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8 mocktails to try on your next Royal Caribbean cruise

In:
12 May 2022

Drinking may be synonymous with any cruise vacation, but there are plenty of nonalcoholic beverages to enjoy while on a Royal Caribbean cruise. Nothing hits the spot like a tropical, fruity drink, whether you’re sun tanning on the pool deck or exploring one of Royal Caribbean’s private destinations.

I was curious as to what types of mocktails are available on a Royal Caribbean cruise, so I engaged in some fun “research” to taste a variety of drinks around the ship during my recent sailing. While there are endless combinations of juices, fruits, and syrups that can be turned into tasty mocktails, here are 8 of my favorite options for when you’re craving a nonalcoholic drink.

Mojito from Boleros

Boleros is the Latin-themed bar found on most Royal Caribbean cruise ships, and it is undoubtedly the best place onboard to order a mojito.

While the drink’s exact birthplace is not entirely known, it’s said that the mojito originated in Havana, Cuba. Combining white rum, lime juice, fresh mint, white cane sugar, and soda water, a mojito is both light and refreshing.

To order a virgin mojito, simply order a mojito without rum. The result tastes like an extremely fresh mint lemonade, and it was my favorite mocktail I tried while onboard.

Piña Colada

Perhaps the most famous vacation cocktail in the world is a piña colada, a frozen drink combining rum, coconut cream, and pineapple juice together. The piña colada originated in San Juan, Puerto Rico during the 1950s and has since become synonymous with a tropical vacation.

Most bars on any Royal Caribbean ship will be able to make a piña colada, although they are most commonly served on the pool deck. Ordering piña coladas without alcohol is very common and, due to the strong pineapple and coconut flavors, a virgin piña colada barely tastes any different than its alcoholic counterpart.

Not many drinks hit the spot on a warm Caribbean day like a piña colada does, and it is a must-have drink on any Royal Caribbean cruise.

Miami Vice

If you’re having a hard time choosing between a piña colada and a strawberry daiquiri… why not both? A Miami Vice is another delicious mocktail to try on a Royal Caribbean cruise, made with one side strawberry daiquiri and the other piña colada.

The combination of pineapple, strawberry, and coconut is sure to be the best of both worlds of any tropical mocktail.

Mai Tai

A Mai Tai is a classic drink to enjoy while at the beach or onboard a cruise ship. Made with Goslings Black Seal Rum, Myer’s Dark Rum, amaretto, orange juice, sweet & sour, lime juice, and grenadine, a Mai Tai brings an explosion of flavor to a tropical drink.

A Mai Tai can easily be made into a mocktail by removing the rum. I ordered a virgin Mai Tai at The Lime & Coconut bar onboard Freedom of the Seas and it was one of the best drinks I enjoyed all cruise long!

Lime & Coconut from The Lime & Coconut

If you’re sailing on a Royal Caribbean ship with The Lime & Coconut bar on the pool deck, be sure to order the signature Lime & Coconut drink without alcohol.

The Lime & Coconut is a creamy drink over ice that combines Malibu Coconut Rum, coconut milk, coconut syrup, Monin guava syrup, and lime juice for a unique fruity taste. I ordered the drink without rum to give the bar’s signature cocktail a try.

Initially I was not sure if I liked it due to flavor combinations of guava, lime, and coconut, but the drink grew on me. While I think I preferred the Mai Tai I ordered from The Lime & Coconut, both mocktails make a good choice for a sunny day on the pool deck.

Being able to order this drink is not totally guaranteed, however. When I asked the bartender on Oasis of the Seas if he could make it, he initially seemed confused but said he would try to make a virgin version (to which he did). On Freedom of the Seas, though, my bartender said he didn’t think it was possible to make it virgin and I was unable to order it.

It might be a good idea to just specify the drink order “without coconut rum” if the bartender seems confused whether or not they can make the drink without alcohol.

Coco Loco (or Labadoozie)

Royal Caribbean’s private destinations of Perfect Day at CocoCay and Labadee each have the same signature cocktail, despite the name differing between the two destinations. The Coco Loco (CocoCay) or Labadoozie (Labadee) is a frozen drink made with orange juice, pineapple juice, papaya juice, coconut cream, dark rum, coconut rum, and grenadine.

As this drink is so popular while in port, there are usually pre-made blended drinks available, and bartenders simply scoop the drink into a cup. Fortunately, this pre-made blend is nonalcoholic as the alcohol is poured into the drink once it is in the cup, so it’s an extremely easy mocktail to order.

In fact, if you’re interested in making the Coco Loco at home, we have a full recipe available on the blog.

Smoothies from Vitality Cafe

If you’re sailing on an Oasis Class cruise ship, one of my go-to “mocktails” is a fresh smoothie from Vitality Cafe, located in the Vitality Spa. Not only is a fresh fruit smoothie healthier than a mocktail loaded with added sugar, but it is extremely refreshing as well.

Smoothies at Vitality Cafe are entirely customizable, from selecting which fruits you would like to the type of milk. My favorite smoothie to order has bananas, strawberries, and blueberries blended with almond milk. A bit of peanut butter makes for a great addition to the smoothie as well.

Smoothies are included in Royal Caribbean’s drink packages, although if you decide to add protein powder to your drink an extra charge will be added.

Specialty coffee drinks

While not technically a mocktail, I always enjoy having frozen or iced coffee whenever I don’t feel like drinking alcohol but still want to sip on a tasty drink. All Royal Caribbean ships have somewhere to order specialty coffees onboard, whether at Cafe Promenade, Park Cafe, Cafe Latte-tudes, Starbucks, or Cafe @ Two 70.

Select drinks will be on the cafe’s menu, from frozen caramel “frappuccinos” to iced hazelnut or vanilla lattes. A variety of flavored syrups are available, though, so it’s possible to customize a drink exactly how you would like. Frozen white chocolate coffee drinks and iced caramel lattes are two of my favorites.

What is your favorite mocktail (or cocktail) to enjoy on a Royal Caribbean cruise? Let us know in the comments!

A look at Royal Caribbean's new fleetwide drink menu

In:
13 Jul 2021

One of the things Royal Caribbean worked on during the 15 month shutdown was revamping its fleetwide beverage menu.

Across Royal Caribbean's ships, the base menu for cocktails, mocktails, and low/no alcohol drinks has been updated.

Rest assured, all of your favorite, typical vacation cocktails are still available, such as piña coladas, daiquiris, and mojitos.  This new menu is an opportunity to bring new drink ideas to guests who might be interested in something different.

This new menu will be available at all bars and lounges which do not have a specialized menu of their own.  

You will be able to find this menu at locations like the Schooner Bar, Viking Crown Lounge, Boleros and more.

The new menu is inspired by some of the signature Caribbean islands Royal Caribbean has traditionally visited, and as a way of honoring these destionations, a popular drink recipe was highlighted from each spot.

Linken D'​Souza, Global Vice President Culinary, Dining & Beverage, talked about the menu change as an opportunity to move the menu offerings forward.

He said his team worked on, "identifying drinks that are really signature drinks to those islands and bringing them onboard the ship."

"We've really leveraged that time to to focus on the program, fine-tune the experience, build these amazing cocktails."

"It's like bringing a port of call to your experience onboard the ship. And maybe you have the cocktail on board and you get off from the island and you say, hey, I got to get one of those here to see how close they are."

Some of the new signature cocktails that Royal Caribbean highlighted include:

  • Goombay Smash (Bahamas)
  • Planter's Punch (Jamaica)
  • Papa Jac (Puerto Rico)
  • The Painkiller (British Virgin Islands)
  • Dark 'n Stormy (Bermuda)
  • Rum Puinch (Barbados)

The new drink menus are available currently on Adventure of the Seas and Freedom of the Seas, and will be on all the cruise ships in the fleet as operattions resume.

What food or drinks you're allowed to bring on a Royal Caribbean cruise

In:
04 Sep 2020

A lot of people want to know what you are allowed to bring on a Royal Caribbean cruise, especially food or drinks.

Royal Caribbean includes a wide variety of complimentary dining options on your cruise, which means there is plenty to eat and drink.  Yet, some guests want to bring their own food for a variety of reasons.

You'll find plenty of drinks and snacks included with your Royal Caribbean cruise fare, but sometimes you want a specific brand or type of snack/beverage. 

Bringing your own snacks and drinks can save money versus purchasing them onboard or on shore.

Inside cabin on Mariner of the Seas

Moreover, it can be quite helpful to have these items in your cabin, especially if you have kids.

The good news is you are allowed to bring some food and drink on your cruise, but there is a limit on how much and what sort you can bring.

Food

Royal Caribbean allows guests to bring non-perishable prepackaged food in limited quantities on their ships. So bringing your kids favorite snacks and treats are allowed.

This includes foods such as cookies, crackers, chips, energy bars, etc. Pre-packed baby food is also allowed.

You do not need to declare that you have food, and it is generally fine to pack your prepackaged food in either your carry-on or your checked luggage.

Bags of chips

Be sure not to bring any perishable food or meat products, as those are prohibited items.

There is no limit on how much food of these foods you can bring, so feel free to bring as much as you deem necessary.

Beverages

Royal Caribbean also allows a limited amount of non-alcoholic beverages with them on embarkation day. Specifically, you can bring up to 12 standard (17 oz.) cans, bottles or cartons per stateroom of your favorite non-alcoholic beverage (soda, bottled water, etc).

In addition, baby food and formula is allowed to be brought onboard.

If you are bringing milk and distilled water brought on for infant, medical, or dietary use, there are no restrictions or limitations related to these items. If you need to bring special beverages, please complete a Special Needs form. Royal Caribbean requests you send this form at least 30 days before your sail date and they will inform you via e-mail of their decision.

What food or drinks you're allowed to bring on a Royal Caribbean cruise | Royal Caribbean Blog

While alcoholic beverages are not allowed to be brought on a Royal Caribbean cruise, there is an exception for up to two 750 ml bottles of wine or champagne per stateroom. There is no cost to enjoy wine in your room, but a corkage feel will be charged if you bring the bottle to a restaurant or bar.

You should pack any beverages you bring onboard in your carry-on luggage. Do not put it in your checked luggage for two reasons:

  • It may break as your luggage is tossed around in transit.
  • Royal Caribbean's X-Ray machine will see a bottle/can and not be able to tell if it is alcohol or not. They will then hold the bag and delay its arrival to your stateroom later.

If you buy alcohol in a port your ship visits, you can bring it onboard, although Royal Caribbean will confiscate it until the last night of the cruise, when it will be returned to you.

Can you bring water on a Royal Caribbean cruise?

The best packing for a cruise list | Royal Caribbean Blog

You are allowed to bring some bottled water on your cruise, but not an unlimited amount.

Royal Caribbean allows its passengers to bring no more than 12 standard (17 oz.) cans, bottles or cartons per stateroom.

Water brought onboard needs to be put in your carry-on luggage, not your checked luggage.

It doesn't matter how many people are in your room, the limit is per stateroom and per sailing.

Can you bring alcohol on a Royal Caribbean cruise?

Bringing wine on your Royal Caribbean cruise | Royal Caribbean Blog

Some alcohol is allowed to be brought onboard a Royal Caribbean cruise, but no beer or hard liquor.

Royal Caribbean will let passengers bring up to two bottles of wine per stateroom.

The wine needs to be in your carry-on luggage to avoid your luggage being held by security for inspection later.

Spotted: Royal Caribbean offers water cans instead of water bottles

In:
22 Jun 2020

Royal Caribbean has offered guests for years the option to pre-book a select amount of water to be delivered to their cabin, and now the cruise line has changed that option from bottled water to canned water.

The cruise line's Cruise Planner site, which allows guests to pre-book select add-ons, lists the Dasani Water package that comes in environmentally-friendly cans that are easy to recycle and made of over 70% recycled aluminum. Aluminum is recycled more easily than plastic.

Guests can choose between a package of 12 or 24 Dasani 16-oz. (475 ml.) cans.

More eco-friendly options trend

Norwegian Cruise Line made headlines in 2019 when it announced the Norwegian Encore would offer no plastic bottles to guests onboard.

Instead, it carried a carton-based water product made by Just Water.

NCL's change was part of a cruise line goal to eliminate single-use plastics across the fleet by 2020.

Royal Caribbean took its first step in 2018 when it announced that beginning in 2019 plastic straws and stirrers would be replaced by Forest Stewardship Council-certified paper straws, wood stirrers and bamboo garnish pickers.

In the company's original announcement to eliminate single-use plastics across its fleet, it aimed to focus on other single-use plastics such as condiment packets, cups, and bags.  The overall plan to be completed in phases by 2020.

How to make Royal Caribbean's Grand Sabor Margarita at home for Cinco de Mayo

In:
05 May 2020

Happy Cinco de Mayo! While we cannot celebrate this festive holiday on a Royal Caribbean ship (or even at a bar near home), the next best thing is making the world famous Sabor margaritas at home!

The Grand Sabor Margarita is one of the premier beverages available at my favorite Royal Caribbean specialty restaurant, Sabor Modern Mexican.

Margaritas are a great drink to enjoy anytime of the year, but on Cinco de Mayo, it is a must-drink option. 

If you were at Sabor, you could choose between a variety of margaritas, like avocado or jalapeño-cucumber. 

Here is how to "plus" your Cinco de Mayo (and Taco Tuesday) festivities at home with the Grand Sabor Margarita recipe!

Grand Sabor Margarita Ingredients

  • 1.5 oz Patron Reposado tequila
  • 1 oz. Cedilla Acai Liqueur
  • 1 oz. Grand Marnier
  • 2 oz. lime juice
  • 1 oz. simple syrup

Suggested music while preparing your Grand Sabor Margarita

  • Tequila Song - The Champs

Grand Sabor Margarita Instructions

  1. Over ice in a cocktail shaker, combine tequila, Cedilla Acai Liqueur, Grand Marnier, lime juice and simple syrup.
  2. Shake well.
  3. Double strain into a prepared glass with fresh ice and garnish.

Recipe: Love Connection frozen drink

In:
02 May 2020

The days seem to be blending together to the point weekdays and weekends may not seem to differ all that much, but May is here, and that means warmer temperatures.  If the mercury is rising, then I have the perfect frozen drink to try.

The Love Connection is a blend of two favorite frozen concoctions in one.  It is one of those drinks that if you saw someone order at a bar on Royal Caribbean, you would probably ask the bartender to make one for you as well.

If you leave out the rum, this is also a fun drink for the kids!

Photo by Brian Robinson

If you are ready to welcome in summer, get your blender out and sip on the Love Connection.

Love Connection Ingredients

Suggested music while preparing your Love Connection

  • The Merrymen - Feeling Hot Hot Hot

Photo by Kris Leppien-Christensen

Love Connection Instructions

  1. Blend 1/2 oz rum with each of the mixes and ice.
  2. Layer each blend into a hurricane glass in the following order:
    1. Strawberry
    2. Pina Colada
    3. Mango
  3. Serve with colorful straw

Recipe: Watermelon Lemonade mocktail for the kids!

In:
11 Apr 2020

Usually I like to share classic Royal Caribbean cruise cocktail recipes that you can make at home, but with the weekend here, perhaps a treat for the kids is in order.

If your kids are anything like mine, they love to get colorful drinks that look as good as they taste, and the watermelon lemonade fits that bill.

So if you need a tasty distraction for the kids, whip up a pitcher of this for them and let them pretend they are on a cruise (virtual Adventure Ocean staff not included).

Watermelon Lemonade Ingredients

  • 1 ounce kiwi syrup
  • 1.5 ounces fresh lemonade
  • 4 ounces fresh watermelon juice
  • Fresh watermelon for garnish

Suggested music while preparing

  • Baby Shark
  • Jimmy Buffett - Grapefruit

Watermelon Lemonade Instructions

  1. In a cocktail glass, add ice cubes
  2. Add kiwi syrup
  3. Add lemonade
  4. Top with fresh watermelon juice
  5. Garnish with a small wedge of fresh watermelon

Recipe: Make the Coco Loco official CocoCay cocktail at home!

In:
04 Apr 2020

With there being no Royal Caribbean cruises for many weeks (if not months), that also means there are no visits to Perfect Day at CocoCay.

If you want to get that private island feel back at home, you might consider putting on your sunglasses, turning up the reggae music and making yourself the official concoction of CocoCay: the Coco Loco.

The Coco Loco is the kind of frozen concoction that is sure to put a smile on just about anyone's face, and ever since I had my very first one, I was hooked.

While at home, it is easy enough to make a batch yourself so that you can feel like you are sitting on Chill Island.

Photo by Lori Barrett

Coco Loco Ingredients

Makes one cocktail

  • 1/2 oz Orange Juice Concentrate
  • 1/2 oz Pineapple Juice Concentrate
  • 1/2 oz Papaya Juice Concentrate
  • 1/2 oz Coconut Cream
  • 3/4 oz Dark Rum (Or make it a virgin Coco Loco without the rum)
  • 3/4 oz Coconut Rum
  • 1/4 oz Grenadine
  • Crushed ice

Suggested music while preparing

  • Kenny Chesney - No Shoes, No Shirt, No Problems

Coco Loco Instructions

  1. Toss all the ingredients into a blender, and blend until smooth.
  2. Pour the potion into a cocktail glass.
  3. Dress it up with a fresh wedge of pineapple.

Recipe: Make your own Lava Flow frozen drinks from Royal Caribbean at home!

In:
02 Apr 2020

I am certain that if you close your eyes and start thinking of memories from past Royal Caribbean cruises, you may think of the Perfect Storm water slides, laughing with family during dinner in the dining room, or perhaps sipping on a frosty cocktail.

Ever since I had my first Lava Flow on a Royal Caribbean ship, I have been hooked!

The lava flow is essentially a pina colada with fruit syrup and mixed with a dark rum. If you ask me, it tastes significantly better when you opt for Kraken Rum (which is included with the Deluxe Beverage Package).

While at home, you can make this drink fairly easily and give yourself a bit of an escape back to the Lime & Coconut!

Lava flow Ingredients

  • 1.5 oz. light rum
  • 1 oz. Kraken rum
  • 2 oz. coconut cream
  • 2 oz. pineapple juice
  • 2 oz. fresh or frozen strawberries
  • 1 banana

Suggested music while preparing

  • Boat Drinks by Jimmy Buffett

Lava flow Instructions

  1. Mix strawberries and rum in blender and blend until well mixed.
  2. Place contents at bottom of a tall glass.
  3. Mix rest of the unused ingredients with crushed ice in a blender until smooth.
  4. Pour mixture into glass. The strawberry and rum mixture will creep up the sides of the glass, giving the drink its name.
  5. Serve with straw.

Spotted: Royal Caribbean steel Tumbler

In:
16 Dec 2019

Royal Caribbean fans can now purchase a stainless steel tumbler that keeps their drinks hot or cold longer, with a Royal Caribbean look to it.

RoyalCaribbeanBlog.com reader Nick Vitani spotted these cups for sale onboard Navigator of the Seas on the Royal Promenade. The cups may or may not be available on other ships in the fleet yet.

The cups cost $44.99 each, unless you have the Deluxe Beverage Package, and then the cups cost $25 each. These cups are not replacements for the complimentary soda cup that comes with a drink package purchase, rather, they are new piece of merchandise to purchase.

If you purchase the cup without a drink package, it does include a complimentary beverage coupon (including alcohol).

Let us know in the comments what you think of this tumbler! Would you want to purchase one for your collection?

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