We booked this cruise after going 2x on Mariner out of Galveston, hoping to get out of Texas summer heat. This cruise was a few weeks too soon to see any fall color but we did get to see an occasional tree that was starting to turn. Our corner aft balcony (8690) was fine, but the deck 8 corridor port side, for the length of the ship, smelled moldy. We walked up the starboard side, it did not have the same problem. The shore excursions were a mixed bag.
At Portland we took the Mt. Washington cog train tour; that tour operator needs improvement. Very unorganized, providing a pathetic box lunch and they could not even do that well. The train itself, and the view from the top, were really good. But they need to improve the trip up and back.
At Bar Harbor we took the bike tour. The first 10 minutes of the tour are VERY strenuous -- several of our group got off their bikes and walked up the first hill, which is VERY steep; a smaller number walked up the 2nd hill; after those first 2 hills though, the rest of the bike ride is quite casual. Coming back the way you came, when you get to that last hill you don't pedal at all, just keep using the brakes. At the end of the ride though, they really should have people dismount before reaching the parking lot -- we had an accident coming off the trail into the parking lot where traffic and people are not looking for bikes coming off the trail, and medical attention was not nearly what it should have been.
8690 was nice -- port side corner-aft with very clear view of the port side sights, with a decent but somewhat obstructed view through other balconies to starboard-side sights. Sailing out of Cape Liberty we had a decent but distant view of the Statue of Liberty and Manhattan. The balcony door is a little fidgety, it takes a bit of strength to unlock the deadbolt, which the room attendant locked every time he served the room. Toward the end of our cruise the AC wasn't working; a maintenance man came and in short order had it back to cooling again. Being at the very end of the corridor there is virtually no noise from the corridor but of course it's a long walk to the elevators and stairs. On this cruise (Aug-Sep 2014) the entire deck 8 port side corridor, front to back, had a moldy smell while the starboard side corridor did not have this problem.