We drove to Ft. Lauderdale the day before the cruise and stayed in Dania Beach at the Wyndham Garden Inn on Federal Highway ($212 per night). The hotel was very nice and was five minutes from the port. The hotel also had several good restaurants within walking distance and we had a very good casual dinner at the Moonlite Dinner ( .75 miles ).
Embarkation - We drove to the port at 10:00 a.m. on Sunday morning . It took about 10 minutes to clear the port security gate because there were eight ships in port and 26,900 passengers going through embarkation. The Silhouette was docked at Pier 21, directly across from the Edge at Pier 25. Dropping the luggage was utter chaos, as traffic was very heavy on both piers and more than 500 departing people were still outside Pier 21 trying to get transportation away from the port. After considerable delay we were able to drop the luggage and parked in the adjacent midpoint garage ($15/day).
Following a short delay in security screening, we were greeted by an agent upstairs that asked a few health questions and scanned our check-in documents. They began boarding around 11:20 a.m. by cruise priority levels. Overall, the check-in process was very smooth and well organized in a terminal that was not designed for a ship this size. Upon boarding, we were instructed to go to your room to drop your carryon luggage; your sea pass card would be outside your room door - it was nice being able to access your room at the time of boarding - nice job! The ship was two hours late leaving due to the congestion and difficulty in getting the provisions loaded onto the ship.
Room - Our room, 6251, was like new, clean and well-maintained. Our room attendant, Nyoman, was outstanding - we could not have had a better attendant.
In Antigua we docked at the Heritage Pier and explored downtown on our own, a five minute walk.
We elected to stay on the ship since we have been here several times.
At this stop, we just walked into town to do some souvenir shopping. On this cruise itinerary, this island was the best by far for shopping due to the large number of stories near the pier with good prices (T-shirts -$12, hats -$5). Don’t forget to barter!