Voyager of the Seas Cruise Review by proud softball mom
- Sail Date: December 2011
- Destination: Western Caribbean
- Cabin Type: Interior Stateroom
Hotel: We stayed 2 nights prior to the cruise at the Hampton Inn Convention Center in New Orleans. This is not your typical "chain" hotel. Local ambiance, great fitness center, breakfast was wonderful, self laundry, exceptional proximity to pier - we walked to it. Valet parking only - $29 per night. Less than a mile walk to French Quarter.
Parking: We parked at Fulton Street parking garage for $12 per night for cruisers. It is a 1 block walk from the hotel to the parking garage. It is 2 blocks from the garage to the cruise port. Easily walkable with rolling luggage.
Cruise Embarkation: So very easy - took perhaps 15 minutes to get registered, etc. Waited for about 15 minutes to be allowed on the ship - we were in the first group to board the ship. Went right to Windjammer and "camped-out" while we ate and explored the ship. Note: the stateroom hallways were blocked off 'till 1:00pm. We could explore all of the public spaces though. It was way too cold to use the swimming pools, but we saw a few brave souls in the hot tubs!
Security/Luggage: Luggage did not arrive prior to first seating dinner. We got 4 of the 6 bags around 8pm. I packed a clothes steamer on one bag and held my bag. I scoured all of the travel documents and nowhere did it state that I couldn't bring a steamer - it says no irons. I was so angry that I didn't get my luggage because of this. The security people wanted to keep my steamer, I said No Way! I told them that I use it for medical reasons to steam my nose and they let me have it back. This is a completely stupid rule from RCCL and is a reason that I may not travel with them in the future.
Cabin: Small, inside, no natural light. This is exactly what we paid for so we were not disappointed or surprised. There as so many cubbies and places to store stuff. Our family of 4, over-packed, and still fit everything in the small room. We stored our luggage under the bed. We took giant trash bags to keep our dirty clothes in. Made great use of the in-room safe. The coffee table was in the way so we just stored it in the closet and gained additional storage room by doing this. Took command 3 storage clips to hang on walls for extra storage but didn't end up needing them after all.
Cabin Attendant: Wonderful! So nice. The first day he met us and even presented us with his business card. We got towel animals every night. He had to work extra hard because we had an accident on the bed. No problem, he took care of everything and told us not to worry about a thing.
Food: MDR food was not so good on the first few nights but got better at the end of the week. Best meals were, Garlic Tiger Shrimp, Onion Tart, Angel Food Cake with Strawberries. Overall, the appetisers were great and the desserts were not so great. The main meals were hit and miss. Did not eat lunch in the MDR. Ate breakfast in the MDR 1 day - not so good, we preferred Windjammer for breakfast. Windjammer had typical buffet food. Totally enjoyed the french fries! Also, on one afternoon around 3pm they had chocolate croissants that were great - never saw them again. Promenade: learned late in the cruise that on level 5 during lunch they have lunch stations. We enjoyed the Nachos, Ribs, and Bananas Foster! Yum. The Cafe Promenade is open 24 hours a day. This place is really strange. You can self serve for drinks but have to ask for someone to give you muffins, pizza, pudding, etc. One guy who worked here in the morning was a total jerk - the only employee that we came across the whole week who was like this.
MDR Service: Exceptional! No other way to say it. They work so hard to please you. Could not have been any happier! Best part of the entire cruise was the service we received from the MDR staff! Great Job!!!!
Drinks/Ice/Ice Cream: Wish you could access water, tea, lemonade at more places around the ship. We drink tons of water and had to go to Windjammer or Cafe Promenade to get it. Also, we like ice in our stateroom - you get this through room service - sort of strange to do this. Coffee stations at the ends on floor 11 ran all day. We get up really early, like 4am, and had to go to Cafe Promenade to get coffee. Ice cream stations also at the ends of floor 11 - for some reason these are only open from around 11am to around 6pm or so.
Bar service was good. Servers continually walk around the pool decks to get your order. Drinks were good - average price.
Entertainment: Really bad. Most shows say that they were produced by the Cruise Director so perhaps he just isn't that great of a producer or something. Ice skaters were ok. Movie musical review was horrible. Last night performance was really bad. I've seen tons better at Club Med!!!
On-board Activities: Sports court: Always busy, this place could use some love and refurbishment. They need drinking stations here. The water fountain is useless when the boat is moving the water just sprays in the air and not in your mouth. Rock climbing was the best. Basketball courts were always in use! The putt-putt is in need of renovations and is a bit dangerous when small kids don't know how to play. They can and do drive the ball from the putt-putt course clear to the rock climbing wall. They had a funky roller blading area that was never open when we went there. Demonstrations/Talks: We attended the napkin folding session - was pretty lame. The talk with the crew was really good though. Ice skating rink was cool, really enjoyed this. Santa came to visit, this was a nice touch and all of the kids got a little present while the adults got loaded on eggnog! Arcade: Always busy and fun. Children's club: Easy enough to register for, my son just didn't want to be there much - he went 2 times and had a good enough time.
Getting off the ships for ports-of-call: Cozumel and Jamaica both have piers so it is easy and quick. Grand Cayman uses small boats and let's just say that RCCL needs to improve this whole process. First, you have to wait in line for an hour to get a "number" to get off the boat. Then, you have to go sit in a public space for over an hour before your number is called. We were in the 2nd boat to leave the ship and we didn't get off the boat 'till after noon! This should and absolutely could be a better experience for all.
Disembarkation: We took our own luggage off the ship. They began letting this group off at 7:15am. We were through customs, met by the Fulton Street van, driven to the parking garage, in our van and exiting the parking garage at 7:36am. So easy!
Would I cruise on this ship again? Probably not - we've been there done that now. If I ever cruise again it would probably be on one that has more ports of call like Alaska. With 3,600 guests and over 1,200 employees, it was a crowded cruise. Too much time waiting around and hideous on board entertainment. I was happiest when I was at the port of call.
- Read more Royal Caribbean Voyager of the Seas Reviews
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Port & Shore Excursion Reviews
SnorkelingBooked via cozumelwatersports.com. $45 for adults. $5 advanced deposit, pay the balance upon check-in. Includes access to facilities, snorkeling, food, drink, shady spots, sunny spots.View All 312 Snorkeling Reviews
Food, drink, service were all great and plentiful. Be sure to tip these hard working employees!
The place was peaceful and very clean. We used the pools, beach, snorkeling, inflatables, bathrooms, beach service. It was great!
Strange was the attendant in the bathroom who also wanted a tip. Also strange were these guys who came around with birds and a diapered iguana and wanted you to hold them while they took your picture. Ok, so I got one of my boy holding the birds....
All inclusive isn't really all-inclusive. It did include access to most of the facilities except the water toys for kids to climb on. This was an additional $12 fee. They didn't charge the parent to be out their with their kid if they didn't climb. Also, towels are $4 each to rent with a $10 deposit. Take one from the ship instead!
The new lounge chairs on the beach were strung too tight and wouldn't lay flat. Get an old, worn in chair!
We took taxi service to and from the cruise port. 6 of us costs $32 each way. Took about 15 minutes or so. No problem getting taxi service.
FalmouthBooked independent driver Courtney Taylor.View All 1,150 Falmouth Cruise Port Reviews
Contact him at: firstname.lastname@example.org
He met us at the cruise port and took us on our own itinerary. He is your private drive and will take you wherever you want. Since he is from the island, he will give you lots of ideas on what to see and do.
He has a very nice air conditioned van. He took exceptional care of us and we felt totally safe in his presence.
We went to Dunns River Falls. This is a fairly long drive from the Falmouth cruise port; however, it was something that we really wanted to do! If you're ok with being in the van for the drive, then go for it. Dunns River Falls is hilarious! Very high waterfall that you climb up with the help of a guide. A group of about 25-30 people are assembled and you lock arms and are pulled up the waterfall in a chain! So fun but one of us fell.
We were scheduled to tube on a river, but didn't due to our family member's fall at Dunns River Falls.
We drove through the fern grotto - it was neat.
We went to an overlook, grabbed a red-stripe beer and enjoyed the scenery for a bit.
We went to a shopping strip and shopped for about 30 minutes. Note: we did NOT find that the prices were any cheaper than the prices at the pier. Also, we did not see that the quality of merchandise was any nicer than at the pier. Bottom line, just save yourself some time and shop at the pier instead.
We would absolutely use Courtney Taylor again. He was just great.
View Cruise Critic's Falmouth Cruise Port Review
Grand CaymanBooked the Rays, Reef, Rum tour via nativewaywatersports.comView All 1,055 Grand Cayman Cruise Port Reviews
I think it was $62.50 for adults, $50 for children. Lunch is included!
Eldon,the company owner met us at the cruise pier, and his wife, Sharon, took us to the boat via an air conditioned van. On board a double decker boat, we were hosted by Solomon and DJ. They were both teriffic. First we headed out to the stingray bar and we swam with, held, fed the sting rays for about 45 minutes to an hour. Totally awesome - best pictures of our entire vacation came from here. My son put on a snorkeling mask so that he could look underwater at the Rays - he really enjoyed this. Then we boated over to the reef that we snorkeled at. The water was rough and out of the 6 of us, only 1 ended up staying in the water the entire time. Lots to look at and Solomon pointed out sleeping Rays on the ocean floor, brought up Conch and pointed out things that I would have missed by myself. After snorkeling, we headed over to Rum Point for lunch. Had the best blackened mahi-mahi sandwich of my life there! This place was really nice, unfortunately, we didn't stay here too long because we had to get back to the ship.
We were met at the boat launch by Sharon who drove us back to the ship pier.
I very highly recommend Native Way Watersports. We would absolutely use them again!
This was clearly the best exursion we took this week.
View Cruise Critic's Grand Cayman Cruise Port Review