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Cruise of a Lifetime

A couple of weeks ago, my family and I went on a Caribbean cruise.  I wasn’t too sure what to expect since I have never been on a cruise before.  Well, needless to say, I was amazed at the sheer size of this ship.  The cruise line that we went on was the Royal Caribbean – Allure of the Seas.  We picked this ship since it was named the Best Cruise Ship by Travel Weekly readers. http://www.travelweekly.com/rcfinalist.aspx  It is also one of the largest cruise ships in the world.   It is definitely an architectural marvel at sea.  This ship has seven different themed areas, which they call neighborhoods.  They include Central Park, The Boardwalk and the Royal Promenade.  Our balcony looked over Central Park which was a mini replica of New York’s Central Park, minus the horse and carriage rides.  It did have real trees with real birds.  The Boardwalk neighborhood is reminiscent of an eastern seaside resort town such as Coney Island with hot dog stands,  Jonny Rockets, Ice cream, carnival games, and even a carousel for kids.  The Royal Promenade is an area that has shops, restaurants, and bars.  Our favorite bar was the Cool Rising Tide Bar which is the first moving bar at sea.  While sipping on your favorite cocktail, the bar moves between three decks.  The Royal Promenade also hosts street parties, parades, and aerial acrobatics.

 

After exploring the ship, it was time to try out some of the on-board activities.  The Allure of the Seas offers the traditional cruise ship activities such as shuffleboard and swimming, but this ship sets itself apart from other smaller ships by the different activities that are offered.  For example, the kids wanted to try out the FlowRider surf simulators. http://www.waveloch.com/attraction/flowrider-double/ The FlowRider sends water at a very high speed across a small area that mimics what it is like to surf on the ocean.  Passengers can try stand-up as well as boogie boarding.  Since my kids have never surfed before, I got some pretty funny videos.  After an hour or so on the FlowRider, my wife and I tried the rock climbing wall as the kids went ice skating.  The next day, the family met up for a round of miniature golf.  This is always a fun family activity with a great view of the ocean as a backdrop to the game.  One other unique feature this ship offers is an on-board zip line.  The zip line soars 9 decks above the Boardwalk neighborhood and it stretches 82 feet.

 

 

On the days that we were cruising and did not stop at any ports, there was still plenty to do.  The kids and my wife participated in a pool volleyball tournament while I played a pick-up game at the full-size basketball court.

 

Between the activities, casino, 3D movie theater and all the shows (day and night), we were never at a loss of what to do.  The evening entertainment such as the Broadway musicals, magicians, and comedians were all first class.

 

While on board, we took plenty of pictures and videos.  Before we left on vacation, I was sure to bring many Penless Postcards. https://www.penless.com/ With the Penless Postcards, I uploaded the videos of the kids trying the FlowRider, or one of us zip lining onto the QR Code.  I also uploaded pictures of Central Park or the Boardwalk just to show friends and family back home just how amazing this ship is.  Once my friends and family receive the postcard, they just scan the QR Code to see our adventures.

 

The Allure of the Seas was paradise on board ship and was not just a cruise, but an adventure!

 

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