Not what we planned.

Explorer of the Seas Cruise Review to Caribbean - Southern

Cruises: 7+ cruises
Reviews: 2
Helpful Votes: 55

Overall rating:

4.4 out of 5
Explorer of the Seas

9 Night Southern Caribbean (Miami Roundtrip)

Sail date: January 24, 2020

Ship: Explorer of the Seas

Cabin type: Suite

Cabin number: 1658

Traveled as: Couple

Reviewed: 2 years ago

Review summary

My husband’s flu, and my irritated lungs really put a damper on our trip. It was our first cruise without friends and was supposed to be a romantic getaway, it wasn’t. But aside from the fact that he missed 2 ports, and I was alone most of the time that he was quarantined, and we both had not quite right tummies(due to Tamiflu, it causes nausea)we tried to make the most of what we could, but he tired out very quickly. Royal Caribbean and staff were excellent! We couldn’t have been treated better. My husband was offered free room service, free movies while he was confined, but I brought him food and drink all days except when I was in Aruba, he said it was quick, and good. It wasn’t a good time to have the unlimited dining package though, neither of us felt much like eating on the Tamiflu, it was given to me as a precaution, since I am diabetic and had been exposed. It wasn’t what we had hoped for, but we did the best we could to enjoy it, RCI definitely did their part to make us comfortable.


4 out of 5

Ship experiences

Food and Dining

4 out of 5

Onboard Activities

4 out of 5


4 out of 5
The ice show was very good! Definitely go see it! Jimmy (Hopper?) was a headline singer, he was very good, but don’t sit in the front few rows! The fake smoke from the show made me cough through the entire show, then my lungs were VERY irritated and I couldn’t breathe well for almost 2 weeks after, the night of the show I was up all night with a sore throat and trying to breathe, I even saw the ships doctor, and my own when I got home. I never had a fever, and had a full blood work up when I got home, not sick, just irritated lungs that turned to bronchitis. I’m not sure what is in the smoke, but it was heavy, and had a smell. My lungs are still not quite right

Service and Staff

5 out of 5
We never went to the dining room. Our room steward, Jaypee, was amazing! My husband was quarantined to our room on day 3 with Flu A, he actually quarantined himself on day 2 when he started feeling bad. I banned Jaypee from the room till hubby’s fever broke, but he would change out our towels, pillowcases daily, we exchanged things at the door, he brought pillows and a blanket for my husbands comfort, the rooms are fine till you are stuck there, then not so comfy! He made sure we had 2 buckets of ice daily, and after the 2 days I banned him, he came in and sanitized every surface daily! He was excellent! His sweet wife Mira was our room steward in November, she recognized us right away!

Ship Quality

5 out of 5
The ship was constantly being cleaned, we sailed as the corona virus was starting to spread, and we heard about the Princess ship being quarantined. Even our hallway walls were sanitized daily. Handrails were being wiped all during the day.

Cabin / Stateroom

4 out of 5
We had a Jr Suite, very thankful for the space after my husbands quarantine. Jaypee kept it very clean and tidy.

Ship tip

Make sure to check out the helipad/front of the ship. Don’t miss the peekaboo bridge, and check out the bathrooms with floor to ceiling windows, aft deck 11. If you want a stronger drink ask for a short glass!

Ports of call

Oranjestad, Aruba

5 out of 5
My husband was still quarantined, so I bought a $10 day pass on Arubus and jumped a bus to the beach, it was beautiful! Since I got there late and wasn’t staying long, one of the vendors gave me a lounger for $5. I stayed about an hour, took pictures, then caught a bus back to port. I felt very safe here, even when I got off the bus and had to walk to find an entrance to get to the beach.

Kralendijk, Bonaire

5 out of 5
Our favorite! It wasn’t built up like Aruba or Curacao, but it was everything I wanted! I’ll be back! We rented a golf cart from Bonaire Cruiser, perfect choice! If they are all rented check out Twizzy Cars. It was a perfect way to see the island, we were only able to do the south loop, hubby was still recovering from flu. Once you get to the beaches, it’s impossible to take a bad picture! The colors...have you ever seen something so beautiful that it almost brings tears? That’s the southern loop of Bonaire! Flamingos, salt mountains, pink ponds, but the blues of the ocean topped it all! Toward the end of the south loop is Sorobon Beach at Lac Bay. If you’ve ever wanted to walk forever in hip/waist deep, clear water, this is your place! We had lunch at The Hang Out(have patience they are on island time). My margarita, tomato cheese sandwich, and lumpias(sp?)were very good. After ordering I couldn’t resist stripping down to my swimsuit and walking out into the bay. The waitress said you can walk all the way out to where the waves break over the reef and snorkel. But it would be a long walk! The reef protects the bay so there are no big waves. Lots of windsurfing. This was my happy place, I want to go back and stay longer, like more than one day.

Willemstad, Curacao

4 out of 5
We didn’t make plans for Curaçao, and hubby was still recovering, so we hopped on one of the waiting 2 hour tour busses. Sunshine Tours, our tour guide was very informative, she made it interesting and enjoyable. It is an open air tour bus, we went over the tall bridge, stopped for a taste at the Curacao distillery, went to a gift shop on top of a hill with a million dollar view, it was in the middle of a nice neighborhood, odd, but fun. At the end of the tour you could be dropped at Mambo beach(pick up 2 hours later) be dropped downtown to make your way back to port(not far, and includes walking across the floating bridge) or be dropped back at port. We went downtown and tried to get food, after 20 minutes and no one to take our order, we walked back to the ship for free food. It was fun, but our least favorite of the ABC’s


4 out of 5
We had The Key which allows for debarking when you want. It was Super Bowl Sunday in Miami, the captain had announced the day before that transportation might be an issue, so I think about half the ship decided to choose early departure with their luggage, rudeness abounded. I saw people so rude that kids were crying! Things got so bad that they halted debarking for about 20 minutes. We didn’t arrange prior transportation to FLL, but we found a shuttle pretty easy.
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