This post is made possible by Royal Caribbean! Thank you so much for hosting our first cruise and giving us the experience of a lifetime!
My husband and I went on our first cruise with Royal Caribbean through the Bahamas, St. Thomas and St. Kitts a few weeks ago! Since we hadn’t ever been on a cruise, we didn’t really know what to expect! It was hands-down one of the best vacations we’ve ever been on and definitely the experience of a lifetime! We departed for a 7-day cruise from Ft. Lauderdale on The Allure of the Seas which is one of Royal Caribbean‘s largest of their ships.
Now that we’ve been home and able to reflect on our time on the ship, we made a list of the things you absolutely MUST DO while on the cruise ship. My husband and I compiled a list of tips; while everyone is different, I hope you find this helpful if you plan to go on a cruise!
So you’ve booked your cruise, but now what? We didn’t really know what to do so it was trial and error, but we had the best time! Here are the tips we have for your cruise…
The 10 Best Things to Do on a Cruise
- Purchase the Packages – If you drink alcohol, coffee or bottled water; buy the all-inclusive drink package. We used it all day, every day. Honestly, I think we would have ended up spending more money if we hadn’t bought this. You can purchase before you go after you get your Set Sail Pass, or you can always get it when you board the ship.
- Upgrade Your Dining – We highly recommend upgrading to a few of the restaurants. We got the 3 restaurant package and even ended up eating at 2 other restaurants. We LOVED Chops Grille! I wanted to go back there and have steak and lobster every night! We also tried Sabor, Giovanni’s Table and Izumi as well as the dining hall and Windjammer (which are both included with your cruise, no extra charge).
- Eat Self-Serve Ice Cream – I had way too many ice cream cones, but when you can go serve yourself ice cream at the pool…why not? I definitely miss this already. Take advantage – it’s free!
- Excursions – In the Bahamas we visited Atlantis Resort and swam with dolphins. Then in St. Thomas we did a catamaran and snorkel excursion. We loved them both! I would recommend at least doing one excursion, and then plan at least one beach day. We did the beach day at St. Kitts which was probably one of my favorites as well.
- Adventures ON the Boat – There are so many fun things to do on the boat! Laying by the pool with a drink in hand was my favorite, but there is zip lining, basketball, mini golf, Flowrider, rock wall climbing and you can even get scuba certified! If you don’t want to do anything…find a pool chair quick, because they fill up fast and you’ll want a good one!
- Shows – Plan to see the shows at night. We made reservations when we got on the boat and had everything planned so we didn’t have to say, “What to you want to do tonight? Where do you want to eat?”…etc If we didn’t want to make the reservation, we just canceled in appropriate time before. My favorite show was the Love and Marriage talk show. SO FUNNY. The Comedy Show and Mamma Mia were great, too!
- Get the VOOM – Voom is high speed internet and I recommend purchasing it for at least one device. If you are parents like us, we HAD to facetime our babies and also post those amazing beach photos to social media! It’s worth spending a little extra for this.
- Spa – We booked two different spa days and it was H-E-A-V-E-N-L-Y. It was so relaxing and the massages were amazing.
- Visit the Casino – We went here several nights! We like to gamble, so it was fun to play Blackjack while sailing to our next destination!
- Get a Balcony Suite – We absolutely loved our room! I think I might have felt a little nauseous if we didn’t have a window or balcony suite, so when we do it again, we will get the same room!
A few other tips:
- Don’t take an iron, steamer or extension cord. You won’t be able to take them on the boat.
- There is only one outlet in the room. Take a multi-plug charger like this one to charge your devices.
- Plan for a small amount of room. Try to take as minimal as possible and slide suitcases under your bed after unpacking to maximize your small space.
- DO plan to take something for motion sickness, just in case. I ended up using it the first day in fear of being sick and then had to take it off because I couldn’t stay awake! I didn’t feel sick once, though (and I get carsick).
- Take a camera or smart phone; you will want to document your travels!
- Carry your passport and Set Sail Card when getting on and off of the boat. You will need both.
We had the best time and are already planning when we can go on one next! I’d love to do the European cruise on the new Symphony of the Seas! It looks amazing and like so much fun! Stay tuned for my recap of our 7 day cruise complete with outfits and excursion details!