Here is a schedule of events from Day 3 of our cruise. This was the day before we got to Labadee.
Let me preface this by saying that I am not a cold weather guy. It was windy and a bit chilly for my liking. However, having said that, there were people at the pool area, laying out, reading books, napping. There were a few in the pool and hot tubs. The pool area is quite large with ample covered seating, and the solarium is also covered with a pool and hot tubs. So, there were people out at the pool area. It was obviously much warmer and nicer on Day 3 than when we left. Not just 85 and picture perfect.
Okay, here is what was on schedule for some of the activities on Day 3 on the Explorer of the Seas:
Rock Wall open climbing from 9:00-Noon (I don't recall if it was too windy to be open, but I doubt it)
Movie Time at 10:00
Adult Hot Shot Competition 10:00
Inline Skating 10:00-Noon
Trivia Challenge 11:00
Poker Tournament in the Casino 11:00
Men's Bellyflop Contest 2:30
Ice Carving Demonstration 2:00
Name That Tune 8:00
Headliner Show 9:00
Music with live DJ 10:00-late
This is just a small listing of all the activities scheduled on Day 3. Don't forget the many times to enjoy some good food during the day (that would basically be nonstop!)
You could walk around the Promenade, cruise through the casino, sit with a good book, listen to the Calypso band at Poolside, or Romantic Strings in the late afternoon. You could sit with a good book. You could meet some of the many friendly fellow passengers that you see. You could order a pot of coffee and sit on your balcony and watch the ocean (I did).
I guess there are about a million ways to enjoy your cruise even if it is a little windy and chilly outside...
Sorry, I guess I did not answer all of your questions. No, we did not eat in any of the specialty restaurants. Our whole family goes (my wife, myself, and four children, so we really try to enjoy the trip as economically as possible. Therefore, we don't try the specialty restaurants.
As for your room, ours were on Deck 8, back (aft). They were fine. Your agent could help you with what you might expect as far as location or perhaps stability while sailing. Ours were fine. I can say that they were larger, nicer, and the bathrooms were 100% better than when we cruised on the Sovereign. By better, I mean bigger, with more room, nicer, bigger shower and toilet area. It was a most pleasant surprise.
Hope that helps. If you have any questions, feel free to ask, but you won't be disappointed. I have only cruised twice, so my experience is limited, but I would say you would have to work hard to have a bad time on a cruise, and that to get the most of it, do as much as you can, and experience all that the ship has to offer.
I thank you for your review as well. We will be sailing in about a week. I'm hoping the weather is a little warmer this time through.
My son wants to know what the movies were. Anything appropriate for a 13 yo?
I'm sorry to hear you were disappointed in Samana. I'm struggling to decide what to do there, and it may be a stay on the ship day.
I've booked the family oceanview cabin. When I get back we can compare notes.
Thanks for the tips on the coffee also. I wish they had a dunkin donuts on board!