 15 mins early to get tender tickets and were off on the third tender of the day with no problems, although it was mayhem getting the tickets. We took the open air street train and explored by ourselves before returning on the tender mid afternoon, again, very little waiting and no problems. Rome - we took the Glories of Gladiators tour, which was really enjoyable and interesting, we also enjoyed an afternoon exploring by ourselves. Pisa - we took the early Pisa on your own tour, which was perfect, it was a very hot day, so good to be back on board by lunchtime. Genoa - we just got off and walked, we walked to the old port area (maybe a mile) and generally pottered and explored. Malaga - took a short tour to a viewpoint above the city and back around the town before having time to explore on our own. Beautiful city, would like to go back one day. Lisbon - took the Lisbon city tour, which encompassed the old town, a bus ride north to a park with great views, a visit to the waterfront to the Tower of Belem and a church before returning to ship. The most hair raising moment of the entire cruise was passing under the suspension bridge with all of 2.5m (according to the Captain's Q&A session) clearance. One more thing - my daughter cut her head open whilst on deck (bent down to pick something up, stood up and caught it on a rail), we checked the Cruise Compass and found that the medical room was open so went straight there. She was seen and treated immediately by the nurse and doctor, which was very reassuring. Disembarkation was very easy, we set our alarms for 6.15 (having put our bags out the night before), had breakfast, went to our rendezvous point at 7.15 and were directed straight off the ship, bags were immediately available and we were on the road by 7.30. All in all it was a great holiday. I had been quite worried that I wasn't going to enjoy it (we normally go camping!) but it was great and we will do it again one day. Took me three days back on land to stop feeling drunk from the motion though! Read Less
Sail Date July 2013
A family of three, 2 adults and our daugter who was 6 on holiday. Booked about 14months previously with a travel agent, which to be honest we wouldnt bother with again, as there was no benefit, (except a discount) and we had to pay months ... Read More
A family of three, 2 adults and our daugter who was 6 on holiday. Booked about 14months previously with a travel agent, which to be honest we wouldnt bother with again, as there was no benefit, (except a discount) and we had to pay months before we would have done if booking directly with RCI. Two cruises under our belts pre children with P&O. Switched to RCI as we felt they are geared more to family cruising. We love cruising from Southampton and again this didnt disappoint. check in was a breeze - park up, leave luggage by car and walk to check. We were pleasantly surprise by the speedy check-in for Gold Crown and Anchor members as we werent expecting this. Sailed on Independence last year so we had a vague idea of the layout and werent lost and had our bearings straight away. rooms ready just before 2 which was great. We haven't had the D1 balcony before (last years cruise a special anniversary and managed a JS!) but were surprised by the storage space (one of our worries if there was going to be enough we dont travel light!) We knew the ship is due a refurb and to be honest the room was a little tired but didnt detract from our holiday. thought towels were very fluffy. Our cabin attendant Ezra looked after us very well - especially all my daughters cuddly toys that managed to come along too! Our room always cleaned early which i like. Restaurants: Windjammer - this was much better than our experience on indy. seemed less busy and always found a table. we didnt eat here much - half our breakfasts were here and to be honest food as good if not better than the express breakfast in the main restaurant. MDR - chose a table of 10 as we like meeting others, it was a shame only 1 other couple ever turned up. we looked like billy no mates sometimes and has questioned whether to do fixed seating again. We chose early dining as we like our daughter to eat with us, and all around us were half empty tables. Food we thought was very good, and thought there was a lot of choice. Waiter pedro looked after us very well especially on my daughters birthday. Note we did book room service breakfast once when we were in Rome with an early start - pleased with the call to confirm we were awake and arrived bang on time. Daughter spent half the day at kids club and half with us by pool. adventure beach area a little disappointing and more patrols needed as often it was taken over by older kids Sea days was difficult to get a sun bed. someone needs to come up with an idea! Gym was well equipped and busy - it would have been nice for more control if children in the gym as despite the signs they were there - i have no issue with serious gym users, but in terms of the children when i was in there only half of them were serious. There were chargeable pilates classes and I would have done more of these due to the timings and schedule seemed not to sync with port days or early evening dinner sitting. The couple of shows we saw were good - but met some lovely people and tended to have a drink and a chat in the pub. Teens - yes there were a lot on board, to be expected in summer holidays. they are a fairly unusual breed if you are not used to them and do tend to walk in packs which can appear intimidating- but in reality I didnt really see any that were doing anything wrong. There is always a possibility that the second cruise with RCI might not have the wow factor, but this was not the case. The service was excellent and the ships crew across the board were friendly, welcoming and helpful. apart from our cabin I didnt notice specific areas that needed a refurb. PS couldnt believe the calmness of the bay of biscay, like a millpond it was. PPS pleased to see that bar prices included gratuities. Happy to have climbed to platinum and would happily rebook with RCI.   Read Less
Sail Date July 2013
This was only our second sailing with RCI although we have done several Med cruises from Southampton with other lines. The embarkation was the smoothest I have ever encountered, there were plenty of staff around to help and the queue was ... Read More
This was only our second sailing with RCI although we have done several Med cruises from Southampton with other lines. The embarkation was the smoothest I have ever encountered, there were plenty of staff around to help and the queue was non-existent, before we knew it we were boarding the ship. We were told our rooms would be ready at about 2pm so we grabbed a snack from the Windjammer and enjoyed a peaceful hour sat near the pool people watching. The announcement about the rooms being available came earlier than the predicted 2pm which was a nice surprise. We had originally booked a Grand suite as our teenage son was going to be sharing with us and I knew I would find an ordinary balcony stateroom too small but at the last minute his older sister decided to join us so they ended up with an inside stateroom along the corridor and all of a sudden my husband and I had the luxury of a Grand suite all to ourselves! Our cabin was obviously very spacious although the balcony was much smaller than is offered with a GS on IOS. However I liked the fact that it was enclosed and private even though it was smaller although having one sunbed did seem a bit odd. Unfortunately, although our stateroom was clean it was obviously in need of a refurb. One of the sinks leaked badly in to the cupboard underneath, something I didn't discover until my toiletries were all soaked. On closer inspection I realised that the back of the cupboard was quite rotten so it had obviously been a problem for a while. The air-conditioning in the bathroom also leaked so we had to keep towels on the floor to prevent accidental slips. The kettle would only work if we stood there holding the button in all the time and opening and closing the drawers required muscles of steel and was so noisy I felt sorry for anyone underneath us. On top of this the soft furnishings and headboard were badly stained and there were a few nicks out of the furniture. The inside stateroom occupied by my children was actually in a much better state of repair but I was surprised to see that although they had a kettle they had no coffee maker or instant coffee and the only toiletries they had were a cheap, thin bar of soap and a shampoo/showergel combination. Our room steward was not very attentive. I think we are easy to look after guests, we are tidy and put everything away and usually make no requests. However by the third day I had to ask for teabags, to have the menu sheets changed in the folder, to have the glasses replaced that we had used on the first day etc. I think that these are basic roles and I should not have had to go and find him to ask for them, he never even actually introduced himself. The room steward for my children however was an absolute star, friendly and helpful as well as being extremely efficient. We had opted for My time dining and asked for a table for 4 which was always accommodated. We had the same staff every night, Whyte and Nareem who were brilliant. They remembered everyones preferences and were friendly without being over the top. Most of the food we had was very nice although I felt there was sometimes too much shellfish on the menu and it was a bit repetitive. On two occasions we had problems with our meal (cold meatballs and extremely undercooked chicken) and Nareem was there as soon as he spotted that we weren't enjoying our meals. We took our other meals in the Windjammer where we found there was a good selection of food although some of it could have done with being hotter. The staff were always friendly and helpful and would help you look for a seat if needed. I really don't think there is enough seating here for the size of the ship and breakfast on port days and lunch on seadays could get very hectic. We found the Cruise Director, Clo, and her staff very friendly and approachable. We enjoy quizzes and loved the fact that there were several every day and the staff were always happy to engage with their audience and made a good atmosphere. We enjoy going to the theatre in the evenings and on the whole we enjoyed most of the performances. We thought the iceshow was great too and we were surprised to find that we quite enjoyed watching the gameshows as well even though I wouldn't have said they were my thing! We found the evening flowed really well and there was always something we wanted to do. We are not drinkers and don't enjoy spending our evening just sat in a bar so we found that there was always something to entertain us on the Adventure. There were several musical combos on board including one duo where the guy was brilliant and the girl had the worst diction and stage presence that I have ever come across! My son and daughter both had a go at the rock climbing and the inline skating. As we had found on the IOS the staff were all chatty and helpful and were not at all condescending and really wanted to make sure people enjoyed their activities. The ice-skating times were very restrictive and were only available towards the end of the cruise and in the evenings which tended to coincide with meal times. My son tried one session but although he can skate well he said it was rowdy and there were people skating in opposite directions and he thought it was getting dangerous on such a small rink so didn't go again. The biggest disappointment on the cruise was actually the ports. I had chosen the itinerary as there were several ports that I hadn't been to before and it also included Barcelona which was on my bucket list. Another port that caught my eye was Malaga as I knew RCI ran excursions to Alhambra palace which I was desperate to see. However most of the ports were industrial and a long way from the towns, this is pretty inevitable but at $15 each for a shuttle bus this could get quite expensive. Luckily we had researched most ports and knew of local buses and shuttles that ran and were much cheaper but I feel that the cruise company almost hide this information for every port except Barcelona. We took a Gaudi tour in Barcelona which we really enjoyed although I felt it was a bit rushed. The problem with the rest of the ports was that they were all very similar, there was not much to do locally without taking excursions and since they all have the same history they have pretty much the same architecture and town layout as each other. Usually our itineraries have included an Italian port or maybe La Rochelle or Guernsey so there is more diversity than was available on this trip. When I studied the excursions from Malaga I found that they were not running one to Alhambra as the ship wasn't docked long enough, I was very disappointed when I found this out. Although I have mentioned that I felt our stateroom was rather tired I felt that the majority of ship looked in excellent condition and was always spotlessly clean. The only obvious signs of wear were on the seats in the Schooner and the Imperial lounge which were sometimes a little fragile! The lower deck area around the pool seemed to get very busy and the pool attendants did not do a very good job of policing their chair-hogging rule. One day we were on our sunbeds at 9am on a seaday. The 4 beds in front of us had towels and a few possessions on them already. Throughout the day we swapped and changed our beds with our children whilst we were in the pool or they were grabbing a meal etc. Over the course of the next 6 hours no-one came near the beds and only a little while later did we actually see the pool attendant decide to move the peoples stuff. The top deck usually had sunbeds available although it was quite breezy up there on some days. Overall we enjoyed our time on Adventure. I think she is the perfect size of ship for us and I really hope to sail on her again after she had been through dry-dock but I feel that RCI have left the refurb a little late and for the money that I spent on our Staterooms I feel that I should have had a better standard of accommodation.   Read Less
Sail Date July 2013
The ship - the Adventure is starting to show her age some at this point but is well maintained. We saw people cleaning constantly and feel the staff did a great job in this area. The Ports - we enjoyed all the ports. We loved Malaga! It ... Read More
The ship - the Adventure is starting to show her age some at this point but is well maintained. We saw people cleaning constantly and feel the staff did a great job in this area. The Ports - we enjoyed all the ports. We loved Malaga! It was beautiful, not too crazy with us tourists, and our tapas tour was great. We did ship tours in every port but Cannes and were happy with them for the most part. The staff - the staff was great. Everyone was very helpful, courteous, and happy to help. The children on this cruise were a bit of an issue at times. It got to the point where security was stationed near stairways and also roaming to keep everything in order. We saw these extra security people sometimes as early as 6pm. I give RCCL credit for attempting to keep the kids out of trouble. The Food - this was the most disappointing variety of food I have ever had on a cruise. Of course I did find stuff to eat on the ship, but the main dining room choices were disappointing. The cruise was billed as an Italian Med Cruise, but we didn't even have an Italian themed night for the dining room. We have done other European cruises and the food choices have always included food from the countries visited, but not this one. Even our British table mates were surprised by the lack of choices. They also wanted something more than what they could get at home. Overall we did enjoy the cruise and will be sailing with RCCL again. Read Less
Sail Date July 2013
Having spent hours scouring Cruise Critic for tips & hints prior to our first cruise, heres our post cruise contribution no apologies for the length as Ive tried to cover everything Id want to know as a cruise newbie! Embarkation ... Read More
Having spent hours scouring Cruise Critic for tips & hints prior to our first cruise, heres our post cruise contribution no apologies for the length as Ive tried to cover everything Id want to know as a cruise newbie! Embarkation (Southampton) The whole process was quick, painless & well-rehearsed. Arrived at ABP at 1030 hrs and were directed where to park. Our suitcases were loaded into a van right by the car and we then walked the short distance to the terminal. Here we checked in and were given our sea passes, through passport control, hand luggage x-rayed and then onto the ship  all very slick and so much easier than flying! (We took too much hand luggage  you really dont need to!) By 11.30 hrs we were in the Windjammer on Deck 11 having lunch, first drink in hand! We then took the opportunity to look round the ship and get our bearings before the announcement at 13.45 hrs that all rooms were ready  15 mins ahead of schedule. Our suitcases arrived at 16.25 hrs which we were really impressed with. Muster Drill Mandatory muster drill was at 15.45 hrs the bar staff on deck were encouraging people to proceed to designated stations well ahead of the alarm, so it didnt feel very realistic to us. I guess the main point was ensuring people knew where they had to go  just in case. Once there, our names were checked off and the crew demonstrated how to put on a life jacket. All quite painless, but of course there were some stragglers we had to wait for before being dismissed. Sail away was at 16.45 hrs amidst a sounding of horns with P&Os Arcadia! Adventure of the Seas What a fabulous ship! We can quite understand why some people fall in love with her and come back time after time. She was the perfect size  big enough to have plenty of amenities but compact enough to get round easily. She was spotlessly clean and kept in very good condition wear`n tear was certainly not an issue to us. When she goes into dry dock next year for 10 days theyre spending $50million on refurb! (Captains Corner talk was very interesting!) Rooms We had 2 inside cabins (children 18 & 15) on Deck 9 which were surprisingly spacious. Loads of cupboard space and no need for over-the-door pocket toiletry holders! Magnets were a good idea  we wrote out meal & excursions times and stuck them to the wall for the kids so they always knew when to be ready. Downside was not having any indication of daylight  yes a TV channel had a camera of the front of the ship, but it alternated with a map of the cruise, so not really an option to have that on all night. Turn down service was good each evening and it was great to have a fresh ice bucket twice daily. There were 2 days where they offered a bag of laundry for $25  we didnt use this, but would consider in future and take less clothes! The attendants were great  especially Philip who waited until 12.30 pm each day to clean our childrens room  giving our son to recover from the long nights! Towel animals are done every other night. Pool Towels We signed them out on Day 1, then swapped them at the end of each day  easier than swiping in and out all the time  and turned them in on the last day. Dining Breakfast We tried the MDR once for a la carte and once for express buffet (on sea days) but we preferred the Windjammer and always headed to the back of the ship where it was less busy and had a good view. If youre on the drinks package, start the day with a Mimosa or Bellini! Look out for the Chocolate Breakfast  check the MDR menus before going to bed! Lunch  Windjammer had excellent choice and we never failed to get a table. Taking food out (eg to pool decks or rooms) was never an issue. On sea days there were sometimes BBQs by the main pool, or food on the Promenade deck  although not well advertised in advance. Dinner - We booked My Time Dining on the advice of our Travel Agent. On hindsight, fixed late dining would have suited us better. We booked the Main Dining Room for the whole holiday on the first day and they tried to put us with the same wait staff each night. Timings were generally geared to the two main seatings  the latest we could get was 18.15 or 20.15  but they would hold the table for 45 mins from the earliest slot eg 17.45 until 18.30 hrs. Our waiters Rayland & Stacian were superb as was our drinks waiter Rony  we ll never forget them! Rony brought us a different Shooter of the day each night and also made the Oreo Cookie Milkshake for our daughter  both things we d seen on this forum but were not advertised on board. Ask and they will oblige! Tip - pre book a MTD time for the first night  it was exceptionally busy and all the late slots in the MDR had gone so enjoying sail away was cut short. 24 hrs- Caf Promenade is the place for tea, coffee, hot chocolate, water and pizza, sandwiches, cakes & cookies. Ham & cheese croissants became a late night staple! We visited here prior to each trip to fill our water bottles (use glasses to fill as not allowed to fill straight from machine). Bars Loved the different ambiance of them all  Duck & Dog British Pub, Sophistication of Champagne Bar, Jesters Nightclub (best place to get served promptly at 22.00 hrs!), Sports Bar, Blue Moon lounge, Crows Nest, Imperial Lounge, Pool Bars, Schooner bars nautical theme, casino bar truly something for everyone! Drinks Package After much deliberation we took the plunge and booked the Ultimate Package. Did we get our monies worth? Yes! Did it encourage us to drink more than we might have done? Yes! Did it encourage us to try new things? Yes! Would we do it again? Maybe! We have a philosophy of work hard, play hard but this isnt good for our health!! Average day for me was as follows: Bellini with breakfast, mid morning Cocktail of day, wine at lunch, mid afternoon drink, pre-dinner drink, 2 x wine with dinner, shooter , couple of nightcaps. With drinks averaging $8 (advertised prices included gratuities), its easy to get your moneys worth at this level  and with steady drinking we were never drunk or hungover! Hubby got additional use out of his package too We never experienced poor service due to having the package we get the impression it was very common on this trip. Without the package, there are opportunities for free drinks eg Captains cocktail party & Art Auctions! Murder Mystery This was only really worth the money it if you havent booked the drinks package as the wine & champagne was flowing! We expected more Agatha Christie but this was quite slap stick. Good night but wouldnt do it again. Meet n Mingle Unfortunately there was a mix up and not everyone got invitations for Day 2. They put on another one on Day 5 but as a result we didnt get to meet everyone sadly. Non alcoholic drink on arrival, canaps and a raffle nice touch by RCI. Staff The biggest asset! They were all so friendly, happy and eager to please! We gave additional cash gratuities to some and they looked genuinely shocked! There was no hint of expectation at all. It was really nice that they called us by name too! Shows We were disappointed with the production shows wed expected west end type shows, not ships own offerings. Abba tribute band was good, as were the comedians, but its a shame there were only 2 of these, and both in the first few days. Love and Marriage and the Quest were both entertaining. (Billed as recommended for adults but too many youngsters in there). Ice show was good but not quite as good as our expectations! 18-25s We were concerned about activities (or lack of) for our 18 year old son. The first couple of nights they did organised Meet `n Mingle sessions for this age group in Jesters nightclub. After that they met up and did their own thing  we hardly saw him all holiday! 15  17s Our daughter went to Optrix teen club on the first night and made some good friends  again we hardly saw her! We liked the 1am curfew, but they found ways round it by going to each others rooms! We never had any concerns about where she was or who she was with they all seemed sensible teens and it was a safe and secure environment - the security staff were prominent and really nice. We took cheap PAYG phones for them to text us to keep in touch signal was a bit hit and miss though. Leaving post it notes for each other worked the best. Internet We didnt bother whilst on board as it was very expensive. 1.99 per day with O2 when ashore was plenty for us to check emails, use the internet etc. Trips We opted for RCIs own trips for the most part which were very well organised turn up at Lyric Theatre, collect a sticker and take a seat until your tour is called. Gibraltar Walking Tour  good trip with prebooked cable car tickets, top of the rock, apes, St Michaels cave & siege tunnels. We opted to stay in Gib for shopping and make our own way back to the ship which was very easy. Cannes  booking a tour for this stop was worthwhile due to the tendering process  we were off the ship at 08.15 whereas others we spoke to without prebooked trips had to wait until the afternoon. Tour itself was a bit of a route march in the heat and not as good as Gib. Rome on your own Train  45 min air conditioned ride to Rome was a good choice. We got the metro to the Colosseum but opted not to go in (long queues even by the Forum, too hot and time pressured), did the Trevi fountain, Pantheon, Castle St Angelo and then had prebooked Vatican tickets for 13.00 hrs. Exit the Vatican at the right hand door from the Sistine Chapel (group exit!) and you can get straight into St Peters without queuing separately. Pisa  great trip with tower tickets included. Would have liked to have spent longer there though! Genoa  did our own thing. Easy to walk off ship and there is a city bus tour. Malaga tapas tour  the best trip we did but probably due to the food and wine!! Lisbon city tour  a lot of `on the bus, off the bus but we did see quite a bit. With hindsight the city bus would probably have been just as good and cheaper. Dress The 3 formal nights were great  especially the first one with free champagne at the Captains cocktail party on the promenade! Also a chance for a photo with the Captain. It was great to see so many people dressed up and really didnt matter that half the ship was in shorts and t-shirts! It really is a case of each to their own and you fit in no matter what you wear! Disappointment for us was only one smart casual night  and even then the Cruise Compass published it incorrectly as casual! Smart jeans and a top is fine in the MDR on casual nights. Photo Package We pre-purchased on line and it was worth every penny as we came away with 120 photos and a CD individual photos were $20 to buy! Photographers were friendly and never pushy. View your photos every day or two and they store them for you behind the counter ready for collection on the last night. We never had to prove we had the package again, all well organised. Spending Limit for Kids We asked Guest Relations to place a limit on our childrens Sea Passes  i.e. we authorised a set limit for the first week, then increased it for the second week. This worked really well and we could also view all their transactions on our TV screen! No problem with our 18 year old drinking alcohol as sailing out of the UK. Sunbeds On sea days these were at a premium and generally were taken by 09.30. We did see staff put stickers on chairs to monitor the 30 minute rule. The sides of Deck 4 and the Helipad were favourites for some quiet space! Peek-a-Boo bridge on Deck 4 is also worth a look. Behind Scenes Tour This was available for 15 people only on the final sea day at a cost of $150!! Would have loved to have done this  but how can RCI justify this cost?!! Weve done similar tours for free on previous holidays. Overheard someone talking about it and it did sound really good. Disembarkation We opted not to put our cases out at 23.00 hrs the night before. Carrying them off ourselves was no hassle and meant we could have a leisurely breakfast and leave when we wanted instead of meeting at a set location at a set time. Im sure that would have worked equally well given RCIs general organisation. One side effect following disembarkation  for the first 24 hrs we suffered from a swaying motion  very weird and difficult to concentrate on anything! Summary Hopefully this review will help some other cruise newbies! More than happy to answer any questions or clarify any points. Would we cruise again with RCI? Yes! Picked up next years brocheurs today!!   Read Less
Sail Date July 2013
We went on this 14-nights cruise on Adventure of the seas since it fit very well with our daughters school holiday and ours. Positive: - The food in the main dining room was probably the best I've experienced on any of the cruises ... Read More
We went on this 14-nights cruise on Adventure of the seas since it fit very well with our daughters school holiday and ours. Positive: - The food in the main dining room was probably the best I've experienced on any of the cruises - The service in the main dining room was impeccable and very friendly - Suite attendant was fantastic, our daughter had tears in the eyes when we left because she liked him so much. (She is 8) - Concierge lounge service was great. - All personnel where very friendly and serviceminded - Portofino restaurant food and service also really good. Improvement areas: - Ship is starting to get to the point where it needs a facelift, you see some signs of the age. - Lost a piece of luggage on the way home that was taken by another passenger since the thoroughly fastened luggage tags were ripped off.(Got it back 2 days later) - Shore excursion are a rip off. Would never use them. Sort your own. - The very weak Air-con in the gym made training harder than needed. Will never use cruise.co.uk ever again. Did not warn me that the free parking that RCCL promised would have needed to be booked 8 months ahead of the cruise. (Yes it was on page 6 of the cruise contract) but they could have mentioned it. They continued to send marketing on mobile, post and e-mail despite myself expressing a clear wish for them to stop. Had to threaten with legal action to get them to stop. They didn't respect the OBC promised at the time of the booking and started arguing about it afterwards. This costed an extra 97 in parking and quite some irritation. I can also mention that RCCL didn't help out anything despite us being frequent guest with them. Will use Cruises-n-more or smartcruiser in the future for bookings as I have done before. Read Less
Sail Date July 2013
Adventure of the Seas Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.2
Dining 4.0 4.0
Entertainment 5.0 3.8
Public Rooms 5.0 4.3
Fitness Recreation 5.0 4.1
Family 5.0 4.1
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.9
Enrichment 1.0 3.6
Service 4.0 4.4
Value For Money 4.0 3.9
Rates 4.0 4.0

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