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Mariner of the Seas Review

5.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating
1262 reviews
4 Awards

Fantasic Family Vacation on the Mariner

Review for Mariner of the Seas to the Western Mediterranean
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GoldenRose
6-10 Cruises • Age 50s

Rating by category

Embarkation
Dining
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Additional details

Sail Date: Feb 2012
Cabin: Royal Family Suite
Traveled with children

We traveled with 3 generations - my mother, me and my husband, and our two children, ages 1 and 6. All of us enjoyed the cruise a lot. They set up one of the kids areas as an indoor play area for children under 3, which was a nice surprise. They also had a playground every morning for the babies, and allowed us to check out bags of age appropriate toys. This was an improvement over previous sailings with children under 3. Adventure Ocean was still great, and our son really enjoyed it on the occasions he went to visit.

The Main Dining Room was the biggest disappointment to us on this cruise. We were assigned to My Time Dining instead of the Main Seating as we purchased the cruise somewhat late. Even though we had a reservation at about the same time most nights, we kept getting assigned to different tables with different waiters. Not all were very good with getting food out fast to our young children. (One was particularly dreadful - we couldn't seem to get the waiter over to our table to take our orders, much less bring us anything.) This was a real change from previous cruises, when we had the same waitstaff, who made an effort to get to know us and have kid snacks either waiting or out quickly. I would not do My Time dining again, if I could avoid it. We ended up ordering a lot of room service. We also thought the food in the MDR was highly variable. Some dishes were very good... some really weren't. It sort of seemed to be luck of the draw. We did go to both Portofino and Chops, which were both excellent.

We thought much of the staff was wonderful. Luca, the Concierge, was absolutely wonderful. He was pleasant, helpful, and always available to help with anything. Our stateroom attendant was also great. He even took the time to give our son a private lesson in making towel monkeys, after the baby destroyed the towel monkey the attendant had left for us.

Cabin Review

Royal Family Suite

Port Reviews

Roatan

We did Gumbalimba Park and the Tabyana Beach Break. This was a wonderful day. At Gumbalimba Park, we played with monkeys, posed with macaws, and viewed agoutis, iguanas, and assorted birds. The Insectarium was interesting (think specimens of assorted preserved exotic bugs.) The fake pirate/history cave was a little cheesy, but it was air conditioned, so it was a nice break. Monkeytown was everyone's favorite part of the day, where the monkeys jumped on us and played and posed. We then went to Tabyana Beach, where we snorkeled, played on the beach, and had lunch. This is a great beach when there aren't too many ships scheduled to use it. (We were the only ship in port that day, and it was great. The other time we were there, there was another huge ship in port, and it felt overly crowded to us.) We thought the day was definitely a highlight of our vacation.

Belize City

We did the Wildlife River Cruise and the ruins of Altun Ha. We saw wild manatees, dolphins, crocodiles, bats, iguanas, a snake, lots of different birds, and multiple groups of monkeys on the river cruise portion. In the touring ruins portion, we were able to climb one of the large structures in Altun Ha. Even thought it was February, it felt hot at the ruins. I can't imagine doing this in warmer weather. They fed us a "typical" local lunch in the middle of the day - rice and beans, chicken, salad, and (not diet, diet was extra money) soda. There was a long bus ride (air conditioned) at the end of the day, but it was still a very pleasant day overall. Our guide was knowledgeable, and our boat driver had a great eye and was able to spot animals at great distance.

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