Majesty of the Seas
CruiseClout score: 95.0
Majesty of the Seas: Short fun-in-the-sun getaways
Majesty of the Seas is Royal Caribbean's go-to ship for short, inexpensive dash-and-splash escapes to the Bahamas. The ship underwent an extensive refurbishment in 2016, adding upgrades and new onboard amenities, including free Internet, waterslides, a poolside movie screen, whirlpools, the Dreamworks Experience show, an enhanced casino and three new restaurants.
Departing from Port Canaveral, a short drive from Orlando International Airport, Majesty gives passengers the chance to test out cruising on either a three-day weekend cruise leaving on Friday or a four-day cruise that departs on Monday. While the ship is the oldest and one of the smallest in the fleet, Royal Caribbean fans will find familiar amenities, including a rock climbing wall, Johnny Rockets and Sorrento’s Pizza. When the sun godes down, a lot of guests head to Broadway-style entertainment, gaming at Casino Royale or nine bars and lounges that never feature a cover, including the popular Schooner Bar and Boleros lounge.
Who will like sailing on Majesty of the Seas
Travelers looking for a laid-back, relaxing time will feel right at home on this ship. The cruise director, Ricky Matthews, keeps the dial cranked up to high energy throughout the voyage. Many of the passengers are here primarily for the sun and the drinks. If you don’t care for a party atmosphere, then these short weekend cruises probably aren’t for you. Majesty is also a good escape for first-time cruise passengers or those looking for a shorter itinerary.
Where Majesty of the Seas sails
Home port: Port Canaveral (Orlando)
Destinations: Get away to the powdery sands of the Bahamas on a Majesty of the Seas three- or four-night cruise. Ports of call include Nassau, Freeport, CocoCay and Miami.
Top dining options
With many individuals looking for a more casual weekend getaway, Majesty of the Seas provides a variety of options that require only a shirt, shorts and flip flops even while dining. Windjammer Café on deck 11 serves breakfast, lunch and dinner from about 7 am to 9 pm. A variety of food stations serve up fare such as grilled food, international specialties, salads, sandwiches and other a la carte items. Cruisers can avoid the crowds during the day for lunch and late afternoon snacks at the Compass Deli on deck 12, also home to the signature Royal Kummelweck sandwich as well as other wraps and paninis.
Sorrento’s Pizza, also on deck 12, is open from around noon to late in the evening, serving up freshly made pizzas to satisfy your hunger pains. Café Latte-Tudes on deck 6 is the coffee shop offering complimentary small bites and specialty coffees (for a fee) from 7 am to 11 pm.
For cruisers who like to exchange the bathing suit for resort casual attire, the two main dining rooms — Moonlight on deck 3 and Starlight on deck 4 — are the ship's main dining rooms and serve a sit-down breakfast and dinner. The three-course dinner menu rotates daily, with a selection of entrees featuring cuisine from around the world.
Where we went and what we loved
Our short three-day trip included no sea days and two ports of call. We stayed on the ship at Nassau, the Bahamas, making it our “sea day.” This port is a popular stop on many cruises, so we have been here quite a few times in the past few years. At the second stop, CocoCay, also in the Bahamas, we decided to splurge a bit. We scored a great deal on a beach bungalow by booking during a sale, securing these plush beachfront accommodations on a private part of the island’s South Beach. Along with a catered lunch, the area includes a private bar and transportation to and from the tender pier for those who don’t want to make the trek down to this secluded spot.
Activities on board
With two port days, there is limited time to spend on the ship. The outdoor decks are where the action is during the day, with most people making use of the pools and sports court. You'll find a variety of poolside activities, including the popular Belly Flop contest.
The indoor areas were quiet during the day but came alive at night. That's when the onboard shops and casino are open up for business. Look for live music with a few different acts rotating through the various lounges, including the nautically themed Schooner Bar, which features piano music and classical guitar, and Boleros, which features live dance music, game shows and karaoke.
The small Centrum (atrium) also features live music, the International Parade of Flags, the captain’s speech and rock band karaoke.
The Chorus Line Theater, on deck 6, features a mix of original production shows and headliner acts. While the shows might differ on some cruises, the first night’s show was Boogie Wonderland, a ’70s- and ’80s-inspired act featuring the cruise line’s singers and dancers. On the two remaining evenings, the theater shows feature headliner acts, including a talented comedic juggler and a stand-up comedian. Most shows are family-friendly except for the final night’s adult comedy session, which is for mature audiences only.
Majesty of the Seas also hosts themed parties, including the Dancing Under the Stars pool deck party on night two. On the last night of the cruise, the line’s popular show "The Quest" takes place. This interactive adult game show is worthy of attending even if you don't plan to be an active participant. Other options include the musical acts in the lounges and bars.
For kids & families
For families, the line offers its Adventure Ocean program for children ages 3-11. With dedicated spaces on deck 10, your kids will get to interact with other children of similar ages while they participate in organized activities led by the youth activities staff. Families can also enjoy the sports decks, video arcade and the dedicated pool area for younger children. Teens ages 12-17 also have their own hangout on deck 11. Activities include staff-led events such as scavenger hunts, video game tournaments and parties that are age appropriate. Another family-friendly event is the daily poolside movie shown on the large screen on the pool deck during the afternoon and early evening.
Best bets on shore
Royal Caribbean's private island of CocoCay in the Bahamas offers the ideal beach day. Up until the summer of 2018, ships visiting the island need to tender. So we recommend getting on the first tender out to enjoy as much of the island as possible. Also, while all you need is your Seapass card, we recommend taking some cash for the Straw Market. The vendors there don't accept SeaPass cards. Lunch is provided as a barbecue buffet on the island, but you can always head back to the ship to eat if you want to escape the sun.
You only live once!
Upgrade your stay at CocoCay with one of the reserved beach front offerings. For a fee, the line has an exclusive Cabana Cove, which features a private cabana, access to a VIP lunch and other amenities. Another private area on South Beach has both beach bungalows and beach beds that provide access to a secluded part of the beach, a catered lunch and a private bar.
You might want to consider purchasing the drink package: It not only includes alcoholic beverages but also covers specialty coffees, bottled water and other non-alcoholic specialties like fresh-squeezed orange juice.
Staterooms come in different categories based on size and amenities as well as the location on the cruise ship. All staterooms have closed-circuit TV, a radio, hair dryer, vanity area and a bathroom with a shower. All lower beds are convertible to a queen. There are no balcony rooms on Majesty of the Seas, but there are a limited number of suites which offer a sitting area, private balcony, full bath with a tub and more interior space for those looking for a bit more breathing room.
We stayed in a mid-ship oceanview cabin on deck 8. The stateroom was small, but the layout was adequate to store all of our luggage and belongings. The room décor did leave a little to be desired, but we weren’t in the room long enough to really be concerned. Other finishings including the bathroom could have used a bit of TLC as well.
Tips & gratuities
Gratuities for standard cabins cost $13.50 a day per person, with suites charged $16.50 a person. These tips are distributed among staff on the ship working in the dining and hotel departments, including your stateroom attendant, those working in the complimentary restaurants and bars, and your main dining room staff. For excellent service, as on this voyage, we leave extra tips. In addition, all drinks or specialty dining purchases onboard will also incur an additional 18 percent gratuity. Note that you prepay the gratuity when you purchase the drink package, so you won't have to worry about this cost when getting your beverages at the bar.
During the day, it’s a bathing suit and T-shirt kind of cruise. At night, the dress code in the main dining room is considered resort casual. There is a great range of what is considered acceptable, but our default recommendation is always slacks and a collared shirt for men and a similar combination or sundress for women during dinner. The second night of the cruise is considered Formal Night, but we saw very few people dressed up with the occasional shirt and tie and only a few cruisers really decked out.
Sailing on a three-day Bahamas cruise, the ship was filled with a variety of cruisers, many of whom live within a few hours' drive of the port. A mix of young adults and couples looking to let loose were intertwined with first-time cruisers and other loyal Royal travelers. Our voyage included a good number of seasoned cruisers as showcased by the rather busy Diamond Lounge, an exclusive club for frequent cruisers of Royal Caribbean.
Crew members work extremely hard each day to provide a fun and entertaining cruise. These short cruises are often filled with travelers looking to make the most of the few days they have off. This does mean that things can be a little busy at times, as well as a bit rowdy, but it's all in good fun. On these weekend cruises, you need to be ready to relax and just go with the flow.
Though it's an older and smaller ship, Majesty of the Seas still delivers a solid cruise experience that keeps many cruisers coming back when they need a little R&R.
How about you? Have you sailed on Majesty of the Seas? Any photos you'd like to share? Any tips for first-timers?
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Interested in a cruise on this ship?
Top highlights on this ship
- Broadway-style entertainment in Main Theater
- Gaming in Vegas-style Casino Royale
- Dancing in Boleros, a Latin-themed lounge
- Excellent service & exquisitely prepared meals in the main dining rooms.
- Finding a spot in the sunlight on this ship is easy to do
Top dining options on board
“This fairly smart-looking resort ship provides well-tuned, yet impersonal, short circuits (three- and four-day Bahamas cruises year-round from Miami) for a lot of passengers. The dress code is ultra casual.”