“Welcome to the first day of the most amazing cruise vacation of your life” – these words are taken from the Cruise Compass that you will find in your cabin each day, that lists all the important things to know from the safety drill, to the dining, entertainment and activities. I really enjoyed the May 11, 2012, cruise from Vancouver to Alaska. This is the perfect ship to take in the sights of Alaska as the views are magnificent and can be seen from within the ship due to the floor to ceiling windows.
Here are some more details of my May 11th, 2012 cruise, including pictures of my cabin, restaurants, swimming pool, entertainment, theatre, coffee shop, and other public areas. This is not a big ship, such as the Oasis of The Seas which can hold up to 5,200 people or so. The Radiance Of The Seas (a Royal Caribbean International cruise ship) holds about 2,200 people approximately, and is easier to get around. If you don’t want to get “lost” in a ship, then this may be the one for you, it is easy to get the feel of it, and to get your bearings compared to some of the larger ships.
As far as entertainment, what can I say? Spectacular! The entertainment was different every day, and could be viewed in the Aurora Theatre either before dinner or after dinner. Then were was also entertainment that was brought to you all around the ship, including the lobby area – named the Centrum – or to the swimming pool by DJ Terry, and the Cruise Director and his staff such as the 70’s Disco Inferno one evening in the Centrum, as well as the highly entertaining Sail Away Party at the Poolside on the first day of the cruise. There’s a movie theatre, a casino, shops, a gym, solarium, spa, kids clubs and activities.
The dining options are magnificent! I ate in the Cascades Restaurant with my CruiseOne colleagues, and we had the late dining at 8:30 pm every night. There are also a handful of specialty restaurants that are available if you wish to try something different – such as Giovanni’s Table – I tried it, and I liked it! There is also the Chef’s Table, Chops Grille, Izumi’s, Samba Grill, Rita’s Cantina and these all range in price and can go up to $30 per person, which is very reasonable. If you don’t want to spend extra money, you don’t have to….Cascade’s, and Windjammer Cafe have more than enough food for you to feast on, and the food in these two restaurants is very good quality and varies from day to day. If you are looking for specialty coffees, there’s Cafe Latte-tudes (but you will have to pay for these – they’re not included). My recommendation to you for breakfast is the Park Cafe, this place was a fantastic discovery, because first of all, I thought it was a specialty snack shop/cafe, but the food here is included in your cruise fare, and you must try it. The paninis were so delicous, I can’t even begin to describe them accurately – my favorite was the breakfast panini with eggs, cheese, spinach and salmon! It was so good, I ordered a second one! The yoghurt parfaits are tasty – there were two kinds: strawberry or mango-banana, and there were also quesadillas, as well as other types of paninis, sandwiches and fresh fruit. Close to the Park Cafe, was another counter where you could get pastries, and a coffee bar (with complimentary American coffee) and complimentary juice machine were also close by. On other cruises, I have always opted for the breakfast buffet, but this time I could not wait for my paninis at Park Cafe. Also, don’t forget to try the Boardwalk Dog House, this place serves delicious hot dogs – I tried one that was spicy turkey.
Even though the cruise was not scheduled to sail until 4:30 pm, it is important to get to the cruise terminal as early as possible. I got there at around 1:00 pm, and was actually on the ship at around 3pm (that was two hours spent in the line even though I had done my online check-in, sometimes it’s not just the cruise line, but the immigration process that could slow things down). Now for some photos that will show you around the ship, and give you some insight into my seven days of cruising enjoyment.
Firstly, we have my cabin – an Inside Cabin with no windows unfortunately, but I still loved it, it was spacious and comfortable. There was a safety video playing on the tv, and we did have our muster drill within the first few hours of getting on the ship.
The lobby of the Radiance Of The Seas is ever so spectacular, colorful, modern and one of the nicest lobbies I’ve seen on a cruise ship.
I headed to the Windjammer Cafe to take advantage of a buffet lunch that did not fail to please. What a nice welcome!
I just had to take a picture of this waiter who had some colorful drinks:
Too full now to get anything from Cafe Latte-tudes
Went to take a look around the ship, and we were still in Vancouver – not sailing yet.
The skies are still a brilliant blue, while we are in Vancouver.
Our first taste of some terrific entertainment – poolside!
And the audience joined in, every one got into vacation mode, that’s the spirit!
We were not the only ship leaving from Canada Place, so was Royal Caribbean’s Rhapsody Of The Seas
I then walked around the ship and took these pictures, some on the first day because I was so excited to see the ship, and some pictures I took on other days:
Best place to relax, and read a book, be warm and feel like you are in paradise. The birds are chirping, and you don’t need a jacket here. This is also where the Park Cafe is.
The Crown & Anchor Lounge – go here to sign up for an account so that you start getting acknowledgement each time you cruise with Royal Caribbean – you will accumulate points and/or rewards. This is not automatic membership, you have to sign up for it, so you might as well do it while you are on your cruise.
Bring your babies along, and your other kids too!
Sports time, stay fit on this ship with plenty to do!
Play mini-golf on Deck 13
You can’t go wrong with this interactive device, find out what to do, where you are, and where to go. It is truly your compass.
Read a book in the library on one of the decks, or play board games on the deck one level up
This is where spectacular entertainment was delivered every evening – The Aurora Theatre
A few pictures of the entertainment, as good as any Broadway show in the Aurora Theatre
Forgot what the dessert was called, but it was delicious!
The staff of the Cascades all get together at least two or three times, and say a few things about their team, they do a terrific job!
Dinner at Giovanni’s Table was a nice change, and for $20 – there was plenty to eat. Bring your appetite!
The most tasty and succulent chicken dish was devoured at Giovanni’s Table
The most scrumptious breakfast ever – breakfast panini – is to be had at Park Cafe in the Solarium area
I love to eat Indian food, and every day the Radiance Of The Seas had Indian items in their buffet at the Windjammer Cafe, but on this day – this Andhra Pakora Curry was undoubtedly the best!
The changing landscape – Alaska in the background
Every day there was a new towel animal design, the staff are so clever and talented
They’re hard at work in the kitchen feeding so many people; I got a look at the hard workers when I took a tour of the kitchen:
Actually, I saw long lines today (I think this picture may have been from Day 2 or 3)
As you can see, there is a lot to do and see on the Radiance Of The Seas. I have so many more pictures, and will also be including some in a video that I will produce soon. I hope you enjoyed my overviewof the cruise that I took. Actually, this could be considered a review if I give you my recommendation – and I do – I definitely recommend taking this cruise. You will love it, you won’t be bored – in fact, you’ll have way too much to do! Thank you for reading.