We recently returned from a three day cruise aboard RCCL's Majesty of the Seas. The ship was scheduled to visit Coco Cay and Nassau before returning to Miami.
We arrived just before the designated boarding time of 2pm and had to stand in line about 15 minutes before our passes were issued. As usual, it seemed that those who had filled out their Sail Away information online before boarding had a much better time of it.
The ship was nicely decorated for Christmas and we were pleasantly greeted as we went on board. We found our own outside cabins on deck eight and, though very, very small, everything seemed to be in order. We only met our cabin attendant once in passing, but he did a fine job and seemed to know exactly when it was time to tidy up!
Unbelievably, it was cloudy, rainy and in the sixties when we set sail at 5pm! The wind was blowing so hard that staying outside while we left port was not a pleasant option, so we sought shelter in the Viking lounge instead. It had good service and comfortable, if a little smoky, surroundings. In fact, I know that Majesty is scheduled for a major overhaul in January, but I didn't see very many signs of it being run down or in serious need of refurbishment. My only complaint is the ever-present smell of cigarette smoke just about every where you go (including my non-smoking cabin!).
Almost the minute we left the port area, we knew we were in for some hard times. The ship began rocking and rolling more than any cruise ship I have ever been on! According to many people, the winds were higher than 30 knots and the swells were incredibly high! The barf bags appeared magically out of nowhere and were all around the ship in no time at all. Many passengers turned a lovely shade of green and before long, folks were dropping like flies!
Sure enough, just an hour or so later, the captain announced that gale force winds had forced the evacuation of all personnel from Coco Cay, RCCL's private island, so stopping there was no longer an option. He decided that we would go straight to Nassau at top speed to get out of the rolling waves. After hearing that, I assumed that we would stay docked in Nassau for a day, then either go back to Coco Cay or some other stop. Sadly, it turned out that we cruised for about six hours, docked in Nassau and parked there for two days straight! Nassau is fun for a half day or even a whole day, but 48 hours is way too much. The ship didn't schedule any extra activities due to the prolonged stop, nor were any extra perks given.
We did some time in the straw market and took the pre-requisite tour of Atlantis and the island, but we grew very tired of the insistent locals begging us to buy this or that trinket. I was more than ready to leave after the first day, and all six of the cruise ships that came in behind us did just that, but we didn't go anywhere!
Of the three shows on board, only the comedian/juggler was tolerable. The broadway 70s review the first night was nothing more than a good high school could produce, and "Johnny Thunder," an old MoTown performer, sent us to the exits after his first number on the second night.
The food in the dining room was quite good and the service was excellent! By far, it was the most satisfying experience of the whole cruise. As stated in many other reviews of this ship, there just weren't very many activities scheduled that were of any interest to the two generations of my party.
Disembarking was another big minus. Apparently there was some problem with the number of customs officials and we wound up waiting in line for about an hour before finally seeing one. I think it took the captain's attention to put whatever was wrong to rights.
All in all, it ranked last in my three cruise experiences, but then again, the worse cruise I ever went on was fun! I doubt I'll go on any other three day voyages. As one who derives the most fun being out at sea, I don't want to take a chance that I'll again spend the lion's share of the cruise aboard an immobile parked ship!