I booked this cruise after being made redundant and wanting to do something nice with the money.
When I printed the e-ticket 48 hours before we left, I found we had been upgraded to cabin D307, from L311.
We arrived at Manchester airport early to find that the check in had also opened early. We were through check in within 15 minutes and checked into the airport lounge. On arrival at Barbados we were straight off the plane and onto a bus which took us straight to the ship's embarkation sheds (like a large hangar). Although the queues were long, this took about 20 minutes and we were on board.
D307 was wonderful with a king size bed, shower and bath, pamper pack with lotions and potions, two large flat screen TVs, fridge, large sofa in the sitting room and an adequately sized balcony. Some other cabins on C deck had larger balconies where you could lie flat on a lounger but these did not have a sitting room. The furniture was new and clean and surdy. We also had a pair of binoculars supplied which was a nice touch and we used these to spot all sorts of things, such as getting close ups of the flying fish and dolphins which swam next to the ship sometimes.
We were a little disappointed because there was not actually much to see within walking distance although we went into the town and to a small market. Lots of taxi drivers offering excursions but we just decided we wanted a walk.
We jumped into a water taxi and went to Grand Anse beach which was beautiful. Lots of competition from local traders as to where you sat, what you drank etc but no hassle.
We booked an excursion to Brewers Bay but were told on the day that the sea swells made for unsafe swimming so we were offered Cane Garden Bay at no extra charge. This beach was gorgeous with good pricing, an excellent beach and large but safe waves.
This beautful Dutch influenced port was full of brightly painted houses. The town was an easy walk from the ship with lots of well priced shops. We loved the floating bridge across the river too.
We took an independent and slightly disappointing minibus tour of the island. The beaches were beautful and we got off the bus at Eagle Beach, planning to sunbathe, only to find that it was privately owned and although we could put our towels down, we could not independently hire shelter or sunloungers. We caught a regular bus back to port and having done so, I would recommend that anyone wanting to visit the island simply jumps on a bus (the station is opposite the dock) as they are plentiful, regular and cheap.
Beautiful scenery but we were all ebached out by this point and did not stray far from the ship. Lots of harassment from locals to go on tours and excursions and some kept following us, which made us feel a little uneasy.