Alt Text!

Wonder of the Seas Live Blog - Day 7 - Perfect Day at CocoCay

In:
11 Mar 2022

Today is the last day of our cruise, and there was no better place to celebrate the end of Wonder of the Seas’ inaugural sailing than at Perfect Day at CocoCay.

In an attempt to avoid the crowds at the Windjammer before everyone disembarked the ship, I headed to Solarium Bistro for breakfast. Whereas the Windjammer would be packed with guests eager to quickly eat and get off the ship, Solarium Bistro was much more relaxing.

Today’s experience at Perfect Day at CocoCay was going to be quite different than normal. Whereas I usually spend the day at Chill Beach or Oasis Lagoon, today I booked the Swimming Pigs Tour excursion.

Outside of the Coco Beach Club and Thrill Waterpark, I had never done an excursion at CocoCay before. I was curious to experience what extra activities are offered to guests, and the Swimming Pigs tour seemed the most unique.

The excursion met at the far end of Chill Beach next to the jet ski area. Here, we boarded a small boat and sailed to Treasure Island, a small private island located just a few miles from CocoCay.

We arrived at the island to pigs and piglets swimming in the ocean, running around the sand, and, of course, eating.

Animal tourism can be a highly debated topic, so I chatted with one of the directors on the island to learn more about the pigs and organization.

There are around thirty pigs total on Treasure Island. The brown and black spotted pigs are native to the Bahamas and were brought from Cistern Key, a small island located right next to Treasure Island. Other pigs on the island were brought to Treasure Island from further away during the tourism reopening.

The pigs have access to an acre and a half enclosed pig area, and they are free to do what they want on the island. If a pig does not want to come to the beach when visitors are on the island, that’s fine.

Each pig is fed veterinary grade cornmeal in the morning and night, and there are five freshwater drinking areas for the pigs on the island.

Upon arrival to Treasure Island, we were given a brief lesson on how to interact with pigs to ensure safety of all guests and animals. Following that, we made our way to the beach, where we were able to get in the water and swim with pigs.

Usually visitors are not permitted to use their cameras or phones on the beach with the pigs, but the photographer was not present today so everyone was permitted to take their own photos. 

Time on the beach with pigs lasted about 45 minutes, and guests were also able to interact with pigs that walked to the Observation Deck above the beach.

The cost of the Swimming Pigs Tour was around $100. It was certainly an interesting excursion, although I’m not sure it is entirely worth the cost. There are so many exciting activities to do at Perfect Day at CocoCay that booking an excursion is not totally necessary.  Plus, $100 can get you full access to Thrill Waterpark or perhaps even the Coco Beach Club, which lasts all day as opposed to just two hours.

That being said, this can be a nice excursion choice for animal lovers or those who have been to CocoCay several times.

Upon arrival back to Perfect Day at CocoCay, I headed to the swim-up bar at Oasis Lagoon. Wonder of the Seas was docked next to Freedom of the Seas today, where there are apparently nearly a thousand college students onboard for spring break. Because of this, Oasis Lagoon turned into a massive party.

I spent around an hour at Oasis Lagoon, but it got far too loud for me so I decided to walk to the beach instead. I spent some time at the far end of South Beach, where there were fewer crowds and quieter music. The weather today was fantastic, with plenty of sun and a nice breeze.

Lastly, I attended a happy hour at the Coco Beach Club for media guests on Wonder of the Seas. I hadn’t been to the Coco Beach Club in a while, so it was nice to enjoy the facilities and views.

Back onboard, I caught a few glimpses of Royal Caribbean’s construction on Hideaway Beach, the adults-only beach coming to Perfect Day at CocoCay in fall 2023.

We said goodbye to Freedom of the Seas and CocoCay as Wonder of the Seas began the journey home to Ft. Lauderdale.

For dinner tonight we went back to Izumi sushi. The menu at Izumi features not only sushi dishes, but also a variety of bowls and noodles. At our table, we enjoyed plenty of sushi as well as chicken teriyaki and yaki udon.

The evening ended with country music at The Mason Jar followed by acoustic guitar at the pub. It will be sad to say goodbye to Wonder of the Seas tomorrow, but I am already looking forward to my cruise next month on Oasis of the Seas!

Have you seen our full ship tour of Wonder of the Seas? Check it out on the Royal Caribbean Blog YouTube channel:

Stray observations

The DJ music is extremely loud at Oasis Lagoon, and while it is great while at the pool, I wish it was quieter elsewhere on the island! I wanted to escape the noise while relaxing on the beach, but it was difficult to find an area that did not have loud music coming from Oasis Lagoon or a speaker. 

Today was my first time at CocoCay with bigger crowds than what I had experienced during the cruise restart. I was used to having most chairs empty on the island, but it took me a while to find an empty chair at Oasis Lagoon! I ended up having to put my towel down on the ground while I swam. It’s a good idea to get on the island early to ensure chair space at the pool. This was not a problem at the various beaches I went to today.

Wonder of the Seas Live Blog - Day 6 - Nassau

In:
10 Mar 2022

Today was a busy day spent in Nassau on Wonder of the Seas, filled with celebrations, entertainment, and great food.

Photo by @AdamsAway

I started the morning with a workout at the rock climbing wall. If you go to the rock climbing wall (or any other signature activity) right when it opens, you’ll find very few people there, meaning you can try the activity over and over again.

We were sailing into Nassau as my workout ended. Each time I sail into Nassau, I am intrigued by the strip of land on Paradise Island where Royal Caribbean will build the Nassau Beach Club. I think this area will really enhance Nassau as a cruise destination for both guests who are visiting for the first time and those who sail to Nassau frequently.

Today we had a full day of activities planned in the Bahamas. We took part in a tour of a few locations in Nassau to learn more about how Royal Caribbean contributes and works with the Bahamian people and institutions.

Our tour started off with a catamaran ride in Nassau harbor, offering views of all five ships docked in Nassau today.

The first stop was the LJM Maritime Academy. LJM aims to be the leading maritime institution in the Caribbean region, producing seafarers and industry leaders. The academy has a three year Cadet Officers Training program, in which students obtain a Diploma in Nautical Science of Marine Engineering. Following the LJM academy, graduates work on ships around the world.

Royal Caribbean aspires to add more diversity to its bridge crew by training and hiring Bahamian officers and seafarers. They offer select scholarships to students who will work on a Royal Caribbean ship after graduation.

The academy has extensive training facilities for both traditional classroom material and hands-on simulation. One interesting facility was a simulation room of a bridge, in which students can train to sail in over twenty locations around the world, practicing maneuvering in and out of port and working with the equipment. Weather conditions can be modified as well, simulating a real life maritime experience for students.

Following the LJM Maritime Academy, we headed to the Bahamas Feeding Network, a nonprofit organization that distributes thousands of meals per week throughout Nassau. Royal Caribbean is a significant donor to the Bahamas Feeding Network.

In April of 2021, in fact, Royal Caribbean donated over $1.5 million worth of food to the nonprofit, enough for 2 million meals.

Our last stop on the tour was to John Watling’s Distillery. Here, we heard from Cherelle Cartwright, founder of Mamma Sassy’s Gourmet Foods. Cartwright’s pepper marinades were recently selected to be distributed on Royal Caribbean’s ships, following a tasting competition to ensure the best of the best would be sold onboard.

Royal Caribbean aims to include more products from small businesses in its onboard shops, and Mamma Sassy’s products will soon be available to purchase on ships in Royal Caribbean’s fleet.

Following lunch was a colorful performance by Junkanoo dancers. We then continued on a tour of John Watling’s Distillery, where we were able to dip our own bottle of rum in wax.

John Watling’s Distillery is a free activity to do in Nassau, with complimentary tours of the facility available as well. The property is beautiful, historic, and has green space where visitors can relax. A bar is located at John Watling’s, too, so visitors can order a signature cocktail while taking in views of Nassau.

As we arrived back at the port, a celebration was waiting for us. As this is the first time Wonder of the Seas has docked in Nassau, there was plenty of excitement for her arrival. Local vendors were set up on the pier and a Bahamian band played for a few hours.

Plenty of guests from Wonder of the Seas and Freedom of the Seas (docked next to us) were outside enjoying the party, and the band was fantastic!

Back onboard, I headed to Solarium Bistro for dinner. As usual, the Mediterranean-style buffet offerings were delicious, with the hummus, falafel, and breaded zucchini being the highlights.

I then went to the inTENse AquaTheater Showcase and it was undoubtedly intense! While the full show is not yet ready, the first fifteen minutes were performed by the all-female cast. There was so much happening on the stage, from a swinging basket to divers and an aerialist, that I found myself constantly wowed throughout the performance.

Because the full show is not ready, Royal Caribbean brought in two other performers to add to the showcase. First was a highliner whose tricks and skill walking on a slackline sixty feet in the air was truly jaw-dropping.

Next was a performance from Viktor Kee, a Ukrainian juggling extraordinaire. His performance and skill juggling up to five balls at once was absolutely unbelievable. I had never seen anything like it before and, like the rest of the show, I was completely blown away.

If you have a cruise booked on Wonder of the Seas, you definitely cannot miss inTENse.

Have you seen our full ship tour of Wonder of the Seas? Check it out on the Royal Caribbean Blog YouTube channel:

Stray Observations

Sailing on an inaugural cruise is definitely a different experience than a normal cruise, but I’ve enjoyed the increased celebrations throughout the week and excited energy from guests and crew onboard.

Solarium Bistro is an under appreciated dinner option on any Oasis or Quantum Class ship. It’s complimentary and, while served buffet style, offers a more formal atmosphere than the Windjammer.

Wonder of the Seas Live Blog - Day 5 - Sea Day

In:
09 Mar 2022

Today is the fifth day on Wonder of the Seas and our second sea day. While I didn’t have any set plans for the day, I was looking forward to spending time relaxing onboard.

I started my morning at Central Park. This has quickly become one of my favorite areas on Wonder of the Seas for its peaceful atmosphere and open space.

I find I walk through the Royal Promenade much less on Oasis Class ships to get from one side to the other, instead choosing to walk through Central Park.

Lunch today was at Giovanni’s Italian Kitchen. As usual, many carbs were consumed and it was all delicious. I prefer the pizza menu to the pasta here, and the margherita pizza really hit the spot.

After lunch, I took a walk around Wonder of the Seas to explore more of the ship. I was surprised to see the World’s Sexiest Man Competition happening on the pool deck.

Many pool activities that draw crowds were suspended during the cruise restart due to Covid protocols, so it is exciting to see things getting back to normal. The competition was actually a lot more entertaining than I thought it would be, too, with men trying to impress women judges with their “sexy” dance moves.

I actually busted out laughing several times at just how ridiculous the performances were!

Next, I hung out at one of the hidden secrets on Wonder of the Seas, the seating areas on the running track. Like Central Park, this is one of my favorite places onboard to relax away from the crowds and take in dramatic ocean views. There is also a ping pong table and shuffleboard here for guests to enjoy.

Later in the afternoon, I walked to the Sports Deck to take in the sunset. I love the seating in the back of the sports deck, which gives great views of the ship’s wake, and I spent some time here relaxing before dinner.

Since I had to go from the Sports Deck back to my stateroom, I opted for a more thrilling adventure than taking the stairs: the Ultimate Abyss.

The Ultimate Abyss is one of my favorite signature activities onboard, and it’s even more fun than it looks. Needless to say, I got to the Boardwalk a whole lot quicker than if I had taken the elevator.

Dinner tonight brought us to 150 Central Park. I had never tried this specialty restaurant before, so was curious to try it out. 

150 Central Park has a limited menu, which I usually take as a good sign that all dishes have been well thought out and prepared.

I ordered the Roasted Spiced Pumpkin Bisque to start my meal. Rich, sweet, and savory all at once, it far exceeded my expectations.

For the main course, I tried the Cauliflower Steak and Pan-seared Halibut, and the fried cheesecake may be the best dessert I’ve tried on Royal Caribbean thus far.

What I like about 150 Central Park is that the menu consists of dishes I would not usually order. As an example, I would never think to place a roasted cauliflower over a bed of greek yogurt, pumpkin seeds, and thyme, but the flavors all blended together perfectly.

As the restaurant focuses on elevated classic entrees and locally-sourced ingredients, it has some of the highest quality dishes I’ve tried on Royal Caribbean.

I ended the night by listening to live country music at The Mason Jar followed by acoustic guitar at the pub. Tomorrow we will be in Nassau.

Have you seen our full ship tour of Wonder of the Seas? Be sure to check it out on our YouTube channel to learn more about Wonder of the Seas:

Stray Observations

With around 4,200 passengers onboard, this cruise feels more like a “real cruise” compared to the low capacity cruises I have been on since the restart.

While I thought having more passengers onboard would make me enjoy the experience less, I actually like the more lively atmosphere found throughout the ship.

My cabin is close to the elevators which makes getting to and from my stateroom a breeze.

On previous cruises, I always had to walk further from the stairs or elevators to my room, and it could be a pain when I had to quickly grab something. Plus, I do not hear much, if any, noise coming from the elevators and hallway.

Wonder of the Seas Live Blog - Day 4 - San Juan

In:
08 Mar 2022

Today is the fourth day of the inaugural voyage of Wonder of the Seas. I (Jenna) am taking over the live blog from Matt for the rest of the cruise, and I can’t wait to keep discovering both the ship and ports of call throughout the week.

I started my morning by finishing up our FULL ship tour of Wonder of the Seas. Have you seen it yet? Be sure to check it out on our YouTube channel for an in-depth tour and guide to the ship.

Breakfast today was a highly anticipated event: brunch at The Mason Jar. I had enjoyed dinner at The Mason Jar earlier in the sailing, but the brunch menu was something I was definitely looking forward to trying.

Before eating, I attended a cocktail demonstration where we could learn more about the full list of new cocktails available at The Mason Jar.

There is an extensive selection of brand new cocktails available, from the Mississippi Moonlight to the PB&J Old Fashioned and Mint Julep. The menu also includes a few dessert cocktails, such as the All Shook-Up milkshake with peanut butter whiskey and banana cream rum, and ice cream and soda floats. Both alcoholic and nonalcoholic floats are available.

The brunch menu is split into savory and sweet options, and each meal starts with an appetizer of Jalapeño Cornbread and Pimento Cheese and Saltines.

My first thought as our brunch entrees were brought to the table was WOW! I ordered the Red Velvet Pancakes topped with cream cheese icing. Other members of the table ordered Meemaw’s Fried Chicken N’ Waffles and the Sweet-Tooth Cinnamon Roll.

I enjoyed my dinner at The Mason Jar, but as I am partial to loving breakfast food, brunch was certainly a highlight of my cruise so far.

I watched Wonder of the Seas sail into San Juan as I was touring the Suite Neighborhood. We arrived in Puerto Rico at 1PM and the ship was not leaving until 9PM. This was my first time experiencing an evening spent in port, so I was excited to explore the city during both day and night.

After catching up on work, we disembarked the ship around 4PM. As we headed down the pier, a Royal Caribbean Blog reader came up to us and told us we must try the pastries from the baker at the end of the pier. He sells homemade pastries from the back of his car, and the guava and cheese pastry was a great pick-me-up before exploring San Juan.

While I have been to San Juan before, I had never come here on a cruise, and I was pleased to find out how convenient it is as a cruise port. Wonder of the Seas was docked in the heart of Old San Juan, so the whole historic area is easily accessible by foot.

The breezy afternoon weather was perfect for walking around, and we spent some time strolling through the city’s colorful cobblestone streets.

As sunset drew near, we grabbed a drink and walked along the sidewalk heading to El Morro, a historic citadel at the edge of Old San Juan. El Morro is surrounded by spacious greenery, which makes for nice people watching.

We continued our walk along the Paseo de la Princesa, a waterfront boardwalk that borders the historic walls once used to protect the city.

As the sun set, we walked to La Factoría, a local restaurant and bar in Old San Juan. This unassuming venue located on a corner with no signage turned out to be a great choice for dinner and drinks.

The menu focuses more on small bites than big entrees, and we enjoyed fish tacos and almojábanas, a type of cheese bread found throughout Latin America.

It was nice to be able to spend an evening in port as opposed to on the ship. As this isn’t very common on cruise itineraries, I enjoyed having dinner at a local spot and walking through the city’s streets at night.

Back onboard, I went to the AquaTheater for the showcase of inTENse. This is the first AquaTheater show with an all-female cast. While the full show itself is not ready yet (the cast just got onboard a few weeks ago), a showcase is being performed this week with bits and pieces of the show.

As we left San Juan the seas were pretty choppy, so the showcase was shortened to a brief segment. What I saw, though, was spectacular, so I am excited to see the rest of the showcase later this week. Our show reservations were automatically switched to Thursday evening instead when we should encounter better weather.

I called it a night after the AquaTheater performance to get some rest for a full day at sea tomorrow.

Stray Observations

In the Royal Promenade today were some of the set pieces for Anchor Aweigh, a parade coming to the Royal Promenade. While the parade is not yet ready for this week, it looks like it will be an interesting thing to see on future sailings.

There have been surprises waiting in our cabins on every night of this sailing. Tonight was a plate of macarons and other small patisserie. 

Wonder of the Seas Live Blog - Day 2 - Sea Day

In:
07 Mar 2022

Our first full day on Wonder of the Seas is a sea day, and that is the perfect opportunity to explore more of the ship after the first day.

Sea day on Wonder of the Seas

I started off my morning with coffee and breakfast at Park Cafe. I really like Park Cafe for an alternative breakfast spot for how easy and quick it is.

I spent the morning taking it easy after a busy day yesterday, but it was nice to spend some time enjoying the warm Caribbean breeze.

I walked up to the Royal Promenade to walk around and noticed a new change to the Cafe Promenade menu. Starbucks is now served at Cafe Promenade in addition to the free standing kiosk.

Unlike the kiosk, the Starbucks drinks at Cafe Promenade are included with a drink package

For lunch, we booked up a few tables at Giovanni's Italian Kitchen for the Royal Caribbean Blog Insiders who were onboard.

I loved Giovanni's on Odyssey and Freedom, so this seemed like a great spot for a group meal.

We had a group of over 30 friends onboard, and the food did not disappoint. 

After lunch, I headed back to my cabin for a little bit to relax. 

Something Royal Caribbean brought back on this sailing is laser tag.

I walked by and noticed it was open for anyone to hop in. I was wearing flip flops, or I would have tried it out myself!

Later in the afternoon, I took a visit down to Casino Royale. The casino has a different look than other ships, and is quite large as well.

I started out in the Golden Room, which is a high roller area, although right now it's open to all.

Royal Caribbean said the Golden Room is an idea to try out in the western market to see how well it resonates. For now, it's open to all and I appreciated the fact it was non-smoking.

Tonight was formal night, so it was back to the room to get ready.

Dinner brought us to Izumi hibachi, which I absolutely love going to every cruise.

Our chef, Roy, put on a great show and suffice to say, I did not leave hungry.

After dinner, I went to Wonderland bar to try out some of the specialty drinks.

One interesting change about Wonderland is there is more decor outside the restaurant, even extending into the elevator lobby.

I like the Wonderland has a bar you can go to without sitting down for a meal.

Tomorrow will be our first port of call, Labadee.

Stray Observations

In my cabin, there was Mason Jar swag waiting.

Wonder of the Seas Live Blog - Day 1 - Embarkation

In:
05 Mar 2022

The day is finally here to see Wonder of the Seas for the first time!

I drove down to Fort Lauderdale the night before the cruise and stayed for the second time at the Hyatt House Fort Lauderdale Airport - South & Cruise Port. Great hotel with a large kitchenette at a reasonable price very close to the cruise port.

Before I could board Wonder of the Seas, Royal Caribbean invited me to check out Royal Caribbean’s Entertainment Production Studio.

Located in North Miami at the Florida International University campus, this is where Royal Caribbean trains all if its performers, produces all of the costumes for its shows, and preps everything before it reaches a cruise ship.

I was not able to photograph inside the building, but the tour of the facility showed off just how massive an entertainment operation Royal Caribbean has across its ships.

We saw one cast learning the lines for Hairspray on Symphony of the Seas, and another cast ready to join Anthem of the Seas to perform We Will Rock You.

After our walkthrough, it was time to get to Wonder of the Seas!

Boarding was pretty simple and straightforward, and I was able to get onboard without any delay.

Walking onto Wonder of the Seas, it became evident very quickly that while this is the fifth Oasis Class ship, it is anything but a carbon copy of her sisters.

Royal Caribbean has enhanced, revamped, and in some cases, completely replaced certain venues.

While new cruise ships will always have a certain level of glitz that endears them to just about anyone off the bat, I noticed a few impressive changes that really separates the ship from her sisters.

As I mentioned in the preview blog post for this sailing, I was invited by Royal Caribbean to be their guest onboard.  As such, I had a few meetings to attend onboard the first day. Combined with my own desire to "see it all", I ran around the ship a lot on the first day.

I shared photos of my walkthrough of the major new changes and additions, but I wanted to talk about the areas that really stood out to me.

The revamped pool deck changes are fantastic, and I like how they've added stadium seating in the middle. 

I can appreciate the addition of a movie screen too, although it can sometimes get a little loud (to be fair, the holds true on other ships).

Thanks to some friends, I was able to walk through the new Suite Neighborhood and you can tell quickly this has been rethought completely.

Walking through the hallways of the Suite Neighborhood, it just feels like different.  If I was a suite guest, I could appreciate the sense that you're somewhere special.

And then there's the Suite Sundeck, which is sprawling and offers the right blend of shade and sun.  Compared to other suite decks that are usually all in the sun, there's a good amount of shade and seating that I think make this a home run.

The Wonder Playscape looks to be a fun area for kids, but I'll need to reserve judgement until my kids show up next week.

Speaking of kids, the best news as a parent is Adventure Ocean is back to "normal" in the sense of not limiting reservations.

I spoke with the staff, who told me the 6-12 year old group can handle around 120 kids and assuming they don't reach that number, can take as many kids as they can.  

The reason why they aren't doing limited capacity in Adventure Ocean is because Royal Caribbean joined the CDC's "highly vaccinated" program, which requires at least 95% of passengers be vaccinated.

One other area that really got revamped is the Windjammer. This is the largest Windjammer in the fleet, and it is indeed massive.

Wrapping around the entire back deck, the Windjammer offers a ton of seating and an equal amount of food stations. Plus, I love the aesthetics of the space.

For dinner, I went to the new Mason Jar restaurant.

I wasn't sure what to expect, but the food and drink at Mason Jar blew me away. Between the charred watermelon salad, Nashville hot chicken, chicken pot pie, and fried Oreos, I just couldn't get enough.

The specialty cocktails are also really good, especially the PB&J Old Fashioned. 

But I'd be remiss if I didn't mention the country band at the Mason Jar, which perform at night and add a new dimension to the dining experience.

If you're at the bar, you get a full country band experience to sing and drink to, with some even dancing.  But if you're eating dinner, you're sufficiently far enough away to hear the music but not interrupt the dining experience.

I'm going back for brunch in a few days to sample that, and I suspect I'll be at the bar just for the music too.

It was a full first day onboard Wonder of the Seas, and I wrapped up my evening with some drinks at the pub on the Royal Promenade before calling it a night.

Tomorrow is a sea day.

Stray observations

There are 4200 passengers onboard this sailing.

I noticed the cabin attendant carts have a new look to them.

There are evidently 4 of these astronauts around the ship. So far, I've found two of them.

My shower (standard balcony room) has two shower heads, although I couldn't figure out how to make the top showerhead work.

Some inaugural cruise swag!

Near the bed is a functional lamp with USB plugs. I love this small addition!

Wonder of the Seas Live Blog - Cruise Preview

In:
28 Feb 2022

Royal Caribbean's newest cruise ship is ready to begin sailing, and I'll be onboard for her first two sailings to share with what it's like to experience this amazing ship.

Wonder of the Seas will sail from Fort Lauderdale later this week, marking the beginning of her career with Royal Caribbean. Each of the two first two sailings are 7-night cruises, with the first going to the Eastern Caribbean and the second to the Western Caribbean.

New cruise ships are always exciting, because it offers the latest and greatest Royal Caribbean has to offer.  Plus, the first sailing tends to be more of a celebration that has graduation, new baby, and homecoming vibes mixed together.

My cruise begins later this week, but here's a cruise preview to share with you what to expect on the trip!

The cruise

Wonder of the Seas night lit up

Wonder of the Seas begins cruising with a 7-night sailing on March 4 to Labadee, San Juan, Nassau & Perfect Day at CocoCay.

Being the inaugural sailing, I booked this cruise so that I could be onboard the first chance I could get to explore and show all of you what's new, different and the same.

In the interest of full disclosure, I had originally booked this cruise on my own, but Royal Caribbean later invited a number of media to come aboard as a guest of the cruise line. It's an honor to be invited to not only sail, but meet and speak to the many people that worked on making Wonder of the Seas a reality.

Wonder of the Seas arrival Cococay

As of the writing of this post, I'm not certain which cabin type I have, but every media sailing I've ever been on has been a balcony room. More details later as to what additional opportunities I'll have to share stories and insight from Wonder.

I'll be cruising without my family on the March 4th sailing, although RoyalCaribbeanBlog writer and YouTube Editor Jenna will be onboard as well. We'll be tag teaming this new ship to bring you as much coverage of what is happening onboard as possible.

For the second sailing, my family will be joining me as it coincides with my kids' spring break.

5 giant suites you can book on a Royal Caribbean cruise ship | Royal Caribbean Blog

We booked the 2 bedroom AquaTheater suite to accomplish two goals on this sailing: explore the new Suite Neighborhood on Wonder of the Seas, and penance to my wife for me going on a cruise by myself for a week while she stayed home with the kids. 

On the second sailing, it will be another 7-night cruise that visits Cozumel, Costa Maya, and Roatan.

Wonder of the Seas pool deck aerial

In the case of both sailings, this will be my first opportunity to cruise with the relaxed Covid-19 protocols, including optional mask wearing, no vaccine wristbands, and more.

Having cruised without masks back in early summer 2021, it will be nice to get back to a more open cruise experience.

Three things I am excited to try

3. Mason Jar

Anytime Royal Caribbean launches a new restaurant concept, I want to try it.

I remember when Royal Caribbean announced Oasis of the Seas would have a BBQ restaurant and I was not that excited because I don't each that much BBQ.  

Then I tried it.

Royal Caribbean will offer southern food restaurant on Wonder of the Seas | Royal Caribbean Blog

On Wonder of the Seas, a new southern American comfort food restaurant is available.

Looking at the menu, there's fried green tomatoes, po'boys, brisket, fried chicken and more. I can't wait to eat here a few times to sample as much of the menu as I can.

2. Take my kids to the Wonder Playscape

As a parent, I get a lot of satisfaction in taking my kids to places that they can't get enough of, and I think the new Wonder Playscape will be one of those places.

Royal Caribbean says this area will be an open-air kids’ play area that has slides, climbing walls, games, puzzles, and an interactive mural activated by touch.

I hope the kids enjoy the experience and it becomes a fun sea day activity for them that they want to do a few times.

1. Explore the suite Neighborhood

While I don't consider myself a "suite guy", I do appreciate how nice it is to stay in a suite when the chance presents itself.

Royal Caribbean has dedicated the most amenities yet to suite guests on Wonder of the Seas, and I'm excited to see how that differs from the suite experience on other ships I've sailed.

What's next

Wonder of the Seas aerial

Our Wonder of the Seas cruise begins on Friday, March 4th, and I will be sharing the details on the blog, as well as across my social media channels.  Be sure to follow me on Facebook & YouTube for live updates throughout the day.

I invite you to share in this experience with me, by posting in the comments for any blog post questions and comments you may have.  I try to make these live blogs as interactive as I can, so I want everyone to feel welcome to share their thoughts.

Thanks for reading all of this and welcome aboard our next fun live blog experience!

Subscribe to Wonder of the Seas Live Blog