by Lindsay Barber
September 22, 2001
I sailed on the 9/22/01 sailing of the Celebrity Century to San Juan, St. Thomas, St. Marteen, and Nassau. I thought the cruise was excellent and the food was the BEST. The only thing that bothered me was the nightlife activities - there were none. Please note that I am 23 and I was looking for a very relaxing cruise, which I got. But I was also looking for a little bit of nightlife after 11pm!
Disembarkation was wonderful. We walked right in, received our keys, and went straight to the ship - about 10 minutes. More security has been added and we showed our ID about 4 times to get on the ship. Once on the ship, we were taken to our room. We had an inside cabin, which was great. Plenty of storage and room to move around. But bring your own hair dryer!!!
The food was excellent - no fabulous. I didn't think the food could get any better than Carnival - I was wrong. It was wonderful. I recommend every soup and chocolate dessert they make. The only item I was not happy with was the pasta. The fish and meats were excellent and the sauces they used were out of this world. This was the best part of the cruise for me. For breakfast and lunch we ate at the Island's Cafe buffet. It was excellent as well. I just wish they would charge me an extra $20 before the cruise to get unlimited soft drinks. They are about $2.25 each. The alcohol isn't priced any higher than it would be if you went out to a nice restaurant.
Seating by the pool was another bonus. We could always find seats. The band Xtasea was also pretty good.
San Juan - we got into San Juan late because of weather. The minute we were off the ship, people were giving us free tastings of Rum. We just decided to walk around Old San Juan and walk by the old forts. Wish we were there during the day though.
St. Thomas - was by far the best port and I would go back there in a minute. My recommendation is not to do a shore excursion. When you get off the ship, bargain with the taxi drivers. For $20/person we received an hour tour at the best viewing points and he dropped us off and picked us up from the beach. We went to Meagan's Bay Beach ($3 admission) and it was GORGEOUS. Because we were there in September there weren't a lot of people and it was great! The water was really warm and beautiful. I don't recommend this beach to go snorkeling. You can also get a ferry to St. John, which has one of the most beautiful beaches in the world.
St. Marteen - this is the place to buy liquor if you plan on it. Great shopping here. You can take a water taxi from the ship to main shopping area for $5/round trip or $3 one-way. We discovered a little St. Marteen museum and spent some time in their learning about the islands history and hurricanes that have come through. One lady explained to us that she took a taxi to the French side of the island and because of the bad traffic on the island (one a couple of ways over there) they only had about an hour before having to be back at the ship.
Nassau - not a great place. I think my expectations were set to high because I always wanted to go there. It wasn't really a beautiful place and the shopping prices are awful. If I go back I will go to the Atlantis.
Overall it was great. We had to wait about 2 hours to get off the ship in Ft. Lauderdale because of a nasty storm. Other than that, we found our bags right away.
Thanks for the fun Century :-)