2014 Freedom of the Seas Cruise Recap Part #3

Welcome back- feel free to read Part 1 and Part 2 if you missed them.

Day 3 of our cruise on the Royal Caribbean Freedom of the Seas was a sea day, as we were travelling from Cococay to San Juan. I started the day out with a run on the treadmill in the fitness center (6 miles of intervals) and some breakfast in the Windjammer Café buffet, then Clay and I headed to the Cruise Critic Meet and Mingle.

Cruise Critic is an excellent site for learning about cruise ships, departure ports, ports of call, and other fun stuff. The user forums are full of great information, reviews, and answers to your questions.

Royal Caribbean sees the value in the Cruise Critic community, so they host a Meet and Mingle get together for users who are registered on the site (and who sign up prior to arriving onboard). It’s a neat way to get to know others from the forums, and they also give away cool prizes- such as an unlimited soda mug, bottles of champagne, and free minutes in the internet café.

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One of the cruise officers and a member of the cruise director staff hosted the Meet and Mingle and answered our questions. I didn’t take many pictures, but we had fun talking to people from the forums.

After the Meet and Mingle, I went back to the Windjammer Café for a cooking demonstration. Some chefs from the specialty restaurant onboard, Chops, gave cooking tips and let us sample some crab cakes and shrimp risotto. They also told us about a cookbook you can buy and how you could get a free galley tour if you bought the cookbook. We did the Chef’s Table on our last Carnival Cruise, which was fun and we saw the galley there, so we didn’t do it on this one. The cooking demonstration was still really fun, though.

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After the demonstration, I found Puss and Boots for a picture, then went back to the cabin to find Clay and we had lunch in the dining room.

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The dining room serves lunch on sea days, and I liked it a lot better than the buffet. I’m really not a fan of buffet food at all- even on a cruise ship, I guess it’s okay if you get the food as soon as the staff puts it on the serving line, but otherwise, it just wasn’t that great. Plus, the food got cold when I got up to get drinks, silverware, etc. I’d much rather eat in the dining room, and I love the service in there. Clay and I both got the tutti salad bar which is where you pick your salad toppings and they make it for you.

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We also attended the Royal Caribbean Crown and Anchor (past guest) party that afternoon. The cruise director, captain, and some other officers spoke. They also recognized those who’d cruised the most on Royal Caribbean who were on our ship- one couple had cruised for over 800 days on Royal Caribbean.

We are now up to 14 after this cruise, but we still enjoyed some free drinks at the past guest party. The drinks were pretty tasty, and it’s neat that Royal recognizes customer loyalty with a party like this.

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At dinner, it was smart casual night, so I was grateful that I didn’t have to dress up! Hooray for a cute shirt and sweater, and Clay got to wear a polo.

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I had a stuffed shell entrée that was really good and I probably had ice cream for dessert… just because I could have ice cream every. single. night.

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We came back to the room after dinner and rested up since we had a busy day in Puerto Rico the next day.

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14 Responses to 2014 Freedom of the Seas Cruise Recap Part #3

  1. I don’t care for buffets myself but I always enjoyed the cruise buffets. I’m actually craving to go now. I loved the fresh fruit and eggs personally.

    • Amy Lauren says:

      Yup I loved getting a bowl of fresh fruit each morning on the cruise :). They also had a station in the buffet where they would make fresh eggs or an omelet for you, but it was always crowded (I just got them in the dining room at breakfast though).

  2. Your food looked amazing (and that stuffed bear is beyond cute on the bed) We have been looking at cruises (Disney) so I’m sure one day we will eventually be able to go on one.

    • Amy Lauren says:

      Yeah, the stuffed bear is named Marcus. After Marcus Lattimore. I bring him along on vacations and trips, haha.

      We looked at Disney Cruises, since so many of them leave from Port Canaveral, but we decided Royal was the best for our budget and needs. We got to go on a much longer cruise for less money this way. My mother in law has been on Disney and loves it, and I have a couple friends who swear by Disney cruises. You’ll love it if you go!

  3. Sounds like a great day! Cruises are great because so much to do while you’re actually traveling! The cooking demos would have been right up my alley!

  4. I never knew about the cruise critic meet n greets. I have an account there but am not active. I may have to look into it next cruise. I truly think cruising is one of the best vacations! Everything is so convenient. Your pictures are great!

    • Amy Lauren says:

      Thanks girly, I do agree cruising is a great vacation- you never have to worry about driving, getting gas, finding places to eat, etc. It takes a lot of the thought and work out of a vacation and you just relax. I think that’s why we like it so much.

  5. Amy says:

    I love how you “got to” dress casual! On vacation, you should do as you want! But I know its fun to dress up (especially in a summer/sun dress) when everyone else is! Yay for ice cream every night!

    • Amy Lauren says:

      The formal nights on board aren’t mandatory (you can always go eat in the buffet or eat room service where there are obviously no rules), but we like to dress up for the 2 formal nights since we never dress up. Other nights, we wear jeans or nice shorts and a decent looking shirt. I don’t really own a ton of dressy clothes!

  6. harveylisam says:

    Ice cream is the best part of any cruise haha.

  7. allieksmith says:

    One couple cruise for 800 days?! That is AMAZING. I think the Cruise Critic thing sounds really cool! Also, I like eating in the dining room, too! I like the buffets only because they’re fast, otherwise the dining room food is the bomb.com!

    Love the picture of you with Puss in Boots, haha!!

    • Amy Lauren says:

      I liked the buffet for a snack, because I could get it right then, but I didn’t like it for a meal. I like to sit down for my meals (even if most dinners are sitting in front of Family Feud at home)… plus on vacation I like to have a server when I eat, it’s like eating out. And the dining room food just tasted better on this cruise, it is different!

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