Sail Date: January 2005
This is our 9th RCCL cruise and 2nd on one of the Mega ships-per our 13 year old daughter's request for the rock climbing wall and ice rink. We arrived a day early to spend extra time in old San Juan. Unfortunately,the next day was ... Read More
This is our 9th RCCL cruise and 2nd on one of the Mega ships-per our 13 year old daughter's request for the rock climbing wall and ice rink. We arrived a day early to spend extra time in old San Juan. Unfortunately,the next day was the governor's inauguration--and the whole city was shut down for parties. Our original hotel pick-up time of 1:30 pm was changed that morning (at 9:00am) to 10:30am because of the traffic problem. We arrived at the ship's terminal, but they were not prepared for any early arrivals (there were hundreds) so we waited for several hours in the terminal before we could board. Once we boarded we still couldn't get to our room for 2 more hours. I realize they needed time to prepare the ship--but wish they had may arrangements to deal with this or changed hotels outside of old San Juan (cruise ship made arrangements). Ship was in great shape-very clean. Our room was very nice. Our first time to have the concierge level. Nice amenities with a special lounge with free drinks (good setup) and appetizers every evening from 5:30-8:30. The cabin came with a DVD payer with a Bose surround sound. Great! The concierge had DVD's and music CD's to check out. Food was good-not great, but considering the amount of people they serve, it is amazing they do it so well. We ate at Portofino's twice. Both times were excellent food and service. Went to a few shows-typical RCCL shows-the music/dance numbers are well done-the comedy/individual depend on your own taste. Main complaints: The other guests on board - many were very rude and pushy-we were pushed out of the way for elevators, stairs, pool, food, etc. Our 13 year old daughter (her 6th cruise) who loves the kid/teen programs, quit going after the 2nd day from harassing and verbal abuse. Our table of 12 (from Chicago, Connecticut, & Florida) said they would never sail from San Juan again. FYI we live in San Antonio (67% Hispanic) live, work, shop with Spanish speaking people everyday-so it isn't language issue. My husband is fluent in Spanish, and I can pass--and even when we tried to communicate with some of the guests we were rebuffed. It is really a shame. The islands we visited are all very nice. Aruba was booming-lots of building going on-we hired a taxi driver to show us around. Very nice. In Curacao we did the Close Animal Encounter-it is a 12 foot dive so even non-divers can do it.Feed sting rays, turtles, even sharks (through a hole in plexiglass) It was a great way for our daughter to get a taste of diving. We loved the building and architecture there. St Martin is beautiful, but the beach peddlers are really aggressive. Went to St. John's for the Trunk Bay snorkel- was a beautiful beach, too. Then an afternoon of shopping in St. Thomas. We thought Aruba had the best prices on jewelry and watches-if you are into that sort of thing-even better that St. Thomas. We ended our trip with a one day at the Ritz in San Juan--great way to end a vacation! We really loved the itinerary-but would think twice about going out of San Juan again. It's a long way (and not cheap) to put up with such passengers again. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2005
We just returned from our seventh cruise yesterday and while this cruise is still very fresh in my mind, I wanted to write this review. This was our sixth cruise with Royal Caribbean -- the other cruise was with Norwegian. This was, by ... Read More
We just returned from our seventh cruise yesterday and while this cruise is still very fresh in my mind, I wanted to write this review. This was our sixth cruise with Royal Caribbean -- the other cruise was with Norwegian. This was, by far, our best cruise ever. The ship is awesome, the cruise staff was very friendly and wonderful. This ship is very large and has tons of activities and things to do on board. A week just wasn't long enough -- we were unable to fit everything in. We slept on the average of five hours a night -- my husband and I just wanted to get in as much as possible. I had read many reviews prior to our sailing and I know that you can't please everyone, but this ship truly does try their hardest. Our inside stateroom was very clean and comfortable (we're never in our room for very long, but there was ample storage space and very comfortable for the two of us); our cabin steward (David) was fantastic. Meals were great both in the dining room and up at Windjammer and Island Grill -- no shortage of food on this cruise ship. Johnny Rockets is fun, entertaining and the food was awesome -- loved the onion rings and shakes! The cruise director, Richard Spacey, is very entertaining and fun. We really enjoyed his sense of humor. The ports of call were spectacular and plenty of excursions to choose from, shopping galore or if you just wanted to stay on the ship, there was plenty to do. In the past we have sailed on different ships, but this is the first time we can say that we can't wait to go back on AOS. It was truly delightful and we had a spectacular time. If you have a cruise planned in the future, please enjoy yourself and remember, you're on vacation and it's time to relax and have some fun -- don't dwell on the petty little things that others complain about in their reviews. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2005
This was our 9th cruise and our 4th cruise on Royal Caribbean. We are in our 50s. In addition to Royal Caribbean we have cruised on Celebrity and Norwegian. We both agreed this was one of our best cruises. The Adventure of the Seas is a ... Read More
This was our 9th cruise and our 4th cruise on Royal Caribbean. We are in our 50s. In addition to Royal Caribbean we have cruised on Celebrity and Norwegian. We both agreed this was one of our best cruises. The Adventure of the Seas is a truly beautiful ship. Embarkation was painless and the line not overly long. The ship is very large but tastefully decorated. Our cabin was roomier than on other Royal Caribbean cruises. The shower was was particularly large. We had a balcony which we used a lot. The dining room is huge but set up in such a way as to seem intimate. Our waiter (Georgi) and busboy (Cecil) were wonderfully attentive and very patient with every request. The stateroom attendant was also excellent and the service rivaled any other cruise line. The food was very good with a nice presentation. We did not go to Portofinos (the specialty restaurant)but were told by our dining mates that it was a wonderful experience. The shows were mediocre at best and the cruise director, Richard, was annoying. The ice show, however, was phenomenal. Be sure to watch your "Compass" so you get tickets. The show is free but the tickets are limited. The swimming pool areas were clean and there were plenty of chairs and towels available. The Solarium area was our favorite. It is decorated in an Italian style and is adults only. It is much quieter than the the regular pools. There are several hot tubs on the ship and there are always spaces available. The Spa is wonderful and there were numerous specials throughout the cruise. Prices were particularly reasonable when we were in port. We really acquainted ourselves with the entire ship. The miniature golf course was fun with its breathtaking views from the top of the ship. We watched the rock wall climbers from outside the 19th Hole Bar and cheered those climbers who were able to "ring the bell." The children's program seemed well run and there is a children's pool with a water slide. We never made it to Johnny Rockets but it looked like fun. Our favorite meeting place was the Schooner Bar which was staffed by a great group. The shopping area is a main focus in the ship and was frequently very crowded. The library was OK but not very quiet as many people used it to pass from one side of the ship to the other. There were many Spanish speaking cruisers which made the experience seem truly international. Announcements were always in English and Spanish and most staff seemed fluent in both languages. The ports of call (Aruba, Curacao, St. Thomas and St. Maarten) were wonderful with lots of picturesque beaches and shopping. The San Juan Airport did not seem adequate to handle the crowds of cruisers on Sunday. There were not enough chairs and the line for food at the only available restaurant was at least an hour long. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2005
We are unfortunately back from our first cruise on the AOS (January 23, 2005). DH and I are both 42. We chose not to take our kids out of school (DS 14, DS 19, DD 21). One word: WOW!!! More specific? Best vacation we've ever ... Read More
We are unfortunately back from our first cruise on the AOS (January 23, 2005). DH and I are both 42. We chose not to take our kids out of school (DS 14, DS 19, DD 21). One word: WOW!!! More specific? Best vacation we've ever had. Our cruise route took us from San Juan, to Aruba, Curacao, St. Marteen/Martin and St. Thomas and back to San Juan) - it was fantastic! We went to Aruba, Curacao, St. Maarten and St. Thomas. The ship is amazing and beautiful! It is clean and just unbelievable! We had a 9th floor JS on the hump (9318). We booked it because the difference between a balcony and a JS (at that time) was only $200. The room was fabulous. The only problem I saw with it is the fact that I can never go back to an oceanview or regular balcony. We had more than enough storage space (didn't use a lot of it) and the view was spectacular. The walk-in closet was a keeper & having the extra space for the bathtub was something I don't think I could give up. We were in the middle of the hump and could see the entire ship on the starboard side. The food very good to excellent; we were never disappointed. There is always something to do on board and always something to eat! If you went hungry and forget to eat breakfast or in port (like we did) I'd have to say that's your own fault. The weather was perfect (there was rain on the first at-sea day, occasionally during the cruise, and on the debarkation day, but how can you complain about a little rain in 80+ degree weather when everyone at home is freezing with snow/wind and the temp is at or below freezing)? DH really isn't "into" shows, so we didn't see any. Didn't really miss them though - we had late seating and were generally getting ready for dinner about the time that the shows were happening. We did try to make it to Karaoke one night, but it was so packed that we just didn't feel like pushing out way in. Arrival in San Juan. We arrived in SJU at about 8:00 p.m. (long day of flying - our 1st flight left at 6:35 a.m. M.S.T.) The airport arrival was not our best experience. Too many people and not enough organization. We finally secured a taxi (which is definitely price-regulated) and were transported to the Wyndham. We arrived at appx. 9:30 p.m. The Wyndham (which we were awarded via Hotwire) was adequate. Our room had two beds, each big enough for two very small adults or one regular sized adult. We decided it would be more comfortable to sleep in separate beds. It was fairly under cleaned, etc. We were on vacation, though, and chose to make the best of it. I think that if I had to do it over, I'd stay in Old San Juan. There were some really groovy looking hotels there (El Convente is one I recall specifically). We went across the walkway and ate at Tony Roma's - had a couple of beers and great Carolina Honey Ribs (even in Puerto Rico). We then decided to have a beer in the casino bar ($6.00 each - Coors Light). Pretty proud of those beers. Embarkation. Leaving the hotel was the also "taxing." I think everyone decided to leave at the same time. We made it to the ship around 12:30 p.m. and checked our bags and breezed through - right onto the ship. We went directly to our stateroom and it was a great first impression. Out cabin steward Mauricio was attentive and responsive, but unobtrusive throughout the entire cruise. We then made our way to the dining room where we discovered, to our pleasure, that we had a table for 2 - late seating. Then onto the Sky Bar for a cocktail (or two, I can't recall) before returning to our stateroom. We wandered, etc. and generally just chilled out. It was great. We went back to our stateroom and then our bags appeared. I unpacked and then we went and checked out the ship some more. Day 1: San Juan. We met our waiter (Raz), assistant waiter (Stephen) and bar waiter (Erskine). They were all phenomenal. That may be too mellow of a word. If anyone ever goes on the AOS, they should have Raz as their waiter, Stephen and Erskine as support staff. Raz was informative, polite, pleasant, knowledgeable, sweet, etc., etc., etc., etc. I cannot say enough great things about our wait staff. Stephen was great and Erskine made sure DH had his Coors Light before he sat down for dinner every night. That was greatly appreciated. I also want to point out that our head waiter came over to check on us every night. He would have a short conversation, not necessarily about dinner, with my DH as well. We've never had such a great head waiter. Usually they're not existent except on the last night (when they show up for tips). I saw our head waiter removing used plates, napkins, etc. Dinner the first night was casual - lots of people still hadn't arrived due to the winter storm; luggage was also slow in coming. We were very fortunate to have made the ship with all of our luggage. The food was very good; I had an onion tart, spinach salad and Shrimp Ravioli. More than enough food for me so I skipped dessert. We retired to our stateroom early to watch departure from our balcony. Unfortunately, we didn't sail until about 2:00 a.m. (waiting on lots of late arrivals.) I missed the sail-away. Day 2: At sea. This was another remarkable day. The weather wasn't overly cooperative, but we still enjoyed it (vacation remember??). We enjoyed coffee every morning on our balcony. You can't really beat that. We shopped/browsed along the promenade, had a couple of cocktails, ate lunch, played some in the casino, sat by the pool, etc. The pools weren't overly crowded because of the weather, the ship just didn't seem that crowded. (Come to find another 300 or so people had missed the ship because of the terrible weather back East.) We really enjoyed this day - it was also our first formal night. The dinner was great. I had escargot as an appetizer, Caesar salad and Teriyaki Salmon and rice. I also had the Crème Brule for dessert (it took a while so Stephen brought me a strawberry cheesecake to "tide me over" while we waited for the Crème Brule) - it was absolutely worth the wait. We wandered after dinner and saw some great musicians (again), stopped the Casino, and then on to bed at about 1:00 a.m. (maybe). Day 3: Aruba. We rented a 4X4 on our own in Aruba (Super Car Rental). They were right at the pier so we didn't have to waste any time going to the airport or other location to pick up our ride. We wanted a 4X4 we could lock, w/ AC (because of posts from the CC board) - it cost us $85.00 + the optional $15.00 for insurance. Carnivale was going on in Aruba, so lots of places were closed. We finally found a grocery store where we could buy some bottled water and went off in search of Baby beach; we ended up on the very tip of the island (below the prison) - the road signs are almost non-existent. That turned out to be very enjoyable. We met an Arubian lady who was out fishing with her 2 sons. She had gone to college in Oklahoma and spoke fluent English. She and her sons were also picking "sea grapes" which grew on some very beautiful plants and were quite tasty. We learned a lot about the island, its culture, etc. from this very nice lady and spent about an hour talking to her. She then pointed us in the direction of Baby Beach. We stopped at the local rental shop and rented snorkel gear ($5.00/PP/hour) and on to Baby Beach. The snorkeling was great; we saw big, beautiful fish. The sand was white and wonderful; the water crystal clear and warm. Lots of people though. Also, keep in mind that you have to pay $.50 to use the restroom, and the facilities for food/beverage are really minimal. We were glad we had bought a large pack of water. We left there after about an hour in search of Charlie's Bar in San Nicholas. We did find it, but it was closed due to Carnivale. We then went in search of the Black Hog (which was on the other side of the island. We found it, but it was pretty much closed up, except for the gift shop (fortunately they sold Coors light to drink while we shopped). It was still cool to check out the burn out track and the Harley Coaster. We decided to head back to the ship (traffic was really awful because of the holiday). We cleaned up a bit on the ship and set off to find Carlos and Charlies. We noticed when we were leaving the ship the 2nd time that there were many people boarding the ship. We decided to have a late lunch at Iguana Joes. Great choice - the beers were really cold and the Jerk Chicken Sandwich was really wonderful, bought one of the sons a T-shirt. We then walked down the street to Carlos and Charlies (which was also pretty quiet at that time). We had a beer and bought other DS a T-shirt (DH had to have one too). We headed back to the ship around 7:00 p.m. to clean up for our dinner at Portofinos. Our dinner there was really good, but I wouldn't do it again. The service was definitely less personal than we had been enjoying in the dining room. I had the sautEed shrimp on saffron rice, Caesar Salad, a small portion of lobster sauce spaghetti with small bits of lobster. The Tenderloin steak - fabulous - was served with mashed potentates, caramelized onions and asparagus. It was a great Tenderloin, perfectly cooked (medium rare). Dessert was a chocolate cup with creamed chocolate inside (can't remember the name). Overall, dinner was really great, except for the service was slow and impersonal, and they messed up part of DH's order. We decided to skip the after dinner festivities and went to bed. DH did go to check out the midnight buffet (not to eat, just to take photos). He said it was pretty impressive. Day 4: Curacao. (Gosh, is it really going this fast???) We again set off on our own adventure. We took a taxi to the Sea Aquarium (I think it was about $10.00 + tip). We really enjoyed the shows, especially the dolphin training exercise. DH got great video of this. They also had sea lions, sharks, sea turtles, fish, etc. After about 2-½ hours there, we decided it was time to venture to the beach. We walked along the Sea Aquarium Beach ($3.00/PP) and found two chairs ($3.00/PP) underneath two palm trees. Perfect. DH walked back up the beach and rented snorkel gear (I think this was about $24.00). We snorkeled and sunbathed. The snorkeling was okay, the water wasn't as clear as Aruba. We did see some really neat fish up along the break. There was also a public restroom with a fresh water shower and plenty of public facilities. That was nice for after a swim in the ocean. We met a really nice couple from Arizona (Mel and Annette). DH is a musician and so is Mel. We visited for a while and they left to return to the ship. We left after a few hours and ventured back to town via taxi. We stopped to shop (had to buy some Baby Gouda) and some shirts, shot glasses, etc. Then walked across the swinging bridge back to the ship. We watched the sail-away and then had a couple of drinks while getting ready for dinner. Balconies are the best. I had shrimp scampi for dinner, a salad and some type of appetizer (I can't remember what it was). As always, the service was perfect and the food was quite good. The breads were always fresh and I let Stephen pick my bread each night. We wandered after dinner and saw some great musicians (again), stopped the Casino, and then on to bed at about 1:00 a.m. Day 5: At Sea. We had breakfast in the Windjammer and it was good. The variety was fine. We wandered the ship, stopped at the Windjammer for water and iced tea and met a really nice couple there. We then played putt-putt golf (DH won - I was fairly put out by that) and watched the belly flop contest. That was hilarious. I cannot imagine putting oneself through that kind of pain for a key chain. Obviously they were enjoying themselves and so was the crowd. We then moved the casino for the slots tournament - it was fun, but we didn't make it to the 2nd round so continued to wander. Chairs at the pool were few and far between, so we chose to move up higher. We enjoyed the view from there better anyway. We took a nap that day, and just relaxed and tried to recuperate from the previous days. It was formal night at dinner that night, so we had cocktails on our balcony while getting dressed. We had crab cakes for appetizers (definitely not Chops quality) but OK. We then had salad, with Sea Bass as the appetizer. It was good. Day 6: St. Marteen. We left the ship fairly early to go off on our own adventure. We wanted to go to the beach and have another relaxing day. We found our way quite easily (taxi stands are clearly marked by destination) to Orient Beach (French side). We shared a taxi with 12 other people and agreed to meet back at the ship at 2:45 p.m. I think the cost was $5.00/PP (plus tip). We then ventured down the beach to Kontiki beach (red and white chairs and umbrellas). The sand was white, white, white and just beautiful. We rented chairs and an umbrella (and switched between chairs to share the umbrella) for $16.00 (?) We were very close to the activity, but not so close to be concerned about others. There are vendors on this beach, but a simple "no thank you" worked quite well. There was also a public restroom (male/female share) with a fresh water shower. There was plenty of nudity on the beach (bare-assed naked nudity). It's my understanding that folks at the naturist beach walk along this beach too. I guess it's very European for women to sunbathe or walk the beach topless. We left the beach in time to avoid too much sun (sunburn) and made it back to travel with the other 12 people in our group. The "head" of their group was giving our taxi driver such a bad time that I was sure he was going to kick us all out. DH thought the guy was hilarious. It was very entertaining. We stopped at the small shopping area outside the docks and DH met a really nice English gentleman. He was traveling on the Princess ship (a back to back cruise) that just so happened to be docked at the same time as the AOS. His wife was out shopping and he was having a few "cold ones." We had a nice talk, but had to get back to the ship to avoid it leaving without us!! Dinner that night was really great. Raz and our head waiter picked out a very special wine for dinner that night. It was a 200 Behringers, Founders Estate, Pinot Noir. It was quite exceptional. I had a smoked salmon appetizer, a nice salad, Lobster and Shrimp, and a really great cheesecake. My DH had the prime rib (which was served medium rare - exactly as ordered) and the Lobster and Shrimp). Raz offered us seconds on the lobster, but we declined. It appeared that lots of people were partaking in second and thirds . . . . It was really good lobster. We wandered after dinner and saw some great musicians (again), stopped the Casino, and then on to bed at about 1:00 a.m. Day 7. St. Thomas. We had to go through immigration, but that took only about 5 minutes. Show your passport and your sea pass card and move on through. St. Thomas is an absolutely beautiful island. Need I say more? I really loved St. Thomas. We booked an excursion here; it was offered through the ship - a private yacht with no more than 6 people (plus your captain). We ended up waiting for about ½ hour because the ship had overbooked the tours and the owner needed to call another captain in. We were really glad we volunteered to wait. We had a wonderful sail with a great couple from Austin, Texas. There were only 4 of us on the boat. The captain powered us out to Buck Island where we snorkeled and lazed in the sun for about 1-½ hour. The water was perfect, the snorkeling incomparable, definitely an excursion I would do again. We then enjoyed beers (or rum punch if it was your preference) on the yacht and the company of a really great captain and our co-snorkelers/sailors. Our captain sailed us back and, unfortunately, the end of the excursion was upon us. It was one of the most memorable and enjoyable experiences of my life. We walked back to the ship from the excursion, rinsed off a bit, and then off to shop. Really shop. My husband bought me a new ring, plus we found the Harley shop and found some great bargains on hot sauces, shot glasses, T-shirts. Another perfect day - other than DH had to drag me back onto the ship, kicking and screaming, by my hair. I knew that if I got back on that ship I'd end up back in Casper, WY. I was right too. Unfortunately, the cruise and our vacation had to end sometime. We went back to the ship and started the unfortunate process of packing. For dinner that night, I had shrimp cocktail, salad with pine nuts and sweet and sour Mahi Mahi. Another perfect day. Unfortunately, it had to end sometime. We went back to the room and finished packing. We put our bags out and went on the last of our adventures, seeing the last of the shipboard musicians, last shot at the Casino, and then to bed at about 1:00 a.m. Day 8. Disembarkation. It was pouring down rain as we watched our arrival into San Juan. The rainy weather didn't really slack off until we were just out of the terminal. We had the last number to be called because we didn't have a flight out of San Juan until Monday. We were out of our room by 8:15 or 8:30 a.m., and made our way to breakfast in the dining room. Breakfast was very good and we were seated with 3 couples who were traveling together (they were from Wisconsin). Breakfast was very leisurely, but we left there at about 9:30. We then went to look at photos and purchased a couple. We made our way up to the pool deck and waited until our number was called. The line looked really long, but moved really fast. We found our luggage - it was stacked in color-coded section. This was really easy. Also, getting through customs was speedy (get a porter, they'll breeze you right through and get you a taxi immediately). It was definitely worth the tip. We were back to the hotel by about 12:00 noon and checked right into our hotel. We decided to go shopping/exploring Old San Juan. I'm really glad we did because we enjoyed that self-tour a lot. I would have liked to have gone to the rain forest or bioluminescent pool, but because of the rainy weather, we opted not to do a tour. Well, I hope you found this summary of our 1/23/05 AOS cruise informative. If you have any questions, I'll try to answer them. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2005
To set the tone of my review I should explain this was our first and last cruise experience. I only wish I would have found a site, such as this, was available prior to booking. My wife and I found out about this site from an airline ... Read More
To set the tone of my review I should explain this was our first and last cruise experience. I only wish I would have found a site, such as this, was available prior to booking. My wife and I found out about this site from an airline steward while flying home early from our cruise vacation. Day One -- Boarded ship and was impressed with cleanliness. Took a while for luggage to reach my room. Decided to stroll ship while waiting for clothing. Returned to room about two hours later, no luggage. Would have been nice to shower but we just had to wait. FINALLY clean clothes ... but we better hurry because we are scheduled to eat in 20 minutes! Then it dawns on me ... I'm on vacation and I'm scheduled to eat? Oh well ... get a grip on myself ... after all I asked for this. Well down to the dining room we go sitting with six total strangers. Emphasis strange! Food was worst I ever ate, or should I say didn't eat. Waiter never asked if something was wrong when he returned to offer dessert. Harruhhhh! Ship is departing ... Look at wife and notice she is very uncomfortable. She did take motion sickness medication earlier in the day ... guess it's not working. Bouncing off walls in hallway while returning to room for rest ... we don't have our sea legs yet. Unrestful night in bed because of rolling seas ... and a mattress that was about 3 inches thick. Day Two -- This day was a nightmare. At sea all day and feeling worse physically than night before. Ship still rolling and now realize it's just not us ... many onboard feel same uncomfortable sickness from constant rolling of ship. After suffering all day long my wife and I decided that when we reach Aruba the following morning we would disembark the ship, thus ending our cruise. That evening I went to speak with Guest Relations. I explained our situation and asked if they could do one of two things. Either arrange for hotel stay on Aruba or flight back home from Aruba. Bottom line they explained we had to arrange this ourselves. Although I will admit they did offer the use of their phone for a fee. Just great ... and call who, INFORMATION? They requested we surrender our passports that evening for immigration purposes. What I found most distressing was not once did he ask if we would like to be seen by the medical staff. Matter of fact this person at guest relations didn't appear to be much older that 18 or 19 years old and had a very indifferent attitude. Prior to leaving guest relations they made sure I paid anything I owed while on my short stay, which I did in cash. Well I called my credit card company and they also billed my account. So, I was smart enough to save my cash recp't. ONCE OFF SHIP THE WONDERFUL PEOPLE OF ARUBA TOOK GREAT CARE OF US! I should also state that the cruise was packed with people from San Juan ... to help fill the rooms at a discounted price from what I heard. I found that group impolite and rude. I guess if you want a discounted cruise it would be better booked from San Juan for you bargain hunters. I should also point out the the level of entertainment was high school level. Wait, I've seen better entertainment at our local high school. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2005
This was our first cruise and it was for the most part very enjoyable. Our table staff in the dining room and the room steward were outstanding. There were 4 of us traveling together and the unfortunate part was that RCI seated us with 2 ... Read More
This was our first cruise and it was for the most part very enjoyable. Our table staff in the dining room and the room steward were outstanding. There were 4 of us traveling together and the unfortunate part was that RCI seated us with 2 older women who spoke little English. Not astute on their part. Since the ship offers to locals, there were many people from Puerto Rico on board and several who paid little attention to the formal dress code on formal nights. It was disappointing to see jeans, shorts and sneakers in the dining room, with no enforcement. We had a balcony room and that was excellent. We loved it in the evening. The shows were really good and the talent of the young singers and dancers was exceptional. The ice show is fantastic. There is something for everyone on board. We saw all the shows and liked them all. The '50s and '60s night was lots of fun, as were the Karaoke nights. We never really felt too crowded in some of the smaller bars on board where you could just sit and not have to drink if you chose not to. They were just nice places to sit and talk. The ports of call were very nice. I wouldn't bother with any of the ship's excursions as there are plenty of reputable taxi and tour operators ready to take you around the island. So unless you want something like a specialty such as parasailing, snorkeling, water type sports, if all you want is to see the islands and visit a beach, take a local tour or taxi .... it will save you money. We did this and saved probably $15-20 per person each time we wanted to do this. Plus there are many places from the town where you can walk back to the ship. We thought the cruise director did a fine job ... very upbeat all the time. Whew, that is a tough job. Shelby, the shopping guru puts on a shopping seminar. It is a little much for an hour and the Shopping Book that she makes available for sale is overpriced at $20.00. There is an art auction on board and it can be pricey, but we picked up a couple of beautiful pieces for a very reasonable price which we were happy about. Plus it is a nice thing to do on a sea day when you want to get out of the sun ... and they serve champagne! The casino was fun and we played a little bit .... just enough to say we were there. I saw a few people walk away with a couple of hundred dollars ... lucky them!  The spa is very nice but extremely expensive. They do have port day specials, but still quite high in price compared to what you can get on land. Pool areas are active and the adults only area is really nice and you can meet some very nice people. All in all, it was a beautiful week and I learned a lot about what and what not to do on a cruise. I would definitely do it again someday. It makes you forget about everything and you feel very elegant. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2005
We have cruised with Royal Caribbean before and were always pleased. Not so with this trip. A lot of things have changed since our last cruise and none for the better. This trip we took along three other couples who had always cruised on ... Read More
We have cruised with Royal Caribbean before and were always pleased. Not so with this trip. A lot of things have changed since our last cruise and none for the better. This trip we took along three other couples who had always cruised on Carnival. Prior to the trip we kept telling them how much better Royal Caribbean is than Carnival. Now we look like fools to them. They all agree that Carnival is much better. Food was mediocre at best in the dining rooms. At Johnny Rockets it was terrible. I gave it three tries but could stomach no more than a bite or two. How, I wonder, does someone get that much grease to stay in a piece of food? Everything we tried was saturated. And unlike the last trip you now have to pay a cover charge for JR's? We were also surprised to learn that there is now a charge for soft drinks. Or you are forced to buy a soda sticker for your sea pass. But this does not allow you to get soft drinks from the mini bar in your room. System simply does not make sense. An extra charge for soft drinks is cheesy IMO. Alcohol is no longer stocked in the mini bar as it was on previous cruises. Unlike our last cruise you cannot order more than one entree in the main dining room. Drinks take forever to get and the order was wrong more often than not. Five out of the seven night the restrooms adjacent to the dining rooms were horrible. Raw sewage from the toilets was over flowing onto the floors. The stench was overwhelming. Every night I observed the same group of young people enter the dining room wearing totally inappropriate attire. On one of the formal nights they had baggy jeans hanging half off their butts, T-shirts, huge gold necklaces and rags tied on top of their head/baseball caps. They were admitted into the dining room without so much as a second glance by the staff. Even though the seas were fairly calm the ship rocked the entire time. Our last cruise was rock solid. I asked a crew member about the rocking. He said that due to the increased cost of fuel the Cpt. did not put the stabilizers out. Had I known this I would not have gone on the cruise. I was seasick 3 out of the 4 nights of the cruise. Several members of our party also had bouts of seasickness. This was by far the worst cruise and worst vacation my wife and I have ever been on. But it was a learning lesson. I learned that Royal Caribbean is more concerned with the bottom line than they are with their clients. I have taken my last Royal Caribbean cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2005
Just got back from the Adventure of the Seas and LOVED it! This is my 10th cruise, 3rd with Royal Caribbean. The ship is beautiful! We flew down a day early and stayed at the Howard Johnson for $120 (5 minutes from airport). This was ... Read More
Just got back from the Adventure of the Seas and LOVED it! This is my 10th cruise, 3rd with Royal Caribbean. The ship is beautiful! We flew down a day early and stayed at the Howard Johnson for $120 (5 minutes from airport). This was only hotel available, and I was a little worried, but it turned out ok. Very clean hotel, not in the best neighborhood, great restaurant. Very close to Walgreen's (which was gated, now I knew it wasn't a great neighborhood) where we picked up snorkel gear and coke to bring onboard. It was a 12 minute taxi ride to pier. We were among first 25 people in line. They let us check in after about 10 minutes of waiting. After checking in, we sat down and waited to get onboard. Royal Caribbean provided cookies and lemonade while we waited, which I thought was very nice. After about 45 minutes we were walking onboard!! It was before noon, so we had the whole day on the ship. Our cabins were Promenade rooms. They weren't ready yet, but our cabin steward, Calvin let us put our bags in the closet and we were off to explore! What a beautiful ship! We found our dining room table, which was in a great spot. Then went up to the pool bar. They make the drinks STRONG on this ship! We had sun every day. We loved all the ports, (Aruba & Curacao were new to us). We had a great wait staff (all female, which was very different, but a nice change! We liked the promenade stateroom, although we did miss having a balcony. It wasn't as noisy as I had heard. We slept good. The only thing I wasn't that crazy about was their shore excursions. We did the rhino riders in St. Maarten, which was good, but very expensive. My parents went on a horrible shore excursion, land & see in St. Maarten. All other excursions we did privately and they were much better. After the cruise, we stayed one more night in San Juan, at the Marriott San Juan Stellaris Casino. This was a very nice hotel, with a great Italian restaurant. I wish I could go back on this cruise and relive it, it was wonderful! Read Less
Sail Date: February 2005
We cruised on the 2/6 sailing out of Sab Juan. We flew into San Juan on Saturday so as to have time to adjust and also make sure we had enough time to explore OSJ and the ship on Sunday. We arrived at the ship on Sunday at 1 p.m. and ... Read More
We cruised on the 2/6 sailing out of Sab Juan. We flew into San Juan on Saturday so as to have time to adjust and also make sure we had enough time to explore OSJ and the ship on Sunday. We arrived at the ship on Sunday at 1 p.m. and were through check-in and on board by 1:20. I could not imagine a smoother check-in. The longest delay we had was having our picture taken for security. We checked our carry-on bags since the cabin was not ready yet and began to explore the ship. We covered every area possible and had lunch in WJ. The food for such an early time when everything was in a large state of transition from one sailing to another was very good. Unfortunately this was the only time I found paella anywhere on the ship. For paella prepared in a large quantity, it was very good. We actually ate in Portofino the first night. We assumed that since it was the first night of sailing as well as Super Bowl Sunday, there would not be a crowd. We were correct. The only other table was next to us with the cruise director as 2 other ship officers. This was the best meal we had the entire week and the service was superb. I highly recommend Portofino as well as going on the first night of sailing. As a general comment, I thought the overall quality of food in the main dining room was at best average. We were placed at a table with 2 other couples in addition to the 4 of us sailing together. Had we not had so much fun at dinner, we probably would have tried to eat elsewhere during the week. We had pleasant wait staff but they were trying so hard and it was very difficult to understand their heavily accented english. Overall the weather was great during the week. The ship looked fantastic, I did not notice any area that was worn. The people on board were wonderful. I did not notice any of the passenger problems that others have reported. There were people from all around the world including Europe, Latin America and Asia. there were a few notable exceptions that we all expect when we are in a crowd of 3000. Nothing unusual. Our stops in Aruba, Curacao, St. Maarten and St. Thomas were great. We did not take any ship organized tours but rather created our own. On Aruba we rented a Jeep and drove all over the island. No road signs, no speed limits and great scenery. Baby Beach is a must do stop. Very small crowds and a wonderful beach even if we made our own road to get there. We did get to the Natural Bridge. While pretty, the trip to and from was better. The people from Aruba (Arubans?) that we met were very nice and friendly. Curacao was an island best viewed from a distance. We were up late in Aruba watching the last parade of Carnival so we slept in a bit and then walked to town. There was trash everywhere and most areas were dilapidated and rundown. We walked around for a couple of hours, went into more shops than I want to again and then went back to the ship in the early afternoon. Lunch there and then sit by the pool. It was amazing to watch the people casually strolling back to the ship after the final horn was sounded at 5. I don't think anyone was left behind, though. The days at sea were excellent. We had plenty of time to lounge by the pool, ignore the wacky antics of the cruise staff organizing the conga lines and get some sun. The entertainment was above average. We had the Drifters on board for one show. They were very good. The two comics were very funny. The ice show is not to be missed. The production shows were OK but at least the sound volume was tolerable. St. Maarten and St. Thomas were wonderful islands to visit. We arranged a daysil trip on St. Thomas that was a fantastic way to end the trip. The only dark spot was getting through the San Juan airport on Sunday. Never again will I leave on Sunday; it would be far better to arrange tio stay an additional day to avoid the crowd. I thought I was in a Third World country. 48,000 people go through the airport on the weekend and it is a mess. There are seats for perhaps 10,000 people. We heard people complaining that they were in the check-in line for over 2 hours. Security is a joke in terms of trying to get through efficiently. All food is in the terminal outside security! Anyway, all in all the trip was great and I would definitely do it again. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2005
We sailed on the Adventure of the Seas on February 27th. We went to San Juan a day early just to beat the weather, being from the northeast. This worked out perfectly. Went to the ship around 11:30 am and were able to board by 12:15. Rooms ... Read More
We sailed on the Adventure of the Seas on February 27th. We went to San Juan a day early just to beat the weather, being from the northeast. This worked out perfectly. Went to the ship around 11:30 am and were able to board by 12:15. Rooms were not ready until 2:00 pm. They had plenty to keep us busy. Music was already playing and bars were open! We were very pleased with our stateroom. It was on deck eight and it was a inside cabin that overlooked the Royal Promenade. The room was very quiet considering all the parades and people shopping till all hours of the night. The ship left at 10:30 pm. Day 1 at sea. Weather was great, people were nice, staff were wonderful and accommodating. Day 2 stopped at Aruba, the island is poor but does have a special quality about it. They say "It's One Happy Island", and this could not be more true. Highly recommend the KooKoo Kanukoo open air bus ride. What a blast!!! Day 3 was Curacao. This island was very quaint and clean. Good shopping and very nice beaches. Read somewhere that Curacao was everything that Aruba wasn't. Very true! A must see! Day 4 we were at sea. Again weather was perfect. Spent a lot of time at the pool which was crowded but always able to find a spot to sit. Bar staff were excellent and friendly. This particular night was the Ice Show, and its worth seeing!! Day 5 we stopped in St. Maarten. This by far was mine my husbands favorite. Shopping was incredible. Had a good day shopping and going to the beach which was right when you got off the water taxi. For $10.00 we got 2 chairs an umbrella, and 2 beers and could stay all day if we wanted to. Just a very nice island. I think I would go back and spend a week there. Day 6 St. Thomas. I really didn't care for this island to much. I found it dirty, bums sleeping in the streets, and it smelt like a septic tank. Although very scenic, just didn't do anything for me. Did go to Meagan's Bay beach which was very nice but wouldn't consider it one of the top 10 in the world. Shopping was ok but you sort of felt unsafe between the busy traffic and types of people you saw. Day 7. Had to be out of the rooms by 8:00 am. Windjammer served breakfast till 9:00am. Disembarkation went very smooth and customs also very smooth. I can only say great things about this trip. I only wish that I didn't have to come home. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2005
We arrived in San Juan airport and were told to go stand by a far wall and wait while luggage was collected by passengers. There were no seats just empty space and after almost two our wait while hundreds of passengers assembled we were ... Read More
We arrived in San Juan airport and were told to go stand by a far wall and wait while luggage was collected by passengers. There were no seats just empty space and after almost two our wait while hundreds of passengers assembled we were told to follow along bringing our luggage with no carts available to help with transport. After a long walk through airport and outside to to truck we were told to wait while it was loaded on a truck and then boarded a bus to ship. Mass confusion at terminal but we had all paper work ready and are Diamond C & A members so that went fine. By the time we boarded our dinner time was over and we were told to report for life boat drill. This took about one hour outside on a hot and humid deck and after this very hungry and thirsty we tried to find some dinner. The Windjammer was closed, Johnny Rockets was closed and late diners were in dining room. Desperate by now we went to Portofino and paid the extra for the three of us. The meal there was wonderful but all this delay was so unnecessary and not what we had ever experienced in over 12 years cruising with Royal Caribbean. Children were everywhere on ship and mostly alone and loud and obnoxious as it was Spring vacation time. We realize this is parents fault but the guidelines ship outlines says this will not be tolerated so why is it? We often heard children laughing about how they were annoying passengers and thinking it was such a hoot and not letting anyone on elevators. We were traveling with a sixteen year old granddaughter so she could get scuba certification on board and she was even appalled at behavior. Royal Caribbean had better enforce its own rules or risk losing a huge amount of their cruising business. We found the ship too big and the shows not very good, just too much glitz and difficulty finding your way around ship. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2005
The Adventure of the Seas is an exceptionally beautiful ship. Compared to the Voyager of the Seas, I found the AOS brighter and more colorful. The embarkation process was quick. I recommend the transfers from the pier to the ship. There ... Read More
The Adventure of the Seas is an exceptionally beautiful ship. Compared to the Voyager of the Seas, I found the AOS brighter and more colorful. The embarkation process was quick. I recommend the transfers from the pier to the ship. There was little carrying of luggage to short distances where they were loaded onto trucks for delivery to the ship. The food was excellent as was the dining room and stateroom staff. Our waiter George was from Romania as was most of the dining room staff. They were absolutely magnificent and had a very good command of the English language. This was a major improvement over my waiter and assistant waiter on the Voyager. The food was exceptional as were the drinks. They were both plentiful and readily available. On the Voyager, halfway through the cruise they ran out of white zinfandel. That was inexcusable. Guest relations staff were extremely accommodating and friendly. The entertainment was fair. The quality of the Royal Caribbean singers and dancers was somewhat amateurish. The cruise performers on the Voyager were superb. The entertainment was fair except for "CHARO." She was hilarious and performed classical and Flamenco guitar solos. She is classically trained and studied with the great Andres Segovia. As a former Assistant Principal of Music and a former professional musician I can tell you that she blew me away. The casino is absolutely beautiful but the slots were unfriendly. The Meet & Mingle was a bust as it was on the Voyager. The main issue that I have is the hassle of getting a lounge chair at pool side. There has to be a better system in place that makes it easier and more convenient to make the lounge chairs more accessible for everyone. People were placing towels on the chairs early in the morning and disappearing for hours at a time. There were arguments taking place when people removed the towels and took possession of the vacant chairs. Everything about this ship was top shelf as were the ports. Aruba, Curacao, St. Maarten and St. Thomas were most beautiful. Kudos to everyone associated with the Adventure of the seas. I give the Adventure of the Seas and the itinerary 5 stars (a top rating of 6). "BRAVO." Read Less
Sail Date: March 2005
My wife and I have been on 3 previous cruises . This was the largest cruise ship we have been on. We started on a NCL 40,000 ton Dream, second cruise was on Celebrity 70,000 ton Millennium, third was RCCL 90,000 ton Splendor of the Seas. ... Read More
My wife and I have been on 3 previous cruises . This was the largest cruise ship we have been on. We started on a NCL 40,000 ton Dream, second cruise was on Celebrity 70,000 ton Millennium, third was RCCL 90,000 ton Splendor of the Seas. We thought that the Adventure would be too large and intimidating for us. That would prove to us to be far from the truth. Within one day on this marvelous ship we were able to get from one area to another without any confusion. The great advantage of going on a ship this size is the wide variety of choices that you can pick vs a smaller ship. Especially realizing to the entertainment on board with all the bars and lounges. The smaller ships in the 70,000 tons and under can get very boring after several days in the evening when you hit the lounges for your entertainment. On this ship we were never bored. One area of major disappointment on this ship was the dining experience. In the past three cruises we had a wonderful experience at the dining. Particularly on the Celebrity cruise. Celebrity excels in this area. We had the second seating on the Adventure. Food was average. The quality that you would find at a "chain "type restaurant or sports bar restaurant. Service was average. Our Head waiter and assistant waiter were friendly but did not put out the extra special service that you would have received on this Cruise line ten years ago. On a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the best. I would rate the Dining a 3-4. Perhaps this is why more and more people are doing the "Free Style" Dining. Why waste two hours of your time if the Dining is mediocre? This ship however has Portofinos fo a extra cost of $20 per person. This was excellent place to book for a evening! Truly a fantastic time and top quality food and service. This is what we should have at the main dining on RCCL. Book Portofinos immediately when you arrive because this restaurant does fill up very quickly. This was a 10 !! We had very prompt room service each morning for coffee and juices . We found it very relaxing in the morning on our balcony. The Windjammer cafe was very good for the breakfasts. However it was very crowded and difficult at times to find a table. Loved the omelettes! We never had lunch or dinner but the numerous people we talked to stated that the Windjammer was very good overall. 6 people from our group chose to eat most of the evenings at the Windjammer vs the Main Dining and preferred it. Johnny Rockets is ok for a one time stop for the burger and malt. However i was disappointed that you were charged a extra cost for a average Burger. Nothing special . it was fun to watch the waiters dance and sing every 20 minutes or so. Fun for the kids. Don't go if you are wanting a exceptional Burger and Malt. Entertainment overall on the ship was very good. If you spend alot of time during the day around the main pool area there are always activities that you could choose to be involved in. Such as the "sexy mens legs contest", Horse racing, and the mans "belly flop" contest. That was a blast to watch, and hilarious!! The Caribbean band was great and they performed a wide variety of "island " music every day. The entertainment at the numerous bars/lounges was also very good. Please check out the Schooner Bar for great piano music on the 5th level. The latin music performers at one of the lounges on the 4th level also excellent. The hidden secret is the British pub on the mall area across from the sports bar on the 5th level and the most beautiful lounge is the Viking Crown lounge. Many people found that it takes about 1 to 2 days to realize that you can get to one spot to another easier by always going to level 5. Ports of call very good. We are beach lovers so go to Orient beach when you get to St. Maarten. On the french side and probably one of the top 3 beaches we have ever been on, We like RCCL for the overall service. Very friendly cruise people and service. We are sure that the other cruise lines are also average with the Dining aspect relating to food quality and service. I am afraid that all the lines will follow NCL eventually and go to the "Free Style " dining. That's a shame because the Dining experience was to us the main attraction for cruising. So if Dining is number one criteria for cruising you then need to book on Celebrity. They really are the last remaining cruise line left in the main market for great dining experience. We will book again on RCCl and Celebrity. And we would not hesitate to go on a large cruise ship again of this size. If you want more intimacy you should book on a ship that is in the 70,000 tons and under. Steve and Karen Rognrud Read Less
Sail Date: March 2005
I read a lot of reviews before we went on the cruise and I would like to ask those people what ship they went on? This was a fantastic cruise ship. Some of the nicest staff on the sea. In case you wonder if this was my first cruise, nope ... Read More
I read a lot of reviews before we went on the cruise and I would like to ask those people what ship they went on? This was a fantastic cruise ship. Some of the nicest staff on the sea. In case you wonder if this was my first cruise, nope it was about my 7th. We have been on Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, Princess and Carnival. This ship was clean, beautiful and fun. The food was really great much better than the last Royal Caribbean we were on. Staff was terrific and entertainment was really nice. Their production shows were not up to their normal excellence, but the main liners were really great! I would really like to try this ship again, we were on a spring break cruise and there were 1000 kids on the ship. But even with that many kids this ship really never feels small. They could use a few more things to do around the ship during sea days, but that said I never even had a chance to see the whole ship. Same old stuff in the shops, although the promenade was really a fun and happening area on the ship. Elevators worked well and we never waited that long for anything. Theater has plenty of seats. As do the dining rooms and the buffet areas. Actually even has lots of pool area seating and I never had problems finding a seat anywhere. Tours were usual and customary we did not try any of the new stuff since we were a group of 6 and really different tastes in tours. My husband did the diving review on the ship and found the dive shop staff wonderful and helpful. He really enjoyed both of his dive experiences. Did I mention friendly staff, they have a great staff. Head waiter was the best we ever encountered on any ship. Captain of the ship came to wish my mom a happy 75th birthday personally! Read Less
Sail Date: March 2005
This was the best cruise ship we have ever traveled on. If you have read a negative comment about AOS, forget it. You will be very happy with the results of this ship. I participate in the Roll Call Boards and all of the people I posted ... Read More
This was the best cruise ship we have ever traveled on. If you have read a negative comment about AOS, forget it. You will be very happy with the results of this ship. I participate in the Roll Call Boards and all of the people I posted with agreed that this ship was terrific. We have sailed on the Voyager class ship before, Explorer, in 6/2003. Adventure looks identical except for theme of the decor. Everyone aboard was commenting on how beautiful of a ship this was, and how clean. I observed countless numbers of people cleaning and polishing and pour disinfectant into toilets in the restroom. Our room was kept immaculate by housekeeping with fresh towels and a good cleaning twice a day. RCCL is serious about keeping the ships as germ free as they can. We flew from Los Angeles to Puerto Rico arriving in the mid-day on Saturday before we sailed. We had time to take a nap, swim and eat. We stayed at the Sheraton Old San Juan (Formerly the Wyndam). The hotel has been completely redone since it became a Sheraton. The beds are fantastic! The hotel is not on the beach, but is close to the docks and walking distance to restaurants and old San Juan for shopping. We chose to have lunch in a restaurant across from the hotel (in a connected shopping center) and had Puerto Rican style food that was just great. For dinner we walked around the corner to Senior Frogs and a Yard of Margaritas, plus some food of course! On Sunday we boarded at 12:00 noon with no lines, no waits and no hassles. Everything was smooth. You cannot get your room until 2pm, but the Island Grill/Windjammer is open for lunch. We sat down next to a window and began a terrific week! You have two formal nights on this cruise, one on each of the days at sea. Most people are very dressed on the first night, and still elegant the second, but toned down. The rest of the nights are either casual or dressy casual in the dinning rooms. Portofino's prefers that guests dress dressy casual except on formal nights when they expect formal. Jackets are preferred for men, but not insisted on. You must wear shoes anywhere there is food served. When in the dining room never hesitate to ask for more than one plate of anything or more than one choice. You will be accommodated. Now about the food. We sailed for spring break and had been told that the menu had changed three weeks before. I must tell you that I never, NEVER had a bad meal. Not one thing tasted bad, was under or over cooked, and everything was presented so nicely. I'm a very fussy eater and I never had call to send anything back. No one at our table did either. No one I met or any of the other Roll Callers had a complaint. From the Cafe to the buffet to Johnny Rockets to Portofino, the food was quality, quantity and delicious. About Johnny Rockets: Unless you are Diamond or Platinum Crown & Anc you must pay $3.95 per person to get in. The all the food you could want to eat is yours, except for the Shakes which have a small charge. Portofinos has a cover charge too. The good thing is that you don't have to eat at either one. If you want to it will cost. If it bothers you to pay for extra, then just don't go. The food and service anywhere is the ship is excellent. What about the service? We are talking 5 stars. My water glass was never empty, the staff was kind and very nice, and everyone who works on AOS seems to really like what they do! I wish it was that way here at my office. Ask questions you get a answer with a smile. Need help, they go out of there way to accommodate you. Sitting in the Windjammer, the waiters refill your drinks, carry plates for you and will even go get you another hot dog if you want it. The people who hire for this ship should be commended on the job they have done finding a great crew, training them very well, and providing them with an environment that keeps them happy. Job well done RCCL! Entertainment. The cruise director, Richard Spacy, is a gas. He has such a funny sense of humor and he is everywhere. We saw a salute to the Temptations and Beatlemania. Both were so well done that people were dancing and singing and clapping and screaming! Top notch performances (except that the person doing John Lennon was shorter that John, but that's being very picky!). The comics, magicians and other performers were good too. I'm not much for stage shows, but they were a nice way to end each night. We loved the Ice Show. Being a mom of a figure skater I know this sport very well. It's such a small surface of ice that it makes doing the skating harder, much harder. The skaters did an excellent job of it and the audience was brought to their feet at the end of the show. The costumes, scenery and production quality was extremely well done. Don't miss the ice show. You can skate on the ice during the week if you bring long pants and socks. I recommend mittens too as the mini Zamboni doesn't cut the ice, it just lays water. So the ice can be rough and might irritate your hands. The skating and the Ice shows are free. Ice skates are available if you don't have your own and they do not charge for them. During the day there is so much to do. I know how to fold napkins, towels and do scrapbooking. I've seen the results of bellyflops, slot tournaments and spa treatments. I saw brave rock wall climbers, joggers, golfers, and exercise enthusiasts. I watched from on deck, up high in the Blue Moon Lounge and in the peace of the adult old swim area. I saw kids everywhere having fun, dancing in their disco, parades, circus performances and having the times of their lives just going up and down in the elevators. I went to a cooking demo with the head chef, my hubbie and daughter took tours with the safety director and of the galley, and I sat and watched the water go by on my balcony. I'm very refreshed and had a wonderful time. I can't wait to go again, and I very highly recommend this ship to everyone who wants to have a wonderful Adventure on the Seas! Read Less
Sail Date: April 2005
What a great trip!!! We really had a blast and met the best people. I am really busy at work and have to make this short. I'm just going to point out the highlights and low points rather quickly. First of all...I highly recommend ... Read More
What a great trip!!! We really had a blast and met the best people. I am really busy at work and have to make this short. I'm just going to point out the highlights and low points rather quickly. First of all...I highly recommend registering for the meet and mingle. The people we met were great and very friendly and helpful (this was our first cruise and most others were veteran cruisers). We didn't hang out with any of them much, but it was nice to see familiar faces when you're walking around the ship or out and about in the ports of call. Low points: 1. Ketchup...that's right...ketchup. For a cruise that is all deluxe and first class, they give you little packets of ketchup at breakfast for your potatoes. I just thought that was chincy. Give me a bottle or a bowl. And one day they did have bowls of ketchup sitting out on the buffet. 2. The coffee sucks. 3. In one review, someone said that sailing from San Juan was bad, due to the ship "giving away" rooms to the locals for cheap. That the locals were rude and there was a lot of "riff raff". I can see her point. There were A LOT of locals on our ship too. All the announcements were done first in English, and then in Spanish. That does get a little old after about 2 days. But for the most part, there was no bother at all. The rude people we ran into were all English speaking from the 48 states. There were a few. But really no different from everyday life of running into and dealing with your typical jerk here and there. Most people were absolutely great. Seven days and we ran into 3-4 REALLY RUDE people. With 3000 people on the ship...that's not bad. However...I may be more inclined to sail from the states next time...or brush up on my Spanish. 4. Watch what you buy and where you buy it. St Maarten is cheaper than St. Thomas. I bought a camcorder and actually found it for about the same price here in the states. But down there there is no tax, shipping etc. Jewelry is cheaper in the islands...but so is the quality. They say the diamonds are certified...but they certify them a little differently down there. I would NOT spend big bucks ie: engagement ring, etc. Small purchases rings, necklaces, etc should be fine. Just do your homework. Research what you want here in the states and then price it out there. Watches though...seem to be better priced there. However, I wanted to add a bezel and diamond face for my Rolex and the places I checked were WAY over priced for what I can get in the states....once again...DO YOUR HOMEWORK. 5. Book your excursions early...they do fill up. But we found PLENTY to do. 6. The food was more of a high point than a low point. We heard that the food was just exceptional. It was probably better than most meals that I get when I eat at a nice place. But it wasn't exceptional. Maybe I had my expectations set too high. Don't get me wrong..it was GREAT. And lots of it. The food presentation was above what I expected. Some things could of been a bit hotter or more fresh. But not once did we complain or have to send anything back. I gained 5 pounds...so that tells you the food certainly wasn't bad!! High points: 1. Service. Just exceeded everything. Simply the best. Everyone on the ship was great except the workers at the rock climbing wall. They had NO instruction and were not happy campers. They were the ONLY workers that did not exceed service expectations. 2. The food *see above. Lots of food...really, if it sounds like I was complaining about the food. I'm not. When you serve 3000 people a day, they did a GREAT job. 3. Ports of call were great. Beaches were fantastic. 4. Excursions were great. Ship staff is very helpful. 5. On our ship we found the Conisseur Lounge. Cigar bar. Victoria (the host) was the best and the ship did not advertise this lounge. We were the only people in it most of the week. Nice place to hide and relax after dinner. On another review the person said the shows were bad. They were not. Every show was great. I thought the kids would be an issue and they were not. We hardly saw any children all trip and when we did they were very well behaved. RC does a great job of keeping them occupied and out of your way. Mostly adult couples on board. I would of been bummed if I was a single person on this cruise. Carmen (our waitress) at the Duck and Dog (ship bar) was outstanding. Shopping on the ship was great too. We have NO COMPLAINTS about the whole experience. I highly recommend Royal Caribbean and will sail with them again. From what we learned from others on board Royal Caribbean is the best and all other lines come in a distant second place. Tipping!!! I almost forgot. Anyone that sells you anything ie: drinks, cigars etc., gets a 15% gratuity automatically. (Its added to your total when you buy it) For those that get that tip...that is all they earn. They work for tips and room and board. So if you order a large drink order..or just one drink...think about your tip. I tipped a buck or so almost every time once I learned this. I also tipped extra the last night of the cruise for those that served us so well. SUNSCREEN!! Use it early and often. The sun IS different down there. We had spf 30 and it was just enough. We actually ended up getting spf 50 and using that towards the end. The sun will get you!! We had even tanned quite a bit before we went. Have fun. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2005
We just got back from a wonderful cruise onboard the Adventure of the Seas (RCCL). Before we departed for this vacation we read some negative and positive comments about this particular cruise departing out of San Juan. Our overall rating ... Read More
We just got back from a wonderful cruise onboard the Adventure of the Seas (RCCL). Before we departed for this vacation we read some negative and positive comments about this particular cruise departing out of San Juan. Our overall rating for this cruise would be 7 out of 10 (very good). We believe you make what you want of your vacation therefore didn't take the negative comments too much to heart. We did not prebook transportation through RCCL and actually found that we saved ourselves some money. Taxi's have regulated fares and it was $10.00 US for two people whilst in a vehicle with 6 others. Embarkation was extremely fast and the agents where fun and friendly in San Juan. Our cabin was an inside cabin near the aft of the ship which was clean and in good condition. You do not leave San Juan until 10pm in the evening so you have a lot of free time getting to see the ship before she sails. It is a little bit strange sailing that late at night however it seems to get the ships atmosphere off to a more softer slower pace as passengers where boarding from early as 1pm and late as 9pm. We sailed to St. Thomas which is a duty free haven for Americans which we are not so we skipped shopping on this island to go spend sometime at Sapphire beach which we recommend over seeing Meagan's Bay the more touristy beach. We rented a scooter downtown which was fun however if you are not an experienced rider we do not recommend it as driving is on the left and the roads are pretty twisty. Also as a note taxi's all have regulated fares and is $3.00 per person from the cruise ship terminal into downtown charlotte Amalie. Traffic can get really bad on this island so if you can do the walk it only takes about 20 minutes and in the afternoon you actually beat the taxi's back to the cruise ship. On to St. Maarten which we have been here twice before and by far is our favorite island. Alcohol and jewelery our very cheap in Philipsburg so we did all our shopping here to get the best deals. There is a water taxi from the port into Philipsburg which is about $3.00 per person. Once again the walk is quite manageable at about 20 minutes into downtown however the roads are not that great. We really stay away from the touristy beaches so we rented a scooter on this island as well which is quite safe and driving is on the right to go to Baie Rouge which is located on the french side of the island. It is much quieter and frequented by locals, there is also washrooms and a restaurant for convenience and the option to rent chairs and an umbrella for a small fee of $15.00 US. If you are looking for something a little different we recommend the Sunset Beach Bar which is located at Maho Beach at the end of the airports runway. You can sit outside and watch airplanes come and go from the airport with the unreal feeling like you are right next to them. It is definitely something to be seen. Next stop was Antigua. We made the sorry mistake of taking a local taxi tour with 3 other couples to see the sites of Antigua. We didn't really see much as our driver had a little bit of a lead foot and stopped only at Shirley Heights for us to take pictures. We drove past Nelson's dockyard and then onto Jolly beach which was quite nice. If you can do an excursion on this island from RCCL you will see more for your money. If you have the time try to do the walk up the hill to St. John's Cathedral which is quite an interesting building and grounds. From here we sailed to St. Lucia which once again we recommend an excursion from RCCL. There is not much to do on this island as it is purely landscape and the most interesting thing is the exceptional Pitons which are the islands twin peaks. Shopping is really good and you don't seem to be hassled by the locals as much as in Antigua. The last port of call was Barbados. This was quickly a favorite with us. We decided to do the 4x4 adventure and Paradise beach excursion through RCCL which was fantastic. We drove through sugar cane plantations, stopped at Bathsheba, viewed the Platinum coast and then did some swimming at Paradise beach. Overall it was a great introduction to the island and after 3 hours we still had enough time in the day to do something else. We took a taxi from the port to the Mount Gay Rum Distillery which is about a 5 minute drive away. Cost was $10.00 US one way and entrance fee for the tour was $6.00 per person which includes rum tasting at the end. If you do this same tour through RCCL it would cost $42.00 per person so you are better off doing it on your own. Disembarkation was quite painless as we where off the ship quickly once our group number was called to disembark. You do clear US customs and immigration once you disembark and then you enter a large room in which you have to try to find your luggage. This is truly the fun part as you have no idea where to start and it is literally a sea of bags (pardon the pun). Once you exit the terminal taxi's are right out front waiting for anyone needing that service and all the prepaid transportation is nicely lined up. Like we said we had a great time on the cruise and RCCL was fun and organized. I would definitely recommend this cruise and the cruise line to anyone. I hope this helps anyone with their travel plans and feel free to email us if you have any additional questions. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2005
For our first wedding anniversary, Naren and I went on a cruise to celebrate. We went on the RCCL Adventure of the Seas on 4/3/05. The sailing was from Puerto Rico and went to Aruba, Curacao, St. Maarten, and St. Thomas. Ill go into the ... Read More
For our first wedding anniversary, Naren and I went on a cruise to celebrate. We went on the RCCL Adventure of the Seas on 4/3/05. The sailing was from Puerto Rico and went to Aruba, Curacao, St. Maarten, and St. Thomas. Ill go into the details of the trip in a minute, but here are some general overall opinions and ratings. The ratings are: bad  ok  good  great. Traveling to the ship: bad Weather: great Embarkation: great Cabin: ok Cabin Attendant: ok Ship: great Entertainment: good/great Food: good/great Wait Staff: good Aruba: ok Curacao: bad St. Maarten: good St. Thomas: great CruiseCritic crowd: great Disembarkation: good Traveling home: ok Friday April 1, 2005  Leaving for the airport -- In a 9/80 schedule, I work every other Friday, today was my Off Friday. It was used to prepare for the trip. Naren also has this 9/80 schedule, and so we went to our local Hertz office to pick up the rental car. We got to the office, a guy started helping us, and then just sort of wandered off. Then another girl, Kirsten helped us. Because of the wandering and confusion, she gave us some free gasoline. We got ¼ of a tank for $2.20 per gallon. Thats cheap because the station at the corner wanted $2.54. Anyhow we then ran last minute errands, some dealing with my job/payroll issues, and then we went home and packed. Yes we waited until the last minute. Naren then called his family. I did a quick manicure, then we watched a bit of the pope channel. We decided there was nothing else on, so we left early for the hotel. We went for a fancy Taco Bell dinner first, then drove up to LAX. There was a drunken lady weaving all over the road, but other than her, there was nothing eventful about that trip. We get to the LAX Hilton, and come to find out, there is a parking surcharge on that hotel. Its an additional $17Valet or $13 Self. This rate was not posted ANYWHERE! It was a very nice hotel. We got it through Priceline for $45. The normal rate was $109. So we got a very good deal. We checked in, and then took the room key to our room, and it didnt work. The bellguy went downstairs and returned 5 minutes later with two working keys. It was very painless and we tipped him nicely. We then realized that our 3rd floor room had a terrace, which was nice & so Naren could smoke. We then realized it was after midnight, and we needed to be up at 5am for our 8am flight. So we set our wake up call. Saturday April 2, 2005  Los Angeles en route to Puerto Rico via Newark -- We woke up what seemed to be a minute later, and then got ready for a 5:30 am checkout. We drove the rental car back, and then took that shuttle to the terminal 6. As we passed terminals 1-5 we saw lines everywhere. We were thinking that maybe we didnt give ourselves enough time. But when we got to Continental, there werent lines anywhere! Yay! We checked our bags in, and we took 2 big bags, and 2 small bags plus one diaperbag-sized bag. We carried the two small bags and the toiletries bag on ourselves. This would actually be the thing that kept us calm. Ill explain later. There were no lines for our check-in, or our security so we got to our gate in enough time. Naren and I shared a Cinnabon for breakfast. We started to board the flight, and we sat there for 20 minutes. Then the captain told us that wed be delayed because of bad weather in Newark, New Jersey. So 20 minutes turned into one hour, which turned into two hours. We thought that everything would be fine at this point because of that rain, it would also be delaying our connecting flight & in some sort of domino effect. But a 2 hour delay actually would end up being a 5 hour delay. It was now 12pm, and we asked the gate agent, Yvonne, what to do. We could have taken the next connecting flight to Puerto Rico, but we were so delayed it looked like we were going to miss that flight too. So Yvonne told us that shed pay for us to do another Continental itinerary or a non-stop LAX-Puerto Rico flight on American Airlines, but those flight itineraries wouldnt put us into Puerto Rico until 10am Sunday Morning, and our luggage couldnt be pulled off the Continental Jet. So for a few hours we sat with the real realization that we might have to cruise out of our carryon luggage until Aruba (Tuesday). But Yvonne continued to search the flights, and it turned out there were 3 flights to Puerto Rico from Newark on Sunday. The first two flights would work for us. There were no seats available. Yvonne continued to search flights for us and suddenly 3 seats opened up on the first available flight. So we booked it! We got boarding passes and seat confirmations. Now the only issue was eventually getting to New Jersey! According to policy, the luggage will take the first available flight too. So if we do miss all flights on Saturday, it will take the first flight on Sunday. Coincidentally it happened to be the flight we had just booked ourselves on. Finally we took off at 1:30! And we landed at 8:30. We had to be in some stupid holding pattern over Allentown, PA because the weather took a turn for the worse when we were en route. So we finally land in the worst landing ever. The weather was very bad. I had a feeling that wed be in Newark for a while, because this day was not going well. I took 2 blankets from the plane and put them in my carry on. When we landed we asked Continental if they could please pull our bags for us. They said they could, but this would take 3 hours, and they stopped taking requests after a while. They were tired and wanted to go home. So we asked Continental if they would provide a hotel for us because we did miss both connecting flights to Puerto Rico. We had to wait 12 hours until the 8am flight (if the weather cooperated). They refused to provide a hotel, saying that if the weather is the cause they have no legal duty to provide compensation and all the passengers misplaced would have to deal with it. We were tired and didnt want to deal with this, so we asked for blankets and pillows from the airplane, and we took our blankets, pillows and luggage and made camp in the airport. We got dinner at McDonalds, which was opened 24 hours and packed with stranded passengers. We didnt sleep well on the floor because it was cold. Sunday April 3rd, 2005  Stranded in Newark -- We got up at 4am, and stood in line for check-in for the 8am flight. We felt we had to confirm our boarding passes, seat assignments and the fact that the plane would eventually take off. We got to the gate, and fell asleep in the chair. We were woken up by the gate agent, who had confirmed my inquiry earlier whether or not this flight was going to leave on time. The plane was at the airport overnight, so that wasnt a problem. We boarded the flight. It was smooth, and we slept the entire way down to Puerto Rico. We deplaned at 1pm. The weather was cloudy and humid but not rainy, it just looked like it might rain soon. We went to the baggage claim and said a few hundred prayers. The luggage came in shifts. Our theory is that they only had 1 car, and had to take the bags in shifts. But 30 minutes later, we had our two bags. We got it, and I started crying, because I really thought the bad luck was behind us. We left the baggage area, and got a taxi. The trip to the ship is 15 minutes. It cost $18.50 for the two of us and our 5 bags. We arrived at the ship at 2:30, and gave the big bags to the porter. We took the little bags, sent them though x-ray, and then stood in the non-existent line. It was roped off by floor, and there wasnt anyone in any line. We checked in, Narens passport was confiscated, and then we were allowed to board the ship. We embarked on deck 4 forward port, and got to our room, which was deck 9 forward starboard. We looked at our watch and it was 3:30. We dont know how it took an hour, but apparently the time was already flying by. We were told the Maitre D' would only be available until 4. So we saw him on Deck 4. Second seating was completely full, and he took our names, but didnt feel he could accommodate us. We took pictures of the main dining room, then went to the Windjammer, deck 11 aft. I had Honey Chicken (amazing), ham (so-so) and pizza (very good). The lemonade was very good. We came back to the room and finally showered. We met 1 of our 2 cabin attendants. Anne Marie explained how she worked, and the hours. We asked her to empty the fridge so we could put our own stuff in there. She said no, she wouldnt do that. We asked her to put the dressers on one side of the bed so that we could actually walk around the bed. There was literally no room to walk, you had to enter the bed from the foot. She said shed have Carl move the dressers. I also asked for her to put both spare blankets on my side of the bed. This, it would turn out, never happened. Each night I had to make my own bed. We asked Anne Marie about the wine that was supposed to be in our cabin. It wasnt there. She said shed have to talk with her supervisor, and to look for the wine at dinner. We went to the pre-meet and mingle at 5:30. That was great, because we got to meet all of our cruise mates. Then we went to dinner at 6, and this was weird because we never eat this early. We didnt have our wine. We asked the Head Waiter Mohsen from Tunisia. He said that hed look into it, and I gave him the print out of the email I had between me and the Customer Service Manager at our TA. She had emailed me, confirming our wine, and that it was supposed to be in the cabin waiting for us. Mohsen came back and said that the TA ordered two bottles of wine for dinner on Saturday, and not one for the first night, Sunday. So we asked it to be spread out one bottle per night. He obliged happily. We also asked that our wine be alternated each night between red/white. The whites were better than the reds, but I like whites better. Our waiter Raj was from India. Our assistant, Clara was from the Philippines. Then at dinner we ate Tomato Soup (good), mango melon with ginger (good), fish mousse appetizer (really bad), shrimp ravioli and veggie quesadilla entrEes were both good, the prime rib was good, the rum cake was good and the white chocolate mousse with berries was very good. After dinner we went to the muster drill, which sucked because it was so hot. After the muster drill we went to our cabin, and then to the bow (to get there, go to deck 4 forward, and exit via the sliding doors onto the muster deck, turn to the forward of the ship, and take the stairs up, just keep going forward). Then we went to the welcome aboard show. That was good. The cruise director is Richard Spacey. He was really funny. Monday April 4, 2005  At Sea -- We woke up at 9:30 and our room service arrived at 9:35. We had cookies, pastries, cereal, and omelets. They were all good. The weather was perfect and sunny. Then we went to the actual Meet and Mingle, at 11:00. We had a great time, we talked and met the nice cruise mates. We got M&M goodies. Then we went to the casino. We lost money, me $60, Naren $50. Little did we know that this would also be a trend. Then we had lunch in the dining room. Naren had the BBQ Chicken Salad, and that was good. I had the Steak Sandwich which was so good! For dessert we had the Mango cheesecake, which had a mousse consistency, but was good, and the chocolate crème brule. That was very good. Then we went back to the cabin and finished unpacking. We brought along an extension cord (very helpful), a power strip (very helpful), a nightlight (inside cabin, very helpful) and an alarm clock (very, very helpful). Naren went back to the casino and lost another $20. Then he took a nap. We then went for wine tasting and that was ok. The guy was a little hard to understand through his accent, and we tasted 6 wines. It wasnt exotic. The whites were Pinot Grigio, Sav Blanc, and a chardonnay. The reds were a merlot, a Shiraz (a Spanish Terranzella). Then we got ready for formal night dinner. I wore my green saree, and am happy to say that no other woman was wearing my dress! We took the wine in our cabin to dinner. Naren had lobster bisque (ok but garlicky), chilled pear soup (good) and filet mignon (extremely tender and juicy) and chicken curry thanks to Raj. Jen had the shrimp cocktail (good), the oranges in mint chutney (good), and the filet mignon, which was very good. Dessert was the sugarless coconut layer cake which was excellent. The cherries jubilee was good. We took formal pictures, then went to the show Beetlemania. That was so awesome. They were so good. Really, dont miss this show! Then we watched the battle of the sexes/family feud. That was really funny, and the men won 50 to 20. It was the first time in 8 weeks the men won. Then we watched Karaoke Idol. There were some great singers there. Megan was awesome. Kay had a funny dance. The adult comedy show was Robby Prince. He was good and very funny. Then we went to the Cafe Promenade for a midnight snack. It was a sandwich and a pizza and a banana. They were all good. Also available were cookies and pastries. Coffee and Cocoa were also available. Then we slept, and set the alarm for Aruba at 6am. Tuesday April 5, 2005  Aruba -- We set the wake up call for 6am, but slept until 6:30 because we didnt hear the alarm. We were just that tired. The room service delivered cereal, milk, fruit, danishes and they were all good. The coffee was not. It was bitter and strong. Then we got dressed and disembarked. We got down to the 1st floor, and I forgot my Sea Pass. I went back upstairs to get it. Then we left the ship. The weather was great, and it was very windy. We got the rental car, it took a bit, but it was relatively painless. He gave us a really good island map. We stopped at a supermarket for water and the bathroom. I noticed that the back tire was low. We found a gas station, and put air in the tire. I then heard a hissing. I put my hand around the tire and felt a huge hole, about the size of a pea. We asked the gas station if he would change the tire for us. He would charge $5 to change the tire or $20 to repair the tire. We were debating about what to do, when I heard a hissing again. It was actually coming from the other back tire, and so basically our stupid rental car had two flat tires. We didnt repair the tires. We drove back and returned the keys to the guy. He voided our credit card, and we lost 2 hours in Aruba. I dont know how to advise around this situation, short of bringing a can of fix-a-flat along with you on vacation. We then went to find a taxi so that we could at least see the rest of the island. Instead we found an island tour on a 20 pax minivan bus. It was $15 per person for a 3 hour tour. That took us to places we wanted to go to anyway, so cool! We went to Big Rock. Naren climbed up and took pictures. You have to squeeze through the rocks and climb up, and I didnt want to do that. Id probably get stuck. Then we went to the Natural Bridge. That was way cool. We saw the lighthouse, and the fort used to mine gold. That was really cool too. It was here that I bought the best bag ever. It was $5 and it came in SO handy! The bus tour then drove around to Arashi beach. The driver advised it was great for snorkeling. We left the bus tour and decided to catch the bus back. Arashi Beach is probably nice for snorkeling, but for us it sucked! Its great for snorkeling if you visit via boat, and dont have to walk on the sand. There are rocks everywhere and there arent any places on the beach for soft sand/wadding. I dont recommend this beach for swimming! There were lizards and ants all over the sand. So we decided to catch this bi-hourly bus, and after 45 minutes started to think wed have to walk down to the ship ourselves. We found a local who spoke Spanish, and asked him about the bus. He said that it does eventually come, and wed have to wait. The bus driver wanted $2 per person to go back to the ship. We passed by Eagle Beach and it looked nice, and the water was beautiful, but we were so mad at the island for our day not having the best luck, that we decided to just go back to the ship and go into the swimming pool. We had lunch, and the burgers in the Windjammer were so juicy. I had a burger and a hot dog, and they were both great. Then Naren had a very juicy burger and so-so fries. The lemonade was not mixed well. Some days it was good. Other days it was not. Then we took a nap and a shower, then we played Name that Tune TV shows. We won, our score was 17/20. For our efforts we got a padlock each. Then we took our cabin wine bottle to dinner. Jen had the tropical fruit salad which was good, the spring roll which was good and the sirloin which had good flavor but was tough. Naren had the jerk chicken which was spicy and good, and the banana soup which was good. Dessert was the banana crème pie which was good and the Coffee Crème brule which was good. The Love and Marriage show was very funny. They picked the newlywed by latest time married, and the oldest couple by longest anniversary. But the middle couple was an open audition for everyone else who wanted to play. Each couple had to audition for the part. By volume of their applause the audience narrowed the 15 couples down to 2. Then the two most popular couples selected by that applause vote then competed for the most applause between them themselves. That couple was married for 7 years. After that we went to the promenade to write the days events, and met a nice guy from India, who actually grew up around Narens neighborhood. There were a lot of crew members from India on this ship! We then retired to our room and did not get up early the next morning! We did notice a sloshing sound coming from the wall next to our room. We decided it was a fluke and went to sleep. Wednesday April 6, 2005 - Curacao -- We woke up at 10am. We had little breakfast as our Midnight snack from the night before was still sustaining us. We exited the ship around noon, and walked off onto the dock. The cab to Cas Abao beach was $40 each way. And it was a 1 hour drive. We decided that we didnt want to spend that kind of money, so we decided to take the drivers advice and go to Kontiki Beach, which for the two of us was $15 each way. So we went to that beach and paid the $3 per person entry fee. They said that if we wanted a chair, it would be an extra $2.50 per chair and payable to the person on the beach, but we never found anyone taking that money. There were plenty of chairs available and it was a nice secluded cove for swimming/snorkeling. We put our stuff down, and put our masks and vests on, then headed down to the water. The temperature was nice and we started snorkeling. When the wind picked up, the water got choppy really quickly, and then the waves started crashing over the rock breakwater that formed this lagoon. Apparently its always windy in Curacao too. We were snorkeling around, and the water was pretty, but there wasnt anything much to see in this lagoon. I wouldnt recommend it, even if our day here hadnt turned tragic. Anyhow, we were snorkeling around and before we knew it, we were swimming near the rock breakwater. We tried to swim away from it, but then we realized we were caught in a rip tide/currant. No matter how hard we swam, it just took us in the opposite direction  which leads to the ocean! We tried to swim away from it, but it just literally kept moving us in the opposite direction. Narens vest made him a literal buoy and he couldnt swim away from the currant either. He found a mossy pipe which connected into these rocks, and he hung onto that. He didnt know how he was going to get up from the water. The wind was pushing the water onto the rocks, and was causing waves to crash on the rocks. I dont know how you could have held on to that rock. I yelled for help from the shore, because I couldnt hold onto this pole, it was too slippery and I was getting exhausted. Two girls jumped into the water to save me, and while they were swimming to me, a guy named Cory came out onto the rock and was communicating with us. Both Cory and the two girls were all passengers on the cruise ship there on the beach for the day. Im really glad they were there. Cory helped Naren onto the rock while the two girls (one of which was a lifeguard in her profession) swam me back into the shore. They wouldnt let me look back to Naren, but apparently Cory was helping him onto the rocks from the water. Cory saved his life. The two girls saved me, and we tried to get their name and cabin number, but they left the beach shortly after coming out of the water. So girls if youre reading this, thank you so much! When we got to the beach, the entire group of sunbathers had been watching what happened. So since we realize we didnt die, but were in very serious trouble at one point, we were very freaked out, and slightly embarrassed. Cory, while helping Naren onto the rock, had cut his foot very badly. So after learning this, we felt very bad. We tried to take him to dinner, but he asked for a bottle of wine instead. We arranged with our driver to be picked up at 2:30, and he was on time. We went back to the shopping area, to look for a Louis Vuitton bag. Carousel had nice bags, but they wouldnt sell a separate detachable strap if my bag style didnt come with it, so I didnt buy their bag. According to Naren I have enough bags already, so apparently I didnt need another one. In another store we saw a Tanzanite and Diamond pendant slide on an Omega chain that sold for $38,000! We didnt buy it! J No one store had loose topaz stones, so we went back to the ship, but there was a cargo ship leaving the area, and the bridge was opened for its passage. So we boarded this ferry which took us across to the other side of the dock. My leg had started to hurt from swimming so hard earlier that day, and so we walked slowly back to the ship. It shouldve taken 15 minutes, but it took me 30. Then we took a nap until it was time to get ready for dinner. We were hungry because we had skipped lunch and not eaten much for breakfast. So we took our cabin wine again down to the dining room. Dinner tonight was Minestrone soup (very good), strawberry bisque (great), Antipasti (weird grilled veggies and ½ entire roasted garlic bulb 12 cloves), tiger shrimp (very good), Indian Curry (good), Rigatoni Marinara with tiger shrimp on top (fabulous), Tiramisu (ok  good), Low Fat Angel Food Cake with Strawberries on top (so great!!). The crew sang O Solo Mio for us. That was really good! Then we went to the crown and anchor party. That was really nice and the rum punch wasnt as good as the sangria that was being passed around. The captain took questions from the audience. I asked when a Voyager class could come to California. He said probably in 2007. The water was rough tonight, and the ship was really rocking. The dancing show Velvet Rope was a 7. There was one theme song which was sung about 5 times during different parts of the show. That, to me, got annoying. Then we donated money to the casino. No one in our M&M group was winning, by the way! Then we took our camcorder to Quest. It was located in Studio B. This show was tooo funny! We got there at 10:15 because the doors opened at 10:30 and the show started at 10:45. We were in the front row and had a great view. The team captains remained on the ice/dance floor. We recorded it, and our team came in second. I wont say what their prize was. Then we went for a midnight snack at Johnny Rockets. We misplaced our c&a coupons for one visit. Our bill was: One diet coke $1.50, 2 shakes at $3.60 each (but they were soooo good!) and $2.81 gratuity. We ate a western cheeseburger which was awesome! Naren had a hot dog which was very good and a BLT which was good as well. The service fee was $3.20 per person, but we later found our coupon and so this charge was reversed for us. The onion rings and fries were very good too! The jukeboxes were all broken except for two, and so we had to walk to them to play songs, but then the crew started dancing to Staying Alive. That was too cool. Stanislav was a 10+. He was so good, and happy, and accommodating and just a really good waiter. I told him that Id let all of my CruiseCritic friends know that he was really nice! Tomorrow is a sea day! We hope our luck gets better. We hope we start winning in the casino. We hope that our room stewards dont keep forgetting to put the blankets on the bed!!!!! We hope they tilex the shower soon, as there is mildew growing in the bottom! The cabins pipes are still sloshing, and would slosh every night! DO NOT GET CABIN 9253! We ran into Jeannie, who said her brothers cabin shower never did ever get fixed. I dont know where he showered. The maintenance crew was called, but it never did get fixed. Perhaps she can explain more about that. Thursday April 7, 2005  At Sea -- We set the alarm for 9, but decided that we didnt want to wake up. So we eventually got up at 11:15. We saw that ice skating ended at 1:15, so we got up and put long pants on with socks. We went ice skating first (or Ice Walking, in Narens case). We signed our waver and went 3 or 4 times around the ice. Then we went to lunch. Naren had the Nicoise salad which was good. He said it was potato salad, egg, anchovy, and lettuce and olives. He liked everything except the potatoes themselves. He had the corn chowder and said it was good. It was definitely better than my black bean soup. He had the Italian wrap. He said it was good, but wasnt very hungry. I had the Orange Chicken, and it was ok  good. It wasnt Asian tasting at all, but it did have good flavor. The iced tea was good. The cherry pie was very good! The low sugar orange mousse was also very good. After lunch Naren donated more money to the casino. Then we went to the Card Room and played Chinese checkers and chicken foot. We left because it was getting loud because the entire card room was booming with the Spanish shoutings of two very loud Puerto Rican women! Im not saying theres anything against being from PR, but there were so many PR people on the ship that all announcements were also in Spanish, and they even had events (like trivia and the love and marriage show) in Spanish for those guests. It didnt deter me from having a good time. It was just something I noticed. Oh yeah, how did I know they were from PR and not another Spanish speaking country? Because when one of the comedians asked who was from where, he asked if there were any PR residents onboard and ½ of the lyric theatre went wild! Go Figure! Then we went to the swing dance class. That was lots of fun and it brought back dance steps we learned while we took dance lessons for our wedding. Naren then went back to the Casino and didnt win anything! I got ready for dinner, but didnt get dressed in my saree yet. I wanted to get a good seat for the ice show. So we went to the ice show wearing our casual clothes and most other people were already wearing their formal stuff. We had Portofino reservations tonight, so our dinner didnt start at 6, it was 7:30 instead! So after the ice show which was such a great show (dont miss the ice show), we went to the cabin and got ready for dinner. I draped my saree with Narens help and it turned out very good. We then took our portraits and then went to Portofinos for dinner. We brought our cabin wine, and they wouldnt believe us that we had received this gift from our TA and the corkage fee was waived. I told them they needed to talk to Mohsen, and they did. But he was gone for 20 minutes, and in this 20 minute timeframe, we werent offered bread or water. We sat there looking dumb. But once he came back with our wine, he brought the bread with the dipping items (chopped tomatoes, an olive paste, and a tuna salad). They were all very, very good! The waiter had too many tables too. He was very busy and it was difficult to get good service in the first 2/3 of the meal. But once all the other people left, our service greatly improved. During dinner, we were treated to a rain storm with lightning. For dinner we had the Tiger Shrimp with Risotto (very good), Goat Cheese Souffle (very good), tenderloin wit pieces of parmesan (not what I expected, tenderloin was blood rare and very thin & it didnt taste like tenderloin, it looked like pepperoni), Lobster pieces in Pasta (good, the peas and veggies were good), Filet Mignon (very, very good) and I had the filet with the Tiger Shrimp (also very good). Dessert was the hazelnut meringue (so great, melted in your mouth), and the buttermilk panna-kota (so-so . . . youre going to have to ask Naren what this was & it had grapefruit pieces in it), and I had the chocolate flourless cake (tasted like fudge, it was so good!). Then we went to the dance show Cant stop the rock. It was a good show. It highlighted the songs from all of the greatest movies from the last 60 years. But there were no songs from Saturday Night Fever or Grease or big hits like that. Instead they had slightly obscure songs. No one could figure out their reasoning for this. Maybe they didnt have permission to use the really good songs. Then immediately after the show, we went to take pictures of the gala buffet. But they were closing it, and rushed us out of the dining room. We tried to explain that the show JUST ended, but the waiter didnt care. Then we went to the cabin and went to sleep. Friday April 8, 2005  St. Maarten -- We got up at 9, and went to the Windjammer for breakfast. We were silently saying a prayer that our next port would be much better than the last ports! The food here was the normal breakfast buffet stuff. It was good. The oatmeal had no taste. The coffee was getting better. Maybe Naren diluted it when I wasnt looking. He had the French toast and said it was very good. The breakfast potatoes were good, but the tater tots were a little crunchy. The cranberry juice was good, and a welcome change from the usual orange juice. Now if I only brought my SoCo and my Sweet lime, I could make Scarlet OHaras. Anyhow - I went up to the top deck and filmed the beautiful water and surrounding dock area while Naren finished getting ready. We then exited the ship at 10:30 and walked into the pier area. There we went to the taxi area, and shared a taxi to Maho Beach. This drive took 40 minutes because there was some traffic. But it was $7 per person, per way. We arrived at the beach at 11-11:15. It was a very nice day, not very breezy and we were dropped off at this hotel. To get to Maho Beach they said to go through their lobby, and then down to the water. But you could also just have followed the road around, because the beach came out on the other side of the hotel, and you didnt have to walk in the sand & thats hard to walk in. The sand was very soft, and there werent any rocks in the beach part that we were in. There were a few rocks, and you could definitely see them, but if you walk down toward the restaurant there on the beach, youll get clear of them. The water was warm, and beautiful, and we spread our blanket out and had a great view of the runway, and the approaching planes as they came into the airport. We sat on the beach on our sheet with our towels and cameras and suntan lotion. That sun is hot and powerful. It wasnt very humid at all. In fact, the taxi driver was saying that the island is going through a drought and there hasnt been much rain to speak of. To keep cool, we kept our t-shirts on, and got them wet in the water, and this helped keep us cool. No we didnt get farmer tans. I actually burned through my shirt and lotion. But I imagine that it could have been much worse. There are many little planes (turboprops) and theyre cool to see landing so close to you, but the REAL show comes when the jets land. We had two American Airlines Boeing 767 jets land there, and one US Airways Boeing 757 land right over our heads! That was so amazing! If you do this activity, please be advised that when the jet has finished flying over you, the jet thrust will blow the sand all over the place and this will hurt. You can minimize this by putting your head down, so at least you dont get sand in your face. Oh yeah, and lay on your belongings, because theyll get blown into the water too. When the AA 767 took off, the sand blew so hard and actually knocked a kid into the water. It blew peoples belongings into the water, and made the sand stick to us where we had applied the suntan lotion. It was so awesome! We left Maho at 1:45 because we wanted to get some shopping in. So we asked the driver to take us to the shopping area. The taxi ride was $14 for us both He took us to Front Street where there were hundreds of jewelry stores and diamond stores. We were looking for blue topaz so that we could get earrings to match my pendant. I didnt take my pendant, but we made a good choice. So we purchased two 12 carat pear shaped London blue topaz stones, so I can get them set into earrings. Theyre beautiful! So we shopped for about 2 hours. Then we took a taxi back to the ship. That was $3 per person, and only took about 10 minutes because our driver was coming close to hitting pedestrians and then when it came time to turn right, he actually cut some guy off (or was it that the guy let him in?) and so we didnt have to wait in the line of cars waiting to turn. I thought it was pretty slick and saved us about 15 minutes. Then we were taken back to the taxi area, and I stopped into this other jewelry store. I was about to buy this other pair of Rainbow Topaz earrings, but the guy wanted too much money for a stone that is just heat treated white topaz. Geez, its not like its Tanzanite! Anyhow, then we went back to the ship, and the liquor was so cheap here. For 1 liter, it was $9. That was for most liquors. We actually regretted not purchasing it, because it wasnt this cheap in St. Thomas. This is a quote from Naren, I think Grey Goose was $12-ish whereas in US it is $20 but don't quote me on that, I don't remember. I do remember Absolute was $9 (US $20), Baileys was $15 (US$27-35). Then we boarded the ship at 4:30, and went for a shower to get the sand off of us. While showering, and making sure the sand was going down the drain, I noticed this black stuff on the bottom tiles of our shower. I know what it is, and couldnt figure out why our cabin attendant would allow mildew to grow in our shower. I didnt think anything of it until I found a fungus in my toe later that night. Nice hua? After showing for dinner we went to play Name that Tune, TV shows from the ancient world. We totally sucked! I didnt watch TV in the 60s because I wasnt alive then! Anyhow, we left while they were scoring the sheets because we had to go to dinner and we know we didnt win! Tonight was Lobster night, but its disguised as Fishermans Plate. Just to be sure we didnt book Portofinos on a night when they had lobster, we asked Raj when Lobster would be coming. He advised Friday night. But we looked at the capers-on-tv tv channel, and only found Fishermans Plate. So they try to trick you ! J Anyhow, we had the salmon appetizer which was very good, the wild mushroom pastry which was excellent!, the pear soup with strawberries which was ok to good, and the Caesar salad which was ok. Naren said the lobster had two different consistencies, but it was good. He gave it a 7, and had 2 tails. The prime rib was a 9 tonight. Oh wow it was so good! Narens Indian food tonight was chicken curry and it was mild and just ok. Its the thought that counts. They sang to us tonight for our anniversary, and brought the candle in a dessert from the menu. Tonights desserts were a sample plate, 3 items on one plate. They were chocolate flourless cake (like in Portofinos & so good!), cheesecake (I thought it was good, light and airy. Naren thought it was ok), and some rum cake thing (I thought it was gross, Naren loved it). The low sugar strawberry desert was very good. We left and got our formal night pictures. They came out very good. Then we went to the casino and lost our sorry-tushes again!!!!! Then we went to the show and Tony Tillman was good. He had great energy and put on a good show. Then we came home and prepared for immigration tomorrow. Some general thoughts for today were: Richard Spaceys dancing is funny. The camcorder never fogged, but it wasnt very humid on this trip in any of the ports, it was VERY windy though. The pipe water is still swishing and swished every dang night. The guest relations desk said that they were doing maintenance on the pipes, but it continued every night! The extension cord came in handy because it was used to put the alarm clock next to the bed. The seas were very rough on the cruise and the staff said that the seas had been more rough in the past 3 weeks. Go figure. Oh yeah, and why cant the room steward remember that I wanted both blankets on the bed. I reminded him daily, and he never seemed to remember! What was wrong with him, really? In the dining room, instead of coffee, I got cocoa every night. It was great, and there wasnt a charge. Saturday April 9, 2005  St. Thomas/St. John -- We woke up at 6, and were out of bed at 6:30. We were ready to go at 6:40. We read in the compass that the line for immigration started at 7, and when we went down to deck 5 (for US Citizens) and deck 4 (for everyone else), there was already a line! At 7:00 the line moved fast. When the officer looked at my information they didnt investigate the fact that my passport page is in my maiden name, and the cruise card was in my married name. If they wanted to look at the last passport page, theyd see it was amended, but they never investigated that. So much for security. So any Jennifer can take my passport? So after immigration, I went to the pursers desk to turn in the lost Johnny Rockets coupons. She said theyd be applied to the account. We also turned in the departure card, which they asked for 3 different times. Oh well. Maybe their dog ate the cards we kept turning in. Then I went back to the cabin and Naren was already there. So we got ready for St. Thomas and left for the windjammer. The waffles were dry. The OJ was watered down now. Perhaps they ran out of concentrate? The doughnut was good. The round potato tots (hash browns) were so crunchy when you put your fork into them, the ½ flew across the room. It was pretty funny. The fruit and the normal potatoes were very good. The coffee was strong again. We went to deck 1 and disembarked at 8:15. The weather was warm, sunny, and bright and beautiful. We told the taxi people we wanted red hook at 9am. They put us into this open air taxi with 10 other people all going to red hook. When we sat in this dang taxi for another 15 minutes, we all started to get anxious. We kept shouting at him to GO but only the lord knows what he was waiting for. Not anymore people could fit into our taxi, and we all wanted to go to the same place. Finally at 8:40 we were off. Now imagine Mr. Toads Wild Ride! We were cutting people off, and weaving in and out of traffic, and exceeding the speed limit by 20 mph. It literally felt like a roller coaster. We were all having a good time on the way over there, and were at red hook at 9:01! So what should have taken 30 minutes took only 20. Woo hoo! We paid $8 for each person for this ride. Naren bought the ferry tickets at $7 each person. We stood in line and there were 100 people already in line, and there was no shade for us. We were getting baked under the sun. It was now getting pretty hot. The ferry came and all 250 of us loaded the ferry. I dont think they could have held any more people, and the ferry was 15 minutes late. It took 20 minutes to get to St. John. The channel water was very rough. The ferry was moving about and was sort of scary at times. We got to St. John and got into another taxi for Trunk bay. That taxi $7 each person, each way. At the park, the entrance fee is another $4 per person. IT IS WORTH EVERY PENNY! We arrived at 10:00. The water is so gorgeous and the sand is so soft and the water is so blue and warm. There arent any waves to crash on you, and you can go out into trunk bay about 30 feet from the shore and still be in waste high water, and youll be able to see your feet! We loved it here. We got into the water and just frolicked around for a few hours. I wish we didnt ever have to leave. There was a snorkeling area over to the side, but after our fiasco in Curacao, we didnt want to snorkel. There was a lifeguard, but only up until a certain point on the beach. They did have a snack shop, showers and lockers. I believe there was a place to rent the snorkel stuff, but we didnt do that. We left Trunk Bay at 12:45, and we showered before catching the taxi. We made it to the dock with time to spare for the 1:00 ferry. The ferry dock contains the embarkation for the Charlotte Amalie and Red Hook ferries. The Red Hook ferry left first. Then the Charlotte Amalie ferry left and the water was so rough. WE finally made it, and docked across the water from the cruise ships. I looked all around the islands, and finally found mallorca pearls. So once we bought them, We looked around the shopping area, but then took a taxi to the ship for $3 each. We had to walk the entire length of the Celebrity Horizon and the RCCL Adventure on the docks, so this took 5-10 minutes. We got back on board the ship, and went to the promenade for our snack. The pizza was very good, and the desserts were chocolate pecan pie which was good, and the vanilla pound cake was fabulous! The chiabatta sandwich was good. We rested, showered for dinner, and found two bottles of wine in our cabin. We dont understand how this happened, but we took both bottles to our table and shared them with our table mates. We really had great conversation every night, and met the nicest people, so we were happy to share with them. Dinner this night was shrimp cocktail (good), chilled strawberry buttermilk soup (sour but good), spinach dip (very good), Caesar salad (good), pumpkin soup (tasted like chicken, but good), tri tip of beef (very, very good), Indian entrée (very good) and I had cornbread which was very moist. There was singing which was good. We went to the casino and lost AGAIN! We then saw the farewell variety show, which was a good show. Then at 10:00 we thought wed better pack because it had to be out before 12! I might get flamed here, but whatever. We have NEVER had our luggage out by 12! There has also always been luggage in our hallway until at least 2. So we decided that wed make an effort, and lo and behold, at 12:15 we were finished! Not bad for two hours, eh? We then set our alarm for the morning. Sunday April 10, 2005  Back into Puerto Rico -- Our pipes sloshed all throughout the night. I really had my issues with this cabin! We got up at 7:30 and were ready by 8:20. We went to the dining room, because they were open for breakfast until 9. We had Raj again for our waiter. That was nice. I had the classic breakfast and Naren had the French toast. He said it was very good. The orange juice was very concentrated and was great once diluted. As Naren and I were sitting there eating our breakfast, two Indian waiters pass by talking to each other and according to Naren were venting disgruntled anger about how another waiter was doing his job. It was in Hindi, but still, didnt they think that someone would be able to understand them? Or was it that they were so frustrated, they didnt care? We werent offended, we just were curious what the other waiter had done to make them so mad. Then we took our disembarkation number, and realized that it might be a little late for our 1:30 flight. It was fine, we could get another number, we just couldnt get the first disembarkation group number. But they were on group 4 anyway. So she gave us group 5, which was better than group 10. A number 10 would have put us off the ship at 11. So anyway, we decided to exit the ship, and wed already gone through immigration when we were in St. Thomas yesterday, so we showed our customs form to this officer, and then went into the luggage room. I snagged a porter, and we were off. 20 minutes later we had our cab, and were off to the airport. It was $20 to get us there. Continentals line was huge. But it moved quickly because they kept adding gate agents and there was electronic check in. The dude printed out the sticky luggage tags, and boarding passes, but we checked ourselves in. Then we went to stand in the security line and this is where the day took a turn for the worst. I still had that fungus thing on my toe thanks to the mold in our shower. I didnt want to take my shoe off and walk around in the airport. Also, please add this to the SEVERE sunburn that we received on trunk bay. I took off my left shoe, but kept the right one on. They x-rayed my stuff, but asked that I take my shoe off. I said, no, hand wand me. Apparently in Puerto Rico that means take your wand and put it into my butt crack. I raised my arms as much as I could. But my shoulders didnt want to cooperate, and this means Im a terrorist. Any idiot could see what I was dealing with as my face was peeling too. So, she takes my other shoe (right shoe) and insists this has to go with the other shoe through the scanner together. Fine, ok! So Im standing there with my foot up, and they cant understand what Im doing. I told them again I had an infection on my toe and wasnt going to put my foot down. She finally gave me back my shoes after not finding anything. Surprise! Then told me to spread my legs. This is when she put her wand through my legs, and then up my butt crack. When I flinched, she got mad. I told her not to stick that thing IN my butts, and she didnt listen. Her supervisor came over and told her I was cooperating, and to let me go. Naren was getting really pissed at me, for making her job so hard. I really didnt care at this point. Finally she let me go, but then called me a really bad name in Spanish. I can understand her, so I turned back to her, and said in her language Just because Im not from here, doesnt mean I cant understand you, weirdo. Then we left, but Naren was mad at me. I did have an attitude with her, but to be 4th grade about this, she started it. Apparently you cant have an infection and a sunburn when going through security. God, I hate the airport. We went to our gate, and our flight was actually 45 minutes late because there was a flat tire on the airplane. They said it was the jetway, but not one person had the same story. They asked for volunteers to stay behind. But that means Id have to get goosed by the security again, I didnt want to do that. My shoulders hurt so bad, I took my bra straps down. That helped somewhat. What didnt help was a very crowded flight. There just isnt a lot of room on planes and the flights are long! We finally took off, and barely made our connecting flight. I was really worried about our luggage. But we took off, and this flight was crowded too. Our seats didnt recline, and the people in front of us, their seats reclined 1 ½ seats worth of room. So that really sucked. I leaned forward and used her back of the chair as a pillow. Yeah, it was that tight. We landed, we got our luggage quickly as it was the first bags off the carousel. Im thinking they just made the plane! We got our rental car, and when Hertz realized what happened in Aruba, they gave us an SUV upgrade. Damn gas guzzling car! But it was a very nice car with all the buttons on the other side of the car. Anyhow we got home at 2am on Monday morning. Since we just bought a house, now we get to move in! Im still working on getting the pictures up. Im hoping to have them up by this weekend. Ill post again when theyre ready for viewing! We didnt have kids, so we didnt do the Adventure Ocean activities. We didnt do any ship excursions, and our folio was $200. We tipped accordingly for the services. Raj and Clara were great. Carl and Anne Marie were not! They still got money, but not as much as they would have, had they just MADE THE BED LIKE ID REQUESTED (repeatedly). Richard Spacey was great. The captain was also very personable. We liked him very much. The ship is gorgeous. We had a great second half of the cruise once our luck in ports turned around. Our luck in the casino, however, never did turn around. We didnt loose a lot of money, but found it odd that we never won anything. Any questions? Ill try to answer them (if I havent already). If youd like you can send me an email at lephysteria@yahoo.com. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2005
A little about us: We are an extended family of 14, 7 kids, ranging in age from 3-14, and 7 adults. This is the 6th cruise for two of the passengers, and the 3rd for the rest of the group. Embarkation: We stayed at the Embassy Suites on ... Read More
A little about us: We are an extended family of 14, 7 kids, ranging in age from 3-14, and 7 adults. This is the 6th cruise for two of the passengers, and the 3rd for the rest of the group. Embarkation: We stayed at the Embassy Suites on Saturday night. We arranged for taxi pickup at 10:45 a.m. to take us to the pier. We arrived at the cruise pier around 11 - perfect timing! There was no line. We were able to check-in our family of 14 (7 cabins) quickly. They seated us in the waiting area according to our arrival time, and we were at the back of the first group to board. The wait wasn't bad at all - we watched them load food onto the ship, and dump a case of milk cartons! I guess that's why they have nets beneath the loading platform. We were boarding the ship by noon. Dining: For dinner, we were split into two tables in the Vivaldi Dining Room. Six older kids at one table, and the adults and three-year old at the other. This worked out beautifully. Service was excellent. We especially applaud the head waiter. On previous cruises, we never even knew who our head waiter was. On this cruise, he introduced himself on the first night. A few of the adults mentioned that they especially liked shrimp cocktail and mango. He made sure that we had 2 plates of sliced mango each night. He also provided shrimp cocktail appetizers, even when it wasn't on the menu. For breakfast, we usually ate at the Windjammer - typical breakfast fare, and the menu remains the same all week. The omelet station is recommended, but it can get crowded if you don't go early. Also, they seemed to run out of some foods throughout the week. For example, there were no mushrooms for omelets after the first couple of days. Other days, there was no shrimp, even though it was on the printed menu. We ordered room service breakfast one morning - got a call at 7 a.m. - no orange juice, no French toast, no egg beaters. We wrote in French toast, so I couldn't complain about that; but no orange juice?!? It was a little strange. Lunch was acceptable at the buffet, and excellent the one day we ate in the dining room. Our head waiter convinced us that RCCL was trying out a new program, trying to get people in and out in 30 minutes. Our one sample took us over an hour, but we weren't rushing, and our nephew (14 yrs) was attempting to order two of everything on the menu. :) Our group loved Johnny Rockets, the alternative burger joint. The burgers tasted better than those at the buffet (probably just because they were fresh), and the shakes and malts got high marks as well. Dinner was very good, overall. There was never a meal that we didn't like, and some we loved. As usual, there were no problems getting seconds, or thirds. We were even able to get small portions of some meals, which we were never able to do before. In the past, asking to try something from one dish got you the entire dinner sized portion with all the sides. Public Rooms -- The public rooms were beautiful. This is the biggest ship we've ever been on, but it certainly didn't seem it. Even though the ship was full (or close to it), we never felt the crowds. It was laid out very well, so walking from one end to the other was never a chore. Most other ships had a midlevel deck that does not allow access all the way through. The AoS had this on the 3rd deck, meaning it was easy to cross from one end of the ship to the other from any of the main public areas. The Promenade -- This is the giant mall-like area in the middle of the ship. It looked gorgeous, and had a lot to see. There were (of course) various bars and shops, but also the coffee shop, which served food from early in the morning (pastries) to late at night (pizza, sandwiches, and dessert). This took the place of a midnight buffet (there is only one on this cruise). The food line could get a little crowded at night, but it was always a great place to stop. Coffee and tea are constantly available here, and except for specialty coffee drinks, Ben and Jerry's, and milkshakes, all the food and regular coffee is included. The Bar Scene -- In keeping with the rest of the ship layout, the many bars helped to give this huge ship a cozy, yet never crowded feeling. The bars were everywhere, located in various nooks, and all with a different decor. We never saw one that was mobbed, and were always able to sit down and have a relaxing drink. Our favorites for decor were Jesters (adult night club) and the Aquarium bar. Entertainment -- Maybe we've been on too many cruises, and are tired of seeing the same shows over and over. The comedians especially seem incredibly redundant. Incredibly redundant. Yes, toilets can be scary. Yes, we eat a lot of food on the cruise. Yes, the showers are small. After a while, you feel like you've heard it all before. We sat in the Mezzanine in the back so that we could escape without disturbing the entertainers. We were usually gone within 15 minutes. We didn't even make it to the highly-touted ice show. Activities -- The ship seemed to shift priorities. Past ships focused on the entertainment. On this Voyager class ship, it seemed that the ship was the focus. Sure, they had shows, but we skipped the shows and were never bored. Bars, lounges, basketball court, gym, rock climbing, dancing, miniature golf, 24 hour pools and hot tubs, a movie theater . . . there was something to do for every preference. Fitness & recreation -- The fitness center is phenomenal. There are plenty of treadmills and elliptical for everyone! The view is gorgeous. Although we didn't use it as often as we would've liked, it was fun when we did. And they are pretty good at keeping kids from playing on the machines. Minimum age is 16, and I saw it enforced several times. Cabin -- We had a balcony cabin on deck 8. It was a great location, right in the middle of the ship. We've stayed in inside and outside cabins previously - balcony is the best. The kids were in Promenade inside cabins across from their parents. These are the best inside cabins I've ever seen. At least you have a window, and can view the promenade. It makes the inside cabin a lot less claustrophobic. Service -- The room steward team was excellent, as is typical for a RCCL cruise. Wednesday was my birthday, and she decorated the room with balloons. She also made a person on the bed out of our clothes, sneakers and sunglasses. It was a nice surprise. We had no complaints about the service. Shore Excursions -- We booked all of our own excursions. See below for details. Kids Program -- The older kids (ranging in age from 9 – 14) had mixed feelings about the kids club. They usually went, but rarely stayed the whole time. They were given sign out privileges, which is a nice bonus for the parents. It is obviously harder to hold the interest of teenagers than it is to do so with the younger kids. Still, they made a lot of friends, and usually had a new face to hang out with on the ship. The 3 year old loved the camp, and cried when she had to leave each day. The camp hours made it easy. The kids sat at dinner for the first hour of early seating, and then ran off, leaving the adults to eat at a more leisurely pace. (I am sure RCCL purposely serves the children faster). The Itinerary: Most of the group chose to either stay on the ship or go shopping. My husband and I are divers and adventurous, so we booked all of our own excursions. It was a treat that every port docked rather than tendered. That made it much easier to come and go on as we pleased. St. Thomas -- We booked a dive with Blue Island Divers (http://www.blueislanddivers.com/). They picked us up at the front of the dock. Unfortunately, the AoS was the third ship docked, and we got off at the aft. We wound up walking the length of three cruise ships, each carrying full bags of diving gear. We reckoned it was about ¾ of a mile to walk. Once there, the boat was right on time. We thought the service was good. We had no problems, and they didn’t do anything over the top either. We had two nice dives, and would dive with them again. After, we walked around the shops right at the port. Alcohol, jewelry, and t-shirt shops – repeat as necessary. Saint Maarten -– We planned a family beach day. We did a lot of pre-cruise internet research, and decided on Kakoa beach. We piled into a cab to go to Orient beach (roughly $7 pp). We asked for Kakoa beach, but the taxi driver acted confused and dropped us off at Bikini beach. It turns out, that it is one long beach, with different bars/operators lined up every 50 ft. We walked past Bikini beach and quickly found Kakoa. For the 13 people, we rented two umbrellas and 4 chairs – total price approx $50. We spent most of the time in the water, so we didn’t need that much. The beach is one of the best we’ve ever been on. White sand, calm turquoise water . . . everyone agreed that it was the best excursion. We did see some nudity on the clothed side of the beach, so warn your kids. We returned to the ship around 1, had lunch, and ventured out to do some shopping. We took the water taxi over to the town ($5 pp for all day riding). The town reminded us of old San Juan, with its small streets and mixture of shops. On the way back to the ship, we stopped at Fat Tuesday’s on the pier for a few drinks. Now, we’ve been to New Orleans, and like the FT drinks, and these were not the same – not much variety and not very strong. We also tried a drink at one of the bars in town – not impressed! Antigua -– A non diving day. We booked Eli’s Eco Tour. It was a long day, but a very unique tour. We hiked, snorkeled, rock climbed, and got a tour of the island. We enjoyed this one. This took an entire day, so we didn’t get much of a chance to see the town. There are plenty of reviews of Eli’s tour – it was just as expected. The only disappointment was that we didn’t meet Eli himself. Our solo tour guide was Ebbe, who did a fine job. St. Lucia -– Booked dives with Dive Fair Helen (http://www.divefairhelen.com/). We loved this dive operator. They took such good care of us, from setting up equipment, to personalized dive master attention, to an excellent, hot lunch on the boat. My husband (dive buddy) struggled with equalizing, and took longer than usual to get to depth. Dive Master Grail grabbed my hand and led me around the dive site, while keeping an eye on Steve’s progress. Grail stuck by my side throughout the dive, which gave Steve a chance to take pictures and not worry about being a watchful buddy. I HIGHLY recommend Dive Fair Helen for a tour in St. Lucia. Again, we got back late and didn’t look around the city much. Barbados -– We pre-arranged pickup and with The Dive Shop LTD (http://www.divebds.com). Finding the pickup point can be confusing. If you make arrangements with a private operator, make a left out of the mall area, walk past the cars, and exit the cruise ship customs area. After wandering around in the terminal for a few minutes, we walked outside the terminal, and found Haroon waiting for us. He was nice enough, telling us about Barbados holidays as we drove to the shop. When we arrived, there were 2 people there already, with gear already set up. I felt uncomfortable when I found out that they arrived at the dive shop much earlier, and were basically waiting for us to start diving. I just got the impression that other divers were PO’d that they had to wait until we got there and set-up before they could go diving. The service here was the complete opposite of our experience in St. Lucia. No one spoke to us, or explained anything. We figured out where to get tanks, and set up our gear. When we were finished, we carried our gear across the beach to a small boat. It took about 15 minutes to arrive at the dive site. At some point, everyone started gearing up. Again, nothing was said. The DM gave a short briefing, then jumped in. Before we knew it, the other divers jumped in, and we were (again!) the last two. There was no one there to help us get off the boat and into the water. Usually, the boat captain or another DM will assist. In this case, the captain was up top, and we were left to our own devices. I struggled with my equipment, and wound up aborting the dive because I just did not feel comfortable. We returned to the shop, and got most of our $$ back. We did not do the 2nd dive, and we returned to the ship via taxi. It was a holiday week, so the 3 mile drive took almost an hour! Overall, our diving experience in Barbados was not good. I would recommend either diving with the cruise ship or trying another operator. It was not easy to find a recommended shop on the web beforehand. Overall Experience on AoS -- Overall, we had an excellent vacation. The 5 island itinerary probably wasn’t the best for a large family. They most likely would have liked a private island or two, but the ship had enough to do to make up for it. The food was good, the service excellent, and the ship itself spectacular. We have never done the same ship twice, but wouldn’t hesitate to book a Voyager class ship again in the future. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2005
This was our second cruise and most likely the last. First of all I found the room attendant to be kind of cold, the main dinning room servers were also somewhat distant and on the night before the tip day he asked if everything was okay ... Read More
This was our second cruise and most likely the last. First of all I found the room attendant to be kind of cold, the main dinning room servers were also somewhat distant and on the night before the tip day he asked if everything was okay and were we happy with their level of service. I only ate there 3 times as the food was little in portion and not to our liking a lot of beef and chicken. I fould the Windjammer buffet to have a better selection. I prefer to see more Fish and Pork The Cabin: rugs were in need of a cleaning. Bathroom stunk of urine and around the third 3 day me and some of our 19 friends that booked with us had sore throats and coundn't hardly speak. Questioning the air quality in the room. The Entertainment: (Velvet Rope stunk slept through it) the Ice,comic and Kerioke idol were really good. Port of calls : Were great for the exception of Aruba where we did baby beach which was good snorkeling but there was nothing there. 1 little beer stand. Pool activities : They had the Belly flop contest which is alway one of my favorites and the Horse races was also a blastI guess in a nutshell the novelty wore out for me and my Family. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2005
Embarkation: Our direct Continental flight from Newark, NJ arrived at approximately 10:30 am. We arrived at the port via taxi (approximately $17.00 for 2 people by 11:15 am). There are plenty of taxis available, don't take the bus. ... Read More
Embarkation: Our direct Continental flight from Newark, NJ arrived at approximately 10:30 am. We arrived at the port via taxi (approximately $17.00 for 2 people by 11:15 am). There are plenty of taxis available, don't take the bus. You have to wait around and it's more expensive than a cab. The cab fare is agreed upon and documented before you leave the airport. No negotiation is necessary. It's about a 15 minute drive. We were on the boat and in our rooms by 12:00 noon. Embarkation was a breeze -- no complaints here! We spent the rest of the afternoon exploring the boat, eating lunch, and unpacking. Our luggage arrived before dinner, but it's a good idea to pack a few items in your carry on so you can freshen up and get changed into new clothes. Some people did not receive their luggage until later that evening. Staff: Everyone was extremely friendly, helpful, and willing to do anything to please. Many of the people were wonderful and we were hugging goodbye and taking photos at the end of the cruise. They easily deserve a 6 out of 6 rating. Agenda: Boat departed San Juan on Sunday night at 10 pm. We visited St Thomas on Monday, St Maarten - Tues, Antigua - Wed, St Lucia - Thurs and Barbados - Friday, followed by a day at sea on Saturday. We were at each island from 7:30 am to 5:30 pm. Returned to San Juan on Sunday. This was a fantastic agenda. We spent enough time at each port and were able to explore many of the islands. Here's a brief bio on what we did at each port: St Thomas: Went to Magen's Bay. 20 minute drive / transportation available near the ship. It was ranked as one of the top 10 beaches in the world (it's nice, but I don't necessarily agree). It was a relaxing day at the beach. A perfect way to start a vacation. The water is clear and calm. Beach gets very crowded in the afternoon, so it's worth the 5-10 minute walk to get away from the crowd. There isn't much to do here besides hang out and catch some sun, but it is very beautiful. St Maarten: Went out on our own jet skiing at the Great Bay Resort, a 10 minute cab ride from the boat. I would recommend going to the Divi Little Bay Resort instead - it looked a lot nicer. It was fun to jetski within viewing distance of the cruise ship. We felt like the people on the RC commercial - zooming on their jetskis near the ship. It was a fun day. No one from the resort seemed to mind that we came to their beach and used the facilities. Seemed like a laid back place. It is the middle of a renovation though. Antigua - Went on a snorkeling & kayak eco-adventure & booked through Royal Caribbean. (Website: http://www.antiguapaddles.com/) The people who ran the tour were amazing and very knowledgeable about the island. Make sure you are fit and healthy to go on this tour. It required a lot of physical exertion. (hiking, swimming, and lots of paddling!) But a lot of fun. St. Lucia - We didn't have anything planned that day, but met a man selling this tour in the port area. He was holding a sign with beautiful pictures of the island. We took a chance and went for $50.00 per person. (We think they sold this through the ship for $80+ per person) Went on a boat to visit a waterfall, the Pitons, an active volcano, and Marigot Bay. They also took us further out into the ocean to look for dolphins. About 15-20 dolphins "played" with us while we circled them. They did flips and tricks and looked like they were having so much fun! The dolphin visit alone was worth the $$. A great way to see all of St Lucia in a few hours. Barbados - Our favorite island and tour by far. (I visited Barbados before and did a Jeep 4x4 tour. A great way to see the whole island in a half day.) This time, we did a snorkeling and catamaran trip, booked through Royal Caribbean. (The tour was called Ocean Adventures -- http://oceanadventures.bb/) We snorkeled with the turtles, saw a shipwreck, and docked at a beach. The turtles were amazing to see and touch. The shipwreck had thousands of beautiful fish. The sand was like flour and had the cleanest water ever! Best of all, we were close to the ship and didn't require a lot of driving time (less than 5 minutes). The boat (Silvermoon 2) was gorgeous! They also do private charters for large groups. I highly recommend! Food: The food was better than I imagined. The only disappointment was the lobster -- it was not a high quality. We enjoyed all of the meals and there was plenty of variety. We went to Johnny Rocket's once during the trip. Our bill was about $15.00, similar to what we would normally pay at home! There was never really a line to eat there. Alcohol: One word -- expensive. Try to sneak some on the ship. Our dinner table mates did it with no problem. An absolute and cranberry was $6.84 each. Two daiquiris were $16.00. We definitely held back from drinking due to the high price. They charge a $12.00 corking fee on top of the price for a bottle of wine. Other passengers: I was a little scared from other posts about how the other passengers might behave. The only problem we encountered were spoiled, rude American children who were unsupervised. Parents, please watch your brats! I imagine that the parents let them wreak havoc because they are on a boat and would never get lost. I would have liked to see more couples our age (20s and 30s), but the main population were families and seniors. Kids were pushing to get on elevators and were waking people up in the quiet adults only pool area. Overall: We had an excellent time and would love to cruise again. It was wonderfully relaxing and I would consider cruising again in a heartbeat. RC staff were excellent. Don't miss the ice show! All of the facilities were well kept, clean and comfortable. The ship really became our home away from home. It was easy to navigate, no sea sickness. The beds weren't the best, but we always got a great night of sleep. The best part of this cruise was the agenda and the islands we visited. We had a lot of time in port versus the other ships. Complaints: Drink prices (soda is not included and you have to purchase a soda package for $41.00 per person). Good news is that you get juice for free at breakfast, iced tea and lemonade for lunch/dinner. If we knew that, we wouldn't have purchased the soda package. Rock wall and ice skating were open for VERY limited hours and usually had to sign up beforehand. SPA prices were insane. I am used to NJ/NYC prices, but these were even higher. Even the "specials" were overpriced. To play BINGO it was $35.00 per session. (5 games / 6 punch cards per game) Royal Caribbean is definitely making out on this deal & are pocketing most of the $$. SEA DAY: I am very happy there was only one day at sea -- couldn't find a deck chair that day and the people were packed in the pool like Sardines! Any other day it was easy to find a chair & the pools were pretty empty. CASINO: To all the gamblers out there - DON'T play blackjack on the cruise. The other players have NO idea what they are doing and will completely mess you up. Basic strategy was no where to be found. We lost many hands the first two days and stopped playing. Play a game where other players stupidity won't hurt you! We did pretty well on craps and Caribbean stud poker. Have fun on your cruise and please feel free to email me if you have any questions! You can book this cruise and be confident that you'll have a great time. Believe me -- we didn't want to leave for home! Email: icicle1420@aol.com Happy cruising! Read Less
Sail Date: April 2005
This was our 3rd cruise on the Adventure of the Seas and 8th on Royal Caribbean. We flew in the day before we cruised and stayed at the Sheraton Old San Juan. This is a nice hotel located near the day ship pier if you are familiar with Old ... Read More
This was our 3rd cruise on the Adventure of the Seas and 8th on Royal Caribbean. We flew in the day before we cruised and stayed at the Sheraton Old San Juan. This is a nice hotel located near the day ship pier if you are familiar with Old San Juan. We boarded the Adventure at 12:30 p.m. on Sunday very easily and without waiting in line. Johnny Rockets opened at 1:00 p.m., so we thought we try it before there were lines to get in (which we had encountered in the past). The food, drinks & entertainment was good as always (the wait staff dances to certain songs). We bought our wine & dine package (Diamond Level) to save a few dollars and made reservations at Portofinos before they got booked up. We also made reservations at the spa for massages on Saturday (our day at sea). We went back to the cabin and expected to find our luggage since we had boarded early and typically received it very quickly, but it hadn't arrive yet. It did arrive eventually at 7:00 p.m. (1st bag) and 10:00 p.m. (2nd bag), and we were very surprised by the delay. The Room Attendant said that they luggage service had been very slow and that he couldn't do anything to speed up the process. We had late seating for dinner and the 1st bag had our dinner clothes so everything worked out O.K. Royal Caribbean needs a better way of tracking luggage rather than it being a free for all. The ship had been in dry dock since our last Adventure cruise (May 2004) and it did look new and fresher. Our junior suite had been reconfigured and had more shortage room. The dining room service was good, but the food quality is O.K. The new menus have eliminated some of my old favorites. They did not have a major production show every night, which eliminated having a key entertainment venue each night. On our last cruise we had a late night comedian every night and the either a headliner (The Platters) or the Royal Caribbean dancers put on a show. We did eat at Portofino's and the food was amazing, and more like the food was in the main dining room in the past. Johnny Rocket's is also very good (and we only paid to eat there once of the 2 times we visited by using our Platinum coupons). The food in the Windjammer & the Cafe on the Promenade is good. We ordered Room Service twice and received prompt service and warm fresh food. It did not seem that they had as many activities planned as in the past on port days and they day at sea didn't offer much from the ship as entertainment options. The ports are great on this itinerary and the weather was very hot for this time of year - 90's. The shopping was great in St. Thomas & St. Maarten. We also visited Divi Little Bay Beach in St. Maarten and it was very nice. We took the Antigua Island Tour (RCCL excursion) which was a little boring, but we did get to see Monserrant in the the distance which was very interesting. St. Lucia was great. We told the Soufiere Island/Catamaran Tour (RCCL excursion), which takes the whole day and is amazing. Visiting the dormant volcano is just too cool for words. The Pitons are beautiful. The afternoon cruise back to the ship on the Catamaran offered great site seeing and we visited a black sand beach for snorkeling. We visited the Malibu Distillery and beach in Barbados and it was good. Nice tour, clean beach & facilities. I did enjoy my massage at the spa on Saturday. I had a basic massage rather than one of the fancy expensive packages offered by the ship, which don't offer much extra. Alfonso our Suite Attendant & Recep our waiting both did an excellent job. The coupon books for Platinum member status had been improved and offered more discounts (Johnny Rockets, Ben & Jerry's, Seattle Coffee Bar). It just felt like RCCL was offering a little bit less than when we took this cruise the year before. I didn't get off the ship longing for my next cruise or wishing it wasn't over which is a first? Read Less
Sail Date: May 2005
This was the 2nd time cruising on Adventure of the Seas. We went May 15- 22. It is truly a beautiful ship. My family had gone on our first cruise 3 years ago almost to the day but different itinerary. This time we went to Aruba, Curacao, ... Read More
This was the 2nd time cruising on Adventure of the Seas. We went May 15- 22. It is truly a beautiful ship. My family had gone on our first cruise 3 years ago almost to the day but different itinerary. This time we went to Aruba, Curacao, St Maarten & St Thomas. A much better itinerary than the St Lucia, Barbados & Antigua one (much poorer islands). Don't waste your time getting off the ship in Antigua very dirty, seedy and everybody and their mama will try to braid your hair, sell you a necklace or give you a cab ride. I had done a snorkel tour and it sucked!!! The guide was even trying to sell me necklaces. The water was rough & cloudy. I love to snorkel and I couldn't wait to get back on the boat. Here's what I noticed this time around. Positives: The food is like a million times better. They have a new head chef. The service is very excellent. The waiters & assistant waiters are very attentive and friendly. Embarking & disembarking were a breeze. Don't miss the mid-night Chocolate buffet. It is worth seeing and was a lot more elaborate this time. They have a lot of non chocolate foods. Cheese, caviar, bread, shrimp, deviled eggs etc. Don't miss Spectrum. It's a Motown show. Excellent. All the shows were great and don't miss the parades in the Promenade. They are a lot of fun too. Negatives: They now charge a fee at Johnny Rockets. No more shake of the day. It is pretty much the same every day. No band playing classical music/broadway music at dinner in the main dinner room. A lot of white trash drunk people. During dinner, they was a very large table from Texas. Every night, they were very loud and annoying. One woman had this loud, high pitched fake sounding laugh. This woman never stopped laughing probably b/c she was always drunk. On the first formal night, the men at the table thought that meant wearing a collared shirt. The women were real ladies. One started screaming at the top of her lungs that she won the f--ken bingo cruise. This was at dinner in the Mozart dining room. I have read other reviews that complaint about the large Puerto Rican groups on the ship. Yes, there are a lot of Puerto Ricans on the ship b/c it leaves from San Juan. I have never experienced a problem. I'm a New Yorker so being around a large group of Puerto Ricans isn't anything new for me. The first time I was on the ship I thought I lost an earring near an elevator. A Puerto Rican who didn't speak English. Got down on her hands and knees and helped me look and find it. Which is more than I can say for the white trash drunks! Islands & Excursions Aruba - My favorite island. Did the snorkeling tour by the WWII shipwreck. I highly recommend this excursion. It is very cool and the barbecue lunch is great. They literally hand you a plate as soon as you get off the catamaran. My mother who doesn't snorkel went on the tour with me and she had a great time! You also get to swim on the beach after lunch. Great beach. My husband and father played golf at Terra del Sol. A very hard course. Not well kept. My husband lost 12 out of the 15 balls he had. If you hit off the fairway, forget about finding your ball. It is very hot and hard to see the greens. The flags are red & blue and a difficult to see b/c the rocks are red and the sky is blue. Don't waste your time & money. Curacao- We did the fun beach excursion. It was fun but be warned that the bus is a decorated school bus with no air conditioning. It is not the shortest ride or most comfortable ride. Curacao is a wanna be Aruba. The people are very friendly but from what I saw it isn't as nice of a place as Aruba. They do not have a lot of pretty beaches. The beach we were on had a lot of locals. I ran into a couple that signed up for the sea lion excursion and it was canceled due to mating session. The beach excursion was fun. The beach was very pretty but small. Shopping in Curacao -- It was extremely hot when we were there. We were parked at the end of the pier. The Disney ship was parked closer. Bring comfortable walking shoes b/c it is a very far walk to the shopping area. There is this small bridge that swings when boats come into the harbor. The main shopping area is across the harbor. Sometimes the bridge swings when people are on it. It is safe but annoying. They also have a free ferry but it gets very crowded very soon. Not for the claustrophobic. St. Maarten - I love this island. I highly recommend the America's Cup Sailboat Racing tour & the Lottery Treetop excursions. We did the treetop excursion on this cruise. It was my favorite excursion. You go up 15 to 20 feet and zip line from tree to tree. It is tiring but a lot of fun. The French side of the island is a million times nicer than the Dutch side. The ship will port on the Dutch side. Shopping is very good here. They take US dollars and will give you US prices. I was a little afraid that we would have a problem with the exchange rate since they use Euros. This was not a problem at all. St. Thomas - I did the BoB underwater excursion. It was very cool but be warned that if you sign up for this excursion you will not be actually doing the Bob for the entire tour. They only have 6 of the underwater scooters. We took turns and snorkeled in the meantime. Unfortunately there were no fish b/c the tour guide feeds them by the Bobs which is 30 feet down. The toughest part of doing the Bob is getting into it b/c your wearing a life vest. It pulls you up when you try to go down. Once your in, its very cool but everything looks distorted. The coral reed will look like your right next to it when you actually have room. We had a lot of fun on this tour. Last time I was here we did the Turks Bay on St John's excursion. That was a beautiful beach. We had a great time. I definitely also recommend this tour. On the Ship -- If you want to make a spa appointment, get over there as quickly as possible. The line to make an appointment was longer & much slower than the line to embark on the ship. They now offer cellulite & teeth whitening. I opted for a stone massage & pedicure. If you sign up for spa service the day you set sail they will knock off $20. They will also lower the price further if you buy any of the lotions or oils they sell. The massage was great. The pedicure was all right. It was happy that I could get a French pedicure. Do not expect to get the same quality pedicure that you get at your local salon b/c it isn't going to happen. They sell this book for $20 and it has all these coupons for free stuff at different ports. You get a free bracelet from Diamonds International and free charms at every port. Del Sol will also give you free stuff: a beach bag that changes color, a tee shirt that changes color & plastic rings that change color (a each port you have coupons). There are also special deals if you spend a certain amount they will knock off $100 or $50. No price is set in stone. In Aruba, my mother bought me a beautiful gold bracelet for my birthday. She was able to get the salesman to know off $50. I would recommend this cruise for anyone. You can do as much or as little as you like. They have 3 main pools: the main pool with 4 Jacuzzis (where the Bellyflop & Mens sexy leg contest). They usually always have a Caribbean band playing. The Solarium pool. No kids allowed. No music slightly glass enclosed. A lot quieter. The kiddy pool in a different section of the ship. Good news if you're a Crown & Anchor member they give you a gift certificate package with free coupons for Johnny Rockets, free 10 minutes of internet access & a ton of other cool stuff. In a nutshell, I miss the ship and wish I was on it now. I would go on it a third time. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2005
This was our 7th cruise with Royal Caribbean. We sailed the Adventure of the Seas on May 22, 2005. We had a great time. Sailing with me were my two daughters, ages 21 and 19 and my husband. We are in our late 40's. This was 3rd ... Read More
This was our 7th cruise with Royal Caribbean. We sailed the Adventure of the Seas on May 22, 2005. We had a great time. Sailing with me were my two daughters, ages 21 and 19 and my husband. We are in our late 40's. This was 3rd Voyager class ship. We had also been on The Voyager and The Explorer. We love cruising and will cruise again! Embarkation- We had an early flight from Newark, NJ Airport to San Juan. We were on the ship by 12:00. It was a breeze. We enjoy the perks of being Platinum members. We enjoyed when we were the first to be off the ship coming from a private departure lounge. It made the horror of ending your cruise not as bad as it can be. The Ship - Adventure of the Seas was very nice. It showed a little wear and tear. My husband and daughters love the Promenade. They enjoyed the "Duck & Dog" and the Cafe Promenade. I sometimes miss seeing the sea as I can do on the Serenade of the Seas that has a lot more windows. The Food - The food for the most part was good. We ate all of our breakfasts in the Windjammer. Husband and I had breakfast on our balcony one morning which was nice. Lunches were ok. Dinner was pretty good. We are not picky eaters. The food is not gourmet but it is fine. We enjoyed prime rib, lobster, and all the selections for appetizers. The deserts are always a favorite. The Service - The service was very good on this cruise. Our waiters and stateroom attendants were very good. Did have one problem with my daughters stateroom attendant though. They were in an inside room down the hall from us. On one night I had to call housekeeping when there room wasn't made up until after 10:30 p.m. I think they take advantage of the fact they were both young adults and no "mom & dad". The Weather - The weather was excellent. Nice sunny weather in the high 80's. We have sailed a lot in November and we really enjoyed this trip more as we didn't have 1/2 rain as we would often experience in November. The Shows - This is one thing I am going to complain about. We always enjoyed all the shows on our previous cruises. This cruise lacked good entertainment. While we enjoy the singer, Jimmy , in the "Duck & Dog", we thought all the shows fell short of being good. We also didn't like how they didn't have much island music around the pool. The Ports - We have been to St. Thomas 3xs so decided to take ferry to St. John. We enjoyed Trunk Bay. It was beautiful. We loved the snorkel trail. But it take a long time to get there. It was approximately 1 1/2 hours of travel from the ship to the ferry. Then take taxi to Trunk Bay. I am glad we went but would hesitate to spend this much time on the next cruise. We loved Sapphire Beach more the Meagan's Bay and would probably go back there. Next stop St. Martin where we stayed on the ship. Antigua we went to Dickenson's Bay that was really nice. Had lunch at restaurant right on beach. The next day was St. Lucia when we decided to stay on ship. We enjoyed this for the first time having the ship to ourselves. We enjoyed stopping at Malibu Beach in Barbados. We love our days at sea and enjoy the pool activities. We loved our cruise and wish we were still sailing away.. Very hard to get back to reality. Will be looking to sail again with Royal Caribbean. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2005
My husband and I celebrated our 40th anniversary on this cruise. Most of the people who worked were wonderful and friendly, trying to make it as enjoyable for the cruisers as possible. Couldn't have asked for better service. Our cabin ... Read More
My husband and I celebrated our 40th anniversary on this cruise. Most of the people who worked were wonderful and friendly, trying to make it as enjoyable for the cruisers as possible. Couldn't have asked for better service. Our cabin was ready for us each night with a piece of candy on our pillows and a cute animal made out of our towels. The cruisers on this ship were varied in nationalities. There were over 200 people from Puerto Rico, otherwise with the remaining 3000 people were from different countries. Only 200 children on this cruise. Cpt. Remos stated this was the smallest amount of children on the cruise since its first sailing. Our idea of wonderful cuisine is eating at Applebees. So, for our opinion, the food was fabulous. Something different and unusual each night that we have never tried before. Now for my soap-box... This is just my opinion... But, for those that state that the food was horrible, or that you were tired of being pushed around by rude people from Puerto Rico, or whatever your complaints were, next time try looking for the positive. You have one ship, over 3000 people being cruised from one port to another, and eating every night. It would be very difficult to make everyone happy all of the time. For me, I would have to look very hard to find anything to complain about. Try looking at the positive instead of the negative. If you a food Connoisseur, don't expect gourmet food every time you eat. Be happy that you are being fed, imagine taking this cruise back in the 1800's... Couldn't have been a wonderful time then. For me, I am very thankful to have this opportunity to go. Maybe in five years my hubby and I can take our adult kids along with, but until that time, I will remember the wonderful time we had and the wonderful new friends we met along the way. Read Less
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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