CruiseMates' Readers Cruise Reviews

Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines Radiance of the Seas by Cheryl Lark Hawaii October 20, 2002

We sailed from Vancouver, BC to Hawaii with 5 days at sea before reaching Hawaii. We had a pre cruise stay at the Fairmont Waterfront Hotel. Our pre cruise stay was booked through our on-line TA with Royal Caribbean. Royal Caribbean had reserved a City View. We upgraded ourselves to a Harbor View. We stay in room 1012. Two big picture windows. Absolutely beautiful. We could see the Radiance head on from our window. The hotel is steps away from the pier. We took a taxi from the airport to the hotel. Taxi are plentiful at the airport, about $26 Canadian.

Embarkation Day: We had to have our luggage ready to be picked by the Bellhop at about 9am. We were checked in for the ship at the hotel by RCCL representive. Hotel checkout is at 12 noon. I would recommend, to do your ship checkin, get breakfast and then check out of the hotel. We waited in the hotel lobby until 11:30am. We walked across the street to the pier to board the ship as a group, lead by a RCCL representive. We were in our cabin about 12:30-12:45pm. Our luggage arrived about a hour to hour and a half later. We had cabin 7600, E3 deck 7 starboard midship. We could see straight down into the water from our balcony. The balcony had 2 chairs with a table. The cabin was comfortable for 2 people.

Sea Days: Time to get to expolore the ship and the spa. I visited the casino and left the casino unhappy :-( I didn't win a thing. My husband played bingo. We ate at Portofino's for our 20th wedding anniversary. The food, service and atmosphere was wonderful. 5 coarse meal beautifully presented. The ate in the dinning room only once and that was embarkation day. We were supposed to have a table for 2, but we had a table for 4. We really enjoyed our tablemates but preferred the variety of the Windjammer buffet. The food we had in the dinning room was presented well and tasty. The food in the Windjammer was also tasty. We played pool on the self leveling pool table. It was cool shooting pool while the ship was rocking and the balls staying in place. My husband enjoyed spin class, which by the way is extra, I believe it cost $10 a class. I loved my seaweed wrap and massage and my husband now knows what the fuss is about having a pedicure and manicure. He had a hand and foot/leg massage with his manicure and pedicure. The entertainment on the ship was good.

Hilo was our first port. Docked at the pier. There are free shuttles to Wal-Mart, yes Wal-Mart and Hilo Hatties (store the ship recommends for shopping). I would recommend renting a car if you don't do any tours. We did not do a tour or rent a car and I wish we had rented a car. Hilo has black sand beaches and I would have loved to have seen them. I did toooo much shopping. Across the street from Wa-Mart was Sears and Macy.

Kona...We had to tender over to Kona. This is where the IronMan sporting event is held. We missed it by a week. Lots of shops to explore.

Maui-Lahaina....We tendered over to Lahaina and was docked there overnight. We rented a car and explored the mountains. Great picture postcard opportunities. Winding roads and scary cliffs. I took lots of pictures of the mountains, waves and surfers. Enjoyed driving around and exploring the island. We attended the Old Lahaina Luau and enjoyed it very much. My husband did the sunrise Maui bike downhill tour the next morning. He raved about the tour. I would like to do a land tour on this island.

Kauai....Docked at the pier and again free shuttles to shopping places. I there are no tall building on this island. I woiuld like to do a land tour on this island and relax on the beaches.

Honolulu was our port of disembarkation. Did not get a chance to do anything. We had an early afternoon flight home.

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