I was on Elation Sept 24, 2006. It was fabulous! The tender for Half Moon Cay wasn't too bad, not a lot of waiting around. We rented a Hobi Cat while we were there (needed our sail & sign card) for $50--2 hours (up to 4 people total so it wasn't a bad deal!) and we got STUCK!! It was easy to go out, coming back wasn't so easy & they wound up towing us and two others back! It was still a great time, BBQ was awesome!
Grand Turk was beautiful, we did the Island Bus Loop and it took us to all of the best locations on the island for around 30 or 40 bucks. The lighthouse is definitely something to see if you're into beautiful scenery, and make sure you walk the two trails while you're there. We wound up at Margaritaville for lunch then sat on the beach until it was time to go.
San Juan we went on a small bus tour for about $10 each, it was well worth the money & we just happened to find the driver outside of the port terminal as we got off the ship. We then took a ferry boat across for 50 cents each way and did the Bacardi factory tour (free), and ended with lunch at Senior Frogs (where I had the YARD of Strawberry Daquiri yum!!) If you buy liquor in that port don't buy anything at Bacardi except for the one they only sell at their gift shop. We bought some mixed drinks (hurricanes, etc) for $8 a bottle at Bacardi then found them for $4 in the port. And there are free samples galore here. Two at Bacardi, then tons in the port liquor store areas. Add in Senior Frog's and the repeater's party that night and I would say that was our "drinking day!"
St Thomas was the best of all. We went to Coral World, and asked our driver ("GREEN EYES") to be back at 2pm to pick us up. He took us on the scenic route back to the ship & stopped at an overlook where we could view the port--absolutely breathtaking! Once back at the port 3 of us (we had 8 total in our group) went on the skyride to Paradise Point. Another beautiful view and if you're a mixed beverage drinker try the Bailey's Bushwacker. They also sell a "Bailey's Bushwacker Kit" of the 6 liquors plus a couple other ingredients for 50 bucks, we kicked ourselves for not getting that!
The sea days were great. We were upgraded to oceanview staterooms and loved them! Our stateroom attendant was great--Mr Hernandez!! He allowed us to keep our "zoo" of towel animals throughout our week HA!! (Yeah, we're in our 30's but we still loved them!!)
There was a medical emergency that cause our ship to stop in Nassau the first night (rumor was someone had a heart attack & didn't make it unfortunately!) And for a day or two they had planned on taking us to Nassau instead of Half Moon Cay. We all love Nassau (actually I love Paradise Island) but they changed back to Half Moon Cay & I'm glad we went there.
Anyway, that's about it. Elation was the same layout as Fantasy & Fascination, just different colors and themes. I'm going on Victory in 13 days and can't wait. (Taking my kids on that one!!)
Sovereign of the Seas, Royal Caribbean 11-17-03
Fascination, CCL 2-14-05
Fantasy, CCL 2-05-06
Elation, CCL 9-24-06
Carnival Victory, CCL 1-28-07
Sovereign of the Seas, Royal Caribbean, 9-24-07