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I chose Royal because I have had great experience in the past. The ship is older and smaller so not a whole lot for younger kids to do. My teen didn't want to give the teen center a try because he didn't get it out right away and was nervous that to many kids already knew each other by the time he would have went there. My oldest son is in a wheelchair so from that point of view locations on the ship are very accessible. The main dining room crew always made sure it was easy for him to get in/out of the table area. At the Windjammer things are very crowded and hard for him to move around. Service was great in dining room but food has a lot to be desired. Most desserts were dried out and mostly the same thing all week. They would have a couple new desserts each night but nothing really fancy. Food elsewhere on the boat I would say is so/so also. It tends to make me a little nervous at buffet style eating areas for the exact reason that I saw a child lick their fingers to scoop food off a spoon put it back in the food and then scoop again and lick it again. So as much as I could I stayed out of the Windjammer. Plus 3 of the 4 times I got an omelette in the morning they were made wrong or under cooked. The Park Cafe had great salads! Same with the dining room for lunch! Entertainment was okay. Funny comedians for main entertainment. Never did see the people who were suppose to do things in the centrum from the ceiling. I don't think they must do that anymore or it wasn't on this cruise. Cruise director was funny and full of energy. Finding seating at the theatre on the cruise ship was difficult. The first night when we found a sort of handicap area they didn't seem happy we asked to move a chair out even though the area said for wheelchair users. A lot of times the area was full of non handicap users so we had to stand to stay together. Really enjoyed the ports of call, but if you have someone in a wheelchair you will need to remember some of the ports are older and that means the buildings are and you can not get into a lot of shops. In Bar Harbor you need to tender so we rented a manual chair and the roads there are very hilly so we took turns pushing the chair and it was a lot of work. However if you take the free shuttle at Bar Harbor the explorer there are many things you can see. If you go into Acadia there will be a fee to enter park per person but if you are permanently disabled you can get your free access pass for National Parks. (You can even do this before you go) We were there during the 4th of July holiday so it was extremely busy and we were unable to get on/off a lot because of not being able to get back on soon enough to get back on the boat. Something to be aware of it a lot of boats are in port. In Boston we took a tour through the cruise line that was 2 hours and left us at Quincy Market place from there we could do things on foot and then still had a transfer back to the boat. The only bad thing with that is the last shuttle back to boat was at 6pm. So even though we were there until 11pm we could not stay in town with a way to get back. In St. John we did the City Bus Tour on our own which you can look up on the St. John's Transportation website. That was a nice little way to get around town if you wanted to get out to the reversing rapids. But if you go to the rapids it really needs to be at the exact time that it takes place otherwise you just see a river flowing the other direction depending on the time of day you go. I felt well we are here we should check it out, but it was really nothing to see. Halifax is great and if you can get out to Peggy's Cove it's a beautiful drive. Going around in a wheelchair at Peggy's Cove is a little tight, but you can do it if you are careful. We found a company called Callow Bus that for just over $70/hour they will drive you where you want to go and for how many hours you would like if you are disabled. And up to 8 people can go at the one rate. Amazing charity to work with. We found out at the end there is an extra cost for going out to Peggy's Cove so you may want to double check that, but with that being said we went to the Cove, drove to get maple syrup, saw the Titanic Graves, drove around the citadel, went by the public gardens and a few other stops. If you need accessible transportation this is where I would check it out. It was really hard to find otherwise. Our accessible cabin on the boat was great. The hoyer lift I rented worked well in the cabin and the commode chair the ship provided worked great in the shower also. They do have a pull down chair in the shower, but for our purposes it worked to do both.

Great ports of call

Grandeur of the Seas Cruise Review by jenscakes

2 people found this helpful
Trip Details
I chose Royal because I have had great experience in the past. The ship is older and smaller so not a whole lot for younger kids to do. My teen didn't want to give the teen center a try because he didn't get it out right away and was nervous that to many kids already knew each other by the time he would have went there. My oldest son is in a wheelchair so from that point of view locations on the ship are very accessible. The main dining room crew always made sure it was easy for him to get in/out of the table area. At the Windjammer things are very crowded and hard for him to move around. Service was great in dining room but food has a lot to be desired. Most desserts were dried out and mostly the same thing all week. They would have a couple new desserts each night but nothing really fancy. Food elsewhere on the boat I would say is so/so also. It tends to make me a little nervous at buffet style eating areas for the exact reason that I saw a child lick their fingers to scoop food off a spoon put it back in the food and then scoop again and lick it again. So as much as I could I stayed out of the Windjammer. Plus 3 of the 4 times I got an omelette in the morning they were made wrong or under cooked. The Park Cafe had great salads! Same with the dining room for lunch!

Entertainment was okay. Funny comedians for main entertainment. Never did see the people who were suppose to do things in the centrum from the ceiling. I don't think they must do that anymore or it wasn't on this cruise. Cruise director was funny and full of energy. Finding seating at the theatre on the cruise ship was difficult. The first night when we found a sort of handicap area they didn't seem happy we asked to move a chair out even though the area said for wheelchair users. A lot of times the area was full of non handicap users so we had to stand to stay together.

Really enjoyed the ports of call, but if you have someone in a wheelchair you will need to remember some of the ports are older and that means the buildings are and you can not get into a lot of shops. In Bar Harbor you need to tender so we rented a manual chair and the roads there are very hilly so we took turns pushing the chair and it was a lot of work. However if you take the free shuttle at Bar Harbor the explorer there are many things you can see. If you go into Acadia there will be a fee to enter park per person but if you are permanently disabled you can get your free access pass for National Parks. (You can even do this before you go) We were there during the 4th of July holiday so it was extremely busy and we were unable to get on/off a lot because of not being able to get back on soon enough to get back on the boat. Something to be aware of it a lot of boats are in port. In Boston we took a tour through the cruise line that was 2 hours and left us at Quincy Market place from there we could do things on foot and then still had a transfer back to the boat. The only bad thing with that is the last shuttle back to boat was at 6pm. So even though we were there until 11pm we could not stay in town with a way to get back. In St. John we did the City Bus Tour on our own which you can look up on the St. John's Transportation website. That was a nice little way to get around town if you wanted to get out to the reversing rapids. But if you go to the rapids it really needs to be at the exact time that it takes place otherwise you just see a river flowing the other direction depending on the time of day you go. I felt well we are here we should check it out, but it was really nothing to see. Halifax is great and if you can get out to Peggy's Cove it's a beautiful drive. Going around in a wheelchair at Peggy's Cove is a little tight, but you can do it if you are careful. We found a company called Callow Bus that for just over $70/hour they will drive you where you want to go and for how many hours you would like if you are disabled. And up to 8 people can go at the one rate. Amazing charity to work with. We found out at the end there is an extra cost for going out to Peggy's Cove so you may want to double check that, but with that being said we went to the Cove, drove to get maple syrup, saw the Titanic Graves, drove around the citadel, went by the public gardens and a few other stops. If you need accessible transportation this is where I would check it out. It was really hard to find otherwise. Our accessible cabin on the boat was great. The hoyer lift I rented worked well in the cabin and the commode chair the ship provided worked great in the shower also. They do have a pull down chair in the shower, but for our purposes it worked to do both.
jenscakes’s Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Embarkation
Dining
Public Rooms
Entertainment
Cabin
Fitness & Recreation
Shore Excursions
Ages 13 to 15
Service
Onboard Experience
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Cabin Review

Cabin
The cabin worked well for us. We had 3 people in it. The sofa can be made into a double bed and then we put 2 of the beds in an L shape along the wall to make a lot of room to move around in a wheelchair and with a hoyer lift in the room.
  Grandeur of the Seas Deck Plans

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

  • Bar Harbor
    If you want to have a review from an accessible stand point I will give that. Accessibility is difficult in older towns but we really loved this town. Stores can be hard or impossible to get into. Having to get a manual wheelchair because it's a tendering spot made it hard to push my son along the very steep roads. However, there is a free shuttle on the Explorer in town and that is very accessible and it can get you a lot of places. If you want to go to Acadia there is a fee but the people in the building where the Explorer picks up are extremely helpful on seeing where you want to go and how you can get there. I would highly recommend Acadia if you love National Parks. We are coming back to spend more time there someday.
    View All 501 Bar Harbor Cruise Port Reviews
    View Cruise Critic's Bar Harbor Cruise Port Review
  • Old Town Trolley Tour
    This was the 2 hour tour that you could not hop on/off. In some ways that would have been nicer, but they were really busy also when we were in town and it may have been difficult to get on/off. We toured the town and saw a lot of spots and then we got off at Quincy Marketplace. From there we were able to get a shuttle back to the ship when we wanted. However, the last shuttle was at 6pm so even though we were in port for 5 more hours we could not take advantage of that. We needed the handicap transportation.
    View All 34 Old Town Trolley Tour Reviews
  • Peggy's Cove
    This was by far our favorite stop. If you can get out to Peggy's Cove I would recommend it. If you need accessible transportation for an electric wheelchair it is super expensive with the cruise line. I found my own thru a company that is a charity called Callow Bus. They are amazing and charge per hour and the bus can fit up to 8 people I believe. We saw a ton of things. We went to Peggy's Cove and saw the lighthouse and the fisherman's monument. Then we stopped and got maple syrup on the drive back to Halifax. In Halifax we drove around the Citadel, went to the Titanic Graves, drove past the public gardens (we could have gotten out), went by the library, and saw a few other sites. Then we had our driver leave us at the end of the boardwalk so we could explore around there and walk back to the ship.
    View All 210 Peggy's Cove Reviews
  • Kennebunkport
    Nice tour. They didn't have down for some reason we need accessible transportation even though I could only book it thru that department with the cruise line so they had to move some buses around for us to get on the tour. It is a nice tour that includes getting to the lighthouse which we really wanted to do.
    View All 71 Kennebunkport Reviews
  • City Tour
    This is a nice way to get out to the reversing rapids if you feel you need to get out there. And a great way to find out things about the city and see there locations if you do want to walk around and see where you can get back to. The local city transportation office offers a city tour and it is handicap accessible. But I did call the city ahead of time to make sure they had a bus on the route the day we were in town was accessible and they made sure a bus was that day. Driver was knowledgeable to made it interesting.
    View All 32 City Tour Reviews