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cruise ship with palm trees

We just got back from our AMAZING cruise aboard Wonder of the Seas (now the 2nd largest ship in the world).

The ship was so awesome. It was so big! The atrium felt more like a shopping mall with shops, lounges, and restaurants lining the sides. We hardly felt any movement at all! (Except during the thunderstorm the last day!

Dining

The dining was decent. The taco place was great. The buffet had lots of options. We ate breakfast there most days, as well as lunch one day and dinner one night. It was easy to navigate, and had lots of seating.

The Pizza was great and we usually ended up there every late night.

Also a tip, Johnny Rockets was an extra charge for lunch and dinner, but you can get breakfast there for free!

We tried The Mason Jar brunch and it was good but not life changing. We also ate at Playmakers and it was really good! Those were the only 2 specialty dining we did, but I would say Playmakers was worth it.

We weren’t a huge fan of the Main Dining Room. We had My Time dining reservations and still had a decent wait to get in. Sometimes they had to walk us through or into one of the other levels to find a table. My Time dining means you don’t have an assigned table or the same wait staff every night, but it is a little more flexible. Personally, I didn’t care for it. But you are sat at your own table and not with strangers so it may be a good option if the larger tables aren’t your thing. I didn’t think the food was great either. (But on Royal Night, you get Lobster and it was good!) A bit better than Carnival but definitely not as good as Disney. It was pretty quick though and didn’t turn into a two hour experience like some other lines. That may have been due to the My Time Dining experience and trying to turn tables over quickly though.

Entertainment

After being pretty disappointed with Carnival’s on board entertainment aboard the Carnival Breeze, the entertainment on this ship was phenomenal! Every show was great, despite not having a broadway show. The Aqua Show was my favorite but the Ice show was great as well. Such amazing talent! There were a couple other shows that were good as well. There Is so much to do on this ship that we were never bored.

There were lots of other things on board such as the comedy show, karaoke, adult game shows, etc. My advice on these is to get there early! The adult comedy show required a reservation and the one night we had one, our son wasn’t feeling well and we had to cancel; but, the last night there was a show that didn’t require reservations that we were able to attend. Also, the Karaoke was jam packed every night so if you want to do that, best to get there early to get a seat.

live shows on board wonder of the seas

Activities

There were lots of activities on board. We really enjoyed the laser tag (make sure you make a reservation for this right after boarding.) My son had a blast on the Flowrider. He also spent some time in the arcade. My daughter liked the zip line. The Ultimate Abyss seems dark and scary but it really isn’t. The lines for the water slides get long so try to go earlier in the day or during port days. Same with the pools. The pools were really crowded. We found that the best time was during the early dinner hour as most guests were getting ready for dinner and my son had the pool to himself. This was between 6 and 7pm.

There was a family fun carnival on the boardwalk one day with music, a chocolate fountain, games and giveaways. They even had balloon swords which my son really liked (until we told him we couldn’t take it home!) They also had cotton candy and popcorn for purchase.

Another activity we really enjoyed was family crazy quest and the family silent disco.

On our last day, it was storming so a lot of the activities were closed. We decided to enroll in the cupcake decorating class and the kids really enjoyed it. It was pricey, but this momma caved because there wasn’t much else going on inside.

kid surfing, girl zipline

Service

The service was good. We never had bad service, but a couple of things to note. Our stateroom attendant cleaned our room, left a towel animal, etc. But nothing was over the top. This stateroom had a sofa that had a trundle that pulled out. Even on the Carnival cruise, they left a customized message on the mirror In our room. We had to pull it out each evening to make the bed for the kids. With Disney, they wrapped up and organized our charging cords and used things around the room to enhance the towel animal. We also Interacted more with our stateroom host and got to chat with them a little more throughout the room. Our room was always ready for bed in the evenings, including the kids beds and when we came back In the next day, it was always turned back Into the sofa and cleaned up. The fact that we had My Time dining meant that we didn’t get to build a relationship with the wait staff where they learned our preferences and told stories, etc. We had to discuss any allergies over each night as well as repeat drink orders, etc. So if you have lots of allergies, it may not be ideal. Like I said, we didn’t have bad service, but it wasn’t as exceptional as what we received on Disney Cruise Line.

Kids/Teens

We took our kids on this cruise. Our daughter is 14 and our son is 8. My daughters feedback on the teens club is that there really wasn’t a lot going on and no really structured activities like there were on Carnival and Disney. She went the first night for their meet and greet, met some friends and then just hung out with them throughout the cruise, but not really in the teen space. She said if she didn’t have a group of friends, she probably wouldn’t have just went to the teen space to hang out.

Teen hangout space

My son had similar things to say about the kids space. Now I will preface this by saying that the only time we utilized the kids club was in the evening time after dinner so that we could enjoy the adult activities. But he wasn’t too excited either. They had some video game spaces. They also had dodgeball and gaga ball tournaments which he was excited about, but those take place after 10pm, in which there is an extra fee of $10 per hour per kid. We didn’t really experience the kids club during the earlier hours in the day.

Another note about the kids club, the evenings were extremely busy and during that dinner time, there were a couple of times that they were at capacity and there was a line of people to check-in, waiting for someone to check-out, so if you want it, I would try to be there right when it opens for the evening or wait a little later.

Kids space

Ports

We visited St Thomas, St Maarten and Perfect Day at CocoCay. Our favorite was St Maarten and having been before, I knew It would be. We even took the kids on the same excursion we did on a previous trip with Captain Bob’s to go snorkeling. Saw lots of Sea Turtles and fish and a stingray or two. At St Thomas, we visited Magen’s Bay, one of the top beaches In the world. It was beautiful, but it was very crowded and I think because of that, the water wasn’t as clear.

St Thomas Mountain top
St Thomas Mountain Top with Ship
St Maarten Beach

At Perfect Day, we decided to do the water park the week before our trip due to a drop in price. I think it was around $80 a person when we purchased It. We got in early and did all of the slides before the lines got long, but we were done with it before noon and went over to the beach side. The slides were really fun, but pretty thrilling so it definitely Is a thrill water park so if you have little ones, may not be worth it. Plenty of things for them to do for free. We spent the rest of the day at Chill Island. Plenty of free chairs and beach to enjoy there. The food buffet was good and there were plenty of options. I felt it was better than the food at Disney’s Castaway Cay; however, Castaway Cay was overall better In my opinion. So many extras that you have to pay additional for at Perfect Day and everything was included at Castaway Cay.

Perfect Day water slides
Perfect Day Chill Island

Summary: This post Is not to endorse one cruise line over another, they are all great, but different just like every family Is different. These are just some observations after having been on 6 cruises since last year on several different lines. There are so many options and part of my job is to help you decide which one is best for you and your family.

My favorites so far are definitely Disney and Royal Caribbean. Based on service, food, and entertainment. I have another Royal Caribbean sailing coming soon and another Carnival sailing on a newer and larger ship and will draw further conclusions then.

Happy to answer any questions if you are trying to decide which is best for your family! I’d also love to hear about your experiences! Comment below or reach out!


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