explorer 5/22 review

Welcome to Cruise Critic! If you'd like to participate on our forums by joining in the conversation, please Register Now! Be sure to visit our FAMOUS Roll Call forums, where you can meet other cruisers sailing with you and share a tour or shore excursion and SAVE MONEY!

#1
Boston, Ma
149 Posts
Joined Nov 2000
well I figured I might as well give a review as well...I always like reading other peoples different opinions based on the same cruise...so here I go!

We flew from Boston to Fort Lauderdale, and was at the cruise terminal by 1230. Since we had just been upgraded to Platinum (!!!), we had priority check in and didn't have to wait in that awfully long line we saw. We were onboard by 1 oclock. We immediately were able to go and put our stuff in our room. For some reason I always remember there being more storage space. There was three of us in an inside cabin and it seemed awfully small...but we made the best of it.

Being platinum certainly had its perks. We had robes for on board use which came in handy when there are three of you trying to get ready for dinner at once and don't have to hold up others by getting ready in the bathroom. Also, the Platinum and Diamond reception was pretty awesome. There was only maybe 15-20 people there, and I think this was because it was at noon on the last day at sea. We took a break from enjoying the last day in the sun and wandered up to the Viking Crown Lounge for some tasty food. I would recommend that if you are at this level and get invited to definitely check it out. Plus, it was open bar, what more could you possibly want!!

I was slightly disappointed in RCCL entertainment on the ship. We had cruised on the Explorer last April and for some reason, the Ice Show and singers and dancers were the same as the previous year. I figured after a year, they would have changed. However, the group Mosasic was AMAZING. If anyone wants to check them out, their website is www.notanotherboyband.com
I was also disappointed that there was only one parade on the first night, and they didn't let you know in advance there was only going to be one. Also, I still wonder why they don't do the horse racing anymore. No one seemed to know the answer.

I'm not so sure why Royal Caribbean stops at Belize. We did an excursion, the City Tour and Zoo, and well it was ok, I wouldn't necessarily do it again. The country seems poor and under developed. From what I heard from other pax, next time they just won't get off. The tendering seemed horribly slow on the way back, we even got stuck on the tender for 45 minutes because they couldn't figure out how to line it up with the ship.

Costa Maya was a lot better than what I had heard. So many people complained about it, but even if you just stay right near the pier there is plenty of shopping, places to eat, and a huge pool for your enjoyment. We took an excursion called the Jungle Beach Break and although the beach wasn't that pretty and the water had a lot of seaweed, it was still enjoyable.

Cozumel was crowded the day we were there. It was the explorer, a princess ship and 3 other carnival ships. However, it wasn't crowded when we were at the beach. We had a crazy cab driver on the way back to the ship, who decided to drive no less than 80 mph (120 kph) and we were all convinced he was not going to stop for anyone. But we made it back just fine.

I have been to Grand Caymen 3 times now, and always though that if I'm going to have to miss one island, it might as well be Grand Caymen. However, we were the only ship in port that day, and I am happy we didn't miss it. The beach we went to was not crowded at all, maybe 20-30 people on the entire beach. The day was beautiful and we were able to spend some relaxing time just walking around the town. What a difference being the only ship in port. The tenders went quickly, 3 minute tender at the most, as we were able to anchor as close as possible to the island.

Embarkment went a little slower than normal, since there was quite a few non-US pax on board. We were called off at 7 (white) but decided to hang out for a while since we didn't have a plane to catch until 1230. Got in line around 8 and was off and had our bags by 930.

I will be happy to answer any questions.
-erika
Expand Signature
Collapse Signature
4/97 - Big Red Boat
4/98 - Enchantment
4/00 - Grandeur
4/01 - Grand Princess
4/02 - Voyager
6/02 - NCL Majesty
4/03 - Grandeur
4/04 - Explorer
5/05 - Explorer again
5/06-6/06 - Enchantment B2B

...I hope you understand...
I just had to go back to the island
#2
NW Burbs, Chicago
306 Posts
Joined Feb 2004
Thanks for all your thoughts Erika, it's finally our turn! 10 of us leave in 9 days and we can hardly stand it!!! Glad you had a good time and I'm hoping for the same for us! Kelly
#3
Phoenix
3,579 Posts
Joined Dec 2001
*erika* -

I love coming to work and seeing a review. It starts my day out right. Thanks for taking the time to share.
Expand Signature
Collapse Signature




RCCL Viking Seranade 4/93
Carnival Jubilee 4/95
RCCL Majesty of the Seas 4/97
Norwegian Sun 4/00
Carnival Destiny 5/01
Carnival Destiny 4/02
Carnival Pride 3/03
Carnival Spirit 3/04
Norwegian Star 3/05
RCCL Explorer of the Seas 9/05
Carnival Spirit 5/06
RCCL Freedom of the Seas 11/06
Carnival Pride 4/07
RCCL Adventure of the Seas 10/07
Carnival Destiny 5/08
RCCL Liberty of the Seas 10/08
Carnival Pride 5/10
RCCL Allure of the Seas 11/11
Celebrity Infinity 4/13
RCCL Oasis of the Seas 11/14
RCCL Radiance of the Seas 5/15
Carnival Miracle 4/16
Regal Princess 11/16
#4
Lansing, Michigan
1,838 Posts
Joined Jun 2005
I was on Explorer of the Seas in February, it was my first cruise, and I thought it was awesome. There was only 1 ice show and 1 full production show because a singer came down with the flu and a dancer broke her leg. We didn't catch the ice show (I've heard it's great) but we did see the 1 full production show (History Repeating) and it was super good. RCCL brought in a couple comedians and Bowser and his Rock & Roll Show to substitute for their normal entertainment line up. Cruise Director Clodah O'Connor was GREAT! I've heard that the shows on RCCL's ships change every 4 - 5 years. They have to be completely redone per ship (set, staging, lighting), so it's not an easy task to change a show.

We did catch the welcome aboard parade in the Royal Promenade, I don't know if there were 2 or not, we were all in bed by 11pm each night. We had early seating for dinner and loved it. No body in my group missed a single meal. We had Oana as our main waitress and she was a doll.

I have no idea about the horse racing that Erica was talking about. I didn't see anything about that. Over all my group (all having not cruised before) all enjoyed their experience onboard RCCL's Explorer of the Seas, and we look forward to sailling on Freedom of the Seas in February 2007!