5 Royal Caribbean Voyager of the Seas Cruise Reviews for Holiday Cruises to Europe - Western Mediterranean

So, the long awaited Venice cruise happened and Venice wasn't the highlight ! Flew into Marco Polo airport and had no problems finding the RCI staff who escorted us to the waiting coach and off we went. EMBARKATION : A bit of a ... Read More
So, the long awaited Venice cruise happened and Venice wasn't the highlight ! Flew into Marco Polo airport and had no problems finding the RCI staff who escorted us to the waiting coach and off we went. EMBARKATION : A bit of a scrum but was OK, no problems. We boarded just after noon I think and the cabins weren't quite ready so we headed off for some lunch. CABIN : We pretty much always go for an inside cabin, that way we can cruise again for the same money as if we had a balcony... 2 cruises for the price of one is how I see it. Plus we like insides, I mean its DARK in there people... perfect for sleep, either at night or an afternoon siesta ! Cabin was standard really, large double bed, sofa, TV, blah blah.. However, one thing that did annoy us big time was the fact that the shower had NO SHOWER GEL ! Our cabin steward told us they had run out 3 or 4 weeks previously, but we think that's a puny excuse by RCI, who treat us 'poor' inside folks like 2ND class citizens ! Our friends, in an outside, our friends in a balcony, ALL had shower gel and what is more, they had it replaced whilst cruising ! So, RCI : SORT YOURSELVES OUT, it's penny pinching at its worst. Good job I shave my head lol Also, we found some leftover rubbish in the cabin, a paper coffee cup plus receipts inside it from August... not exactly welcoming. One other thing, dont even think about making a phone call from your cabin..$7.95 per minute ! Overall, happy with the cabin. DINING : We don't really like traditional dining, I wear a suit all day at work and am damned if I am wearing one on holiday, or worse still a tuxedo ! Not a chance. So, we were slightly concerned that we wouldn't be allowed in the main dining room for our 6.30pm sitting. However, it wasn't a problem. On formal nights, most had tuxedos or suits, I had a long sleeve shirt and trousers. I did notice we had a poorly positioned table though, right at the entrance, wondering if that was because of our inside cabin ? Maybe a co-incidence. Now here is how traditional dining can be the best ever, or the worst ever. Our table was for 6. On the first evening there were ourselves and a fantastic couple from California, who became our friends and hopefully will remain so for life... cheers facebook ! No-one else. Same for nights 2, 3, on night 4 we were astonished to see a German couple there. Fine, new friends. However to say conversation was difficult would be an understatement. It was like going to the dentist and it ruined our dining experience. Suffice to say we avoided them on future evenings, and to be fair they avoided us, it was funny to us four that we bumped into them in the Windjammer buffet the evening after... we went there to avoid them and evidentally they felt the same ! Jonny Rockets has a cover charge of $4.95 per person, fair enough we thought we would give it a try. However, ON PRINCIPLE, we refused as when we got there ( and it was deserted ! ) we found out that drinks were extra, as were shakes. NO DRINKS in a diner ! Ridiculous. Dining, pretty good, was happy to get out of the main dining room though to get some 'real' food from time to time.. some of the meals were so posh I didn't know whether to eat them or frame them and have them mounted on my wall. SHIP : Yes, liked the ship. But if you have cruised before you will understand she is similar to a lot of ships these days. Plenty of retail opportunities for those who choose it, 2 storey theatre, Gym, Spa, etc etc. DRINKS : Oh my word. Some of the UK readers of this review may recall an advert on TV some time ago where a guy wanted to purchase something and he picked up the phone and called his bank manager to check he could afford it... well, he was on this cruise !!! Blimey, are drinks expensive or what !? That's not a question guys, trust me its the answer. For the UK drinker, alcohol is priced eye wateringly high. A Fosters 'oilcan', that's a pint to you and me, was about $9, including the outrageous 15% tip for the waiter to walk 100 yards and bring it to you. Now I can sink a pint in roughly 5 seconds when I want to...and it doesn't take a genius to work out that I didn't do so on this occasion. I simply cannot understand the logic of charging so much for drinks onboard, half the passengers weren't drinking anything at all and I reckon that was due to ridiculous cost. RCI, lower the prices, lower the gratuity, more people will booze and your profits will rise. Drinks, total extortion. EXCURSIONS : Continuing my theme of total extortion ( lol )... RCI should re-brand their tours ' Tours for Millionaires '. Or maybe a more realistic, ' over priced, short on time tours for the stinkingly stupid '.. yeah, that would work. Don't do them guys. As usual there are plenty of locals who work really hard to give you the day trip you deserve at half the price RCI want. If you are reading this then I assume you are quite familiar with the internet.. try a quick search. It's not hard ! Alternatively, wait til you dock, and grab someone standing there ! Cruise Critic doesn't list 2 of the places we visited so I will give a brief run down here. KOPER : We booked a SUPERB local guide online with fellow roll call members from this website. Graham, he is English, picked us up at the dock and took 8 of us on one of the best trips I have been on recently. First stop was Ljubljana, capital city of this small country. Stayed there for a while and had time to explore. Next up was Lake Bled, what a place, absolutely stunning. We visited the castle and took in the town. Then onto Vintgar gorge, wow was all I could think of this place. Some brave folks had made a walkway down the gorge that is literally hanging off the cliff ! Amazing. All in all the day was about 8 hours, back in good time for the ship. Thanks Graham ! RAVENNA : Ravenna is one of the few places I recommend cruisers to take the cruise line shuttle as it is a long way from port to town. The shuttle was $15. Nothing to do by port at all. Ravenna itself is home to several UNESCO World Heritage sites, namely the famous Mosaics from the Byzantine era. Very impressive. ENTERTAINMENT : Night one was an excellent Argentinian duo with drums, it doesn't sound much but they were fantastic. Production shows we thought were not so good, they never sang any songs anyone had heard of and on the odd occasion they did they did their own versions that were so unrecognisable we didn't even realise til they almost finished what they were. Poor. They had a Beach Boy tribute on and whilst not really my thing, I thought it was the best night of the cruise. Also that night was a fluorescent show, wow that was superb ! I was very hesitant about that initially but it turned out to be a real highlight. The entertainment staff were pretty good, Abel was the cruise director and he was great. SUMMARY : Enjoyed the cruise. But then again I have never NOT enjoyed a cruise. Would I cruise RCI again ? Well, we put down a deposit onboard with them for a future cruise so I guess that would say something. There are a few things I think RCI should change, namely extortionate drinks prices, extortionate shuttle prices ( $14 to Bari, we WALKED in 10-15 mins along a totally flat promenade ) and expensive excursions. But the savvy cruiser already knows that cruiselines do this and can take steps to avoid them. Read Less
Sail Date October 2011
We flew into Barcelona and stayed in the city for 2 days before the cruise. It really helped us acclimate to the time change and an added bonus we had a great time in the city. Barcelona has a very modern and clean subway system that made ... Read More
We flew into Barcelona and stayed in the city for 2 days before the cruise. It really helped us acclimate to the time change and an added bonus we had a great time in the city. Barcelona has a very modern and clean subway system that made getting around very simple. Many shops and restaurants spoke a bit of English and with our limited Spanish it was very easy. The tapas and sangria cannot be missed! Embarkation was fairly easy and well-organized. Do as much as you can online ahead of time and it goes very smoothly. Make sure to utilize the duty-free shops after you check-in but before boarding. The bottled water can be taken directly on-board and it is a fraction of the ship's package. In addition, you can put a few bottles of wine or liquor into a carry-on(again in the duty-free area) and it is the only time they don't screen your bags as you board. Our room wasn't ready so we were all "herded" into the Windjammer Cafe until around 2. It was really crowded and hot and not a good start for first-time cruisers. Our room was a family suite and was bigger than we expected. We had a second small bedroom in addition to a pull-out and larger(queen)bed as well as a sitting/living room area. It was plenty of room for the 5 of us. Our other family members had a balcony stateroom that was a good size and had a nice balcony. The rooms are dated and bit worn but clean. The cruise line did a nice job having lots of hand sanitizer around the ship with the threat of H1N1. Our attendant Vincent was great and our bags arrived before we did. The "muster" drill was pretty painless and was well organized. We wandered around the ship later that afternoon-it's huge but easy to get around. The ship is over-the-top in a lot of ways but what we expected. The constant money-grab gets to be a bit much but you can steer away from it. Our dining was the late seating which worked out well with the excursion days-it gives you time to relax before dinner. Food on the ship is not a strong-point ranging from cafeteria-like(Windjammer) to mediocre at best in main dining room. Our server, Anna, was great but the "head waiter" did nothing at all! Our first day was at sea and it gave us time to explore the ship and relax. One big problem RCI needs to address is the smoking on-board-the casino is so smoke-filled and many of the lounges are, too. Be sure to get ice show tickets-they did a nice job and the earlier tickets go fast! Day 2 was Napoli. We did extensive research before the cruise and did every shore excursion on our own. It went very smoothly, they got us back to the ship in plenty of time and it was so much better than what we heard other's did with the ship's excursions-the cost is also a fraction of what you'd pay through RCI! Amalfi Coast was amazing! See port reviews for details. Day 3 Rome. It's impossible to do everything in one day but by using our own private tour we saw so much and had a van that took us around the city. Day 4 Pisa and Florence. Pisa isn't much other than the tower but good to see. We again had a private driver and got a tour of an olive-oil factory, a drive through Tuscany, and shopping in Florence! Thanksgiving dinner that night was REALLY BAD-the food was terrible! Day 5 Villefranche/Nice. We were tendered in and found the train to Nice or Monaco with relative ease. Do your research and it's easy to do. Nice has a nice outdoor market in the morning and tons of cafes for lunch. Day 6 Suppose to go to Marseille but strike caused us to dock in Toulon. Only time used ship's excursion-took a motor coach into Aix en Provence. Cute little town with cafes and shopping. Make sure to know some French-not many speak English at all. That evening we sailed back to Barcelona and it was very rough-we really felt the waves throughout the night. Disembarkation was very easy-we had early flights out of the airport and got there in plenty of time. Luggage right there and we had a private company take us to airport-it was a breeze! Overall it was a great family trip. We really used the ship as our "floating hotel" and loved seeing all the ports. It gave us a taste of the areas we want to return to-would cruise again only to see another region in the same fashion. Read Less
Sail Date November 2009
Pre cruise- flew to Barcelona via Easyjet from Liverpool the day before embarkation - had a good day in Barcelona despite being moved hotels on arrival- stayed at the H10 Marina - nice hotel not far from underground and buses - easy to get ... Read More
Pre cruise- flew to Barcelona via Easyjet from Liverpool the day before embarkation - had a good day in Barcelona despite being moved hotels on arrival- stayed at the H10 Marina - nice hotel not far from underground and buses - easy to get to the centre - on day of embarkation took a 10 mins taxi ride to the port - cost 21 euro Embarkation - checked in on line so checking in was smooth and we were on the boat by 12.45 - by the time we had been to the windjammer for lunch our luggage had been delivered - had inside cabin for the first time ( 3rd time we have cruised with RCI) perfectly adequate although I didnt like waking not knowing what the weather was like - our stateroom attendant Dennis introduced himself and kept the cabin immaculate (a sign of the times - no chocolate on the pillow at night and there is no midnight buffet) Food - ate in the Windjammer for breakfast and lunch - always plenty of choice -loved the omelette maker - food always warm and the service was good Magic Flute dining room- booked My Time Dining as the early sitting was full when we booked the cruise - found no problem with this as long as we booked in advance - by Tuesday we had reserved a table for 2 for the rest of the cruise at 7pm and this worked out perfectly for us - the food was as good as on previous cruises - the previous reviewer stated that lobster was not served - RCI normally serve this on a Thursday but as on this cruise Thanksgiving was on Thursday lobster was on the menu on Friday !! - quite a big deal was made of Thanksgiving on this cruise - 2 years ago we sailed Liberty of the Seas at Thanksgiving in the caribbean and it was hardly mentioned !! Shows - not bad - not keen on the production shows but liked the ice dancing show and the clown in the final sow - Mercedes the cruise director was good and very enthusiastic - Karoke in Cleopatras lounge not as well supported as on previous cruises - as for the music in the pub/bars - pretty poor - did however like High Notes - enjoyed the latin band and dancing in there - the parades in the Royal Promenade very good The ship itself is kept very clean - we enjoyed the gym everyday and as most of our tours were afternoon starts - we were able to use the jacuzzis and had them to ourselves most of the time which was great - the weather all week was good - the sun was out a lot and we saw no rain which was unexpected Leaving the ship - very smooth - had booked a transfer through the ship to the airport - $30 per person = we were were called off the ship at 8.15 - our luggage was on the belt for collection and we walked straight on the bus All in all this cruise was excellent value for money and highly recommended Read Less
Sail Date November 2009
Cruise Review: Day 1: Barcelona - Flew out the day prior on a "red eye" to Barcelona. We arrived in around 8:40am. The Barcelona airport has to be one of the most modern airports I have ever been too. Very nice airport and easy ... Read More
Cruise Review: Day 1: Barcelona - Flew out the day prior on a "red eye" to Barcelona. We arrived in around 8:40am. The Barcelona airport has to be one of the most modern airports I have ever been too. Very nice airport and easy to get around, so there is no problem for those who do not have the Spanish Language down. Please keep in mind that the Barcelona Bag service is very slow compared to most major airports in America. It took about an hour to get our bags. This was mentioned as a common thing for this airport. I tell you this for folks who are planning drivers to pick them up or when taking private yours. We left for our hotel - The Renaissance Hotel at the Barcelona Airport. The hotel is only about five minutes from the airport. We took a cab - which there is a minimum charge from the airport per our driver. You pretty much can get ripped off when going to your hotel from the airport. Planning ahead better, the hotel does free pick up service to the hotel from the airport. The hotel was great and English speaking friendly. The service is very nice and the rooms are very nice. Be careful with late night TV if you have children. They have channels that go into adult programming without any pay per view. It is just their TV. The food at the hotel is expensive, but typical for a hotel. Location of the hotel is no where near any attractions or other places to see anything. It is best to take a cab into town. I highly recommend this hotel. I would give it a 4 star rating and they have 10 euro transfers to the cruise port. Once at the hotel, we rested some to prepare for a tour. www.barcelonadaytours.com. I checked many different tour companies and individual guides and I choose these guys. Carlos was our tour guide. I recommend everything about Carlos and his tour company. Very friendly and spoke English very well. He was extremely professional. After two days of tours with him, he was like a family member. He was always on time for all our tours. Our first tour was a four hour tour of Barcelona. Carlos picked us up from the Hotel and took us to see many of the cities site. He toured at our pace. He knew we wanted to see the most in the time we had, he did just that. We started with a tour in the Olympic park. He let us take pictures or access the restroom whenever we needed. We stopped at the city center building in down town - there was an incredible art exit and a beautiful coliseum in this building. We left from there to drop by the castle on the hill that overlooks the cruise port along with other Olympic park sites. The views were amazing. Barcelona is very clean for a port city. You could see the pride Carlos took in his city. After this, we took off for La Sagrada Familia Church. The church is absolutely amazing take on Gothic architecture. We did not want to go in, so we did a walk around tour. There is a lot of traffic here, so take all of the advice about putting money and ids on a money belt or in your front pocket. As we were warned many times about pick pocketers, we did not have any issues. We do know of one couple that a person asked them if this was his water, while the other took a purse that was on the other side. Just use common sense and you will be fine. We went to Park Guell and took a walk through of that with photos. We went down Las Rambles where we saw all of the street activity. It was a very fun area. Lots of things to see or do. Our tour guide then took us back to the hotel on time. The cost for four for the four hours was 69 euros each. Excellent price! We rested some more at the hotel and then took off to see Tablos Flemenco show on the Ramblas. We took a cab to show which cost us about 20 euro. The show was fantastic. There was a small stage and very intimate feel. The dancers were amazing along with the music. Kids may be bored with it. If you like dancing, then you will like this show. It is very powerful. The 7:15 show was the middle one. We then took a cab to Cal Pep for dinner http://www.calpep.com/english/index_eng.html. This is a highly reviewed restaurant. It is very popular for lunch and dinner. Definitely get reservations and sit in the back room. It only holds about 20 people very snug. There is no menu. They serve you a series of interesting taplas. The food is very fresh and allows for a slow and wonderful meal. If you are picky, you might not like it. If you love food adventures - this is your place. It was an awesome experience. English friendly too. We took a cab back to the hotel. Note about Food : Do not worry about food in Barcelona. Talpas bars are everywhere. Remember that they eat the big meal for lunch around 1-3pm. Dinner typically does not start until after 8:30pm. It typically consists of Talpas. Talpas - meaning the top - simply means appetizers. Much like you choose sushi from a menu, talpas are the same way. Sometime you just sit down and they bring food to you. Tourist area restaurants are more expensive. Day 2: Barcelona We got up for a 9 hour tour with Carlos. He picked us up at 9:30. We went to take a tour of the Cava (Champagne) plant. The facility was huge. They sell product all over the world. It is the best tour of a facility that I have ever been through. You go through the whole process and actually have a ride through near the end prior to the tasting. Highly recommend this if production or wine fascinates you. We left the wine and headed for the Montserrat Mountain. It took about an hour. Near the top, our tour guide gave us time to explore the town. It is a small village and church that is situated on the side of the mountain. It was a little overcast for a bit, but we were above the clouds. Definitely take the train to the top so you can see a 360 view of the mountain. Beautiful views that alone are worth it. Another thing many people do is listening to the children's choir at 1:00. They were not singing that day due to the wedding. I am not Catholic, but the Black Madonna story is very interesting. The food at the food cafe is actually pretty good and not too expensive. Good lunch stop. We then headed back into town and visited the finshed Gowdy church closer into Barcelona. It was beautiful also. A fantastic day that cost 99 euros each for four people. Note on tipping. Tipping is given as a gratuity and is not always expected. 7-10% is standard if the service was really good. We tipped Carlos much more in appreciation of his services. After we got back, we rested and went to a very nice restaurant recommended called http://www.botafumeiro.es/indexen.htm Botafumeiro. It was very nice and the service was very good. The food is very fancy and there is a menu. It is English friendly. The food is expensive and much of the seafood is based on market price. Note... My family loved it. The problem I had was the King crab is served cold, not warm with butter. Not my favorite, but still, everyone else liked it a whole lot. We took a cab back to the hotel. Day 3: Starting the Cruise We slept late and made arrangements to take the bus to the cruise terminal. We left about 15 minutes after 11:00 am. The port process was extremely smooth. They took the bags right from the bus and put them on the ship. You walk just a few step and you are in the terminal. The terminal is very organized and nice. They opened up the ship and started calling groups on the ship within about 15 minutes from getting there. You simply go with your group and get on the ship. Very easy process. There is even a spot to get euros in the terminal. Once on the ship, you have free roam except for the cabins. The cabins were ready at 3:00pm. The ship is huge and beautiful. This was the 10 year celebration of this ship. There was even a birthday cake given out for the celebration. The ship was recently in a fix up. The ship still feels new to me. I love the promenade on the 5th floor. We had a balcony cabin 7626 which looks back from the ship on the little "hump" that sticks out. A little larger balcony. The rooms are similar to other RCL balcony cabins. Very little sign of wear. Check this out - NO MORE LIFE PRESERVERS NEEDED DURING MUSTER DRILL. You just go to your spot and they do the announcements. Little lengthy due to the requirement to have it in both English and Spanish. We ate at the late seating at 9:00pm. We had Wilmar and Manual. They provided excellent service the entire cruise. They would try to help with any special request they could. The dining room is amazing. The bottom two floors of the dinning room are for regular eating guest. The top floor is for My time dining guests. This is where you set up a reserved time to eat. We love this ship! Day 4: Day at see Simply slept late to catch up on sleep and played in a Casino that kept taking our money. Due to this, we did not play much. Day 5: Napoli We did the full day excursion to Sorrento and Pompeii. Absolutely amazing trip. Pompeii was huge. I always book my excursions through the cruise ship. I know many others do not, but there is something very secure for us to go through the ship. There is a simple guarantee of getting back to the ship on time. I have seen too many folks waving as the ship left them at a port. There is some driving with this excursion. If you get car sick easily - avoid going to Sorrento. Lots of winding roads. Beautiful views! You will walk in Pompeii - definitely uneven paths. Day 6: Rome Amazing day in Rome. Full day Imperial Rome Excursion. This was awesome. Definitely walking with uneven paths. This seem to be the most work for a tour. The Coliseum was amazing. You get to see the Forums - walk through them. You get to see tons of buildings and ruins. You end the tour with a great trip to the Vatican. You can take flash photos in the Vatican. No chance to see the Michelangelo Painting unfortunately. (God and Man finger touch) It was not part of the tour. Great tour! Lots of bus time and it is the longest tour of our trip. Day 7: Florence and Pisa Another full day great tour. Awesome tour - lots of walking - through the city with a lunch. Beautiful cathedrals and historic buildings. Lunch is good to and is provided. Pisa has to be experienced. It sticks out in the small town of Pisa. There is a lot of bus time on this, but definitely worth it. We had some nice shopping time. There were some great Italian purses shops and other leather shops here. We got a Italian Leather purse in one of the nice stores. Day 8: Monte Carlo, French Riviera Tour, Eze, Nice Half day bus tour of the French Riviera. The views were amazing. This was mainly a bus tour with picture stops. You see a lot and travel up and down the mountains. If you get car sick easily, you might want to watch this one. Lots of winding roads. You get to spend about an hour and half in the town of Eze which is one of the hill top towns. Very pretty. Day 9: Marseilles - this was changed... The port was change due to a possible port strike in Marseilles. We stopped at a different port, but still took the same tour. We did the Cassis tour which was a lot of fun. The highlight had to be going to the top of the mountains for pictures and looking down on Cassis. We spent about two hours in the town of Cassis for free time. This was nice. We did a little shopping. Ate some Crepes. Lots of local tourist hanging around. Nice little cafes. Day 10: Back in Barcelona The Debarkation went the best ever. They give you the time and you can hang out in your room instead of random places. Prior to your time, you head to the given area where they will lead you out and through customs. No issues with getting luggage. The hotel had a van out there to take us back to the Marriott. We waited about 20 minutes for the bus - no problem. Cost 10 Euros each. We left out early evening using a cab to walk down the Rambles. At the north end, there is a Hard Rock Cafe. We ate there and had a good time. We took a cab back to the hotel for about 20 Euros. Day 11: Flying back home Show up early!!!! The lines can be long and wacky - especially if you are using Air France. I used the ticket machines - they only have 3! If I would of waited in line, I would not have made it with in the 3 hours. The airport was very nice, just understaffed. We got back safely. This was one of our favorite cruises! It was not meant to be relaxing. We "hit it and get it" so we can see as much as possible. We spent just over 1000.00 for the two of us on the five tours. It was a trip of a lifetime. We are excited about taking a Easter Med cruise next time so we can hit Venice. We loved France a lot! It is a much cleaner country. Too much graffiti around Italy. Barcelona - definitely spend two days there if possible. It is a beautiful city. Be sure to use www.BarcelonaDayTours.com. Read Less
Sail Date November 2009
This is a combined review of consecutive cruises starting with the Mediterranean cruise from Barcelona of Nov 22nd, 2008 and the transatlantic crossing to Galveston on Nov 29th. I have completed 18 cruises with Royal Caribbean and am a ... Read More
This is a combined review of consecutive cruises starting with the Mediterranean cruise from Barcelona of Nov 22nd, 2008 and the transatlantic crossing to Galveston on Nov 29th. I have completed 18 cruises with Royal Caribbean and am a Diamond Plus member. Prior to the cruise, I stayed at the Continental Palacete Hotel which was wonderful. Their 24 hour buffet which includes beer and wine was greatly appreciated! Check in was exceptionally fast and as it was after 1.00pm, I was able to go straight to my cabin - 9690, a corner aft cabin. Our first port was Villefranche where we tendered. I took the local bus to Nice for 1 euro each way. Livorno was the next port. As I have previously visited Florence and Pisa, I took the Royal Caribbean canal boat ride around Livorno which was interesting. Rather than go into Rome from Civitavecchia, I took the Royal Caribbean excursion to Odescalchi Castle in Bracciano. Tom Cruise was married there. It was a good excursion and I enjoyed it a lot. In Naples, I walked around and visited the National Archaeological Museum (costs10 euros). I highly recommend visiting this museum. I also walked all the way up to the Castel Sant' Elmo where for 3 euros, you get a wonderful view of the city and Mount Vesuvius. In Palermo, I walked around the town ending up at the Catacombs. 1.50 euros to enter. There are hundreds of bodies on display and it is quite creepy. Certainly not a place to take kids! We had a day at sea before returning to Barcelona. As we were there for the day, we did a private tour to Montserrat which was fantastic. We were given our new Seapass cards prior to the end of the cruise and our cabin steward moved the luggage so the changeover was easy. For the transatlantic crossing, I had Junior Suite 7694 in the aft. Our first port was Cartegena, a lovely small town that had their Christmas festival going on. Friendly people and a nice place to just walk around and explore. They handed out free liquor samples in 50ml bottles (which Royal Caribbean kept for you when you got back onto the ship!) In Madeira, we had a private tour that included a wonderful lunch near Camacha followed by Madeira wine tasting. Our next port was Santa Cruz in the Canary Islands which like Cartegena is small and easy to walk around by oneself. Then, we had six relaxing sea days before arriving in Nassau, then Miami and finally Galveston. These were two wonderful cruises and I enjoyed both of them. I have 11 more cruises booked (10 with Royal Caribbean and 1 with Celebrity) so you can see that I like Royal Caribbean. They provide a great product at a great price. The Concierge lounge is certainly a perk that keeps bringing me back. It's not just the free drinks but also the wonderful atmosphere talking to everyone each night. Here are a few comments in no particular order: • Bill Brunkhorst was the Cruise Director on both cruises. He is one of my favorite cruise directors and it was a nice surprise to find him onboard. • The crew on Voyager are terrific especially my cabin stewards Ray from Costa Rica and Elimar from the Philippines. Concierge Martin Sanchez did a good job considering there were 480 Diamond and Diamond plus members on the transatlantic crossing. • The ice shows are amazing - I went three times! I am always so impressed with the jumps and spins that they do while the ship is moving. A very talented group. • In most ports, one is able to walk into town but in some ports, Royal Caribbean provide shuttles - Livorno ($12), Madeira ($12), Miami ($15 to Bayside and South Beach). In Civitavecchia, the port provided a free shuttle. I would like Royal Caribbean to either provide free transportation or at least inform passengers before the cruise of these extra expenses. Many passengers were upset about docking far from town and being forced to pay for transportation. • Royal Caribbean hosted Cruise Critic Meet & Mingle parties on both cruises. There were well over 200 of us on the transatlantic cruise. Cruise Director Bill attended both events and I even won the fabled Wave Mouse in one of the draws. I do greatly appreciate Royal Caribbean's support of Cruise Critic. • If you go to Madeira, look out for the local drink called Poncha - rum with honey and lemon. It is fantastic and is especially good if you have a sore throat (or think you might get one!). 8 euros for a litre bottle. • Smoking was still allowed in the Casino all the time and on balconies. I wish they would stop the smoking on balconies. I had a pipe smoker on the balcony beside me and it affected my enjoyment of my balcony. Also wish they would restrict smoking when trivia (and other events) are held in the Schooner Bar and other lounges. • In addition to the usual parties and events, Royal Caribbean hosted a party for just the Diamond Plus members. It was nice to receive that extra recognition. • Food in the dining room was very good. I enjoyed Portofinos on both visits. Windjammer for dinner was excellent but I sometimes struggled with the choices at lunch. • We cleared US immigration in Miami which was a slow process but certainly made things easy when we docked in Galveston - we just walked off the ship there. • Certainly a highlight were the excellent lectures held during the transatlantic crossing. Ronald Bowers' Hollywood Murder lectures were exceptional. I do hope Royal Caribbean continue these on transatlantic crossings Thank you Royal Caribbean for two wonderful cruises. The more I cruise, the more I realize that it is the people you meet that defines your cruise experience and makes cruising so enjoyable. Long may the Concierge lounge continue! Read Less
Sail Date November 2008
Voyager of the Seas Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.3
Dining 4.0 3.8
Entertainment 4.0 3.8
Public Rooms 4.5 4.2
Fitness Recreation 5.0 4.1
Family 5.0 4.1
Shore Excursion 3.5 3.5
Enrichment 3.0 3.4
Service 4.5 4.2
Value For Money 4.0 3.8
Rates N/A 4.2

Find a Voyager of the Seas Cruise

Easily compare prices from multiple sites with one click