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Shore Excursions

Age: 46

Occupation:IT services and Logistics

Number of Cruises: 6

Cruise Line: Royal Caribbean

Ship: Freedom of the seas

Sailing Date: 2012-11-11

Itinerary: St Thomas

The cruise was a lot of fun with most of the credit belonging to all of the great passengers that joined this cruise. We have been on several cruises in which I will rank them by order of overall quality. Prior to that let measure you that no one n my family including me works for any cruise line. This ranking goes for quality, food,and entertainment that is provided by the ship or cruise line. Ranked #1 Disney Cruise line, ranked #2 Carnival cruise line, and Ranked #3 is Royal Caribbean cruise line.

This is the only area they really could improve on as they take a major hit based on selection and quality. I admit to being somewhat of a food critic. Breakfast every morning was exactly the same on the buffet menu. If you we're looking for fresh slice of bread you may not find it. You will find toast but it was extremely hard to eat . When comparing this cruise lines to others we find that we like the ability to go and get our own coffer and or hot chocolate when we wanted it. They did have staff constantly asking if you wanted anything or if everyone was ok. We just prefer to get some things as we wish. The lunch menu offered many of the same items throughout the cruise. The food did taste as if it were a mass produced. Examples it was noticed they offered grilled steak a lot but it always seemed to be tough with little to no seasoning.

I looked forward to the Cordon Bleu which was dry as I generally like to see the melted cheese ooze as I cut into it (it also lacked seasoning). The best food we had was at Chops we paid extra for that. Overall Chops was very good and the food was freshly cooked vs mass process.

Sometimes when you are out laying by the pool and or the hot tub tub (our idea of relaxing) you want something to munch on. This requires you to get up put a shirt and shoes on and to have to go inside to get anything. We have enjoyed other cruise lines where you can stand inline out by the pool to get something quick to quench your appetite. We bought the coke package and honestly we would have preferred having at least one or two more places to refill the cokes tabs having to wait in long lines at the at bar. The bar tenders were busy making drinks for others and it seemed they concentrated on those who were ordering alcohol more so than those that wanted come refill.

They did have a place called sprinkles to get ice cream cones out by the was not open near enough to be sufficient. I did enjoy it when I did use it and the ice cream tasted great. Johnny Rocket's upstairs was a bit disappointing. The hamburger did taste good but honestly if I was only going there for that I would have just went and got one at the Wind Jammer because they were always available. The staff did not dance to any song while I was there. Generally at any Johnny Rocket's you start off with some fries with a little white saucer(cardboard) that has a smiley face of ketchup for you while you are waiting for the fries. I was really looking forward to that. Not only did that not happen I did not get a refill on my fries that they offer. Honestly,I kinda felt cheated on that part of my Johnny Rocket's experience.

Our stateroom was actually not bad. It compared well to the others we have stayed at. We did however have to say that the layout (which they cannot change) is not done very well. One would think you old be able to go all the way down a hall to get to your stateroom. I some halls on this ship you can but not all of them. We did have great water pressure in our shower and Edvard our room attendant was excellent.

The outside pool parties rocked! As long as the weather was good. No other ship throws a party like they dido it by the pool. There is a caveat if your going across rough seas moving to Studio "B" Ice Skating Rink really had it's drawbacks (it's very cold in there).

I think for this cruise they did a good job on the activities and it would be hard in some aspects to raise the bar I with activities that included passenger participation. You had a comedian (Traci Kanaan) on the ship that really needed a bigger stage and probably another show or two. She was hilarious. Her facial expressions and musical talent ranked far above most comedians we have ever seen ( by the way we regularly go to the Comedy Club) this was the standard I ranked her against. she could be a rising star. We really did enjoy the different themes for dressing up. white night and formal night were a lot of fun and every one looked great.

We do not have a lot to say about this as we did venture out some and did not book any excursions. We did take one of the taxi cabs (a converted truck) from the port at St Maarten to the top of the mountain. We asked about cost on the way back and it was $25 per person. The whole ride may have been 10 miles if that. Let's just say always ask before you take a ride and oh by the way you can tell them you can get a cheaper taxi and they will negotiate the cost. I wish we had fund that out sooner vs later.

Overall our trip was really a lot of fun and one of the best we have been on. If you took the same passengers and offered us choice of a different cruise line I would have to say we would probably try a different one.

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