Cruise to Canada & New England

Sept 6 to Sept 15, 2018

(RCCL - Anthem: Cabin 9668 balcony - H/C)


Port of Calls:

bulletDrive to NJ
bulletBayonne, NJ
bulletAt Sea
bulletBoston, MA
bulletPortland, ME
bulletBar Harbor, ME
bulletHalifax, NS
bulletAt Sea
bulletSaint John, NB
bulletAt Sea
bulletBayonne, NJ
bulletFinal Thoughts





Sept 5, 2018 - Our drive to New Jersey

We left home at 7AM, we had a pleasant drive down to Newark, NJ.  The weather started at 19C/66F and finished at 33C/91F.  We arrived at the hotel at 3PM.  We stayed at the Best Western Newark, we had a large room, plenty of space to move around.  They have a restaurant there that serve mostly sandwiches types of food.  It was very good and not expensive.  Breakfast they had a nice breakfast bar with cold and hot choices.  This cruise I am travelling with my brother.  I will be doing solo cruises next.

Sept 6, 2018 - Bayonne, NJ

We left the hotel around 9:30AM, first we needed to get gas then we drove to the port.  We were seated having lunch at 11:15AM.  The security went fast enough but I got my electrical bar confiscated to be picked up at security at the end of the cruise.  They never bothered before this was the first time.  Luckily being a new ship there are plenty of outlets even two USB outlets.

We had lunch at the Windjammers while waiting for our room to be ready.  The announcement came at 1PM that we could go to our rooms.

We had muster drill at 3PM and Sailaway at 4PM.  We chose to sit on our balcony for Sailaway.

We are in The Grande restaurant table 346 which is a round table for 6.  The two other couples are very nice, we had lots of conversations during dinner.

Showtime: Welcome Aboard Show: our Cruise Director is Dennis Charles and he introduced the comedian Steve McGrew which he was very funny.

Sept 7, 2018 - At Sea

Beautifully warm day today, we are on our way to Boston, should arrive at 5AM tomorrow morning.

We had a Cruise Critic meeting at 10AM.  Our Cruise Critic meeting where the CD Dennis entertained us with his knowledge of Royal Caribbean and telling us what we can expect in the coming years.

After the meeting we had a cabin crawl. We saw 4 cabins of different types of balconies to grand loft suite.  We did the poker run that cost $5. each, the winner would get half and the lowest would get the other half.  I won the highest hand and my brother won the lowest hand.  We were both pleasantly surprised. We won $75.00 and $70.00 respectively.

My brother wanted to try the bumper cars, we went the first time before our meeting, the line was not long, there are 12 cars and the ride last 3.5 minute.  He had a ball. We went back after our cabin crawl, the line was must longer but he did a second tour on the bumper cars.

We went to a talk given by our CD Dennis and Activity Manager Hannah on The Royal Caribbean Story part 1 giving us the history how the company was formed.

Showtime: Spectra's Cabaret which is a blend of live performances and experimental cinema along with music from popular culture.  It creates a world seen through the lens of music and technology all while exploring the deepest recesses of the heart.  This show must be reserve on-line.  It is a different show but I liked it.

Sept 8, 2018 - Boston, MA

The weather today will be overcast and 21C/70F.

Today we had a Trolley tour with the ship that did a city tour, our guide was very informative and funny at times.  We got off the bus at Quincy Market, walked around the area before boarding a new Trolley that brought us back to the ship.

After lunch we went to one of the activities called Adult Killer Pool Competition, we were 6 people, we each got a shot and if a ball did not go in you lost a life.  Everyone started with 6 lives.  It was fun, we did not win but had a good time.

Showtime: The Gift which was not the same as 2 years ago.  It is a musical journey of fantasy and illusion that begins one stormy night with the arrival of a "Magical Gift".  We enjoyed the show, very dynamic, good performers.

Sept 9, 2018 - Portland, ME

Beautiful day in Portland with 19C/66F.  With a light jacket it is perfect weather to walk around Portland.

Coming out of the terminal, we found a tour The Senic Route Main Tours just outside the terminal at a cost of $31/pp for 2 hours. We were 4 in the mini bus and Mike was our driver/guide.  He was very knowledgeable and new his history.  We did a tour of Portland and up to the Portland Head Light (the most photograph lighthouse in USA).  We came back a different way to show up more of Portland architecture.  We got off at DiMillo's to have a Clam Chowder cup and walked back to the ship.

Showtime: The Edge Effect - they are a 5 man all-star vocal band taking a cappella vocal music to a new height.  They were runner-up on American Idol in 2009.  Excellent show not to be missed.

Sept 10, 2018 - Bar Harbor, ME

It is cooler today 17C/63F, needed a light jacket but we had a beautiful sunny day.  This is a tender port which makes everything longer to get off and on the ship.  This is our only tender port.

We found our own tour called Acadia, National Park Tours,  the tour cost per adults $32.50 and lasts 90 minutes. We toured all of the Acadia National Park with all the history that went with it.  Leaving Bar Harbor we got history on this area, very interesting.  The population is about 5,000 but during the summer period, it can be 6 times that amount of people.

We watched the Battle of the Sexes very funny to watch.  They give each sex a task to complete and after all the competitions the females won.

Showtime: no shows tonight.

Sept 11, 2018 - Halifax, NS

It is 21C/69F with some drizzles.  We took a walk along the boardwalk, stopped for coffee and came back to the ship. We both have visited Halifax over the years.

Showtime: Las Vegas Comedy Hypnotist Tyzen, funny show as you can expect.

Sept 12, 2018 - At Sea

It is a nice day at sea, windy when on the top decks outside.  My brother went on the bumper cars again, he just loves it.  After we went to see the iFly which looks harder than it looks and watch some surfers also.

Afternoon Showtime: We Will Rock You, you must reserve for this show.  Written by Ben Elton and score by Queen with tunes such as Radio Ga Ga, I Want to Break Free, Bohermian Rhapsody and We Will Rock You.  We both enjoyed the show, I saw it two years ago and to me it felt like the first time.  It is a very up-beat show.

Sept 13, 2018 - Saint John, NB

It is 23C/73F today no clouds, just a beautiful sunny day.

We took a taxi City Tour right outside the terminal at $50/hr.  We got to see lots of the city which I had not seem before.  Our tour lasted 2.5hrs.  We were pleased with this tour and I am sure we were able to see more than what was being offered on the cruise.

Back on the ship, we had lunch then went to play Trivia (name the movie star and movie they played in).  We did not win but it was fun.

We spent the rest of the afternoon on our balcony, the weather was just perfect for sitting out.

Sept 14, 2018 - At Sea

Beautiful sunny day today.

Our first thing this morning was the Northstar, that is the arm with a bubble that goes up in the air over the ship and water.  It is similar to all the new Ferris wheels that are popping up in lots of cities but with only one cabin.

We did a Trivia called morning Trivia.

We had lunch in the Silk dinning room for a change since it is our last day.

Captain's Corner where the Captain and his senior officers answer questions from the guests.  Always informative.

Escape from the Future - this is a puzzle room where the team must solve all the clues before the end of the hour in order to be let out.  We did it with 19 minutes to spare.  It was difficult but fun.

Showtine: Farewell Show Starring the Anthem of the Seas Orchestra and Comedian Don Gavin.  Also performing was our CD Dennis Charles and the head singer also sang a song.  It was a good show, sad that it was our last night on the ship.

Sept 15, 2018 - Bayonne, NJ

it was a beautiful day for driving home.  We had number 4 to get our luggage so we were off the ship, got a porter, loaded the van, paid the parking and we were sitting in the van by 8AM.  When we got on the road, once we got out on the highway, traffic was light.

Final Thoughts

We enjoyed the cruise.  It was nice to use the Royal IQ which you have, on your Smartphone, the compass, you can add activities and shows to your calendar which makes it easier to organize your day.  One downfall was that not all activities had the capability to add to our calendar.

Dining room, the food was good but our service was a little slower than usual, don't know if the waiter hade too many tables to handle or was he a newbie.

Loved the production shows and the other shows but the downfall was that two nights we did not have are entertainment.

The Anthem is a big ship with almost 5000 guests, but you never felt overcrowded.

Looking forward to my next cruise.

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