Saturday, December 29, 2012

Packing List- Beach/Pool

Here is a list of what I packed as we headed to the Oasis pool, or if we had a beach excursion at one of the ports. Obviously, everything listed below may not be necessary, but I feel it is a pretty complete list that you can tailor to your vacation. (Here is a post I did with our packing list for the cruise.)


Packing List- Beach/Pool
  • Beach blanket- This came highly recommended to us, and I loved it. Towels are great for the beach since it's an item you're already carrying/bringing with you, but I hate how sand just adheres to it and no matter how hard you shake it, there is always sand remaining on the towels. This is 100% nylon so sand shakes off easily, it is lightweight and compact (folds into its own attached carrying bag), 7'x7' (enough arm room for the 2 of us), it stays cool to the touch and dries quickly. Also, each corner has a "pocket" where you can put sand into it and acts as a "weight" so the blanket stays put
  • Waterproof digital camera case- I pondered between getting this and an actual Canon P&S camera case, but this was highly rated on Amazon and only $20 so I decided to go for it. The instructions that came with it aren't good but it was self-explanatory to use. I felt it had several secure waterproof features, and so glad we had it. We used it on the beaches and at the pool and hot tubs on the ship. Our camera was perfectly dry (even submersed under water for periods of time), and we thought it worked great. Another option is an iPhone waterproof case for $10.
  • Large brim hat- I was pleasantly surprised that this fit my head, as most hats are too large. Provided great shade for my face, and I loved that it was collapsible yet maintained great shape when unfolded. Perfect for traveling
  • Plastic bags for wet and/or sandy clothes- We can stuff our (sandy) towels back into our backpack, but I hate putting sandy items (clothes, etc) b/c no matter how hard you shake off sand, it is still there. These bags are big enough to hold clothes, flip flops, etc. and has its own handle for easier carrying. Plastic grocery/store bags are convenient, but they are thin and can break, rip a hole, etc. and these Ziploc bags are durable. I purchased them at Target/Walmart. I also just purchased this at Amazon.
  • Beach towels- Supplied to you by the cruise
  • Eyeglass wet wipes- Individually wrapped glass cleaners; an absolutely must to get the greasy marks from lotions
  • Empty spray bottle- I fill it with ice before going to the beach/pool, then add water once I get there. The water stays cool and you can spritz yourself with cool water while laying out in the sun
  • Extra rags/towels- We used this to wipe off any sand/residue that got on our electronics and clothes
  • Backpack- We used our North Face backpack which worked out great. It's small enough to carry around, yet large enough to carry everything we need (including having extra room to buy souvenirs). Backpacks are more comfortable, especially since most of our port days include going to the beach, shopping, and walking around. This backpack has 3 compartments and lots of pockets for organization
  • Paperback book and/or magazine- My iPad stopped charging mid-vacation and I was so sad to not have a book to read at the pool/beach. Definitely need to purchase a paperback or rent from the library next time. (Besides, iPads aren't great in sunlight, so I wouldn't have been able to use it at the beach/pool anyways)
  • Sunglasses, case
  • Necessary toiletries- Tissue paper, Immodium AD, Zantac/Tums, eyeglass cleaner, Shout Wipe, lip balm, gum, eye drops/contact lens, extra hair rubberband, Advil
    • Olay face wipes- Great for freshening up after the beach, sweating or long day at the port
    • SPF (lots of it)- We used 2 new bottles (and almost ran out for our 8-day cruise)- this one for our bodies (purchased in bulk at Costco), this one for our faces though I thought it was a little greasy
  • Change of clothes (underwear, bra)- When we were out on port days, I always wore my bikini under my clothes. However, just in case you went to the beach (and got wet) first and then went sightseeing and shopping, I would bring a pair of underwear and a bra to change into (nothing worse than wearing a wet swimsuit all day)
  • Essential documents (cash, credit card, Seapass cards, Passports, travel insurance card, cell phone)- Cash for tips, lunch/snacks (some vendors don't accept credit cards), fees to enter beaches; Passports, phone, travel insurance card, and credit card in case the ship leaves without you and you need to fly to the next destination (highly unlikely but better to be prepared, right?)
  • Quick Dry towels- I use this towel for the gym. These are great because they are lightweight, compact, and dry quickly.
  • Undress (portable changing!)

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Packing List- Cruising

Now that we've been back, I now have a better idea of what I need to pack for a cruise. I hope this list helps you out for your next cruise vacation.


Packing List- Cruising

What I carried on
Important documents:
  • Driver's license, credit cards
  • Passport
  • Cash- Tips for luggage porter, cab driver, shore excursion guides, extra tip for wait staff/room attendant, etc.
  • Medical insurance cards, travel insurance card (Note: I put these in my Coach wristlet, including my iPhone and cruise Seapass card)
  • Itineraries- Flight, Excursions, Rental Car, Hotel
Misc:
  • Hand lotion (preferably with SPF) (quart-size bag)
  • SPF lip balm (quart-size bag)
  • Tissues to go, Shout Wipes (bring several)
  • Medicine- Zantac/Tums, Immodium AD, Advil, Bandaids, Blister bandaids, Floss
  • Gum, protein/granola bars, trail mix
  • Scarf (great for layering and I am always cold on planes), Portable blanket
  • iPad, iPhone, Macbook, respective chargers, Wifi dongle, headphones, book/magazine
  • Cameras (P&S, dSLR)
  • Sunglasses, case
  • iPad, iPhone, chargers (laptop if necessary)
Note: I stuck my purse inside my travel bag
    What I packed
    Toiletries:
    • After Sun lotion- This was essential. We filled this in a travel-size tube and didn't have enough (I had enough for only 2 days). This is so moisturizing, makes your tan last longer, helps sunburnt skin, and is non-greasy. Highly recommend.
    • Travel hair dryer- I hate hotel/room-provided hair dryers since most times they are crappy and weak
    • Flat iron, Curling iron
    • Makeup, eye makeup remover, cotton rounds
    • Contacts, Eyedrops- Needed for snorkeling, formal nights, doing the Flowrider/any water activity
    • Daytime face routine
    • Nighttime face routine (add'l items)
      • Retin-A
      • Night cream
    • Perfume- Buy a travel size/rollerball, or I collect the small trial-size free samples that come with makeup bags
    • Shower cap, Hair clip/claw- I don't wash my hair everyday so a shower cap is a must
    • Essentials
      • Shampoo, conditioner
      • Pumice stone or Pedegg, shave gel, razor, razor blade (extra)
      • Loofah gloves, soap bar
      • Listerine, toothbrush, toothpaste
      • Tweezers
      • Hairspray, bobby pins, travel hair brush, wide tooth comb, hair rubber bands
      • Deodorant
      • Coconut oil/body butter or lotion
    Clothing:
    • Bikini/Swimsuits- I like to pack 3 bikinis. One for a morning swim, one for the afternoon, and one for the following day. This allows enough time to air dry swimsuits between wearing and prevents from putting on a wet swimsuit. Darin brought 3 and he used all 3
    • Pool coverups- I brought 1 long-sleeved short cover up, and some cotton dresses (that could double as casual dresses to wear on at sea days)
    • Pajamas- Even if the weather outdoor is warm, we like to keep our cabin pretty cool. I am glad I packed my long yet lightweight PJ pants (Gap Body), t-shirt, and a hoodie to sleep in. I also like wearing socks at night so brought a pair to sleep in every night. Layering is key for me, no matter if it's a beach vacation
    • Pashmina- Main dining room can get cold, so I'm very glad I brought one to wear every evening
    • Cardigan- Only needed 1 cardigan to wear at casual shows/afternoon. (Opal Theater and MDR were chilly so it was a good idea)
    • Gym clothes (I worked out 6x on my 7-day cruise)
      • Top/t-shirt, sports bra, compression shorts/shorts, running socks, running shoes
      • Eyeglass cord, hair rubberband
      • Headphones, iPhone 
    • Jewelry- Earrings, bracelets, necklaces
    • Shoes- Pack shoes that can go with multiple outfits
      • Michael Kors 'MK' yellow flip flops- I wore these everywhere. The top is soft plastic (perfect to get wet/sandy) and have a comfortable footbed for walking around town. I would recommend bringing a 2nd similar pair should the plastic thong part rub up against my skin (I'd most likely bring my Reef Sandy flip flops)
      • Michael Kors 'York' nude peep-toe heels- Nude pairs well with everything and I wore these every night for dinner in the MDR. Super comfy too, even wore them on my flight
      • Sam Edelman nude/almond Gigi sandals- When I knew I wasn't going to be at the pool or at the beach, I wore these around the ship. Super comfortable, stylish, and versatile
      • Fun, strappy heels (formal night)- I wished I would have brought fun strappy heels for formal nights
    • Dresses- Wore a sundress for every casual/non-formal MDR night. Great for traveling since they're lightweight and pack easily. I also packed some cute cotton dresses as pool coverups/port days
    • Shorts- Bring colorful shorts! Pictures look so good when you have colorful outfits
    • Tops- Again, bring lightweight, colorful, bright, printed tops for great pictures. I prefer strapless, sleeveless, and short-sleeve tops (in that order). If you're going to be out on the ports, get some sun! Never wore my long-sleeved tops, except my (2) Old Navy gauzy lightweight long-sleeved tops
    • Jeans- Wore this on the flight to/from home. Didn't wear once on the ship
    • Linen pants- Love these! I had them in white, and were perfect for the cooler evenings on the ship. (I just put a cardigan over my short-sleeved top for added warmth)
    • Scarf- Great for cold plane ride, and for evenings. Only needed 1
    • Essentials- Bras, underwear, shapewear (if needed)
      • Sunhat: Loved this hat! Wide-brimmed, collapsible, and so cute. Fit my small head too
    Main Dining Room/Opus Dining Room attire
    • Formal Night- Most men had on full suits and ties, while women were decked out in gowns or "I'm going to a nice wedding" attire. 
    • "Casual" MDR nights- There was nothing "casual" about eating in the MDR. Most women wore nice capris and tops, and many had on sundresses and heels. Most men had on khaki pants or dress slacks and collared shirts 
    Misc:
    • Over the door organizer- THE BEST THING we brought on the cruise. We had an interior cabin and the sink space is TINY. The top 2 pockets are larger/wide pockets, and the rest are of "shoe size" compartments. We put everything from our toiletries, makeup, my jewelry, curling iron, flat iron, meds, SPF bottles, chargers (camera, iphone, etc) etc in these pockets. Since the pockets are see through, it kept everything easily visible and organized... and we ended up using every single pocket. Couldn't have gone without it (see this post, scroll half way down, to see how we used it)
    • Monster Power Outlets To Go- We purchased something similar on Amazon, but it had 5 outlets total (which we needed). We loved this since the cord wraps around the mini power strip (hate loose, hanging cords) so it is compact, lightweight, and can easily fit into a nook in our luggage.. Our cabin had 2 outlet areas- one under the desk (easily accessible), and one by the headboard (less accessible). We both brought our iPhones and our iPads, Macbook, and had 2 camera batteries to charge, as well as using the hair dryer and flat iron. Thus, we had quite a few electronics to plug in- maybe not simultaneously, but nonetheless a lot of outlets were used, and we couldn't have done it without this power strip. (See this post, scroll halfway down, to see where the outlet is located)
    • Mesh shower organizer- We bought this, but forgot to pack it. We wished we would have had it! The shower area is tiny, and we only had a small soap tray to hold our items. We always had: loofah gloves, travel shampoo & conditioner, soap bar, face wash, travel shave gel, razor, and a pumice stone. Since it is made of mesh, it is super lightweight and is collapsible in our luggage. Love that it has a separate "loop" to hold my razor as well
    • Travel umbrella- Lightweight, compact, and never know when you may need it
    • Chargers- iPhone, iPad, laptop, camera (P&S, dSLR)
    • Alarm Clock app (iPhone free app)- We LOVED THIS APP! Since we had an interior cabin, we didn't have a window so we never knew what time it was. We had this on our iPhone, and had it displayed during the entire trip. The clock stays on 24/7, and has an alarm as well. We had it plugged in at all times, set it on the desk facing our bed, and knew what time it was at all times. Highly recommend downloading this app prior to travel
    • Pens, Highlighter- Every morning, we went through the Cruise Compass and highlighted/wrote down activities we were interested in
    • Watch- I hate having to have my iPhone with me at all times so I loved having my watch to keep track of time
    • Waterproof camera case- We didn't want to buy an expensive underwater camera case, and this was recommended and highly reviewed on Amazon. Best $20
    • Backpack- We used this to go on excursions and to carry to the pool. Easy on your back, and had enough room to carry any souvenirs that we purchased on the various islands or pool/beach belongings
    What I wished we had brought/purchased:
    • Portable hamper- We used a Royal Caribbean plastic bag to store our dirty laundry in, but it was overpouring from the bag and spilling everywhere on our tiny cabin floor. This hamper would have kept our dirty laundry off the floor, off our couch, and been more contained. I felt like I was picking up dirty laundry daily since we didn't have a place to put them anywhere. This is collapsible and lightweight so it is perfect for traveling. I'd only buy this for cruising/traveling where I have limited space in my room and will be there for consecutive days (enough for laundry to build up)
    • Travel steamer- Irons aren't allowed on cruise ships (fire hazard), so this is something I could have really used. I try to keep in mind to bring non-wrinkle clothing items but it can be a challenge. I love my steamer at home and would have loved to have this to remove wrinkles on D's collared shirts and pants, my dresses, etc. I had read to place the clothes in the bathroom while taking a shower, but we had so many wrinkly clothes, we wouldn't have been able to hang it in the tiny bathroom space
    • Waterproof case for valuables- When we were at the beach, we needed a waterproof pack (to carry watch/iPhone, credit card, cash, potentially passports too). This way, we could both be in the water and enjoy it without worrying about leaving our valuables in our backpacks on the back. With a cross-body strap, this would have been perfect
    • Case for Macbook- Every morning, I liked to upload pictures onto my Macbook, but our beach/pool backpack isn't laptop friendly. I also find myself wanting to carry my Macbook around (even when I'm not on vacation), and wish I could just put it in my bag but don't since it isn't protected. Since this is a neoprene case, it will give it enough cushioning to where I'd feel comfortable putting it into a pool tote/beach bag/larger purse.
    • Evening clutch- I had a small wristlet, but it would've looked much nicer if I had an evening clutch for dinners in the MDR.
    • Extra luggage/duffel bag- We always end up buying things on vacation, and our luggage is already full to begin with. We were 11# overweight, and our extra baggage fee went from $25 to $90. Never again. 
    • Rashguard, Board shorts- Definitely needed both for the Flowrider. You could wear a t-shirt and shorts, but waiting in line got cold in the wet clothes. Rashguard and board shorts would dry quickly.
    • Hanging Jewelry organizer- This will keep each piece of jewelry in its own compartment and you can easily see what you've packed. 
    • Extra duffle bag- I am notorious for shopping and I hate to pay the "overlimit" fee on luggage. Going forward, I will bring an extra lightweight duffle bag. It is collapsible, weighs nothing, and if you buy extra items, it's cheaper to check in a duffle vs. paying overlimit fees
    • Digital Luggage Scale- I tend to pack our suitcases to its limit, and this helps me gauge if I'm within the 50# limit. Super lightweight too
    • Here is a post I wrote on what we packed to the pool or if we had a beach day
    What I brought but didn't use:
    • Notepad- I took all notes/thoughts on my iPhone (which I carried with me everywhere). There is stationery in the stateroom so if I needed to have paper, I used that
    • Pants- I knew going in that the weather was going to be high in the mid-80s and lows in the upper-70s. The only 2 pants I wore were my jeans (flight) and my white linen pants. The rest were dresses and shorts
    • Maxi dresses- I brought 2 and wore none. For me, I wanted max sun exposure and long maxi dresses weren't it. The ONLY day I would consider wearing one would be on embarkation day. It was around 76* in Fort Lauderdale, but chilly in the shade and very windy at Port Everglades
    • Nice tops- Since I only wore dresses in MDR for dinner, I didn't end up wearing any tops
    • Tons of shoes- I brought way too many shoes. Next time, this is all I need:
      • 2 pairs of flip flops (casual)- Need to be able to get wet, comfortable to walk around on port days, and 2 different types (to prevent blisters). (ex: MK flip flops and my Reef Sandy)
      • Nude pumps- Nude goes with everything, and I want to wear the same heels for every MDR casual night. (ex: MK York peep-toe platform pumps)
      • Pair of nice sandals- On days when we're at sea (and not at the pool), I'd like to wear a nicer pair of sandals around the ship. (ex: Sam Edelman Gigi- almond color)
      • Fun, strappy pair for formal nights
    • 5 bottles of SPF- I just needed 2-3 bottles that can do body and face. That's it for 1 week
    This is what my luggage is usually subjected to



      Oasis of the Seas.... Ship review (with pictures) and Tips!

      Oasis of the Seas- Ship Details and Tips
      • 6,000+ passengers- The largest cruise ship to date, but what I had read on numerous reviews held true: I never felt there were that many people on the ship. It is huge, and there are so many activities and things to do that it really disperses the passengers well. The only time I felt a laarge volume of people were after shows when passengers were waiting for the elevators (which we easily bypassed by taking a stroll on the Boardwalk or took the stairs). I could always find a spot of chairs whether by the pools, Solarium, or on other decks.
      • Complimentary vs. Fee dining- Apparently, Royal Caribbean recently revamped their menu, and we were very happy with the food in the Main Dining Room. Overall, we were happy with the complimentary food for all meals, and thus, didn't feel the need to go to any of the "fee" dining venues
      • Pool chairs: We never found it difficult to find a good spot to sit down. There were always available lounge chairs anywhere we went
      • Jogging Track, Vitality Fitness Center- We loved it, and the jogging track was great. It is enclosed yet some of it goes outdoors, and it is breathtaking to run alongside the ocean/water
      • Zip lining and Rock climbing- It requires the same clothing requirements (must be dry, closed shoe/socks) so do these on the same morning. I'd also recommend wearing tight/compression shorts (passengers could easily look up your shorts), and try them earlier in the itinerary to avoid long lines
      • Soda package- It was $45+15% tax for the soda package. We only got 1 package, which was sufficient since we're both not avida soda drinkers
        • Freestyle Coke Machines- There are (2) located in Royal Promenade (Deck 5) and (2) in Windjammer (Deck 16)
        • You could also get soda at any bar and in the MDR
      • Always carry your passports and a credit card on port days- Since we tend to do shore excursions recommended to us on Cruisecritic (aka. not ship-sponsored excursions), if there is ANY chance you could be late back to the ship (traffic, accidents), the ship could potentially leave without you. Having a passport will allow you to leave the port/island and fly where you need to go (next island, home, wherever)
      • Sign your waivers!- We did everything we possibly could online prior to the cruise, and that included signing waivers (to zipline, do the Flowrider, etc.) 
      • Ordering multiple meals- It is very common (and acceptable) to order multiple meals. The meals are more "serving size" proportionate and aren't the huge portions we've been accustomed to at restaurants. As long as you eat most of your meal, it's absolutely normal to order more than 1 entree per person, and a great way to sample all the great cooking 
      • Tipping extra- This is relative to each individual. Since we did My Time Dining, our gratuities were already charged to us prior to the cruise. Did we have to tip extra? No. Did we? Yes. We had different waiters every night until we met Rachelle and John Henry. They were so good, we switched our My Time Dining reservations to make sure we could be seated in their area going forward. We did tip them extra (we personally handed them cash at the end of the trip), and our stateroom attendant (who did a great job of cleaning our room daily)
      • Carry your Seapass card with you everywhere- They scan this for activities (ziplining, Flowrider, etc.), for all showtime reservations, to rent towels, etc.
      • Booking your stateroom- We were located in an interior stateroom portside aft. Most of our time was spent at the front of the ship (Solarium, Fitness Center). Next time, we will be more cognizant of where we will spend the most time, and book a statement in close vicinity
        • Our stateroom was also close to the elevators. I was worried that it would be noisy, but our floor was very quiet (though we sailed in December and we didn't see a ton of families/children either). We loved being so close to the elevator/staircase
      • Booking shows and My Time Dining (MTD) reservations- We booked these in advance of cruising the Oasis. We were able to find sample show times by day on Royal Caribbean's website, and then worked our My Time Dining dinner reservations around show times. 
        • Note: We liked taking full advantage of the afternoons and sunlight, so we preferred to reserve the 8pm-ish show times and then make MTD dinner reservations afterwards
        • Take into account the showtimes when making MTD reservations. For example, if you have a 9pm reserved showtime, you want to get there by 8:30pm; thus, you'd want to make your MTD reservation @ 6:30pm (since RC recommends 2 hours for dinner)
        • Allow 2 hours for dinner (as Royal Caribbean recommends)- even though your reservation may be at 6:30pm, they may not be able to sit you until 6:45pm
        • We were able to book MTD and show reservations about 90-100 days out from the ship sail date. Subscribe to Cruisecritic's board's sail thread- lots of good information posted by cruisers who are sailing with you! Book MTD and shows in advance so you can get the days/times you prefer. There isn't enough time to do everything, so make sure to focus on the shows you want to see first
        • Tip: Do NOT book the "Oasis of Dreams" water show on the first few nights. Numerous reviews (and this was true in our case as well) stated that the waters were too rocky and they had to cancel shows. We booked it on Day 3 or 4, and we were fine
        • Tip #2: Shows open 30-40 minutes before showtime if you have reservations. We got there around 30 minutes before show time, and had great seats every time. Bring a book or iPad to read while you're waiting for your show to watch. They usually had loud music on so it'd be difficult to watch TV show/movie on the iPad but books were popular
      Personal thoughts: We loved this class of ship. We aren't drinkers, so we wanted a ship that offered a lot of activities, especially at night. There were so many activities from sun up to sun down, we couldn't do everything we wanted to do (flash mob dance classes, Michael Jackson & Lady Gaga dance classes, more Dreamworks Meet & Greets, etc). However, each one of the nightly performances were really terrific and I encourage you to see each one of them. 

      Reservations: We did reservations for My Time Dining and each show online prior to the cruise. This really helped us determine what our nightly activities were going to be. We wished we could have seen "Quest" and the "Love & Marriage" show, but that will have to be for the next time. 

      We feel we were really spoiled on this ship, and we hope to cruise on the Allure the next go. Until then, I hope you find this review helpful.

      Ship Layout Terminology

      Front of ship: "forward"
      Back of ship: "aft"
      Left-hand side of ship (if looking forward): "port"
      Right-hand side of ship (if looking forward): "starboard"

      Tip: Helpful to know these terms since the Cruise Compass will say a certain activity is located "starboard side".
      Our favorite Dining locations
      • Breakfast: Solarium (had healthier yet still filling options), Park Cafe (had paninis, breakfast wraps, specialty teas and coffees)
      • Lunch: Solarium, Park Cafe (love the roast beef sandwiches)
      • Snacks: Sorrento's pizza (quick, easy, and the smell of garlic lured me in every.single.time)
      • Dinner: Opus Dining Room (our favorite meal daily)
      Maps
      Maps are located on every floor by the elevators, by each stateroom section, on every deck. You should never get lost because they are everywhere to help you navigate throughout the ship!

      Large, interactive, digital touch-screen maps that tell you what activities are going on right now, how to get to your room, Cruise Cmopass itinerary, how to get to various venues on the ship, and what dining options are available to you at that moment:
      Interactive touchscreen displays
      Room Finder feature
      These maps also tell you which way to go to get to your stateroom. Located at each stateroom section off the stairs/elevator area:
      Every elevator lobby had these
      Easy maps inside every elevator
      These 3D cruise maps were also helpful since you can see where venues are located on the ship at a bird's eye view:
      Elevators
      When you're on a cruise, you honestly forget what day it is. For us, we always asked, "is this a port day or at sea day?". Well, have no fear- your elevator can always tell you what day it is. Just look at the floor:
      These are updated daily on each elevator (and there are many on this ship)

      Deck 4
      Opal Theater: We came here to see the 3D Dreamworks movie, "Hairspray", and Headliner show to name a few. You can enter the Theater via Deck 4 (lower level seating) or Deck 5 (upper level seating). Bring a cardigan (I felt like it was always chilly in here)
      Jazz on 4: Jazz nightclub
      Comedy Live: I think this is where "Quest" and "Love & Marriage" shows were done
      Studio B (ice skating rink): This is where we saw "Frozen in Time" ice skating show
      Blaze Dance Club
      Casino Royale:  There are tons of slot machines, poker tables, craps, etc
      Follow the carpet into the casino
      Deck 5

      Royal Promenade- The view as your enter the Royal Promenade from the elevators

      Champagne Bar: Has cushy seats, tufted highback couches, and lush velvet drapes. Very classy feel
      Champagne Bar
      Rising Tide Bar: A bar that ascends over 3 deck levels where you can sip on champagne, beer, wine, specialty drinks, and soda
      Water show underneath the Rising Tide Bar
      View of the Rising Tide Bar
      Cafe Promenade: 24-hour cafe that serves tea, coffee, mini sandwiches, and treats:
      Globe & Atlas Pub: An English pub, always quite busy (reminds me of Claddagh Irish Pub)
      Globe & Atlas Bar 
      Cupcake Cupboard: You can purchase cupcakes, or even try your hand at cupcake decorating class (fee). Cute, pink, whimsical feeling inside
      Sorrento's Pizzeria: The smell of garlic always lured me here, even if I wasn't hungry. You can also create-your-own pizzas, but we always just picked up a slice or 2 as a snack
      Sorrento's Pizzeria dining area
      Boleros Latin Nightclub: Dancing latin-style at night, but they held art auctions (and other sale events during the day):
      Starbucks Coffee: You need to pay a la carte pricing, but Starbucks was always busy
      On-Air Sports Club: This is where we saw the Karaoke finals
      Freestyle Coke Machines (2): There are 2 here on Deck 5, and 2 machines in the Windjammer on Deck 16
      Deck 6

      Boardwalk: This leads to the outdoor Boardwalk, Rocking Climbing walls, and AquaTheater

      Entrance to the Boardwalk
      View of the Boardwalk from the 14th floor
      From Back to the Front: Each design phase of the carousel animals (each hand carved and hand painted)
      Boardwalk Donut Shop: Free doughnuts, didn't like them at all. You can also get hot drinks here
      Ice Cream Parlour
      Cute stores that sell stuffed animals, clothing, etc.
      Face painter and Balloon animals (both were really impressive)
       Johnny Rockets Diner
      Seafood Shack
      Inside Seafood Shack
      Boardwalk Bar: Offered free corn dogs, pizza, etc
      AquaTheater: This is where we saw Oasis of Dreams, as well as outdoor movies
      Rock Climbing Wall:  There are 2, one on each side of the AquaTheater
      Vitality Fitness Center and Spa: I worked out here and/or jogging deck almost daily. I was really impressed with the equipment
      Jogging Track: Some part of it is enclosed, and some of it is exposed to the sun
      This is the view from the "exposed" jogging track
      Focus Gallery
      On your Seapass card, it will tell you where your photos are located. Ours said "1-77". The first number indicates which photo tower your folder is located in. The second number indicates your folder #.
      Thus, "1-77" meant our folder was located in Tower 1, Folder #77.
      All pictures are printed in your folder, or you can view them digitally at one of the many photo viewing kiosks here.
      Tower 1
      Folder #77- There it is!
      Focus Gallery- Digital kiosks
      Schooner Piano Bar
      Deck 8
      Central Park: Birds are chirping (daytime), crickets chirping (night time). My 2nd favorite place on the ship (favorite is the Solarium on Deck 15)
      Welcome to Central Park
      Lots of lush greenery
      Vintages Tapas Bar 
      Courtyard in the middle with lush, comfortable seating- perfect to enjoy a book
      Park Cafe
      Giovanni's (right across from Park Cafe)
      Trellis Bar
      Rising Tide Bar comes up to Deck 8
      150 Central Park
      Cute NYC-esque street signs
      Deck 15
      Wipeout Cafe: Only open limited hours daily, but it served nachos, pizza, soft serve, corn dogs, etc. I often found people move from the pool, go to the Wipeout Cafe to get some food, and then retreat back to the pool area. Very casual. Just follow the colorful surfboards and plastic couches to get you there
      Back eating area of the Wipeout Cafe
      Putt putt golf course: Complimentary to everyone
      Walk down from the Flowrider/Zipline area, and there is the putt putt course
      Putt putt course (open to everyone)
      Table Tennis (6-8 tables total)
      Flowrider: There are (2) FlowRiders on Deck 15 (one on the port side, the other on the starboard side):
      Zipline: Located in between the 2 Flowriders
      This is where you "take off" from
      The length of the Zipline (you zipline over the Boardwalk)
      This is what you zipline over
      Zipline rules (who ziplines in heels?)
      Basketball/soccer court: Would often see families and/or teams playing here
      Solarium (age 16+): We loved it in here, and spent most of our at sea days in this area. Loved that it was more quiet and more geared towards adults:

      Tons of seating in the Solarium
      There is an upstairs area as well
      Solarium also has a few (small) pools and its own hot tub
      Can you tell we love the Solarium?
      Hot Tubs: Located RIGHT before you enter the Solarium, port side and starboard sides
      Hot tubs (located right before the entrance to the Solarium; on both the port side and starboard side)

      Difficult to tell, but the hot tubs looked like infinity pools; LOVED the view, especially at night when it was dark and all you saw were stars and Caribbean islands in the background

      There are teak benches right outside the hot tub to place your belongings
      H2O Zone: Lots of brightly-colored sea animals with tons of water sprays
      Sprays out water from its snout
      Main Pool

      Arcade Room: It was in an enclosed space by the elevator... never went in there but seemed to be a teen hangout area
      Arcade Room (Deck 15)
      Beach Pool: Looks like waves coming in from the beach (adjacent to the Main Pool)
      Tons of deck chairs (at both the Main Pool and Beach Pool)
      Shh! Hidden area to sunbathe- Deck 15 aft (in between the 2 Flowriders)
      Deck 15 Aft
      Deck 16
      Windjammer Marketplace (buffet)- Casual buffet that serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner. We rarely ate here (as we're not buffet fans), but we did go to it to get to the Freestyle Coke Machines.

      Note: 
      • Via elevator: You can take the elevator right up to Deck 16
      • Via staircase: The staircase only goes up to Deck 15. Then you need to go through the elevator lobby, and then you'll see an additional set of stairs leading to Deck 16/Windjammer