Fantastic Freedom: Freedom of the Seas Cruise Review by Rmunson72906

Freedom of the Seas 5
Member Since 2010
88 Forum Posts

Overall Member Rating

Fantastic Freedom

Sail Date: May 2010
Destination: Western Caribbean
Embarkation: Port Canaveral (Orlando)
My husband and I and our 2 best friends just returned from a 7 night w. caribbean cruise on freedom of the seas on 5/23/10. we booked through the Royal Caribbean website and had an aft Junior Suite rm. 7712. we booked a flight and hotel in Orlando for the day before the cruise and the day after.

Day 1: Orlando/Hotel

After arriving in Orlando late due to a delayed flight, we were all tired,hungry and a little cranky, thank god we flew in from Buffalo, NY the day before the cruise.

However we had booked a room at La Quinta Airport North and it was very nice. We picked this hotel because of it's price, and free airport shuttle. We didn't need anything super fancy as long as it's clean we're happy and we're not staying there for long periods of time so we don't care what amenities it has. The airport shuttle was extremely quick and curteous we called when collecting our bags and they were there by the time we were outside, our driver Danny was especially More helpful with our luggage and also at check in making it quick and painless and answering any questions we had and giving us local area information. The hotel itself is a small airport budget hotel. It has a very pretty apperance from the outside, everything is well kept up and landscaped. Once inside the lobby it is also clean and well appointed. The hallway rugs not on the main floor and in the rooms are showing some ware (slightly warped, and slight discoloration is some spots) but always clean and appear freshly vaccumed. The rooms are a very decent size as is the bathroom, and the room and beds are clean and very basic. You will have a tv. not flat screen but who cares, a phone, phone book, alarm clock, bible, and hotel info sheets, along with a coffee pot and coffee and cream and sugar. Bath amenities are 1 small bottle of citrus shampoo and 2 citrus soaps. The hotel has a business center with computer and printer no charge, a small clean pool area with hot tub and gazebo and loungers and table and chair areas as well. I also saw a small somewhat dated gym and a meeting room. There is also a free continental breakfast each morning, cereal, bagels, muffins, yogurt, juice, milk, waffles, fruit, hard boiled eggs and microwave. If you need more than that there is a TGI fridays, Dennys and convinience store within walking distance. The staff was incredibly helpful our friend needed to go to a drugstore and we had no car, and they drove her to walgreens free of charge. If you are looking for an affordable, clean place close to the airport with free shuttle, with great staff and basic amenities this is a very good choice. The only negative thing i will say is be careful of the insects outside, there are not a ton of them but while outside sitting i was bitten by the equivalent of a deer fly several times, so bring bug spray.

Day 2: Shuttle/Boarding

As recommended on cruise critic we booked the Cocoa Beach Shuttle for the 4 of us for 10;30am sun. 5/16, it was only $150 round trip total. They were about 15 mins. late picking us up but it wasn't that big a deal and our driver Tony was very apologetic. Tony was very courteous and helpful with baggage. Eventhough he had a full shuttle full of people he made an effort to talk to everyone on board and point out interesting facts and tell interesting stories the whole way from orlando to the port. He was a very good driver. Once at the port we gave our luggage to the porters and got in line. The whole process from stepping off the shuttle to getting on the Ship took maybe 35 mins. It was completely painless. Everyone we encountered at the port and Royal Caribbean Workers were very friendly and helpful.

Day 1-7 Freedom of the Seas Cruise Overview:

The first thing we thought once onboard was OMG!!I can't believe we are on this awesome beautiful ship!!! we had wanted to go on this Cruise since last may when we went on a cruise to the bahamas on the Carnival Sensation and saw the Freedom at Port Canaveral.

First of all the staff every one of them is amazing, always a smile or greeting, anything they could do to help, they were some of the friendliest people i have ever met. For example the 1st crew member we met jumped up and down with us, screamed omg!! omg!! with us girls, and high-fived the boys as soon as we set foot onboard. There were so many options on this ship for everything and anything, it was hard to compose yourself and figure out where to begin. Freedom is huge!!there are shops and restaurants and bars everywhere and it is very very breathtaking. Everything was spotless, and you could always catch someone cleaning something.

Freedom of the Seas Food:

Now i Know food is a big deal to a lot of people on here, but honestly I think a lot of you are too critical, all the food was good and I will break it down in categories as I review, but I mean come on people it's free and if you don't like something try something else, don't let it ruin your cruise.

Windjammer: We went for lunch as soon as we boarded at the windjammer, I have read many reviews saying how crowded it was, but honestly it wasn't. We had no problem finding an empty table, and the staff wasn't overwhelmed and was promt and brought our drinks for us. The restaurant itself was very clean and pretty and had beautiful views out the windows. The food was very good. Was it gourmet? NO but hello people, it's a buffet, and as buffets go I would rank it very high class/scale indeed. The variety of food was plentiful especially so if you included Jade. We had breakfast here everyday except the 2nd day because we ordered room service.(ill get to that later). We also had lunch here every day before we went or when we came back from the islands. We had dinner there the 1st night, and the 3rd nights.

The Main Dining Room:

We had My time dining for Gallileos. We loved my time dining, so easy. The main dining room is stunning, from the decor,to the view, to even the tableware. The food was amazing, the only things that were hit and miss food wise were the desserts, not the options but the actual taste. I am an adventerous eater and I got the oportunity to try the escargot and roast duck. Let me tell you the escargot may sound disgusting but it was delecious, the duck was also delicious. There was always great selection for meals and everything was always delecious. Our waiter Ernesto B. from the phillipeans was amazing, he was funny, friendly and very attentive. His assistent waiter Edwardo was also very efficient and friendly, these guys did an amazing job, and if we go on freedom again we will request them. The service by everyone was fantastic, we must have been asked by at least 4 people a day if they could get us anything and how everything was and what our comments were it was so nice. We ate here both formal nights and the last night.

Room Service: Honestly we were dissapointed with room service. The food was always good, and the room service attendent was always friendly, the service itself was just not that good. They messed up our order everytime we ordered, they gave us the wrong order once, and not enough meals twice. We didn't say anything though we feel bad complaning over such small things, so we just went to sorrentos or cafe promenade if we needed a snack. We did tip our room service guy though because he was so nice.

Sorrentos and Cafe Promenade:

We liked both these places for snacks or if we missed lunch or dinner. The food selection in both was very decent and the food was decent to very good. The pizza was usually good, not fantastic but very good, and they had different specials twice a day. the salad selection was poor, since they seemed to always have seafood in them and im allergic. The sandwhiches and cookies and pastries from the cafe were very good, and interesting sometimes. It's good to try new things, like the turkey sandwhich on the sesame twist with cranberrry sauce. If you can't find something you like to eat on this ship, that's youre problem because the options seem endless.


We didn't really go to any of the bars, when we drank we just walked around and drank, we don't like to be confined. We did see many of them though, and they always looked busy, they also had very cool art work. Boleros and the Pub always had live music too. the bars we did visit were the pub, and the crypt. The pub was cool and dark and had live music, the crypt was insane and fun and were sorry we only made it there on the last night, but its ok because we wound up partying till 4:30am It is very dark and goth with great decor and very good dance music.

Freedom of the Seas Production Shows:

There are endless entertainment options on board the Freedom of the Seas. If you don't see these shows you're really missing out. We saw the Sail away party on the deck, the Party around the World parade,which can i just say how insane is it that your ship has parades on it!!?, The once apon a time musical/comedy show. I would like to congratulate the crew on that show and the Freedom Ice show in particular, the acrobatics, gymnastics, and fantastic singing and dancing in those shows was unbelievably spectacular. We also saw The freedom Ice show as mentioned above, Olga and Dimitri were amazing., We pariticpated in the battle of the sexes show. Also we saw Drew Thomas Magic (amazing also), and the Love and Marriage show (hysterical) and of course who could forget QUEST? That was the most insane show I have ever participated in, thank god it's just for adults!! We also checked out the parade on the last day the Freedom Circus, which was also very good, but shorter and not as good as the first parade in my opinion. There was also a 70's dance party in the streets and beatle mania which we didn't go to but saw on the tv and looked like a lot of fun.

Freedom of the Seas Activites:

So much to do and not enough time to do it. We did a lot, and still missed a lot, and we loved every minute. We played mini-golf, rock climbed, swam, sat in the hot tub, used the solarium, played in the arcade, watched the sexy legs and belly flop contest etc. etc. This is definately a fun ship.

Allan Brooks our Cruise Director was amazing. He was funny, charming and knew how to get the crowd going. I think it helps a lot that he is relatively young and not some old stuffy guy, he really knows how to relate, we hope he will still be on the Freedom when we return in a year or two.

This was 3 of our groups 2nd cruise and our friend's 1st cruise. We sailed on the Sensation to the Bahamas last year. They claim that Carnival are the "fun ships" Im going to disagree on that. Last year it seemed like everything on carnival closed up shop by 9pm; pools, shops, restaurants everything.and there were not shows let alone multiple shows every night on carnival like there was on Freedom. We loved that there was always something to see, do, eat, someone to talk to even at 2AM on Freedom. Saying that I think I can safely say that unless the price is significantly cheaper or they have an itinerary that blows me out of the water, I will probably not sail carnival again. It's not that carnival was horrible, it wasn't, Royal Caribbean and the Freedom of the Seas just blew us away and blew Carnival out of the Water. Less

Published 05/25/10

Cabin review: JS7712 Junior Suite

We had JS 7712 Aft. It was fairly large and we never felt crowded and there were 4 adults in it. It was clean and well decorated. Our balcony was huge, we had 2 loungers, 2 chairs and a table and still had plenty of room. The view of the back of the ship was beautiful. You do see the structure of the ship in your view but it's not bad at all, just a beam horizontaly in your vision, not a wall. we had no touble seeing the ocean wether we were sitting or standing. However you can not look straight down into the ocean as there are more balconies and and extnded area under you. That didn't matter to us though. The only bad thing I will say is that we had a less than steller room steward. Sometimes when he came in to clean he would only make the beds and not clean the balcony (not of trash we always took care of that) but you could just tell it wasnt cleaned and our balcony door looked dingy some days. Also he didn't clean the bathroom at all a few days or he would leave the dirty towels on the floor and not give us any fresh. But besides that we loved the room and the view. It is a far walk to everything which is fine by us, because we like using the stairs and walking and we didn't gain any weight this way lol.

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Port and Shore Excursions

We decided to be beach bums in Cozumel. We got off the ship and went and did a little shopping in the center. I have to say I love bartering it's fun and you can get the prices pretty low, we got quite a few nice items. From there we grabbed a taxi on our own and went to playa mia. The taxi ride was 15 each way total for the 4 of us, and we got the premium package at playa mia which was $48/pp. It included beach, loungers, all non-motorized sports except snorkeling, free buffet, open bar for non-alcoholic and alcoholic beverages. It was hot but overcast and not crowded at all. We had fun getting our pics taken with the Parrots, especially after us girls each bought a picture and he came back and we could use our own cameras and take as many group pictures as we wanted with the parrots. We enjoyed lounging in the hammocks and sipping margaritas. We also tried the water trampoline which was hysterical and the iceburg which was impossible. It was a very clean, beautiful, relaxing place and well worth the money, we would go again.

Read 5470 Cozumel Reviews

When we went to Grand Cayman our group split up. Our 2 friends did the Cayman Half Shell tour (hell, boatswain's beach, rum factory, governors mansion) by, the check in is at the waterfront centre at the same location as Capt. Marvins. They said the tour was well worth the money and had some great pics. My husband and I after reading many reviews on decided to book a snorkeling excursion with captain marvins. It was a great excursion, we had about a 5 min, ride to captain marvin's house to board our boat,It was nice because there were probably only 20-25 of us passengers (Capt. marvin's doesn't pack them onboard like some other places we saw.) Mikey, Froggy and Javier were the crew members and photographer. They were all very friendly, knoweledgable about what we would see,and how to interact with the stingrays,fish and coral, and were glad to assist everyone with their gear getting down the ladder etc. There were also free non-alcoholic refrehments in a cooler which you could help yourself too. The boat was clean and well maintained and there was a small bathroom downstairs. We sailed about 30 mins out to the sandbar to play with the stinrays. I had done this last year in the bahamas in Nassau, and Stingray City in Grand Cayman was way better. The water was so clear you could see the bottom no problem, and the interaction with the stingrays was much better.It was my husband's first time and he was a little nervous and they helped him and everyone else be more comfortable with the rays, we were there for about 45 mins. After that we went to the barrier reef to snorkel, there was lots of interesting coral and only a few fish. From there we went to the coral gardens which was amazing, once again the water was amazing, and as soon as you looked in the water there were schools of tropical fish everywhere and a lot of interesting coral. When we got back to georgetown it was time to get on the boat tender. We were very impressed with Capt. Marvin's and the Water in G. Cayman, but honestly besides that the Island held no interest for us as we didn't go there to spend thousands in jewelery.

We loved Ocho Rios!!!!! I have read many negative reviews, and honestly I do not know why. When we arrived in port the view was breathtaking, especially from the aft. We had booked the Dune Buggy Tour Through Royal Caribbean through Chukka Farms. Once on board our shuttle from the port with our driver David, we were on our way to chukka. It was about a 40min. ride,we got to see a lot of the city , and much of the "bush" as they call it. David was very friendly and knowledgeable and told us a lot of interesting facts. We loved the Dune Buggy tour, you did a practice ride and then got to go on the trails, it was so much fun. It was beautiful and there were many secenic views. We stoped twice, once for free refreshments and pictures at the top of a mountain and then at the white river to go swimming. The white river was the clearest, most refreshing, most beautiful rivers i have ever seen. When the tour was over we returned to Chukka and had Jerk chicken and a few drinks and shopped. When we were all ready we were driven back to town and did some shopping at Island Village. The people here were not pushy, They asked you if you wanted to see something and if you said no, they only asked 1 more time and left you alone, they were all very friendly. The exception would be 1 woman on the way inside to Island Village who would not leave us alone and was in our face practically yelling for us to get our hair braided, she was hard to escape and we finally just had to ignore her. Also you can't walk 5 steps without being offered weed. It wasnt dangerous, just very annoying and we all politely declined.

Port Canaveral, is a clean and efficient port. Boarding for both our cruises has been quick and painless, all port staff encountered has been friendly and helpful. I only gave this port a 3, because I don't really know what there is to do in the area and how it is, and the port is alright looking but isn't particularly beautiful. It's just average in looks.

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