If you need a smoking area, the 3rd deck has lots of chairs and the 9th floor behind the pool has about 10 tables (with enough chairs).
The Windjammer cafe can get crowed, so be early if you want to get a table.
Morning coffee with a few people each morning on deck outside Windjammer. Enjoyed self serve ice cream on deck outside Windjammers. My wife and grandson loved eating snack or lite lunch at Park Café in Solarium.
The only piece of advice I would offer is to talk to as many people as possible. Ship crew and patrons. The personalities and experiences the people have and share are what really make this experience once in a lifetime.
Wow, a difficult question, I can only say enjoy as much of what is available as you can. It's all out there.
If you want a quiet shipboard experience, try the solarium and the deck chairs beyond it.
It needs more deck chairs, and clearer / better rules and enforcement of "chair reservation" or "territory marking" practices (holding a chair despite not occupying it by placing personal articles on the chair).
For my-time dining, either eat before 7:00 or make reservations. If you try to eat later, you will find the ding room full.
You get good discounts if you make all of your specialty dinner and tour reservations before the trip. I highly recommend you make dinner reservations for the main dining room too; having the anytime dining option does not mean that they can accommodate you when you suddenly show.
- For at sea days, get to the main pool area very early if you want a deck chair. - Book your excursions before you get on board as some of the more popular ones sold out even before the cruise - Eat at My Time dining and do try the specialty restaurants
If you want to lounge with a friend on deck during a cruise day, get all your things together and grab two chairs before 10am.
Keep busy and eat a lot.
The Park Cafe is a hidden secret :) it is a warm place to enjoy time together, there are very short lines and a great place for snacks.
The Windjammer is the best place to get your food fast as it is a buffet style. Book as many of your excursions with the cruise line prior to departure as they fill up fast.
Super friendly staff. Wasn't sure what to expect as first time cruisers. We enjoyed it all. Lots to take in and see. Relax and enjoy the trip. Enjoy not having to unpack your things every few days and be at home. Be prepared to be waited on and enjoy it.
Be sure to try the Japanese restaurant on board. They had the best miso soup I have ever had.
Lunch in the dinning room is much better than in the windjammer. My recommendation is the Tuti Salad.
Plenty of extra amenities available if you want them (lobster and/or surf and turf every night in the main dining room, specialty dining, special water or sparkling water, etc.) for a price; but we found the multiple offerings on the main menu were plenty to satisfy us. Forget spending the extra $$
Go to the Windjammer Cafe or the Parks Cafe - the price of the food for these places are included into the cruise price. Consider not getting the Royal Replenish package - I did not drink soda on the ship as it was a bit colder out and they had coffee and tea sitting out (and a ice cream dispenser).
If you are heading to the Windjammer for a meal, and don't want to go through the open pool deck area (which was always cold and windy for us), or through the casino, just walk the length of the hall on deck 3 or 4 and go to the elevator at the front of the ship. It puts you right there.