I’ve always heard cruises are like moving hotels with dashing room service, phenomenal entertainment services, and food service like no other place on the planet. And plus, it’s moving. See, I’m the type of gyal who’d rather see it than believe it, so when people boasted about the nomadic hotels they’ve been on, I’d listen with awe but somewhat wonder when I’ll step foot on a cruise and watch it sail across toward a vast sea. The time passed by sooner than I expected because 11 years later, here I was – on a cruise ship for the first time! I was bursting with excitement when I first stepped foot on Royal Caribbean’s Symphony of the Seas, the largest cruise ship…ever! To think I’d be sipping a glass of champagne on the biggest ship in the world? Let me tell y’all about it and convince you to hop on a cruise ship once you get that paycheck:
Day 1: Miami
Did I mention I’ve never been to Miami? Yes, I’ve never stepped foot in Miami! While traveling from the airport to the Royal Caribbean Fort, I was able to get a little quick glimpse of the city. Since I currently live in New York, it was nice to finally feel warm weather on my dehydrated melanin skin – what a great way to start off a 2-day cruise adventure.
After going through a tedious security check at the Royal Caribbean Terminal (yes, turns out TSA ain’t only at the airport), I entered into the massive entrance of Symphony of the Seas ship and my goodness – I was so excited that I stayed on the main deck just staring at each station on the main floor. I felt like I was in a deluxe mall. I thought the ship was just huge on the outside – it was humongous inside! At that moment, I thought to myself, “Oh I gotta make the best outta these 2 days…”
While standing shooketh for 15 minutes seemed like a valid idea, it was time to find my room on Deck 6. I ended up getting lost on the way there, even though I asked the staff directions to my room 5 times (seriously, this ship is huge). Remember that part when I said cruises are like moving hotels? I finally found my room, retrieved my hotel card and entered my room. The moment I opened the door I immediately dropped all my bags at the corridor and let out an animated shriek. A legit hotel room on a cruise – what an iconic moment.
Since I only had 2 days to enjoy the endless entertainment options on board, I decided to use that precious time to explore the ship, take pictures, and enjoy each deck on the ship.
Below are the top activities I got to experience first hand on the ship:
- Visiting Symphony of the Seas Boardwalk
- Walk through Central Park
- Sliding down The Perfect Storm, a trio of waterslides
- Plunge down the Ultimate Abyss, the tallest slide on the ship
- Enjoying a drink on the elevating Rising Tide Bar
- Watching robots serve cocktails at Bionic Bar
- Exploring the abstract art sculptures scattered around the ship
- Play glow in the dark Laser Tag
P.S: I didn’t even get to do HALF of the things offered on the boat, it was so huge!
After exploring the ship for the first half of the day, I thought my night was over when I was relaxing by the pool area, watching fireworks, and encountering new people. Boy, I was wrong! We ended up watching a HILARIOUS comedy show followed by a spontaneous visit to the Casino, located on the bottom floor. I don’t gamble, but betting on who was gonna get the most money out of our group was an experience.
Day 1 was long but worth every second. In case you’re wondering, I went to bed at 4 am and realized for the first time that the cruise was actually moving.
Day 2: Nassau, Bahamas
*bzzz, bzzz, bzzz*
My alarm goes off and I jerk up dumbfounded. I lean over to stop my alarm and saw the time: 9:03 am. I steadily dawdle over to my quaint balcony and pull back the curtains. All I see is a strip of palm trees leading towards a small city and a vast blue sea that seemed rather endless. I woke up in the Bahamas. Not gonna lie, I was confused about where I was for a slight second lol.
I haven’t been in the Caribbean since 2013, so of course, I had to get off the ship to explore Nassau, Bahamas. No ifs, ands, or buts, I made my decision the moment I peeked my head through my balcony curtain. When’s the next time I’ll be in the Bahamas? I don’t know – so might as well take advantage, right?
The Bahamas channeled in my inner Caribbean roots – oh the warmth! The sun! The colors! The vibe! The people! I felt instantly in my natural habitat. Nassau, the capital city of the Bahamas, is the 11th largest island on New Providence, where locals are familiar with tourists visiting the capital city due to the fluctuating cruise ship traffic in the area.
After walking through the city shops, passing through persistent locals selling tours excursions, and repeatedly asking locals for directions, we finally arrived in Junkanoo Beach. It ended up being a quicker walker that we expected, which was great since we wanted to spend as much time soakin’ up the sun!
Welp, day 2 was definitely an experience because not only did I get to finally splash around in the water after shivering in NYC weather for 2 months (East Coast weather is absolutely tragic), I fell asleep and only tanned my legs!! I slept like a baby but darn, only my legs?! How awkward lol.
If you ever end up on a cruise, don’t be afraid to venture off the ship and explore the local area – you’ll be surprised with what you might encounter. And if you’re feeling exhausted like I was, take a quick nap and hopefully get the tan of your dreams…not just on your legs.
Symphony of the Seas was such an enchanting 2-day experience. I ate swell, visited a snippet of the Bahamas in one day, and twerked on each deck of the cruise ship because I’m that b!*tch.
You may think that 2 days is a short amount of time to explore the world’s largest cruise ship but you’d be surprised with how long you can make those 48 hours stretch. And there’s also the option of not sleeping to get the most out of it – I do that. Sleep deprivation > experience deprivation any day hunty.
I slept like a baby but darn, only my legs?! How awkward.
As Bahamian locals would say, “T’anks” Royal Caribbean!