Number of Cruises: First Cruise
Cruise Line: Royal Caribbean
Ship: Grandeur of the Seas
Sailing Date: February 22nd, 2002
Itinerary: Circle Caribbean 10 day-5 ports
The Windjammer buffet restaurant was in full swing by the time we unpacked and we were hungry so we had our fill of hot food, sandwiches, salads, fresh fruit, soups plus plenty of desserts from cakes to ice cream to chose from.
Our main dining room experience was excellent. We had the late dinnertime (8:30pm) which we chose because we didn't want to rush back from any exploring in ports. It gave us time to nap (naps are good on vacation) shower, dress and have cocktail before joining our dinner companions who were from England and a joy to be with.
Our waiters were attentive and the food was good, not great but good. I would never complain considering the number of dinners they put out in a sitting and they offered a wide variety of choices. I was actually quite impressed. I would have love to seen the kitchen operation.
The ship always seemed to have something going on if you want to join in on the fun and for all ages. They have a children and teenage center (my son was too old but it looked nice). They had bingo games, art auctions (which was quite fun and we picked up a great picture!), spa, saunas, poolside games, upper deck games (shuffleboard, etc) or just lounging by one of the two pools. All of us took advantage of the fitness facility. It was also quite impressive. They had Cybex weight machines, free weights, a small aerobic/yoga studio, Stairmaster, elliptical trainers, bicycling machines and probably 8 treadmills. It sure helped me keep down the weight gain!
I would recommend this ship to anyone. The Royal Caribbean staff did an excellent job of taking care of their passengers and providing a full range of entertainment, very professional.
Ports of Call
We stopped at Cozumel first and since we were traveling with our 18 yr old son. We were looking for adventure and decided on the shore excursion in the 4x4 jeep to the DePalma Ruins and then to the beach for a Mexican Buffet and swimming. Everyone had a blast. My son drove the jeep and had a great time making his me scream in the back seat for all the bumps and puddles for splashing. The beach was beautiful and secluded. They provided soda, blankets and palm covered umbrella stands for protection. The food was delicious. They grilled chicken & beef fajitas, corn chips, fresh guacamole dip and fresh salsa (hot or mild) plus fresh fruit of pineapple, banana and melons. The guides were friendly, a comfortable atmosphere and great fun.
The next stop was Grand Cayman, a very lovely town with lots of shopping for all you shoppers out there. Oh, I forgot to mention another great item Royal Caribbean provided was a get together in their theatre before each port with a Shopping Guide. This fellow helped explain what to look for in jewelry, recommended places for shopping (whether it was diamond, tanzanite or t-shirts for friends back home) They ship always provided maps of the area before each stop, a BIG plus in my book.
Next was Jamaica, it was not my favorite. Our stop was in Montego Bay and the shops were just OK.
On to Aruba, what a great town. I really spent some money there! I found a wonderful pearl shop called Pearl Gems and bought a beautiful pair of Tahiti black pearl earrings. The woman working in the shop was great fun and very helpful, her name was Cheryl. She even made dinner reservations for us at the Driftwood for seafood dinner in town.
We also went on a sailing/snorkeling tour on a catamaran. It was about 3 hours long and made two stops. One stop was along shore and it had a good variety of tropical fish and then next stop was at a wreck a little farther out and that was very exciting to swim over top of a ship. You could even see divers beneath us the water was so clear. On the way back they put on the music and made some rum drinks and we enjoyed the sunshine!
Our last stop was Curacao. This was another lovely town. The buildings are painted in lovely bright summer colors and the architecture was unique. We explored the floating market, shops and even went further into the city to test a variety of beers. We felt very comfortable exploring anywhere and they people were quite friendly and helpful.
Out of all the stops our favorites were Aruba and Curacao.
We spent the last two days at sea heading back to Miami. We were never bored and we will certainly take another cruise with Royal Caribbean.