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Royal CaribbeanExplorer the SeasEastern CaribbeanDave O'Brien

Age: 33


Number of Cruises: 1

Cruise Line: Royal Caribbean

Ship: Explorer of the Seas

Sailing Date: September 4th, 2005

Itinerary: NOT FOUND

Royal Caribbean
Explorer of the Seas
Eastern Caribbean

Dave O'Brien

My wife and I were first-time cruisers and did a significant amount of research (including reading 50+ reviews on this site) before finally deciding on Royal Caribbean's Explorer of the Seas. We selected the Eastern Caribbean itinerary becuase we really wanted to visit St.Maarten and Nassau.

We went to Miami a day early so that we would not be rushed, I would strongly recommend doing this if you can, it made a big difference on embarkation day.

We did the internet pre-registration check-in and printed out our "set sail" pass which gave us priority boarding. I would recommend that you do this if you can, you easily save 2 hours waiting in line before getting on the ship.

Our booklet said to arrive for boarding at 2:00pm. We read that they often let people on early, so we showed up at 11:30 and were on the ship by 12:15 (includes luggage drop off, security clearance and seapass registration). This gave us about 4 hours to explore the ship before the hoards of people arrived.

The ship is absolutely gorgeous, with plenty of amenities and activites to keep everyone busy.

High Points:
- The ship's interior was first rate, with no signs of use or wear. The interior was really beautiful.

- The signature Rock Wall is an absolute must, I would suggest going early to avoid crowds and the heat.

- Everything else...this was a great ship and had gorgeous ports of call!

Low Points:
- Lines at the WinJammer and Island Grill were very long and there was rarely a place to sit at peak periods. I would suggest eating later if you can wait.

- The main pool area was filled with kids splashing despite the no diving signs. I suggest using the Adult pool in the solarium area.

- Many of the staff had difficulty understanding English, so be sure to repeat your request if you suspect that they didn't catch it the first time around.

In summary this was an absolutely fantastic vacation, and I would highly recommend it to anyone considering a cruise versus a resort all-inclusive style vacation. Crusing for my wife and I is the only kind of vacation we will do going forward! Enjoy.

Dave and Kristy O'Brien
St-Eustache, Quebec, Canada

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