69 Royal Caribbean Navigator of the Seas First-Time Cruisers Cruise Reviews

My best friend and I shared a balcony cabin aboard Navigator of the Seas sailing from Galveston, TX to Cozumel, Grand Cayman, and Jamaica on 5/25/14. We were on deck 6, Balcony cabin 6236. Our bags arrived about 2 hours after we sailed. ... Read More
My best friend and I shared a balcony cabin aboard Navigator of the Seas sailing from Galveston, TX to Cozumel, Grand Cayman, and Jamaica on 5/25/14. We were on deck 6, Balcony cabin 6236. Our bags arrived about 2 hours after we sailed. This was my first cruise, her fourth, and I have to tell you, either cruising isn’t for me, or it was just not that great. A few disclaimers: I am not a fan of crowds. I don’t like being treated like cattle. It takes a lot to impress me. Please keep those things in mind while reading this review. I will try to be objective. The Galveston Port: We hired a car to take us from the Hampton Inn in Houston to the port. It was Sunday of Memorial Day Weekend so there was some traffic, but not really that bad. From pickup to drop off was about 50 minutes. A porter met us at the car, took our bags and directed us inside to the terminal. We showed our passports and Set Sail Passes, went through screening, lined up for our SeaPasses and then onto the boat. Total time: approx. 30 minutes. Not bad. There were quite a few people, but the terminal seemed well organized and the flow of traffic moved quickly. On the Boat prior to sailing: We wandered around, took some pictures, sampled some of the Specialty restaurants’ offerings that were being displayed on the Promenade, took a tour of the spa, then settled down at the Sky Bar overlooking the pool to wait for our cabin to be ready. I am a smoker, so for my fellow smokers here are a few words of advice: THERE IS NO SMOKING ON THE BALCONIES. If you are caught it is a $250 fine. A second infraction will get you disembarked. There are approximately five smoking areas on the ship. The three I took most advantage of were: the Sky Bar, the Casino Bar and deck 11 (the pool deck) in the far corner under a covered area. Fortunately for me all of these areas were fairly close to my cabin. Our cabin was ready approximately one hour after boarding. We got in and to my surprise, my Bestie had the cabin decorated for my birthday! So sweet of her! We got unpacked, changed and headed out to eat. For lunch we went to the Windjammer. Wonderful selection, no long lines and we had no trouble getting a table. For our first night’s dinner, we ate at Sabor, the new Mexican Restaurant on deck 4. The food was divine, the service impeccable and the ambience wonderful. It’s a fairly small, intimate venue with Margaritas and Guacamole made tableside to your specifications. We enjoyed that immensely. Day 2 was spent poolside with beers in hand. The pool band started up around 4 pm and we enjoyed that for a while, then headed inside to get ready for our first Formal Night. There were photographers at all entrances to the Sapphire Dining Room and they took several shots of us together and separately in our formal attire. They also came to the table for group shots. We had the 830 seating, which I must say, is kind of late. The problem with this is that each course takes approximately 20-30 minutes from ordering to plates being cleared. Dinner was a long, drawn-out affair that I found quite tedious. I didn’t eat in the MDR again. I won’t bore you with a further day-by-day detailing, but let me hit some highlights for you: The café Promenade became our home away from home after hours. They serve sandwiches and pastries 24/7 and have a huge selection of teas. There was a very small selection of music available. One country band – Bubba Feathers – and a DJ. For dancing or live music, that was all you got. It was a bit disappointing as, while I do like country music, I would’ve liked to hear something different once in a while. And as for the DJ – he catered to the much younger (teeny bopper) crowd. That was just too raucous and crowded for me. I found 3 general groups of people on board – 20-somethings, 70-somethins, and couples. I was none of the above. It seemed that the people in my age group were parents there with their children. While I was with my best friend and my sister and her husband, there really weren’t many people with whom we identified with. That being said, let me tell you: not everyone is friendly on a cruise. In fact, most people seem to be trying to have a private vacation while amongst thousands of people. They were rude, snippy and selfish. They hogged the deck chairs for hours. They cut in front of the line. They pushed while in crowds. Not a lot of smiling. Not a lot of friendly chit chat. The pool was ridiculously crowded every day all day. Even the Solarium pool was packed, fortunately there weren’t kids allowed in there, that was very nice. We did take advantage of the Solarium pool and hot tubs several times, but mostly after hours so as to avoid the masses. It was wonderful to be floating in the pool after dark watching the stars. Very peaceful. There were a lot of things going on on the ship that I didn’t take advantage of: Quest, Love and Marriage, Trivia, lectures, etc. I did join in the Country Dance Party on the pool deck one night. We played a game of “Musical Men” and I had a blast. I won a keychain and danced the night away. My sister and brother-in-law attended the Quest game and they loved it! I mostly took advantage of room-service (get the steak sandwich and Caesar salad – excellent!) and the Café Promenade. The Windjammer was yummy, too. On the 4th night of the cruise, for my birthday, we ate at Giovanni’s table. Again, excellent service, scrumptious food, and dreamy ambience. I enjoyed every minute of it. And both restaurants were worth the extra fee. PORTS: Cozumel: we didn’t do an excursion (my friend wasn’t feeling well). We did go into town to do some shopping. This is probably not a good idea for two women to do alone. We were HOUNDED from the minute we got out of the taxi. It was so annoying. And not only did they practically drag us into their shops, they tried to totally rip us off! I was interested in a silver ring. They asked for $85. I just laughed and walked out. They literally chased me down the street going down on price. I finally paid $10 for the ring. Lots of jewel shops, lots of junk shops. We ate at Fat Tuesdays. The food was awful, the beer warm and it was hot as heck in there. They do have free wi-fi, though! After a little more shopping, we headed back to the ship. The heat and humidity are killers. Grand Cayman: A few of us booked an independent excursion to snorkel and swim with the stingrays. We chose Moby Dick Tours. They were so nice. They knew we had to tender at this port and that it takes a long time, so they pushed our tour time back from 11 a.m. to noon, just for us! We met at the pier, took a bus ride about 20 minutes to their dock, got on the boat, which was very nice, and headed out to the crystal clear blue waters of Grand Cayman. It was so beautiful. First we anchored near a reef that was literally teeming with colorful fish and snorkeled for about 30 minutes. Then we headed over to Stingray City. There were a lot of other boats there, but there were plenty of stingrays to go around. Our captain brought chopped squid for us to feed them and pretty soon they were all flocking to our group. They are AMAZING! Honestly, this was the highlight of my entire trip. I got to hold one and swim with it. Just incredible. After we got back to the pier, we did a little shopping, had a few beers and tendered back over to the ship. A few tendering tips: if you don’t have an excursion booked through RC, you MUST wait in line for a tender ticket. They will say to line up at a certain time – I was there one hour before and it was already crowded. The first two tenders went to RC excursion people, my tender ticket was for tender #4. From the start of tendering to my reaching the pier it was one hour 20 minutes. And I was on the fourth tender!!! Take this into account if you have excursions booked at a tender port. Jamaica: We didn’t book any excursions in Jamaica. Everything was very far away with round trip travel time of about 2 hours. We opted to just do a little shopping in the fake shopping center that RCI built at the port. Again, jewel shops, junk shops and in the middle of the square a little local crafts market. My girlfriend bought a very cute dress from a local who told us her mother made it. After we got back on the ship we noticed the tag inside that said “Made in China”. Our bad. She paid $25. I’m sure we could have gotten it cheaper back home. The prices for shopping in these countries are no lower than here in the states. You still only get what you pay for and a lot of the stuff can be found here for lower prices at a Wal-Mart or a similar store. The one thing I did find cheaper was medications in Cozumel. I bought my son some inhalers for his asthma at only $10/each. Here they are $45 As far as service on the ship: with the exception of the two specialty restaurants – Sabor and Giovanni’s Table – I was less than impressed. Don’t get me wrong, everyone was nice. They just didn’t seem to go above and beyond. I guess that’s acceptable, after all, they do work their tails off. There was one incredibly arrogant, rude bartender named Fernando in the Casino Bar. You could tell he thought he was God’s gift to this planet. I found him to be so offensive I actually complained to the bar manager. Our cabin steward was very nice and helpful, but again, nothing extraordinary. We only got towel animals twice – this may be the norm, I don’t know. One thing to note: my SeaPass card de-magnetized 7 times! I had to get it replaced every time. Sometimes it would work for my cabin door, but not for purchases. Other times it was fine for purchases, but wouldn’t open my door. It was very frustrating. And I wasn’t the only person this happened to. The Guest Services desk was crowded with people having the same problem. All in all I have to say: I’m not sorry I did it, but I probably won’t do it again. It just didn’t seem to be the amazing experience others have made it out to be. No fault of Royal Caribbean, just not my bag, you know?   Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
After years of turning down cruise options for a vacation my husband and me finally gave in and went on this one, we had a wonderful time, weather was great, and we just can't say enough about the staff. Every one of them was ... Read More
After years of turning down cruise options for a vacation my husband and me finally gave in and went on this one, we had a wonderful time, weather was great, and we just can't say enough about the staff. Every one of them was outstanding, Ports of Roatan, Belize City and Cozumel were very good; we did RCL excursions and no problems had. We arrived early at port because it was our first time; the check-in process took about 1 hr. We saw some people carrying their entire luggage. We dropped our carry on in our rooms since they were ready as soon as we boarded. We went up to the Windjammer to eat. There was a pretty big selection of food including ethnic food. We went to explore the ship and then put on our bathing suits and headed for the Jacuzzi. There are several Jacuzzis on board. The best ones are by the Solarium; if they are full the one inside the gym is good. Watching the sunsets in the Cosmopolitan Club on the 14th deck was a special great. We signed up for My Time Dining, which worked out perfectly for us. The food was great most nights, but we were really impressed with the excellent service from our wait staff. They really deserved the extra gratuity on the last night. All areas were clean and well maintained. I enjoyed the shops, attending the shows, playing mini golf, and relaxing at the pool and on our balcony. I loved my morning coffee on the balcony. Our room 9376 was at the back of the ship on deck 9 and was just right since we were first timers. We only heard noise a couple times being at the back. Navigator is large but easy to, no pun intended, but navigate, we enjoyed the Mexican restaurant, Sabor. The menu at Chops Grille was great also. The bars and cafe, which serves coffee, ice cream, pastries and pizza was open 24/7. The Promenade where the captain hosts the welcome-aboard reception is beautiful, there is so much to do on Navigator, and we were never bored. The ship has a friendly vibe. Many passengers hail from Texas &/or Oklahoma and most are warm, hospitable, so you'll be greeted with plenty of smiles and enjoyable table-mates for dinner. Country music is on the sound systems, and some of the on-board musical entertainers also specialize in country music. The bars and dance club were bustling, our favorite was the piano bar, but not too crowded, on most nights during our sailing. The ship is beautiful, and fun. Read Less
Sail Date April 2014
Sailed March 2-9; Grand Cayman, Falmouth, Cozumel itinerary. We booked this a week before sailing after RCCL had just released the newly added Panoramic Ocean View Rooms for a great price. We usually book Balconies or Jr. Suites, but were ... Read More
Sailed March 2-9; Grand Cayman, Falmouth, Cozumel itinerary. We booked this a week before sailing after RCCL had just released the newly added Panoramic Ocean View Rooms for a great price. We usually book Balconies or Jr. Suites, but were interested in checking out these newly engineered rooms at the front of the ship on Deck 12. We had cabin #1874 which was larger than expected, floor to ceiling glass wall for awesome views (somewhat cantilevered out over the water), great storage, near elevators, same deck as Spa, jogging deck, Adventure Ocean (for kids) and Sky Bar. Highly recommend one of these rooms unless you must have a balcony. One deck below us was the Solarium Pool (adults only) which had been redesigned tastefully. Did not use the Spa on this cruise, but you can get some great deals during the week if you watch the Cruise Compass for specials offered by the Spa. Had My Time Dining and because we booked late, our dining times were all over the place. However, the dining staff was wonderful, helpful, and we had great service at table 576 (Paul & Stanley). We love Chops Grille on most ships but were a little disappointed in the service on this ship and the price increase. The menu has changed and sorry to see some favorites off the menu. Windjammer was great for breakfast and lunch. If you don't care for crowds in the morning, order room service breakfast the night before (breakfast order forms are in your room, just hang outside your door before going to bed). We find room service breakfast to be on time and hot. Since we are Diamond Members, we were pleased to find the Viking Crown Lounge dedicated to the nightly Diamond and Diamond Plus event from 4:30-8:00. The concierge, Nadjia, was very gracious and accommodating. Waiters were attentive and hustling to serve everyone. Free cocktails and very nice hot/cold appetizers are a nice perk. Plus watching the sunset from the panoramic views of this lounge are awesome. We enjoy this itinerary. Falmouth is finally finished, great shopping, fun restaurants/bars and great excursions are available. Dunns River Falls is always a favorite and rafting the Martha Brae River is fun. Some people like to explore the beaches near Montego Bay or Ocho Rios. Grand Cayman is a personal favorite--love the town, dining, gorgeous water, shopping, Seven Mile Beach, water sports and snorkeling. Cozumel is also a fun port. You can get to great beaches, snorkeling, water sports, shopping at the cruise terminal and in Old Town, restaurants and bars. Had an awesome fajita lunch at Las Palmas in Old Town complete with Margaritas and Mariachis. Usually pass on the song and dance shows, but we saw a terrific comedian/magician Cheswick and a special showing for the Texas Tenors who put on a marvelous and moving performance. We had a blast and met people from all over the US. This ship has a lot to offer: 15 deck; 10 pools/whirlpools; 16 bars/lounges; Flow Rider surfing; Rock Climbing; Sports court; ice-skating rink; Royal Promenade filled with shops, a café, bars; newly added panoramic rooms; Adventure Ocean for kids/toddlers; 8 dining choices; the casino; and the outdoor big screen for movies/events poolside. Don't understand some of the negative reviews. I know some people are upset over fog issues, but that is not RCCL's fault. We were able to leave Galveston before the sea fog got too bad and we had no issue with fog on arrival at the end of the cruise. Our weather was great for a March cruise, temps 75-84 and no rain during the day. I would highly recommend the Navigator.   Read Less
Sail Date March 2014
I say second "Cruise of a Lifetime" because this is our second trip to The Mediterranean! Our first was our 25th Anniversary Cruise just two years ago. Who knew we would be returning so soon. (We did throw a coin in Trevi ... Read More
I say second "Cruise of a Lifetime" because this is our second trip to The Mediterranean! Our first was our 25th Anniversary Cruise just two years ago. Who knew we would be returning so soon. (We did throw a coin in Trevi Fountain!) This trip was with my brother and sister in law and since we had been before we were nominated as trip planner. I made all the reservations direct through various sites on the internet - Flight, hotel, cruise, tours, etc. Of course Crusie Critic was my Number One source of information. We flew to Rome via Atlanta two days early to enjoy a little more sightseeing. Good thing as Delta had computer problems and all regional jets were grounded Thursday mid-day and we missed our connection to Rome by about 15 minutes. Delta agents were helpful and the four of us were put on a later flight that stopped briefly in Paris. We got to add another city to our "bucket list of places to visit". I had arraigned a private transfer with "Rome Airport Transportation" and was not sure they received my notice about the delayed flight but once we cleared customs there they were with our name on a sign. What a welcome relief! The trip from the airport to our hotel was uneventful but we did get to see some sights on the way. We had reservations at the Hotel Colosseum. The hotel was very adequate, very clean and in a good location. (I was a little worried as other reviews painted it in a somewhat negative light as being close to a gentlemens club. There was one at the end of the block but we never saw anyone going or coming and had no problem at all.) As I mentioned the rooms were clean and well cared for. Breakfast was a selection of breads, cheeses and meats. It was adequate unless you were looking for a full American breakfast of all the eggs, potatoes, bacon, sausage and cereal you could eat! They did keep our passport to register us but they were returned to us our first trip down to the desk. The keys are on a giant brass key ring that weighs a pound but they kept the keys for you at the front desk as you went out. The elevator was small - enough room for two pieces of luggage and two people. If you don't like tight places take the stairs! We went to a small restorante pizzeria just down the street that was recommended to us - La Mela D'Oro. Our waitress wasn't much although some of the other staff seemed friendly. We really didn't like the food and would advise seeking out another place. The sound of thunder awoke us on Saturday morning but by the time we finished breakfast the storm was clearing. We broke out our umbrellas and hit the street. After a few minutes of getting oriented we made our way to Termini Station and purchased an all day Metro pass. We had reserved tickets to the Vatican Museums and so bypassed the lines and walked right in. After spending the morning touring the museums and St. Peter's we found (or it found us) a small mom and pop restaurant - Trattoria Al Cuppolone. It had good food and good service at a great price. From the Vatican we took the Metro back to Barberini Station and started our walking journey. We began at the corner of San Carlo Quattro Fontane and made our way to the Quirinale. From there a short walk to the Trevi Fountain and it hordes of people! Onward to the Pantheon, Pizza Navona and back along the Vittorio Emanuele to the Forum area and its wonderful ancient ruins. The Colosseum was the end of our walking tour with a short jaunt back to our hotel. After a short time to cleanup from all the walking and exploring we headed back out for some real Italian food at the Hard Rock Cafe! Day One - The next morning Rome Airport Transportation picked us up at the hotel and delivered us to the pier at Civitavecchia. Upon arrival at the port RCL personnel greeted us and escourted us into the registration area. It took less than 20 minutes from our arrival at the port until we were aboard the ship. Although only Gold members of C&A we were treated like royalty! We went to the Windjammer for a delicious lunch and while there the announcements that the rooms were ready was made. Arriving at our cabin (#7221) we found it ready and our cabin attendant nearby. Although the cabin was cleaned regularly we hardly ever saw the attendant. He did a fair job but nothing special. At 4:30 pm we went to the Guest Assembly Drill. It’s amazing that people don’t think they really mean everyone has to attend. After rounding up the strays we were dismissed. Sail away took place at 5:00 pm and the high seas beckoned! After cleaning up a bit we headed to the Welcome Aboard Show. It was OK but it seems that the entertainment has gone down hill a bit. The orchestra was great but most of the other entertainment just didn’t WOW us as in the past. We had Second Seating for our meals so we wouldn’t have to rush back from shore every day. It worked well for us. Out Wait Staff (Natalia and Sachim) were EXCELLENT and showed excitement every night. We had two couples from California traveling together as table mates and enjoyed great conversation each evening. Day Two we awoke to find our ship pulling into Messina, Italy. We had opted for a RCL excursion "Taormina on Your Own”. This fit us well as we were able to enjoy the town at our own pace. After getting back to the ship we made the Headliner Show - The East Coast Boys - not a bad group. We enjoyed their songs and then made our way to dinner. After dinner a stop in the Casino was mandated by the wife. After making our contribution we strolled the deck and then turned in for the night. Day Three was a Sea Day. Nothing to do but kick back and relax. I had brought along a book to enjoy on deck so after a quick stop at the Café Promenade for some hot chocolate I retired to a chair on Deck 4 to begin my relaxation! The Production Showtime was "Now and Forever” featuring Broadway numbers. We did not enjoy the show and forced ourselves to sit through it. Afterwards it was off to dinner - our first Formal Night. Day Four we found ourselves in Athens. I had arraigned a private tour through Nikos Loukas (privategreecetours.com) to see the sights of Athens. We were met at the port by our driver, Demitris. He had a vast knowledge of Greek history and shared it with us as we toured the city at our pace. The Acropolis and Mars Hill had to be the high points for me. We never felt rushed or pressured at the suggestions he made and had a wonderful time. We had lunch in the Agora area and stopped for dessert on the way back to the ship. That evening we went to the Ice Dancin’ Spectacular - and it was! This was the best entertainment of the entire cruise. It is amazing what these people can do in such a small area while the ship is moving!!! After the show, dinner, the casino and bed. Day Five we arrived at the port of Kusadasi, Turkey. Again, I had arraigned a private tour through Tayf Tours. Our guide and driver (Yesim and Hasan) were waiting for us as we exited the ship. We quickly boarded our van and were whisked off to the House of Mary. We arrived before the tour buses and so had a rather peaceful time there. We then beat the crowds to Ephesus and toured the ruins and the Terrace Houses. From there we went to a local pottery store and yes we bought some pieces. They were absolutely beautiful. Our journey then took us into the mountains to Sirince. We spent just enough time here to pick up a few items and then back to the valley for lunch. Everyone warns of the "carpet factory” tours! I was hesitant but did stop at one for lunch and a quick tour. Looking back I would have let them know up front that we had no intention of purchasing a rug. Although they were beautiful they moved outside of our price range very quick. It was an interesting stop and story and the lunch was very good. Arriving back at the port we had some time to look around and purchase a few more items! The Headliner Show was Chilli Gold, a British singer, and she was actually pretty good. We enjoyed her show as it was full of familiar songs and high energy. Dinner was casual. My wife and I actually ate alone as my brother and sister in law went to the Mystery Dinner. They had a great time and said the steak was some of the best that they had ever eaten. More casino and deck strolling before turning in for the night. Day Six we arrived in Chania, Crete. We took the three Euro bus into town and spent the day wandering about. More shopping about town and then back to the ship for another show and dinner. Day Seven was at Sea so we could unwind before arriving back in Rome. The Farewell Show was pretty good and dinner was sad as we bid farewell to our new found friends. Sunday our ship arrived back in Civitavecchia. Disembarkation was as painless as checking in. We had no more arrived at the C&A waiting area when they announced we could leave the ship. Transportation was again through Rome Airport Transportation. The were waiting when we left the ship and had us on our way to our airport hotel in no time. Because of flight schedules we chose to stay Sunday night and fly back to the US on Monday morning. Our hotel, the Courtyard Rome Airport had our rooms ready when we arrived about 9:30 am. We checked in, had lunch and a nap and then went out exploring. A walk into downtown Fiumicino led to a street fair and seeing how the locals spend their Sunday afternoons. Monday morning was a shuttle bus ride to the airport and our flight back to the US. All things considered this was a great vacation. We’re already planning our next cruise to either Northern Europe (the Baltic) or New England (to see the leaves change). Read Less
Sail Date October 2013
We are seniors and this was our very first cruise. I have to say right at the start that it turned out to be more than I expected. We had a wonderful time, and we will do it again. We were on the Navigator of the Seas, and our departure ... Read More
We are seniors and this was our very first cruise. I have to say right at the start that it turned out to be more than I expected. We had a wonderful time, and we will do it again. We were on the Navigator of the Seas, and our departure point was Chivitecchia (Rome). This port is located about 45 minutes north of Rome Airport. We chose to take a limousine from the airport to the port. I am glad that we did because it was cheaper that taking the coach and much more comfortable. The limousine took us right to the departure area located on the quay. We also upgraded to a stateroom with a balcony and we are glad that we did this. The room very spacious for a cabin and having the balcony was nice to be able to sit out in the evenings. The boarding procedure went smooth and being as we were from Canada we had to surrender our passports for the duration of the cruise. On our arrival at our cabin we were met by our cabin steward who explain everything to us and looked after us well during the trip. The cabin was spotless I noticed that the steward even dusted the walls every day. This is without any doubt the cleanest hotel room that I have been in. The entire ship is spotless. During the voyage the Captain explained that they are very conscious of any kind of bug or infection being brought onto the ship by passengers. The crew will not shake hands, and passengers were asked to use the Purell hand sanitizer machines that were located all over the ship. When you went to board the ship the machines were at the gangplank. There was an officer pointing out the machines for you to use. While the passengers were on shore the crew spent their time wiping every hand rail, they even vacuum on the top of the signs over the stores. The whole ship is kept spotless. Ports Our first port of call was Massena we took the Red bus tour of this port. I cannot say it was a very nice place the buildings were drab, and there was a lot of graffiti on the buildings. Athens was our next stop and this is a big tourist city. We chose to take the afternoon tour because there was not too much waling. Athens is a nice city and there was lots to see. Ephesus was a shopping stop we did not take the tour we just went to the market. It was interesting they sell lots of gold and silver in these markets. The last port of call was Chania and we took the tour the scenery was lovely and we had a very pleasant day. The two days we had a sea were different the first one we had thunderstorms and it was wet and overcast. The second one was clear and sunny. It does not matter what the weather is like there is so much to do you cannot get bored. Activities are well organized and you get a copy of what is going on the day before. We dined at the Windjammer. This is the buffet restaurant and I found that there was Indian food, Chinese food, Japanese food and North American or European food. There was always something different available. In general I must say it was a wonderful trip and the crew on this ship were excellent. The ship is going to Galveston in December for a re fit. I did notice some of the carpets in high traffic areas were low on pile. Not dirty just showing signs of wear. The one thing that I would do different next time is. We had to fly overnight from Canada to Italy. We arrived in Rome the morning that the ship departed. Next time I would go a day earlier and stay in a hotel for the night and overcome the jet lag before starting a cruise. My next cruise will be on Royal Caribbean I found there service prior to the cruise and after the cruise to be excellent.   Read Less
Sail Date October 2013
This was our first cruise and we loved every second of it. The ship, the food, and most of all the friendliness of the staff could not be faulted. We spent 3 days in Civitivecchia awaiting our ship and stayed in the San Giorgio hotel ... Read More
This was our first cruise and we loved every second of it. The ship, the food, and most of all the friendliness of the staff could not be faulted. We spent 3 days in Civitivecchia awaiting our ship and stayed in the San Giorgio hotel right on the sea front which was excelent for our needs. We arrived at the embarkation area around 11.00 am and shortly after some administrative paper work we were soon on board exploring the ship. We took the premium drinks package and although it was good to be able to order our drinks without worrying about costs it was a shame that my wife could not choose her wine as she had to have the house wine by the glass, luckily it was to her liking, although it did mean she could not try other types. Our two 14 year old children loved the teenagers club and after the first night of eating with us in the main diding room they decided to eat with all their new friends in the Windjammer and choose from the endless buffet choices. After that we hardly saw them unless we were all together on an excursion or late evening in our cabins - my wife and I never thought that the children would find so much confidence and independance in such a short time, the kids can't wait for the next cruise. Read Less
Sail Date August 2013
We traveled as a family of 5 (My parents, brother;28 years old, sister;24y.o., me;20y.o.) and this was our 'first cruise'. We have sailed on a Carnival ship before, but that was so many years ago that not even my brother ... Read More
We traveled as a family of 5 (My parents, brother;28 years old, sister;24y.o., me;20y.o.) and this was our 'first cruise'. We have sailed on a Carnival ship before, but that was so many years ago that not even my brother remembers it that good. We did our research on what ship we wanted to go on, and this one had the things we wanted. We wanted fun activities and just more than enough things to do. We can't be happier with the choice we made! This ship has so many things, we didn't even do all the stuff we wanted to do. Golf, rock climbing wall, ice skating rink, the pool deck. There's more than enough things to do. ***PORTS*** The boarding process went really good actually, for the amount of people who were there (at around 11:30AM) I would say in about 45 minutes we were on board. We had to wait a little for our rooms to get ready at 1PM. We stayed on the ship that day and walk around and get to know the ship. Second day we arrived in Messina,Sicily. There's not much to do around the harbor itself, so we took the excursion to Taormina. Highly recommended. You have 3 hours 'free time' which is just enough time to walk the whole town. Lots of shops and restaurants/cafes. You can take lots of cool pictures here. And make sure the walk all the way to the Greek Theatre. In the evening there was a party in The Dungeon Club called 'Traffic Lights Dance Party' where you get a sticker. Green for Single, red for Taken and orange for 'Call Me Maybe'. This is a good place to meet the young cruisers like us, so of course my brother and sister and I went there. It's open till around 3.30-4:00 usually. Third day was at sea. So we woke up a bit hung over from the night before at the club. We went and breakfast and then went to the pool. There were no chairs at all available. After walking like 4 rounds looking for chairs we just went to the bar and hang out a little till we finally saw a couple leave. We immediately went for their chairs. You have to keep an eye out for people leaving so you can get the chairs fast. There are 20 other people looking for the same chair, haha. This is a good day to plan your onboard activities. It's also a good day to get to know your 'new friends from the club' a little better and get that bond going. Fourth day we arrived in Athens, Greece. We took the excursion called Highlights of Athens, I believe. It went to the Akropolis first. There are so many tourist there, so it kinda takes a while to get up there with all the busses and lines at the entrance. It was very beautiful! We listened to the guide man for a little bit, but then went to walk around since there was only like half a hour left before we had to meet back all the way down at the busses. Then it went to the city centre where there are like palaces and some high-end designer stores. We had the opportunity to get off the bus if we wanted to stay there and shop, but everybody opted to go back to the ship. The whole bus was tired from walking/climbing the stairs at the Akropolis. Fifth day we were in Kusadasi, Turkey. We again took an excursion to House of the Virgin Mary. Very beautiful ride all the way to the top of the mountain. Was kinda disappointed with the attraction itself. You can see everything in like 5 minutes. You can also get Holy Water if you want. The tour then dropped us off at a carpet store to meet a guy called Tony. (Owner of the shop). He does a whole show for the group and tried to sell us some carpet hand-made. But you can only imagine the prices of those carpet. Out of this world. You can then walk to ship since its right in front of it. It's a area with lots of shops, so you can go shop around. Sixth day we arrived in Chania, Crete. We wanted to chill out this day and our parents still had like energy to go for a tour. So they went to the Old City and we ' the kids' went to a beach for the young crowd. It was a beach club kind of place called Costa Costa. They had good house music and a bar and some fancy chairs on the beach. We just tanned and went swimming and drink a lot of alcoholic drinks. We had a good time there! It was very crowded tho', since there were so many people from the cruise itself. All we saw was blue towels from the Royal Caribbean on the chairs. We went there with the cab for 25euros/each ride. You have to make sure the taxi comes back to get you, since there are no taxies outside waiting. Seventh day we were on sea again. We had a relaxing day. And tried to be out of the sun since we tanned already and it kinda began to hurt a little bit. Haha. THIS TIME WE WOKE UP EARLY TO GO GET SOME CHAIRS with good location on the deck. In the evening we went to club again as usual for the farewell party. Disembarking was really easy and fast. Your luggage is right there in the terminal building with a number on it. ***ENTERTAINMENT*** There is a place called Boleros, and they play latin music so there's some dancing going on there. So we kinda went there after the dinners (9-11 seating) and stayed there till like 12 or something and then we go to the Dungeon Club every night, except the first night. It's kinda the only thing open that late on the ship. The Dungeon Club is a cool place to meet the young crowd (18+). When you meet the other people on board, you kinda plan to meet up again at the pool during the day and then at the club at night. You will obviously see the same people everytime. BE SURE NOT TO MISS THE SHOW AT 'STUDIO B' called THE QUEST. It's an adult only show. An interactive game show/scavenger hunt. The audience is divided into teams, and then the teams are given quests to fulfill, like producing a certain object or getting someone from the team to do something specific. The quests get more and more outlandish and embarrassing, and I swear it was so funny! ***CROWD ON THE CRUISE*** It was a Eastern Mediterranean cruise starting in Italy, so there were so many Italians on board. There was also a large crowd of Spanish speaking countries (Spain, Colombia). Some other European countries Scotland, Norway. Not as many Americans as I thought. I'm from Aruba and speaks several languages (English, Dutch, Spanish and Papiamento). I found it very hard to communicate with the Italians since many of them don't speak English at all. I had to speak Spanish, and than they would get what I was saying (kind of). But the people on our cruise were very young I would say. Lots of people aged 20-30. This was one of the best things for my brother/sister and I. We made so many new friends from our age group on this cruise. But if you only speak English, be prepared to use sign language or something. **CREW ONBOARD** 1 word. AMAZING! **ROOMS** We had two balcony rooms and they were great! I recommend getting a balcony. The bed I must say is kinda hard. It's not your 'Heavenly Bed' at the Marriott Hotel. We also had the 'sofa bed', but it's actually just a sofa. They literally just put 2 layers of sheets on it and it becomes a 'bed'. Extremely hard but yeah. I would imagine its not good for someone older with back pain or something. ***FOOD*** We mostly ate at the Windjammers Cafe. Free and buffet style. They have very simple food there. From the hamburger with french fries to the grilled fish and some sushi. There's def something for everybody there. We didn't try out the Johnny Rockets. Overall the food was good. At the dinners there were some fantastic items on the menu, except 2 nights. Thats it I guess. We all really loved this cruise and would definitely recommend it to anyone! Beautiful ports, amazing crowd onboard, great crew, good food, LOTS OF FUN! I'm looking forward to cruise again with Royal Caribbean! Read Less
Sail Date July 2013
My wife and I sailed on the Navigator of the seas from May 5, to May 12, 2013 and this was a first cruise for both my wife and myself. I can not comment on price as my wife purchased this as a surprise for my birthday. We flew to Rome ... Read More
My wife and I sailed on the Navigator of the seas from May 5, to May 12, 2013 and this was a first cruise for both my wife and myself. I can not comment on price as my wife purchased this as a surprise for my birthday. We flew to Rome on the same day that we boarded to Ship. We have traveled in Italy before and because of that we were familiar with the trains. We purchased ticket from the Airport to the Port online. Planning and research allowed us to leave enough time so our transfer at Rome Trastevere, even though we had to go up and down stairs, not all elevators were working. the walk from the Station in Civitaveccia was not long, very flat and there is a shuttle from the entrance to the port to the embarkation area. The check-in process was amazing, very short and the person who checked us in explained everything very clearly. We arrived in the afternoon so we proceeded directly to our cabin and dropped off our carry-ons and started to explore the ship. Touring the ship at this point was suggested to us and in advance we printed out deck plans and went everywhere. This helped us later on in knowing how to get places. At 4PM there is a muster drill and it is very important. We departed on time and shortly after we received our tickets for our shore excursion. We chose My Time Dining - we suggest this as well. the menu was varied and interesting and changed every day. The food was superb. Shore Excursions - as I said we received our tickets and we went to sleep early right after we returned from dinner. Apparently even though our tickets were printed our excursion was canceled due to lack of participation. - If there was not enough participation, why were the tickets printed? guest relations did try to contact us and they left voice mail on the phone. We had retired early after our travels but even in the morning when we got to the room were the tour was supposed to depart from, there was no sign stating that our excursion was cancelled so we really didn't have a chance to book something else. Activities - were many and varied, the shows were a lot of fun and watching an ice show on a cruise ship is a special treat! The Navigator is quite a large vessel. It is big enough so anyone can find their own space, if they want to. The Solarium is a great place to be by the pool and it is quiet - we spent much of our pool side time there. The work-out area is well appointed with many machines. Summary - An Amazing experience! a really great time with really great service! The only comment we have is about the cancellation of our shore excursion. why was it cancelled not only after the tickets were printed but after the tickets were delivered. And even if attempts were made, and they were, to contact everyone, why not put up a sign saying that this/these excursions were cancelled. Posting this might have allowed us to sign up to an alternate excursion. Great Job Navigator of the Seas Staff and Crew!! Read Less
Sail Date May 2013
Decided to do a Cruise for our Honeymoon, arrived in Rome a few days after the wedding absolutely exhausted.Wish we had been more prepared for the struggle to get to the boat, we took the train which was so hectic and full of thrives and ... Read More
Decided to do a Cruise for our Honeymoon, arrived in Rome a few days after the wedding absolutely exhausted.Wish we had been more prepared for the struggle to get to the boat, we took the train which was so hectic and full of thrives and gypsies trying to rip off foreigners. Waited at the platform for like 1 hr finally for the train to come, with no notice if it was the right train. No one would help us and nothing is clearly marked and no one can speak English. Finally arrived at the Port, almost being late for the boat and took a Taxi for 20 EUROS...Embarkment was a piece of cake as it was 3:50 by this point. Got on board very quick and our luggage was brought up within 30 mins. Cabin: We had a Junior Suite which we were very happy with , very big and lots of space. Food: The main dinning room had great food, we did my time dining but the waiters were so annoying. Only ate there 3 times the whole trip. We did room service every day for breakfast was always on time and pretty good. Only complaint the portion sizes were pretty small. Wasn't very impressed with the Windjammer, first the location made us sea sick and it was always packed and not very clean. Food was okay but nothing special.Activities: didn't do any as was either not feeling well from the waves or exhausted from the excursionsSpa: Our travel agent gave us a 100.00 voucher so I had a massage, was very happy with everything :)Service: Pretty happy with all the services and help from everyone on boardShore Excursions: Did one in each port, and absolutely LOVED them. The Port of Calls is what made this trip not the actual cruise. Only compliant, to early and not enough time in location.Only MAJOR compliant: I had heard a Mediterranean cruise was a calm and relaxing time at sea. However the last night they decided to speed back and we had to lie in bed from 3pm to 5am when we docked. The water was so rough and we could barley stand :( It was also very windy the whole trip so no swimming or being out on the decks. Read Less
Sail Date May 2013
This was my Girlfriend and I first cruise as adults(I cruised when I was 6 years old, she never has). Let me start by saying the cruise was AWESOME! We were on Navigator Of The Seas. The biggest thing that made the trip enjoyable was ... Read More
This was my Girlfriend and I first cruise as adults(I cruised when I was 6 years old, she never has). Let me start by saying the cruise was AWESOME! We were on Navigator Of The Seas. The biggest thing that made the trip enjoyable was how clean everything was on the ship. no bugs, no smells, no overflowing garbage, no smudgy surfaces.....ever. nothing worse than a dirty atmosphere to ruin the mood. The food was top notch, the worst thing we ate was just "OK" and that was poor selection of meal on our part. I would rate the food 9 out of 10. We ate in the MDR all nights except one and had My time Dining. we had one of two waiters every time. The other night Wed night we ate at Chops, I give it an 10 out of 10 for taste, performance, value, and presentation. I had the Porterhouse and my GF had the Filet Mingon. All AWESOME and The Mud-pie for dessert was worth the extra 30 alone. The one downside to the cruise were kids were not controlled. They invaded the pools and we roudy and parents did nothing and cruise staff were busy doing other things to babysit(not their responsibility). Kids took up space in the elevators and would ride up and down for hours, this is fine until they take up half the elevator when people are in line to get on and they dont move or when several times you get in to see they just pushed every floor button to ride for fun and you get out because you dont want to go to every floor when your trying to get lunch. Every port was Great! Grand Cayman was the best. Cozumel was very nice, has rough beaches because of weather coming in, and Falmouth was rich in culture, and as in many reviews about that port.... STAY in the gates unless you book a tour or plan on taking a cab out of town, the locals outside will pursue you until you come to their shack, they do this by chasing up the street after you yelling and screaming. We did the ATV safari at Good Hope Estate and this was amazing, defiantly a cruise highlight. Our stateroom was basic interior and to our liking, we slept in their and that was it, we were busy vacationing and not being couch potatoes. The Solarium was our place of choice to hang and drink, mostly in the whirlpools . We spent 2 days after in New Orleans and was a very good choice on our part, great city with Awesome food, culture, and sights to see. Embarkation was a breeze and so was debarkation. We self serviced our bags off. We enjoyed the cruise immensely and we booked our next with RCCL on board already. WE recommend RCCL to anyone! Navigator was a great ship! Read Less
Sail Date March 2013
We took a cruise with my girl scouts. This was their reward for saving up all that cookie money over the years. So you had four moms and four late teen girls traveling together. We were in 3 interior cabins with the girls all in one room. ... Read More
We took a cruise with my girl scouts. This was their reward for saving up all that cookie money over the years. So you had four moms and four late teen girls traveling together. We were in 3 interior cabins with the girls all in one room. The cabin was surprisingly spacious and comfortable for two adults, but did get cramped for four girls. There really wasn't enough closet space for them, but that's to be expected in all honesty. The nightly dining was delicious and it was fun to have eight people ordering so we all got a sampling of nearly everything on the menu. We did have one vegetarian in the party and her choices were limited. The ice skating show was the best show of all of them, though the comedian was quite good. We played a lot of bingo and enjoyed the karaoke, and we all actually got up and sang. The girls were a little disappointed in the "teen" options, probably because they were just shy of 18 and felt too old for the most part, but were too young for the adult disco. We could have stayed on the ship, there was so much to do, but we had to investigate the ports of call. It is cheaper to tour on your own, but since it was just us "girls" I was more comfortable booking the excursions and it worked out very well for us because the girls could stick together with only a single chaperone, while the moms were able to get away to other, adult excursions. Cozumel, Mexico: The girls chose to swim with the dolphins and the stingrays and had a blast. They were able to spend time on the beach as well as shop and delighted in the freedom they had to barter and buy alcohol as they were over the drinking age in Mexico. We took the Salsa, Salsa, Salsa "class" which was a hoot. We were beach side, with a great view of the Caribbean, ocean breezes blowing in our little covered balcony while we learned to make margaritas, salsas, and salsa dance. Great fun. Georgetown, Grand Cayman: We took a drive it ourselves, jeep tour around Georgetown. We got to explore the area, visit a preserve and dip our toes in the pristine beach, visit the Rum Cake Factory and even go to Hell, ending up on the beach for an hour or so. It was fun to drive on the wrong side of the road (for us Americans) and our guides were great guys from Jamaica. Highly recommended. Falmouth, Jamaica: We did the river tubing and beach excursion. It claims to be more strenuous than it really is. You walk a little ways while carrying your tube, but you're fitted with a helmet and life vest (the helmet was completely unnecessary) and the floating is very serene with a few "rapids", then you take a powered raft to a beach which was beautiful, perfect sands and water and very uncrowded. It even had a stand for beer and jerk chicken, which was delicious. All in all this was a great experience. It was great to leave from New Orleans because we'd never been there, either, so we toured Bourbon Street before left. I'm considering doing it again, taking my husband this time.   Read Less
Sail Date March 2013
We had a wonderful time and my expectations were exceeded frequently. The food in the dining room was really good and some was excellent. The buffet was good, but I didn't eat there much because the dining room was so good and so ... Read More
We had a wonderful time and my expectations were exceeded frequently. The food in the dining room was really good and some was excellent. The buffet was good, but I didn't eat there much because the dining room was so good and so relaxing. Our water and asst water (Ahmet and Alelie) took exceptionally good care of us. Our cabin steward was great, she took care of our special requests and did an excellent job. In fact, the whole crew made me feel like royalty, they really took great care of us and made us feel welcome and special. This ship is very large and had everything. The shows ranged from OK to really good. The gym was very good. I went there every day and it was sometimes busy but I was always able to do whatever exercise I wanted. Got my haircut and my DW said it was the best haircut I ever had. The promenade is really nice with shops and a 24 hour coffee/tea/sandwiches/pastries and cookies area. It also had a mini Starbucks. Royal Caribbean really won us over. Our Junior Suite on the aft of the ship was spectacular and we really enjoyed it. I could go on about how wonderful our cruise was. I really can't think of much they could have done to make it any better. I few minor items they could improve on would be to have brewed iced tea instead of made from concentrate, allow tips to be adjusted on your account instead of the all or nothing method and give receipts for tips put on your account so you can present them to the people you tip. They have a large selection of good quality tea bags available everywhere, but if you get the iced tea, it is from a concentrate. The coffee was brewed. It was a little strong for me, but that is just my preference. You have to ask for cream at your table, they just put milk on the table for your coffee. I only had one major complaint-smoking. I understand that RC tries to make both smokers and non-smokers happy, but I think they don't appreciate that you can't have it both ways. If you allow smoking in places that connect to, or are open to other areas, the smoke will naturally go to all the places. Just because you designate someplace as non-smoking doesn't mean it will be smoke free unless you don't allow smoking in areas connected to or open to that area. Balconies are part of the rooms and are connected (through the rooms) to the hallways. The bars on the sides of the promenade have large openings and doorways that open onto the promenade. The casino has a staircase leading from the middle of the casino up and onto the promenade. The casino also opens into the art studio/photograph area. The casino and bars also open onto or near the elevators and stairs. Smoking is allowed on balconies, bars and the casino. The smoke from these places doesn't stay there, it goes wherever it wants to. So when the bars and casino are open, the promenade can become smokey. When people are smoking on their balconies the smoke sometimes drifts away from the ship. Other times it goes into a neighbors balcony and other times into the hallways. If people smoke on their balconies with the balcony doors open, it can go into the room and from the room into the hallways. Many times while walking down the hallways by balcony rooms, the hallways were smokey. I was disappointed that I had to put up with smoke in the hallways and promenade. I read the smoking policy before I purchased this cruise. It gave me the impression that I would not have to put up with smoke, because it is only allowed in a few areas. I didn't expect these areas to be so connected and open to many other areas. They try to minimize the intrusion of the smoke with good air circulation and lots of air fresheners, but that just makes much of the ship smell like a casino. Royal Caribbean would have won me over as a loyal customer, if it had not been for the smoke. The trip was wonderful, but the smoking "left a bad taste in my mouth" and made me search for another cruise line for my next trip. Royal Caribbean has the departure ports, the itineraries, the ships, the staterooms and so much more that I am completely sold on. I hope they change their policy soon to be like Princess or Celebrity. Read Less
Sail Date January 2013
Our cruise began December 15, 2012. It was our first cruise and I was nervous about cruising with kids (ages 11 & 6). We got through the security lines in less than an hour and were able to walk to the suite check-in with no line. ... Read More
Our cruise began December 15, 2012. It was our first cruise and I was nervous about cruising with kids (ages 11 & 6). We got through the security lines in less than an hour and were able to walk to the suite check-in with no line. Be sure to look for it if you are staying in a suite, as it took the people who were in front of us an additional hour to get on the boat. By then, we had already unpacked, and started checking out the boat. We went to the Windjammer for a late lunch and finished just in time to get to or muster zone for the drill. After the drill we went to our room and finished setting up our room and getting ready for dinner. I was beginning to the see a pattern! My son decided the theme of our trip was: Eat. Sleep. Repeat! Our stateroom attendant, Yara, came in and met the kids, asked us questions about some of our preferences, and gave us some tips and ideas. We were doing the 6 pm first seating dinner for the week, the food and service were great. It was nice to be able to look out and watch the sea as we started dinner the first night but before dinner arrived my youngest was not feeling well so I took him to the room and we both went to sleep. Thankfully that was the only time we experienced any uneasy feelings during our cruise. Our waiter prepared our food and let them bring it up to us. It wasn't necessary but very appreciated when I woke up starving. We had room service deliver breakfast every morning so that we could get ready at our own pace. On the days we were at sea we had a late breakfast and on the days we were in port it was earlier depending on what time we had to get off the boat. We were at sea for the first three days and my kids ended up spending a lot of time in the Adventure Ocean program. The youngest loved it and would cry when I would pick him up. This was especially shocking for us as we thought that he would not want to be away from us. We even ended up letting him stay for the late night events twice. For $6 per child they can stay until 2 AM. We were never able to stay up quite that late but they did get to stay until midnight. One night they had an adorable pirate parade and they painted their faces and walked through the promenade chanting. It was very cute and they all were having fun. They had events planned for them the entire cruise. On the last day at sea they hosted a talent show in the Cosmopolitan Bar for them and I swear it was the cutest thing ever. My oldest had fun the first few days, but I didn't want him to be a self signer so he decided he would spend more time hanging out with us. We didn't spend nearly as much time at the pool as I thought we would, we only ended up going swimming once. The pools were to deep for my youngest to reach the ground. The ice skating show was a hit with everyone in our family. We played bingo and even won a little money. We enjoyed the entertainment each night and the morning show was funny. We even sent a few shout outs to other family members that were on board. Next time we will probably do two beach days and one adventure day for excursions. Maybe zip line or a dolphin encounter? Some of the things I was very glad to have were: air deodorizer, highlighters for the daily compass, pens, waterproof camcorder (go pro), and good walking sandals. I used the packing list found on cruise critic and we found ourselves very well prepared. Read Less
Sail Date December 2012
We booked a trip on the Navigator of the Seas for 7 nights with a very nice destination to Eastern Mediterranean countries: Turkey, Greece and Italy-Sicily. The trip was amazing and we enjoyed every bit of it. The room we booked, was a ... Read More
We booked a trip on the Navigator of the Seas for 7 nights with a very nice destination to Eastern Mediterranean countries: Turkey, Greece and Italy-Sicily. The trip was amazing and we enjoyed every bit of it. The room we booked, was a deluxe double with balcony and it's very comfortable and has a good space, with shower room, closet, big bed, balcony, safe, vanity, TV and mini bar. If I was you and looking to book on he Navigator I would book a room with balcony, not an interior one, because you would really feel cornered, as people can see in your room if you're above the promenade area. You get a full service on the room, including free food and room nicely arranged (bed made twice a day). Every night we were coming back from dinner to find a nice surprise from our housekeeper - a towel folded animal puppet which looked very cute. The poolside is nice and comfortable and you have plenty of choice of sitting on different areas of the pool. Although in the very hot days, you should get to the pool quite early as it can get crowded and you won't find place in the sun that easily. There are plenty of hot tubs and you can always enjoy a dip in the warm comforting and bubbly water. I never waited for an empty spot in the hot tub, even in the crowded days at the pool. We like massages and spas in general and if you do as well, we totally recommend you to book some spa day in advance. You don't need to book before your cruise, there are spots all the time, but if you are specific about a certain day when you want to spa, then you should book online, in advance. If you're a couple get the couple's retreat massage plus Rasul...AMAZING! The shops on the ship have a variety of things you need from toiletries to bags and souvenirs, perfumes and make-up and other accessories you may need. The karaoke nights were very fun and we had a blast actually participating in some contests. The must do on the cruise is the Adult Quest, there is plenty of fun and you will laugh out loud! It's good to book some of the shore excursions in the first day of your cruise otherwise they get pretty full. If you don't want to book, you can always go on foot by yourself and enjoy the sights. It's also very good to have an account open on your room otherwise you'll need to walk around with cash on you all the time and there is only one ATM on board which runs outta cash quickly. Was very satisfied with the food quality and the amounts, an all you can eat breakfast, lunch, dinner at the Windjammer but an occasional fancy dinner at the Chops Grille, which was very nice. There are tons of choice of food and drink on board. Btw, the staff on the ship is impeccable and very nice, they really make you feel important. Overall this cruise line is a very nice choice and I can't wait to book my next one. We're looking at the moment at different options for the next year. Enjoy your cruise! Read Less
Sail Date October 2012
I booked my holiday through Trail Finders - Fantastic Value - 7 Night Eastern Med Cruise on Board RCI Navigator of the Seas. Inclusive Flights and hotel in Rome night before sailing. We got great value in our deal and paid less than 1900 ... Read More
I booked my holiday through Trail Finders - Fantastic Value - 7 Night Eastern Med Cruise on Board RCI Navigator of the Seas. Inclusive Flights and hotel in Rome night before sailing. We got great value in our deal and paid less than 1900 for the package. We upgraded our room to Promanade Room, Booked My Time Dining and Late Departure as additional extras with extra costings. We stayed in the Crowne Plaza St Peters Rome the Saturday night before Sailing. This hotel was outside the city, which was fine, a shuttle bus runs through out the day at different intervals to drop you into the city, this Im afraid does not run often enough for my liking. We took a taxi in as we did not want to waste our only day in Rome waiting for an hour for the bus. This cost us approx 15.00 euro( to give you an idea ). I found Rome to be pretty dirty in a lot of places, even though the historic element was beautiful, the city was very drab. The People I am afraid were not very friendly either. We hired a private transfer to the Port the next morning. We boarded Navigator Of the Seas very quickly which was pleasing. My first impression of the exteroir of the Ship was WOW HUGE...14 DECKS high. I found the Interior of the Ship extremely impressive, All areas totally spotless and clean, even the carpeted areas.Our stateroom, Promanade View: Lovely Clean Room with a fabulously comfortable bed. Lovely Clean Bathroom. Lots of Storage. Safe. Minibar. Tv with all guest information. Window facing down onto the prom, while an upgrade from an interior cabin, we did not spend too much time gawking out the window. It was handy because we could check out the queue at guest relations. My next Cruise I will book a balcony room. Our room attendent was highly attentive to us and wa practically waiting for us to exit the room so that he could clean TWICE a day!! What service. He always greeted us and was so friendly. All staff on board were so respectful and pleasant in all ways. The Dining room we were assigned to was Swan Lake - We had booked My Time Dining - which while handy as you can choose your dining time every evening, was more of a hindrance as we wanted to sit together every evening and not share tables, we had to compromise regarding time a few night, this is not a deal breaker though. We had a table at the window every night, and was beautiful. Service Staff were excellent, and food over all top notch. Only one night did we feel the standard slipped slightly and I think that was down to over filling the dining room at that particular time. We ate in Chops Restaurant (30.00 dollars per head), it was FABULOUS. We also ate in Portofino (20.00 dollars per head )it was great also, well worth splashing out for a bit of variety. We did not take part in the first formal night, although we felt the whole way through the cruise people dressed as they wished, whether formal or casual attire was the recommedation,most dressed how they pleased. The bars were fantastic on board, we drank at them all, but spent most time in the Sports Bar on the top deck 14, where we could catch the news on the tv as well as a little sport. Bela a romanian guy behind the bar was amazing and really kept us entertained every night we were there with lovely conversation. The nightclub was great also but we only went once. The shows seemed a bit drab to me, felt they all appealed to a very family orientated audience, while this is understandable, it would have been nice to have a comedian with some adult humour as well...Advertised comedian, was a juggler, while funny, it did get old after ten minutes of juggling and miming. The pool was always busy,as the weather was so good. The tours offered were brilliant, although leaning on the expensive side. We picked wisely and spent money where we only wanted to see something in particular. We chose to do the Taste of Sicily tour which we would really recomend as you get to go up to MT Etna and is very beautiful!! We mostly did hop on hop off tours everywhere else. We stopped in Sicily, Kusadasi, Crete, Athens and Back to Rome. There was a jam packed schedule of activities on the ship, parades, bingo, The casino...etc...You WILL NEVER BE BORED if you are willing to take part in something. I cannot endorse this holiday enough. There was a good mix of elderly, retirees, honeymooners, families and couples, to not feel isolated...Just Brilliant...I really admire the staff for their friendly approach and outlook to spending 7 months solid away from their families to work on board. Read Less
Sail Date October 2012
I sailed on the Navigator of the Seas for my dads 60th Birthday last August. It was my first time cruising but my parents have done many and Royal Caribbean is their favorite. First Impressions I was astounded by the sheer size of ... Read More
I sailed on the Navigator of the Seas for my dads 60th Birthday last August. It was my first time cruising but my parents have done many and Royal Caribbean is their favorite. First Impressions I was astounded by the sheer size of the ship! It was a sight to behold when I seen it from the road high up Civitavecchia. I found the boarding procedure to be quite efficient and we where in our cabin around 20 mins after getting off the coach. The ship was clean and I had a nice wander around before heading to the windjammer for some lunch. The Cabin The cabin itself was small but there was a good use of space and it did not feel cramped. Our cabin attendants where really good and had no fault with them at all. The bathroom was also of ample size and suited our needs. I was a bit disappointed that we did not have an outside cabin but to be honest I actually didnt miss it. I spent so little time in the cabin that a window would have not been needed! Plus it was nice to emerge onto the deck and be surprised by the view of that days port! Food We used the windjammer for all our meals except one dinner on the 2nd formal night. I do not recall having a bad meal there at all! Sure I had some stuff I was trying for the 1st time that I did not like but that wasnt the fault of the staff!The food selection was very wide and appropriate to what port we where in, eg in athens we had some greek food. Every meal was great and I loved the massive glass windows given a panoramic view. Having breakfast looking out over a different port everyday and having dinner by sunset in the middle of the Med every night was an experience I will not soon forget. We also had the privilege to talk frequently with one of the head chefs, he was very happy to chat to us about the ports and food and he shared quite a few tips with us. On the 2nd formal night we decided to go to the MDR. The food was excellent and it was a nice change from the windjammer as it was completely different. However I would not chose to dine there every evening as the atmosphere was very different from the windjammer, and I would miss the views! If after all the food you remained hungry there was a snack bar on the Promenade which served sandwiches,pizza,cakes and biscuits late into the evening. Entertainment The entertainment was generally quite good, I especially enjoyed the ice show. There was one act, a juggler, he wasnt quite so good at times. Felt a bit sorry for him! But even that didnt detract from the overall good entertainment. Other Activities On the 2nd day before we arrived in Messina there was a short beginners crash guide to Italian in the schooner bar. That was quite good, was great to get some basics taught to you by an Italian! I tried the rock wall, that was a great experience as from up there I could see the volcano we where about to pass which I believe was Mt Stromboli. On the pool deck there was a bbq and also a sail away party with cakes and ice sculptures, dancing, live music and even a conga line around the pool! Staff and service The staff on board where all great, no exceptions. While chatting to the assistant at guest services it came up about my dad turning 60 during the crusie, and she arranged for a bucket of ice and champagne to be sent to the cabin on that day. The cabin attendant also found out about the birthday and actually bought my dad a t-shirt whilst we where in port! It was very kind of him and greatly appreciated by us. Excursions This is the only low point for me. I refused to pay the prices for the excursions they where charging. Messina - In messina we went for a lovely walk around the town. Athens - After doing my own research I organised a tour for my party around athens using the hop on hop off bus which was 20 euros each and included 2 routes, also a visit to the acropolis museum. We had a fantastic time doing this and loved the flexibility doing it that way gave us. If I recall correctly there was a cost of 45 dollars each for a 4hr tour which I do not feel is value for money. Kusadasi- This was a fantastic little port to explore on foot, none of us in the party were inclined to go further afield than the old town markets. Chania - This again was a fantastic town to explore on foot. We caught the shuttle bus from the port to the town and i think the cost was certainly less than 2 euros each. Overall we had a fantastic time and now I have caught the cruising bug and would not consider anything other than Royal Caribbean. I have since now book a 2 week Hawaiian cruise on Rhapsody of the Seas and look forward to the same WOW factor there! Read Less
Sail Date August 2012
Because this was my first cruise, I can not compare it with other cruise lines ... I can however compare it with the many vacations I've taken over the years. Wow ... this by far has been the best vacation. The service was ... Read More
Because this was my first cruise, I can not compare it with other cruise lines ... I can however compare it with the many vacations I've taken over the years. Wow ... this by far has been the best vacation. The service was unparalleled. From the stateroom attendant to the wait staff we were catered at every opportunity. The check in process took a total of 5-7 minutes ... I kept thinking they missed something, but in fact they are incredibly organized. Booking the day tours in onboard was another 5-7 minutes to purchase and complete all four tours. Upon arrival at our stateroom we were greeted with incredible views from our balcony. The size of the room was more than adequate as we booked (D1) Superior balcony room on the 9th deck. A balcony room is a must as you will see many islands as you cruise through the Greek Isles. The food in both the main dinning room and windjammer were definitely worth writing home about. The kitchen staff did a wonderful job with selection and preparation of the many meals offered through the cruise. The day tours offered will leave you wanting more. Each guide was well versed in the history, culture and facts of each visited city. A must do for all. Read Less
Sail Date April 2012
Well first off I want to say I did have a great time. We stayed in an Superior Ocean view Balcony cabin 8346 & absolutely loved it! Actually more roomy than I thought it would be & Mr. Kerrol Green our stateroom attendant was ... Read More
Well first off I want to say I did have a great time. We stayed in an Superior Ocean view Balcony cabin 8346 & absolutely loved it! Actually more roomy than I thought it would be & Mr. Kerrol Green our stateroom attendant was AWESOME! Really went over & beyond to make us at home & have fun! Embarking was actually a breeze we arrived at the port at about 10:45 & were probably boarding by 11:00 no problems at all and disembarked just as quickly although I think they could come up with a better program for the luggage when leaving but not too bad. I was however a little queasy as soon as the ship started moving & yes i started bonine the day before but unfortunately I felt everything the whole time sick the first night but ok by the next afternoon. Pools were ok very crowded during sea days as expected but then someone got sick in one which closed it down for the day which made it impossible to get near it and the chair hogs were out in full force. Food-- Awesome everywhere! Loved the Windjammer & our dining room experience was awesome as well thanks to Lili Beth & Douglas they were Superb! Ports--Grand Cayman (AWESOME) Snorkeled there which was beautiful! Second stop was Falmouth, Jamaica beautiful port but they cancelled our excursion which was a real bummer so after walking the port area & a little of the town (scary) we were back to the ship & Third stop Labadee...BIG BIG Disappointment there! You couldn't access the beach due to the rocks unless you were willing to walk about 2 miles and/or have the private beach excursion. Personally will never go back there. We ended up back at the pool about the whole day there. Also wanted to mention I really like the casino. It was a lot of fun! The ship itself it really gorgeous and I personally didn't notice anything wrong with her. Everyone on that ship was so pleasant & kind & how they remember your name & what you order that quickly still amazes me. Overall I would definitely recommend this ship to anyone I would just maybe pick different ports. This was our first cruise so I don't have anything to compare it to. That hopefully will change in the future. Read Less
Sail Date April 2012
This was my first cruise. My husband and I spoke about taking one for a while. We actually booked the cruise a bare week before the date of departure to celebrate his 30th birthday. We booked a balcony room. Our overall experience was ... Read More
This was my first cruise. My husband and I spoke about taking one for a while. We actually booked the cruise a bare week before the date of departure to celebrate his 30th birthday. We booked a balcony room. Our overall experience was better than I expected. On Cruise Line Critic I got the impression that the food and customer service were sub par. Our first meal on the cruise did not leave me very hopeful. The lunch served in the Windjammer Cafe shortly before departure reminded me of school lunch. There were cold limp french fries and stale hot dog buns. I was much more impressed with the sit-down dining room. The food in the dining room was mid-level French style food. I did not realize that they completely change the menu every night. To do 10 different entrees and appetizers every night without a noticeable lack if quality was very impressive. Out waiter, Johannson, was a pleasure to have. We did have trouble with customer service. On our second day our tickets for our pre-booked excursions never showed up. We went to the front desk to inquire about it and they said they had no record of our excursions. Our credit card had been charged for them. They told us to rebook our excursions and if they ever found the reservations they would reimburse us for the ones we rebooked on board. There was no talk of reimbursement for excursions we missed because we could not rebook them. There was no apology. They also miraculously found our reservations late on the last night of the cruise when it was too late to do anything about it. I wish that they had had a pool large enough to swim laps in. Most of the hot tubs were very crowded. We did find a hot tub that was nearly deserted and we were happy to use that. I was annoyed that any time we wanted ice in the room, we had to bother someone to get it. Any time we tried to get ice over the phone we never got it. We only got it when we asked for it along with other room service orders. The last few days they started keeping ice in our room so that we wouldn't have to bother anyone. We didn't really partake in any of the on board entertainment, so I don't have an opinion about that. I wanted to take the cruise so that I could lay around on deck reading a book drinking a cocktail. The cruise was very good for that, especially on the last excursion day we had because we stayed on board and the boat was pretty deserted. I was disappointed that they did not have an alcohol package for drinks that were not wine. Our last port of call was very disappointing. It was Labadee, Haiti. We did not realize when we booked the trip that Labadee was a private peninsula owned by Royal Caribbean. It reminded us of Disney Land. Nothing there was "real". It was like an amusement park. Another couple on the cruise with us said that they walked to the far end of the peninsula and that there was a ten-foot high fence covered with barbed wire to keep the starving children on the other side of the fence. It was very sad. I enjoyed cruising enough to go again, but my husband and I don't want to use Royal Caribbean again. Next time we are supposed to have something, we are bringing documentation with us. Read Less
Sail Date February 2012
This was our first cruise so we really didn't know what to expect. Prior to cruising I had done lots of research on price and the different cruise lines. Cruise Critic was an invaluable source of information as I prepared for our ... Read More
This was our first cruise so we really didn't know what to expect. Prior to cruising I had done lots of research on price and the different cruise lines. Cruise Critic was an invaluable source of information as I prepared for our first cruise. I was able to book an eight night cruise out of Fort Lauderdale on Royal Caribbean Navigator of the Seas for just under $400 per person. I ended up booked a guarantee inside cabin, but was upgraded to an ocean view cabin on the second deck. When we found out about our cabin location we were thrilled to get a window, but We were a bit concerned about the possible noise since our room was close to the engines and just below the main dining room. We never heard any sound from the dining room above us and the engine sound was limited to a slight constant rumble (like the sound you hear riding in an airplane). We noticed the engine sound when we stepped into the room but since it was constant we quickly were able to totally block it out. We did notice some loud banging noises in the mornings. Some of these were when the ship docked since we were close to the water line we could hear the ship being tied to the dock. We also noticed another bang sound in the morning that we think was due to water being turned on and off in the showers in the cabins near us. I say this because my wife said she heard it loudly when I turned on our shower one morning. Overall however, these bangs were nothing to really bother us. At most they lasted for less than an hour first thing in the morning and were only a few times during that time period. Since it was our first cruise I really don't have anything to compare our cabin with. I will say it was small. But I was expecting that. the bed was supposed to be a queen bed, but it seemed larger than that to us. In addition to our bed our cabin had one easy chair and one desk chair at the built in desk. The bath was tiny but big enough to do what you needed to do in there. The TV was old and small (they really need to upgrade to flat panel monitors). Overall out cabin was fine. The ship was amazing. First off it's HUGE!!!!!! we often caught ourselves having to remember we were on a ship. We loved the Promanade which is a three deck tall shopping area that runs the length of the ship. We aren't much of shoppers but it was lots of fun to stroll along and just enjoy the people watching. Plus several times during the cruise they had parades or other party type events that ran along the pramanade. There were plenty of activities and things to do while at sea. We enjoyed the Solarium which is an adult only area with a pool, hot tubs and deck chairs. By adult only I mean that it was a place designated for adults to enjoy without having to deal with kids everywhere. The mini golf was fun too. We didn't try rock wall climbing but enjoyed watching those who did. There were a variety of lounges and other places to relax and enjoy a drink. I personally enjoyed the cigar bar very much. This space was smallish and very quiet. It was decorated with leather chairs and distinguished art. I loved it! The attendant did a great job of serving us when we wanted but left us along to enjoy our stoggies as we wished. I didn't buy any cigars on board, preferring to purchase some at the posts we were visiting. But I did notice that the prices posted on the cigar menu were very reasonable. The entertainment on board was fantastic. We loved the production shows and thought the concerts and special guest performers did a great job. I was wowed beyond belief by the ice show. That ice show was as impressive as any ice show I have ever seen anywhere. The ice rink was tiny which did limit a few things, but on the other hand I was able to have a seat one row off the ice with a perfect view of everything. As for the food as we were preparing for our cruise I had read several reviews about the food on Royal Caribbean stating that it was industrial at best. So honestly going in I was a little concerned by this. What we found was that it all depended on where you ate. We found that the Windjammer Buffet was noisy, crowded and served very institutional food. We didn't particularly enjoy the Windjammer so we avoided it. But we had fantastic experiences in the main dining room. We found that breakfast and lunch in the main dining room was enjoyable with great service a pleasant atmosphere. And dinners in the main dining room were wonderful. The food was consistently good and if you didn't like what you had ordered simply ask for something else. And the service for dinner in the main dining room was the best service I have ever had anywhere in my life! We felt totally pampered by our wait staff who knew our names and remembered our drink preferences after the first meal. Additionally we really enjoyed the little bistro that is on the Pramanade. They were open 24 hours a day and served pizza, sandwiches and some of the best rum raisin cake I have ever had. Several nights we had dinner in the main dining room then would go down to the bistro on the pramanade to grab a cup of coffee and some desert to go and enjoy them from a deck chair as we watched the sea go by. When I booked the cruise I booked at the last minute so I didn't have a choice of which dining we were to have. We were assigned late dining which means dinner was at 8:30pm. We were concerned about this at first since we normally eat at about 6. But we found that late dining was great. The advantage was that because we dined late we were not hurried when we got back from a shore excursion to get ready for dinner. We also found that on at sea days since early dining is the most popular we would have the pools and the deck chairs almost to ourselves after the early diners went to get ready for dinner. As for the ports of call. We thought St. Maartin was okay, as I mentioned we aren't shoppers but we did enjoy the beach. St. Kitts was fantastic (I booked a tour of the island from a vendor that I read about on Trip Adviser. I saved a lot of money over choosing the cruise line tour and I found that the service was better). San Juan was lots of fun, we simply enjoyed walking around the old city. The only thing about San Juan that was a bummer is that Royal Caribbean had some sort of stink with the stink so now Royal Caribbean ships dock there really early in the day (7am) and leave mid afternoon (2pm). As a result when you get off the ship most things aren't open yet and you only have time to really enjoy one thing before its time to get back on board. Before our cruise I really didn't know what to think when I saw that we had a stop in Labadee Haiti, they call it an island but its really an peninsula on the main land. I imagined abject poverty and total destruction. What we found was that Labadee was a very well thought out resort area. It was a great place to enjoy the beach for free. You could pay for an over priced zip line ride or an equally expensive coaster type ride. But really the best thing to do was just to swim and enjoy the beach. There was also a Haitian Market area that had some highly screened locals selling stuff. As I have said we aren't shoppers so that didn't appeal to me and from what I saw the vendors were very pushy. Royal Caribbean provides a buffet BBQ on shore at Labadee which was really good. The price of this buffet is included in your ticket. The only thing disturbing about our visit to Labadee was that occasionally if you walked close to the fence you would see people begging for food on the other side of the fence (I know that's a reality of Haiti but it was hard to see). We had a great time on our cruise. We thought the staff did a great job of taking care of us and we found the ship to be everything we had hoped it would be. One thing I found out as I talked to people on board is that as a Cruise Critic member we could have signed up for the "Cruise Critic Crawl" where cruise critic members get a chance to see the different cabins on board and to tour the ship. Next cruise I will make sure to sign up for this. I had no idea about it until the day after it had happened. Read Less
Sail Date February 2012
This was our first cruise. When we had to pick the cruise we found out that Royal Caribbean had the best price/quality. So we expected a great holliday, The Cruise turned out to be even greater than we expected. A very important reason for ... Read More
This was our first cruise. When we had to pick the cruise we found out that Royal Caribbean had the best price/quality. So we expected a great holliday, The Cruise turned out to be even greater than we expected. A very important reason for our enthousiasm was the ship and the crew. Our waiter and assistant waiter were very kind people and the ship was beautifull. You can do exactly what you like and because the ship is so big it is even possible to miss all the things you don't like. The entertainment was fantastic, allthough the singers of RCCL were not that great, the shows en productions were superb. Service was outstanding and so were the excursions. Overall: a wonderfull experience. Food was excellent. The windjammer and the Jade offered many choices and the quality was excellent. The food in the main diningroom was also very good. And sometimes, after 5 years, we still miss our waiter and assistant waiter Pharell and Adina. Civitavecchia is not the ideal port since it's pretty far from Rome and the airport and a little chaotic. After this first cruise we had two other cruises. Also with Royal Caribbean. All cruises were great, but the Navigator is still our favourite 1 ship. Read Less
Sail Date October 2011
I am a 2nd time cruiser and my friend a first time cruiser. This is the 2nd time I have sailed with Royal Caribbean and will sail with them again. The ship was very big and plenty to do. I booked the whole fly and cruise deal with ... Read More
I am a 2nd time cruiser and my friend a first time cruiser. This is the 2nd time I have sailed with Royal Caribbean and will sail with them again. The ship was very big and plenty to do. I booked the whole fly and cruise deal with Royal Caribbean, this was easy, their website is extremely user friendly. The whole cruise including return flight from Heathrow to Rome was 625.00 for the week. This was great value for money and worth every penny. From the minute we checked in on our chartered flight at Heathrow, it was painless. BMI flight Rome, all on time, you collected your luggage, and handed over to the waiting Royal Caribbean staff, they then took care of our luggage and delivered this to the ship for you. We were then shown to our waiting coaches to take us to the ship, the transfer time to the port was 70 minutes. The guide on the tour gave us some local info on Rome and the surrounding areas. Embarkation onto the ship took no more than 10 mins, very professional, organised and a well oiled process. Onto the ship we went, and we were not disappointed, our Stateroom was nice, good size, very clean, the shower was amazing the water pressure was the best ever, our Stateroom attendant was Vic and he was very nice, and kept our room spotless, the work very hard and take pride in their jobs The ship had too many activities to mention, definitely a highlight was learning to make towel animals- life long skill now learnt. Outside area were great, although ship was almost full to capacity, no shortage of sunbeds etc. The food on board was plentiful, good quality and service was brilliant we ate twice in the formal dining areas on the formal nights (optional you do not have too)The service was great, and the quality was also great. We were on anytime dining and first time, we sat with four other people and had great conversation. We did not eat in the speciality restaurants as the food in the other areas was of such a good standard and variety. Entertainment, the shows were a dancing show, with professional ballroom dancers which was amazing, Abbamax tribute show- excellent, Emperors of Soul- brilliant, Ice Dance show, which was the amazing and the final show was called Now and Forever (mix of different Broadway shows) The shows were all very professional, and a very high standard. There was also a Love and Marriage show that was very very funny. Karaoke competition was also great fun. Final Parade down the Royal Promenade was a Circus show, this was the first time the crew had performed this. Costumes were great, a giant Nelly the Elephant and various other animals were amazing. What impressed me the most that all staff you were in contact with even passing in a corridor, spoke to you said Hi, were very pleasant and helpful. This was further highlighted that the cruise director Warren (in charge of entertainment) personally saying goodbye to you as we left the ship. Considering he must have only had around 5hrs sleep after the final Circus parade this was a very personal touch and a great way to end our cruise Read Less
Sail Date October 2011
We went on Royal Caribbean's 7 night Eastern Mediterranean cruise leaving out of Civitavecchia and stopping in Sicily, Athens, Turkey and Crete. I was impressed with the efficiency of the check in process which went very fast. ... Read More
We went on Royal Caribbean's 7 night Eastern Mediterranean cruise leaving out of Civitavecchia and stopping in Sicily, Athens, Turkey and Crete. I was impressed with the efficiency of the check in process which went very fast. I believe we were in our room in about 30 minutes after arrival. I wasn't crazy about having to hand in my passport (only applicable for non-EU passport holders) but the passports were returned quite promptly on the last night of the cruise without any problem. We had an interior stateroom on deck 7. Our room was fine. Nothing spectacular, but it was clean and the bed was comfortable enough which was good. The bathroom is small, but functional. No clocks in the room, so bring a travel clock if you feel you need one. We ate at the Windjammer each morning for breakfast and the dining room each night for dinner. We didn't pay to upgrade to any of the other restaurants. I found the Windjammer to be ok. Its not top of the line gourmet, but hey its a buffet, so you have to take that into consideration. I thought it was fine as there were plenty of choices of different foods. Coffee, hot tea, iced tea, lemondade, water and a fruit flavored water are free. The coffee was not so great, although they do serve Seattle's Best, which is usually good. But, wonderful coffee awaits you at each port, thankfully. The dining room was also fine for dinner. We had an 8:30 dinner time and always had a nice time at dinner. Luckily we liked our table mates that we were assigned, so it was a pleasant experience. The food was ok, nothing reminiscient of the restaurants we have in NYC, but it was fine and sometimes very good. Our waitstaff was very good. No complaints there. I usually had a glass of wine which began at around $8. A gratuity is automatically applied to each drink purchase and charged to your Sea Pass account. We thought the price was reasonable in relation to our typical NYC prices. As far as the ports: The first stop, Messina, Sicily, was nice. We did not book a shore excursion but rather elected to just walk around the town which was very easily done from the port. We also took a short bus tour which picked up in the center near the old church which has a clocktower show at noon where various statues on the church move and appear to dance around. My husband thought it was corny but I thought it was cute. After the show we took the bus tour for 15 euros which was quite short and just ok. The skies opened up and started to pour once we were on the open air bus, so maybe that put a damper on our experience. There is a shopping district that is walkable from the boat, just ask directions when getting off the boat if you want to do some shopping. And a word to the wise: don't be late getting back to the ship, if the sign says to be back at 5, then be back before 5, because that boat is pulling away at 5:01. No joke! Next, Athens, Greece. Most of Athens looked like buildings built in the 1960's or 70's that looked blah and without character and full of unsightly graffitti, but the Acropolis was incredible. We booked a shore excursion through the boat because it was just our luck that there was a transportation strike on our day of arrival thus any other type of transportation was not reliable and you would run the risk of missing the boat if you got caught up in traffic jams due to the strike. I heard that the boat won't leave you behind if their tour bus is late, so we opted for that route. I feel like we overpaid for our tour, but it provided a comfort level that we weren't going to get left behind if the strike caused problems. I wish Royal Caribbean was a little more reasonable when pricing their shore excursions, but they got us back to the boat without problem, so I can't really complain too much. We toured the Acropolis and would recommend doing that if you can walk up many stairs and over some rough terrain without much trouble. Its really great to be able to walk right up to the Acropolis sight and see it so closely. Next, Kusadasi, Turkey. We loved Turkey. We had so much fun shopping at all the shops right off the cruise terminal that we spent all day doing just that. If you are in the market for rug or a leather jacket, then this is the stop for you. I also saw some very good looking fake Louis Vuitton bags, with real leather handels,etc, but couldn't bring myself to buy a fake. All I did here was shop, so I can't offer any other details on any sightseeing here. Next, Crete. Crete was a cute, fun stop. You will need to take a public bus which comes directly to the cruise terminal and will take you into town. I think the cost is 3 euro each way. The walk to town would be too far, especially since this is a short stop withh the boat only staying until 2:30. The town has plenty of shops and places to stop and eat or get a coffee. As far as days at sea, we went to a couple of shows. The ice show was pretty good, they have some great skaters on board. The variety show got boring after awhile because the one I saw was just dancing, not really a "variety" but the dancers were good dancers, I have to give them that credit. We played bingo once, but only once as it was expensive to play. I think I paid $22 per card. All in all, I'd say this was a good cruise. The rooms are not brand new, but they are most importantly clean. Staff is very good and always helpful which makes for nice experience. I wasn't completely wowed over this cruise, but was quite satisfied with it. This is also my first cruise, so I think I had really high expectations and don't have anything to compare it to either. Read Less
Sail Date September 2011
Background: This was our first cruise. We are a family of 5. We were joined by my sister, another first-time cruising family of 5, and my parents who have been on a number of prior cruises on various lines. The children's ages ranges ... Read More
Background: This was our first cruise. We are a family of 5. We were joined by my sister, another first-time cruising family of 5, and my parents who have been on a number of prior cruises on various lines. The children's ages ranges from 3 to 12 and my mother was in a wheelchair. Embarkation: Awful queues after bag drop where the health forms are completed in an unventilated tent with no air conditioning, which was a horrible experience. Also full of Italians who don't know how to queue! But after that the security and check-in process was very quick and efficient. Stateroom: We were in one of the Family rooms which was excellent - very large, separate sleeping area for the two bunk beds and a curtain to separate off the double bed from the sofa bed. I'd thoroughly recommend this room to any family of 5 or 6. Dining: Breakfast/lunch: The buffet in the Windjammer was a nightmare on most days. It seats about 700 for a ship of 3,600 passengers. Impossible to get a table (not helped by couples sitting on the large circular tables) and people were eating standing at the edge of the buffets. After the first day we either ate at times to avoid the queues (depending on when the excursions left) or ate in the restaurant on the days at sea, which isn't the same as even though anything can be ordered it somehow doesn't tick the boxes like a buffet does. Having said that the quality and choice of food was fantastic. Dinner: We ate fixed dining on the first sitting. Food was of an exceptionally high quality on 6 of the 7 nights. Our two waiters couldn't have done more - friendly attentive service, lots of little extras for the children and ensured that we were well catered for as most of our party were vegetarian. Activities: Plenty to do, especially for the children, with the swimming pools, rock climbing wall, ice skating rink, roller blading, mini golf etc. The mini golf was terribly disappointing - a few obstacles in the holes would have made it far more interesting. My only complaint was that the ice rink was only open twice for general skating the whole week - what's the point of having an ice rink and hardly ever being able to use it? My other complaint was concerning the arcade, which was fine in itself. However one machine took $1.25 from our card but then didn't work. I asked three times for the money to be refunded to our card, and was promised on each occasion that the refund would appear, but it never did. Although $1.25 is not a lot of money it was annoying to be promised something only to be let down. Children's Club: Disappointing. The range of activities was generally poor and the staff didn't seem so interested in the children. The activities in the 2 to 5 year old's club were mainly sticking, colouring and watching TV - something that can easily be done in the stateroom. Our three year old refused to go back again. After hearing from seasoned cruisers how amazing the children's clubs activities are we were disappointed. Service: on the whole fantastic. The waiters really excelled themselves and it was really only the table cleaners in the Windjammer that weren't so friendly. However we did have one cause to complain. At every opportunity you feel RCI are trying to sell you something or make money out of you. That's fine in itself. But when we left the ship in Athens (with someone in a wheelchair) we asked the people taking photos where to go and they said they'd only help us if we agreed to have our photo taken (which we didn't want). They then sent us to a building 100m away which was locked - it turned out we were supposed to wait for a bus. Back on the ship we complained to deaf ears - not even a hint of an apology. Entertainment: Mixed. Three great shows (Beatles review, ice skating and a street artist),one awful show (West End musicals review) and two uninteresting shows (Italian singer and ballroom dancing). No show on the first evening if eating at the first sitting which was also hugely disappointing. The cruise director (in charge of entertainment), a certain Warren Allen, was rude and awful. The evening ice show turned out to be the same as one the previous afternoon but this was never explained on the cruise compass (daily activity planner). That wasn't great as we had to sit there with the kids for over half an hour just to secure seats. When I asked the cruise director why it was the same show he reasonably explained that the ice rink only seats 700 so they need to repeat the show 4 times so everyone can see it. Fair enough. But when I asked why this wasn't explained on the cruise compass he told me it was. I still have the cruise compass and it wasn't. When I told him it wasn't he accused me of lying. All I was hoping for was an apology! Not the standard of serviceI expected. Excursions: Too expensive - we arranged our own. Disembarkation: Very efficient. We managed to leave 15 minutes before our allotted time. Luggage was easy to locate. Read Less
Sail Date August 2011
It was OK, my mom and I are both easy people and didn't encounter any bad experiences on board. However I don't think we will sail again anytime soon. When reading other reviews keep in mind you should do lots of research ... Read More
It was OK, my mom and I are both easy people and didn't encounter any bad experiences on board. However I don't think we will sail again anytime soon. When reading other reviews keep in mind you should do lots of research yourself. I noticed many are negative by surprises they could have avoided if only they did their research. Embarkation: Maybe I didn't do enough research in this area specifically, but I wished there was a sign with "Wait until your shuttle bus arrives here". Instead lots of ppl were like chicken without heads (as we were), and there was no one in the tourist information desk. As the result we, like lots of ppl, walked all the way to the wrong port under the Italian sun. Great when you just got off a sauna-train with the heat generated by human sweat. I made my luggage tags at home so this exchange went very smoothly. The porter didn't seem to expect any tips for the 2 seconds work. The check-in was OK too, though they should have used microphones when calling your number. The announcer was barely hear-able, not surprising in the cacophony of ppl. We waited there for 30min maximum. Inside we went straight to our room, and only a few minutes our luggage arrived, talk about good timing! Public rooms: They were maintained and never too crowded despite the 3000+ passengers (unless there was some special occasion). I don't think you can expect more than that, unless you're an unreasonable person like me. Cabin: It was small, but hey what do you expect of an interior cabin? Everything was placed very functionally and there were lots of drawers to get rid of our garbage in our luggage cases. If there is a next time I would go for a window, nothing beats some light in the morning when you wake up from a nightmare. Our cabin was located under the pool and while there was an oozing noise we're not sure whether it's because of the pool or something else. It didn't bother us much though, taking in account that my mom can fall asleep through the shows and me being able to sleep through her snores. There's no clock but you can set the alarm via the phone. Summarised: we got what we purchased and it was nice. Fitness and Recreation: The fitness had almost everything we needed, loved the water and towels on the side, and the cleaning tissues to wipe out the bodily fluids came in very handy too, we don't have that in our fitness centers! I only missed a skipping rope amidst the modern equipments. The sports desk was nice too, maybe they could have added more ping-pong tables, maybe ppl wouldn't have to wait that long. Enrichment: They tried their best I can give them that. But two concerns: the timing never seemed right, we would be ashore most of their lectures. Secondly they didn't seem very interesting. Rates: For drinks, they were standard prices, I didn't think they were overly expensive. Especially the ice-water, lemonade, coffee and tea were greatly priced. About Spa, we'd rather go to the real Spa, it's only a few hours further away from where we live, they're less expensive ashore. Why going all the way to a ship for a Spa-treatment is a mystery to me. The shore-excursions are overprices compared to private excursions, but it's a choice you make yourself whether you want to through the hassle of the alternatives. And let's not talk about the photos, I read they were expensive but $19.95 for a picture?! No thanks! RCL really are concerned about the environment(you know, with their suggestion of reusing our towels). I think the trees are thankful that they print out ALL the pictures taken. Of course they will keep the unsold pictures as a souvenir to their 3000+ passengers. I had a great time looking through the pics on deck 3 though, especially the ones taken with captain Eric. The poor man, it must have been hard retaining the same face for hours. But perhaps I am mistaken and it wasn't the flesh captain Eric but the carton one. RCL also organises Greek and Turkish Bazaars. They forgot to mention that the products were made in Israel and China respectively. Of course they're a bit more expensive than those found ashore. Food: Now I'm one of the easiest yet most difficult to please eater. I eat everything (unless it aches the stomach), but it takes more to amaze me. The food on board was good, especially when you consider the quantity, but I rarely wanted seconds of the same dish. Food tastes great when they're hot, but when serving 3000+ passengers it's a hard feat to accomplish. My suggestion is installing a microwave for those who wish to use it. The food in the dining room was never hot as well, and it never surpassed the Windjammer. We decided to stay with the buffet after three nights in de MDR, takes less time and there's more choice. I also think the food was too American-oriented. Deserts flavours changed all the time, it it wasn't mango flavoured then it was shoe flavoured (just kidding!) but it never surpassed the ones in the supermarkets. The most horrible things in the Windjammer were the soft-ice and the cookies: they miss-named the ice-cream, it should have been called hard-ice! Cookies are all mushy, maybe they sopped it in the coffee for us but forgot to add the coffee favour. What I liked most were the bread with Mediterranean vegetables and the bruschetta (if there was mozzarella available). Both aren't meant to be eaten very warm so they were delicious. Also had my first American-style greasy hamburger of Johnny Rockets, the grease leaking through the packing paper looked so appetising, and the meat pats were thicker than I imagined! Big 5/5! Summarised: food, be it from the Windjammer of MDR, can be compared to chains like Lunch garden, but with more choice. Drinks: Cocktails weren't expensive at all, but I would have paid more with pleasure if they had more soul. Most were juice-mixes with ice and a shot of strong alcohol. I'll stick with the cocktails of a real cocktail bar. Entertainment: They did try their best here as well, but it didn't really spark my interest. I've seen better performances on YouTube, unless the professional guest performers were on the podium. The most horrible show was the musical though they sang and danced well. There was just no story in it. I suggest some theater, but it would probably be too apparent if someone snored. In the evenings there were only money-earning bars and a casino but that's OK, we had to get up early for the excursions anyway. Service: They were friendly and eager to please, which is the least what I expect from someone in the service industry. Most smiles were too forceful which lead me to think whether they're after the gratuities. A person behind a genuine-looking smile is probably also after some tips, but at least I wouldn't be so suspicious. Ah but don't take my words to heart, I'm just very very twisted. The state-room attendant and our waiters did a wonderful job. Shore excursions: Like mentioned before, they are overpriced. We took the Taormina on our own and Ancient Athens. We did get what was advertised so no biggies here. About the call of ports, though you can find souvenirs anywhere, you can re-find most of these products back in Chania(near Souda the last port of call) for a cheaper price. Value for money: We went on this cruise by special promotion so it was definitely worth our money, considering we had a nice place to sleep and never had to go hungry (There is 1 kg more of me now). I can recommend this cruise line for anyone who wants to have fun with friends, lover and family, or for those who wants to escape the stress of daily life. I can tell you this because I haven't been spying on ppl under my sun glasses for nothing! The reason why we won't be cruising anymore is that our personalities don't suit cruising. My mom can't understand English and isn't interested in history. I personally hate lazing around sun-sea-beach vacations. The places the ports do are overly commercialised and there's not much time to visit the more ethnic places. The 'grand' and 'exaggerating' display in shows, art displays ("Though worth $9 999, we will give you an amazing price of only $4 750!" ...sure they don't want to earn money)etc also ticked me off a bit, but it's also a fun thing to mock with later on. I don't regret going on this cruise because it's an additional experience. I loved walking on the lower decks(read empty) and feel the sea wind in my face. I liked reading a book while taking a sip of a bad cocktail and finding strange white objects floating on the sea. The sights of the rising and dawning sun in the sea were breathtakingly beautiful and definitely worth the '5.20am getting up and returning to bed half an hour later'-trip. I don't know what other first-time cruisers look for in a cruise, but to me those moments were the most memorable ones that you can only experience on a cruise. Read Less
Sail Date July 2011
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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