1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2018
Ship was in generally good shape. Some wear but upkept well. Clean roomy ship, bright and cheery. Easy on, easy off. Well organized and pleasant staff. We traveled with mostly folks from Great Britain (we’re from Chicago, USA) and ... Read More
Ship was in generally good shape. Some wear but upkept well. Clean roomy ship, bright and cheery. Easy on, easy off. Well organized and pleasant staff. We traveled with mostly folks from Great Britain (we’re from Chicago, USA) and they were terrific. Courteous and friendly. Main Dining. Generally, I enjoy eating at the dining room. I like the formality of dressing for dinner, accompanied by good food and service. However, the quality of the food in the main dining room has deteriorated in all cruise ships. Food is hit or miss. Had oso buco and instead of a full, meaty oxtail, braised if a rich sauce, was served a curled piece of thin cut of beef, curled and brown. Our main waiter was below average. Still learning his job. World disappear for long stretches and could not be found. Assistant server, top notch and attentive. Our steak and shrimp combo dinner came without the shrimp. Our waiter didn’t notice or didn’t care. We had to bring to his attention at which point he would try to correct. I’m sure good help is hard to find, and it shows. Our waiter gave us the feeling that he was hoping we would just leave him alone. Buffet: Better than average. I detest most buffetts but this one was good. Good abundant selection, good variety. Ate here often for quick satisfying meal, mostly breakfast but also lunch an dinner a few times. Clean and well presented choices. Specialty dining, very good. Chops food and service fantastic. Great appetizers, bacon, shrimp cocktail, Caesar salad, bone in rib eye, filet and desert. Top notch food, good wine selection and great professional service. Ate at Giovanni’s table. Also very good but not great. Kids really liked Johnny Rockets. Entertainment was world class. Great shows, talented staff, enjoyed main theater almost every night. Comedians, hypnotists and the ever-talented singers and dancers very enjoyable. Ice show was fun. Enjoyed casino, every night. Not enough poker. Went to yoga class, used steam room, sauna. Kids hung out at teen club, nice athletic activity center, rock climbing wall, plenty to do. Pools nice but never enough chairs. Went to cigar lounge, enjoyed a quality cigar. We played bingo, lost. My son won the Star Wars trivia contest. Also, won 2nd place in archery contest. The itinerary was out of this world. Gibraltar (wife attacked by apes—she’s ok) , Alicante, Spain (beach, reat tapas and gelato winding through narrow city streets), Mallorca overnight (beach, party like a Mediterranean), Sardinia (great coffee in historic villa) Cadiz (walled city, beach and cathedral) Lisbon’s, city tour on foot) Good value trip in exotic, less traveled western Mediterranean beach cities. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
This is our first Cruise with Royal Carribean. The ship had everything our teenage son could wish for and he loved the fact he was safe to go about things by himself. The weather has been glorious and we managed to see some amazing ... Read More
This is our first Cruise with Royal Carribean. The ship had everything our teenage son could wish for and he loved the fact he was safe to go about things by himself. The weather has been glorious and we managed to see some amazing electrical storms whilst at sea. We had the most amazing Panoramic room on floor 12, so high yet gave us amazing views. Most of the staff were very pleasant, especially our stateroom attendant D-Roy, a huge gentle giant with a laugh to match. We were particularly impressed with his display of towel animals he left for us every night.....the big let down for us was the poor quality of food, service and cleanliness in both of the main restaurants, yes we did complain however the reason for these failings was 'these things happen' so after already paying thousands of pounds for the holiday we then had to pay for additional meal packages so that we could eat a meal in one of the speciality restaurants. After discussions with others who had been on the same ship last year, they confirmed the quality in both main restaurants was substandard and clearly noticed a declined this year. Clearly Royal Carribean need to look at what's changed and address their failings in this specific area. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
It is a nice ship but I think it does need attention in some areas. The cabin was nice and of a good size, however, the doors to the balcony were very stiff and you had to slam them hard. The balcony itself was in need of a bit of ... Read More
It is a nice ship but I think it does need attention in some areas. The cabin was nice and of a good size, however, the doors to the balcony were very stiff and you had to slam them hard. The balcony itself was in need of a bit of maintenance ie. painting. Outside our cabin the carpet had a musty smell. We did mention it and they did attempt to deal with it and it was better but not solved completely. The food was good in the dining room and the food in the speciality restaurants was excellent, although you do have to pay extra. The entertainment was of a good standard on the whole. Most of the staff were friendly and attentive however there were a few that clearly missed the customer service training. Our biggest problem was the number of children and the fact that there were not enough adult only areas. I have to take my holiday in school holidays now so don't have a choice, but I will not do a cruise again this time of year. Although there was plenty of things for them to do, some thought it was a good game playing in the lifts and running up and down the stairs and along the corridors. Not wishing to sound snobbish but standards do seem to have slipped. Cruising used to be a luxury. We enjoyed the ports of call mainly Barcelona, Valencia and Malaga. We had plenty of time in Barcelona (2 days) however, we had very little time in Valencia which was a real shame. We don't do the excursions as we feel these are far too expensive. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2017
Great cruise option for families- we loved it and re booked whilst on board. Great food, bars and activities for all ages and interests. Never cruised before so initially disappointed by cabin, basically kitted out with few luxury ... Read More
Great cruise option for families- we loved it and re booked whilst on board. Great food, bars and activities for all ages and interests. Never cruised before so initially disappointed by cabin, basically kitted out with few luxury touches. However it did the job perfectly well if we kept it tidy!! Cabin steward great. Windjammer very busy but served excellent food of a very high standard. We nick named it the crazy café though as it was so busy, we were put off by the plastic plates and fellow cruisers pushing and shoving. Main dining room excellent with great table service. Menu got repetitive towards end of 2 weeks. Pools small filled with sea water. Would do better with 1 larger pool with designated areas. Entertainment surprisingly good- go to see the shows they are great. They don't last too long to take up all your time. Bar service very good with highly trained staff. Some a little crowded with little sitting space which could be frustrating. My child was 11 turning 12 on this holiday. He was in between both kids club ages and felt didn't fit into either. He enjoyed the flowrider, climbing wall and golf. Travelled during school holidays so as expected lots of kids. Number of feral kids wandering about playing in lifts and running un checked was a problem. A fellow cruiser even felt bullied and intimidated by them. This would be my suggestion to RC- to put on some security to prevent kids getting too out of hand- whilst letting them enjoy the safety and freedom cruising allows. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
We needed a holiday where one of us would absorb the sun, one could explore the various cities and the 9 year old child would not be bored. All boxes were ticked. After years of being frustrated at airports and seeing and doing the same ... Read More
We needed a holiday where one of us would absorb the sun, one could explore the various cities and the 9 year old child would not be bored. All boxes were ticked. After years of being frustrated at airports and seeing and doing the same old things on package holidays, we've finally found the perfect way to holiday. If anybody tells you that it's too expensive, just remind them you get what you pay for. From the minute we stepped out of the car at Southampton we were treated with courtesy, respect and efficiency. Within 1 hour we were sat in the Schooner bar with our first drinks. Worryingly i was called to Guest Services within the hour to ask me to inspect one of our cases for an unidentifiable item. Fear not, when i realised what they had found on the x-ray machine i was more than impressed of the security measures in place. The interior cabin was not over-sized but was sufficient for 2 adults and 2 children. We slept, showered and dressed in it. If you want to see the open sea, you will have enough opportunities on deck. Also there is enough room for storage if done correctly. We did the 'My time dining', which was ideal if the child/ren are in their respective clubs although he did attend once with us, under protest. The windjammer cafe has everything you would wish for and more if you want to be totally relaxed. The daily itinerary or/and entertainment was unbelievable and catered for absolutely everyone. I attended art auctions, lectures, quizzes and the belly flop championships to name but a few.The evening shows in the theatre were exceptional, from family entertainment to adult humour. The service we received from everyone was explicable, they could not do enough for you. The gratuities were cancelled on day one, as recommended by seasoned cruisers, and the state room attendant, favourite bar staff and favourite waiter were tipped handsomely at the end of the cruise. As mentioned initially, the wife stayed on board whilst i visited all the ports. As it was our 1st cruise we didn't book any shore excursions but in future i would book particular ones which suit. Although i feel a little expensive for families they are allegedly well organised. We did hear that on this particular cruise, some people were saying 'there were too many kids on board'. For goodness sake, kids make holidays and if those people want none or fewer children, book in school term time and go with P&O or Cunard with an elderly contingent. I will finish by saying that my wife and 9 year old child had an amazing time and have booked again already for next year ;-). Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
We have travelled as a family with Royal caribbean for a number of years on different ships. Our age group ranges from now 7 to 81 with a teenager and us early 50's in the middle. We do like all that the company has to offer hence ... Read More
We have travelled as a family with Royal caribbean for a number of years on different ships. Our age group ranges from now 7 to 81 with a teenager and us early 50's in the middle. We do like all that the company has to offer hence staying loyal to them. We went on the navigator last year and as a slightly different itinerary we decided to go on Her again this year, plus we prefer to travel from Southampton. As always we had no problems with our embarkation and settling in to life on board. The staff were all extremely helpful and attentive and as we had got on first thing, we were able to appreciate all the shiney cleanliness that you get on your first day! We had booked a corner aft cabin on deck 10 and as we had been on the ship last year, we had already seen what the cabin was going to be like so we were really excited. it didn't disappoint. It was slightly wider than cabins in the past which was great as my daughter is getting bigger so we need a bit more space so as not to fall over each other! The cabin was kept lovely and clean throughout our cruise and at one point when my husband had hurt himself and was confined for a few days, the attendant looked after him with fresh ice packs regularly. The food was great and we ate most of our meals in the main Dining Room. We did eat at Sabors one night which has been turned into an Indian Restaurant for European sailings rather than the Mexican theme. It was nice, although the main courses were very spicey. Personally we preferred the Mexican last year but as I say, it was still nice and at $19 per head extra that was a good deal. The entertainment was typical RCI and easy going. For me the highlight of the entertainment was Comedian and Vocal Impressionist Darren Day. He was fantastic and I recommend everyone to go and see him if you get chance on any future cruise. There seemed to be more to do on the last 2 days at seas as well with a circus parade down the Main Promenade which was a light relief from the packing!! Outside, as with last year, they could quite keep on top of the water between the two pools and there were a number of accidents resulting in both adults and children wearing casts on their legs or arms. On an extremely positive note, on day 4 of our cruise, they introduced LifeGuards to this Ship. There was one based at every pool, including the adult only one. Apparently they are being put on every ship in the fleet. It didn't stop us watching our own children with our group, but it did give you peace of mind and meant you could relax a little more. We had a drinks package as I think the prices are quite high and it was beneficial that we did. I was disappointed though that my nephew who had the soda package was only allowed soda........not even water!!! Maybe I didn't expect it to be so literal and assumed that they would want to encourage kids to drink water as well rather than loads of E numbers to make them hyper!!! A downside for us, hence to title of this review was the kids club. My daughter complained of a lad picking on her in the club so I raised it with the Staff. They totally denied it yet as I was waiting for my daughter to get ready when I was collecting her, I heard the staff inform 4 separate parents that their children had been hitting other kids and were therefore on a last warning before being excluded from the club. We again raised it but once again it was denied. Luckily though my daugher had met a friend so she didn't spend as much time in the club this year as in the past and I suspect that as she gets older she will want to do more things in and around the pool. The only other downside for us was that the casino on here is still a place where you can smoke indoors. There are designated areas but obviously the smoke will drift over. Again, that is personal to us as we are not smokers. We didn't go on any organised excursions so I can't comment on that. Most places though were within walking distance. The only place we thought was a bit of a waste of time was Valencia. This was because we arrived early in the morning on a sunday when there was little or nothing open and we left early in order to get to Malaga the next day. There were quite a few people who stayed on the ship that day as well. We had an overnight stay in Barcelona and that was nice as something different as it took the pressure off coming back to the ship on time. We love Gibraltar but unfortunately we never seem to stay there long enough! Would we go again? yes definitely. In fact we had already booked our 2018 cruise five months before going on this one!! We do love cruising and everything about it. I love the variety of entertainment; the ease at getting off in port (even though we have done all the ports now but that isn't an issue for us); the standard and general quality of the kids entertainment (despite what I said earlier) and above all, the safety of cruising. They take the security of the Ship very seriously as they should and this, for us, adds to being able to relax more. My daughter loves it and my teenage nephew found there was more than enough for him as well. All in all, we enjoyed the Ship. Next year we are back on the Independence after her refurb so it will be a few years before we consider the Navigator again, but we will consider her. Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
Two weeks on board this lovely ship. The friendliest crew,great entertainment and amazing food. Cabin number 8328 and brother and sister in law in 8326 balcony. Fantastic rooms and opened balcony divider which was fantastic as made it ... Read More
Two weeks on board this lovely ship. The friendliest crew,great entertainment and amazing food. Cabin number 8328 and brother and sister in law in 8326 balcony. Fantastic rooms and opened balcony divider which was fantastic as made it really easy to relax all together. Sebastiao our attendant was really good making different animals each night with the towels. Very clean room and fresh towels each day. Kettle,fridge and hairdryer in cabin. Cabins really good size with plenty of storage. Raymond (Mr washy washy hands ) fantastic each morning greeting us into the windjammer every morning. Entertainment manger Cuddy was fantastic. Must see comedians and hypnotist fantastic entertainment. Saw lots of acts Bohemian (queen tribute) worth seeing and four men doing rock threw the decades excellent. Swimming pools good and jacuzzi were very good. Party down the promenade is a must to see Lots of food to choose from was very good only downside sometimes could of been hotter. Would recommend this ship and would deffo go back on board. Excursions gaudies Barcelona and cathedral Majorca a must to see. Overall one fantastic holiday Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
Everything about the cruise was outstanding. Food was delicious with a large variety of choices. and Rosebeth and Rey, (Sapphire restaurant) who served us were friendly, polite and very informative about the ports of call. They made a ... Read More
Everything about the cruise was outstanding. Food was delicious with a large variety of choices. and Rosebeth and Rey, (Sapphire restaurant) who served us were friendly, polite and very informative about the ports of call. They made a great effort with our children and even prepared foods off the menu to cater for their needs. Entertainment was 1st class and my 2 children aged 14 and 16 had a great time and made many friends, due to the first night teenage meeting group. There was plenty of room on the sundecks, for either shade or sun. The gym had a large variety of equipment, which my husband and son enjoyed using every other day. The cities visited were interesting for all, whether you wanted to see historical sites, beaches or just for shopping. All staff couldn't do enough for you. I'd just like to mention Cuddy's meditation class - absolutely brilliant - both my husband and I have really benefited from this seminar. I can't wait until our next cruise. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
First cruise and was chosen due to me recently diagnosed with MS and hav mobility issues, drove to Southampton to join the cruise which was ideal and so straight forward with parking and access to ship. Had reservations about if our 2 ... Read More
First cruise and was chosen due to me recently diagnosed with MS and hav mobility issues, drove to Southampton to join the cruise which was ideal and so straight forward with parking and access to ship. Had reservations about if our 2 children aged 12 and 7 would enjoy? No need to have worried, they both loved it and more than enough for them to do. Food in the main dining room was excellent with plenty of choice and accommodating to a fussy 7 yr old eating requests! Entertainment was spot on, more casual dining was also good which we used for breakfast and snacks. We were also pleased that on formal evenings, being smart was sufficient, men were not required to wear suits or even a jacket if they did not wish to, this suited us as we did not want to get too dressed up, we like to relax on holiday. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2017
We travelled on our very first cruise (Navigator) with RCI in 2016 and booked this cruise onboard last year. Being our second cruise (Navigator) we had things to compare it with and firstly we found that the food in the main dining room ... Read More
We travelled on our very first cruise (Navigator) with RCI in 2016 and booked this cruise onboard last year. Being our second cruise (Navigator) we had things to compare it with and firstly we found that the food in the main dining room was not as good as last year, however the windjammer was excellent. The staff were tremendous, they were always happy and very helpful and we cannot fault them in any way. With the issues we had with the cleanliness of our room I must say that RCI dealt with it professionally and very quickly. Last year we had an interior room but this year we opted for a balcony, we can honestly say it's the balcony every time from now on, fresh air and beautiful views. We have booked with RCI for next year on the Independence (after the refit) and cannot wait to sail again. Thank you RCI for another wonderful holiday and see you next year. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2017
I would definitely comeback. Cabin was excellent, food was delicious at anytime, plenty of variety. Staff were friendly and always happy to help. Sooo much to do for adults, children, never a moment to feel bored. Even with the amount of ... Read More
I would definitely comeback. Cabin was excellent, food was delicious at anytime, plenty of variety. Staff were friendly and always happy to help. Sooo much to do for adults, children, never a moment to feel bored. Even with the amount of people you could fine a space just for yourself if you need it. Ice skating show was breathtaking, amazing!!! Entertaining overall was good, shows for the public to take part were hilarious, such a laugh, contagious!!!! . Loved the fact that if you missed a show they were live recorded and broadcast on tv in the rctv the next day. Emergency drills took part a few times, was good to see them in action. Drink packages were too expensive at first when booking, so I didn't bought one, then when there I regretted it, buying as you go IS expensive, so next time for sure will buy one. Holidays of my life Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
After six cruises with P&O we thought we would try Royal Caribbean as they were offering a very good deal at the time we need to go...during the school holidays. Embarkation went very smoothly and we were very excited to depart. ... Read More
After six cruises with P&O we thought we would try Royal Caribbean as they were offering a very good deal at the time we need to go...during the school holidays. Embarkation went very smoothly and we were very excited to depart. The cabin was nice and comfortable although not as clean as it could have been. We were not overly impressed by the ships layout, everything seem to centered around a street in the middle of the ship. Not so many nice places to sit and have a drink or be entertained. If you wanted to see an entertainer you would have to go into the theater. The furniture was very tired looking and reminded me of a retirement home, and the rest of the ship was looking a bit tired. On deck there were numerous sun loungers which were not in the best condition and did not feel very clean. There were no areas where you could sit down and have a drink on deck, no tables and chairs in the sunshine, which makes it difficult to go out on deck and have to try and sit on a sun lounger all the time. The ports of call were great and easily accessible from the ship. The information from the captain was difficult to hear and understand. The atmosphere on deck on sail away days was very disappointing, sometimes we didn't know we had left a port. The food was very good and the service in the dining room was exceptional. Overall it was an enjoyable holiday, but I would have to think hard and really research the ship before embarking with RC again. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
Having sailed RCI Previously in Independence's inaugural season, and having sailed Celebrity to the Baltic last year we wanted to try a cruise to the Med from Southampton.This will be our last cruise during the summer holidays, and ... Read More
Having sailed RCI Previously in Independence's inaugural season, and having sailed Celebrity to the Baltic last year we wanted to try a cruise to the Med from Southampton.This will be our last cruise during the summer holidays, and with the current RCI format, a new vessel is required or the current two majorly updated and more space given to adult only areas. And the ship needs the correct level of policing, my son at 13 is 6ft 3 tall and he was intimidated by the possies of children wondering around the ship. We booked direct with the line, rather than through an agent. Taking our kids with us, Son 13 and Daughter 29 we were going to book two cabins but the Rep stated that we wouldn't need one. We had specific requirements for our cabin, including twin beds for them and a privacy curtain which we were assured would be provided. Arriving on board at 11:30 smoothly, we found that we had to find somewhere to sit with our hand luggage until 15:00 when the cabins would be ready, all space quickly filled up and it was impossible to get into, let alone eat in the Windjammer. On arriving in our cabin we were horrified to realise that none of our requirements had been met, the drawers in the vanity unit were all broken, the door hanging off of the wardrobe and many other issues. We joined the lengthy queue at guest services, we stated that we had booked the cabin and cruise based on the specific requirements that had been promised and that none of our expectations had been met! I wished to talk to a senior member of the guest services team, to be informed that the person would not be on duty until 7. We were so disappointed that my wife and I discussed leaving the ship at this point, but were convinced not to as a solution would be found. We me the Desk Services Manager, who was very apologetic, very professional, but we were then informed that because the ship was full there was nothing that could be done about the cabin requirements and that the privacy curtains were removed from the vessel two years previously. however the ship would rig up a curtain and repairs the broken items in the cabin. This meant that we gave up our double bed, converted to singles and had to sleep on a sofa bed for the entire cruise, having spent the best part of £8500 I find this appalling, but I must add not the ships fault. To add to the disappointment of this cruise was the failure of the vessel to police it properly, kids in the bars unaccompanied, groups of youths playing on the gym equipment, children as you as 8 wondering around the ship gone midnight, plates and cups etc left in corridors, stairs and lifts, passengers attending dinner in shorts clearly against the dress code and more covered in previous reviews. However, we found the crew very good and professional, the food in the main dining room excellent, (better then Celebrity) good quality wine, Windjamer food of a good standard, entertainment was good. The itinerary was also very good. All in all it was not worth the money spent, RCI have lost the edge they started with in Southampton that really shook up UK cruising, we have some good memories from this cruise but far to many poor experiences to want to repeat it. If you want Benidorm of the Seas then this is for you, if not, go out of holiday time pay the school fine it'll save you a fortune. To add to the disappointment of this cruise was the failure of the vessel to police it properly, kids in the bars unaccompanied, groups of youths playing on the gym equipment, children as you as 8 wondering around the ship gone midnight, plates and cups etc left in corridors, stairs and lifts, passengers attending dinner in shorts clearly against the dress code and more covered in previous reviews. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
This was our 5th cruise with RCI, the third one sailing from the UK as a group of 3, myself, hubby and teenage daughter. We arrived in Southampton at 9.45am and were guided to park the car right under the front of the ship. Our luggage ... Read More
This was our 5th cruise with RCI, the third one sailing from the UK as a group of 3, myself, hubby and teenage daughter. We arrived in Southampton at 9.45am and were guided to park the car right under the front of the ship. Our luggage was collected immediately, so we had time to visit the shops in the city centre before returning to the terminal. Embarkation was very well organised, and we were called to board as soon as the ship was ready. Disembarkation in Southampton was smooth, with timed departures and luggage was easy to find. Access to cabins was at 2pm. Our cabin (inside on deck 10) was immaculately clean, and was well maintained throughout our cruise. The furniture and bathroom are starting to show their age and look at bit dated but everything worked, the beds were comfortable and there was sufficient storage space for our clothes etc. We had plenty of fluffy white towels and extra pillows. We had dinner iat 8.30 pm in the main dining room for 13 out of the 14 nights. Service was excellent, and the meals were always hot, well presented and tasted great. Having read reviews about the quality of the food before sailing I was a little apprehensive, but can honestly say the food was fine. We ate in the Windjammer when we returned from our day in Florence/Pisa but preferred the service of the MDR. Breakfast and lunch was in the Windjammer. As usual, the WJ was very busy at peak times and there are too many tables in the space at the back of the ship, which makes it difficult to move around. We found it easier to sit at a table along the side of the buffet rather than in the main dining area at the back of the ship. There was a good selection of hot and cold meals, and desserts. Wait staff were happy to bring any drinks to the table and cleared tables quickly. Cafe Promenade had a great selection of snacks/pizzas/sandwiches etc each day. Bar service was generally ok. Some bar staff were very pleasant, others less so. The poolside bars were very busy and understaffed at peak times. Entertainment in the theatre was great, we enjoyed all of the headliner shows and the ice show was excellent. The RC singers, dancers and musicians performing in the theatre were great but the musicians and singers in the bars around the ship were not so good. They were lacking in lots of ways, poor vocals from tired looking performers, following the same RC script - time for a change! We had seen the ventriloquist in 2015 on a different RC ship and his act was exactly the same in 2017. We had also seen the same promenade shows on the Brilliance and Independence (70s dance party and Rock Britannia). Although the cruise compass had a lot of activities listed each day, there were a number of things that were really sales presentations. There were poolside competitions, plenty of open climbing and skating sessions, and quizzes. Empty sunbeds on the pool decks were hard to find, lots of towels on beds but no occupants! We could usually find somewhere quiet to sit as we weren't wanting to sunbathe during the day and our late dinner time meant we could enjoy the evening sunshine when there were fewer people by the pool. We left Southampton at 4.30pm Saturday, and arrived in Gibraltar at around midday on Tuesday. Gibraltar was a disappointment. I had prebooked tickets for the cable car and nature reserve, but wasted my money. The ship docked late morning, so by the time we got to the cable car station it was very busy. We queued for about an hour (prebook does not mean fast track, you just don't have to wait in the first long queue to buy your tickets, but still have to wait in the next long queue to get in the cable car) before deciding to abandon our visit or risk missing the ship sail! A taxi from the ship to the top of the rock would have been far better in the limited time we had in port. After leaving Gibraltar at around 5pm, we had another full day at sea before our next port of call on Thursday. With hindsight I realised that we had spent a lot of the first week of the trip at sea as Gibraltar was only a short afternoon stop. Villefranche required tender boat tickets which were timed. We were told not to get tickets until we were ready to leave the ship so had breakfast then went to get our tickets. We then had a wait of 1.5 hours before our slot at 11 am. The ticket process did prevent massive queues for the tender boats but meant leaving the ship later than we would have liked. We were happy to wander around the very scenic town, and visited the Citadel, but it would have been tricky to travel independently outside of Villefranche with the limited time window ashore. Civitavecchia for Rome: We have been to Rome before so knew exactly what we wanted to see and do. I had booked train tickets on the fast train from Civitavecchia to Termini in the UK. We arrived in Rome just before 10am, spent 4 hours visiting the places we wanted to see, and were back in Civitavecchia before 3pm. We took the shuttle bus from the ship to the drop off point, then the public bus (2 euros each per journey) to the station. I think we left the ship at 7.45am for a train at 9.16am and had about 20 mins to wait on the platform for our train. Livorno: I had booked an excursion to Florence and Pisa with TuscanyBus for 38 euros each. We took the shuttle to the centre of Livorno where we met our guide and driver. The trip was excellent. We had enough time to explore Florence and see the tower in Pisa and were back at the shuttle stop for transfer to the ship at the stated time. Genoa: Another port with an early sail time (all aboard at 3.30pm), which limited what you could do independently. We walked along to the harbour, took a land train tour of the city (8 euros each) and then visited the aquarium (25 euros each). Another sea day then Malaga: We walked from the ship, past the beach, along the waterfront to the shopping area and walked back through the gardens to the port entrance. Malaga was a pleasant stop. Last stop was Lisbon. The ship docked at around midday so another late start! We enjoyed exploring Lisbon on our own, visited the Castle and had great views of the city. There were lots of people offering trips by taxi or tuk tuk as we left the terminal so plenty of choice. Overall, we enjoyed our trip and thought it represented good value for money. We will travel with RC again, but would look more carefully at the timings before booking our next trip. This was a long trip (in total we travelled over 6,000 miles) but the route had a lot of time at sea and the ship was crowded in places on those sea days, especially the pool areas. Also, the RC entertainment format for a UK sailing seems to be very much the same, so we are probably ready for a change! Read Less
12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
This was our second cruise having previously sailed to the Canaries on the Explorer. We booked this one for it's itinerary and the fact we would feel at home on a similar ship. Family of 4 with a teenage daughter and an 8 year old ... Read More
This was our second cruise having previously sailed to the Canaries on the Explorer. We booked this one for it's itinerary and the fact we would feel at home on a similar ship. Family of 4 with a teenage daughter and an 8 year old boy. Pro's Embarkation was trouble free, although with the park and ride system we arrived later that on the previous cruise and had to queue for about 30 minutes. Not too painful. Once on board the ship was laid out as per the Explorer and we instantly felt at home. Wandered up to the Windjammer which was very busy but as always great selection and quality of food with lots of waiters on hand to assist with drinks, clear tables etc. The food was of an excellent standard and no complaints could be made around the Sapphire dining room. Shaun and Hank were our waiters and always chirpy and efficient serving great food and amusing the kids at the same time. We had the my time dining and other than a couple of late days usually ate at 6pm. Shame about the formal evenings with people in shorts and one night a gentlemen eating dinner with a baseball cap on! (basic manners) The headline shows were quite good with a wide variety of stuff over the 2 weeks although talking to a fellow cruiser more regular than I, stated the entertainment is the same as 5 years ago! We had seen the queen tribute act on the Explorer 2 year previous. The Tenors of rock were great and brought a bit of Vegas to the ship. The ice dancers were also very good as expected. As previously stated the service is second to none (crowds apart which I will address below) with the stateroom attendant always on hand for anything we needed (more coffeeeee please) and the bar staff really did try their best in trying conditions. Dewar in the R Bar is possibly one of the most overworked but cheery people I have ever met and always greeted us with a smile and a chat. As previously stated we chose this cruise for the itinerary, so: Gibraltar - lovely place, had a quick whistle stop tour on one of the local taxis (£25 per head) and can thoroughly recommend them. Would have preferred a bit longer there. Villefranche -Beautiful just beautiful. We decide with the weather not to go on a trip and to use this location for a beach day and what a lovely day it was. Civitavecchia - Booked an RCI trip for this one getting dropped at the colosseum for about 1.5 hours, then Spanish steps and Trevi fountain for an hour or so and finally a trip to the Vatican. Didn't have time to go in the colosseum but queued (in 32 degrees) to go into the basilica and Wow! Glad we did, amazing history. Beautiful city spoiled by aggressive beggars and hawkers. Livorno - Again decided not to travel to Florence or Pisa so just had a walk around the town. It was a Saturday and the market was in full flow. The town had a nice village vibe about it but unfortunately there were still some beggars hanging around the touristy bits (McDonalds lol) Genoa- Walked into the centre, smelt of urine, drunks everywhere, hawkers constantly in your face - Never again! Honestly unless on a trip, do not get of the ship at this port. Malaga - Beautiful, clean, friendly and a welcome respite after our previous experience in Italy. Lisbon - Another beautiful European city which we would loved to have spent more time in. It has that cosmopolitan feel with outside cafes and bars with families and well dressed folk eating and drinking. Even the street performers were cheery and in no way intimidating (as per Rome and Genoa) Cons This is a biggie and the reason why we probably will try a different cruise line next time. We will definately also be taking the next one outside the school holidays and happily pay the fine. It would appear that some people think that once on the ship you just dish out the sea pass cards to your offspring and meet them (I assume at a designated area) on disembarkation day! From day one there were marauding groups of kids from 8 up to 16/17 years old running around the ship for the whole fortnight. Don't get me wrong I have two of my own and not a grumpy old man (debatable) but it does wear a bit thin waiting 5 minutes for a lift to arrive and 8 kids run out giggling and you then visit every deck of the ship. One morning on exiting our cabin, all the Do not disturb cards were strewn along the corridor with glasses knocked over and food just chucked on the floor. One night the noise of a group giggling and banging in their cabin didn't stop till about 0330 so quite irritating. The 0100 curfew seemed to be ineffective . Lots of people have stated the bar staff have been rude but I must say (listen up RCI) there are simply too many people on this ship with not enough bar staff. Remember you are catering to Brits. With all you can drink packages. What do you think is going to happen? The bar staff do their best but are overwhelmed with our British, ahem habits. All in all a great cruise but tempered by the gangs of kids and the almost impossibility of getting a seat in the evening on sea days. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
This cruise was amazing on Navigator of the seas a fantastic ship. My initial thought on cruising was its for the more mature aged traveler how wrong was i. Cruising caters for all ages we went as a family of four including an 18 yr old ... Read More
This cruise was amazing on Navigator of the seas a fantastic ship. My initial thought on cruising was its for the more mature aged traveler how wrong was i. Cruising caters for all ages we went as a family of four including an 18 yr old and 8yr old. You can do as much or as little as you like. The facilities were fantastic, excursions, shows, entertainment, pools, restaurants, bars, shopping, golf, etc etc it has it all a very clean ship. All staff on board were outstanding Our room attendant was so helpful and polite. Also a big thank you to our main dining room waiters who gave excellent service and great recommendations regarding food and drink. The fine dining options offers food of an outstanding quality. Main dining room and buffet options are very good at giving you plenty of food options. The ship in my opinion catered for everyone excellently keep doing what you do its the best holiday i have been on to date and i will someday return. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
We decided to book this cruise as it ticked all of our boxes for a family and for our first cruise! The ship caters very well for all age groups of children The Teen Club was a good meeting point for our eldest aged 17 sadly our 11 year ... Read More
We decided to book this cruise as it ticked all of our boxes for a family and for our first cruise! The ship caters very well for all age groups of children The Teen Club was a good meeting point for our eldest aged 17 sadly our 11 year old felt the age 9-11 group was a little too young for her in the activities. We did all of our homework before the trip and decided to discover the Port or nearby City Town by ourselves by all accounts this was the best idea - we managed to see an do everything on our wish list and without any hitch ! We watched most of the entertainment either in the Theatre or on the Ice Rink and Yes we fully enjoyed !! Food was delicious in the Saffire Dining Hall and the waiting staff most attentive - We were a little disappointed with the eating time in the Windjammer if you were not in there for around 8ish the choice dwindled away for a swift close down at 9 ? Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
Having been impressed by the itinerary of the delights the mediterranean can offer, we looked forward with great anticipation to our 5th cruise from Southampton. Being disabled I stayed in an accessible junior suite, do not think being in ... Read More
Having been impressed by the itinerary of the delights the mediterranean can offer, we looked forward with great anticipation to our 5th cruise from Southampton. Being disabled I stayed in an accessible junior suite, do not think being in this category of room would bring you any benefits, it was just a very large room, plenty of room for hoist, easy access onto large balcony, though we were not even greeted by the customary bottle of cava and water. I must first of all start by saying the staff were in the majority, extremely courteous and very very helpful. Special mention must go to the Sky Bar staff who looked after me exceptionally well. The onboard experience was spoilt by the awful food and cheap nasty wine selection offered by the glass. In the Sapphire dining room the menu was somewhat different sometimes having the option of up to 4 soups in the starter selection, in the main course the fish was exceptionally dry and tasteless, hardly any sauces with the meats, the vegetable selection was very limited but every dish was not complete without 2 cherry tomatoes! I have never been on a cruise before without a sommelier offering his advice on the wines. I was told due to a cutting back in staff this service was no longer available. We only managed to last 5 days in the Sapphirre dining room, we completed the cruise eating in the Windjammer restaurant. The food here offered greater selection, and was much more appetising. The self service was no problem. We bought the 3 meal package for the speciality restaurants, in hindsight I wish I had booked the 5 meal experience, the speciality restaurants were ,by far, superior to anything else offered on board. The itinerary was excellent with a good choice of destinations, however my only grumble would be why cut short your visit to Corsica with a 3pm departure then only travelling a few miles overnight to Sardinia. This also applied to Cadiz with another 3pm departure . For future cruises, besides checking the itinerary, I will also be checking departure times.I would not travel on this ship again due to the problems already mentioned. Very mediocre ship, good staff, excellent for children, good for wheelchair accessibility, but sadly not for me. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
This was our 6th cruise with RC and we have certainly seen a decline in the standard of food and entertainment over the years. The service at times was slow and there appeared to be less waiters in the bars than on previous cruises which ... Read More
This was our 6th cruise with RC and we have certainly seen a decline in the standard of food and entertainment over the years. The service at times was slow and there appeared to be less waiters in the bars than on previous cruises which probably accounted for this. The food was bland and I found myself adding salt to my food for the first time ever. The menu in the main dining room was uninspiring and the same each night. We ate at Giovannis table and ordered 3 steaks all medium rare. Two were raw and had to be sent back to be cooked again and the 3rd was well done. Not great considering the charge for eating there is now comparable to eating at a decent restaurant at home. The food in the Windjammer was also very disappointing. It was only just warm at times and the choice was far less than previously. The staff began taking away the food more than half an hour before the restaurant was due to close, so if you arrived by then you would have even less choice. I was not asked once by the waiting staff in the Windjammer if I wanted a drink and this again is unusual as it has never happened before. On a positive note, the room attendant was amazing. She was very friendly and attentive and always stopped to talk even though it was obvious how busy she was. My daughter and I attended the Sushi making class. This was the highlight of the cruise for me. It was worth every penny and I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys sushi and cooking. We made our own sushi and received comprehensive notes and a 25% discount voucher to use in the restaurant, which my daughter and I did. The waiting staff and chefs were fantastic and made us feel very special. I would also recommend the guacamole class. This was excellent value as it included a 3 course lunch and delicious margarita.... and of course you learned how to make guacamole. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
We chose, as a family, to go on a cruise as my wife couldn't fly due to a medical condition. We were all very excited about it as it was new to us. Generally we had a great holiday, the food was fantastic and 90% of the staff were ... Read More
We chose, as a family, to go on a cruise as my wife couldn't fly due to a medical condition. We were all very excited about it as it was new to us. Generally we had a great holiday, the food was fantastic and 90% of the staff were very friendly. The stops we had were really good although there wasn't enough time.The ships facilities were excellent and absolutely perfect for my two teenage daughters, attending the clubs and making friends. Sadly here are the downsides, !) The drinks cost was ridiculously expensive but we don't drink enough to pay 65euro a day for the package. 2) We really didn't want to witness a belly flop competition on an above average cruise. 3) Trying to get a place to sunbathe on an 'at sea' day was a real scrum down. This shouldn't be happening on an expensive cruise and could easily be organised properly. People were saving rows of loungers with towels and then probably going back to bed. 4) The shore staff weren't interested in you unless you were booking one of their trips. A proper tourist information office would be a great idea. 5) Why do some of your cruises offer free WiFi, when this trip had very expensive WiFi. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
This is our 1st cruise & don't have another one to compare to. We have always been on package holidays or been to Florida in a villa. We found the holiday very enjoyable, the food in the dining room was excellent & the ... Read More
This is our 1st cruise & don't have another one to compare to. We have always been on package holidays or been to Florida in a villa. We found the holiday very enjoyable, the food in the dining room was excellent & the waiter staff exceptional. We usually attended the 1st show after our evening meal & there was a variety of shows on offer, and we always enjoyed them. We always found the bars very busy at night, and quite often went back to our room earlier than we would have liked as there were no free seats available for us. We did have the deluxe drinks package & are not big drinkers but found it to be worth having as we could have a drink anytime we wanted. I do love a cocktail but often found them to be quite sweet in taste. Most of the staff were very friendly & polite but some of the bar staff were run off their feet at times & came across as being slightly rude. We did not book any shore excursions as we found it too expensive for us especially having to pay for the 4 of us, so just did our own thing instead. Our teenagers did enjoy their holiday, we did have to buy the wifi package to keep them amused at times. They used the gym & the flow rider & the arcade sometimes too. We may go on another cruise again, but without the 'kids' Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
Initially picked this cruise due to ports of call. The ship, cabin, dining and service provided was fabulous. Make sure you spend the first/second day on the ship exploring and getting to know the ship and where everything is. There are ... Read More
Initially picked this cruise due to ports of call. The ship, cabin, dining and service provided was fabulous. Make sure you spend the first/second day on the ship exploring and getting to know the ship and where everything is. There are so many places to eat for breakfast, lunch and dinner that offer different experiences. We loved the a la carte breakfast on deck 5 which is included in your holiday. We didn't realise this until day 3. The choice of food and quality was amazing. I am gluten free and on day 2 in the Windjammer there was a whole section of hot and cold food to cater for me, including some lovely chocolate cake and freshly baked bread. The vegetarian burger with the gf bun was amazing. I didn't realise that you could go to guest services each day and get the menu and order something gf so you knew there would be something you would like, which is a great idea. The ports were great, although I would have loved longer in Gibralter, which we thought was a very interesting and amazing port. We did our own thing while exploring each port. We had cabin 3017, which was noisy after midnight until about 2am most nights. I am a light sleeper and my husband is not. Although some nights he found it annoying - lots of heavy footed walking around, scraping of chairs and general working noise. We did phone guest services three times and they sorted it within 5 minutes but felt we did not want to keep complaining as it was working noise from the speciality eating restaurant. Avoid this cabin if noise bothers you. Overall we had the best time ever, can't fault the staff, service, food or anything and when Norovirus struck, they had it contained quickly and stopped it spreading. Only 1% of travellers affected. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
Left home near Coventry at 10:10, on the boat around 14:30, excellent service from Eavesway Travel, slight delay in Southampton getting checked in but then in the cabin by 15:00, first case was outside the door as we left the port the ... Read More
Left home near Coventry at 10:10, on the boat around 14:30, excellent service from Eavesway Travel, slight delay in Southampton getting checked in but then in the cabin by 15:00, first case was outside the door as we left the port the other three arrived over the next hour or so. The ships crew were so friendly wherever you went on the boat and whatever the role they were performing, from the maintenance team, the dining room staff to the cruise directors team and our stateroom attendant. The cabin was kept really clean and despite there being three of us in the one room the storage space was superb. Our balcony was fine at sea but a little scary when in port as we were on deck 9. The food was superb from start to finish and we really enjoyed it, perhaps too much at times. The restaurant staff were fantastic, always looking to help you, collect things for you and provide drinks when needed, empty plates were collected as you put your knife and fork down. Entertainment was really good, always something going on somewhere if you wanted it or quite areas to relax in if that's what you wanted. We were really lucky in that the weather was a scorching 27C as we left Southampton and stayed that way until we entered the English Channel on the way home when it rained most of the way back to Southampton. Some locations were at times just too hot. The stop overs were superb, the captain always gave a full review of each stop before we got there and clear information on arrival and departure times. This was only our second cruise and first one with RCI but we are already talking about the next one and unless something drastic happens it will be with RCI again. Thank you one and all for a wonderful two weeks... Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2017
We have travelled with Royal Caribbean before and yet again Royal Caribbean were brilliant. Food, Entertainment, Cleanliness, Friendliness of the Crew and Efficiency were second to none. We ate at Johnny Rockets and thought that the ... Read More
We have travelled with Royal Caribbean before and yet again Royal Caribbean were brilliant. Food, Entertainment, Cleanliness, Friendliness of the Crew and Efficiency were second to none. We ate at Johnny Rockets and thought that the prices were good as was the food and entertainment. The only thing I would say is that there wasn't enough areas for sitting when the weather wasn't good and most people were inside. This was particularly noticeable when a show finished and people went to the Café Promenade. We didn't go on any excursions as we find them expensive but all the ports we went to were really good and easy to navigate. A final point we would like to make is that the photographs are ludicrously expensive as the cost to produce them is minimal. Come on Royal Caribbean you would sell far more if you reduced the prices of Excursions, Photographs etc. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2017
I treated my wife (and myself) to a 14 day cruise for her birthday this year and chose this cruise because it sailed out of Southampton and therefore could take decent sized cases on-board as this was a no-fly holiday and you need lots of ... Read More
I treated my wife (and myself) to a 14 day cruise for her birthday this year and chose this cruise because it sailed out of Southampton and therefore could take decent sized cases on-board as this was a no-fly holiday and you need lots of clothes for the various themed nights. Got down to Southampton the day before sailing (as I have done a few times now) and the weather was really great and the city was clean and tidy as usual with plenty shops to buy those last minute summer things. Took a taxi to the docks which costs around £5-£10 which drops you off outside departures. I don't think you can walk to the terminal and for that price who would with cases. As a crown and anchor member I was able to jump the queue so was aboard the ship less than 30 minutes from getting in the taxi at the hotel. It was my first time on this ship although I have been on Freedom and Vision ones. The ship was in very good condition for its age - better than the Indy was when I was on it last October. There were also some new shows on the ship including a new ice show which was excellent. There was always something going on somewhere if you traveled around the ship and everyone seemed to be in good spirits. The staff in the various bars were kind and polite and the entertainments staff (especially Dominic in the Scooner bar) were very good at their jobs. The Cruise Director was good on stage, but sadly I did not see him at all around the ship like I have done many times with Clo O'Conner and Bill Brunkhorst. The food in the windjammer was the same as any other windjammer and it was very busy in there most of the time. I was on My Time dinning in the MDR and had the same waiters each night who were very good - although I had paid my gratuities up front so they should be! One good thing about this ship was that you could use your Diamond vouchers in the MDR (during DL hours) instead of ordering or bringing your drink with you. Not sure if this is a new RCI policy or just on this ship - I am on the Rhapsody next month so I will find out! Did my own thing at the ports of call except for Livorno were I took their trip to Florence. I was out from noon to nearly midnight and done in by the end of it. It was a brilliant trip and my wife loved it but we just wish the ship had docked earlier so we could have got back to enjoy the shows and have a drink etc. Another thing to mention is that this ship was very calm and stable during the whole cruise and I never felt a thing the whole time - even in the Bay of Biscay. During this cruise we went to Gibraltar, Livorno (for Florence/Pisa), Civitavecchia for Rome (1 hour on the train for less than £10 euro), Corsica, Barcelona, Valencia (well just outside), Malaga and Cadiz. I have been to most of these places before, and will do again as this is the perfect way to see all of these places. I had an inside cabin just below the Scooner bar which was handy as I did not have far to crawl last thing at night. Cabin was clean and tidy and the room attendant soon got used to our coming and going habits. Managed to climb the Rock wall (not bad for my age) but didn't bother with the flow rider (lasted 2 seconds on the Indy back in 2008 so never again). There was a nice big whirlpool inside the Gym which I have not seen on any of the other RCI ships I have been on. Had a game of golf each day - even in the Bay of Biscay which was a bit windy - but fun! There were only a handful of kids on this cruise and they were well behaved and everyone seemed to really enjoy themselves which is a nice thing to witness on holiday. I must say that this has been one of my favourite cruises in recent years - just a shame the Cruise Director didn't get more involved with passengers during the daytime. I believe the Navigator is doing the Med and Canneries next year so I may book it again! Hope this helps. Read Less
Navigator of the Seas Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.5 4.3
Dining 4.5 3.9
Entertainment 5.0 3.8
Public Rooms 4.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 4.1
Family 5.0 4.1
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.7
Enrichment 2.0 3.4
Service 4.5 4.3
Value For Money 4.5 3.8
Rates 4.5 4.2

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