I've cruised with RCL for 25 years. This ship is almost as old. It's time to invest in a new "Vision size ships" for exotic ports, rather than the mega ships. Loyal cruisers need better. The 4th deck smelled like 15 frat guys "barfed". They blamed it on a coke syrup leak and only Coca Cola could fix it. I was on this ship for a straight month and nothing was ever done about it. Every night in the Centrum, all of the events and the computer area is there also. Just stunk. How many "west end" singers can you entertain us with? Is a movie now the expectation for nightly entertainment? We listen to 3 singer and dancer shows. Do we need another night show from an employee? Five straight days at sea with no movies in your room, poor to no signal, nothing. What happened to CCTV and 3 different movies repeated a day for the 24 hour period? If you take out the 50 RCL things to do in the Daily Compass you have 3 or 4 things to do. The problem is RCL doesn't know its' audience anymore. The average age on most exotic type cruises like this is 70 plus. I didn't see any of them climbing the wall or doing the family ring toss. People are paying up to 10k to 15k now for these cruises. That doesn't include air, tours, hotels, etc. Lose the profit margins and spend a few more bucks on keeping people entertained. The Crown and Anchor benefits are becoming non existent. Whoever came up with the 2-straight 24 hour internet days versus 90 minutes use throughout the cruise should reassess. Terrible. The food was average. A lot of waiters were just promoted and didn't know the menus. For the shore excursions you had Mosques closed by the time we got in port. Doing the Suez Canal at night? No back-up plan for wind in Santorini. Coming in to Istanbul at 200pm and on a Sunday when things are closed and Mosques have prayer. It's time to go back to the focus groups. We had over 700 back to back cruisers on this cruise and we are all talking about the same things. Is that the right direction for RCL? I have 4 more cruises booked with RCL. As they say on ESPN, "Common Man".
Since Muscat tours are essentially the same as Muscat tours, we cancelled our tour for the day and stayed on the ship. It was also over 100 degrees. the taxi fare was $150 in to town (6 miles)
We did a private Viator gourmet foodie tour. One of the best tours of the trip. We probably tasted up to 20 different foods and drink. You got to totally explore all of the markets in the Plaka District with views to the Acropolis.
We were in Istanbul for 6 days before Coming in on Sunday at 200pm with the Grand Bazar closed, Mosques closed for prayer, the Hagia Sophia under restoration was unfortunate for a lot of cruisers. This was by far, one of my most favorite countries to visit.