Sail Date: December 2018
Loved everything. Service was great especially our room steward and main dining room. Some bar staff not as friendly but speed of service was okay. Not a big fan of windjammer but loved the dining room and pizza qt cafe promonade. ... Read More
Loved everything. Service was great especially our room steward and main dining room. Some bar staff not as friendly but speed of service was okay. Not a big fan of windjammer but loved the dining room and pizza qt cafe promonade. Plenty of dining options to find something to taste. Entertainment directors could have been more entertaining. Missed a sailaway party and more bands live music on the pool deck. Shows were of a high standard. Overall staff were amazing and it was a holiday of a lifetime. The embarking disembarking was speedy. Some wait for tender boats but not too bad. Islands were all wonderful and snorking was the best we have experienced. Mystery island was the family favourite. Touch touch train on noumea is highly recommended. Isle of pines 2 hour sighseeing train (booked on island) was also recommended. Dont miss the cave it was a highlight. Will be cruising with royal caribbean again! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2018
This was a sensational cruise The embarkation was swift and straight to Windjammers ( great quality) Cabin better than expected ( Hanging area loaded with hangers Ship was well run you could feel the vibe and the unity that this ... Read More
This was a sensational cruise The embarkation was swift and straight to Windjammers ( great quality) Cabin better than expected ( Hanging area loaded with hangers Ship was well run you could feel the vibe and the unity that this was a committed team . The ship was always being cleaned all we need to do it Coach the passengers to wash their hands !! The wait staff in the MDR and Windjammers was amazing and very attentive The Head Waiters ( especially Andreea and Erol ) we’re so supportive of there staff and us as passengers I also noted that a vast number of wait staff went out of there way to build rapport with the passengers, not seen much of this activity in the past voyages we have done . Even saw the Big Indian Restaurant Manager sweeping and collecting plates whilst in duty .... I complimented him for having created such a wonderful team He was so genuine in his attitude and work ethic His team rallied constantly ( wish I had taken his name ) The Australian INX Show was brilliant one of the Best we have ever seen at Sea excellent work RCI The Magician was also good however the RCI singers were average and I did not enjoy their productions ( even struggled with Xmas Carols ) The ship was also very respectful of Xmas .... did a great Ship in this politically correct world we live in Santa visited the ship and the kids !! The crew in the specialty dinner restaurants were not up to scratch Giovanni’s were under staffed and that Head Waiter was NOt a team player and the unity was NOT evident plus our medium rare steaks we both well done If our waitress was ever on the floor we would have sent back BUt we were too full to bother ( 5/10 ) The tender service was well organised and worked a treat The Explorer was smart enough to have a vast number of tenders down to accomthe passenger flow ! One of the Best cruises we have ever done Be proud RCI and Explorer Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2018
We chose this cruise for a family Christmas cruise because we believed there would be lots to do for the kids. Our only criticism of the children's activities are that a couple of the attendants had so little interest in what they were ... Read More
We chose this cruise for a family Christmas cruise because we believed there would be lots to do for the kids. Our only criticism of the children's activities are that a couple of the attendants had so little interest in what they were doing it didn't make it enjoyable for the children. Also children were vetted according to height for the wave pool which resulted in shorter older children missing out on using that facility in favour of younger children who may have been taller. Our seven year old grandson was only just short of the height restrictions but 5 and 6 year old taller children who were not so adept at sport were able to use that facility. Seemed a strange way of vetting use. We had just come off a 26 day cruise with another cruiseline (with only 900 passengers) where we were so disappointed to miss 3 shore stops because that cruise line believed it was not safe to tender. This Royal Caribbean cruise though with about 4500 passengers with such a well trained tender staff had no problem getting all passengers off in a very timely manner, way quicker than our previous cruise and on ports which would have been considered unsafe on the other cruise. This made us realise how untrained the other cruises staff were with tendering processes. Well done Royal Caribbean and Explorer of the Seas. The food at speciality restuarant Izumu was brilliant with the food in the main dining room being of good quality. Service at both restaurants was excellant with the wait staff being very attentive and knowledgeable on the menu. We didnt like the way parents allowed their children to handle food in the buffet restaurant and only ate there if in a hurry. That should be stopped as there was gastro onboard however none of our party caught it. Overall we would definitely go on this ship again even without the grandchildren. There was so much to do with the entertainment in the evening being very good. With so many passengers we had been expecting huge delays for boarding, disembarkation and tendering but did not find this at all. This had to be one of the most well organised cruises we have been on. Thank you Royal Caribbean and Explorer of the Seas. A great experience. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
The ship was fabulously decorated and the staff and crew went way above to create a memorable experience. The atmosphere with most of the passengers dressing up was certainly festive. Lots decorated the cabins and the cabin doors. Food ... Read More
The ship was fabulously decorated and the staff and crew went way above to create a memorable experience. The atmosphere with most of the passengers dressing up was certainly festive. Lots decorated the cabins and the cabin doors. Food delicious. Cafe Promenade needs updating. One negative experience was the massively expensive Lunch at La Meridian on Isle of Pines was terrible and the excursions manager said no one had ever complained before and it was their most popular excursion. Don’t fall for it, the food was disgusting. They said they would let head office know. There were lots of extra activities for the kids (1700 onboard) but a little limited for adults. Shows were great. Because of the number of children the adults pool was not crowded, with plenty of deck chairs available. The screen in the theatre and the projector desperately needs updating. Although the ship was full the staff handled the numbers very well. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2018
This was my third cruise with my family (wife and 8 year old daughter). My thoughts are that overall, Explorer provides a solid cruise experience. While some of the bells and whistles are absent, all of us had a great holiday. The ... Read More
This was my third cruise with my family (wife and 8 year old daughter). My thoughts are that overall, Explorer provides a solid cruise experience. While some of the bells and whistles are absent, all of us had a great holiday. The dining experiences in particular, were consistently of a high quality. On realising that I liked Indian food, my waiter at the Sapphire dining room ordered me an Indian main every night, off the menu. Little touches like this were consistent. Having tried all the specialty dining with the 3 night package, I think Giovanni's table probably had the best experience but my daughter thought Sapphire was where it was at. The entertainment staff did well too. Trivia, live music and poolside activities provided us plenty to do. We did find that trivia was very popular and we arrived about 15 minutes prior to get a seat. Evening entertainment showed signs of brilliance with excellent singers, dancers and a booked out ice-skating show. Some of the tribute bands were less great though. One caveat - Adventure Ocean was packed this cruise. We had to arrive 15 minutes before opening to get a space. I haven't had that experience on Ovation or Carnival Spirit, despite school holidays. The Christmas experience was well done. There was a parade, Santa Claus, gifts for the kids and plenty of activities throughout the day. My wife and daughter participated in the choir, which they really enjoyed. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2018
Had heard n read reviews about Royal Caribbean cruises.was our first time on a cruise. The embarkation was very smooth with no hassle n on upon the ship the staffs guided us through the allocated entries. The cabin was very clean and ... Read More
Had heard n read reviews about Royal Caribbean cruises.was our first time on a cruise. The embarkation was very smooth with no hassle n on upon the ship the staffs guided us through the allocated entries. The cabin was very clean and well kept.the dining staff were very helpful n there were lots of choices of food. The entertainment was great as we experienced a variety of performance . Lots of activities for all ages .The service provided by most staff were excellent.though the swimming pool area was taken by the same people everyday n not every one got the opportunity to enjoy the pool. The on shore excursions especially city n country side ride was a bit too costly as not much was provided on this trip.the staffs at the stopover place for refreshments were very rude n unfriendly. The pastry was ridiculous.did not get to see much on the noumea excursion.waste of time Read Less
Sail Date: December 2018
We have been on a number of Royal Carribean cruises and wanted to experience the bigger ship. We were very disappointed with a number of issues. The food in the main diningroom (dinner) was mediocre compared to previous cruises. The buffet ... Read More
We have been on a number of Royal Carribean cruises and wanted to experience the bigger ship. We were very disappointed with a number of issues. The food in the main diningroom (dinner) was mediocre compared to previous cruises. The buffet food in the Windjammer however was very good. The entertainment in the theatre was very good for five of the ten evenings. The other evenings consisted of entertainment by the ship’s dance company (mediocre) or the screening of two movies, both of which had run on the high street recently. The cruise director was extremely full of himself and considered himself to be one of the main performers. This was very different from the previous RCL cruises that we had been on. The ship is in serious need of a revamp. One just has to look at the state of some of the dining seats in the Windjammer to realise this. Music in the bars, lounges was virtually non-existent with the exception of the Schooner where the pianist who usually performed from 9pm was very good. Overall, we were left with a feeling of being ripped off. A bottle of Australian shiraz at the table cost more than four times what exactly the same bottle costs at Dan Murpheys! We will probably not be cruising on Royal Carribean again despite this having been our sixth cruise with them. I left this same review on their website upon our return to Sydney ather the 18th December 2018 but to date have not received any response Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2018
We decided to book this cruise at the last minute, we were lucky to get a cabin! We booked a balcony room and we were given a Junior suite which was a lovely surprise. We really loved the suite it was spacious and the walk in wardrobe was ... Read More
We decided to book this cruise at the last minute, we were lucky to get a cabin! We booked a balcony room and we were given a Junior suite which was a lovely surprise. We really loved the suite it was spacious and the walk in wardrobe was excellent, and we got priority boarding as well which was also a great treat. We had sunny weather for the entire trip, my favorite stops were Mystery island, Isle of pines and Port Vila. We got glass bottom canoes on mystery island and went snorkeling, it was a lovely day. We went on the Turtle bay tour in Isle of pines, we got to see some turtles and jump in the water with them! In Port Vila we went on the Zego wave riders, this was great fun! Noumea was ok, we visited the aquarium which was very interesting, but unfortunately Lemon beach was closed the day we visited so we couldn't go swimming there. Make sure to take water socks with you if you visit the islands, we saw many people with painful injuries to their feet from stepping on sharp coral etc. We ate at all the specialty restaurants on board, our favourites were Giovannis table and chops grill. The service was great at all the restaurants. The ship is looking a bit tired in some places, but it's to be expected with its age, from talking to guests who have been on the other newer bigger ships in the royal Caribbean fleet, it is far less crowded and still has plenty of entertainment for the whole family. There were many shows on the ship, I loved the ice skating show and the guest entertainers. But the shows put on by the ship entertainers were pretty underwhelming. They looked dated and were aimed at an older demographic than most of the passengers on the ship. I went to the spa to get my nails done on the second to last day at sea, I didn't really enjoy it as there was constant pressure to buy more and it made me feel very uncomfortable. All in all we had a great holiday! Would definitely reccomend this cruise! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
Great ship, entertainment was okay but not amazing . Loved the poolside movies and the ice show was beautiful. I would have liked to have a cruise compass before booking, we booked the 6pm dining room sitting but with the 6pm ... Read More
Great ship, entertainment was okay but not amazing . Loved the poolside movies and the ice show was beautiful. I would have liked to have a cruise compass before booking, we booked the 6pm dining room sitting but with the 6pm movies, 7pm or 9 pm shows you miss something. Disappointed with the sapphire restaurant options(lots of seafood, but if you don't eat seafood the options are limited), dinner length was 1 1/2 hours, they were better In the wind jammer. I was Disappointed that there was no key lime pie on the ship but there were heaps of dessert options in the windjammer... Curtis, crepes, many different cakes including sugar free options and fresh fruit galore. The only specially restaurant we went to was johnny rockets, not slot of people in the which was good but having never been there it was okay but you could make a burger in the windjammer all day long Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
We did a day sampler on Explorer and thought we would go longer to give it a try. We were in Grande suite Deck 10 cabin 1548, the bath is too deep to get into for a shower if you have mobility issues. The cabin is underneath Solarium/ ... Read More
We did a day sampler on Explorer and thought we would go longer to give it a try. We were in Grande suite Deck 10 cabin 1548, the bath is too deep to get into for a shower if you have mobility issues. The cabin is underneath Solarium/ Spa area we could hear trolleys of towels? being moved, but it wasn't annoying. We are very close to lifts but restaurants were at other end of ship unfortunately. We were able to go to concierge Lounge, but no toilet facility's are near by unless you go to deck 11 next to Choppes Grille. I found the Victoria Secrets spray more expensive than Radiance of the seas and personnel in shop were snobs and didn't want to help unless you were buying expensive perfume. Food in MTD was lovely and proportioned, Choppes Grill was good and Giovannis was just beautiful. We would go on Explorer again, but be a bit more careful when choosing a room. Read Less
Explorer of the Seas Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.3
Dining 4.0 4.0
Entertainment 5.0 4.0
Public Rooms 4.0 4.3
Fitness Recreation 5.0 4.2
Family 5.0 4.2
Shore Excursion 3.0 3.8
Enrichment 4.0 3.5
Service 4.0 4.4
Value For Money 5.0 3.9
Rates 4.0 4.1

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