Having never cruised to Maine and Canada, we picked this cruise for the change of pace from our usual Caribbean cruises and the close proximity of the Grandeur to our home in Baltimore. It didn't disappoint us! The leaves in Maine were just about to reach their peak so we were treated with red maples, sugar maples, and the smell of pine trees everywhere in Acadia National Park and Cadillac Mountain in Bar Harbor. Our other side trips to Kennebunk, St. John, NB, and Halifax, NS were long days on a bus (6-7 hours), but we were glad we took them because everything was a first for us. Be prepared for lobster dinners everywhere and blueberry pie! The Grandeur is the Grandeur, an old ship that tries to keep pace with the times, but struggles in certain areas. The beds and pillows could be improved. In spite of this, we would recommend this cruise for everyone!
Our experience on Anthem was terrific up until the cruiseline cut the trip short by two days due to anticipated bad weather. We missed Barbados and St. Kitts. The embarkation and disembarkation process was the fastest we ever experienced anywhere. Our balcony room on the 9th floor was beautiful and always clean and made up twice a day. We did not like rotating through four dining rooms (we had classic dining) and missed having one large dining room, although our waiters traveled with us. Every dining room has a different theme and beautiful decorations, especially Silk. Chops and Jamie's were delicious and a nice break from the regular dining. We thought the onboard activities were the usual silly ones found on cruise ships. The entertainment everywhere was awesome and both the musicians and performers were so talented!! Don't miss Spectra and The Gift. Read your Compass newsletter daily though to know where the entertainment is because some people missed performances because that's the only way to find out where and when. Don't miss Will Joy in the Schooner Bar--he is a pianist that plays throughout the trip. So talented! We took the All Access tour of the ship and learned so much about the Anthem. Our favorite shore excursion was in St. Maarten racing on the America's Cup yachts--what an adventure! All in all, we loved the cruise, the staff and the ship!