When I came across a 5 day cruise that would be leaving Ft Lauderdale the following week and would only cost $169 per person (yes, there would be taxes etc. but still..) my husband immediately said to book it. Within a few hours, another couple we know decided to join us too.
The cruise was on Royal Caribbean’s Liberty of the Seas. It’s a large ship with about 3600 passengers and 15 decks and I was a bit concerned about the crowds. Our ports of call were to be the cruise line’s private island in Labadee, Haiti and another in Falmouth, Jamaica. Now, like many frequent cruisers, we weren’t that interested in these destinations but were still willing to see what they had to offer.
As the ship set sail, we had our first toast of Domaine Ste Michelle sparkling wine as we had a quick bite in the massive buffet dining room. It was then time to explore the ship and I soon found that the promenade level with shops and cafes was one of the more popular spots onboard. There’s even a separate Champagne Bar and wine bar here.
Our first dining experience was better than expected. We were able to have unlimited escargots that we were told were not available on the prior week’s sailing. Lucky us! They were excellent with lots of garlic and a crusty cheese melted all over them. Not a bad start. Most of the dishes the remainder of the trip were quite good although I don’t think anything stood out quite like those escargots.
On our arrival in Haiti, our friends and I had planned to find a nice spot to snorkel on the island. Unfortunately, having almost all of the 3600 passengers debarking onto this same island , we soon found out we weren’t actually going to find a quiet, secluded spot anywhere. So, after a short time in the water and in the sun we went right back on the ship and had some drinks and relaxed by the pool until the crowds reappeared.
We were to then head to Falmouth, Jamaica that I was told is a port made by and for Royal Caribbean. But, the weather and winds had our ship head over to Montego Bay instead. Our friends chose not to bother getting off the ship and so Patrick and I ventured off and found a group taxi to take us around. After dropping off a few of the other people, we convinced the driver and another couple still in the van with us, to drive around and see things. The first thing I wanted though was a Red Stripe beer so I would know I was in Jamaica. Our driver promptly headed to some local store to get it and handed us our opened beer as we drove around with him. In the end, there really wasn’t much to see, but we met a nice couple and I had my damn good beer!
One of the main attractions back on board the ship, is their ice skating show. I had seen one before on their sister ship, Explorer of the Seas, so already knew how amazing it could be. The show and performers were outstanding. I just find it incredible that they can jump, twirl, flip and do all the hard to believe moves I see in the olympics for example, but here it’s on a moving ship. It’s really spectacular.
On our final night on the ship, I had another great meal. A fat and juicy lamb shank along with a tasty Tuscan wine was a super ending to a very fun trip. And, as always happens when one cruise ends, I just look forward to when I can go on the next.
Cheers and all the best,