Just got back from our cruise on Majesty of the Seas. We had a great time! Here's a real quick review of our trip:
Nassau: went to Blackbeard's Cay for snorkeling and swimming with the stingrays. There weren't many people there, so we had the stingrays to ourselves (assuming because of the time of year). It was great! Snorkeling wasn't the best there; I don't know if there's a better place in Nassau for snorkeling??
Cococay: ...was cancelled; too much wind/waves for the tenders. It was too bad, because we went last year and had a blast. We also had some friends with us that had never been there, so we felt bad for them. I don't know how often this happens...maybe someone else can shed light on this (was it the time of year or just the breaks; I don't know). We made the most of it and had a great time on the ship that day.
Key West: our favorite port on this trip. We went on the Conch Train tour. I thought it was hokey, but several others seemed to enjoy it. It was a good, quick introduction to the city. However, if I was to do it again, I'd not purchase it through the ship and here's why: in Key West, US Customs officials board the ship and screen every single passenger before anyone is allowed to get off the ship. We waited an extra hour for one person who didn't go through customs (who will remain nameless). When we finally did have the opportunity to get off the ship, we had to wait because our excursion wasn't scheduled to leave for another 1/2 hour, and we were to gather in a designated place on the ship. So, we missed out on walking around Key West on our own before the excursion was ready to go. We also went on the Fury Catamaran Reef Snorkeling adventure...it was fun. However, the snorkeling wasn't the best this particular day. I have read, though, that the snorkeling off Key West is some of the best in the world; maybe we just hit it on a bad day. The friends we were with saw a baracuda and we heard another person that was with us saw a 6-foot shark (honestly, I'm glad I didn't see that!). We finished the day by walking around Key West and buying souvenirs and eating Key Lime pie (my personal highlight of the day).
the ship: great ship! A little upgrade from Sovereign of the Seas, but on par with that ship (and we loved the Sovereign). The staff was great and our waiter was very good. Our room attendant did a superb job. Every single staff member was helpful, courteous and friendly. Our room was in a great spot (4554); very quiet and the size was more than adequate. Our friends, however, didn't have a choice room. They had an inside room (2531) which was right next to a service elevator. There was a constant "thud" every 20-30 seconds the entire cruise (I'm assuming from the elevator engaging at each floor). It was also a little smaller than ours. However, all things considered, they said it didn't matter that much because they didn't spend a whole bunch of time in their room anyway.
One consideration for going on this cruise in January: the water temp is between 70-75 degrees. Several people were staying out of the water because of that. We all are from the west coast, so the water temp for us wasn't an issue (it's in the 50's here). The outside temp also can be a littler chillier: 70-80 degrees (funny to say when it's in the high 30's today here in Oregon). None of that really affected us, though.
We would go on this cruise again in a heartbeat!
Sovereign of the Seas 4/03
Carnival Paradise 6/03