While you're bound to explore the inviting ports of call that Oasis of the Seas visits on its seven-night Eastern Caribbean and Western Caribbean cruises, you shouldn’t overlook the ship itself. The eldest sister of Royal Caribbean's Oasis class, Oasis of the Seas still manages to dazzle passengers even after seven years of service.
In fact, seeing it all on Oasis of the Seas, one of the world’s largest cruise ships, is no easy task. That is why making the most of the few precious sea days you have becomes even more crucial for cruise lovers like us. Here are some tips on what you can do during a sea day on Oasis of the Seas with a little planning.
A morning in Central Park
Even though you're on vacation, you'll want to set your alarm clock for a reasonable hour so you don’t miss out on all of the onboard activities that await you.
To start your day off right, take a stroll around the ship. We suggest heading to the walking track located on deck 5. Other friendly cruisers are sure to join you in a walk (or jog) around this partially protected outdoor space. It is a much nicer spot for a workout than the upper decks, where you will spend most of your time dodging lounge chairs and fellow cruisers looking for their morning sun.
Now that you are invigorated for the perfect sea day ahead of you, it's time to head to one of the most serene areas of the ship, Central Park, located on deck 8 midship. This bucolic open-air space offers plenty of relaxation spots and outdoor seating amid live plants, not to mention the Park Café. This quaint café offers a variety of light breakfast fare, including oatmeal, fruit, bagels, smoked salmon and warm breakfast sandwiches. You better fuel up as you have a lot of ground to cover.
If you're like my wife, you won’t be able to leave the park without doing some window shopping. With the only Tiffany & Co. at sea, as well as several boutiques throughout the ship, including Michael Kors and Kate Spade, you could spend a lot of time (and moolah) checking out these designers.
If you time things right, you will probably be ready to catch one of the first carousel rides on the Boardwalk. This family-friendly attraction opens at 10 am and is fun for cruisers of all ages (there's no charge). After a few spins, you could continue the lighthearted fun in the Arcade next door with classic games like Skee-Ball or get your horoscope read by Zoltar (additional costs apply).
If you're bold enough to give it a try, make your way to the Sports Deck on deck 14 aft next. Here, you can zip down the 80-foot zipline or hang 10 on one of the two FlowRider surf simulators. You can also challenge your cruise mates to a friendly game of mini-golf or table tennis, both located just yards away.
Soak up some sun
Beating the crowds to all these activities, you've earned some relaxation time now. After all, you're on vacation! One of the musts on your Oasis sea day is to spend some time lounging around one of the ship's five pools. Our personal favorite is the Beach Pool, midship on the starboard side. Reminiscent of a beach resort, complete with umbrellas, the pitched entrance to the pool makes you feel like you're walking into the ocean.
In the mood for an adults-only retreat? The Solarium, located on the same deck forward, is reserved for those 16 years of age or older. With a pool, several whirlpools, comfy loungers, panoramic ocean views and a bar, you could easily enjoy a few hours of rest and relaxation here.
If seclusion is what you're after, locate the “hidden” sun deck on deck 14. Take the port side stairs all the way forward until you find the entrance. Be prepared for an eye-opening view of the ship from the “wings.” Yes, you might be tempted to re-enact your best “king of the world” pose, so get the camera ready (even if it's not at the bow of the ship). If nothing else, a photo op from this secret area has to be squeezed into your sea day on Oasis of the Seas.
By now, you're probably game for some typical cruise activities, ranging from trivia to game shows to demonstrations, so check the daily Cruise Compass newsletter to find an activity that suits your fancy. We never miss shows like the Belly Flop contest or the daytime diving show Splish Splash, which takes place in the Aqua Theater. These shows tend to be held on one of the last sea days during your cruise.
Drinks & food to ward off the munchies
Sooner or later you're going to get hungry … and thirsty! While everyone is rushing to venues like the Windjammer or the main dining room for lunch, we suggest heading back down to the Boardwalk for some snacks and handcrafted margaritas at Sabor. Drinks are included in the Deluxe Beverage Package, and you can enjoy the homemade chips and guacamole made tableside for only a few bucks. Enjoy the light ocean breeze and people watching in this open-air restaurant while sipping some of the best cocktails on the ship. If you decide just to get some drinks at Sabor, you can’t go wrong with a few dogs from the complimentary Boardwalk Dog House right across the way.
If this late lunch left you wanting a few other libations, you can find a seat at one of the seven outdoor bars on the ship. Or, if you're getting a little sun drenched by now, you can head indoors for a break. You can stroll the Promenade, try your luck at the casino, or catch a 3-D movie.
After sundown, things start to heat up
As the sun sets your sea day becomes a “sea night.” So it's probably a good idea to change for dinner. You don’t have to get too fancy, but most restaurants recommend resort casual wear. The main dining room will serve a traditional three-course meal with either standard dining or a more flexible My Time Dining option. Of course, there are also several specialty dining options if you want something a bit more upscale.
After dinner, take flight on one of our favorite spots on the ship, the Rising Tides Bar. With an exclusive cocktail menu, this floating bar moves up and down three decks. From the Promenade up to Central Park, you can enjoy the views and the beverages in one of the most unique spots on any cruise ship.
Entertainment is located throughout the ship, especially in Entertainment Place, one of the neighborhoods on deck 4. Here, you can watch one of the two production shows in the main theater, including a full-length performance of “Cats.” Or, you can see an ice show in Studio B or catch a comedy show in the Comedy Club. These shows book up quickly, so we recommend making reservations early.
You'll also plenty of live music around the ship: classic rock favorites in the Globe and Atlas pub, Latin music in Boleros and a live band in Dazzles. Whatever you do, don’t go to bed too early or you might miss out on one of the many dance parties, including the '70s Disco Party, the White Party, or the adults-only game show, the Quest. For night owls, your last stop will be Blaze, the only true dance club on the ship. If you want, you can keep the party going until the wee hours of the morning, or until your significant other pulls you off the dance floor.
Can you fit it all in?
Now, don't go overboard and try to fit in everything we've suggested here for your day at sea. Tailor your schedule to do as much or as little as you'd like. However you choose to spend your time, you certainly won’t be bored on this innovative and diverse ship. Make your own cruise memories and have fun while exploring all that Oasis of the Seas has to offer.
What did I miss? Let us know what your favorite sea day activities are on Oasis.