Navigator of the Seas Live Blog - Day 1 - Embarkation Day

In:
18May2019
By: 
Matt Hochberg

We are back with our next live blog and this week we are headed on Navigator of the Seas.

Royal Caribbean invited me to come sail on Navigator of the Seas for the purposes of checking out the revamped Perfect Day at CocoCay. We will have more on that tomorrow, but in the meantime let us talk about my first day on Navigator.

Prior to the cruise, I stayed at the Holiday Inn Express Miami Airport East.  It was quite affordable ($80/night) and well kept.  I will have a more in-depth review on the hotel later, but it is a great affordable choice for a pre-cruise hotel near the airport.

The nice thing about staying near the airport is Lyft drivers are plentiful, and I grabbed a ride to the port following a meeting I had earlier in the morning.

Check-in at Terminal A at PortMiami is as simple as it was on Symphony of the Seas or Mariner of the Seas in previous sailings. Frankly, it is impressive how quickly you move through the entire process.

Once onboard Navigator, it felt like a homecoming being on Navigator of the Seas again.  Being a few months post-dry dock, the ship still has that "new ship feel" and I relished being back onboard.

As is tradition for me, I grabbed lunch at the Windjammer and it did not disappoint. I love the variety of food, and it hit the spot.

After lunch, I had to check out the ship and see some of the venues that were not quite complete when I sailed on her right before Navigator launched post-dry dock. Frankly, it is impressive the layout and flow of the pool deck. 

Staterooms were ready at 2pm (a bit of a departure from the usual 1pm time) and I have a balcony room for this sailing.

The room looked great, and I loved how much space there was around the room. 

One of the venues I wanted to check out was the redesigned Adventure Ocean space.

Instead of Adventure Ocean groupings segregated by age, Navigator of the Seas combines the kids in one group with activity areas based on interest.

I will defer a review of this until my kids get to sail with me, but the space is impressive.

Following muster drill, it was time for sail away. The Miami sail away is among the most beautiful and scenic cruise sail aways that exist and I loved passing by all the beautiful (and expensive) homes that I could only dream of living in one day.

Prior to getting ready for dinner, I had to jump on the Navigator of the Seas water slides. I rode both the Blaster and Riptide slides and it was a lot of fun. While I had ridden the Riptide before, the Blaster was a great tube ride slide.  Riptide is just a plain-simple head-first rush. 

As day turned to evening, members of the media met at the Lime and Coconut for cocktails and a lovely sunset at sea.

Dinner this evening took me to Hooked.  I have dined at Hooked a couple of times, and I opted for the messy fish sandwich.  The key to the messy fish sandwich is to press the sandwich down as much as possible prior to eating.

We called it an early evening, because tomorrow will be a full day at Perfect Day at CocoCay tomorrow.

Stray Observations

  • On this sailing, the new souvenir Coca-Cola souvenir cup is the defacto cup across the ship. 
  • During the day on embarkation day, the Pub and Bamboo room were closed with interesting signs outside. 

  • The first day Cruise Compass included this Perfect Day at CocoCay laminated insert.