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Zenith 9/2 with a toddler (long)


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We have cruised with Celebrity, Royal Caribbean, and Princess. This was our first cruise with our DS who is 14 months old and this was the first cruise for my parents.


We arrived at the port about 11:30 after driving from VA. After checking in, we waited for about 15 minutes before boarding started. Boarding was slower last week because they used only one gangway (deck 3) due to the wind.


Our cabin was 4055 and my parents had 4053. Our beds were in an L-shape which gave us more room for the wooden crib (which is smaller than a standard crib). We thought our cabin was in good shape. After reading several reviews, we were prepared for the worst. Instead we found that the carpet and bed cover and sheets were in good shape. The bathroom was very clean. There were some nicks in the sink but nothing bad. Our cabin steward and his assistant were great.


We thought the ship was in good shape and very clean. I think if you are used to megaships, you might miss some of the extra activities, but we really enjoyed the Zenith and would cruise on her again.


We enjoyed the food in the buffet and grill and the dining room. Our waiter and his assistant were terrific. We really appreciated how friendly the staff were.


Most of the men on formal nights had on suits and some had on tuxes. On the informal night, most of the men wore jackets. My DH wore a tie but my father did not. He said, “the paper said a jacket and slacks” and that is what it said. We did see some men in shorts on casual nights. Personally, we like dressing up on cruises and we would like to see the dress code enforced.


The production shows were better than we remembered them being two years ago on the Horizon. The magician, Carl Andrews, was fabulous. I missed the guest singer, but my parents said he was very good.


We had a babysitter for the two formal nights. The babysitter for our DS was the librarian, who is very sweet. We had the early dinner seating so after dinner we usually took our DS to hear music for a few minutes (he likes to dance) and then we got him ready for bed. The sitter came at 8:30 and was well worth the $24 plus tip (it is $8/hour for a minimum of 3 hours). Two nights, my parents stayed in with him (with the baby monitor in their room) and the other nights, my husband and I took turns staying in while the other one went to the shows with my parents.


Bermuda was wonderful. After rough seas getting there, we enjoyed beautiful sunny days. On Monday, my parents did the Famous Homes and Hideaways tour and really enjoyed it. It did rain on Monday when we arrived, but since it wasn’t raining that much we decided to head to the beach. The weather cleared while we were on the bus. We went to Warwick Long Beach and Jobson Cove which are side by side. Jobson Cove was perfect for our DS who just waded right into the water and had a great time. My DH enjoyed playing in the waves at Warwick Long Beach while DS and I played in the sand. These beaches are beautiful. There is not a snack bar but there are clean chemical flush toilets. Just take bottled water with you.



On Tuesday we all went to Horseshoe Bay. It is beautiful. We got there early and left about 11:00. It looked like it would be very crowded that day. My parents stayed with our DS while we snorkeled with Jesse James in the afternoon. We took the same snorkeling tour two years ago and the second time was just as great.


On Wednesday, my parents went to the Dockyards while we went to the Aquarium and Zoo. Our DS really enjoyed this. We had lunch at the Swizzle Inn and then went to Shelly Bay. This is a good beach for kids because of the calm water but the snack bar said, “Opening Soon” and the bathroom facilities weren’t open (they are with the snack bar). In hindsight, we should’ve skipped Shelly Bay. Once the snack bar and facilities are open it will be great.


On Thursday, my parents walked around St. George and we headed to the beach. We walked to Tobacco Bay. Since it was already starting to get crowded, we continued over to Fort St. Catherine’s Beach. This worked out great for us and we had a perfect morning at the beach.


No, we didn’t put our DS in the pool! On the sea days, he enjoyed walking around the ship. We went in the empty show lounge, Fleet Bar, or Rainbow Room. He liked walking up and down the incline going into the lounge and just walking around in general. We brought toys from home and checked out a treasure chest of baby/toddler toys from the children’s program. His favorite toy turned out to be the used laminated bus passes! We took turns staying with him during nap time. I think my DH enjoyed getting a nap!


Getting off the ship at the end of the cruise is never fun. We waited on the pool deck (in the shade) until the time for us to go to the lounge to wait to disembark. It wasn’t too bad, they were just about 20 minutes behind schedule.


This was a great cruise for all of us. The itinerary is perfect and we enjoyed being on the Zenith. We were pleasantly surprised that we were unable to see why some people have complained so much about the ship.

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I am delighted that you enjoyed your trip and the Z, one of my favorite ships.

Parents who believe in really parentlng a child make the trip great not only for themselves and their children but the other passengers, too.

My hat is off to you.

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I did the same trip in 2001 with my then 13 month old. Of course I had fun and the ship was lovely (we had sailed it in April of the same year when he was 7 months old and really enjoyed it.). The sitters were wonderful but I hated traveling with a 13 month old. He was hell on wheels and I couldn't stop to chat with anyone because he was in prepetual motion. I didn't sail again with him until he was three and we both love cruising.

I am glad to hear that your journey was more enjoyable than mine.

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