We wanted to try the larger ship and see what it had. We had two college spring breakers, a 16 year old and an 11 year old with us. The embarkation process was a little bit daunting. The lines are huge and they do take a while to go through security and process. But once you are in, then it is ok. The bad part, is if you have any changes to make in your dining, or reservations you want to make for any show, they must be done once you get on the ship, if you haven't done them before, so you might miss sail away, as we did. We were in lines inside the ship, trying to get other things figured out for the rest of our travel.
The Adventure Ocean for my 11 year old was not very good. Unfortunately, the kids, in my opinion, being a teacher, are grouped incorrectly. Adventure Ocean is from 9-11. More and more an older 11 year old will not appreciate being mixed in with the 6-8 which is what happened in several occasions of our trip. So, our younger son only attended the program twice. In previous cruises, this has not been an issue. The rest of the program seemed great. My daughter enjoyed the teen programming.
We did not get to dock at Labadee because of the wave height and danger of bringing such a big ship on dock. So, no input on that.
In Jamaica...be careful. Blue Waters Resort is over rated....The shore line has a lot of seaweed, which could be seasonal, but was not enjoyable. Also, the staff are a little seedy...many will ask you if you'd prefer to go to a private beach and will prey on the younger 20 year olds for additional services ( selling and purchasing of things..). Not good....
In Cozumel...be careful too... especially at any of the Port eateries like Señor Frogs or Margaritaville. The intent is to get you as drunk as possible and once you are, they check your pockets for additional cash you may have. We watched this happen to several people (mostly 20 somethings)... If it wasn't for other Royal Caribbean travelers in the area watching out, most of these people, would not make it back on the ship. At the shops, they will tell you anything you want to hear, but watch out...they triple their prices on most jewelry's so if you are not willing to negotiate, then don't try and make a purchase.
If you do not like lines or crowds, this is not the ship for you. The Windjammer was always packed and the lines for breakfast, lunch and dinner were terrible. I know the staff could not help this, as they are feeding 6000 + people. So, just know what you are getting into, if you choose this ship. Also, with the on board shows, prepare to at least allow 45 minutes before the show to get any kind of decent seating, because the crowds once again, are overwhelming.
For us, having cruised on other ships before, this was way too big and although RC does their best to accommodate this many people, it can be a challenge.
Hope this helps.
Our cabin was just right. There was four of us. Our attendant was amazing at folding up and extending the sleeper couch, as needed throughout the day. We were not in our cabin much, so it was just right for us. It was very clean.
We went to Blue Waters Resort on our own....Not good. Over priced. Lots of seaweed on the shore line. The attendants want additional money for everything. Lots of seedy people asking to take you to secluded beaches, or offering other things. They are relentless too.
Excellent service from the snorkeling company. Very wonderful helpers and took us to three different sites to snorkel.
Be careful at Port though... there was lots of free Tequila flowing at the local restaurants like Señor Frog. Their aim is to get people drunk and then they check pockets for any cash...very abusive.View All 485 Snorkeling Reviews