10 San Juan to Transatlantic Royal Caribbean Adventure of the Seas Cruise Reviews

Boarding- we made our own arrangements to fly to San Juan and stayed overnight in the Embassy Suites and Casino. Cheap and cheerful is how I would describe it. However by making our own arrangements we saved £400 per person against RCIs ... Read More
Boarding- we made our own arrangements to fly to San Juan and stayed overnight in the Embassy Suites and Casino. Cheap and cheerful is how I would describe it. However by making our own arrangements we saved £400 per person against RCIs price. We took a taxi to the port and arrived about 11.15. We checked in and at 11.30 they started boarding. Boy was this slow. The process of taking a photo as you get onboard for your seapass was soooo slow. Why cant they do this at check in? Room- we had a Superior Balcony Cabin on deck 9 Aft. A good location for the Centrum lifts, Main Dining Roon, Windjammer etc. The cabin was spotless. OK the decor was a little dated but it was well cared for. Our cabin steward was lovely and inobtrusive. The TV channel choice was good although the pay per view movies are very expensive. We had no noise or vibration issues in 9646. We ate in the Main Dining Roon on 12 nights out of 14 using Mytime dining. This worked reasonably well. Initially our party of 4 were put on a table for six which we had to ourselves. The next two nights on a table for 8 for ourselves. We didnt like that set up so the next day when calling to reserve a table I asked specifically for a table for 4. The lady said they were all booked up and we needed to eat at different times to get one with our allocated waiter. I then asked does he have tables for 4 and she said no, not on his section, so we asked to move. This was a shame. We liked our waiters but why put a party of four on his section when he doesnt physically have tables for four? After that things worked fine. We got a table for four on another section and had good service. However on the last night despite booking for 7.30 we were not seated till 8.20. This was very poor and as a result we missed the late show. Clearly they had not planned their reservations properly that evening. As for the food, this ranged from terrible to good. There were some truly awful dishes. One chocolate tarte became a wet, bland concoction. A coq au vin was a grisly flavorless mess and the always available steak is like a cut from a joint of roast beef and even when prepared medium rare was dry and had the texture of sawdust. Fish choices were generally overcooked however one of us had salmon for a few nights which was great however on one night arrived raw in the centre. It was rejected and the same piece came back, microwaved. This was wet and smelled awful and was again rejected. The Head Waiter came, took a sniff and also agreed it was awful. Anything on the Entrees consisting of beef or lamb were very good. One of our party was vegetarian and the options were ok, but always so small. Why should a vegetarian be short changed? The vegetarian sweet and sour chicken had just two small pieces of faux chicken. The vegetables served with the Entrees were repetitive and bland. Always mash potato , carrot and brocolli. For the first week the carrots and brocolli were rock hard and inedible however after a week each room had a feedback form in it and we, and presumably others, mentioned the veg. After that it came nicely cooked apart from wet and soggy asparagus. It would be nice if veg accompliments had some flair, and taste. One night potato dauphinoise appeared but this was also raw and inedible. What about some roast potatoes or boiled potatoes or some flavour to the veg? Service was great though. Windjammer breakfast was spot on. Huge choice, sometimes a little cold, and great service. Lunch was good but in the heat of the caribbean we felt there were a few too many hot, heavy dishes. The burgers though are excellent. We went to lunch in the main dining room twice and loved the salads they make to order. We had breakfast once in the MDR and were unimpressed as they got the order wrong and our eggs benedict was stone cold on arrival. We went to Portofinos one night. Food and service were excellent. The setting was bland and boring and less desirable than the main dining room and felt like a canteen. The cruise director was Clo O'Connor or HelloClo as she is known. Cannot fault her. Superb. Totally natural, funny and pleasant. The theatre shows were very variable. Best were the East Coast Boys with their Jersey Boys set. The Headliner shows were poor. The Dance show was 90% latin and to us unprofessional. The ice show was superb as was the quest, hosted by HelloClo. AJs band on deck 4 each evening were excellent but the piano player in the Schooner Bar was terrible and ruined everything he touched, strangled even. The daily program of events was full and varied. We had the free Premium Drinks package which was excellent. A great choice of beer, spirits and cocktails. House wines are included but only one of each red, white, blush and sparkling. The white, a chardonney, was truly awful. As we drink white wine only with dinner this proved far too heavy to accompany any food. We complained, as many apparently did, but as they have bought the wine in bulk they are not going to change this anytime soon. We cant understand that you can have any beer, spirit or cocktail but just one choice of white wine. If you are a white wine drinker and dont like heavy chardonneys then the drinks package might not be for you. The ship was excellent. Its 11 years old and heading for a refurb next year but it was spotless and well maintained. The staff were lovely and all very friendly. We've previously been on Independance, and Adventure is pretty similar but a bit smaller in all respects. All cabins were full but with only a few kids onboard, light of the maximum capacity so never felt overcrowded. We did 4 caribbean islands plus the azores. We had a great crossing, calm with great weather. Disembarkation at Southampton was smooth but very early! Self disembarkation was 6.15 to 7.00 and all had to be off by 9.30. This seems really early and doesnt make for a relaxing end to the cruise. Overall, we enjoyed it. The cruise experience was smooth and polished, the food could be better and had worsened since our experience on RCI a few years back, the entertainment was not great, the ship is lovely so are the staff, and finally the house white wine is TERRIBLE! RCI, listen to this, sort out your wine! We would sail again on Adventure, but skip the shows and eat more dinners in windjammer rather than the MDR.. Read Less
Sail Date April 2013
Adventure of the Seas Review: Transatlantic San Juan, Puerto Rico (21 April 2013) to Southampton (5 May 2013) We live in New Orleans. We drove to Houston to visit our daughter and family and to leave our dog while we went on the ... Read More
Adventure of the Seas Review: Transatlantic San Juan, Puerto Rico (21 April 2013) to Southampton (5 May 2013) We live in New Orleans. We drove to Houston to visit our daughter and family and to leave our dog while we went on the cruise. We flew from Houston Hobby to Orlando. The Air Trans flight was about 80% empty and was quite enjoyable. I was surprised to have a luggage charge since Southwest has taken over Air Trans. The flight to San Juan, Southwest, was absolutely full. Fortunately we found a taxi quickly and went to the ship in about twenty minutes. We were fortunate to travel with a good friend of over 58 years. Embarkation was very efficient. San Juan, Puerto Rico (21 April 2013) to Southampton (5 May 2013) Adventure of the Seas debuted in 2001 as the third in the series of Royal Caribbean's game-changing Voyager-class vessels. Though Adventure has been bypassed in size and amenities by the Freedom-class trio and the massive Oasis-class twins, it's still among the world's larger ships, with a range of the most uncruise-like venues at sea, such as a rollerblading track, ice-skating rink and rock-climbing wall -- not to mention the bustling hub that is Royal Promenade, a shopping mall-esque boulevard of retail stores, bars and cafes. But, the ship is large. There are only two banks of elevators toward the center. Anywhere you want to go is always on the other end of the ship. Our room was one room from the very back of the ship. The theatre was in the forward part of the ship. Ambience: variety is key. The Lyric Theater has a nifty Art Nouveau interior; the solarium pool evokes the glories of Venice; and the Casino Royal centers on a Hollywood theme. The Duck and Dog Pub is perfect for Anglophiles, Champagne Bar is elegant and Jester's Nightclub resonates with a Gothic vibe. This ship is well designed -- with lots of very distinctly themed rooms and with even the larger venues like the Lyric Theater and Imperial Lounge feeling unexpectedly cozy -- that Adventure of the Seas has the potential to spoil first-timers and even seduce some of us crusty ol' cruise traditionalists. Adventure of the Seas Fellow Passengers Passengers range in age from 25 - 85-plus with a number of families onboard. Adventure of the Seas is a great option for couples and families -- particularly multi-generational groups. Our transatlantic cruise had 1591 passengers with United Kingdom passports and a little over 500 from the U. S. Speaking of a mix of people, one of the more interesting facets of passenger demographics on this ship is international diversity (the daily Compass is printed in six languages) and public announcements are made in three languages. Adventure of the Seas Dress Code Dress is quite casual as befits the Caribbean (temperatue~80F); but continued into the North Atlantic (temperature about 60F). There were three formal nights where most men wore tuxedoes or suits and women wore dressy (but not long) cocktail gowns. Otherwise, people dressed in "smart casual" which varied from country club wear to dressy. Adventure of the Seas Gratuity Royal Caribbean passengers are charged $12 per person, per day ($14.25 for suite guests). Gratuities can be prepaid or will be added on a daily basis to passengers' SeaPass accounts during the cruise. Passengers can modify or remove gratuities by visiting the guest services desk while onboard. A 15 percent gratuity is automatically added to bar tabs. Our wait staff was marvelous and we gave both additional money. Likewise our room steward was outstanding and we rewarded her with extra cash. Adventure of the Piano Bar We encountered new phenomena in the designated "Piano Bar." It is not unusual for the player to have a "tips" on top of the piano. On this cruise, the piano player had a price list for the performance of favorites. For example, Billy Joel's Piano Man was $15. We don't know if the take was shared with the RCI management. Adventure of the Seas Cabins Out of 1,557 staterooms, 939 of these have an ocean view (765 have balconies). A hallmark on this ship's class is the Royal Promenade-facing staterooms that overlook that engaging thoroughfare -- these are a step up from the usual inside cabin. A warning however: Privacy is at a premium with these cabins because they do not have privacy glass windows. Also, due to the late-night reveling that goes on, all but night owls may find them noisy. The Royal Promenade is a great addition to the cruise ship. However, when the shops put counters into the middle of the deck, there is instant congestion. A similar congestion results when there is entertainment on the deck or on the bridge, There are virtually no seats from which to watch the entertainment. Our inside cabin was about 150 square feet. All staterooms come with a twin-that-can-be-converted-to-queen bed, private bathroom, phone, closed-circuit television, mini bar and hair dryers. They're decorated in festive Caribbean-esque colors, from mist-green to buoyant oranges and yellows. We had to ask our room steward for ICE and toiletries. There were no stationary or postcards in the room. The Adventure of the Seas features an advanced interactive, closed Circuit TV system in cabins that allows for guests to order shore tours and check on the status of their onboard account. The Express Checkout worked very well. Movies (from old to new), FOX, CNN, TNT, TCM, ESPN, Discovery, and children's channels are available. Also available are in-house replays of enrichment lecture, excursion descriptions, and a Cruise Director's reporting channel. Activities of the day are also played on the "Cruise Channel." First run movies are available on TV at $12.95. There may not be a flat screen television in your stateroom. Channels that you might expect to receive by satellite may also vary in availability. Adventure of the Seas Dining / Cuisine Mouthwatering descriptions on the menus notwithstanding, you probably won't hear people raving about the food. Particularly annoying are misleading descriptions of food items, a notable one being a dessert called "chocolate fondue" which evokes a plate of fruit and marshmallows for dipping into a bowl of hot, molten cocoa-laden chocolate. What arrives is a refrigerated bowl of congealed white pudding with a few berries stuck to the bottom. The immediate response is, "Huh? What is this?" It turns out the description says "white chocolate" and as for the word "fondue," - well, it just isn't one. These ships have changed their dining room menus, limiting the number of courses. While most ships list appetizers, soups, salads and entrees separately, there are now but two categories, starters and entrees, with a single type of salad offered as a separate option. The result is people getting different items (soup, salad, appetizers) all at different times. Entrees will all arrive at once, however. Beef is the best bet - fish is unpredictable. In addition to entree selections that vary nightly, the menu always offers salmon, chicken breast, steak or pasta. These are often the best choices on the menu. Particularly problematic is the bar and wine service. Wine service was left to the assistant waiter. There are no dedicated sommeliers so don't be surprised if your white wine arrives at room temperature and no ice bucket if you order a bottle. Wine by the glass is three fingers in the smallest wine glass made, and costs over $7.00. Royal Caribbean does offer to keep unfinished bottles for their guests. We purchased a 7 bottle package for about $250 (about ten red or white wines at ~$36 each). The wine we liked most was a Lafitte-Rothschild Chardonnay on the menu for $46. Specialty coffees like espresso or cappuccino with dessert, with or without liquor, have to be ordered from bar service which can be tortuously slow. Try to order these well ahead of dessert or you will likely be served after your meal is finished. From the meals in the dining room to the buffet choices in the Windjammer Cafe to the options available at the 24-hour Cafe Promenade, the food is consistent and prepared with a view to cost at all times. There was a great deal of chiffon and custard in the deserts. There was no outstanding entrees or deserts on the menus. The Vivaldi, Strauss, and Mozart Main Dining Rooms: Respectively located on Decks 3, 4, and 5, The Vivaldi, Strauss, and Mozart main dining rooms on Adventure of the Seas are a spectacle with 3 levels of tables. Classically appointed decor brings together vintage golden columns and chandeliers in celebration of these master composers You may choose between My Time Dining, early dinner (6:00 PM), or late dinner (8:30 PM) seating when you make your cruise reservation. With My Time Dining, you are welcome to show-up at any time to be seated for dinner. However, it is advised that you inform the Maitre D' of your preferred dining time earlier in the day, or, set a consistent time with the Maitre D' on the first day of your cruise. If you show-up and you have not set a dining time previously, you may have a lengthy wait until a table becomes available. (Note: Those choosing My Time Dining must pre-pay gratuities -- Royal Caribbean does not automatically add gratuities to your final bill if you've elected set-seating.) Cuisine is generally well prepared, if not innovative; Royal Caribbean doesn't pretend to be a gourmet-dining cruise line. Each menu includes healthy fare options, vegetarian dishes (at least one, like vegetarian chili, but sometimes there's an Indian vegetarian dish in addition) and a standard in-case-nothing-else-appeals selection of entrees (rigatoni with marinara sauce, Atlantic cod, chicken breast and black angus top sirloin). We were on the RCI Mariner last November and the choices on the Adventure seem a little bit less. Escargot was offered as an appetizer for the first ten days of the trip, but eventually ran out. The daily dinner menu featured a small box on the lower right side that offered three additional choices: 1. Lobster at about $30. 2. Surf and Turf at about $20. 3. Filet Mignon at about $25. We did not try any of the options. We were fortunate in our table mates: a couple from Southampton and a couple from Houston. Breakfast and lunch are open-seating, though you shouldn't take that to mean that you can always snare a quiet little table for two. We always ask for a large table and found that a very efficient way to meet people. The Windjammer, Adventure of the Seas' buffet restaurant, is open for breakfast and lunch, and it features steam-table cuisine. Kudos must be given, however, to the egg station at breakfast (where you can request a variety of prepared-to-order dishes) and the carving station at lunch. Baked goods are consistently excellent. Vegetarians will do much better in the main dining room at lunch. The Windjammer is also open for dinner and is an option for those nights when flexibility is preferred. The buffet features the same items as are on the main dining room menu. Specialty eateries include Johnny Rockets, the 1950s-style burger diner; passengers can indulge in burgers, hot dogs, chili fries, apple pie and onion rings. Royal Caribbean has instituted a $4.95 per-person cover charge for both in-restaurant and take-out dining (and beverages are additionally charged, specifically malts at $4.95). On the Royal Promenade, the Cafe Promenade (FREE) features light fare at all times (pastries in the morning and always, sandwiches at night); try the pizza, it's excellent. The coffee is the best on the ship. The cookies were also excellent. Portofino is the Adventure of the Seas specialty restaurant. The Italian-themed restaurant, which charges a $20 per-person cover (specialty beverages, beer, wine and soda are charged separately), offers a leisurely multi-course meal. The menu did not change at all on our trip, but that didn't seem to matter to a number of folks who were back for repeat dinners. Note, however, that you need to make reservations as early as possible in your cruise or you may miss the restaurant. Royal Caribbean's room service options are available around the clock via 24-hour menus that offer a range of snacks and sandwiches. At breakfast, Continental dishes, along with a handful of egg entrees, are available both in cabins and suites. Items off the main dining room menu can be ordered at dinner. There is no charge for room service between 5 a.m. and midnight (though a two to five dollar tip is recommended); orders made between midnight and 5 a.m. incur a $3.95 fee. We had breakfast, primarily tea or coffee, every morning. Adventure of the Seas Entertainment It can be very hard to relax on Adventure of the Seas -- even on sea days -- because of the head-spinning array of activities that run from dawn to dusk and beyond! There is a ubiquitous loudness in almost every public area on the ship. The ship's entertainment staff offers an intriguing blend of options, and everyone, from the most traditional passenger to the completely contemporary traveler, will find something to do. DAY 1, Sunday, April 21, 2013. Rodney Johnson, Comedian. *** DAY 2, Monday, April 22, 2013. Tribute to the Temptatations, Group singing. *** DAY 3, Tuesday, April 23, 2013. RCI singers and Dancers, Invitation to Dance. **** DAY 4, Wednesday, April 24, 2013. Martin Lewis, Magician. *** DAY 5, Thursday, April 25, 2013. Ollie Spencer, Comedian. DID NOT ATTEND. DAY 6, Friday, April 26, 2013. Jayne Curry, Singer. **** DAY 7, Saturday, April 27, 2013. Cool Art, Hot Ice, Ice Show. DID NOT ATTEND. DAY 8, Sunday, April 28, 2013. Ash & Mike, Pianist and Singer. **** DAY 9, Monday, April 29, 2013. Christopher Caress, Hypnotist. *** DAY 10, Tuesday, April 30, 2013. Cool Art, Hot Ice, Ice Show. DID NOT ATTEND. DAY 11, Wednesday, May 1, 2013. . RCI singers and Dancers, Can't Stop the Rock. **** DAY 12, Thursday, May 2, 2013. East Coast Boys (Tribute to Franky Valli and the Four Seasons). **** DAY 13, Friday, May 3, 2013. RCI singers and Dancers, Las Vegas. **** DAY 14, Saturday, May 4, 2013. Beastro, Magician. ** NOTE: when the ice show was on, there was no major event in the Lyric Theatre. During the day, you'll find plenty of traditional cruise activities, such as trivia, bingo, dance lessons (line-dancing), rock-climbing wall competitions, horse racing, art auctions, lectures (on everything from healthy eating to gemstones), Mr. Sexy Legs contests, bridge playing, art and craft workshops and films in the tiny cinema. Poolside, throughout the day, a live band plays a blend of Caribbean and American songs. Throughout the day and night, there's often some type of performance along the Promenade, either a parade or jugglers and comics who wander through the giant mall-like space and perform with the crowd. There is often a parade at 5 PM with costumed performers. At night, there are two kinds of entertainment -- the traditional-style cruise productions -- singing and dancing shows in The Lyric, and goofy passenger-inspired episodes like "Love and Marriage" (a tired idea, perhaps, but still, on our cruise it was screamingly funny. This was the first time we saw a gay couple as contestants). Bar venues, of course, offer a variety of musical performances that are aimed to please just about everybody at any time -- classical guitar, country/western, jazz. Adventure of the Seas TRIVIA Trivia is treated as a separate subject because the Cruise Director and staff made a number of errors. First, the Cruise Director, Clodagh O'Connor or "Hello Clo", as she is known was outstanding. However, there were some problems with trivia. The first four days were Caribbean island stops. Trivia was held in the Schooner Lounge and the small room was adequate. However, once sea days started, the lounge was terribly overcrowded. The cruise director staff person said nothing could be done. It was almost impossible not to notice that JESTER"S, a night club, a few steps from the Schooner was empty. It could easily have held the crowd for trivia. A similar situation obtained when trivia was scheduled for the DUCK & DOG PUB. Too, too many people. Once it was moved into the Imperial Lounge which held the crowd easily. On another day an ART Preview was in the Imperial Lounge and trivia was moved to the DUCK & DOG PUB with loud, complaining overcrowding. It is hard to believe that the size of the crowd for trivia could not be estimated correctly and accommodated. A new kind of trivia was introduced on the ship. It was trivia player trivia. That is, trivia players submitted the questions and answers for the quiz. The fatal flaw is that the answers could not be objectively verified. For example -- WHAT ARE THE FOUR MOONS OF JUPITER? Unfortunately, Jupiter has over sixty moons; so the question is nonsense. The question could have been salvaged if the adjective Gallilean had been inserted into the question or if the question asked for the largest four moons. Again, the trivia leader was powerless to change the question or answer. Similarly, Buenos Aires was proclaimed as the most populous city south of the equator. In the real world Sao Paolo is the largest. Adventure of the Seas Excursion Desk & Guest Relations Adventure of the Seas Information (or lack therof) One would think that service from either area would be of benefit to the guests of the ship. However, it would appear that the staff has severe "tunnel vision" or is commanded to have "tunnel vision." Questions like: Where does the ship dock? How far is it from the terminal to town? Is there a ferry from St. Lucia to Martinique? How much is a taxi tour per hour? Such questions had no answers unless the answer was a ship service for charge. I. E., question about ship sponsored excursions could be answered; but, non-ship activities could not be discussed. Adventure of the Seas Public Rooms Feel like an Asian atmosphere? Head for the Imperial Lounge. In the mood for Gothic? Try Jester's nightclub. Feel the urge for a clubby, elegant salon? With or without the cigar smokers, the Connoisseur's Cigar Club is a peaceful hideaway. Most of the major indoor venues are located off or along the Royal Promenade, which tends to really come alive at night. There you'll find shops (the usual cruise-style boutiques that sell logo items, duty-free liquor, perfume and cruise wear) and bars like the Duck & Dog British style pub (though many of its draught beer choices are puzzlingly non-Brit), the Gravity Sports Bar (which seemed empty most of the time) and the somewhat-elegant-but-mostly-bland Champagne Bar. However, the highlight is the 24-hour Cafe at the Promenade, which is a great place to snack and people watch. Off the main promenade, in various directions, are the Imperial Lounge (the ship's secondary theater with entertainment ranging from line-dancing classes to cooking workshops) and the Connoisseur Club (a very elegant, cozy cigar bar). Connected to the Promenade, via various stairways, are additional entertainment arenas, including Casino Royale, the Schooner Bar, the Aquarium Bar (with its huge fish tanks), the Lyric Theatre and the Jester's nightclub. Tucked away on Deck 2 -- easy to miss -- are the ship's intimate cinema and conference facilities. Each of the performance venues -- Lyric Theatre and Imperial Lounge, for instance -- has its own bar as does Studio B, the phenomenal ice-skating rink/show lounge on deck three. Overlooking the Royal Promenade is the Library, with an small collection of books (about half English and half foreign) and comfortable leather chairs. . The ship has an Internet cafe and cabins are wired for Internet usage. The cost for Internet access, via Wi-Fi or at a work station, is 55 cents a minute, or you can buy packages of 60, 90 or 150 minutes for $28, $38 or $55, respectively. The Photo Gallery on Deck 3 is the place to giggle over silly photos of your shipmates and buy your own for outlandish prices ($19.95 for 8x10's, often a smaller photo of you surrounded by generic ship images). Blue Moon Jazz Club, the name on this ship for the traditionally styled Viking Crown Lounge, has the usual fabulous vistas. On the same deck you'll find Seven Hearts Card Room, 19th Hole Golf Bar and Cloud Nine. Adventure of the Seas has a nondenominational chapel called the Skylight Wedding Chapel. Adventure of the Seas Spa & Fitness Even on sea days, everyone has plenty of room around the two pools -- an admirable feat. One interesting feature about the hot tubs is some are double-sized, which again makes room for more folks. Tiered decks surround an outdoor theater, where everything from "men's sexiest legs" contests to live dance band performances take place. There are two bars by the main pool. The Solarium pool and whirlpools are situated in a quieter, more laid-back setting; the area is adults-only. All of the major (outdoor) athletic activities -- the nine-hole miniature golf course, rollerblading rink, full-size basketball/volleyball court, golf simulator and rock-climbing wall -- are tucked into a "sports center" that lies aft. The pocket-sized ice skating rink is tucked well below, into the bowels of the ship. Note that some of the more specialized activities -- rock climbing, rollerblading and ice skating -- are offered only at specified times so check your daily Compass for available hours. The ship's jogging/power walking track winds around the main pool area. One nice touch: Royal Caribbean does not layer on a lot of extra fees for equipment "rental" -- there is no charge for using everything from ice skates (you can choose between hockey and figure models) to rollerblades. The 15,000-square-foot spa -- the usual Steiner, Ltd., production -- spans two levels. One houses the quite ample fitness facility (no overcrowding here) and a workout room where classes are offered. Upstairs in the spa and salon facility, a wide range of treatment programs are offered, such as facials, massages, manicures and hair-styling. A couple of caveats: The prices for treatments have risen to breathtaking levels, with a basic 50-minute massage now costing $119 or more. (The industry average is $99.) A manicure starts from $29, a pedicure from $45. The spa did offer "discounts" on port-of-call days (and as the cruise wound down), but that just brought the prices down to industry-normal levels. In addition, treatment employees will engage, way too aggressively, in the much-loathed "Steiner Product Pitch" at the end of your appointment. The products are also over-priced. Just say no. DESTINATIONS: DAY 2, Monday, April 22, 2013. ST. THOMAS, We talk a little walk around the dock.. We have been to St. Thomas quite a few times and did not need to take any tours. *** DAY 3, Tuesday, April 23, 2013. ST. MAARTEN & ST. MARTIN. We took a ship Excursion for the bargain price of $29 each and saw most of both Dutch and French parts of the island. It was indeed a true bargain for a ship's excursion at $29. It was very enjoyable. ***** DAY 4, Wednesday, April 24, 2013. ST. LUCIA. We engaged a knowledgeable cab driver and toured at least half the island for. $20 each.***** DAY 5, Thursday, April 25, 2013. ST. KITTS. Took a nice taxi tour for $20 per person ($5 for a ferry and $15 for a taxi). ****.. DAY 11, Wednesday, May 1, 2013. . PONTA DELGADO. AZORES, PORTUGAL. Again we had a very pleasant taxi tour for $20 each.. **** DAY 15, Sunday, May , 2013. SOUTHHAMPTON. Adventure offered interesting tours to STONEHENGE and/or WINDSOR on the way to the airport. We had a private sedan which took us from the ship to Heathrow. The American Airlines flight to DFW was the nicest we have had in a long time. Very smooth.***** The Adventure of the Seas has a variety of events and lively entertainment for you to participate throughout the ship. There is also Loud Music virtually everywhere. The Atrium allows broadcast of whatever is playing on Deck 4 to invade the entire ship center. Adventure was the noisiest ship we have been on since several Carnival trips. But, if you are looking somewhere to get away and enjoy some quiet time onboard the Adventure of the Seas, try the Champagne Bar, the Viking Crown Lounge, the Solarium, the Library, and the Skylight Chapel. Usually before 9:00 AM, most areas (save the pool areas) are not crowded. Also, the ship pretty much empties when it is in port. If you are looking for quiet onboard the ship, port days are a great time to be aboard the Adventure of the Seas. Quiet places onboard the Adventure of the Seas: - Champagne Bar (Deck 5) - Solarium (Deck 11) - Library (Deck 7) - Viking Crown Lounge (Deck 14) - Skylight Chapel (Deck 15) Adventure of the Seas VALUE There are a lot of hidden extras, for example, Starbuck's, Ben & Jerrys, Curry Demonstration, ships tours, mystery dinner, etc all with an extra cost. While expecting to pay extra for the Specialty apparent that RCI has adopted the airlines approach to pricing. You pay for the cruise but there are restaurants and Theme nights some of the extra costs are unacceptable. Read Less
Sail Date April 2013
This was only our second cruise and first trans Atlantic crossing. As it was our Anniversary and my wife's birthday decided for this 14 night cruise so we could spend some romantic time together. Prior to the cruise jumped into the ... Read More
This was only our second cruise and first trans Atlantic crossing. As it was our Anniversary and my wife's birthday decided for this 14 night cruise so we could spend some romantic time together. Prior to the cruise jumped into the Cruise Critic forum board and really glad we did meet some great people and shared some great times. Embarkation. Made our own way to the cruise port in San Juan about 12 noon had to man handle our own cases to the porters. Check in was better than expected arrived on board in 42 mins and 30 sec ( sad I know but set the stop watch on my phone ). Cabin: 7560 had balcony on the Port side. Room spotless but showing the signs of wear ie rust around balcony door, scuffs and scrapes, shower screen had six inch crack and sheets although clean had been repaired. Our cabin steward was superb and always smiling. Dinning: We had opted to dine early on a table of ten. First night arrived to find we were the only one's there the wait staff we pleasant BUT we pushing the BOTTLES of wine even though we were on a drinks package with free house wine by the glass. We were latter joined by a family with two small children one of which screamed for over 30 mins. We latter approached the Maitre De and asked for a move only to be told that the family weren't on his list for the table just another couple. Therefor a table of ten was for four. The following night we decided to try the Winjammer and so glad that we did. The assistant waiter Leonardo was a dream couldn't do enough for us never pushy but always around. The food was good ( not a good as on the Princess Cruise ) with plenty of choice. We ate at the Specialty restaurant Portafino's twice during the cruise and enjoyed the food on both occasions. The best meal of the cruise was at the Cruise Critic Luncheon on the next to the last day really top notch and great service. Have heard since some of those attended were not Cruise Critic members but snook in by the Matrede. Entertainment: On the whole was okay. The Ice Show superb but only one show in the 14 nights. The temptations tribute group great. The productions shows were good but just good. The Cruise directer Hello Clo was always around and entertaining. We attended the CSI enhancement lecture by Dr Hal which we found enthralling and very interesting. Bars: Amazed at the number of bars available and being on a free drinks package made visits to most during the trip. Special mention to Illian and Keven at the Schooner Bar this guys were superb and could be earning a fortune in a trendy mainland bar. Summary: It became apparent that RCI are adopting the Ryan Air approach ie you pay for the cruise but there are a lot of hidden extras ie Starbuck's, Ben & Jerrys, Curry Demonstration, ships tours, etc etc all with an extra cost. Whilst expecting to pay extra for the Specialty restaurants and Theme nights some of the extra costs were unacceptable. In conclusion: We enjoyed the cruise as a whole, the first four nights and island visits were great. The sea days dragged and the entertainment offered was of a holiday camp order. The all inclusive drinks package was a very welcome bonus and in our opinion not abused by those on it. We didn't see a single drunk. However we did notice a large number of people coughing and sneezing towards the end of the cruise and I came away with a severe chest infection! Read Less
Sail Date April 2013
This was our 2nd Transatlantic as we enjoyed the 1st one so much. This time we booked Adventure it visited islands on both that we had not visited before. We booked a flight inclusive deal. The flight to San Juan via Atlanta was long ... Read More
This was our 2nd Transatlantic as we enjoyed the 1st one so much. This time we booked Adventure it visited islands on both that we had not visited before. We booked a flight inclusive deal. The flight to San Juan via Atlanta was long but went without a hitch. We were delayed getting to the hotel as the transfer bus was an hour late picking us up. We had one night in the Caribe Hilton which was very nice. Boarding went well. As RCI picked up our bags from the hotel and sent them directly to the ship we didn't see them again until they arrived in our cabin. From arrival at the Quay side we were on board in about 15 - 20 minutes. We had a balcony on Deck 7. Our balcony was little larger than average due to the location of the cabin on the "hump" of the ship. We were looked after by Grace who kept the room spotless and always wore a smile. The ship was full and had the most diverse range of nationalities aboard. Mainly American, Canadian, Puerto Rican , German and British. This bought with it a great atmosphere. You could go and do a pub quiz, listen to the Latin bands or a pianist etc etc. We had room service breakfast every day except two. This helped keep the pounds off as when we did go to the Windjammer I went a little overboard. The breakfast arrived on time every day and was always right. We decided to go for "My time" dining. On the 1st night we were advised to book a dining time for the rest of the cruise as we had requested a table for 2. Only very early or very late slots were left. Apparently you can now chose My Time and then request a table size and time slot before boarding. This kind of defeats the object in my opinion as it is then "Their Time" dining however it worked out well. We opted to eat at 6.15 and for the rest of the cruise arrived for dinner between 6.00 and 7.00. We always sat on the same table and kept our excellent waiting staff Osario and Merry, our drinks waiter Clyde was also very good. We ate in the MDR on every night except two. We ate once in Johnny Rockets which was good fun and once in Portofinos for the Murder Mystery dinner. The Fillet Mignon was absolutely amazing. Why can't I find steak that good back at home? Abel, the cruise director was the best we've had on any cruise. To be honest he is the only one we've ever remembered so he must have done something right. He was great in dealing with the very multi-national clientèle as he spoke four languages fluently. The stage productions were excellent and got standing ovations at each show we saw and as always the Ice show was outstanding. There was always plenty going on around the ship on the seas days and when the sea got a little choppy on the east side of the Atlantic they moved some of the music and party events due to happen around the pools on to the Royal Promenade. We didn't do any RCI excursions as they wereexpensive. We did a tour of St Marteen with a local company called Bernard Tours which was very good. In St Thomas we walked the 20 minutes or so into town, had a look around the markets and shopping streets before heading back to the ship. We hired cars in Tenerife and Lanzarote to do our own thing and walked in to Funchal and had a look around as we had been before we were back on the ship in time for lunch. This was the only way to get a sunbed in the Solarium as they were normally all gone bay 8.30 on the sea days. Transfers and flights back to the UK from Malaga went with a hitch. It is difficult to find any thing to be negative about on this cruise the staff and fellow passengers made this possibly the best cruise we have ever been on. Read Less
Sail Date April 2012
We travelled Malaga/Madrid/Miami/San Juan to join Adventure of the Seas. The flight from Madrid on Iberia was delayed 1 hour so we missed our connection in Miami. On arrival we were met American Airlines staff who had rebooked us on a ... Read More
We travelled Malaga/Madrid/Miami/San Juan to join Adventure of the Seas. The flight from Madrid on Iberia was delayed 1 hour so we missed our connection in Miami. On arrival we were met American Airlines staff who had rebooked us on a later flight, however the transit at Miami was appalling, it took a full 2 hours to clear immigration, collect baggage, clear customs, hand the luggage on to American Airlines, go through security and get to the gate just in time to hear our name being called for the flight as it had already boarded. A totally stressful experience. Anyway enough of that After 2 nights in San Juan we boarded Adventure of the Seas, we arrived at the port at 1100 and waited in line 15 minutes to drop of baggage then another 15 minute to check in and followed by a 30 minute wait we boarded at 1200. This was our 4th time on AOS and she is in really good condition, we saw no signs of wear and tear and there were staff constantly cleaning. Our balcony cabin was ready promptly at 1330 and was clean and comfortable, and well cared for our throughout the 13 night Cruise by Cirrus our stateroom attendant. We were allocated a very nice table in the Dining Room next to the window and our table companions were good company. Our Waiters Salem and Jesus worked hard to ensure we enjoyed the Dining experience. With regard to the food, although we couldn't put our fingers on why, we felt that although it was good it was not as good as on previous cruises but this may just be compliancy as the menu remains virtually the same from cruise to cruise. For the first time ever we dined on 3 evenings in the Windjammer and were pleasantly surprised, the food was good, varied and hot. We had some great steaks in there. There were always plenty of waiters on hand for drinks etc. Which made a very pleasant dining experience; we shall certainly be doing this again on future cruises. Lunch on seas days we used the Main Dining Room, the Bistro Menu was excellent and there was an extensive Salad Buffet to compliment the meal. We felt that this was far better option than the Windjammer which was usually very crowded at Lunch time. We usually took breakfast the Main Dining Room where we were able to use the Diamond Area this was also good, however if you are in a hurry this was not the place to go for breakfast, we didn't once get out in under an hour. We did however enjoy our breakfasts and the company of other passengers who were seated with us and after all with 6 full days at sea did it really matter how long it took to have breakfast. With regard to on board entertainment we enjoyed the Daily Trivia but didn't participate in much else although there were plenty of organised activities if you wanted them. We are not really Show people so we didn't go to any of the Stage Shows on board so I am unable to comment on their content. The Cruise Critic Group was excellent and we joined in Slot Pull, a Progressive Poker hand and a Golf Tournament. A big thanks to those people who organised these events. This was our first transatlantic cruise and certainly won't be our last, the 6 sea days were just wonderful a chance to totally relax. We had been to all the ports of call before so didn't take up any excursions, however we have decided we would like to see more of Madeira and will be looking for an excursion there when we do the Westbound Transatlantic on AOS in November Disembarkation in Malaga was well organised and efficient we left the ship at 0810 and by 0830 had collected our luggage and on our way home. A really good cruise and we can't wait to do it westbound in November. Read Less
Sail Date April 2012
Transatlantic Cruise Review and Port Guide, RCI's ADVENTURE OF THE SEAS, San Juan to Malaga, April 15-28, 2012 This was my first cruise on a Royal Caribbean ship, and it exceeded my expectations in every respect: ship, crew, ... Read More
Transatlantic Cruise Review and Port Guide, RCI's ADVENTURE OF THE SEAS, San Juan to Malaga, April 15-28, 2012 This was my first cruise on a Royal Caribbean ship, and it exceeded my expectations in every respect: ship, crew, activities, dining, price, and ports of call. I will describe each of them in that order. SHIP: The Adventure of the Seas was built in 2001, which makes it almost middle-aged by current cruise industry standards (seems young to me). It is well-maintained, and other than a few fogged windows (in the aft buffet) age is not an issue. It is 137,000 tons (three times the volume of the Titanic but smaller than its newer sister ships), and carries 3,000 passengers and 1,000 crew. It is the largest cruise ship that I have traveled on so far. I was afraid that the large size would create crowds and waiting lines, but that was never a problem. The ice skating rink (yes, ice rink) blocked through-traffic on decks two and three, and shoppers sometimes slowed traffic on the deck five mall, but the other decks never seemed crowded. The large size of the ship allows for a greater variety of sports and entertainment venues than on smaller ships. I was surprised that I never had to wait to participate in sports activities and always found a seat at entertainment (and enrichment) events. The decor of the ship is stylish with a few whimsical touches. The stairwell art works are especially enjoyable. If you have a chance, take the free art tour given by a crew member several times during the cruise. At about 153 sq. ft., my inside cabin was a bit smaller than I am used to, but it was well-designed and very functional. Only the CRT-type TV seemed dated. The climate control worked very well, and there always was enough fresh air at whatever temperature I wanted. The bathroom was snug, but the shower had great water pressure and the circular enclosure worked much better than the usual shower curtain. I was pleased with my inside cabin. I did not have an opportunity to view other cabin categories and cannot comment on them. For a look at the ship inside and out, a link to my photos is given at the end of this review. Photos of the ship are better than any description. CREW: All of the crew members were well-trained and thoroughly professional, from the cruise director (Abel, a charming polyglot from Switzerland) to the numerous people who worked behind the scenes keeping everything shipshape. I was impressed that the crew were very responsive to requests. When my shower backed up and later when my ceiling light flickered, the maintenance crew had each of them fixed within an hour. When I noted that the spa schedule was heavy on fee- and light on free-activities, the spa staff responded by adding a free stretch class every morning (try it, you will be amazed how enjoyable it is). The entertainment crew also did a great job. The singers and dancers were very talented, and the ice skaters were world class. The activities crew made certain that guests felt welcome to participate in (or simply watch) the numerous events they offered. They were always very polite and friendly, which is not easy when one loses an hour of sleep almost every night on an eastbound itinerary. My dining crew (I had open seating) were always first rate, and they always seemed to know my drink preferences even though I rotated tables and dined at various times. My cabin steward Joel also did a fine job. My cabin was always immaculate, and he greeted me by name and helped me practice my Spanish (for my trip through southern Spain that followed the cruise). PASSENGERS: Transatlantic cruises tend to attract an older and often better educated crowd with fewer children than shorter regional cruises, and that was the case on this cruise. Since the passengers on this itinerary were about a quarter North American, a quarter Hispanic, a quarter German, and the remaining quarter other European and Asian, one had a chance to experience a broad variety of backgrounds, world views, and languages (although most passengers also spoke English). Meeting them was one of the pleasures of open dining. Surprisingly few passengers smoked, and smoking was not an issue since it was limited to only a few areas. As on most ships, smoking was not allowed in the dining rooms and most other public areas. ACTIVITIES: The ice rink was a surprising pleasure. The ice shows were infrequent but impressive, with the cast of ten skating at a world class level. This will be your best chance to see (up close and personal) how athletic an ice show really is. Obtain your free tickets the day you board, and go early since it is open seating. The gym was adequate in size and equipment, but its open floor plan with a central whirlpool made it a bit noisy. Bring earplugs or headphones when you head for the gym. I carry earplugs to all cruise ship venues because of my personal bias against the muzak and over-amplified entertainment on almost all cruise lines, especially on the pool deck where one wants to relax. The sports deck offered a wide variety of activities. The rock climbing wall on the back of the smokestack was much more fun than I had expected. Make sure you give it a try. It is exhilarating, and easier than you think. On warm days the pool area was very busy, and as usual on cruise ships some people saved their deck chairs in advance, in spite of signs to the contrary. While it was warm in the Caribbean and western Atlantic, the eastern Atlantic was windy and very cool for April -- good for deck walks but not for sunning or swimming. The jogging/walking track on the top deck was often busy and sometimes very windy, but the deck 4 promenade area under the lifeboats was more protected and never crowded. By climbing stairs up to deck 5 in the bow and then back down to deck 4 one could encircle the entire ship. The balcony "bulge" midship gives beautiful sea views on these walks. The library had a relatively modest selection of books that often appeared to come from remaindered titles. You might want to bring some of your own reading material. The library had open shelves and was run on the honor system, which was convenient. Enrichment lectures were relatively lightly attended for a transatlantic crossing, but the three speakers were all entertaining and enthusiastic. Most lectures related to the next port of call or to our final destination (Spain), which was a plus. Some passengers were disappointed in the speed of the internet connection while mid-ocean (especially since it is billed per minute), but I did not have a problem since I only used it when we were in or near a port (public libraries in ports often have free internet, just ask locally). Wi-fi users seemed to like the outdoor tiled alcove near the solarium pool for a good connection. CROWN AND ANCHOR: A nice perk of my diamond Crown and Anchor status on RCI (based on reciprocity with my Captain's Club status on Celebrity) was 20 minutes of free internet usage. When you book a cruise with RCI and join their Crown and Anchor frequent-cruiser program, ask them to check your Celebrity account too, to see if you already qualify for RCI elite status. In addition to the internet credit, I received a free 8x10 photo of myself (the professional photographers were very good, and very polite), and I received coupons for reduced prices in several venues including laundry service. Perhaps the nicest perk was a daily pre-dinner cocktail hour in the Imperial Lounge with free wine and soda for diamond and higher Crown and Anchor categories. DINING: Dining preferences are subjective, but the following suggestions may be useful to you. The breakfast and lunch buffets (in the Windjammer) had both steam table and cold offerings. On every cruise line the former tend to be over-cooked, and so I tend to opt for the latter. The fresh fruit and crisp bacon at breakfast were excellent, and a wide variety of salads was available at lunch (although the main dining room salad bar was even better on sea days). Remember that the hand gels at the buffet entry are good for bacteria, but hand washing with soap and water is even better for viruses like the notorious Norovirus. It is just as important to wash your hands after using serving tongs as it is before entering the buffet. A nice bonus to hand washing is the beautiful view from the restrooms near the buffet entrance (they each have a glass wall overlooking the sea). All but one of the twenty meals I had in the main dining room, both lunches and dinners, exceeded my expectations (a great record, I think). The menu is not quite as inventive and the presentation is not quite as elegant as on premium or luxury cruise ships, but I did not expect it to be. However, the quality of the ingredients and their preparation were always first rate. At lunch on sea days, when the main dining room is open, you must try the chef's salad bar. It is the best I have had anywhere, on land or sea. Just make sure that your serving person is not too generous with the salad dressing. Main courses and desserts are offered in addition to the salad bar, but the salads are so large that you may not want anything more. At dinner the beef was always top quality prime rib or tenderloin (I did not try the off-menu sirloin and cannot evaluate it). Only once was the prime rib well done, rather than the rare that I ordered. At my request they even grilled the filet mignon extra rare, which few ship galleys are willing to do. The seafood (various white fish, shrimp, scallops) was always cooked to perfection, and except for the off-menu salmon, the seafood was never dry or overdone. The seafood was so good that I often ordered it. There was no rack of lamb, but the lamb shank was tender and flavorful. There was a variety of poultry and pork, which I did not sample since I have that often enough at home. I had a dinner salad (the Caesar) only once, and it had wilted under its dressing. At dinner it may be best to order salad with the dressing on the side. I did not try the soups, although my tablemates enjoyed them. Desserts at dinner and during the afternoon in the buffet were usually American style, with an emphasis on cakes, puddings, pies, and ice cream. Classic French desserts were less frequent, and chocolate desserts were not as flavorful as one would like. I opted for My Time (open) dining with pre-paid gratuities. I had multiple different servers and assistants, and all were excellent. Unfortunately there is currently no system to reward them with additional tips unless you hand each one a cash supplement at the end of the cruise. I hope some day RCI will be able to computerize this process from one's shipboard account, since it may involve a dozen different servers. I experienced three minor disappointments with My Time dining: First, some passengers reserved the same (usually small) table at the same time for almost every night of the cruise, essentially locking out others who might also want a table for two or six. The rest of us usually were seated at long tables for ten, which made both conversation and service difficult. To be fair to all passengers, My Time dining should not be My Table dining. Second, the servers were so generous that they often brought unordered cheese and fruit plates before presenting the menus. On one occasion a couple at my table (perhaps they had previously complained about something) even received two huge Greek salads, a platter of bruschetta, a cheese plate, and a plate of petits fours before they placed their orders. This generosity is done with the best of intentions, but extra food should be on a request only basis. Third, rather than seating guests in their order of arrival, my tables for ten were sometimes partly filled, service commenced, and then the remainder of the table was filled 15-20 minutes later. This staggered seating is difficult for both the servers and the earlier guests, who usually must delay their remaining courses until the later guests catch up. Open dining works better when a table is closed to new guests once the first course is served. PRICE: The good news is that this eastbound transatlantic cruise was the best value I have encountered in more than 20 years of cruising. The bad news is that cruise prices are capacity controlled, and you might not be able to obtain such a good price for your own transatlantic cruise. Several months before this cruise, I crossed the Atlantic westbound on a Celebrity ship. When I wanted to return eastbound on the same ship, the price was raised $400 for residents of my state (but not for residents of about 20 other states). Although I could afford the increase, the geographic discrimination turned me off. Instead I found this RCI cruise online. It was just as long as, but cost half as much as, my prior Celebrity cruise (excluding gratuities and port charges, which are fixed). Even better, I was able to obtain a solo cabin for only a small surcharge (most cruise lines charge solo travelers 200%, and sometimes even 300-400% of their standard rate for couples). My per diem as a solo passenger in an inside double cabin on this cruise was an astoundingly low 48 USD, before standard gratuities and port charges. Thank you RCI! However, when I considered extending my cruise on the same ship in the Mediterranean, a solo cabin for the extra one week would have cost more than four times the rate offered to couples, and more than twice what I paid for the prior two week transatlantic cruise. Also, when I considered taking the same transatlantic itinerary westbound on the same Adventure of the Seas next fall, a solo cabin would have cost three times the rate I paid for my cruise eastbound. Go figure. The lesson is that there is sometimes no apparent rhyme or reason to cruise fares. One must simply stay alert and watch for good values on the internet. I hope that RCI has another good value in the future, because I would happily cruise with them again when their solo cabin price is a good value. (N.B. Shortly after I wrote the above, I booked back to back Alaska cruises for June on the RCI Radiance of the Seas -- not the fantastic bargain that my transatlantic cruise had been, but a good value compared with all the other solo cabins on cruise lines in Alaska.) PORTS OF CALL: I rarely book a tour in any port of call. I much prefer to explore ports on my own, taking cheap public transportation and meeting locals along the way. The following information may help you to do the same on this itinerary. First, my photo links are given here and again at the end of this cruise review. You will be surprised how attractive these ports are. Click on this link (or copy and paste it in your browser if necessary): https://picasaweb.google.com/efschlenk/TACruise412Album?authkey=Gv1sRgCNOnrerv9O-wUA# Thumbnail photos will then appear (if you get a "stack overload" alert due to the number of photos, just click on the alert till it closes). Then click on the "slideshow" option in the upper left. Wiggle your mouse to access the control panel to set speed, pause, or go back. SAN JUAN, PUERTO RICO: Our cruise began in San Juan. San Juan hotels are overpriced, especially near cruise departure days, so I stayed in a basic and inexpensive (less than the cab fare from the airport) posada in old San Juan (Posada San Francisco, on Plaza Colon). There I met several others going on my cruise, and we shared a taxi to the RCI cruise terminal in the morning. Old San Juan is a pleasure for strolling. Make sure you leave enough time to enjoy it, especially the two historic forts run by the National Park Service (El Morro and San Cristobal). For free entry to both, remember to bring your national park pass (Golden Eagle, etc.) from home. The RCI cruise terminal is across the bay from old San Juan. There is no bus service nearby and you will need to hire a taxi to get there. Taxis from the airport to old San Juan are regulated and cost about $24 (for the entire cab), but taxis from old San Juan to the cruise terminal may take some negotiating (always agree on the price in advance, since most taxis are not metered). Boarding begins around noon. Getting there earlier means you will simply have to wait in line (outside) longer. ST. THOMAS, USVI: I regret to say that this is my least favorite port in the Caribbean. It is usually overwhelmed with cruise ships, even though the locals try very hard to accommodate them. In years past we used to take the small ferry to Water Island to escape the cruise crowds (this is most convenient if your ship docks at the yacht harbor in Crown Bay). Unfortunately, local tour operators now bring party barges and catamarans into the Water Island beach every mid-day, so it is no longer quiet or pleasant. Magens Bay beach is probably the best alternative (pay for a taxi to the north shore, then pay for beach entry). We may simply stay onboard and enjoy the empty ship when our itineraries take us to St. Thomas in the future. ST. MAARTEN/ST. MARTIN (DUTCH/FRENCH): I am a francophile and a francophone, but I must admit that the Dutch half of this island (where the cruise ships dock) is much nicer than the French side. The French beaches (including the famous but unpleasant Orient Beach) are on the windward side, with rough surf, no free shade, and seaweed and plastic debris in the water and on the beach. A much better alternative is to walk from the ship into Phillipsburg along the nice pedestrian walkway. A few blocks inland from the town waterfront you will find mini-vans heading west to Mullet Bay Beach (a scenic 20 minute ride for 2 USD). Look for the Mullet Bay sign in the mini-van window, and remember to greet the driver and other passengers when you enter. The driver will drop you a short walk from the beach. Along the way you will pass the infamous Maho Beach, where jets land and take off just overhead. This is an awesome event, especially the late morning arrival of the KLM 747 from Europe (check flight schedules if you are interested in being blasted by awesome jet noise). Mullet Bay Beach is far enough beyond Maho Beach that it is not bothered by the jets. It offers a long strip of pristine white sand and crystal clear water straight out of a travel poster. On week day mornings it is almost empty and absolutely glorious. There is shade, but no changing room, so wear your suit if you do not want to change under your towel. Vendors there rent chairs and umbrellas, and they sell snacks and drinks. SANTA CRUZ, TENERIFE, CANARY ISLANDS (SPANISH): The first of the two Canary Islands on our cruise, Tenerife Island is well-developed and tourist friendly. Most of its tourists arrive by air from Europe. Most of the beaches are on the south coast, but the best sightseeing is to the north and west of the Santa Cruz cruise port. There was a good deal of construction along the Santa Cruz waterfront (it is being upgraded), but signs will direct you along a 10 minute walk to the main waterfront boulevard, where you can catch a local bus (you will need a few euros for buses, drivers make change) westbound to the large main bus station ("Estacion" on the front of the bus, or ask the driver). From there, you can catch a bus (there are several per hour, I believe #15) to La Laguna, an inland town about 20 minutes northwest, with a UNESCO World Heritage preserved historic center. Old La Laguna is wonderful for strolling and is just a 10 minute walk from the local bus station (or take the modern tram those few blocks). The local tourism board in the center provides free guided walks on most days around noon. There is an old tower in the town center with nice views (it does not open till 10am), and there is a nice farmers and florists market a few blocks northeast of the old town. Remember that clean and free public restrooms are available in the La Laguna bus station and in the farmers market building. If you have time and interest, there are frequent buses from La Laguna to Puerto de la Cruz on the northwest coast, an additional 20 minute ride on the freeway. This is an attractive tourist enclave with a nice parks and a waterfront walk. The local tourism board has good maps for self-guided walking tours, and their historic office on the waterfront has a nice gift shop with local crafts, including handmade lace. There is no bus station building in Puerto de la Cruz. Instead the buses all line up along one street located a few blocks above the waterfront, with street signs giving the destinations and schedules. There are frequent buses back to Santa Cruz, about a 30 minute ride on the non-stop (I believe #103) bus. With your remaining time in Santa Cruz (the cruise port) I suggest you walk around the Calatrava-designed Auditorium of Tenerife, which is near the main bus station. It is similar to his famously winged Milwaukee art museum in the U.S.A. Make sure you look at the painted rocks along the waterfront near the auditorium. The portraits will surprise you. See how many you can recognize. From the auditorium it is a 15 minute walk back toward the center of town to the modern TEA public library and contemporary art museum. The former is the most beautiful library I have seen anywhere (and it has free internet). The latter has temporary exhibitions, some of which are very enjoyable if you are an art lover, and are relatively inexpensive. There is a coffee shop between the library and museum, with a separate entry. Next door to the TEA is the anthropology and natural history museum, which some recommended but I did not have time to see. From there it is a 20 minute walk back to the ship. There is usually a shuttle from the ship to the town center for a few USD, but it was not operating early enough for me, and the public bus stop is close to the ship anyway. You will be surprised how enjoyable Tenerife and La Laguna can be. ARRECIFE, LANZAROTE, CANARY ISLANDS (SPANISH): Lanzarote Island is famous for its barren volcanic landscape, which has been used in some science fiction movies as an alien planet. Incongruously, one of the most popular ship tours is a camel ride in the remote volcanic national park. There are also many things you can do on your own at a fraction of the cost. Cruise ships dock about 2 miles (3 km) east of Arrecife town. There is a small beach at the port (too cold to swim, but adequate for sunning on a warm day). Just follow the pedestrian walkway signs. One can continue on foot to Arrecife, but it is too far and uninteresting to be worthwhile. Instead of the walkway to Arrecife, walk 10 minutes straight out of the cruise port to the main highway (follow the trucks and buses, and use caution because there is no sidewalk toward the end). On the highway traffic circle is the Estrella restaurant. On the side of the highway next to the Estrella restaurant you can flag the local bus (I believe #3) eastbound to Costa Teguise. It departs every 20 minutes, takes about 15 minutes, and costs about 1.50 euros (drivers make change). At the end of the line, there is a condo area with shops and several pleasant beaches (walk through the mall to get to the beach promenade). Alternately, across the highway from the Estrella restaurant is the westbound bus (I believe #3) into Arrecife (10 minutes, about 1.50 euros) and beyond to Playa del Carmen on the south coast (about 30 minutes more, although I did not go there). Instead, I changed buses in Arrecife (at the main bus station inland or at the large outdoor Intercambiador bus stop near the waterfront) and took the #60 bus for a 60 minute long, 4 euro ride along the center of the island past the volcanic national park (no access by public bus) to Playa Blanca on the west coast. This route gives a scenic view of most of the island, and the beach walk at Playa Blanca is very pleasant. The #60 bus runs only once every hour (near the top of the hour) so plan your return to the ship accordingly. FUNCHAL, MADEIRA ISLAND (PORTUGUESE): Madeira Island has a local bus system, but most of it is thinly scheduled, for locals going to and from work. However, there is good bus service (#20 or #21, I believe) up the mountain behind Funchal to the beautiful vistas and street sled rides of El Monte. Funchal itself is a beautiful town with wonderful gardens. A ride up and down from El Monte followed by a walk through Funchal with visits to the farmers market and several churches and museums will easily fill your day. At the cruise port pick up a free map of Funchal. From the cruise ship it is a scenic 15 minute walk along the yacht harbor and waterfront to the Praca de Autonomia (Plaza of Autonomy). On the west side of the plaza, heading uphill along the (usually dry) riverbed is the bus stop for El Monte. It is a scenic 15 minute ride up (about 2 euros) to the church (igreja) of El Monte (ask the driver where to get off). From the church front you can look down over Funchal and the cruise port. Right below the church is the starting point for the famous street (basket) sled rides part way downhill. The bus ride back down was thrilling enough for me, but just watching the sleds take off is fun. Near the church is a large public garden, but the entry is 10 euros, and the gardens in town are free. On the east side of the Praca de Autonomia downtown is the indoor farmers, fishmen, and florists market. There you will find colorful photo ops, especially since the florists still wear the island's traditional red costumes and caps. Walking along the pedestrian zone west from the market and the Praca de Autonomia you will come to the historic town center along Avenida Arriaga. There you will find many cafes, free wi-fi, beautiful blue (in spring) jacaranda trees, and a wonderful public flower garden. If you head uphill from that flower garden, you will come to Santa Clara street, which leads up to two fine museums, a beautiful church (San Pedro) and a nice old convent (Santa Clara). Near the top of the street is the Museu Quinta das Cruzes, a fine old mansion where the last Austrian emperor was exiled after the war. It is now a museum of decorative arts. In the museum garden is a nice orchid display. A few blocks below this, also on Santa Clara street is the Museu Freitas. Half is a modern building with a good collection of the famous old tiles (azulejos) which one sees in churches and homes. The other half is the former mansion of Dr. Freitas. The mansion is particularly impressive because its valuable art objects are in situ, and not behind glass. To see the Santa Clara convent you will have to ring the bell next to the gate. If it is answered, a nun (or employee) will include you in one of their tours. San Pedro church is near the convent on your way back down to the town center. For those who are unable to walk well, I believe Funchal has a hop on/off bus tour that leaves from the waterfront, but I do not know the schedule or prices. MALAGA, SPAIN: Malaga was founded by Phoenicians, then settled by Romans. It is surprisingly attractive and enjoyable for a day visit (or preferably an overnight), and the local tourist offices are friendly and helpful. Torremolinos is a short bus ride west of Malaga, and Nerja (less crowded and more attractive than Torremolinos) is a 50 minute bus ride east. Buses to either leave from the bus stop on Avenida Herredia near the waterfront, which is closer to the town center than the main bus station. Cruise ships dock about a mile (1.5 km) from the historic center of Malaga and about two miles (3.0 km) from the back-to-back train and bus stations. The airport is several miles west of town, but there are good airport buses every 25 minutes (2 euros) leaving from Alameda Principal, the short boulevard with florist booths located between the waterfront and the old town center. On arrival in Malaga at the end of my cruise I walked off the ship at 0630 and took a taxi (they are all small, white, and metered) from the ship to the bus station (about 10 euros plus tip) for my bus ride to Ronda. I was at the bus station before 0700 and was glad to have taken the taxi since it started to rain a few minutes later. I stayed in Malaga for two nights (at the small, central, and very reasonable Hotel Trebol) after spending two weeks traveling on my own through Andalusia (Ronda, Sevilla, Cordoba, and Granada). From Malaga I then took an inexpensive Veuling (Iberia code share) flight to Barcelona, where I stayed a few more days before flying back to the U.S.A. In addition to a side trip to Nerja, I enjoyed Malaga's Picasso Museum (Malaga was his birthplace) in a restored mansion with a pleasant garden cafe. While the Barcelona Picasso Museum has mainly early (adolescent) and late (Las Meninas cycle) works, the Malaga Picasso Museum has works from his middle years that he kept for himself and are now on loan from his family. Near the Picasso Museum is Malaga's large cathedral (with a small but free art museum in the adjacent historic Episcopal Palace), and also nearby is Malaga's open Roman amphitheater. The entire downtown area is a stylish pedestrian zone with nice shops and cafes, which are especially enjoyable for people watching during the evening paseo. West of the town center is a photogenic indoor farmers market (a block from my Hotel Trebol), and north of that is a small but enjoyable costume and decorative arts museum All of these sights are listed on the free tourist maps, which are available from tourist information booths near the waterfront, the cathedral, the Picasso Museum, and the amphitheater. Like Cartagena farther up Spain's Mediterranean coast, Malaga is much nicer than one expects. Malaga is a very enjoyable place to start or end a cruise. Again, for those interested, my photos of the ship and some of the ports are at the following link. Click on this link (or copy and paste it in your browser if necessary): https://picasaweb.google.com/efschlenk/TACruise412Album?authkey=Gv1sRgCNOnrerv9O-wUA# Thumbnail photos will then appear (if you get a "stack overload" alert due to the number of photos, just click on the alert till it closes). Then click on the "slideshow" option in the upper left. Wiggle your mouse to access the control panel to set speed, pause, or go back. I hope you find the above information useful. Enjoy my photos and your next cruise. Bon voyage! Read Less
Sail Date April 2012
Overall, great trip from start to finish. Easy, easy check-in in San Juan, no standing in line. Great service from our stateroom attendant Imade, and from dining room staff who coped well with our group of 30+ rotating around our four ... Read More
Overall, great trip from start to finish. Easy, easy check-in in San Juan, no standing in line. Great service from our stateroom attendant Imade, and from dining room staff who coped well with our group of 30+ rotating around our four tables each evening. Food was great, and service exceptional- thanks to Georgean, Agnelo, Amrish and Kimber. Also, big thanks to Fernando at front desk for his help resolving intenet issues, the one big problem spot of the trip (costs a lot and doesn't always work as advertised, something I had checked on specificially before the trip. A more honest assessment of internet challenges prior to cruise would have been appreciated).Dance Band, Take 4, is great, just started too late most evenings. If you have early dinner, most of the entertainment other than nightly show, didn't start until 10:30 which was a shame. Tony B in Piano Bar is lots of fun, and Manuelo and his classical guitar skills were wonderful. As for shows, saw several, probably favorite was group from South Africa and their "Temptations" act. One night ship's band played Big Band music on the Promenade-great music but why not where there was a dance floor? Days at sea were smooth as glass, and didn't run out of things to do. Fitness Center was busy as you might expect at certain times of day, but we were always able to work out as planned.Anna and her staff were very helpful in working to accommodate some specific needs and requests of our group. A big plus. Read Less
Sail Date May 2011
Our objective in booking this cruise was to relax and visit ports that were new to us. This crossing took the southern route through the Caribbean, over to the Canary Islands and then north along the African coast. We found this route to ... Read More
Our objective in booking this cruise was to relax and visit ports that were new to us. This crossing took the southern route through the Caribbean, over to the Canary Islands and then north along the African coast. We found this route to be warmer and more conducive to enjoying outdoor activities such as the pools. It's wonderful that RCL celebrates days that are special to their clientele. This cruise had a large % of Hispanics probably in part because it departed from San Juan. RCL included a Cinco de Mayo pool party that we enjoyed even though we are not Hispanic. We highly recommend joining the Crown & Anchor Club. On this voyage, we were Emerald members which entitled us to an excellent reception. We also attended the Meet & Mingle reception where we were able to meet in person fellow travelers that had been corresponding with us on line. The hors d'oeuvres and raffle prizes were excellent. Read Less
Sail Date May 2011
This was a 13 night Transatlantic Cruise from San Juan to Barcelona. I'll start off by saying this cruise was fantastic - the weather was gorgeous, the seas were freakily calm - we met some good people and had an excellent time ... Read More
This was a 13 night Transatlantic Cruise from San Juan to Barcelona. I'll start off by saying this cruise was fantastic - the weather was gorgeous, the seas were freakily calm - we met some good people and had an excellent time overall. There was a fly in the ointment in that our luggage was lost for almost 10 days - which didn't spoil the cruise altogether, but obviously could have enhanced our experience even more. The luggage situation: We flew British Airways, Heathrow to San Juan via Miami. When checking in at London Heathrow, we specifically asked if we would need to collect our luggage in Miami and re-check it for the San Juan, American Airlines part of the flight. We were told no, we didn't need to do anything, and the check in girl put special large orange tags on all our luggage to say the passengers (we) would not be collecting in Miami and it would go straight through to San Juan! I asked her we would know it had been transferred and she said to check at the boarding gate in Miami - we did as instructed but the person at the boarding gate said there was no way she could tell if our luggage had been transferred to that flight! Well, it never did get past Miami. When we arrived in San Juan and realised it wasn't coming through, we made a report and were told not to worry, there were several more flights coming in and we should get our luggage before the ship sailed. Well by Sunday morning we had to make a decision - if the luggage didn't arrive, we would be at sea for a week - the next land was La Palma, Canary Islands - we needed to buy essentials just in case. We had very little in our hand luggage - one change of clothes each and a small amount of toiletries. So off we went into Old Town San Juan and bought some basics - but nothing you could possibly consider formal clothing so we knew we would be doing the buffet for formal nights! Long story short, the luggage never arrived and we sailed without it. So, onboard ship, we went to Guest Services and told them about the luggage (just in case it would arrive at the last minute) - they gave us two small amenities packs - toothbrush, toothpaste, comb, razor, deodorant - nothing else. We had booked a Grand Suite and asked if we could go straight into the cabin to drop our bags off - we had hand luggage and much shopping - they were not happy about it but as the cabin was ready they allowed us to drop all the bags off!!!! And the cabin was lovely - maintained very well, the bathroom was gorgeous, no obvious signs of too much wear and tear anywhere. The balcony was quite enclosed which we liked - very private. We went to get something to eat in the buffet area which was like a zoo - obviously everyone was waiting for the cabins to become available. We eventually found somewhere to park our bottoms and eat some pizza (not brilliant - DH couldn't eat his as the bottom crust was so hard he could even cut it). We found that the buffet found really wasn't up to much - the food in the dining room was excellent however - we never had a bad meal in there. The ship itself is in excellent condition - we didn't see staff constantly cleaning like you do on Celebrity - but nevertheless it was spotless at all times. I can only think they must do cleaning throughout the night so passengers are not disturbed too much. We didn't see too many shows, but the ones we did see were good. The ice show is amazing and it's a surprise to have a production like that on a ship! The best show for us was the crew show - and especially DeDe the concierge - she has an amazing hidden talent - belly dancing!!! And boy was she good. A total surprise and one of the best things we have ever had the pleasure to watch on a ship! Well done DeDe. Due to the luggage situation, as you would expect we did have some issues along the way: When we first told Guest Services onboard the ship that our luggage was lost, (we found out later) they should have given us the amenities pack - together with Lost Luggage Laundry Vouchers (to allow you to put your laundry in at night and get it back before 9am the following morning) and tux rental. We were never offered those. On the fifth day at sea, after speaking to fellow passengers, we found out about these vouchers and asked DeDe about them. That's when we found out they should have been given to us on day one - we were annoyed as nobody had asked us if we had these things, knowing our situation (we had no idea they were available to us or even existed so how would we know to ask for them). Up to then I had been washing items in the bathroom as we couldn't afford to risk not getting things back by the following morning. DeDe admitted she dropped the ball on that one!!! That was almost the last issue on the laundry matter until I called for the laundry to be collected - but nobody had picked it up after an hour. With all our clothes in the laundry bag I took it down to the front desk in my bathrobe - as we needed it for the next morning!!! Can you imagine? Luckily there were hardly any passengers about, and those I did see I just said "Sorry, lost luggage!" LOL. Carlotta on Guest Services then asked us if there was anything we needed (by which time we had most of what we needed to get by) - there was one item, which she told us to get from the shop onboard and give her the receipt - and she would refund it to our account. We had to chase four times throughout the cruise to get that refunded. Then there was the matter of any onboard credit - a total of $100 for early booking. We also had to chase several times before that appeared on our account towards the end of the cruise. We had booked late traditional dining, but due to the lost luggage, we felt uncomfortable sitting with the same table mates each night with the same clothes so we asked DeDe if we could change to MTD. She confirmed they could only do a table for 2 at 9:30pm or a table for 6 at 7pm. We said the table for 6 would be fine. So that night we presented ourselves at 7pm and were told we couldn't go in the dining room as they didn't have room. We said DeDe had confirmed the change but they still insisted they couldn't do it. So we said we would go back to DeDe to check - we started walking away then someone came running after us to say they did have a table for 6 if that was ok! Duh!!! That is what we had agreed to! Day 7 at sea - the most horrendous banging carried on for about 4 hours (if you can imagine someone hitting a metal pipe with a hammer non-stop for all that time). To be fair we reported it to Guest Services and they got it stopped within 5 minutes. Apparently someone decided it was a good idea to do pool maintenance. GS said they absolutely should not do that when guests are onboard and they would not be allowed to do it for the rest of the cruise. There were a few minutes were it started up again and I almost freaked out - but it stopped again very quickly and we heard no more banging! Antonio, the luggage co-ordinator had kept us informed and on day 2 he called to say our luggage was in our first port of call, La Palma in the Canary Islands - I asked if it was actually there now and he said yes. Well we got to La Palma and no luggage. We eventually found out it had been sent from San Juan back to Miami, then onto Madrid - then to Las Palmas in Gran Canaria - totally the wrong island but they got the name mixed up! We eventually received it the next day in Tenerife on day 9 of the cruise. I was so excited to know it was on it's way to us - if you have ever had all your luggage go missing you will understand! All that good stuff that you pack for a cruise and you may never see it again. So I was ecstatic to know we had it all back at least. Everything seemed to be there - although the back of one case was completely broken - luckily it didn't damage anything inside. As we now had only 5 days of the cruise left, we decided it would be silly to unpack everything so we just lived out of the cases for the last few days. It was a shame that we didn't get the full experience of the Grand Suite - ie unpacking and being able to choose your clothes easily each day - and being able to have the cabin clear without luggage sitting on most surfaces. Anyway - lesson learned here - never book with British Airways again, and we will probably only book our own flights in the future rather than doing them through the cruise line. What else can I say about the ship - we were really looking forward to the promenade shops - but found that actually Celebrity shops are better - the promenade is more like a street with the shops, the pub, the coffee bar etc - you could sit all day and people watch - but for the actual content of what the shops sell, we think Celebrity are better. The pool area was very nice (although the music played by the Caribbean band was way too loud). And we loved the pool chair policy - you have to use your seapass card to obtain pool towels, so you don't get every lounger with a towel and a book on them - and not a person in sight. There were always chairs available if you wanted them - in good locations too, right by the pool. The "non reserving of chairs" policy does really seem to work and they enforce it which is great for everyone. We had a good couple of games of mini-golf, and watching the climbers on the rock climbing wall is good entertainment to pass some time as well. The Concierge Lounge is great for Suites and Diamond plus guests - on this cruise they had two venues as I believe there were a lot of Diamond plus guests onboard - a very nice place to sit pre-dinner and chat with people - who of course you get to know very well throughout the cruise. We met some very nice people in there (and of course the drinks are provided which saves some $$$). We tried Johnny Rockets (well you have to do it once don't you) - we thought the food was good and it was good fun. The Cruise Critic meeting was a bit of a mix up - it was meant to be the first day at sea according to the schedule on the website - all the CCers turned up but RCI didn't. Someone checked with the events co-ordinator and they said they would do it the next day and an invitation would be sent to all cabins that evening. Nothing showed up so some of us went to the nominated bar anyway - no meeting. We finally had the meeting on the third sea day and there was a good turn out. RCI provided drinks and nibbles - and did a raffle for some small prizes. A group of us then did a cabin crawl which was good fun also - it was great to see all the different variety of cabins. One of the CCers asked if RCI would host a lunch for the group - which they did - including wine which was very nice. Another opportunity for everyone to get together. The only thing is the invitation did not say the lunch was a CC organised lunch - so I guess some people may not have turned up as they didn't know what it was for. Overall, despite the problems we had, we didn't let them spoil the cruise. Generally the crew are brilliant and can't do enough for you - our waitress especially was extremely good, actually there was only one crew member that we didn't particularly like - that was the head waiter in Portofino's who made it quite clear about the dress code and that we wouldn't be welcome!! We made a point of going to eat there after we received our luggage just to let him know that we did actually own good clothes!!! Our cabin staff were also awesome - we hardly saw them but it was like they just knew every time when we had left the cabin - it was always made up whenever we returned to it. The thing that really made this cruise was all the people we met onboard. This was definitely one of our better cruises - the ship is awesome, as is the staff, I just can't think of anything really bad to say about the ship at all. We are thinking of doing the similar cruise on this ship next year - but of course we will pick our flights very carefully. Read Less
Sail Date May 2010
This was our 3rd. Transatlantic cruise and our 23rd cruise in 10 years. We are a Norwegian couple who previous have sailed with Costa, NCL, RCCL and some minor European Cruise Lines. Pre-cruise: We flew into San Juan, Puerto Rico two ... Read More
This was our 3rd. Transatlantic cruise and our 23rd cruise in 10 years. We are a Norwegian couple who previous have sailed with Costa, NCL, RCCL and some minor European Cruise Lines. Pre-cruise: We flew into San Juan, Puerto Rico two days before the cruise. We stayed at the Hilton DoubleTree Hotel. The hotel is very nice, but the location is some distance from San Juan old town. Embarkation - That went very quickly, perhaps because we are Platinum Members in RCCL´s Crown & Anchor Society? The Ship: The Adventure of the Seas is a very nice ship, though it is beginning to show some wear. Some carpet needs to be replaced, and we also observed a minor need of refurbishment in our bathroom. The crew: We were very impressed with the crew. Most of them we meet were very friendly. Cabin info- We had booked an aft. balcony cabin on deck 9. It was a nice cabin, but with one exception, we really think that the chairs and the table on our balcony for a long time should have been changed, they were old and outdated. Our cabin attendant from Mauritius was excellent in every way, during the entire cruise. Dining - we ate every evening in the Mozart Dining Room on deck five, with My Time Dining (MTD). This was one our best dining experience on any cruise. We were mostly served by the waiter Pilar from Chile and her assistant waiter Gennadiy from Ukraine. Both they and the other waiters and assistant waiters we meet in the Dining Room was really excellent! We also received excellent service from the hostess Ana from Mexico, and friendly service from the Maitre D'. The food for dinner was well presented and mostly very good. The food for breakfast and lunch in the Buffet Restaurant Windjammer was standard buffet food. The staff in the Windjammer on this cruise was particularly service-minded and effective! We did not ate in the Portofino speciality restaurant. Public areas - pleasing. We also felt that the public areas were very well appointed. However, we miss that the solarium on the Voyager Class Ships, do not have a retractable cover.The Bars: We were particularly fond of the Viking Crown Lounge at the top of the ship, with fabulous views over the ocean. Entertainment – we think the shows were of usual cruise ships standard. After 10 days, we were very tired of the music selection to the Steel Band playing on Pool Deck. Itinerary – good. A mix of relaxing seadays and nice ports to explore. Disembarkation in Barcelona - smooth. Easy to find luggage. We took a taxi from the Cruise-terminal to the airport. Only 5 minutes wait. The drive to the airport took only 25 minutes, and we paid € 40, inclusive tip. Glad we did not paid for RCCL’s shuttle bus to the airport! Overall – We really enjoyed this Cruise, the Ship and the Crew! Read Less
Sail Date May 2010
Adventure of the Seas Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.2
Dining 4.0 4.0
Entertainment 5.0 3.8
Public Rooms 5.0 4.3
Fitness Recreation 5.0 4.1
Family 5.0 4.1
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.9
Enrichment 1.0 3.6
Service 4.0 4.4
Value For Money 4.0 3.9
Rates 4.0 4.0

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