My sophomore year of college, I had just returned to the States from Costa Rica. By the time spring break rolled around, I was craving another adventure where the temps were higher, and the palm trees abundant. I mentioned it to my mom one day while we were on the phone, and that neither of us had ever been on a cruise. We were looking at deals for cruises, and found one with Royal Caribbean. It’s needless to say that those last couple of classes before our vacation were a breeze when I knew what awaited me! Here is my review of our experience with them!
My mom, grandma, and I opted to drive down to Port Canaveral and stayed at the Radisson Resort at the Port the night before we were due to get on the ship. The Radisson offered a package to leave our car there for the duration of the cruise and take their shuttle to the port. This definitely made the logistics of our trip much easier!
Once we were on board the Enchantment of the Seas, it was time to explore. We checked out the different levels of the ship, starting with the huge, super nice pool! One of my favorite things to do was read on our balcony and watch the ship slice through the endless waters. Talk about a view!
food review: is Royal Caribbean allergen-friendly?
Food was the part of this experience we were most nervous about. All three of us are allergic to dairy, my mom can’t have gluten, and I’m vegan. Pair those complications with all-you-can-eat buffets, and disaster ensues. We were advised to email the support staff in advance about our allergies, which I did.
Unfortunately, I cannot consider this cruise as very accommodating to special diets. It may be different since we took this cruise in 2016, but let’s just say we were grateful that we picked a shorter cruise when we realized how difficult it was to have access to allergen-free foods we had notified them about.
Our first port stop was in Nassau, Bahamas. I had signed up for a dolphin encounter excursion. The dolphins were adorable, and the staff was so friendly. There are also pictures available for purchase afterwards. But, after seeing the amount of space they have to swim and the amount of tourists they are around every day, I don’t think I would do it a second time. Again, I am vegan, so this definitely alters my view towards experiences like this.
After my dolphin encounter, I met up with my mom and grandma to relax on the adults-only beach a short walk away. This was one of the best parts of the trip. It was everything I had envisioned the Bahamas to be, and more. I loved asking locals what their favorite restaurants were, and which foods to try. I would go back to this specific beach in a heartbeat.
Our second stop was to Royal Caribbean’s private island. They had food, which was delicious red beans and rice with corn and fruit. They also had meat for all you omnivores (and carnivores) out there! It’s possible I enjoyed this day even more than the day before. My mom and I just had to pick a spot on the sand, and the rest was done for us.
I would say that’s probably the best part of a cruise experience: the legwork is mostly done for you. Another part of this day was the glass-bottom boat tour. It was so cool to see all the marine life below us, and our guide was so fun. It was both relaxing and informative. This is a great excursion if you’re looking for something laid-back.
My in-total Royal Caribbean review? My first cruise experience was enjoyable, minus the food issues. I definitely want to do another one someday! There is something that is just so nice about having your food, transport, lodging, and entertainment in one. For anyone heading out on a cruise themselves, bon voyage and enjoy!
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