Good cruise, great ports to visit, friendly staff but no WOW factor on the ship

Explorer of the Seas Cruise Review to Coastal - West Coast
Experience: 7+ cruises
Reviews: 4
Helpful Votes: 28

Overall Rating:

4.6 out of 5
Explorer of the Seas

7 Night Pacific Coastal (Seattle Roundtrip)

Sail Date: September 22, 2017

Ship: Explorer of the Seas

Cabin Type: Inside

Cabin Number: 7457

Traveled As: Couple

Reviewed: 1 year ago

Review Summary

We did enjoyed the cruise. The ports were interesting amd there was plenty of time in each port to experience them. The itenarary was the main attraction. The ship is well maintained and clean; food was good but not outstanding; the service was good but not outstanding; staff was was helpful and attentive but no WOW. However, I do recommend this cruise primarily because of the itenarary!

Embarkation

5 out of 5
Arrived at Seattle Port about 10:30am and were on board by 11:00. Room access not till 1:00 so time to explore and relax. Ate lunch in the Windjammer

Ship Experiences

Food and Dining

4 out of 5
Food was good in all 3 venues with a good selection at all meals. We did not eat in any of the "Upscale restaurants". Usually ate dinner in My Time Dining which was very crowded even though located on the Deck 3 main dining room. Staff worked hard to keep service smooth but plan on at least 1 & 1/2 hours to eat. We finally found Fredderick and Laura as our servers who were very good and we asked for them the last 3 nights. Robin Itur was very accommodating in finding a table for us in their area. We split time between the Windjammer and the Dining room for breakfast & lunch. Note: "Formal NIght" in the Main Dining Room is not "enforced"; even the Compass says you can wear just about anything but shorts and flipflops. The guests who did really "dress-up" sitting next to those in a "tee shirt" was a bit strange.

Onboard Activities

4 out of 5
Dan Dan and Amy did a good job on scheduling a variety of activities. We spent most of our time either off ship in the ports or relaxing.

Entertainment

4 out of 5
The Ice Skating Show was great! There was a unique way of schedule your reservation - by muster station. Fortunately, ours was on a "sea day" and did not interfere with other planned activities' The 70's dance party on the Royal Promenade was pretty good. The two "production numbers" on days 2 & 7 were pretty good. The other "headliners" were OK with the exception of Tony Tillman on day 6 who was very good. We usually enjoy spending time in the Schooner Bar listening to the piano player but it seemed a bit small and seats were hard to find. Same goes for the Karaoke in the Tavern.

Service and Staff

4 out of 5
Our room attendant - Shakey- was very helpful; he was returning home after the next week before the ship leaves for Australia, Fredderick, Laura and Robin Itur were very good in the Main Dining Room. Staff was friendly and helpful but there was no real "WOW" factor.

Ship Quality

5 out of 5
Very clean and well maintained; even the Windjammer!

Cabin / Stateroom

5 out of 5
It works just fine for our needs. It was also very quite. The only problem was you could not hear any announcments in the room. You had to open your cabin door and even then it was mostly garbelled.

Ship Tip

My Time Dining reservation should be made in advance to assure a reasonable wait time in line. However, without knowing the schedule of evening activities, you may either miss something or skip your reservation and "hope for the best". Most evening entertainment was at 6:30 and 8:30 with other activities starting at 10:00.

Ports Of Call

Seattle, Washington

5 out of 5
Be sure to visit Pike's Market and the Space Needle. Easy embarcation process

Astoria, Oregon

5 out of 5
Visited Fort Clatsop where Lewis & Clark wintered, very interesting. Don't miss the Columbia Maritime Muesum. Also went to the Astoria Column was proviedes a good panoramic view on the area. Town is about a mile and 1/2 from the dock with a paved well marked sidewalk. Town is quaint and worth your time to visit.

San Francisco, California

5 out of 5
Lots to do and see. The ship docked within an easy walk to Fisherman's Wharf which we went to in the evening as we had an overnight stay. The Bay Tour was good with alot of information on the city's history; Alcatraz Island was booked up. We also took the "Hop on/ Hop Off Bus" which was a disaster, very crowded and our buses kept breaking down. You were afraid to get off because the lines of people waitng to get on were very long. The "Big Bus" did have designated "cruise only buses" which were not enforced. Our 2 hour trip took over 4 hours on a very hot 95' day, The next day we went to the Muir Woods which is an excurision I recommend. We wanted to ride the cable car but the closest one was broken down.

Victoria, British Columbia

5 out of 5
We had visited the Garden's on an earlier trip so we took the "O Canada" excurision wich gave us a tour of the local area and then dropped us off downtown. There was an easy and picturesqe walk back to the ship.

Disembarkation

5 out of 5
BEST EVER!!! NO LINES at customs; just show your passport and walk right out.
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