Number of Cruises: 1
Cruise Line: Royal Caribbean
Ship: Majesty of the Seas
Sailing Date: May 22nd, 2006
Royal Caribbean International
Majesty of the Seas Cruise Review
This was our first
cruise and we were somewhat skeptical, as to how much we would enjoy it.
However, it was very reasonably priced and the itinerary included Nassau, Coco
Cay (Royal Caribbean’s private island), and Key West.
Documentation from Royal Caribbean advised us not to board the ship on the departure date until 2:00pm. however, taking advice from this website, we arrived at the Port of Miami at 11:30am, and we were boarded within 40 minutes.
With access to our pleasing stateroom (floor 9), we quickly headed for Deck 11 for a welcoming cocktail (reasonably priced). Having heard reviews of big queues as the Windjammer Café, we anticipated a lengthy wait but we were eating within minutes.
The food in the Windjammer Café was of an excellent standard with a huge amount of choices – though somewhat more limited if traveling with vegetarians. Throughout our time on the Majesty of the Seas, the food in the Windjammer continued to be of good quality and the staff always helpful, unusual in a buffet environment.
Sailing on time at 5pm, we headed for Nassau. We dined on the third floor and were seated with 6 other passengers. Sharing stories of our holiday so far, this was far from the trauma we first imagined it might be. With good attentive service and quality food (smallish in portions but the waiters are more than happy to give you two choices should you wish), the dining experience was again good throughout our stay.
Having skipped the first night Latin flavored show, we headed for the disco which was a relatively fun 70s night, featuring a guest appearance by The Village People. Regrettably, not the original Village People, but various members of the cruise crew lead by Director Hamish, a really great guy, who did an excellent job throughout the holiday.
Arriving into Nassau on a cloudy day, we ventured down to the 3rd floor dining room for breakfast which was good but in hindsight going to the Windjammer Café was equally good and quicker.
On leaving the ship, we ignored the less than perfect weather and excitedly entered Nassau only to find it was crushingly disappointing as a town. Virtually every shop sold tacky t-shirts or “cheap” jewelry. Evidently a good proportion of the cruise felt this was a good way to spend the morning, but we were glad we booked an activity for the afternoon.
The “Yellowbird Boat” is a great way to spend three hours. Leaving Nassau and traveling across the harbor to one of the nearby islands, a very enjoyable hour is spent drinking free rum punch drinks and listening to a band. On arriving at the island, we had an hour to spend on the beach and ocean as the heaven’s opened. Departing back for Nassau, the party kicks in with a DJ, games, and plenty more free punch.
That evening it was formal night on the cruise and when not engaged in various (overpriced) photo opportunities, it was a nice way to spend the evening. The Schooner Bar is recommended for excellent service and a likeable character knocking out songs on the piano. We also took in the show, an entertaining comedian/magician - good fun. The evening ended on the humid deck and a big party at midnight, complemented by a buffet nobody really needed, but rather guiltily, we still dipped in.
With concern over how commercialized Coco Cay, Royal Caribbean’s private island, we were very presently surprised and this turned out to be the best day. Arriving on the island on one of the first boats from the cruise ship, we had a great hour lying in a hammock before moving onto more energetic activities.
We took to the Jet Skis for a 50 minute tour of the island, passing the cruise ship at relatively close proximity. This was out first time on Jet Skis and we naively thought it would be an easygoing affair but within a few minutes we were traveling at full speed, bouncing over waves and clinging on for dear life (or so it felt). Still, a great adrenaline rush and the guide was really helpful, telling stories of drug running in the region, and other interesting facts. A quick dash across the island and we joined the paragliding excursion, a surprisingly easygoing affairs (again we were first timers). Whilst our time up there was relatively short (5 minutes perhaps), the views were excellent and it was good fun.
Concluding Coco Cay with a good BBQ buffet and relaxation on the beach (where there was plenty of space), we joined the last boat back to the cruise ship for our third night on board. Due to the fact we were not scheduled to arrive at the next port until slightly later, we planned Wednesday to be a big party night. Beginning the evening with the reasonably good comedian, we had another pleasing meal before going to the Sky High lounge for a Latino band, more entertaining, for a few colorful characters heckling the band. With more drinks and exploring the various decks and bars over the course of the evening, we again visited the disco and realized the DJ was playing many of the same tunes as the first night. Heading down to the Paint Your Wagons bar, we watched some good karaoke, though it was evident that the same people hung around this place every night.
Key West was a really nice place – it had loads of character with great architecture and whilst certainly it was very much embracing the tourist industry, it was still an interesting place to spend the day.
The only activity we had scheduled in Key West was the Crazy Boat which may not sound particularly enticing or cultural … but it was hilarious. Bouncing around in the harbor on a boat spinning around and around, we all got completely soaked to the skin (as promised).
Exploring more of the town, we ate some Key Lime Pie, (which was delicious) before wandering over to the other end of the town and a picture opportunity at the very bottom of the USA. Skipping a few of the bars with dubious singer/songwriters, we had a good time at Fat Tuesdays – great frozen drinks – before returning to the ship. Evidentially many of the passengers had taken advantages of the various bars of Key West and were rather worse for thenwear … although the ship security ensured they were not too disruptive to the families on board.
The final evening was a more subdued affair – possibly because of the early departure time or equally because many of the passengers were sleeping off what they had drunk whilst in port. Despite this, we had a good final meal before retiring early to pack our bags. Disembarking the following morning was easy and as we had booked a final excursion to the Everglades (informative if a little brief), we were let off early than others (not a bad thing).
Overall, we enjoyed the cruise even if not everything was to our taste (where was the wide range of music promised?). Despite this, the food was excellent and plentiful and the staff were very helpful and polite throughout. We were on our honeymoon and Royal Caribbean were very generous in the package they gave us, including champagne, chocolate treats, photos, etc. Whilst we certainly would not cruise every holiday, it is certainly something we would consider again given this happy experience.