1. Home
  2. Cruise Reviews
  3. Navigator of the Seas
This was our second cruise, both of which have been with Royal Caribbean. Although overall it was good, I was slightly disappointed and don't think we'll sail with them again. Embarkation was good - it was very quick and easy and so much nicer than an airport - and the ship is nice. There is so much on board with so many bars and activities that there is something for everyone to do almost all the time. We had sailed on the Independence of the Seas last time and the Navigator is almost identical - the only difference was it doesn't have a nightclub and has one fewer bar, and the whirlpools aren't cantilevered out on the sides of the ship. Other than that it's the same. That said, it's so identical I think it made it slightly less special for us as all the bar decor and everything is exactly the same and you didn't feel the need to explore as much. Our cabin was very nice (ocean view with balcony) and our stateroom attendant was excellent. Food was generally all very good, and we really enjoyed the ice show and the two shows we saw in the main theatre. Bilbao was also a really nice city to visit and it was very easy to get to without doing a paid excursion - you can just walk 15 minutes into very pretty Getxo and get the metro for €1.80 and then you're there. The beach at Getxo was also great in the sunshine if you don't want to go all the way into Bilbao. Le Havre is OK but there isn't much there. It's fine for a walk around though. I honestly don't know why anyone would want to get a 2-3 hour coach to Paris from there on a paid excursion. So those are the positives. On a more negative note - I think you get what you pay for and I think Royal Caribbean's standards are really slipping from what I've read of others' experiences. It wasn't really as much of a luxury holiday as I wanted, and at times it was much more Butlins-at-sea than I'd like. Dress codes are not particularly enforced in general and that made it feel like you could be sat on the strip at Benidorm when people were wandering around in joggers and football shirts. Royal Caribbean seems to be going much more for the mass market now, or at least it is for it's UK sailings, and that's a shame when you expect cruising to be a special treat. Also, our ship was fully booked and that made it VERY crowded at times. Breakfast was a nightmare if you weren't really early and it was very hard even to get a table. On the one sunny day the deck was so crowded you couldn't find a lounger anywhere, and in the evenings you could do a circuit of the bars a couple of times before you found a seat anywhere. We had quite strong winds sailing down the Bay of Biscay and back, and on a ship this size it meant there was a lot of movement from side to side and that made me and a lot of other people feel very nauseous. It's a hazard for the Bay of Biscay in October, but it made me think I would avoid any sailings now where there are whole days at sea because it just meant the day was wasted - I couldn't eat or do anything really and just had to wait until we'd passed the weather. It wasn't even that bad weather, but the ship is so huge that cross-winds really affect it so be aware of that. Overall, it was good but not as good as our first cruise (3 days to Bruges and Le Havre). It was over-crowded and not as fancy as I wanted, and for the money you could have a much nicer conventional holiday.

Quite good, bit disappointing places

Navigator of the Seas Cruise Review by superlative

2 people found this helpful
Trip Details
This was our second cruise, both of which have been with Royal Caribbean. Although overall it was good, I was slightly disappointed and don't think we'll sail with them again.

Embarkation was good - it was very quick and easy and so much nicer than an airport - and the ship is nice. There is so much on board with so many bars and activities that there is something for everyone to do almost all the time. We had sailed on the Independence of the Seas last time and the Navigator is almost identical - the only difference was it doesn't have a nightclub and has one fewer bar, and the whirlpools aren't cantilevered out on the sides of the ship. Other than that it's the same. That said, it's so identical I think it made it slightly less special for us as all the bar decor and everything is exactly the same and you didn't feel the need to explore as much.

Our cabin was very nice (ocean view with balcony) and our stateroom attendant was excellent. Food was generally all very good, and we really enjoyed the ice show and the two shows we saw in the main theatre. Bilbao was also a really nice city to visit and it was very easy to get to without doing a paid excursion - you can just walk 15 minutes into very pretty Getxo and get the metro for €1.80 and then you're there. The beach at Getxo was also great in the sunshine if you don't want to go all the way into Bilbao. Le Havre is OK but there isn't much there. It's fine for a walk around though. I honestly don't know why anyone would want to get a 2-3 hour coach to Paris from there on a paid excursion.

So those are the positives. On a more negative note - I think you get what you pay for and I think Royal Caribbean's standards are really slipping from what I've read of others' experiences. It wasn't really as much of a luxury holiday as I wanted, and at times it was much more Butlins-at-sea than I'd like. Dress codes are not particularly enforced in general and that made it feel like you could be sat on the strip at Benidorm when people were wandering around in joggers and football shirts. Royal Caribbean seems to be going much more for the mass market now, or at least it is for it's UK sailings, and that's a shame when you expect cruising to be a special treat. Also, our ship was fully booked and that made it VERY crowded at times. Breakfast was a nightmare if you weren't really early and it was very hard even to get a table. On the one sunny day the deck was so crowded you couldn't find a lounger anywhere, and in the evenings you could do a circuit of the bars a couple of times before you found a seat anywhere.

We had quite strong winds sailing down the Bay of Biscay and back, and on a ship this size it meant there was a lot of movement from side to side and that made me and a lot of other people feel very nauseous. It's a hazard for the Bay of Biscay in October, but it made me think I would avoid any sailings now where there are whole days at sea because it just meant the day was wasted - I couldn't eat or do anything really and just had to wait until we'd passed the weather. It wasn't even that bad weather, but the ship is so huge that cross-winds really affect it so be aware of that.

Overall, it was good but not as good as our first cruise (3 days to Bruges and Le Havre). It was over-crowded and not as fancy as I wanted, and for the money you could have a much nicer conventional holiday.
superlative’s Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Embarkation
Dining
Public Rooms
Entertainment
Cabin
Fitness & Recreation
Shore Excursions
Service
Onboard Experience
Free Price Drop Alerts
Get Royal Caribbean Navigator of the Seas price drops
250,000+ people have entered their email

Cabin Review

Cabin 9676
This is a nice cabin, the last balcony room on that side of the ninth deck at the back. It was perfectly spacious for two people with a little desk and an armchair and a table and two chairs on the balcony. The room has a shower cubicle rather than a bath. It is an adjoining room with a door through to the next (windowless) stateroom, so I was a little worried about extra noise through the door. We hardly heard anything from our neighbours so - I think we heard their television once and that was it. That said, I always sleep with earplugs when I'm on holiday so I can't comment fully on noise if you sleep without them.
  Navigator of the Seas Deck Plans

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews