Third Mate

Joined: 10/28/2015
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About siefkenfamily


siefkenfamily's Past Cruises

Jewel of the Seas

August 2016 - 7 Night Greece & Turkey (Rome Roundtrip) Cruise on Jewel of the Seas

This is the way to see the Mediterranean!

Jewel of the Seas was clean, spacious and the crew was top-notch.  Boarding was a breeze and we were in our stateroom in just minutes.  We were immediately invited by our stateroom attendant to have lunch at the Windjammer Cafe - he saw we were tired, hungry and jet-lagged from our flight from Boston.  While we were out, Sandy made-up the bunk-bed so our children would not have share a bed.


Dinners in the main dining room were top-notch.  We loved the local flair of each port in addition to alternatives in case not everyone in the group wanted to try ratatouille (I did and it was good!).  Our servers Francisco and Pavlo took great care of us - we loved their stories of visiting the ports and cool things we should look for. 


Main pool area was extremely crowded on cruise dates (as is the case with most cruises) but we found other areas to sit outside and enjoy the sunshine - just a short walk fro the pool.  Outdoor bartenders were fantastic.  When I told Tonica that this was the first time I splurged on a drink package, she made us the most delicious fruit drinks - always asking our likes and knowing what to put in.


Evening shows were fun - comedy/magician headliner was great.  Theater was very modern feeling and spacious.  Enough bar space not to have drinks get in the way of the show.


Ports were all fun on the ship - a real variety of options allowed us to get out early for some and see everything, or just leisurely wander around the port city in others.  It was nice to mix it all up.


Kudos to the Jewel Of The Seas Staff.  This was our 2nd time with RCI - and they have set the standard very highHappy

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Independence of the Seas

December 2015 - 5 Night Western Caribbean (Ft. Lauderdale Roundtrip) Cruise on Independence of the Seas

A Relaxing Vacation For Sure

Just returned from a 5 Night Cruise with Royal Caribbean on Independence of the Seas.  What a great, relaxing vacation.   I just wish I had booked a longer trip!


The ship is great for families as there were activities for all of us.  While the main areas (pool / dining) were crowed during peak times (expected on a full ship), simply scheduling time around peak meant plenty of time around the pool, in the hot-tubs and seaside table in the main dining room (My Time). 


The ship was clean, modern and the staff was amazing.  Food was delicious and there was so much variety that we had dinner in the main dining room every night and I never had the same thing twice.  


Flow-Rider and Rock Wall Climbing were big hits with the kids.  The wife and I thoroughly enjoyed the entertainment both on the skating rink and in the main theater.  


Labadee and Falmouth were great ports (be sure to take a shore excursion at Falmouth or it's just souvenir shopping).  I saw some of the most beautiful sunrises, on the top deck while enjoying a cup of coffee.

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siefkenfamily's Tips

Santorini, Greece - After tender, consider taking the boat around the island that meets-up with a coach that takes you to the exact spot as the cable-car. Cable car lines are 1 to 1-1/2 hours which leaves little time at the top. The coach option not only get you there quicker, but you get to see the other part of the island. I think boat/coach option is 20 Euros.
Jewel of the Seas Jewel of the Seas - We love oceanside seating at dinner. We found out that an earlier My-Time dining seating makes that possible. 6:30 was earlier than we normally eat dinner, but we got an ocean window table the entire cruise and were done in time to catch the entertainment and take and evening stroll on deck.
Independence of the Seas Independence of the Seas - Be open to doing things at off times. Go to the pool early (9a-11a), go to afternoon shows, eat late (8pm) - and the full ship doesn't feel so full.

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