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Shelley Berman

Age: 49

Occupation:Teacher

Number of Cruises: 1

Cruise Line: Royal Caribbean

Ship: Navigator of the Seas

Sailing Date: 2009-07-5

Itinerary: Western Mediterranean

An absolutely awesome experience. We loved every minute of the whole week and really had nothing to complain about. The ship itself is magnificent and the staff couldn't do enough for us. The ports of call were beautiful and we saw new places and met interesting people.

We ordered kosher food and therefore are not able to comment on the regular food served, other than to say when I saw the variety on offer it was the first time in my life that being kosher made me feel a little deprived. The food all looked amazing and if it tasted only half as good as it looked it had to have been excellent. The kosher meals were tasty and we really appreciated the trouble our head waiter went to to ensure we had kosher food every day, served with 'plastic silver', as he called it. However we would have enjoyed a little more variety in our meals. We were served the same few things over and over. Nonetheless, we were never hungry. At breakfast we were able to eat a lot of the cereals, fruit and smoked salmon. All in all, I cannot complain about the food as I was warned in advance by the agent that the kosher food would not be like the regular food. I have to compliment our waiter and assistant waiter as well, as they were at our beck and call and nothing was too much trouble for them.

We had an inside room, number 9593 on deck 9. It was a little small and cramped for 2 adults, and the shower was minute, but I suppose that is to be expected. Even though it was small, the room was very compact and well fitted. The bed was spacious and very comfortable, with crisp fresh linen. There was ample storage space for clothes, shoes, toiletries etc. I particularly liked the hair drier and the safe. Our stateroom attendant was amazing. I think he went into our room every time we left it to replace used towels with clean ones, straighten up and every night we had little animals from cleverly folded towels. The room and bathroom were spotlessly clean at all times. I also liked the bright lighting and constant supply of fresh ice in an ice bucket. Being inside and not having a window did not bother us at all.

There was just so much to do that we did not even see everything. The entertainment in the evenings was lovely. We especially enjoyed the ice show and the Beatlmaniacs show. During the day if one is so inclined there is always the gym, the spa, the pools and jacuzzis, the sports facilities ,the casino and the list goes on and on. You simply cannot complain of boredom on this ship as there is always something to do. If all else fails you can even go to the library and read a book. However, most days by the time we got back from exploring the ports we were so tired that we were happy to just relax at the pool.

We only did one excursion through the ship, and found it a bit of a let down as we were constantly being herded on and off a bus and preferred doing our own thing. They were also quite expensive. In 2 of the ports we got a taxi - there are always lots of them around as you get off the ship, offering tours - and we really enjoyed this. It was quite expensive, but we got to see what WE wanted to see and go where We wanted to go. The taxi drivers were very knowledgeable and told us what our options were and then we chose where to go. We were also able to stop in the places that interested us and stay as long as we wanted to. These were definitely our best 2 days. Another useful tip - one day we teamed up with 3 other couples and shared a tour in a minibus designed for eight and shared the cost. This worked out quite cheap and was very enjoyable and also quite flexible. We just aren't the kind of people who enjoy rigid organized excursions. On 2 days we went into the city and took open top bus tours which also were much cheaper than the ship's excursions. This is a good way of seeing the main sights.

We departed from Rome and docked in Genoa, Villefranche, Barcelona, Mallorca and Cagliari in Sardinia. We then returned to Rome. As we had never been to any of these places before, they were all interesting for us. On the day we got back to Rome we booked a hotel in Rome for the night and had the whole day to explore Rome, which was wonderful. I don't know if I'm allowed to mention the hotel's name, but I will as I can honestly recommend it. Crosti Hotel on Via Castelfidardo was spotlessly clean, modern, very central and relatively inexpensive.
Our overall cruise experience was wonderful. I would highly recommend Navigator of the Seas and we enjoyed every aspect of the trip.

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