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You get what you paid for. Let?s begin with the long lines just to get on the ship. I think you have to go thru 4 different check ins. Just be sure when you get at the port you have your birth certificate, I.D. ready. I can't believe all the trouble you have to go thru just to get on the ships!
First day: We arrived around noon, on a Greyhound that was included in our package thru AAA...after staying a night in Miami. If you choose to stay the night before, go to Bayside and eat at Bubba Gump?s!! Great food and ask for a 'to go' cup, and you will get a souvenir cup to carry the rest of your drink in. Anyway, the day you arrive at the port, be sure you have plenty of One dollar bills for the bus drivers and the guys that load your suitcases onto the boat. For each suitcase or bag expect to pay 1:00. Just take about 30 ? 40 one dollar bills. And they ask for it too!!! The first day on the boat, we had to find our own cabin. It was kind of weird as we had no idea where to go! We found our room. This was ocean view and was very nice. Enough room for 2 people! We then decided to walk around. Went to the area that has information and got a map of the ship and checked it out on our own. Very nice but it was hard finding yourself around. Wish they had a more detailed map. Showed what floor you were on, but not how to get around to the front of the ship or the back of the ship...what doors to take to get where you wanted to go. First day we ate lunch at the outdoor pool bar and grill, not knowing we could have went thru some sliding glass doors and eaten inside the air-conditioned dining room.
The "Welcome Aboard" show was good. The dancers were good, the singers were so-so. The comedy, Mark Macy, was great. We also saw his "adult" version Tuesday night which was hilarious! "Wee Jimmy" the cruise director was very funny and we enjoyed his talks on the tours and the shows in the evenings. We really enjoyed the ?adult shows?!! They were funny.
We left the dock about 15-20 minutes late and we decided to enjoy the scenery. Right before we left, around 3:30 everyone was advised to take to life boat drill and we did that. I felt like I had on a neck brace when we learned how to put the life jackets on?it was funny! Then we proceeded to go to the ?muster station?. We were outside, in the rain while it was storming?lightening flashing?.very scary.
After the drill, we went and watched the ship leave dock. That was exciting. Cruising in the rain!!! Anyway, if you decide to watch the boat leave, go to the front?its exciting. Oh yea, don?t worry too much about getting sea sick. This is a boat that you can?t feel the rocking as some people say you do. I took my motion sickness pill before loading, but didn?t need it after that. We ate and then we went to the first show. It was a show the included people from the audience. My boyfriend was one that pick!! Funny!
Day 2, we woke up to find us docked in Key West, Florida. We went and ate and decided the day before to take the Pirate tour and just look around. We enjoyed our time there. That evening we went and got our formal pictures taken and then to the ?meet the captain? party, reception. It was great, but watch how many free drinks you get. They catch up with you later. We went to eat at the formal dinner and met our new friends, which later went to the Broadway show with us. The dinner tonight was Caribbean and I had lobster. It was ok. After the show we went out side and enjoyed the fresh air and watching the big ship cruise down the ocean on its way to Cozemel, Mexico. After that we went to the Adult Comedy show. That was the funniest show! After that we went to bed.
Day 3- Cozemel Mexico. It was nice and HOT. It?s sad seeing what Hurricane Emily has done to these people. The city was nice and you could tell that there was damage. The top of the huts were blown away, and there was debris on the beach. They were fixing it back up though. We couldn?t even go see the Maya Ruins for what she did. We didn?t have an excursion until 2:30, and since we arrived early to Mexico, we went into town by taxi that cost 6:00 for 4 people, with our new friends we had dinner with and ate at Carlo?s and Charlie?s. It was so great!! Food was great and you get these big Margaritas in these huge glasses. Strawberry was the best! A lot of entertainment there. There was a guy that made everyone balloon hats, which after we left, we gave to kids. They know how to have fun. After that we got another taxi and went back to the boat to get ready to go on our excursion on the Catamaran. Now that was fun!! We left from right around where the boat was docked. We arrived kinda late and had a lot of people in front of us and were wondering if they were going to put all of us on one boat. But it was all good, here came another boat. The man on our boat was so great!! We had all the beer, pop, water we wanted on our way out to sea to snorkel. I had never snorkeled so I was kind of leery about doing this. As soon as you get on you get a snorkel mask, life jacket and the flipper shows. The tour director explained how to fix your mask etc and then we stopped and you could either jump from the boat into the water or take the ?chicken steps? as he called it?..the steps that go right into the water. I chose to jump, but before I jumped I told the director that I had never done this before, he helped me with my fear and in I went. That was the best time I have had in a long long time. Very interesting of what you see below. We even had our picture taken looking at the fish.
For about 45 minutes we were in the water, and then we got back on the cat marine and went to a private beach about 30 minutes later. The sand was very hot, so if you have any water shoes, take them. The beach itself was rough on your feet. We could have eaten there for 8.00 but chose not to?.it didn?t look to good. The flies were terrible though. We asked why they were so bad and the director said it was from Emily and the horses that were taking people for rides. After this we were back at the dock around 5:30 and tipped the crew with 5.00 and also bought all the pictures they took of us?.3 plus a free one of the fish in the sea, for 33.00. After we arrived at the dock we went and took a shower, and headed out to meet with our new friends to eat at Ponchos. We then went to the show next to Poncho?s and purchased shirts that were 2 for 20.00 and some necklaces for our girls for 3. 95 each. We then headed to the boat around 9:00 for out departure at 10:00. Our cruise director told us that when the boat was ready to leave, go watch and you will see someone running to the boat about to miss it. Sure enough?.there was one person!! Guess he drank too much at Fat Tuesdays, right on the dock. We enjoyed this evening outside watching the stars and enjoying the ride. Seems like the front or the back of the ship were ever really over crowded.
Day 4 Fun day at sea. Well, let?s see we woke up and decided to go our own ways. We took walkie talkies for this reason. They worked fine and we didn?t bother anyone. I decided today was a pool day for me and he decided on the Casino. The pool is crowded on this day so beware. Although I got there around noon, I found a great spot and layed out for a couple of hours. They had a Caribbean style band playing. In the afternoon they had a hairy chest contest that was funny, and ice sculpting. The pool was very crowded.
And it?s not very big anyway. The hot tub had a bunch of kids in it when it is clearly stated as adults only. There was always someone coming around offering you the daily drink. I never bought one myself, as I saw 6.25 to much. Oh and by the way, if you want to sneak in some alcohol just empty out a bottle of Listerine, add the clear liquid, vodka is what we used, add 8 drops of yellow food coloring and it will go thru the check in line. That was cool. Then all you got to do is get some lemonade or punch from the drink stations and take it back to your room and add the vodka and there ya have it. If you are smart take your own travel mug. Makes it ever better. Anyway, after our time away from one another, we chose to go to the last formal dinner. Before dinner they were serving sushi around the stars lounge, which the line was long with only one person working it. The dinner tonight was American, which wasn?t very good. I had the filet mignon and it tasted like roast. After dinner we went and played some slots, went out on the back deck with a bottle of champagne and drank and then went to bed.
We ported about 7am on Friday and we chose to have the early departure meaning you took your own luggage at 7am to the Palace lounge, and they showed you the way to debark along with your luggage. This way is a lot faster than having to stand around and wait on the entire luggage to be dropped off. Plus we got the first bus out to the airport.
All in this entire cruise was ok. I mean the food was ok, the entertainment was ok, and the activities were boring. I enjoyed just being on the cruise myself. If you don?t want to spend a lot of money and you want to go to be left alone go on this cruise. I?ve heard that other cruise lines are a lot better so next time we will go with another cruise line.