Exciting news for those of you who love to sail Royal Caribbean and enjoy rock climbing. By the end of the year, Royal Caribbean plans to have a rock climbing wall on ALL of their ships. I just returned from a Royal Caribbean function and was given the good news during one of the meetings!
Sure wish the Vision had there rock wall so we could watch you shimmy up the wall. Now wouldn't that be a good video to show the car club when we got back?
Cruise Queen to
The only downside to the rock wall is that availability is limited. I expected the wall to be open every day, all day. It's not. You have to plan your schedule around it, if you want to climb, and that seems to be a foolish way to market this attraction. I mean, am I going to jerry-rig my excursion schedule just so I'm back on the ship during the 60 minutes (or whatever) that the wall is open? I think not. Same with the rollerblading rink. It's not open for very long. Nor is the golf simulator.
They go to all the trouble and expense of putting these attractions on the ships (I speak only of the Navigator of the Seas, having just finished a cruise on May 3), but then they limit their availability by only being open for certain hours of the day, and not very many of them, to boot.
If they have dining room people tending the dining rooms all day long (Windjammer, Cafe Promenade) and if they have stateroom attendants working all day long, why not have the rock wall, the inline track, and the golf simulator working all day long, and into the night in the case of the simulator? That was a surprise, and a disappointment - that those attractions weren't available more.
The rock climbing wall is usually well used by passengers. The "routes" up the rock vary in difficulty and can be changed, although I don't know how frequently they are changed. Some of the routes are easy (as far as rock climbing goes), and some are difficult in that you are beyond vertical at times with your back to the ground. I had never rock climbed before this trip, but I absolutely loved it.
I too agree they could keep it open longer, but it takes quite a staff for it. They need at least 1 crewman/climber, and then 1 or 2 other people mannng the signup sheet and getting folks into the gear. If you are interested in this, go there as soon as they open on the first day and at least get the waiver form. I've been on ships where they've run out of waivers and have to wait for more to be printed. This way you'll have it already to go when you are ready to climb.
My understanding is that they are putting it on the aft decks on most ships near the fitness center. It will vary though depending upon spacing and layout. I'm sure that you won't lose anything important from the ship. I will let you know what was changed on Rhapsody this fall when I go back. They are putting up the wall in August I think, and I am going back in November. I took Rhapsody less than 2 years ago, and it won't be hard to see how they fit it in.
Actually people who actually rock climb will use a wall like they have on the ship for training when they can't use the real thing. Everyone should try it at least once, it is more fun than it looks. Take it from me..real rock climbing is tougher though.