A decent itinerary on a beautiful ship with plenty to do. This cruise offered a nice mix of activities and relaxation. As a group, we were able to interact regularly and also do our own thing as desired.
A great variety of activities are offered on the Independence of the Seas. I was pleased that the fitness center was large enough to always have available equipment for use. The pools were often crowded, as were the Solarium hot tubs. We finally got to enjoy them when most of the ship was vacant during the stop in CocoCay.
We saw Grease, Freeze Frame ice show, and the Farewell Show. I appreciate that all the shows were, to some degree, interactive with the audience. The shows were worth attending, but not without flaws.
Service was par overall. We has one server (Maher in the MDR) and a couple bartenders (Maria in Playmakers and Ralph at the Pool Bar) that stood out, but other staff seemed to just go through the motions. Our assistant waiter consistently failed to deliver the correct drinks and necessary accompaniments in a timely manner. The room steward was rarely seen, except for the last day after the tip envelopes had been handed out.
On this trip, we limited our use of specialty restaurants. We did try Fish'n'Ships on the pool deck and Johnny Rockets. Fish'n'Ships offered a generous portion of fresh seafood and fries. Everything was prepared in its own fryer and delicious. It was worth the amount paid. Johnny Rockets was good and food came out fast. However, now at $9.95 per person, I don't feel that there is real value unless one has an incredible appetite. I would much rather see the old $5 cover fee and limitations on what you can order. MDR and Windjammer foods were typical. The latter deserves kudos for Mongolian night with food prepared as desired. Our experience with the waitstaff in My Time Dining was overall excellent, though we had an assistant waiter that failed to meet the mark in getting is beverage service and sides in a timely manner. Drink service in the Windjammer was also subpar.
Spacious, clean, and quiet.
Under construction and overcrowded.
Cozumel is always fun. This time, we took two Jeeps to tour the island. Our guide, Pancho, is excellent in customizing the trip based on the groups' desires. We revisted a theatrical Mayan village, climbed the lighthouse and Punta Sur, and enjoyed lunch at Tortuga's Beach Club before getting back to the ship with plenty of time to spare.View All 166 Jeep Tour Reviews
We had dinner the night before embarking at Pizza Craft Artisan Pizza in Fort Lauderdale. What a great place with a quaint speakeasy type bar attached. I highly recommend making a stop here if you have time before your cruise out of Fort Lauderdale, FL.