Just back, first time on RCCL. Had a great time. Ship is huge, so much to do.
Food was good, only thing that was not great was the steaks. They were tough
and no taste. But everything else was great. Rock climbing wall was really fun.
We went to Belize, Grand Caymen, Costa Maya and Cozumel. Costa Maya is a really nice port. They have a beach with two salt water swimming pools and plenty of lounge chairs right off the pier, all free. They have two bars and lots of shopping right at pier. If anyone has any questions let me know. I am gonna do a review soon.
I've heard that the ship is starting to show its age, (i.e. worn out carpeting in cabins, dirty common areas...). Did you find that to be the case?
Also, did you find yourself standing in line for alot of things, like show tickets, buffets, things like that? Some people have said that they never knew 3000 people were on board yet others have said that there were line everywhere for everything. ???
No the ship looks great, its only 4 yrs old. They constantly were cleaning and painting. That is true with all ships. We never really waited in line much, only getting off the ship. The buffet lines went quick as they had many lines. No line when we went to get our ice show tickets. Lines were always long for the shore excursions, I suggest booking them ahead of time. Thats what we did. And line for purser was usually long. Only area that I ever felt was crowded was the promenade deck. Always packed with people.
Not sure about the pools we only used the jacuzzis. Yes they charge 3.95 to eat plus money for shakes, malts etc. It was ok, we only ate there once. Dont think I would do it again. Hamburgers werent much different then ones on buffet. Onion rings were really good though.
We just got back on Jan 30th and I have to say that the ship was beautiful. Our room was very clean. I even commented on how nice the shower looked. As for the rest of the ship, we were amazed at how beautifully it was decorated. It looked brand new, bright and shiny.
As for crowds, we never felt squeezed in. Never had a problem with lines for breakfast and lunch. We always managed to find a table by the window. I know that there were 3000 people onboard but the ship is so large that it seemed to absorb everyone with ease.
We never ran into a problem where we had to wait a long time for anything. As jamiegunter said, book your excursions online. Not only will you avoid standing in line at the excursion counter but you won't run the risk of an excursion booking up.
Yes the pools and jacuzzis are all saltwater. My 13 year old son refused to go into them because of that but after being enticed by a cute girl, went in and reported back that it was fine. One night when the sea was a little rough, my husband and I were watching the pool water slosh out in huge waves. Next to the pool was someone cleaning out the jacuzzis. We were impressed on how well he was cleaning everything.
The dining room food was good, not great where you comment on each and every bite, but tasty enough. If you order something and don't like it, exchange it for something else. Also, our waiter would let us know what she thought of each nights dinner selections. She was always right. I can't believe that each night I was eating 2-3 appetizers, a salad, 2 entrees, etc. Thanks to the ship being so large, we did so much walking that I didn't gain any weight!
If you like to cruise, you can't go wrong with this ship.
We did mayan ruins in Belize, and costa maya. You dont need a excursion for costa maya if you like to swim and get some sun. THey have a beach with chairs ummbrellas and two salt water swimming pools. Its all free. They have shopping right there with two restraunts that are ship recommended. THis is all right off the pier. If you want to see some ruins, we did the Tale of two cities in Belize its a city tour along with going to see ruins at Althun Ha. THe ruins were amazing, five large temples. One you can climb to the top of. Costa Maya we went to the Chacchoben ruins, they had three large temples. Both are only 4 and half hour tours. As the ruins are only a hour drive in a nice air conditioned bus.
I was on the Explorer last May 04 and I have to say that the only problem we encountered was one day at Port. You couldn't flush the toilets it was a very long day on board it took them at least (minimum) 5 hours to clear a (clog) as they called it. Other than that it was beautiful. You will enjoy it, it is a great ship.