Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Duct Tape???

“Be Prepared!” A motto I first heard when my son joined the Boy Scouts many years ago and one that serves me well when I travel. I make sure to travel with a variety of items that will rescue me from pending disasters. One such item that can always be found in my luggage and which keeps me in this constant state of readiness is…duct tape!

Before you roll your eyes and think this is a goof of some sort, let me assure you it is not. As a matter of fact, if you are familiar with Magellan’s, the online travel shop that coins itself “the worlds most trusted source of travel supplies”, then you know that duct tape is an item that can be found among their reliable wares!

Why do I carry duct tape and how can it be useful? Let me count the ways….

Luggage Repair: The way bags are tossed around these days its not unusual for them to take a serious blow that may render them useless. If you’d rather not spend precious vacation time shopping for new luggage give it a temporary fix with duct tape.

Personalize Your Luggage: With 95% of bags coming off the luggage carousel looking alike (soft side black polyester), I wanted mine to be a bit more conspicuous. Of course, if I purchased the set in red this wouldn’t be an issue! But since I didn’t, my handles and the piece of metal that attaches the wheels are now wrapped in duct tape. Which ever way my bag is laying, I can always spot it quite easily.

Hem Clothing: I’ve never been much of a seamstress, and although I carry a mini emergency sewing kit, I find duct tape faster and easier to hold up a fallen hem.

Lint Brush: Very handy for getting rid of speckles on your dress clothes.

Blisters: Bet you didn’t know that many runners use duct tape on blister prone areas. It stays in place and the shiny back is slick enough to slide on socks.

Stops Rattles: The gentle motion of the ocean is perfect for being lulled to sleep, but sometimes causes hangers to rattle in the closet. One strip of tape is all it takes to bind them together in silence.

Blow Dryer: Ever notice that the blow dryer that’s in your cabin has a button that needs to be depressed in order to run? I can’t style my hair like that. Now I tape it down!

Packing: Good to have on hand for wrapping up all those fragile souvenirs you’ve purchased.

Create a Clothesline: Twist a long piece into a rope and tie to stationery items. Perfect for drying swimsuits.

Emergency Shoelace: Cut off a piece the length of the lace and roll or twist it. Beats shopping for laces in port!

So there you have it. Duct tape is affordable, strong, adheres to all surfaces, is waterproof, and comes in basic gray or fashion colors. Its use is only restricted by your imagination. Don’t leave home without it!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Dining Aboard Oasis of the Seas

Once again Royal Caribbean has delivered the “WOW” by revealing details regarding the dining venues aboard the soon to be completed Oasis of the Seas. The many available options will provide a nice balance between the tried and true along with some brand new concepts. According to Frank Weber, Vice President of Food and Beverage Operations for Royal Caribbean, the size of Oasis provides the perfect opportunity to try these new concepts, and then match them to a specific neighborhood. At a “Culinary Showcase” web cast, Mr. Weber, along with Kenneth Taylor, Director of Restaurant Operations for Royal Caribbean, went through each neighborhood and discussed its companion dining venues.

The Boardwalk: Inspired by Coney Island, this outdoor, family friendly area is complete with the first ever Carousel at sea. You know the dining options here will be lots of fun!

* Johnny Rockets: Right in the center of activity, this 50’s style family favorite is bigger and better! Serves up burgers and yummy shakes and malts.

* Seafood Shack: What a cool place! Surf music playing, with wait staff dressed in long board shorts and Quicksilver shirts. Munch on coconut shrimp, fried seafood baskets, baby back ribs and more.

* Donut Shop: Rotating selection of 10 -15 varieties of donuts and of course, coffee too! This could be dangerous!!!

* Ice Cream Parlor: 50’s style decor with 15 flavors! Ice cream in the “classic” way. Sorbets, sundaes…Sweet!

* Boardwalk Bar: Full scale bar with specialty drinks tailored to the area. Also serves salads, sandwiches, and other quick food.

Central Park: This open-air neighborhood features serene pathways, seasonal flower gardens and canopy trees. How lovely it will be to dine in the park!

* 150 Central Park: The most exclusive of all onboard restaurants. Semi- formal attire. Features leading edge cuisine, wine pairings and tasting menu. More info still under wraps. Hmmm….

* Giovanni’s Table: Takes the place of Portofino, but this new Tuscan bistro is more casual and has a “fun” atmosphere. Entrees are served “family style”.

* Chops Grille: Royal Caribbean’s signature steakhouse returns and offers dining alfresco! Oh, those marinated steaks…

* Park Café: Perfect for a quick bite or a full meal. Wraps, sandwiches, and made to order salads. Even crepes on certain days.

* Vintages: You may have stopped by while you were on a Freedom or Voyager class ship, but now it’s new and improved! Stop by for a glass of vino and tapas before heading off to dinner.

The Royal Promenade: Bigger and better, the Royal Promenade, a “bustling boulevard”, even offers mezzanine levels that allow cruise passengers to overlook the space below.

* Sorrento’s: Returning with new features, like pizza made to order! Pick the toppings you love, watch it being made, and mangia!

* Café Promenade: Always our first stop when we board! Cookies, pastries, yummy little sandwiches, specialty coffees. Diet? What diet?

* Mondo Coffee Bar: Isn’t coffee one of the 5 basic food groups? Need I say more?

Pool and Sport Zone: Lets head up to deck 15 and 16 where the pools, hot tubs, flow riders, sports court and mini golf are located. Just making the trip up here has made me hungry!

* Solarium Bistro: Wholesome and healthy is the word, with a full buffet for breakfast and lunch. Dinner offers a healthy alternative with 500-calorie entrees and nutritional info readily available. Find it adjacent to the solarium pool.

* Wipe Out Café: Near the H2O Zone this is so convenient for families! Just as close to the teen area…and good thing because they’re always hungry! All day soft serve, wraps, salads, hot dogs, hamburgers, etc.

* Windjammer Marketplace: You know it; you love it; its back! Why tamper with perfection?

* Izumi: Asian specialties and sushi bar ordered a la carte. Also features the new and exciting concept called hot rock cooking, where meals are cooked on searing hot volcanic stone.

* Vitality Café: (on deck 6) Near the entrance of the spa and fitness center this is another option for health conscious guests. Wraps, fruit, smoothies, energy drinks, herbal teas are served.

So there you have it. Although reservations are not necessary for specialty restaurants, they are recommended. As a matter of fact, as of July 9 guests booked on the Oasis of the Seas can make their specialty dining reservations online. Please note that certain dining venues charge an additional fee. Of course the beautiful Opus dining room serves breakfast, lunch and dinner with an entire floor reserved for guests choosing "My Time Dining".

As per Adam Goldstein, president of Royal Caribbean International, “Oasis of the Seas showcases the evolution of Royal Caribbean dining. Both the new concepts and the established Royal Caribbean offerings found throughout the neighborhoods are designed to meet contemporary dining standards, cater to individual preferences and schedules and foster epicurean curiosity”.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Celebrity Select Dining

In recent months, one by one, every cruise line has implemented an open seating dining option in addition to the early /late dining time that is traditional to cruising. The demand for a less stringent dinner time has been escalating, and the cruise lines have responded. Now we can add Celebrity Cruise Line to that list.

In September “Celebrity Select Dining” will be introduced fleet wide. This open seating concept offers guests all kinds of flexibility. It allows guests to have dinner any time they choose during the hours the dining room is open. You can also dine with new- found friends one evening, and just your traveling party the next. Like everything that Celebrity does, this program will be “a notch above”. They have had some time to study how the other lines are doing things and then looked for a way to improve upon it. To do this they are currently working on a reservation system that will allow guests to schedule their dining times for each evening of their cruise before they even get on board. You may not think of this as the ultimate in spontaneity, but for an obsessed planner like myself, it’s perfect! I can look at my daily itinerary, check the time I’d return from a shore excursion, factor in shower, dress and make-up, possibly a pre- dinner drink, and come up with my ideal dinner time! For others it may not be as calculating, and you are certainly not obligated to plan so far in advance! You can make reservations on board, day- by- day. Celebrity’s goal is simply to avoid having their guests wait for a table.

The dining experience aboard Celebrity has always been of utmost importance. From the moment you enter the dining room, to the time you finish that last spoonful of dessert, you are made to feel like you are the only guest they are serving. “Celebrity Select Dining” is just another way of them saying its all about you!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

St. John, New Brunswick

Saint John is located on the eastern side of the Bay of Fundy. This seaport community was an Indian trading post in the early 1600’s. One hundred and some years later it became a place for settlers loyal to the King of England during the Revolutionary War. Today St. John is considered the gateway to New Brunswick; the second largest port in Atlantic Canada and a favorite stop on a Canada-New England cruise.

The area, with its quaint shops, museums, and historical buildings is easy to explore by foot and an enjoyable way to spend the day. To protect the character of the buildings in this central core of the city, Saint John has created the twenty-block Trinity Royal Preservation Area. The “Prince William’s Walk” takes you through some of the most charming streets within this area. You can pick up a map of this self guided tour at the Saint John Visitor’s Bureau.

The Old City Market which first opened in 1876 is still a bustling place for locals and tourists to shop. It sells a variety of goods… a combination farmer’s market, fish market, bakery, etc. While here with my son we were offered a taste of a local snack; dried seaweed! Although it was salty and crunchy, I’ll definitely stick with potato chips whenever I get a case of the munchies!

No visitor to this area should miss seeing the spectacle of the Reversing Falls; a natural happening which occurs when the highest tides in the world force the St. John River to reverse its flow. The St. John River joins the Bay of Fundy at a narrow rocky point. As the forceful tide in the Fundy rises, the St. John River loses the battle and is pushed back, which causes the river current to flow upstream, in defiance of the laws of nature! A good vantage point from which to view the Falls is Fallsview Park, not far from the Reversing Falls Information Centre. A twelve-minute film presentation explaining the phenomenon of the Reversing Falls can be viewed in the Reversing Falls Roof Top Theatre on the observation deck. It’s interesting to watch, but a lot more exciting to experience…how about by a jet boat tour! This wild and thrilling ride allows you to climb, jump, and cross the rapids, but prepare to get soaked!
Rockwood Park and the small but lovely Cherry Brook Zoo are wonderful places for families to spend the day while in port. This 35-acre woodland is home to many species of exotic and endangered animals, from zebra to emu and the elusive wildebeest. There are also magnificent members of the cat family, including Siberian tigers and African lions. Several primates also call Cherry Brook Zoo home, including the highly endangered Golden Lion Tamarin.

Another way of seeing the sights is through the two hour guided bus tour offered by Saint John Transit. This year tours will begin on June 22, 2009 and end October 3, 2009. They are offered twice daily, at 9:45am and 12:45pm. The cost for adults is $18 Canadian and $6 Canadian for kids (under 6 was free). Meet at Barbour’s General Store, located at the foot of King Street in Market Slip. This excursion visits all I’ve mentioned above and much more.

On our 5 night Canada-New England cruise, my son and I chose a ship excursion called “St. Martins and The Bay of Fundy.” He picked this over the jet boat tour because of the promise of shell collecting on the beach and time to explore the Sea Caves which had been carved out of the sandstone by the Bay of Fundy tides. The bus ride was amusing as the guide entertained us with folklore and stories of life in the small fishing village. On the way we did stop for a look at the Reversing Falls. After watching the jet boats I made a mental note that on our next visit, this was something we had to try! When we arrived at the caves, thankfully it was low tide making the caves accessible…sort of! From the beach you’re separated from the caves by a river. Okay, that’s an exaggeration- it’s a small and very muddy stream! Regardless, it was wide enough, yucky, and you could either wade through or cross over by balancing on a plank that made a bridge of sorts. But the plank was wobbly and slippery from the mud and seaweed. Boys being well, boys do not think about these things, and my son dashed off without a second thought about how his clumsy mother was going to get across! I’m embarrassed to say I did not make it across dry. As a matter of fact, it was days before my sneakers dried out. But it was fun…and quite funny! Lunch was included at the restaurant on the beach and the chowder served was delicious. Returning to St. John, we still had lots of time to walk around on our own before retuning to our Royal Caribbean ship.

Monday, June 15, 2009


Have you been waiting for the right time to book your next cruise? Wait no more…the time is NOW (well, actually not now, it’s tomorrow)! The NCL NOW Sale begins Tuesday, June 16th and runs through Friday, June 19th.
What’s in it for you?
How about reduced deposits!
How about free onboard credit!

3-5 night sailings receive:
$15 onboard credit for inside cabins
$20 onboard credit for oceanview cabins
$40 onboard credit for balcony cabins
$50 onboard credit for mini-suites

6+ night sailings receive:
$25 onboard credit for inside cabins
$50 onboard credit for oceanview cabins
$75 onboard credit for balcony cabins
$100 onboard credit for mini-suites

*Book your NCL cruise at www.directlinecruises.com for an additional $25 onboard credit, just for booking online (6/16-6/19 only)! For details regarding this promotion, CLICK HERE.
Note: Offer applies to select sailings.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Halifax, Nova Scotia

When one thinks about cruising out of northeast cities, the ports of call in Florida, Bahamas, Bermuda, and the Caribbean come to mind. Little thought is given to Eastern Canada, a fascinating part of North America, which includes several provinces on the Atlantic Ocean that are accessible via cruise ship. Halifax and New Brunswick are two of these intriguing ports of call.
Halifax, the capital city of Nova Scotia, is always the most popular port of call on a Canada-New England cruise, and it’s no wonder! Just steps from your ship you can begin a stroll along the world’s longest boardwalk. It zigzags along the harbor and is lined with quaint shops, restaurants, and attractions. Take in the lovely views as you battle the crisp fall air with a cup of delicious clam chowder or a yummy fish sandwich.

History enthusiasts will find lots to explore in Halifax. Just steps from the cruise ship terminal is Pier 21. This newly restored historic site and museum was Canada’s “front door” to over one million immigrants that passed through between 1928 and 1971. The museum does a fine job of telling the story of the emotional immigration experience.

A short five minute walk from the waterfront, on Lower Water Street and Prince Street, is the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic. The collections housed here include artifacts, images, charts and plans relating to the marine history of Nova Scotia. The main attraction is an exhibition dedicated to the Titanic. The city of Halifax played a key role during the tragedy's aftermath and became the final resting place of many of her unclaimed victims. The exhibit features artifacts collected at the scene of the disaster, including one of the only Titanic deck chairs known to exist. Another highlight is the exhibit on the catastrophic Halifax explosion of 1917, when two warships collided in Halifax harbor not far from the museum, detonating tons of TNT.
The Citadel stands proudly atop a hill overlooking the city and is about a thirty minute steep climb from the pier. The present Citadel was built in 1856, and is a fourth in a series of fortifications constructed here since 1749 to defend the city and harbor. The views from the ramparts are incredible and there are interpreters dressed as members of the 78th Highlanders regiment that re-enact military drills. However, you’ll first encounter the Citadel’s pipers and drummers as they greet cruisers as they disembark. Check your ship’s offerings of shore excursions for the opportunity to play “Soldier for a Day.”
If history holds no interest for you, the Halifax Public Gardens may. Meander the winding paths of this 17 acre Victorian landscaped park while admiring the trees, shrubs, breathtaking flower beds, and sparkling fountains. Located in the heart of town, the gardens are also a perfect stop for shoppers to rest their weary feet.
You can visit all the above sights and more by taking a city tour on an authentic London style red double-decker bus. The 1½-hour tour covers the downtown area and includes 15 stops along the route. The informative commentary gives an overview of the history of the city and some facts about what you are seeing. Passengers can stay on board for the complete tour or get on or off at any stop. Tickets can be purchased at any stop, the closest to the cruise ship terminal being at Pier 21.

Another alternative for getting around is FRED (Free Rides Everywhere Downtown), Halifax's free shuttle bus. FRED transports residents and visitors around the downtown area and runs from July 4 to October 23, 2009, seven-days-a-week from 10:30 am to 5:00 pm. The bright green bus is easy to spot, as are the green signs that mark bus stops. You can also pick up this bus at Pier 21. Keep in mind that since this is not strictly for tourists, there is no commentary and the stops do not necessarily coincide with all the attractions you may want to visit.

On my visit to Halifax with my son, we chose to sight-see via the Harbour Hopper. This fully narrated tour in a quirky looking amphibious vehicle was lots of fun! We viewed all the above mentioned points of interest on the historic downtown streets, and then plunged into Halifax Harbor for a mariner’s view. This 55 minute tour was loads of laughs for children and adults alike! We purchased our ticket at a kiosk on the boardwalk and boarded the vehicle on a side street close by. This left us plenty of time to check out all the waterfront shops, take in the Titanic exhibit and even a morning ship excursion to Peggy’s Cove (a rustic fishing village about 45 minutes away, known for its dramatic lighthouse)! We enjoyed Halifax so much that we have vowed to return in order to explore further.

You can visit Halifax as a port of call on Royal Caribbean, Carnival, Celebrity, or an NCL cruise this summer and fall. They depart from NYC, Cape Liberty, Philadelphia, and Boston.
Next week I’ll share some information on St John, New Brunswick, another great port of call on a Canada / New England cruise.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Celebrity's Wine Experience

I’m not much of a drinker, but I do occasionally enjoy a glass of wine with my meal. As a matter of fact, on a recent cruise I purchased a bottle of my favorite at dinner one night. The assistant waiter opened it and with much gallantry poured a small amount into my glass. He then stared at me expectantly. I suppose I could have picked up the glass and eyeballed the liquid, swirled it round and round, sniffed it, swished it…but hey, it was only a $12 bottle of White Zinfandel!!!

Did you ever wish you knew more about wine so you could order with confidence? Or learn how to taste wine as the experts do? Celebrity Cruise Line’s Wine Experience is a great way to learn the basics and have some fun on your next cruise. Start with the “Wine Appreciation” class that is offered on many Celebrity ships. This is a great way for beginners to learn the basic elements of wine and a chance to sample five different styles. Move up to “Walk Around the World” where there will be twelve different wines available for tasting. Take the time to let the wine impact your senses, from sight and scent to taste, aftertaste, and the overall impression that the wine leaves behind when you’ve finished. Sommeliers will join you to answer your questions, and explain the regions and characteristics of each wine presented.
In the “Riedel Comparative Wine Class” you will learn how the shape of a glass affects the aroma and taste of what you’re sampling. To illustrate this, four varieties of wine are compared and transferred into different glasses so you can experience the alteration. Everyone that attends this seminar will take home a set of Riedel tasting glasses. And now that you know more about wine than when you boarded your cruise, finish up with the Connoisseur Dinner. This magnificent five course wine pairing dinner showcases both exquisite high end wines and the fine cuisine of a Celebrity specialty restaurant.

The Celebrity “Wine Experience” was created to give you the essential knowledge needed to feel comfortable ordering and tasting wine. Don't worry if your preferences are different from other people around you. Everyone has their own tastes and the exciting thing about wine tasting is discovering exactly what your tastes are. Best of all, this program offers participating guests an enriching experience that will be enjoyed long after the cruise has ended.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Celebrity Solstice Galley Tour

My wife and I were lucky enough to be invited to a galley tour onboard the Celebrity Solstice. To see all of our photos of the cruise ship cooks in action, click here to visit our facebook page.

Saturday, June 06, 2009

Photos of Turkey from Celebrity Solstice Cruise

We have just posted all of our photos from Istanbul & Kusadasi, Turkey while onboard our Celebrity Solstice cruise vacation. To see the photos from Turkey, click here and visit our facebook page.
More to come...

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Gotta Dance

“Gotta Dance” is the name of a documentary that premiered at the 2008 Tribeca Film Festival. The film chronicles the adventures of a senior hip hop dance team, (that’s senior citizens, not high school seniors), from auditions to performing center court at a New Jersey Nets basketball game. The movie will show up at a theater near you this summer. So what, you say! What does this have to do with cruising? Well, allow me to continue.

“Gotta Dance” is a new guest participatory experience aboard Royal Caribbean ships that was inspired by this movie. Cruisers of all ages and all levels of experience are welcome to embrace their 15 minutes of fame the next time they’re onboard a Royal Caribbean cruise. The program is currently being piloted on select ships where advance screenings of the movie are being shown. Participating guests are then divided into teams, with each spending their sea days learning and practicing their own distinct dance routine. All dance numbers were choreographed by the New Jersey Nets Dance Coach, but are taught by one of the talented members of the Royal Caribbean dance team. Since instructors don’t know what kind of ability (or lack thereof) they will be working with, routines may be fine tuned based on the groups skill level. Then, on the last evening of the cruise, all teams perform at the Farewell Show held in the ship’s main theater.
Everyone that has ever watched a spectacular Royal Caribbean production show has likely dreamed about being able to get up there too! The dancers always look like they’re having a great time, they make it look so easy, and you begin to think hey, I can do that! (Well, not me…sure it looks fun and I love to watch, but I have a tough enough time following my aerobics instructor!) But I bet you’d love to try it! And you can…the program becomes available fleet wide this summer! I’ll be cheering for you!

Monday, June 01, 2009

NCL Spirit Cruise Review – by Michelle Pachomski

As I stepped onboard the Norwegian Spirit, I was handed a glass of champagne (…it was a good way to start my cruise). We were heading to Bermuda on a seven-night cruise from Boston.

Ship Decor

The Grand Centrum, the atrium area of the ship, was very pretty with a curved staircase leading up to the next deck. This ship had an Oriental theme to it and the color scheme was more subdued than other NCL ships with jewel tone colors throughout.


Our staterooms were not yet ready so we headed to the pool deck and found a lounge chair to relax on. Lunch was being served in Raffles buffet and we took our plates out by the pool to enjoy the beautiful day. There is a separate kid’s pool, which had a pirate theme to it and was very popular with the younger crowd.

Our balcony cabin was ready at approximately 2pm. It was nicely decorated. There were only four drawers in the cabin for your clothes, but the closet had shelves on one side. I would suggest bringing some extra hangers as those were limited. There is a coffee maker in each stateroom, which was a great surprise. There is only one 110-volt outlet in the cabin that cannot accommodate a hairdryer over 500 watts. The beds were very comfortable and one of my favorite things about this cruise was falling asleep at night with the balcony door open listening to the waves.


The shows in the evening were all enjoyable. There was a musical montage of several different Broadway shows one night. The Second City improv group performed another night. There was also an Illusionist who had us guessing how he performed all of his magic tricks. On the last evening at sea, there was a staff variety show. Several members of the crew either sang or danced for us. The amazing finale included the Captain and many of the crew members on stage.

The casino was quite lively, with many different game tables as well as slot machines. I am sorry to say I did not win anything, but I had fun anyway.


There are two main restaurants, “Windows” and the “Garden Room”. Both serve the same menu, but the “Windows” restaurant is very pretty with beautiful windows, an elegant atmosphere and enchanting décor. It was one of the nicest areas of the ship. The dress code is “resort casual”. Passengers are not permitted to wear shorts in any of the dining rooms during dinner and this rule was enforced. Guests wishing to wear shorts are permitted in Raffles buffet, which serves breakfast, lunch and dinner. Soft serve ice cream is served in the afternoon, and at approximately 3pm, hand scooped ice cream is available as well.

Weather permitting, there is a barbeque on the pool deck with hot dogs, hamburgers, chicken and salad all served in the afternoon. On several occasions, another type of food was served as well. Paella was served alongside the BBQ buffet and another day it was tacos with all the fixings. The Blue Lagoon is a great place for a snack day or night. My favorites were the chicken wings and the spinach artichoke dip. Seating is limited, but worth the wait.

If you are in the mood for a pretzel, the Biergarten is the place to go. It is located just above the pool deck and serves burgers, hot dogs, knockwurst and sauerkraut. If you don’t want to leave your cabin for food, you can order room service. I would recommend the BLT and chips.

There are several specialty restaurants that have a per person fee. We ate at Cagney’s Steakhouse one evening and the food was superb! There is a $25.00 per person fee but we felt the price was well worth it. My prime rib was cooked to perfection and accompanied by potatoes au gratin and creamed spinach. The other specialty restaurant we chose to eat in was Teppanyaki, a hibachi style restaurant. The food and the chef were terrific. I had the Land and Sea, filet mignon and shrimp. All entrees are served with miso soup, seaweed salad, and vegetables. This specialty restaurant also had a $25.00 per person fee.


Champagne Charlie’s is a great place to meet before or after dinner for a drink and to listen to music. The Galaxy of the Stars lounge is a great place to find entertainment. This is where bingo is held; some of the shows are performed here as well. This lounge also hosts an entertaining game show for adults called Quest which involves members of the audience and, of course, the White Hot Dance Party. This party is not to be missed. Everyone wears something white to the Galaxy of the Stars lounge for this party. Members of the staff wear angel wings and are on the dance floor with the guests. The DJ was great and the dance floor was always full. Henry’s Pub offers drinks, karaoke and freshly popped popcorn.

Our Destination – Bermuda

Bermuda is a beautiful island. The ship arrived at the Royal Navy Dockyard. There are many things to see and at the Dockyard (including some nice shops) and, if you didn’t want to walk around the Dockyard, there is a free trolley car. A Maritime Museum and Dolphin Quest were also within walking distance. Snorkel Beach was a nice little beach with music. The sign posted stated it was the best snorkeling in Bermuda and many people snorkeling here. You can bring your own snorkel gear or rent it here. You can also rent chairs, floats and umbrellas. There is also easy access to the ferry or bus to reach other areas of the island. I would highly recommend Horseshoe Bay for beach-lovers. It is a pink sand beach that was absolutely gorgeous. To the right side of the beach is a small lagoon area where kids could splash about. You can rent chairs for $10.00 per day plus a $5.00 deposit. There is a small snack bar to purchase burgers, drinks, etc.

We took the bus to Hamilton and toured the shops. There are many different shops offering everything from souvenirs, liquor, linens, and glasswork to books. The shop owners were very friendly and helpful. There was truly something for everyone.

We didn’t get to see St. George (Bermuda’s 3rd major port) because we simply ran out of time. Well, maybe next cruise!

Overall Experience

This cruise was both relaxing and fun. My onboard experience was terrific and I cannot wait to get back to Bermuda.