My best friend and I cruise every January/February to a warm spot where we can have sun and fun. We have mostly said on the Royal Caribbean ships. We chose this particular ship because it visited multiple ports and sailed out of San Juan--a guaranteed warm weather port. Last year we sailed out of Florida and essentially lost 2 days, one going and the other coming because it was too cold to be out on the deck sunning.
The embarkation was quick and easy. We took a cab directly to the port from the airport which was about $22 each way plus tip. We always use a taxi as we don't have to wait for the bus to fill up or unload our luggage. Getting off the ship was just as easy but as always, the earliest flight back for us required a four hour wait at airport so we take books and electronics to keep us occupied.
Our cabin had adequate closet and drawer space and was conveniently located midship. It does need updating and has the older television in the room but we have limited channels anyway and spend a total of 3 hours for the week watching anything. We get a balcony because we use the fresh air to dry our exercise clothes and bathing suits. We don't spend a great deal of time on the balcony. At least this time versus our previous cruise, the people on either side of us did not smoke. Last year we could not enjoy our balcony at all.
We play a lot of sports and try all the adventures on the ship. The miniature golf track is in immediate need of repair as the carpet has multiple tears. The exercise equipment is sufficient and space is large. They offer limited classes for a fee but most of the times were during our land tours. They need to update the types of classes offered and add rumba, jazzercise and aerobics. The food was very good. We had the late seating and managed to stay up for the shows which were okay. The newlywed game is fun for first time criers but it is so apparent that two of the couples selected had either heard of this game and knew the potential questions and had prepared their responses. Takes the fun out of watching.
We requested a large table at dinner so we could meet other guests but no one else ever showed up all week. Felt bad for our waiters as they lose out on the tips and we were disappointed not to meet new people. There were quite a number of empty seats all over. Our cabin steward was very nice and attentive. Overall, enjoyed the ship but again, can use updating.
The cabin had plenty of storage and closet space. The television is of the older brand. The balcony was spacious. The location was great at midship. This deck is very quiet. The room was clean and neat but could use updating.
We booked the snorkeling adventure to Buck Island through the ship. The captain did give instructions to first-timers and had a couple of crew members escort these folks in the water which was a positive for this trip. The water was very rough at the snorkel site and even the experienced snorkelers found it a little difficult. We both thought the captain had a little bit of attitude.
We booked independently with adventure antigua. They offer different tours and we selected the XtremeCircumnav tour which was about a 6 hour Miami vice type boat around the entire island. It is not for the feint of heart as you are out in the Atlantic at times and we happened to hit a day of rough waters and the swells took us up and down very hard. Don't do this if you have a bad back or other conditions which prohibit you from enjoying this trip safely. The crew were wonderful and took us to snorkel with the stingrays. The water was chilly but once you get used to it no problem. They pointed out all the historic, interesting and celebrity sites and took us into several marinas and got the updates on the mega yachts--mindblowing. We stopped for lunch at another beach site. It might be pricey for some but totally worth it.
We booked independently ATV Paradise Tours. We were picked up by taxi that the owner arranged and taken up to the site. He only takes a handful of ATVs each tour. You can double up or go single. We went single as we both like to drive. We went into the rain forest. He is a conservationist and gives great information. The path was definitely a challenge at times but that made it even more fun. He is building a great business. The cost was $150 each but this is not a run of the mill 2 hours ATV trip. I can't remember how long the tour was, 35 minutes there and 35 back but I think we were on the ATVs at least 3 hours. This is highly rated on other sites and I definitely recommend it also.
They picked us up at the dock and he scoured several beach sites for a suitable wave location. There were 3 of us. He gave us lessons on the board on shore and then took us in the water. He stayed with us the whole time and gave us more instructions and feedback. All three of us were able to stand up and surf the waves. It is very tiring so you need to be in decent shape. It was very reasonably priced at $75. Would definitely recommend.View All 1 Surfing Reviews