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5,013 Royal Caribbean Port Canaveral (Orlando) Cruise Reviews

My last cruise in May on Mariner got five stars. I am Diamond + so I have done many cruises. My recent September cruise on Harmony to Rotaan etc., was definitely one of the more disappointing experiences. The Good: Overall ship condition: ... Read More
My last cruise in May on Mariner got five stars. I am Diamond + so I have done many cruises. My recent September cruise on Harmony to Rotaan etc., was definitely one of the more disappointing experiences. The Good: Overall ship condition: Excellent. Food: Good. Service: Excellent from stateroom attendant to waiters in the dining room. VROOM worked well. If you are in your twenties … or had several drinks, the shows probably suited you just fine. Grease was ok, but the Columbus show had bad singing and poor ‘acting’. The Fine Line aqua show was a mismash of swim and acrobatics with no unifying theme – and much more emphasis on tumbling than acqua activities. The parade was poor - nowhere as good as previous years. The cruise director was surprisingly boring and virtually missing in person. He was on TV helping to sell the usual cruise stuff! So .. ballroom dance music is advertised in Boleros for 5 - 7 pm. Sad to say … RCCL ballroom is Latin only … no dances such as waltz or foxtrot! RCCL seems to be gradually convincing their older clientele that they should give up cruising - Harmony is definitely geared toward young families. I could always rely on Freedom having a good mix of activities for all ages. Not so in Harmony. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
I'm a proud Royal Caribbean Crown and Anchor member but I felt Harmony was a disappointment. It felt like more passengers were added without any expansion for accommodation. Pool chairs literally touch each other side to side. ... Read More
I'm a proud Royal Caribbean Crown and Anchor member but I felt Harmony was a disappointment. It felt like more passengers were added without any expansion for accommodation. Pool chairs literally touch each other side to side. Elevator wait times were extensive (my mom cannot navigate stairs well). Bar lines were quite long. Comfort wise, those pool chairs and the lack of mini fridges (a cooler is beyond inadequate) were the worst. On the pro side, most staff were as wonderful as we've come to expect. The food was amazing and the shows were pretty good. The Escape Room was our favorite activity but the highlight for us was the Salute to Military and First Responders. Beautiful, moving and well-deserved. I look forward to my return to Allure/Oasis or Freedom class. Harmony is great for on-the-go thrill seekers, I guess, but relaxation didn't seem to be a focus at all. It's just too crowded. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
I booked this cruise specifically to see Coco Cay after it's supposed $250 million update. The cruise was a mixed bag so to speak. Check in was a breeze, no waiting. Cabin was nicely arranged & large with 2 couches for an inside, ... Read More
I booked this cruise specifically to see Coco Cay after it's supposed $250 million update. The cruise was a mixed bag so to speak. Check in was a breeze, no waiting. Cabin was nicely arranged & large with 2 couches for an inside, but was NOT QUIET.Never book a promenade view room unless you don't want to sleep. I ate all the meals in the dinning room because I couldn't stand the crowds of ill mannered people at the buffet, I mean did some of these people ever see food before ?...pigs. The food in the dinning room was good, not great.I only had to wait about 10 minutes each evening for a table, but the service was a little slow. The 2 shows I saw, ice show & show with singers & dancers was very good. The ship itself is very nice, BUT CANNOT HANDLE the amount of people that it does & on my cruise it was only 3/4 full because of hurricane Dorian. Not enough elevators, both the pools too small, the adult pool was like a sardine can. The music around the pools was just so loud, do they think everybody is deaf ? Coco Cay was a BIG LETDOWN. I am not a fan of water slides or such so I stayed on the "FREE" side. The beach are is NOT GOOD, full of seaweed & not even nice to walk around, you sank into some kind of "muck". There was also a stench of sewer all around. The freshwater pool was a joke also, just a wading pool filled with bodies. There were enough chairs around the beach & pool. The food offerings were typical beach fare. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
We were so anxious to sail on this refurbished ship since we had sailed on her before many times & loved her Sadly we were the first sailing on her after the hurricane Dorian. But on the brighter side we experienced her delivering ... Read More
We were so anxious to sail on this refurbished ship since we had sailed on her before many times & loved her Sadly we were the first sailing on her after the hurricane Dorian. But on the brighter side we experienced her delivering food & supplies to the Bahamas. It was a great experience to even bring some refugees from Freeport to Nassau. The food on this ship was average & plentiful. No reason to go hungry Luckily Nassau was not too affected by the hurricane. However, we were looking forward to Coco Cay since we also have this ship booked for a Christmas Cruise where we are taking our whole family of 14 with 6 cabins booked. Coco Cay in our opinion was not ready for visitors. The island smelled like sewage & the ocean was disgusting. After about an hour we returned to the ship as I felt sick. We just could not eat there. Our outside window cabin was very nice & our attendant was average Our dinner server was fabulous & kept us entertained. We were disappointed in the quality of the coffee in the coffee shop on deck 5. We remembered it for having excellent coffee. I guess they wanted you to use Starbucks Embarking & Disembarking went great & smooth. All told it was a relaxing getaway but nothing above average. Gjginparadise Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
Thanks to Hurricane Dorian, what was suppose to be a seven night trip to St Maarten, St Thomas, and Coco Cay turned into a three night journey to Nassau. We were very grateful to be able to board the Harmony at all, since the date of ... Read More
Thanks to Hurricane Dorian, what was suppose to be a seven night trip to St Maarten, St Thomas, and Coco Cay turned into a three night journey to Nassau. We were very grateful to be able to board the Harmony at all, since the date of embarkation had to be moved forward twice due to the storm and the closure of the port. The loss of life and destruction endured by the islands that were hit by Dorian weighed heavily on our minds throughout the trip. Day One Orlando The port reopened on Wednesday, the day we flew into Orlando (after rescheduling our flight twice). We stayed at the nearby Courtyard and took the shuttle back to the airport on Thursday. We were transferred to the port by Go Port, which had a wonderful staff updating their website with information regarding the port closure, reopening, and information on their shuttles. Unfortunately, I had booked the airport to port in advance, and gave updates to customer service regarding our new projected dates of embarkation. When we arrived to board the bus to the port, our reservation wasn’t showing up. The customer service reps at the airport counter told us to call customer service for help. Ok. We did, and that rep said that she had thought we had been taken to the port already the previous day. Really? The port was not even open in the morning, and no ships were coming in because the port staff needed time on Wednesday to inspect the port thoroughly before reopening. Finally we had the customer service person on the phone fix our reservation so that the customer service people at the counter who were waiting for her to do something for us, at last gave us tickets for the bus. My advice: just buy your ticket at the counter when you arrive- much simpler. We were checked in at the port by a gentleman using a handheld device who was helping out people before they made their way to the Royal customer service reps behind the counters. DH and I then went to the last check point before we were to move on to take the requisite boarding photo. I was stopped and taken aside when the lady checking her handheld device noticed that my name had been written as gibberish. She took me over to the area where they were helping passengers with problems. After ten to fifteen minutes of waiting, she handed me a card for my cabin door and told me to throw away the card that I would find on the cabin door since my name on the card she said would have that gibberish written on it. When we got to the cabin, the cards there had our names printed correctly. The guy with the handheld device had obviously written nonsense instead of my name- he should have been questioned instead of having the extra card printed. Oh, well. Other than that, embarkation was smooth. Day Two Nassau Nassau was spared from the hurricane. We walked around the shops and stopped at Señor Frog's. DH and I had visited Nassau on our honeymoon when instead of high end shops, I remember lots of tables and people hocking their wares in a flea market atmosphere. Much has changed since then- there was even a Diamonds International shop. Day Three At Sea This was our only sea day. A last chance to see the rest of the shows and try different venues for meals and snacks before time ran out. Sea days are usually the most relaxing, but with only three nights to enjoy the ship, there was no time to stop to rest. Our take on Harmony Harmony is a big, beautiful, overwhelming ship. We had a balcony cabin which had a double wide balcony due to not having a cabin immediately next door. Loved it! Very few of the cabins have this feature. We had dinner at Johnny Rockets the first night and tried breakfast there the next morning (underwhelming). The “sourdough” bread is probably Wonder bread. I don’t recommend the grilled cheese. On our sea day ,we failed to make a lunch reservation in advance, so we were turned away at Jaime’s and settled for Sabor which was very good. We went to the dining room one night on the only formal night. At the table next to us sat a guy in shorts, tank top, and flip flops. Oh, well. The Windjammer continues to improve in quality at the expense of the dining room. Loved the cakes and other wonderful delights served in Windjammer. All of the people in the Windjammer especially were friendly and bent over backwards to make sure that you enjoyed your meal. Sorrento’s Pizza was very good. Final Thoughts DH and I regret that we never got a chance to dine under the stars in the Solarium Bistro. All of our reservations were wiped clean at the start of our cruise due to the change in itinerary, sail date, and the addition of guests from a canceled cruise who joined us. We didn’t try to make a new reservation with such a limited amount of time onboard, but hope to dine there on another ship in the future. I bought a day pass to the thermal spa and enjoyed it. Only a few stations: steam, showers, sauna, and tiled chairs, with no ocean view. It was relaxing, nevertheless. All of this left us exhausted, made worse by the nightly noise we heard outside our cabin in Central Park. As opposed to the Broad Walk cabins, those in Central Park are suppose to be quieter, however, passengers walking through the park, or sitting around, literally yelled at each other instead of speaking in a normal tone, as late as one in the morning. Having security walk through the ship each night to make sure passengers are not disturbing the peace would no doubt be appreciated by those passengers who wanted a good night’s sleep. Due to the hurricane, many people canceled. The ship carried only 3077 passengers despite having some from a canceled cruise join us. The sign at Guest Services at the time of embarkation stated that the cruise was sold out and that no cabins were available. Obviously they were overwhelmed with various problems and didn’t have the time to try to upgrade people. There was always a line at Guest Services, not surprising since this was not a typical cruise. Our Cruise Critic get-together was under the required 25, and did not last long. Only a few people talked- mostly with complaints as to why we couldn’t go to Coco Cay, for example- (we could not go there because it was still closed pending an inspection in order to assess any damage). Many thanks to Royal for going through with the event despite the low turn-out. We managed to see six shows while we were onboard- both aqua shows, both ice shows, and both stage productions: Grease and Columbus. As I had noted on previous cruises, passengers were less than polite when it came to showing their appreciation to the performers in the theater. Many just got up and left at the end, without taking a moment to applaud. Come on people; yes, you are on vacation, but does that give you the right to be rude? Everyone works really hard to make this cruise a great experience for you, show some love. Another observation I made was that many of my fellow passengers were down right slobs. DH and I decided to enjoy one game of mini golf- only to find the bin containing the balls empty. Did someone steal all the golf balls? No, I found them strewn about the entire course, along with discarded golf clubs, and even drink glasses. Again, you are on vacation, but do you have to be so crass? Three nights is too short a time period to enjoy a ship this large. I never got a chance to just relax- a first for me on a cruise and hopefully something that won’t happen again. I also lost my connection to the sea on this ship. There were few places to stand and just enjoy being in the middle of the ocean. Too much emphasis is placed on entertainment and the “wow” factor. If you want lots of choices in everything, this is the ship for you; if however, you want to enjoy a nightly walk under the stars listening to the ocean as you sail along, you might not enjoy traveling on a ship this large. I’m glad I finally got to experience Harmony of the Seas. Next time around, I will be traveling on a slightly smaller ship, for a longer period of time. Hopefully I will be able to reconnect with the sea and finally have time to relax. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
This was our group of 6's first cruise and we were excited to get things underway. We booked flights with Air2Sea with the guarantee that there would be alternate flights available if there were any delays during our layovers. Lo ... Read More
This was our group of 6's first cruise and we were excited to get things underway. We booked flights with Air2Sea with the guarantee that there would be alternate flights available if there were any delays during our layovers. Lo and behold, we experienced a delay. When we got to the next airport station, we were told there were ZERO alternate flights available. We missed the cruise. Although they tried to make up for what happened by giving us stays in Orlando and later Cozumel, there was zero communication made with us unless we tried to call Royal Caribbean or Air2Sea first. We were promised to be updated on flight itineraries in the following morning; ultimately, we weren't updated until the night before, when we had to call them, only to find out that they made the flights without emailing or notifying us. We would have missed the flights if we didn't call. We were even told by one of the agents to "stop calling" when we were updating them on impending delayed flights. When we reached Cozumel by plane, we realized the agent did not book our hotel rooms at all. Air2Sea's international number also did not apply in Mexico (IMPORTANT TO KNOW) so we had to resort to Facebook after 2 hours of nothing else working. Finally, rooms were secured. On the day we were embarking, port security told us that 2 of the guests did not have their names on the embarking list. Apparently there may have been some miscommunication between Royal and Air2Sea. Again, we had to wait until this was resolved. When we eventually got on the ship, the experience was great! Onboard entertainment was amazing and the food in the main dining room was excellent. However, this was cut short when Hurricane Dorian happened and the ship's travel length was to be extended. Because some of us had strict work commitments, we had to leave at the next port, finishing our cruise early, cancelling our other flights, as well as having no compensation for booking these flights. In summary, we only experienced 3 of the 7 nights on the Harmony of the Seas. Although our time on the ship was amazing, the miscommunication between Royal and Air2Sea ruined our vacation. We received no compensation for the events that unfolded and this has soured our experience with Royal Caribbean. We will NOT be cruising with Royal again. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Myself, my sister, and my parents did this for a birthday cruise, sailing on Friday and coming back on Monday. We've been on over 10 cruises. It was overall, a good cruise. The ship was beautiful, being renovated recently. You ... Read More
Myself, my sister, and my parents did this for a birthday cruise, sailing on Friday and coming back on Monday. We've been on over 10 cruises. It was overall, a good cruise. The ship was beautiful, being renovated recently. You could tell, especially on the promenade, that it's been upgraded. With amenities such as starbucks, ice skating, the escape room, and laser tag, these definitely added to the value to sailing on the ship. Amenities: We did laser tag, and ice skating. Laser tag was ran really smoothly, with the staff recognizing that someone in our party's equipment wasn't properly working. They fixed this solution within seconds, which we were happy about, especially since on a previous sailing on the Liberty of the Seas, they didn't recognize that there was anything wrong, resulting in the points of someone in our party not being counted throughout the entire game. The game was around 10 minutes, and towards the end it does get fatiguing. However, it was a lot of fun. Ice skating, unfortunately, didn't go as well. There was only one opportunity to skate, which took place on the last night. The ladies that signed myself and one other person were extremely nice, and smoothly made sure that we signed all of the required papers in order to skate. However, the gentlemen that handed out the skates downstairs, was rude and dismissive, especially since one person in our parties' skates were the wrong size. Not responding when we said thank you, dismissive when I was confused over why I received a size 8 when I was a 9, with him saying "its fine", in a passive tone. All in all, skating was fun, however found it a little mundane since the music choices weren't up to par, and it went by too fast. We did not have time to do the flow rider, the sky pad, waterslides, or the escape room(cost extra). However, from the looks of it they all seemed like they would be a good time. Shows: Stage Shows: We went to the Welcome Aboard Show and the Adult Comedy. The Welcome Aboard Show was very entertaining and we enjoyed it. It was a variety show. The Adult Comedian was funny during the variety show, but only had us laughing a few times during the night time show. Gameshows: We went to the Finish The Lyric Gameshow and The Quest Gameshow. We left the Finish The Lyric Gameshow early. We thought the song choices consisted of too many oldies such as Elton John which is odd for a relatively young ship. The host running it though she seemed nice was rather boring and didn't do a good job at engaging the crowd. Also, most of the members in the game show were from one group which made it boring to watch. We've been to the Quest Gameshow on Liberty of the Seas last December, and the show on this ship did not impress as much. The show is not for the easily offended, but themes during this show were more inappropriate than the ones on Liberty. My group and I are not easily offended, but the inappropriate rounds were at least 70% of the show. This obviously varies from ship to ship, as I presume the cruise director has a large part in theming so we did not enjoy it as much. However, it is always the most exciting game show of the cruise so I will indefinitely continue to check them out. Coco Cay: Honestly, anyone looking for a cruise to go on should pick this ship just for the fact that it goes to their private island, CocoCay. It was outstanding, and as they stated numerous times throughout the cruise, the "perfect day". The amenities were remarkable, having multiple buffets so it was never too crowded with people. The buffet here was higher quality than the one on board, having many different options including as the standard choices like burgers and hotdogs, but also cuban sandwiches, portabello sandwiches, pre made salads, a taco bar, and plethora of desserts(including, as myself and my entire group stated, the best brownies they've ever ate) and fresh cookies. They also had a fruit station. In addition, having a long stretch of a beach area, a quieter beach area, and a beautiful fresh-water pool with a bar; it really made it perfect for accommodating to different groups based off different wants when you're vacationing. There was an abundance of seating, so it was good not feeling rushed to have to get there super early to get prime seating (only at the pool bar I would recommend heading there early if you want a seat near the dj and pool bar). The DJ that played at the pool was top knotch. He played current songs, and implemented multiple genres, and even line dances. It was a great mix and had us grooving the entire time. They also had the waterpark, ziplining, and the hot air balloon, which were an additional cost and we did not use. We had an amazing day at their private island, and cannot wait to return soon. Dining: The dining at the buffet food wasn't the best we've had, however, it got the job done if you wanted a snack throughout the day, such as hamburgers and hot dogs. However, during dinner time, especially if you got there early, there were a lot more options. There was even a fondue station, with a very friendly staff member handing us out whatever pastry/fruits we wanted with the chocolate fondue. The dining room was definitely an enjoyable experience, but not perfect. The waiter slightly rushed the experience, and we had him twice though we opted for My Time Dining, which can vary your seat/waiter nightly in the dining room. In addition, while there were no more guest to assist since the dining room was about to close, we still hadn't gotten our dessert yet but he was too busy cleaning up his other tables to get us our desserts, and even give us coffee(which we never got even upon request.) However, the food was always very good, and we never had to wait super long for our first two courses(appetizers and entrees). The only issue we had on the cruise was when my sister and I tried to order drinks for the first time on the ship at the pool bar during the sail away party, I guess our cards were pre printed before we were of legal drinking age(our birthday was a few days prior) so we were denied service despite the fact that we presented ID's and repeatedly told him we were of age. The manager, I believe, was very rude about the entire situation and kept repeating he could not serve us. All in all, we just went to guest services and got our cards reprinted so the indication that you are under age is removed. The gentlemen at guest services was very confused by the situation himself, clearly seeing that we were over the legal drinking age. I understand that it is an extremely big deal to not serve someone alcohol who is underage, but he lacked proper customer service communication. I'm sure that when an employee swipes your card your age is shown, so I wish he would've not treated us as if we were doing something wrong and communicated that we should go to guest services to get our cards fixed because there is an indication on your card stating you are underage because obviously we wouldn't be aware. Overall it was a nice getaway. It was a good crowd on the ship, with about 5% of the ship being rowdy, and too intoxicated for my liking. It was predominately older couples, families, and larger all middle aged adult groups. Nice ship, and with tiny improvements it could've been a 5/5 vacation. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We chose this cruise because it went out of port canaveral with good dates before moving my son back into college at ERAU. Royal Carribean is usually pricier so we had not tried it before. I found a sale on this cruise so we decided to go. ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it went out of port canaveral with good dates before moving my son back into college at ERAU. Royal Carribean is usually pricier so we had not tried it before. I found a sale on this cruise so we decided to go. We had been on Carnival Splendor and Norweigan Breakaway before this cruise. Our time to board was 1:30 but we arrived at 11 and were able to board with no wait. It was so easy! We were able to bring 12 bottles of soda and 2 bottles of wine onboard with our carry on. We got wine glasses from room service by calling dining. Once on board we went to the windjammer buffet which was good. The included water, lemonade and strawberry kiwi water was good. We drink a lot of bottled water and we're a little worried but it was fine. Our sea pass cards were attached to our cabin door. That's how we received them. We had an inside cabin on deck 7 for 4 of us: me, my husband teenaged daughter & son. The cabin was enough room for all of us. It had a small sofa ,1 large bed and 2 pull down beds for the kids. I liked the sofa since it added extra seating when there were 4 of us in there. There was plenty of storage and a small safe. I do have to say it was tight in there putting away our clothes with all 4 of us in there. We should have done it 2 at a time. Luggage fit under the bed once it was empty. There is a small safe and tv. Shower was tight as I assume most are on cruises. It was tube shape with a semi circular door. Difficult for women to shave legs. Otherwise good. Muster deck is on the back of cabin door. We were confused at first by looking at our sea pass card location. It did not tell you what deck. Muster drill was hot since they line you up in a small area. I wonder what happens if you don't show up? We were told we had to wait for everyone and it amazed me the people strolling in last minute not even looking like they were late while we were dripping with sweat from the heat. The ship is beautiful and service was excellent. You are able to go all the way to the front tip of the ship (like Titanic movie) on deck 4 where the helipad was located. We were also able to see into the bridge by going through the serenity adult pool area (deck 11 I think) go outside on the left side and to the front of the ship. They had the shades closed in the evening but you could see right in the window during the day. I did like that they left chairs out on the deck at night. When we went on the Norweigan Breakaway they put all the chairs away at night which left no place to sit. We saw the ice skating show and comedian juggler which was excellent. We did not care for the musical show. Reservations were not needed for the shows. They had mini golf, basketball court, pool, water, Slides and a rock climbing wall which were included. The padi (virtual reality thing) was included but we missed our reservation on the first day and couldn't get another time. Payment was required for the escape room and flow rider (fun to watch). They also had ice skating sessions during specific times (bring long pants & socks). There were 2 pools 1 for all and the other was adults only (16 & older). They also had these nice clam shell beds in certain areas (hard to tell if anyone was in there without going to the side & looking right in). There was included frozen yogurt on the pool deck (help yourself) which was good. Choices were vanilla, chocolate & swirl wth both. We don't care for Nassau (doesn't feel safe) so we stayed on the ship. Perfect day Coco Cay was great. We loved the little island. Best part is that there is no tender. You walk right off the ship but don't forget your sea pass card. You bring (sign out) towels from the ship and can exchange them if dry ones are needed. There were enough chairs and umbrellas for all. We didn't need to rush to the island to get chairs. They have trams but it is certainly walkable. They have some shopping and hair braiding. One section was not open yet. I believe it will open in December. There were 2 beaches. a lagoon area/beach with less waves a giant pool with a beautiful bridge and a swim up bar with music. There is also a splash zone for kids that was included. Beach was beautiful even though it rained a little while we were there. There were many jelly fish maybe because it was late August. Food was just ok. Same buffet type food as on the ship. They have a snack shack with mozzarella sticks, chicken sandwiches and funnel cakes that I thought was better than the buffet area. You had to pay extra for the water park: the water slides and wave pool. You even had to pay $18 for a floating mat if you wanted it. Had to pay for balloon ride, zip line, and any excursions (kayak, wave runner etc.) ( commercials are misleading- I originally thought everything was included) We did have a great time even without all the pay extra activities. Before the cruise I had read many reviews which mentioned bad food. I usually will read the reviews and ignore most of the negative comments since more people write a review to complain rather than say how great something is. I should have listened to the bad food reviews. We were very disappointed in the food. I have to mention that we did not partake in any of the restaurants that you pay extra for. I feel we are paying enough for the cruise and the included food should be good. Maybe not gourmet but Good enough that you enjoy going to the dining room. Unfortunately, just like many reviews said the food was not tasty. We did not enjoy it. We did go to the dining room every evening. The texture on much of the food was off and it just did not taste good. It was comparable (even worse) to dining room food on our Carnival Splendor cruise. When we went on the Norweigan Breakaway I have to say the food was good in the dining room. We looked forward to going to dinner. Breakaway even had home made crepes every evening in the buffet area made to order. The buffet on Mariner was a buffet - ok except for breakfast which was awful the first morning. It was also packed & difficult to find a table in the morning. The rest of the cruise we ate breakfast in the main dining room and it was better than the buffet but not great. If you go on Mariner eat breakfast in the dining room. Buffet hours were also limited so there were times when it was not open. Promenade cafe is open 24 hours so you can get sandwiches & pizza here. It is included. Also early bird coffee is available. Unfortunately, I would not go back on Mariner of the seas soley because of the food. Getting off the ship was a breeze. We had our luggage in the hallway outside our cabin before 11 the night before. They give you tags to put on it. Elevators are crowded/busy on the last day so I would not carry off my luggage. We had limited continental breakfast in the main dining room and then waited for our number to be called. Walked off the ship to the facial recognition, easily found our luggage which was separated by number and went to the car rental shuttle area. It was so easy. Beautiful ship but unfortunately terrible food. Maybe the people who participated in the upcharge restaurants enjoyed it? Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
My wife and I sailed on Mariner of the Seas this year to celebrate my birthday. We sailed this exact cruise last year and loved it so much that we wanted a repeat. Our Cruise Begins: Embarkation at Port Canaveral was fast and ... Read More
My wife and I sailed on Mariner of the Seas this year to celebrate my birthday. We sailed this exact cruise last year and loved it so much that we wanted a repeat. Our Cruise Begins: Embarkation at Port Canaveral was fast and seamless. We chose to park at Port Canaveral's parking lot, which cost us $85 from 8/19 to 8/23. Since we completed online check-in before the cruise and had our SetSail Passes ready, we were on the ship less than 10 minutes after walking into the terminal. The system they have in place is very efficient. There are friendly, knowledgeable staff directing passengers during every stage of the embarkation process. Once on the ship, we saw that Mariner of the Seas was just as inviting and beautiful as the first time we sailed. Hallways, common areas, and venues were consistently cleaned and maintained. I even saw staff members cleaning finger smudges off of the elevator buttons regularly. All bathrooms were clean and well stocked. The layout of the ship was easy to navigate. There was ample signage to inform passengers of where things were located and how to get there. There were plenty of reliable elevators and multiple ways to access different areas of the ship. Service: Throughout our cruise, most crew members on Mariner were friendly, attentive, and helpful. Our stateroom attendant, Shanjun, memorized our names and preferences within the first day of our arrival. Our room was spotless and he honored our requests almost instantly every time. When we walked past most crew members in the halls or venues, we were given a greeting or a friendly smile. The only staff member who wasn't friendly was one of the floating mat attendants on Cococay. She was the exception to otherwise perfect service throughout our entire cruise. Activities and Entertainment: There were so many different activities to choose from on this cruise! The cruise compass was always packed with things to do from early morning until well past midnight. We chose a few trivia games, music-related activities, pool area activities, and some audience participation activities, like the lip-sync challenge the belly-flop competition. All were very entertaining and well-organized. We didn't use any of the pools or whirlpools, as they were too crowded for our liking most of the time. The DJ's always played great music for whichever theme they were doing. The musicians were very talented and played beautifully together. The singer we encountered most was an Indonesian woman who sang passionate renditions of many different genres of music. I enjoyed all of her performances, but my wife did not. The cruise director is incredibly charming and so funny! He made our Motown Trivia experience even more enjoyable than it already was. Dining: The food on Mariner was plentiful, fresh, and delicious! We got most of our meals from Windjammer, Cafe Promenade, and by ordering room service. When ordering room service, the charge was $7.95 plus tax per order. You can order any item in any quantity and the price stays $7.95. Continental breakfast is free. Alcoholic drinks are a separate charge, even if you have a drink package. Room service was perfect for those times when we didn't want the Windjammer crowds or were tired after a long day of fun and wanted to stay in the room. The Windjammer has a great variety of foods for every taste. Every day, there were stations for pasta, salad, cold cuts, grilled foods, Indian food, and dessert. The main entrees changed daily and included a variety of international and American dishes. Everything was the perfect temperature, the food was consistently delicious, the breads were soft and never stale, and the desserts were very creative. There are drink stations that have a variety of hot and cold drinks. My favorite drinks were the fresh banana and peach juices located in the buffet area. There is a Freestyle drink machine inside Windjammer for those who have a Royal Caribbean Freestyle cup. Seating at the Windjammer is plentiful, but it can get a bit crowded depending on the time of day and whether the ship is in port. The two of us were always able to get a window seat to ourselves, with the exception of embarkation day lunch time and Cococay day breakfast around 9:30am. I love that everyone must use the handwashing station before entering Windjammer. The guitar player and singer in the handwashing station are very talented! I enjoyed hearing their cute handwashing songs while washing my hands. I do wish there were more hand sanitizer stations within the restaurant as an extra precaution. Cafe Promenade is open 24 hours and serves ready-made pizza, sandwiches, cold cuts, fruit and desserts. It's perfect for a quick bite. Our favorite dish was their crisp and tasty pepperoni pizza. There is a bar and cafe attached to Cafe Promenade that serves hot and cold cafe beverages, alcoholic beverages, and ice cream. The alcoholic drinks were weaker and sweeter at this bar, but the hot drinks were great. The Bamboo Room and Playmakers were better options in that area for bar drinks. Bar Service: We chose to buy the deluxe drink package before the cruise. This package was worth it for us, as we drank LOTS of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages throughout the cruise. We love that all bars on the ship use high-quality liquors and have plenty of experienced bartenders. There were many bars on the ship, but we spent most of our time at Sky Lounge. We always received fast, friendly service and delicious drinks! My favorite was the Coconut Mango Daiquiri. From this bar, there is a nice view of the pool deck and jumbo-screen TV. There is easy access to lounge areas and the pool area from Sky Lounge. We also visited the Schooner Bar on several occasions. It was directly next to the elevators on deck 4 and was located conveniently close to our stateroom. We ordered lots of unique drinks at this bar. We also did Harry Potter Trivia and Michael Jackson Trivia here. It has a classy maritime theme with a piano, cozy leather seats, and excellent bartenders. Port of Call- Nassau: We mostly enjoyed our time in Nassau. It was raining when we arrived. Due to poor drainage, many of the walkways at the entrance into the city were difficult to navigate. Huge puddles got our feet and shoes wet with dirty rain water, which was quite unpleasant. We got a taxi to Paradise Island for $5 per person and spent most of our day at the Riu Palace on a day pass. It is located right next door to Atlantis. Once at Riu, we got our day pass wristbands and were free to enjoy the beach, pools, bar, and dining areas. Towels were provided, drinks and food were unlimited, and the beach and pool areas were clean and well-maintained. The beach area was very beautiful. Crystal clear waters and clean white sands were abound. The only two downsides for me were the excessive amount of vendors and the rough ocean waves. The vendors were constantly walking around trying to sell cigars, hair braiding, coconut drinks, and jet ski rides. A simple "no thank you" worked to keep them moving along, but there were so many different vendors to keep saying "no thank you" to. The waves at Riu are particularly rough as compared to those at Breezes and Cococay. Even standing at the edge of the water had strong enough waves to knock people over. I'm not a strong swimmer and felt uneasy getting into the water. This is absolutely not a criticism against Riu, as they have no control over the ocean. I just know for next time to research the temperament of the ocean in the particular area I am visiting. We easily and quickly got a taxi back to the port for about $12 and did a bit of souvenir shopping. We got some tasty conch fritters and wings from a small Bahamian soul food restaurant called Aunt Jane's Delights. We tried to bring our food onboard to enjoy in our stateroom, but were told food is not allowed to be brought back onto the ship. Therefore, we had to quickly eat our food standing outside of the gangway. We know for next cruise to finish our meals before heading back to the ship. Overall we enjoyed our time in Nassau at Riu and wouldn't mind returning to explore different areas and venues on the island. Port of Call- Perfect Day at Cococay: Cococay is truly paradise. It has a brighter, more colorful, easier to navigate feel to it than the last time we visited. The waterpark and ongoing construction did not interfere with our desire for quiet relaxation, as there was a place for everyone and their preferences. A tram can take you from the ship all the way to Cococay's entrance or you can choose to walk. Once inside Cococay, another tram can take you around the island, stopping at the Up, Up and Away Balloon, South Beach, Oasis Lagoon, and Chill Island. You can easily walk to these locations as well. For a quick way to reach Chill Island, turn left upon entering Cococay and cross the bridge. You'll enter the beach area in about 5 minutes. Chill Island is where we spent most of our time. It was sunny, clean, and not at all crowded. Aside from the music playing around the island, it had a quiet, peaceful feel. Our ship was the only one docked in Cococay that day, so there were ample beach chairs, umbrellas, and tables available throughout the entire day. Even by 2pm, we never had anyone seated directly next to us. It was great! The water was calmer in some areas than others, especially due to high winds, but it was easy to find an area with gentle waters and lightly rolling waves. The water was a bit cloudy in some areas, and I swam away from at least four moon jellyfish, but I still enjoyed every second in that perfect water. The bartenders at the Wacky Seagull bar were friendly, fast, and made amazing drinks. Try a Coco Loco here if you haven't already. After spending several hours lounging and swimming on Chill Island, we walked back to Mariner early to enjoy the empty ship. I had a beautiful day at Cococay. Goodbye Mariner: Disembarkation was quick, simple, and efficient. The night before disembarkation, we were given numbered luggage tags to place on our luggage. The number corresponded to a specific meeting area and disembarkation time. The next morning, we knew exactly where to go and when. We met at the Royal Theater between 7:30-8am. After that, we exited the ship on deck 4. Once inside the cruise terminal, passengers were separated by whether they were using a passport or birth certificate/photo id to verify their identity with Customs. The passport line was longer, but both lines moved at a quick pace. After we went through Customs, we located the area that matched the number on our luggage tags. We picked up our luggage, assisted by a porter, then headed to our car. The disembarkation process from the time we left our room until we were loading luggage into our car took less than 15 minutes. If you are taking your own luggage off of the ship, the process may be even faster for you. Simply put, my second cruise on Mariner of the Seas was just as amazing as the first. We experienced consistently friendly and attentive service, delicious food and drinks, a spacious and comfortable stateroom, seemingly endless entertainment options, a beautiful ship, and interesting ports of call...a perfect cruise! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
1st time cruise with RCI. It was great start to finish.Check in went smoothly. Staff was very friendly and helpful. The ship was kept very clean though out or cruise. Hats off to the staff!! Had meals at all the restaurants that were free ... Read More
1st time cruise with RCI. It was great start to finish.Check in went smoothly. Staff was very friendly and helpful. The ship was kept very clean though out or cruise. Hats off to the staff!! Had meals at all the restaurants that were free and the food was delicious. Nassau was just ok but because of the rain. Coco Cay was a blast. Felt like we were at a all inclusive resort. Beaches were beautiful, and alot of seating on the beach. Loved the pool bar and the restaurants around the island was awesome. The entertainment was top notch. Seen a skating show, a musical, a comedian juggler and a singer that impersonates different artists, all very good. There is much more entertainment that we didn't get a chance to see, just not enough time. Just want to say again how great the staff was for taking care of us. Thank you Mariner crew!!!!! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We went on this cruise for my brother's wedding. I was just on the Allure in Feb 2019 so I've experienced a large ship. But this time, it looked even more crowded, lines everywhere for everything. Line up to wash your hands ... Read More
We went on this cruise for my brother's wedding. I was just on the Allure in Feb 2019 so I've experienced a large ship. But this time, it looked even more crowded, lines everywhere for everything. Line up to wash your hands for windjammer. The staff don't look happy at all. Copy pasted my review for Royal Caribbean: I really liked the friendliness of my wait staff on table 448 Erik and his assistant Jonabelle, they were both very approachable and excellent. On the first night, we were assigned to table 446 with Vincent, and he never smiled, just dumped menus on us, took our orders, grabbed the menus out of our hands, dumped the dishes on us, never asked if we wanted anything to drink, never asked if the food was ok, never asked us if we wanted coffee after meal. what kind of service is that?!! We're on a cruise, not at a fast food restaurant. if i ever get service like this back home, i would never go back to said restaurant. Needless to say, we switched tables the second night. windjammer's hours are RIDICULOUS!! you eat 5pm, finish a show, want to go up for some fruits, windjammer closed 8:45pm, 8pm no more fruits. no place to hang out with friends that has food past 8:45 except for Sorrento's or Park cafe and there's so much noise from poor live singing band. On the last night though, we found the Schooner's bar with good piano music and a good singing voice. Food was ok, I wouldn't go to a restaurant that serves this quality of food back home. Dessert was just sad, always the same desserts, again, I wouldn't pay for this quality of dessert back home. The warm chocolate cookie was good though but only served one night... The water slide staff were very pleasant and funny. Went to tour to visit Roatan, Honduras, it was good except they overbooked at last minute, everyone got on to the bus to realize there weren't enough seats, so we had to drive somewhere else to switch bus. This 39$ tour included the chocolate factory, it was interesting! Although my brother paid $25 booking with shore agencies. I didn't know Roatan is 2nd place to Australian for its coral reef. I would want to go back and do some snorkeling or learn scuba dive. Swam with Stingrays in Cozumel, it was very nice and the price was very decent $54. Photo package for two was $50USD, very reasonable compared to what they ask for Dolphins when I went two years ago. We also booked a kitchen tour with a special buffet, it was quite interesting to see behind the scenes of how the food is made. In resume, the main reason I enjoyed this vacation is because of the company I had in my family cruise party. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We got to the port around noon and was disappointed to find a long line at security. It took about 30 minutes to get through the line. After getting on board, it took another 20 minutes to get through the line at the buffet. I guess we got ... Read More
We got to the port around noon and was disappointed to find a long line at security. It took about 30 minutes to get through the line. After getting on board, it took another 20 minutes to get through the line at the buffet. I guess we got there at the same time as everyone else, because after that there was no line. For the muster drill, they let you meet in different areas, but did not allocate enough space. Our number was in a small part of the dining room, and we were forced to stand all packed together. They now show you a cheesy video that takes a while. The ship itself is impressive, and there are lots more activities than other ships we've been on before. However, there are also long lines sometimes. For the pizza, for the elevators (which sometimes seem to take forever), the flow rider, the zip line, and even for My Time Dining at certain times. We've done My Time Dining in its different forms on 3 cruise lines, and had never had the issues we had on this ship. On the first night, they insisted on giving me a regular reservation time of 5:15 even though I made it clear to them that was too early and I wouldn't be able to make it most nights. Then, every night when we go there later, usually around 6-6:30, they would lecture us about coming earlier the next day. Every night they did this. It was really ruining our experience. On lobster night, they sent us to the main dining room on the 4th floor, which apparently was a complete surprise to our waiter. He and the woman who was told to take us up there had an odd conversation about what we were doing there (since this was about an hour into the early set dining time). He tried to be polite to us, but you could tell he didn't want us there. I really don't understand why the dining staff at the Harmony made My Time Dining so hard. The entire point is to be able to come when you want, yet they tried to make us feel guilty every day for doing just that. The waiters themselves were actually quite good and efficient. I was impressed by how quickly the dinner service went, typically about and hour and 15 minutes or so. While there were a lot of activities scheduled on the ship, the staff running them often seemed unprepared, confused, or just bad. They had a different person running the trivia each day, and that person typically couldn't pronounce the questions (or answers) correctly. We've gone to tons of trivia sessions on numerous ship and have never run into this problem before. We even witnessed an argument between a passenger and a crew member over whether one of the answers was correct. This was also a first. For one of the dance sessions, the guy started 10 minutes late and ended 10 minutes early, for a 30 minute session that was actually was only about 10 minutes (3 songs). The dance and fitness sessions held by Sergio were great though. He was really the only entertainment staff member who seemed to take his job seriously. Most of the rest of them seemed like they were just going through the motions (and poorly at that). The staff at the windjammer buffet and the other dining locations were very efficient though. They would take your plate and clear the tables as soon as humanly possible. On several occasions in the windjammer, we had RC employees stop to ask how everything was and if we were happy with everything. The food in the dining rooms was pretty good, but lacked variety. The fool at the windjammer wasn't so good, especially for breakfast. The eggs were runny, the bacon didn't taste right, and the waffles/pancakes didn't taste fresh. They didn't seem to push alcohol as much on this cruise, which we appreciated because we don't drink. The kids got a non-alcoholic drink from the robot arm. Why do they charge a service charge for a robot-made drink? We had an ocean view balcony cabin which was nice. Unfortunately, we had a 'service animal' in the room next to us. It was a little fluffy shih tzu which would bark periodically. I don't know what service a shih tzu provides besides keeping his owner company, but it didn't seem quite right on a cruise ship. We got guarantee cabins which turned out to be a mistake, because RC put our kids in a cabin very far away from our cabin. We were given our cabin as soon as we booked, 4 months out, but our kids weren't given theirs until 2 weeks before sailing. We won't be booking a guarantee again. We had reservations for most of the shows, but that turned out to be unnecessary except for the first night (Grease) and the water show, which was always packed. Grease was inappropriate for children. The water show was impressive, but ours was cancelled halfway through due to the rain. The ice skating show was boring - our kids all left about 15 minutes in. The comedians they had were ok, not great. The kids enjoyed the juggler/comedian. We paid for the all digital photo package, which is $310 onboard, but they give you a $30 discount if you buy it within the first 2 days on the ship (it was only $250 online before the cruise). We got 300+ photos taken, and at least 100 of those were good ones - we even had them take individual photos of the kids - so we got our money's worth. Their photo kiosks only work during certain hours when manned by their photographers. That was annoying. After paying for the package, I was given a website I could go to to see all the photos I purchased. It didn't work that well, but they said it was still in the testing phase. Disembarkation was the smoothest we'd ever experienced. We were allowed to stay in our room until our number was called, immigration only took a minute as they do facial recognition now from the passports, and were walked right out of there with no wait. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
I went on this cruise because my brother was getting married on this ship. It was mostly enjoyable. Embarkation was very easy. Did the online pre check it. Did not have to wait in line much. Keys were in the room waiting. All rooms are ... Read More
I went on this cruise because my brother was getting married on this ship. It was mostly enjoyable. Embarkation was very easy. Did the online pre check it. Did not have to wait in line much. Keys were in the room waiting. All rooms are ready at 1pm. We boarded the ship earlier, we just walked around the vessel and had quick lunch and Johnny rocket (12$ fee) The muster drill was very painful and useless. I understand no one enjoy those, but I appreciate to know what to do in emergency. My drill station was in the aqua theatre in the middle of summer outside under the sun. No one was listening the demonstration. And they had a problem with the sound, so we cannot hear anything. I don't even know where was my life jacket if something bad were to happen. I hope the ship will change that cause it is very dangerous. I have a balcony room with my husband near the middle back of the ship. The room was clean and very spacious. Very convenient for most of the places. We were on the 8th floor cannot near noises from outside public area except when passenger walked by, which is normal. BUT the room we had was a connecting room ... and the kids next door would have a crying episode everyday! And you can hear everything by the connecting door. It was awful! They should consider giving these room to people who want to have connecting rooms only!!! The ship is very big, but I find that we didn't have much public area where friends can hangout quietly. The only place that is open at all time is the cafe promenade, very small area. The windjammer (buffet) close at 8:45. It is waaaayyyyy too early. They didn't even leave a small section open for snack or getting drink. Side note the whole buffet is badly organize: One time we had to Line up to get in the windjammer.... I don't ever remember needing to line up for any buffet on cruises. Not line up to get food, line up to get in!!! Service of the crew member were mediocre. Many crew I pass by don't look happy. They are there because they have to kind of attitude in most of the crew in this ship. Even met a very grummy waiter, his name is Vincent serving in grande main dining room. No smile, didn't ask if we need anything more, always disappear, cannot find him except when he takes the order and bring the food. Very abrupt and impatient. We didn't even get to order drink. Lucky we didn't have to stay at his table. We move to Erik and Jonabell table, they were very pleasant and smiley. Patient with our order and request. They are sailing 2nd week with the ship so they are not fully familiar with everything but I appreciate them trying. Most of other crew member are not very happy "looking", one time even heard two member having a small argument in front of guest, quite unprofessional. Our room steward was very hard working kept my room very clean the whole week. Have some folding towel that makes me happy! The shows are very impressive and good. Like the aqua show and skating show. But the singing performance I didn't really like. They were very loud. Some singer sing almost every night at the promenade super loud and sometimes off key... or just sound like yelling or screaming. Maybe I just don't like loud. The guys who plays piano at the schooner bar was much more enjoyable. I had fun with the water slides and the ultimate abyss. Didn't get to the zip line and surf. Food quality is good. But they have no dessert that I enjoy. Every night is the same menu for dessert, with 2-3 new item per day. Disembarkation was very easy and fast. No line again just walk off the boat. I would for sure not choose this ship ever again, is a big ship that can hold lots of passenger with a few extra spot for activities, but badly organize and trying cut cost with things like buffet hours is awful. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We came all the way from New Zealand to come on harmony of the seas. We were not disappointed. Ship is just amazing. We personally did not find it crowded. Staff were fantastic except 1 man at guest services. Besides that really could ... Read More
We came all the way from New Zealand to come on harmony of the seas. We were not disappointed. Ship is just amazing. We personally did not find it crowded. Staff were fantastic except 1 man at guest services. Besides that really could not fault anything. We had inside cabin as doing Alaskan cruise 2 weeks later. Saved balcony for that one. Inside we were actually impressed. Size was not to bad as had smaller. We enjoyed a cafe on deck 8 it was called park cafe located in central park. We are there for breakfast and some lunches. We went to chops and grill. That was our favorite. Wonderland was good and different. Worth a try. Central 150 good to. We were not totally impressed with Izimu hibachi as had better .also we would not rave about Jamie Oliver's. Shore Excursion were good. We just think it was a great experience. Shows and the entertainment were world class. Best we seen on a cruise ship and I've done 21 cruises. Best cruise Director ever I have seen on a cruise. Dennis I'm pretty sure his name was.we would go again if lived closer.we just loved it. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
My husband and I have been on many cruises and we have been on two Royal Caribbean before, but never on a ship this large. I was worried that it would be so crowded, but that was not our experience. SHIP The ship itself was ... Read More
My husband and I have been on many cruises and we have been on two Royal Caribbean before, but never on a ship this large. I was worried that it would be so crowded, but that was not our experience. SHIP The ship itself was beautiful. There were so many areas to explore. Central Park with the live trees was really nice as well as the boardwalk with the carousel. The main promenade has lots of shops and restaurants and was decorated nicely. There was the bionic bar, and the rising tide bar. There were many venues for music and dancing. There were waterslides, the abyss (a dry water slide) an ice skating rink, two rock climbing walls, a miniature golf area, ping pong tables, a basketball court, 2 flow rider areas and a water stage area for performances. CABIN We chose an inside cabin and were on deck 8 which was a great location. The cabin was laid out nicely and there was plenty of storage. Our room steward was good, not great. He made towel animals 3 out of the 7 nights. Room was always clean and he came twice a day. ENTERTAINMENT Entertainment was excellent. We saw all of the shows. Grease was fantastic with a very talented cast. We saw two ice shows. The second one, I-Skate was really good. The first one 1887 about the French Revolution was a little strange, but still good skating. There were two comedians we saw at the Attic and in the theater. They were both excellent and we laughed constantly. They also had a headliner who was a juggler/comedian and he was really great too. Very warm and interacted with the audience and really entertaining. The water show at the aqua theater was good too. There was one strange guy who was spinning a lot but the things they did from the diving to flying in the air, to walking a tightrope, to the synchronized swimming was fantastic. They also had 2 parades through the promenade which were nice and they had karaoke every night which was actually fun and lots of music and dancing in different clubs. They had some belly flop and cannonball contests in the pool on sea days and those were very funny although very crowded. The only show we thought was very strange was Columbus, the musical. It was a comedy musical based on Christopher's cousin. They sang modern songs and it was the same cast who performed Grease. Definitely our least favorite. But overall the entertainment was top notch. Make sure you make all reservations before getting on the ship for the shows. They are all free and then you don't have to stand in a standby line and hope to get in. DINING We had breakfast at Windjammer most mornings. Food was good but it was usually very crowded. We ate also a few times at the Solarium Bistro for breakfast. They had the same things that they had at Windjammer on a smaller scale, but it was much quieter and calm. If we were on ship during the day (only 2 sea days), we would eat at the Doghouse (good hotdogs in the boardwalk area) or at Minibites for hotdogs, hamburgers, nachos, etc. Once we went to the Windjammer for lunch. There was also soft ice cream on the pool decks that was really popular. When we boarded, we ate at the Park Café and it was very nice with paninis, salads, etc. For dinner we chose my time dining because we didn't want to be stuck to a set time. We did make reservations before getting on the ship for all dinners which is very smart to do. We ate at the Icon Grill on deck 3 and had the best waiter and helper ever. We ended up requesting them every night and were able to sit in the same place. Our guys were Iwayan and Ketut and they were beyond fantastic, catering to our every need. We were with friends so there were 4 of us each night. All food was good and there were plenty of choices every night. Sometimes we even got two appetizers because there were so many great things to choose from. High praise for the food and staff at American Icon. We also had pizza at Sorrentos one night after a show. It was okay. SERVICE Service overall was great. All workers were pleasant, helpful and said hello. No complaints at all. PORTS Coco Cay- was fantastic. We have been to many cruise ship islands and hands down, this was the best. They have everything there and it is laid out so nicely. The beach areas were great with a ton of chairs and umbrellas. There is also a huge pool with a swim up bar, large enough for 2,200 people!! They had a DJ and the pool although crowded, was really fun. They had some kid areas for them to play and with the waterpark, that left the pool to have more adults which was nice. There was ziplining, for a fee, a cool hot air balloon ride for a fee, and an awesome looking water park (which was expensive) but lots of families were there and it looked really cool. There were 3 places for lunch and the food was the best and most varied of any ship's island food we had. Top notch and it was nice that there were 3 different places to get your food so depending where you sat, you went to the closest place and it was not overly crowded. We really had a great day there. Kudos to RC for making their island so great. There were also plenty of little shops and stores that sold Bahamian goods. It really was a perfect day at Coco Cay. Costa Maya-nice port and so many things to do right at the port if you didn't want to leave. We did a tour not with the cruise as I can always find better, less expensive , smaller tours on my own. We went with Native Choice tours and they were great. We went to Chacchobben Ruins and to Bacalar 7 colors lake and had lunch. We had a great tour guide and a very nice day. Roatan-we went to Little French Key as we have been there before and love it. It's a small private island with everything included and there is so much to do there. Great day. Cozumel-We have been there many times and this time decided to make a reservation at Mr. Sanchos beach club. This was $55 pp for all you can eat and drink all day. The place was great. It included kayaks and the ocean was beautiful and so clear. They had two pools with swim up bars. The entire staff was great and worked their butts off. There was lots of shopping there too. Highly recommend for a relaxing day. EMBARKATION AND DISEMBARKATION Both went very smoothly and no problems whatsoever. Good system they have. Although the ships holds 6,600 passengers and we were told it was full, it never felt overly crowded. Things were spread out really nicely. We loved their nightly themed parties in the promenade that had 80's and 90's, etc. We loved trivia at the Schooner Bar and loved the informal talk and questions with the captain and some of the head officers. One of the nicest thing I have ever seen was a tribute they did to all of the Veterans. It was held on the last sea day. The captain, cruise director, and head hotel guy all were elevated at the rising tide bar with an American flag draped and recognized all Veterans from all wars who served and people that have passed. There were a lot of Veterans on board visibly moved. They had a bugle player play taps, had a moment of silence, then our cruise director, Dennis sang a beautiful rendition of the star spangled banner while all of the ships officers lined the promenade. The chef even made a gigantic American flag cake for the passengers to enjoy afterward, The entire event was really moving and really nice. Kudos to RC!! The pool areas were crowded as they always are especially on sea days, but that is expected so although you are like sardines, it's okay. Because you can also use the water slides (3 of them), zipline, rock climb, use the flow rider, play golf, basketball, ping pong, etc. as another option besides the pool. There were plenty of chairs in the pool area so we were always able to find something. We have no kids so we cannot speak about that but they did have a great kid pool section for the little ones. The gym and spa also seemed nice although we did not use them, we walked through. Overall, a fantastic vacation on a truly beautiful ship with so many things to do!! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Never cruised before and what a fabulous introduction!! I cannot complain about one thing. My husband and I and 3 children, 22,18, and 14 all loved it. Cruise director Marcel was magnificent as well as Michele the comedian and the ... Read More
Never cruised before and what a fabulous introduction!! I cannot complain about one thing. My husband and I and 3 children, 22,18, and 14 all loved it. Cruise director Marcel was magnificent as well as Michele the comedian and the wonderful ice show. Windjammer Buffett has a very diverse menu and cleanliness was very evident. Much ease checking in and out and Coco Cay was an absolute joy. Even though I had a regular cabin, no extras, it was perfect for 2. My children were on a different floor and the 3 of them also had enough room with a great window looking out. I would definitely recommend and make sure to buy the drink package!! As for the excursions at Nassau, I would recommend pre buying them. They are more expensive on the ship. I did the dolphin and stingray at Blue lagoon and it was worth the money because you get to spend the rest of the day at the beach. Bring water and towels from the ship. As for Coco Cay, don’t miss the Oasis Lagoon. Swim up bar and lounges in the pool. My children did water park and said it was very nice. However, they went at 830 in the morning with no lines and were able to do everything a few times. I cannot wait to cruise again!! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Port Canaveral Arrival: We live on the east side of Orlando so I time it as follows: Leave house at 12 noon, park at the new garage at the Port (85 dollars for the Monday through Friday cruise; pay as you enter via automated gate, very ... Read More
Port Canaveral Arrival: We live on the east side of Orlando so I time it as follows: Leave house at 12 noon, park at the new garage at the Port (85 dollars for the Monday through Friday cruise; pay as you enter via automated gate, very easy), get through security and walk in room at 100 pm (we roll are own luggage on). There were four of us travelling; us mid fifties and our two adult (21/24) sons. Security/Embarkation: As stated above, was parked by 1230, through security by 1245, checked in with a rep by 1255 and walked in room just as they were opening. Since Royal has numerous check in reps roaming with hand-held devices we barely stopped walking from the time we got through security and got to our rooms. Why any one would pay for the"Key" or worry about status is beyond me at check in. As long as you had your set sail pass and docs/passports in hand you get checked in at lightning speed. Seapass cards waiting at room. Rooms/Ship/First Impression: We had two balcony rooms on the "hump" port side, floor 6. Excellent location, easy access to promenade and lower decks. Ships looks great, clean; rooms are average, could use updating. Put your water, soda in cooler/fridge right away. It does not get very cold. Cabin attendant was fine; quiet fellow but was around as needed and kept ice for us in our rooms as asked (extra cash tip likely helped). Lots of pushy up-sell for dining packages, specialty restaurants at boarding. We just said a polite no and kept walking. Plus the promenade looks more like a flea market with all the t-shirts, watches and junk littering the entire area. Not appealing at all. Drinks/packages: We bought the ultimate drink packages prior to sailing; I think we paid about 48 dollars a person (was watching on-line) per day. Good thing; the price was 81 a day for the first person and then "half price" for second person if you bought day of sailing. RCCL has got to be kidding with this "half price" gimmick. Whatever. Drink package well worth it. A domestic 16 ounce beer is now 9 dollars plus 18 percent gratuity, wine 13, and it only goes up from there. You also get the soda, bottled water, etc. with package and can use it on CoCo Cay. So we were happy with the drink package. Still carried on two bottles of wine for room and soda allowance (12 pack) for room cooler. No drinks cards ever sold (4 night cruise). Muster/Sail Away: Same old same old; stand outside and sweat for 20 minutes. We got there as late as possible. Plenty of time to get topside for sail away. Lots of servers on deck. Food/Bars: Food was average at best. The MDR (used two of four nights) was half full. Service was very good. Wear whatever you want because no one cares anymore. Main courses tasted bland and "banquet" quality, mass produced. I know it's mass produced but was not as good as previous cruises. MDR breakfast was better than dinner. My favorite omelet of the week (ham/cheese) was the one that came with room service. The Wingoldjamcorraler was a buffet; feeding trough. Borderline disgusting. Not sure what was worse the people there or the food. Just a mess. Horrible coffee, and something that sort of resembled orange juice. Best part about it was the guys singing as you walked in. Pizza on promenade best we have ever had on RCCL. Sandwiches actually pretty good also. Donuts in morning stale. Decent hot dogs/brats, slaw, potato salad on pool deck. Two ice cream machines on pool deck worked great, hardly any lines. Not sure why but never, ever, once waited for a drink at any bar, including pool. Sat in solarium one day, multiple roving servers. Even at Schooner Bar, casino bar, pub, etc., all had multiple bar tenders who were beyond helpful. Even the pools never seemed crowded and we got two chairs in solarium on sea day. Playmakers is nice but never saw anyone once order any food; it was never crowded. Bamboo lounge nice also as well as Pub. Great singer in there multiple nights and no one was ever in there, had the whole place to ourselves; we love live music but all the venues seemed to be under attended for some reason. Smoking: It is an absolute joke that it is almost 2020 and there is still smoking on half the pool deck and the casino. The casino smoke escapes into most of the areas surrounding the space; it is awful. On the pool deck parents were sucking down cigarettes, sitting with there small children; horrible. Hey Royal, just stop it, now. Designate some smoking areas away from the ones that are infecting the rest of the ship. CoCo Cay: We have been CoCo Cay several times. This is such a vast improvement it is hard to describe. Great food (two big venues with incredible array of fresh Tex Mex, salads and more, snack shacks with take away burgers, chicken sandwiches, mozzarella sticks). I liked the food better here than on the ship. Go to Youtube, there are numerous great videos showcasing the Island. Remember, you do not have to pay for a thing; all the zip lines, hot air balloons, water park are optional; there are more than enough beach chairs, umbrellas for all; and we got there late morning. Lunch in the big venues goes to 330 in the afternoon; zero lines ample tables. No other cruise lines private island comes close to this. Plus your drink package follows you on island and with the permanent dock the ship will never miss the stop (which happened allot before). Dogs: No (fake) service/emotional support animals!! Yes....! Crew: Very friendly, seems like a happy crew. Much happier than our last cruise on Independence. Entertainment: Pretty good; Guy from Jersey Boys show in Vegas was great; magician was entertaining. Comic probably not right for this ship (older female; more appropriate for a Holland America crowd). Cruise director was funny; do not recall his name, is from Chile and seemed like a nice enough guy. Nassau: We booked our own private excursion (less than 8 people) on a small boat; 4 hours (two snorkeling stops, remote beach, drinks, snacks included, very reasonable price); 5 dollar a person cab ride to a small marina. Allot of you are "stay on the boat" in Nassau people; do yourself a favor and get on Tripadvisor and find some out of the way things to do. New Providence is a beautiful island and there is lots to see and do beyond the Port; friendly people and great out of the way stops if you look. We did not go this trip but Atlantis is free (hotel/lobby/aquarium) after 5 pm. All aboard was 830 pm so many times you will have the chance. Debarkation: We did self assist off. Left room at 705 am (had to be out of rooms by 8 am anyway - did not really want to do the buffet madhouse on last morning); took elevator down to four and never stopped walking. One last seapass card scan (funny, one lady got stopped by security at last scan, was told to go to guest services/not allowed to leave ship - never seen that before), walked down to Customs; exited via facial recognition/never showed passport or anything. Was in car by 725. Some of you people remember what a zoo debarks were; this is such a vast improvement it is hard to describe how easy it is now. Overall: Great four night cruise; I think the 3 night would feel rushed. Mariner is such an improvement over the last ships that did this cruise (Majesty/Enchantment/Monarch); and having been on the bigger ships than Mariner, do not think could ever go on this cruise on anything smaller than Mariner. Would give it an 8/10 rating. CoCo Cay was definite high point. Only advice I would give is shop prices early (drink packages/even cruise fare); because prices were dramatically higher closer to sailing (for cruise fare also; book as early as you can). Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We had a fabulous cruise. We sailed on the Mariner in a grand suite and loved it. We will never go anything below a grand suite from now on. The extra perks service, and huge room and balcony are so worth it. We have previously only ... Read More
We had a fabulous cruise. We sailed on the Mariner in a grand suite and loved it. We will never go anything below a grand suite from now on. The extra perks service, and huge room and balcony are so worth it. We have previously only cruised on Oasis twice, both times in regular balcony staterooms. THE SHIP: The Mariner was better than I expected for being an older ship (relatively). A few areas smelled a little musty, but they were few and far between. Certainly not enough to ruin my vacation like some people. Overall the appearance was beautiful and clean. The renovations looks great, although I have nothing to compare it to with it being my first time on Mariner. The water slides were a lot of fun too. For us, cruising is about being on a private balcony to enjoy the ocean, and going to the ports. We do not like crowds or rowdiness. Pretty much all of the activities or bars or what-have-you are not interesting to us, therefore we do not partake in the venues or music or dancing or drinking. So take this review with that in mind. THE FOOD: I always preface cruise food reviews with the fact that I am easy to please and will eat anything. I thought the food was fine. Could it be better? Sure. Could it be a whole lot worse? You betcha. The burgers in the windjammer are A LOT better than I remember on Oasis. There also seemed to be more of a selection than I remember as well. Like a taco bar among other varieties of foods. The only real "complaint" I would have had was that the room service pancakes were literally hard as rocks. You could throw them as frisbees. LOL. But again, will that ruin my vacation? Nope, just head upstairs to the buffet and get some more. Easy peasy. You can order from the MDR for room service, and the food was good. I would have liked to have seen actual chocolate cake though. I don't care for the moussey kind with thin layers of cake. THE STATEROOM: Our grand suite was beautiful. This is the largest stateroom category we have stayed in so far. Everything was spotless and perfect. Two loungers on the balcony as well as a table and chairs (with cushions!). Our attendant was incredible. The Suite Lounge was a really great perk for us. Our concierge Sue was fabulous and helpful. There were snacks and drinks available. They had me at chocolate strawberries. The lounge was such a nice and quiet, uncrowded area of the ship. Like I said, we do not like large and loud crowds, so typically we tend to stick to our private balcony, or areas of this ship where people aren't. PORTS: Had two amazing days - one in Nassau at Blue Lagoon, and then one at Coco Cay. No complaints. In the words of Jim Halpert, "I'm not a complainer". Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Oh where to start... The cruise started as a bit of a disaster. First, when I went to check in, they did not have me on the manifest ANYWHERE. Apparently their archaic AS400 system did not bring me over onto the manifest. So they had to ... Read More
Oh where to start... The cruise started as a bit of a disaster. First, when I went to check in, they did not have me on the manifest ANYWHERE. Apparently their archaic AS400 system did not bring me over onto the manifest. So they had to manually check me in at the customer service desk and print my card there. That would have been all good and well, except that we had paid for the drink package, which was NOT listed on my card and thus my card did not work for drinks. Yay. I ended up having to purchase the bracelet so I didn't have to go through the spiel at each bar and have them try to figure out what was going on, but that is for later. They use a mishmash of computer systems which caused non-stop problems the first couple of days.This included random surcharges showing up on our room. Poor customer service must have groaned whenever they saw me coming because they knew there were more charges to remove. The random surcharges happened to everyone in our party and judging from the constant line at customer service, I am guessing we weren't the only ones. My suggestion for checking in is to make sure that you have a paper copy of your reservations. The systems don't always talk to each other and if that's the case, the barcode on your phone won't work. Absolutely make reservations for the shows. This ensures that you get a good seat and since we had my grandparents with us, we never had to wait in the standby lines which can get quite long. Although, again, there were some glitches with their computers randomly cancelling and reassigning us to different shows. We had to take care of that once we got on board. The shows themselves though were amazing. My grandfather is a hard man to please and he loved them all. Making the reservations ensures that you will get to see them all, and I highly recommend seeing all the shows. For those of you going on the Harmony, the ship rocks a surprising amount for the size. I get sea sick easily and as a preventative put a sea sick patch on prior to boarding. However the first night I encountered quite a few women in the restrooms rather sea sick. Just something to keep in mind as Royal has no control over the wave size. If you know you're prone to sea sickness, take measures to prevent it. Our cabin was an interior cabin, but it was lovely. I learned a lesson and will get a window or balcony next time. Sea sickness and interior do not go well together. Not Royal's fault, all mine on this one. Our cabin steward though was amazing. He always had a smile on his face and asked us how our day was. Loved him and loved the cute towel animals he left us! For those of you that are early risers like myself, you will be disappointed. Very few amenities are available for early risers. There is only one coffee shop that opens somewhat early. I enjoyed going up to the solarium before anyone else was up and just relaxing. Caution though, it gets HOT up there. It is covered in glass with very little ventilation. Also, for an adults only area, kids order at the bar there a surprising amount. There also is no pool in the adult only section, just a bunch of hot tubs. It would be nice to see even a small pool in the adult only section. For those of us that look forward to the soft serve machines, prepare to be severely disappointed. They are only open for a few hours a day, you cannot serve yourself, there are no toppings and the only flavor options are vanilla/strawberry swirl or chocolate/strawberry swirl. The desert options in the buffet weren't that great either. The Windjammer had excellent food, but much like the Solarium, it was uncomfortably hot in there, no matter the time of day. The food choices varied day by day which was nice, but it was not really a pleasant experience to eat up there. The only saving grace was our attendant Cipran. Nicest guy and always had a fresh mimosa for me. The man is a saint. It's best if you can just explain the drink you want to bar tenders. Even though there is a standard drink book at each of the bars, many of the bartenders don't really know the drinks in them and you often have to point them out. Just tell them how to make it and you'll be fine. I did have one bad experience with a bartender when I ordered a drink and he looked me in the eye and said "You know that drink is literally my nightmare, right?" Seriously dude, I just wanted to try the drink. The Central Park area is fantastic first thing in the morning and in the evening they often have musicians up there. My fiance and I really enjoyed that area a lot. It was a great spot to relax and decompress from the day's activities. The plants were beautiful and with the open air above, at night it was simply gorgeous. 10/10 would spend more time there. The band is a good idea in concept, they seem to have some glitches to work out still. It did not work in Coco Cay because their computer systems were down... again. Let me tell you, first port of call and I was already tired of the computer glitches. And yet, they continued. On St. Marten, people were having trouble getting on and off the ship because the systems went down again. So many complaining people about missing their dinner times and shows. I get it, the main dining room food was spectacular. The main dining room was nothing but exceptional. The only thing I didn't enjoy was having all the waiters do a dance. I worked at a Johnny Rockets back in the day. There was nothing I hated more than having to stop working to do a dance in the middle of a rush. I can relate to these servers. They are busy, please just let them do their job. I don't need to be entertained during dinner. Our server Erik was amazing. He regularly made my grandfather laugh and made the entire dining experience amazing. The food was beyond fantastic. We didn't try any of the specialty dining options because we honestly never really felt the need to. The menu changes nightly and we were never once disappointed with the food. Okay, I think that about sums it up. Royal, get on the ball and fix your computer systems. That initial day was so incredibly frustrating and having to buy the band just to stop going through the hassle was annoying. The band is a great idea though... when it works. I only encountered the one rude bartender the entire time, so that says something for your staff. Honestly, most of the staff was simply amazing. I loved talking to them and hearing where they were all from. The activities offered onboard were okay, but the only way to learn about any of them was through the app. The ship is massive and beautiful. Once onboard, you don't even realize there are almost 7000 people on the ship with you. We booked all of our shore excursions ourselves. The ones offered by Royal were a little too touristy. We booked tours of the islands privately and had a great time. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Although I rated this cruise a 4, I would really give it a 4.5 as it was a great week aboard the Harmony of the Seas, but not perfect. This was also my first time booking a suite and I will never book anything other than a suite for any ... Read More
Although I rated this cruise a 4, I would really give it a 4.5 as it was a great week aboard the Harmony of the Seas, but not perfect. This was also my first time booking a suite and I will never book anything other than a suite for any future cruises. If you have the money for a suite, it is 100% worth it. EMBARKATION- Being a suite guest, you have your own entrance and get escorted to your own personal attendant. My family and I were checked in via a tablet, had our pictures taken, and were on the boat in under 10 minutes. Fantastic. I was also carrying a bit of an injury and was limping about, but was very delighted that I was offered assistance by at least 6 people making my way to the ship. MUSTER DRILL- A note on everyone's favorite muster drill. I have been on 6 cruises all on different ships and the muster drill on the Harmony of the Seas was by far the worst of all. Most of the muster stations are located on the promenade level and not even in actual locations (i.e. the Casino or MDR). They are just located in "areas" of the promenade (mine was near the bionic bar), and they cram so many people in these "areas" and they want you to watch an instructional video on 40" TVs. The video also was made to "entertain" as you are following a spy across the ship and on the mission, the spy comes across "tips" to follow in the event of an emergency. I would assume it was not very easy to follow for most and due to the noise level of all the guests around you crammed into these stations, it is not easy to hear. Knock on wood that there is never an emergency on the Harmony, because I have the feeling it would be a disorganized mess. DEBARKATION- Another suite guest perk is that you meet in the fabulous coastal kitchen at 3 pre-determined meeting times. There was breakfast or hors d'oeuvre being served by 7am and then groups are personally escorted by the concierge all the way down in a priority elevator which makes no stops to the luggage pick-up location. Probably took us 10 minutes to get off the ship. SHIP - I have also sailed on the Oasis of the Seas and if you have been on that ship, you have been on the Harmony. Sure the Harmony has a few more amenities and entertainment, but it honestly didn't feel like I was on a completely different ship. Elevators can be a problem on Embarkation and Debarkation (if not a suite guest) and immediately after shows or events as all guests filter out of them. I didn't ever feel like the ship was crowded at all, even in the pool areas on sea days (the pools are another story). I also mentioned to my wife that I didn't think the boat was anywhere near capacity either, so that could have been why. There need to be more pools or the pools need to be bigger. On sea days the pools are packed, so basically you are just standing in the water. My son likes to move around in the pool, so he didn't enjoy them as much and spent most of his time in the kids water area. I stayed away from the pools because I don't need to be in a pool with 50 people all with drinks in their hand which they are probably spilling. I'll pass. Another perk of being a suite member is that you can get towels without scanning your seapass card. Other guests must scan their seapass to get a towel and if not returned, you get charged $25. Suite gets get as many towels as needed and don't need to worry about returns (although we always returned ours). ENTERTAINMENT - Only caught two shows as we chose to relax on sea days. Did see the ice skating show 1887 which I liked, but wasn't very interesting according to the wife and son. The Line water show was great and we even ran into some of the performers on the non-performance days. KIDS CLUB - Hours are 9-12, 2-5, 7-10, and after hours which you pay $7 an hour for. My son who is 6 enjoyed the activities and was even asking us to take him on sea days! Must be good! FOOD - Suite guests get access to the coastal kitchen and to my family the Coastal Kitchen was the star of the cruise. They serve Breakfast, lunch, dinner, and hors d'oeuvre and there is a happy hour between 4:30 and 8 where select alcohol is free. Let me repeat this for all my alcohol consumers, there is FREE alcohol on a cruise ship. To me, that alone was worth having access to the Coastal Kitchen and my family had dinner there every night. It is also a more relaxing environment as there are 100x less people dining there as in the MDR. Breakfast and Lunch are your standard fare and the selection is the same everyday. But the dinner menu changes nightly and the food was very good. There was lamb, filet mignon, lobster, duck, salmon, you name it. There really was no need for us to eat in the MDR. The Coastal Kitchen was also were we met the service star of the cruise Rico. Wow, Rico was one of the best servers I have had the pleasure to meet anywhere. Knew everyone's name and beverage of choice on Day 2. Never let your glass hit empty before the next drink was on your table, gave excellent recommendations to eat. Rico is a treasure on this ship. Sorrento's - Decent "fast food" pizza. Johnny Rockets - Breakfast is free and the food is good. Serve omelettes, breakfast sandwiches, and pancakes. Windjammer - Horrible. Cold, Bland, Tough, all adjectives you don't want associated with your food. STAY AWAY! Park Cafe - Decent selection of "healthier" options like panini's, salads, pre-made sandwiches and salads. Nice eating area in Central Park Boardwalk Dog House - Pretty good dogs, that tasted fresh. I went with the Coney Island Dog with onions and sauerkraut. EXCURSIONS- Perfect Day at CocoCay was great. We were the only ship in port and as I stated earlier, I don't even think our ship was at capacity, so the island did not feel crowded at all. My family rented a cabana in the Water Park, which was very nice and convenient with a personal waiter, locker, and plenty of water as it was HOT. I was able to get on all the water slides (note that two of them get long lines the slingshot and the daredevil's peak (the tallest slide). My advice is to hit these slides right when you get off the ship or right at the end of the day or else you will be waiting in a long line. There was a storm off the island that caused the park to shutdown for about an hour, so many guests left back to the ship as Royal was refunding half day passes. My family also went up in the Hot Air Balloon which was cool, but not worth the money for the 10-15 minutes you are up there. Note for those with kids that 48" is the magic number to get on most of the slides. My son is 44" so he was limited on the slides he could get on, but he LOVED the wave pool. It was HOT, but being in the water felt great. San Juan - We did the El Yunque Natural Rainforest walking tour from El Yunque Tours which is a bit a ways from the ship. There is a 45 minute narrated bus ride to the site, where the guide gives you background on the history of Puerto Rico, the impact of the hurricane, and the El Yunque site. When you get to El Yunque, you have four stops. A brief 15 minute stop at an observation tower, which gives you great views and picture taking opportunities, a 5 minute stop at a waterfall on the side of the road to take a group photo, a stop to gear up where you are provided with backpacks, bug spray, water, snacks, umbrellas, and towels. Very high marks for the tour company for providing all these items. They say they are the "one stop shop" operation. Last stop is a good walk to a natural river pool to swim swim for about 20 minutes before heading back to the ship. High marks for Angel, Jorge, Michelle, and the owner Mike who are very knowledgeable and informed about the island. Returned to do a bit of shopping around the port. Shopping is better in Saint Maarten. St. Maarten- I did the Snuba Adventure through Snuba SXM. Great team of 3 (Sheldon, Mitch, Jonas (captain), are very laid back, but very knowledgeable. They stated that the hurricane had damaged 90% of the coral on the island and you could tell. I have done Snuba on 3 other occasions in different locations and I saw the least amount of fish in Saint Maarten. The water is nice and clear though and they have the staged helicopter and shipwreck underwater you can see. Still fun. My wife and son did the Pinel Island excursion and said they had a great time on the white sand beach. Iguanas everywhere that you can feed, my son loved that!. Did some shopping at the shops in the port area and found great deals on souvenirs, alcohol, and jewelry. Better deals than seen in San Juan for sure. Overall, the family had a great time and my son was asking if we could stay on the ship for a few more days. I have always been a fan of Royal Caribbean and we are looking to do a Mediterranean cruise next year. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
This ship is new and beautiful. There are a few things that I would recommend them adding and changing such as, the soda package comes with a refillable plastic cup which is nice and eco friendly but the problem I am having is there is ... Read More
This ship is new and beautiful. There are a few things that I would recommend them adding and changing such as, the soda package comes with a refillable plastic cup which is nice and eco friendly but the problem I am having is there is only about two soda machines accessible and most of the time one is closed your forced to go to the one at the pizza restaurant. Also, I would recommend longer hours for things such as food places etc. if you don't make it to dinner your stuck eating the same thing late night m, your two options are pizza or this small sandwich spot across from the pizza place thats all... on a cruise you expect there to be things like food places open for a much later time with much more options. Also, ice cream spots are very limited as well at close at 7pm so if you want some later on in the evening its not open. Now on to other things the ship itself is very nice and new we loved the ship. I do recommend more pools as it gets very packed on sea days. Staff all around has been amazing. Our house keeping lady Nancy is truly the kindest person ever!!! She always checks in with us and greets us at all times & helps us with anything we need she is amazing!!! Thank you Nancy! Your hard work is truly appreciated. For entertainment we saw the Greece show which was awesome! We also saw the Aqua show that was one awesome show as well very talented actors. Over all it was an amazing cruise with a few changes it would be the best cruise. I do recommend it. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We were supposed to sail to Cuba on the Majesty this same week. When the Cuba stop got canceled, we looked at options and found a great deal on a Grand Suite for this sailing. Since the GS for 7 nights cost less than $400 more pp than ... Read More
We were supposed to sail to Cuba on the Majesty this same week. When the Cuba stop got canceled, we looked at options and found a great deal on a Grand Suite for this sailing. Since the GS for 7 nights cost less than $400 more pp than the booking we had on the Majesty for 5 nights, we jumped on it. The ship is large. We certainly did not experience all that it has to offer. I did go to the fitness most mornings; it was very nice and I never had an issue finding a selection of equipment to use, even on sea days. We had the drink package and managed to try out most of the bars, at least once. My only "complaint" was the heavy pours. I had to specifically tell the bar tenders to put less alcohol in my drinks. They routinely put a double shot in all mixed drinks-a single shot is plenty for me! Others may find that a positive. We had breakfast in the Vitality Cafe twice, before working out. It was a very good, light breakfast. We also had lunch in the Park Cafe one day-very good, at Mini-Bites one afternoon-less good but not terrible and Sorenttos. The pizza was much better than expected. I really liked it, although I like most anything that i don't have to cook. We also went to the MDR for lunch one day. It was good, but it was very crowded and the atmosphere was hectic. We ate the other meals in the Coastal Kitchen. The food was fabulous. We ate breakfast there five mornings. The french toast and the waffles were excellent. We had lunch there twice and both times, it was really good. Dinners were excellent every night! We saw Grease-very good, The Fine Line-a little odd, but we enjoyed it and both ice shows. My favorite show was I-Skate, but I enjoyed them all. Other than that, we generally just sat on the deck or in the suite lounge and watched people and read. A big advantage of the suite lounge and deck is that we really got to know some of our fellow passengers, which I really enjoyed. With one or two exceptions, everyone was warm and friendly. The conceirges, Jeremias and Mohammed were fabulous, as was the CK manager, Ace and our waiter, Laurence. The pools were exceptionally crowded. We never really went near them, but could see the crowds. Other than that, we did not have any issue with crowds, perhaps because we only took the elevator once the entire week. We might have found the crowds more intrusive had we not had access to the suite areas. They were wonderfully serene. I had only two minor complaints: one the cruise director, Dennis, was somewhat offensive. The other was that they made me get off the ship when the week was over! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Disney and Celebrity cruiser goes on R/C, why? I wanted to see Coco Cay. They hit a grand slam home run. We wished the ship would just sail there and dock overnight. Already looking to book our next cruise to go back. That being said, ... Read More
Disney and Celebrity cruiser goes on R/C, why? I wanted to see Coco Cay. They hit a grand slam home run. We wished the ship would just sail there and dock overnight. Already looking to book our next cruise to go back. That being said, lets talk about the cruise. Cons: The 3 nt is a party run. No one was overly rowdy but into the drink. Food service was good but a little dis-jointed and forgetful Cabins did not benefit from the recent refit but were ok, fairly much on par. Music was way too loud as were the announcements and pool deck big screen. Main production show was awful. Pros: Main dining food was above average to the point where I wouldn't feel the need to pay for specialty dining. Public spaces were tasteful and well thought out. Drink package is worth it and I wouldn't go again without buying the key. Ice show was awesome, we went twice. Did I mention Coco Cay? Way above expectations esp. the food on the island. Better than Disney's. Best embarkation I've ever had. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We chose this sailing for a quick end of summer getaway. There were 3 of us sailing--me, my mother and my daughter (8 years old). Because we booked late, we could not get a triple cabin (no triple occupancy available in any category). ... Read More
We chose this sailing for a quick end of summer getaway. There were 3 of us sailing--me, my mother and my daughter (8 years old). Because we booked late, we could not get a triple cabin (no triple occupancy available in any category). We ended up booking 2 adjoining mini-suites on deck 9. Embarkation was the smoothest we ever experienced. After an hour and a half drive, we dropped our luggage in the garage at 10:25 am, parked and were on the ship by 10:45 (would have been on sooner if we didn't have to stop for a wristband for DD). The suite line checked us in with iPads and gave us a card saying already checked in. We then cleared security and headed straight for the ship. There did not appear to be long lines for those that had to stop for the regular check in process. We had lunch at Windjammer. They did a great job with the refurbishment--it never felt crowded. The food was very good as well. While we were there, we made reservations for My Time for each evening. After lunch we explored the ship until cabins were ready (promptly at 1:00). After getting settled, we explored a bit more and had the safety drill (we were lucky and had an indoor muster station). That evening, we were going to watch "Mary Poppins Returns" by the pool, but the pools were closed due to weather and it was hard to find seats where we wouldn't get wet. In the end DD went to Adventure Ocean and we went to the casino. Saturday was spent experiencing the ship. My mom and I had massages (she said hers was the best she'd ever had), DD did FlowRider, we went to the pool and did the water slides. That evening, after dinner, DD did the Sky Pad. Sunday was an awesome day at CoCo Cay. DD and I booked the water park. It's awesome! Because of long lines, they've started issuing tickets for return times for DareDevil's Peak. We got to the park around 8 and got tickets to return at 10 am. We spent all our time at the tower with the slides that didn't have mats/tubes, the pool with obstacle courses and the wave pool. Except for the walk up, DareDevil's Peak was awesome. We had an awesome time!! The food from Snack Shack was good as well. We met my mom around noon and took the tram over to the pool. After a swim (and drinks from the swim up bar), we went to the buffet lunch. The taco area, burgers, dogs and salads were really good. The pre-made sandwiches were hard (from the warmer). After some more water park time and a short beach visit, DD and I returned to the ship--no lines getting back onboard. CoCo Cay was amazing! I can't wait to see the complete finished island (the remaining parts open in December). We saw the ice show the final evening and it was the best ice show we've seen on RCCL. Overall - Staff (except one person working the bar by promenade cafe) was excellent! They were as good as the staff on Harmony. Cabin attendant (Benny) was very friendly and did a great job! We requested the same servers in the dining room as we had excellent service from Dennis and Wayan. My mom and I had the deluxe beverage package and it was even easier than when I previously had it on Allure (nothing to sign this time). DD had the refresh package. She was the only one who had issues getting her drinks--but only at one location--who repeatedly said her account was closed (even after I filled out paperwork for a limit on her account and ensuring it was open). We would definitely sail Mariner for a short cruise again!! We loved the ship and staff!! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We chose this cruise and the dates based on sports calendars and celebrations. We are a family of 6. Our kids are 21, 20, 18, and 16 years old in age. My oldest graduated from college in May and my 3rd graduated from high school in June. ... Read More
We chose this cruise and the dates based on sports calendars and celebrations. We are a family of 6. Our kids are 21, 20, 18, and 16 years old in age. My oldest graduated from college in May and my 3rd graduated from high school in June. We needed the cruise to be in the beginning of August because football starts on August 16th. So we were pretty tight with dates. This was our first cruise and we wanted to try it out so we thought a 3 day was perfect. We traveled with friends who had gone on 2 Disney cruises prior. I was very concerned that they would be unhappy but it was the opposite. They loved the cruise just as much as us. Our plan was to fly down the night before and then spend 2 nights at Disney after the cruise. We also needed to make this pretty economical so I had a budget of about 8,000. We do a bigger trip every 2 years. We have DVC points so Disney room was "free". We flew direct from Rochester, NY to MCO. We paid alittle bit more than if we had driven to Buffalo but we felt it was worth it to be 15 minutes away and not pay for parking. My oldest flew Frontier from Philadelphia as the flights were $49 and $82 ( with a bag returning). These flights were fine for him. Port transfers were something that I really researched for our family. I investigated renting a mini van, using Uber XL and finally went with Go Port Canaveral. It was the most economical. For $340 we spent the night in a suite at Hyatt Place Airport and they transported us to the port and back to the airport where we used Disney Magic Express to get to our hotel. On the morning of our cruise we were able to eat a good free breakfast and hang out a bit. Our pick up time was 11:45 and there were lots of people getting on cruises that day. The pick up was a bit disorganized and some people were very pushy. There was not a Go port employee there to divide up the passengers so my family was separated. Not a big deal at all but just a bit confusing. We were dropped off at the same time as the kids so no problem. We walked up and were on the boat by 1:15. It was very easy to embark and our rooms were ready so we were able to drop our bags and then head up to Windjammer. Our rooms were 2 interior rooms next to each other on the 10th floor in the back of the boat. Our friends were in 2 interior rooms on the 10th floor in the front of the boat. The rooms were tight but everything work out well. We did these rooms to save some money - total for both rooms with drink packages was $4, 400. I live with giants. My boys are 6'4" and 6'5". My husband is 6'10". My oldest son is a string bean but my husband and younger son as big guys. They had no problem with the room or shower. My oldest slept on the pull down bunk. The girls room was tight as my girls change outfits like 10 times a day but it all worked out. I would do this again. The only drawback was never really knowing the time without checking a watch. I had brought night lamps but we did not need them. We just left the bathroom light on and closed the door. Dining we enjoyed the Windjammer for breakfast and lunch each day and two late nights. We were always able to find a table for all 11 of us. The breakfast was probably our least favorite meal but we did not go hungry. Lunch was great. We had early dining in the Main Dining room. Loved it. The wait staff was very attentive and they seemed to enjoy our two tables. We had a table of the under 21s and an adult table. They were very sweet to the kids and brought them multiple appetizers, entrees and desserts each night. At our table they brought us whatever we wanted. They even gave my son to go desserts. The food was great especially since I wasn't cooking it. My least favorite part of the day is the dreaded - "Mom, what's for dinner?" question. We really enjoyed the pizza at Cafe Promenade. It was staple every night. My girls had the refreshment package so they enjoyed non alcoholic drinks and coffees. My husband and oldest son had the drinking package. They greatly enjoyed all the drinks and the bar tenders that knew their names. My son and I had the soda package. I did not really need any package as I drink water and unsweetened ice tea. We attended the ice show, 70's dance party, Dreams show and some of us went to the late night Comedian. We enjoyed everything we attended. The cruise director Marcello was a hustler. He was great. The boys did the flow rider, the water slides. We all enjoyed the pools and mini golf. We did not get to some of the activities but we were never bored. In fact I wanted to crack open my book but that never happened. The kids played the quarter game in the casino for over an hour with $5 in quarters. At Nassau we got off for 2.5 hours. We walked to Junkaroo beach where the kids put their feet in the water and ordered drinks legally. They even served the 16 year old. In their defense he is huge and does not look 16. In fact were we were disembarking he got snagged for being in the Casino. The security lady made a comment about him being in the casino and she thought he was at least 18. We all agree that if we come back we will just stay on the boat. Coco Cay was incredible. We did not pay for any extra activities and greatly enjoyed the beaches and pool and food. I brought googles and we swam around looking at the wild life. Enjoyed the food and went for dip in the pool. We all said we would come back just for this place. The kids stated this was the best trip ever and are already planning one in 2 years. My oldest is trying to get his buddies to come on one with him, The only drawback was that we were not able to communicate with the kids since we did not get the internet. We enjoyed being unplugged for 3 days but I would have liked to have a text feature. The kids were able to find us by checking the app and seeing were the drinks had been purchased. Disembarkation was easy and very quick with the facial recognition. We got a bus back to the airport by 8:30 and then transferred to Magic Express for our 2 days at Bay Lake Tower. I was nervous wreck about this trip since I had no prior experience but we are already planning for one in 2 years when the next 2 kids graduate from high school and college. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
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