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Carol ley

Age: 32

Occupation:Homemaker

Number of Cruises: 5

Cruise Line: Royal Caribbean

Ship: Explorer of the Seas

Sailing Date: February 22nd, 2003

Itinerary: Eastern Caribbean

Carol Shipley

Just got back from the Explorer and had a wonderful time!!! It was great! The ship was out of this world…very clean, well maintained, beautiful! We are sad to be back on shore b/c we had such a great time but I’ll try and capture my most memorable moments.

Boarding- we arrived around 12:30 and we were on the ship by 1pm. The lines were a bit long but it moved fairly quickly. We went straight to our room to check it out and it was great. This is the first time we had a balcony and we highly suggest it. The room was very spacious with lots of closet and drawer space. The balconies were very private and I thought very spacious. After we got settled, we went to explore the ship and had a nice lunch in the Windjammer. The food was good – I’ve had better on Royal Caribbean but I think it’s just b/c it has to cater to so many people. But, nonetheless, we ate like small pigs and everything was very tasty. The dining rooms are very nice and elegant and we had a great table with 3 other couples. A lot of them were first time cruisers and they were having a ball – I think if this was my first cruise, I would never want to cruise on anything else b/c this ship had it all.

We went back to our cabin to take a little siesta and we heard a knock on the door and it was our luggage – so we were really surprised b/c other reviews I read – it seems like you can wait all day before you get your luggage and we got it in about 2 hours?! So, we were happy and after our nap, we unpacked and went exploring some more!

Our first day at sea, we went exploring – it’s so big that it takes awhile to explore everywhere but we tried. They have so many activities and fun things to do that you cannot get bored. My husband climbed the rock wall – he thought it was a lot of fun. The day we were at sea, it was very windy so we didn’t get to play putt putt or rollerblade. But, there is definitely a lot to do.

My favorite spot on the ship was the Solarium. It’s so nice and elegant. I loved going here to just relax or take a nap. The shipshape center and spa were very nice and had everything you could imagine. The Promenade deck is out of this world – it’s amazing how they put a small city on a boat but they did! It was really a sight to see – and I loved all the shops and little cafes to eat at – it was really just like being in an European city.

Our first stop was Puerto Rico and we didn’t do much but walk around. It’s not one of my favorite islands and I doubt we would have even gotten off the boat but I wanted to walk around a little. We were only there a couple of hours and then back to sea we went to St. Maarten.

On St. Maarten we rented mopeds and toured the island. This was a lot of fun and a very relaxing day. We went to Orient Beach and swam, then over to St. Louis fort (very nice view) and then back to the ship. It was fun but if you aren’t an experienced rider – I wouldn’t suggest it just b/c the roads are very narrow and the cars tend to tailgate. But, it was a blast.

The next day we were in St. Thomas and my husband and I went scuba diving. This was a lot of fun – Coki Dive Club did the dive with us – they were great – I had never been before and they gave us a 20 minute course and then some lessons in the water and off we went. It was very relaxing for something so scary! But, we had a great time and did some snorkeling there as well.

Then we were at sea again and knew that our cruise was almost over. We had a good day at sea – just took it easy, layed by the pool, ate at Johnny Rockets (this place is great for hamburgers, onion rings and french fries).

The next day we were in the Bahamas and I’ve been there so much that there wasn’t any place I wanted to see or go – so we just walked around the shops and looked for good bargains. Then, off to the ship again for our last night on board.

We went to all the shows and the ice skating show is fantastic. It’s unbelievable what they can do on that ring. We liked all the shows for the most part, my husband isn’t big on musicals but they actually had some music that he liked so it wasn’t too bad. The comedians were very good and our cruise director was very good.

Some may or may not have heard but on this cruise we actually had a fire on board. It happened while we were sleeping (3am) and no fire alarms went off or anything like that but the next morning, the captain made an announcement about the fire. Nothing was said how it started or what exactly happened but he just said that it was under control and there wasn’t concern for the passengers. So, my husband and I thought that it was probably just a small trash fire or something but when we went to go see the damage the entire back end of the ship was burnt! It was wild – the windows had blown out, the metal railing had been warped and burned, it looked bad from what we could tell. But, they started to fix it the next day, re-painting and putting boards up, etc. I doubt the cruise after ours were able to rollerblade or putt putt but I’m not sure.

Everything was wonderful and we had a great experience. If anyone has any questions or want to know more details, just email me. I highly recommend this ship!!!! I can’t wait to go back!!!!!!!!!!

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