We flew in to Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport and arrived around 9:30 AM on Sunday (the day of embarkation). After picking up our luggage, it was only 10 AM. We decided to wait in the airport for another 30 minutes, thinking we could not start the embarkation until later. By the time we left the airport at 10:25 AM, there was so much traffic leaving airport. And we also waited awhile at the port before we can get out of the taxi. Our taxi fare for 4 people ended up being $26 (before tips) because of the traffic and the wait.
Embarkation - There weren't that many people in line when we got there around 11 AM. We got checked in quickly and was assigned to Group 5. The embarkation process was scheduled to start at 11:45 AM, and it did. Groups 1-4 proceeded accordingly and fairly quickly. We got out of our seat thinking we were next. Then they announced that they were hauling the process due to gangway not being secured. We were standing around for at least an hour. The same information was repeated several times. Then they called Group 5. We went upstairs, but the agents upstairs seemed confused as to why we were there. She asked that we sat down to wait. Before everyone could sit down, we were told that they want to "get everyone on the ship as fast as possible". We were hurried along to get onto the gangway. The gangway was very stable and secured, so it was hard to figure out why there was an hour of delay. Unlike the past cruises we've taken, there was no staff welcoming the guests. This didn't bother us a bit since we just wanted to get to our room and then go grab some lunch.
Public Rooms - We were not impressed with the decoration choices on Eurodam. But since this is not the focus for our trip, I don't change the rating because of it. The decor was mostly muted, earthy tone. There were fake plants in some of the elevator areas. And tired looking patio sofa (with brown chair cushions) at another elevator areas. The arts on the wall were also not very inspiring. One set of staircase features portraits of men with lots of hair. Another set of staircase features ships and shore line, which were actually added a little colors. Compared to cruises we've taken before (Norwegian Pearl, Jewel, Carnival Freedom), the Guest Services area was dark and not very impressive, and the staircases were smaller.
We had rooms 5160 and 5164. The rooms were identical/mirror of each other. In Room 5160, you walk in with bathroom on the right and closets on the left. Then bed on the right, TV on the opposite wall. Then the sofa on the right, make up desk on the left. Balcony had two chairs and two ottomans.
There were plenty of storage in the room. Besides the closets and the night stands, there were additional drawers under the bed and under the sofa.
We (2 people) were comfortable in the room. The beds came with two pillows for each person (1 large and firm, 1 smaller and soft). The bed was firm and very comfortable. The sheets and towels were nice and fluffy. I think the room could be comfortable for 3 people, but it would be difficult to get to the balcony if the sofa bed was being used. The ceiling was low. Being 5' 4", I could stretch my arm and touch the ceiling.
The bathroom was relatively large for a room on cruise. It also has a shower/bathtub combination. It had dispensers for (minty) shower gel, shampoo and conditioner. A bar soap, shower cap and a small bottle of lotion was also provided. There is one plug near the light in the bathroom. It was not the standard American plug. The ceiling to floor distance is even shorter in the bathtub. Just keep that in mind if you're tall.
Since the bathroom and closets were right near the door, there were a lot of doors right at the one corner of the room. We were able to deal with it, but it was not the best design.
My only complaint about the room was the lighting in the room. When you first walk into the room, there is one light right past the door. When you open the closet, the closet door blocks the light completely. There is not enough light from anywhere else in the room, so that it is nearly impossible to see anything in the closet. And the full length mirror on the closet door was also useless, also due to poor lighting. The make up desk by the balcony door had the same issue. The lights were all installed at the wrong places. Ladies, you have to do your make up in the bathroom. But you have to do your hair at the make up desk because you can only plug in the hairdryer (provided by the cruises ship) at the electric outlets on the wall next to the make up desk.
The flat screen TV in the room was nice. The restaurant menus were available on TV. There were also a lot free movie selection. And we enjoyed watching movies at night.
We flew in to Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport and arrived around 9:30 AM on Sunday (the day of embarkation). After picking up our luggage, it was only 10 AM. We decided to wait in the airport for another 30 minutes, thinking we could not start the embarkation until later. By the time we left the airport at 10:25 AM, there was so much traffic leaving airport. And we also waited awhile at the port before we can get out of the taxi. Our taxi fare for 4 people ended up being $26 (before tips) because of the traffic and the wait. My understanding is the typical taxi fare for 4 people should be less than $20.
We enjoy quiet beach time at Grand Turk. When you get off the cruise ship, you will see the retaining walls with "Welcome to" on the left and "Grand Turk" on the right. We walked through the stores and make a right toward the side that said "Grant Turk". And it had just enough music to feel festive, but not so loud that you can't enjoy the peace and quiet.
There were also people offering massages right there on the beach.
There were a nice sandy beach area with some gravels. The water was nice and clear. I would suggest wearing water shoes, especially for the little ones. If you walk further down, away from the ship, there was an area with very large rocks. My kids were taking pictures in that area. A lot of people were there with their snorkeling gears. You will definitely need water shoes to walk in that area.
We decided to do the self guided walking tour in Old. Make sure you have plenty of water or prepare to buy some. Sunscreen is a must and depending on the weather forecast, you might need umbrellas.
We got off the ship and had some trouble finding the Visitor Center (which was at the street corner passed the CVS store). We got our map, then went to wait for the free shuttle at stop #14, which across the street from the CVS store, in front of the bus terminal. After 20 minutes of waiting, we were exhausted by the heat. San Juan was hot and with all the traffic there, it was even hotter. It turned out that the shuttle runs every 30 minutes, and could easily be delayed due to local traffic.
We decided to walk to the fort. It only took us 10 minutes, maybe less, to walk to Castillo de San Cristóbal. The entrance fee was $5 (for both forts) for anyone older than 15. It offered a beautiful view of the ocean. And it was windy and cooler on top of the fort. That totally saved us from the heat. After the fort, we walked the streets in Old San Juan. We wanted to find the streets with beautiful colorful houses. We did not find the streets we were looking for. Some of the smaller streets smelled like the back of the restaurants and did not feel very safe for tourists. We walked to the Cathedral and to the Old San Juan Gate. The cobblestones streets, fountains and the waterfront area were charming and beautiful.
This was the most beautiful beach we have been to. It was powdery white sand with crystal clear water, and very clam water. We enjoyed walking on the beach, looking for shells and just be in the ocean.
There were life guards in the main area. The waves were stronger as you walk further away from the main area, towards the stable.
The clam shells were completed sold out before the ship even sail. While it was only 72 degrees when we were there, it was very hot sitting on the beach chair in the afternoon. We managed to find some shade while we were there. The only place with shade past late morning/noon is the area right under the trees and right in front of the villas.
I enjoyed the beef short ribs and fresh fruits from the barbecue lunch. The chicken and burgers look really dry to me, so I did not try them. Cold drinks and waters were available during lunch.
Before I left the ship, I filled the thermal water bottles with ice, and also filled a few water bottles with water. It was nice to not have to look for water on Half Moon Cay. Just remember to use the glasses in Lido deck to get the ice and water. Please don't fill the personal water bottles directly from the ice and water dispensers.