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moesyk4

Mini Review of Allure of the Seas...11 bags, 3 kids, and a partridge in a pear tree!

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San Juan: 

This was an early and a brief stop from 7:30-2 pm. We loved San Juan our two other times here but with such a short stop, we decided to do a self guided walking tour. It was our first truly hot and humid day as it drizzled coming into the port, but the kids took all the walking like a champ! We strolled along the water, headed up to the cathedral, and made our way over to El Morro.

 

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Our kids loved the fort and we loved exploring the history and all of the cool spaces! Such a beautiful view as well.

 

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Our kids had been promised a dungeon, and El Morro did not deliver and we made our way back through town to Cristobal. It was very hot and we had walked a couple of miles at this point and so we were dragging, but we stopped at a street vendor for some ice slushie snack and it revived us.

 

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We stopped at Cristobal long enough to see the dungeon and then made our way back to the ship.

My opinion is still the same, San Juan is an incredible port and I would love to sail out of the city some day!

 

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Labadee:

We always love private islands and this was no exception. We were mini golfing while sailing in and it was a beautiful view!

 

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We got off right away and headed to Nellie's Beach, which is recommended here for being calm and kid friendly. It was perfect! I am not a fan of pushy vendors and knew to avoid the shopping area, but I didn't expect them EVERYWHERE. A guy with a RCCL shirt on came up to us and asked if we needed help finding a chair, I just assumed he worked for the ship. He walked us about 20 feet in the direction we were already heading, pointed to a set of chairs easily accessible on a still empty beach, and then literally said to me, "Now you give me a dollar." Umm..no? And I hadn't brought cash, but he stood there for a couple of minutes until my husband asked him to leave. During lunch, some guys came in and did some acrobatics and then walked around asking for money. I get it is part of the culture, but not at all what I want on a beach day.

 

Thankfully, overall it wasn't an issue and the beach was gorgeous. If you want to rent anything like an umbrella or a beach mat, go early as they run out fast! We got one beach mat and the kids had fun using that throughout the day.

 

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The swimming area was fairly crowded near shore, although not uncomfortably so. Once you got out a little deeper, it was extremely quiet and relaxing.

 

I always find the BBQ to be a nightmare and this was no exception. It was crowded with crazy lines and people everywhere. We found a random side table with just the meat and some plates, so we piled up on that and abandoned the mediocre sides.

Overall, it was a very relaxing and fun beach day and one of the prettiest private islands we have been to!

 

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Well, all good things must come to an end, including our cruise. The final night they do a little water and music show in the Aquatheater. We wandered over there as a filler before hitting up the hot tub one last time but we ended up really loving it and it was a great capstone to the cruise. The boys went down to the front and got absolutely soaked, it was great and so much fun.

 

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Disembarkation is never fun, but is a really blast with 42 bags and 3 kids who stayed up late the night before (sense my sarcasm?) They only had one line for people with birth certificates that was oddly clogged up with people with just passports who apparently thought it would be more fun to wait in one line for 20 minutes then choose one of the 12 other lines they could fly through, but we managed through largely unscathed.

Because of crazy flight prices, we were actually flying out of Ft. Myers the following day and so it was back to the airport for us! We took the Alamo shuttle which pulled up quickly and was a pleasant ride back. This was probably the most negative experience as they were probably 10 other families in front of us waiting for a van. I get that it is probably hard to navigate cruise crowds, but it would've easily been a 45 minute wait as vans got returned and brought up. After waiting about 20, we ended up cramming into a mid size SUV because we weren't even close to the front yet. Not a fun way to end the cruise!

 

We headed to Ft. Myers for one more day of swimming, a trip to Lover's Key and the beach, and some more relaxing time. It was actually a really nice way to ease back into the real world.

 

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The kids had a great time collecting shells and getting to jump in the big Gulf waves.

 

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We also stopped at the IMAG for a few hours which was a great way to kill time!

 

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Overall, it was a wonderful first family cruise and we would sail the Allure of the Seas again in a heartbeat. The activities were limitless, the entertainment was top notch, we loved the food, and the staff as always were amazing. We had a couple of minor complaints, but nothing abnormal and we couldn't have asked for a better time!

 

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Until next time!

 

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What a great review. Thank you for sharing your family’s wonderful cruise vacation!

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16 hours ago, moesyk4 said:

 

3. As mentioned earlier, evening entertainment was a little sparse for kids. The hot tubs stated they were adult only 24 hours, but didn't specify when that started. We utilized them in the evenings a couple of times but always picked one that didn't have any adults in it. My son and I did the Puzzle Mystery...I was completely lost but if you like doing the Escape room, it would be fun! My son loved it and we won a coveted medal.

 

 

 

Can you give more information about that Puzzle Mystery? Trying to google it just brings up the actual escape rooms they have on the other ships. I love things like that! Is it just geared towards kids? Do they advertise it in the daily guides?

 

Thank you for doing this review! I love seeing how everyone experiences things differently, and I can't wait to see this ship in November!

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On 4/30/2019 at 2:33 PM, harleyquinn228 said:

Can you give more information about that Puzzle Mystery? Trying to google it just brings up the actual escape rooms they have on the other ships. I love things like that! Is it just geared towards kids? Do they advertise it in the daily guides?

 

Thank you for doing this review! I love seeing how everyone experiences things differently, and I can't wait to see this ship in November!

 

I have never actually done an Escape room, I just know that one of the guys in our group described it as similar to that concept. It was actually an adult geared game, there were a couple of older kids like my son but I am sure they had no clue what was going on lol. My son enjoyed the competition regardless. 

You get an envelope of about 8 puzzles you solve, some of which involve clues around the room. Each time you solve on and bring it up to the host, they will give you another hint towards the criminal. I think we had about 45 minutes to solve it and they recommend bigger teams because the puzzles can be quite hard. I think we had 10 on our team and we were the only ones to get it right.

Even though it took me a solid 20 minutes to figure out what the heck was going on, we had a great time! If you are familiar with Escape rooms at all, you would probably catch on right away. It was only on the last sea day around 4 pm I believe, and it was in the Cruise Compass.

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On ‎4‎/‎30‎/‎2019 at 7:10 AM, leisuretraveler223 said:

You lost me at two adults, three kids.... and ELEVEN BAGS!?!?!

 

LOL!  I have two small kids and the anxiety was real when I read that because it's TRUE.  The last time we traveled with them we had 3 suitcases, 4 backpacks, two car seats plus a double stroller.  I am itching just thinking about it.  LOL!

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