This was our first ever cruise and we decided to go on the Royal Princess for our honeymoon. Having never cruised before we were apprehensive but we loved every minute of it!
We started off by spending 4 nights in a nice apartment in Holywood, Fort Lauderdale. This place itself was beautiful and ideal for travelling in between Fort Lauderdale and Miami. We did a few of the usual tourist things (Miami Heat, Miami Beach etc.) but most of all just enjoyed relaxing in the Holywood area. One recommendation for Fort Lauderdale if you are staying there pre or post cruise would be the Jungle Queen tour.
On to the cruise itself. From the moment we stepped onto the ship we were looked after superbly. All of the staff on board were exceptional and no request was ever too much.
Our Cabin was a deluxe balcony. Something we were worried about before coming was having a small cabin and we didn't need to be, There was more than enough room for our huge suitcases and for us to move around. With so much to do on the ship we both said for next time we would look at a smaller room. The design of the room was nice and modern and was well looked after by the stewards.
For dining we did a mixture of the anytime dining (food was exceptional, something I know princess have been critised for before), alfredo's (superb pizza) and we tried the buffet one evening. The buffet itself for me was a little disappointing. Don't get me wrong when we went to the buffet at lunch on sea days was very good, lots of variety and surprisingly good quality for a buffet. Just on the evening we went the selection was poor and what we did have wasn't the best. That said we only tried it one night.
There was a great mixture of entertainment throughout the cruise, we were pleasantly surprised with the quality and variety throughout the cruise. My personal highlights was the vocal impressionist Tyler Bryce and the Voice of the Ocean finale. I think they may have uncovered a future star with the winner. The on-board band and resident entertainer were also high quality. Also worth mentioned the princess live. Quite impressive to have a TV studio on-board and it was fun getting involved with this.
I won't go over all of the ports as already rambled on but two to pick out. A highlight was an excursion in St Thomas where we did the Kayak, Hike & Snorkel adventure at Cas Cay. Would highly recommend the three hour trip, great variety and great guides. It was both fun and educational. On the negative side we went on an excursion in St Lucia that we would not recommend. It was a scenic drive to the sulphur pits, a working plantation and catamaran journey back with a brief stop for a swim. The catamaran element was fun but the rest was tediously boring despite the guides best efforts.
The last thing that made our cruise great was the people. We made some good friends on board and was well looked after by the bar staff. In particular worth a shout out to the team at Bellini's (Nemo, Ariel and Val). Service was excellent and they themselves were like a comedy team. Had so much fun.
Hope you found this useful. We were first time cruisers and are already looking at booking our next one!