Wonder of the Seas Trip Log Day 7: 7-Night Western Caribbean Royal Caribbean Cruise – At Sea – March 16, 2024

Trip log, day seven. At Sea.
7-Night Western Caribbean Royal Caribbean Cruise from Port Canaveral, Florida 
March 16, 2024
Cruise Compass – Day 7 | The Social Feed – Day 7
Wonder of the Seas Deck Plan

RCCL Wonder Seas Stateroom TV Map Day 7 At Sea

We are back on east coast time for our final day onboard sailing back to Port Canaveral. Looked at the clock at 6 AM but didn’t open my eyes really until 8:45! Wow, I never sleep this late. I didn’t even hear Emily go to the gym. According to her, she saw gym use decline day after day to a cruise low this morning. 

I ran up to Windjammer to get an Americano then headed out to hang with friends poolside for the morning reading a book. I realized, I didn’t eat a single item from Windjammer this entire cruise. Although, I did get to see Minnie Mouse reinforcing guest hand hygiene with the Royal Caribbean famous Washy Washy line on her ears. By the way, Windjammer was another spot onboard that only charged me 1 punch on the coffee card for a grande Americano.

Up on deck, we were hanging out in loungers with apparent winds around 35 knots. Thankfully, this morning’s coffee was only 1 punch because my cup went flying across the deck almost immediately after I put it down to open up my book.

Emily was headed out around the pool deck area and rode a few of the waterslides and enjoyed some hot tub time. Of note about the waterslides – the lifeguards were telling guests with rash guard shirts on that they should prepare to get stuck in the enclosed slides and if they do so, to just inch their way down. Well, this is exactly what happened to her and the other adult that was riding the slide next to her. The water in the slides are at such a slow flow, that she did indeed have to inch her way down. It was not an issue for her, but I mention it because it would be for someone who might get claustrophobic in an instance like this.

It was tough reading with wind, but I made it through a few chapters until getting to a good stopping point before heading back to the room to get cleaned up for lunch. Mid-March sailing the Florida Straits… Lovely day to go to a nice sit-down lunch because it was cooling down as we made our way north.

For lunch, we pre-reserved a spot at Hooked Seafood that had all the Hampton Social vibes. Hooked serves up a taste of New England-style seafood such as crispy golden Maryland crab cakes, Maine Lobster rolls, and just-shucked oysters from the raw bar. However, today, the raw bar was out of oysters. I have no way of know if this is a regular occurrence at the end of a week long voyage, but If oysters are part of the reason you book a lunch or dinner at Hooked, I’d recommend picking a time earlier in the cruise before provisions run out.

Hooked is an upcharge option with a fixed price $24.99 each for lunch, but we took advantage of a 40% off promo on Black Friday and paid about $45 for the three of us, which included gratuity. I didn’t realize there was separate lunch menu handed to us until I was editing photos and the menu I took a picture of in the waiting area was the dinner menu. Honestly, it seems like most if not all of the lunch is also on the dinner menu with the dinner menu expanded with additional offerings.

Overall, it was well worth the price of entry, even considering there were a limited amount of items I was able to order due to the abundance of shellfish on the menu. Emily and Isabelle loved it and our server ended up serving a total of 4 lobsters tails to the table. The drinks were delicious, the bread was also delicious, and the seafood was cooked perfectly. The desserts were also enjoyable and decadent as well. While an upcharge, it was an excellent value and we would not hesitate to return. Service was also amazing.

It is not just the Disney ships where ducks are thrown on the elevators.

RCCL Wonder Seas Elevator Rubber Ducks

After lunch, we headed down to deck 5 to shop and grab a few slices of pizza for me since I was still a bit hungry. Overall, Sorrentos pizza was not a frequent stop for me during this cruise. It was serviceable pizza, but not nearly good enough to go out of my way to grab a slice. I think I’d rank this third , with the Disney Wish pizza coming in second and the Mardi Gras far and way the best. Just off the medal podium would be the pizza from the rest of the Disney fleet.

Throughout the cruise, there were piles of RCCL shirts and sweatshirts out on the kiosk shops in the promenade with significant discounts. I am fairly certain there were some items purchased by the ladies in my party.

One thing I miss on Disney Cruise Line is the ability to purchase duty free liquor onboard. Not because the prices are cheaper, but because there are often items you cannot find locally. For example, Wonder of the Seas had a few unique offerings such as the Hendrick’s Amazonia Gin which is a limited release airport exclusive offering, a special edition Bombay Sapphire, as well as a ship engraved bottle of Dewar’s Double Agent. We already have our list prepared for our friends sailing the Wonder in June with a few bottles to bring back for us.

We took a walk around the running track on deck 5. This is primarily the walking/jogging track I briefly mentioned on day 1 when we toured the gym.

There are some chairs overlooking the aft to enjoy the view. Elsewhere, there was a seating area and bump outs with shuffleboard and ping pong tables.

As I was walking back to the room, I discovered my GoPro was no longer powering on and there was a bloated battery. Awesome; not exactly sure what caused this, but after contacting customer service, GoPro replaced both the battery and the camera under warranty. Pro tip, keep your receipts for purchases like this.

While I was trying to troubleshoot the camera back in the room, the girls took an afternoon nap. I managed to setup my second GoPro to record a time lapse of sorts of Central Park for the afternoon. It didn’t turn out that great, but here it is.

We stopped at Giovanni’s Wine Bar on our way to dinner for a glass of wine. As we were sitting there, we pondered the meaning of life and by that I mean, cruise ship pizza after seeing pizza on the Giovanni’s menu. If this was not the final, night I would have found a way to circle back to give it a try to see if they could make up for the lackluster pizza from Sorrentos. We have already decided that on our next RCCL cruise to stop in at the wine bar and order an a-la-carte pizza to give it a try.

We set off to our final dinner in the main dining room.

RCCL Wonder Seas MDR Bon Voyage Menu

Overall, service has been 10/10. Vijay is easily in the top 3 of best servers we’ve had over the years. Each night, he kept the dinner service moving and we were out to set out and enjoy the ship in the evenings.

Following dinner, reality began to creep into our minds. So, it was back to the room to pack and watch some of The Players which was available on the ESPN channel in the stateroom!

RCCL Wonder Seas The Players Third Round

We were still watching golf with our luggage 99.9% ready to set out for the night. This is the point when we look looked at each other and unanimously decided to call it a night. We had planned to go to another trivia session and a few other things, but I have this problem on the final night of a cruise — my mind tells me vacation is over when I pack. I much prefer when we are doing express walk off with Disney and we are not under pressure to have our suitcases outside the stateroom by 10 PM.

This decision actual turned out to be a blessing, as we discovered a new channel, Royal Caribbean TV (RCTV). The channel was playing replays of the evening Promenade shows that we did not attend, as well as some of the theatre shows such as Love & Marriage, as well as a sit-down conversation for the morning with Captain Rob. The Captain’s Corner was really interesting, and we learned that we almost skipped Costa Maya due to the wind conditions.

Day 8 – Port Canaveral 

Trip log, day eight. Happy St. Patrick’s Day, now get off the ship. It’s debarkation day at Port Canaveral.
7-Night Western Caribbean Royal Caribbean Cruise from Port Canaveral, Florida 
March 17, 2024

RCCL Wonder Seas Stateroom TV Map Day 8 Port Canaveral Deb

We made it back home, well roughly an hour away from home depending on traffic. We packed up our carry-on bags and headed out after taking in one last view of Central Park from our balcony. I actually loved this stateroom, sure I missed the ocean views, but considering I normally sail in inside staterooms, this was a nice option and the evening music was such a lovely way to end the day.

RCCL Wonder Seas Central Park

We were in no hurry to get home. It was a lazy Sunday. We were assigned to group 20, but in reality we were in no rush as we were sticking around the Space Coast for brunch with my in-laws and friends from Merritt Island. 

RCCL Wonder Seas Depature Times Board

We did vacate our stateroom early to free it up for our stateroom host to turn it over for the oncoming passengers. We settled at a table outside the Promenade Cafe, and used up our remaining coffee punches. 

RCCL Wonder Seas Coffee Tea

The embarkation balloon drop party was all set up with St. Patrick’s Day themed green, white and orange balloons suspended in nets. It has been years since I last saw a balloon on a cruise ship. Previously in the cruise, I did a double take when I saw a guy making ballon animals for a group of kids. I’ve been brainwashed that balloons had been banned from cruise ships and removed from variety acts’ tool chests.

RCCL Wonder Seas St Patricks Day Balloon Drop

Around 8:45AM, I heard from my in-laws that they were approaching the port to pick us up which meant, they’d be at the meeting point in 10-15 minutes tops. They were well past debarkation group 20 so we were able to freely head ashore.

The debarkation process was the fastest I’ve ever experienced with the facial recognition. 

Port Canaveral Cruise Terminal 2 Flounder

We were loading our bags into the car at 8:53AM. The process was so smooth and efficient that we made it to the restaurant in Titusville a good 35 minutes before they even opened.

Final Thoughts

So, what did I/we think about sailing with Royal Caribbean on the Wonder of the Seas? Well, there is a lot to unpack on this. For me, if this was my first non-Disney cruise, I would not be eager to book another non-Disney Cruise. However, I had an amazing time last year sailing the Mardi Gras over spring break, so I am still keeping an open mind. I was not in a good mindset the first day or so. I felt like I was literally on a floating resort with a mall aboard the Wonder of the Seas with very little exposure to the sea. For me, cruising is about the connect to the water, sailing, sitting someplace staring out at the waves as we cruise to our next destination. The Wonder of the Seas did not offer sea views across the ship. Before you say, ‘Hey dude, you could have booked a verandah room to look out over the water,’ that is not the same. I am a frequent inside stateroom booker and other ships offer sea views from plenty of spots that I remain connected to the sea. On the Mardi Gras, we could sit at Emeril’s next to a porthole and look out into the sea. Or walking on deck 8 to get pizza or a sandwich on the Mardi Gras, I could see outside and know I was on a ship on the ocean. On top of the fact that the Wonder of the Seas ignores the outside world, it felt like the main area of the ship was a mall and the only thing that was missing was an Orange Julius and Spencer’s. I am not a fan of this type of cruise ship design where there is a deemphasis on the ocean.

The layout of the ship was easy to figure out as it was somewhat like the Wish Class with the 2 elevator/stair lobby areas on each deck with the bulk of the public areas in between. The concept is growing on me more than I originally expected when I first sailed on the Disney Wish.

I really like the variety of dining options both included and extra. It made for a much more causal experience where we did not feel forced to going to the main dining room each night to get decent food. That being said, you’d think the main dining room food was be lackluster in an attempt to push guests to the up-charge restaurants, but the food in the main dining rooms for the most part was great. We also loved the 5pm early seating. This is the time we eat at home, and we were out of the dining room by about 5:45pm each evening. The food at Perfect Day was also great.

There was so much that we didn’t even see or do on this cruise ship, and frankly that is good. Isabelle lamented that she forgot to climb the rock wall, and we never fit in a round of mini golf, which is certainly not like this golfing family! One other thing we missed out on due to the fact it was fully booked up was the escape room. In seven nights, we had a great time and we made choices to do or not to do activities around the ship, but we were never board or looking for something to do. There was a sense of freedom in that there was so much variety, which I didn’t expect on a cruise ship with anywhere from 5,734 (double occupancy) to 7,084 (max) passengers. I would often call the Wonder of the Seas the Behemoth of the Seas when driving around Port Canaveral, well egg on my face, because the ship holds the passengers well.

Would I sail with Royal Caribbean again? Yes, in fact, we were booked on the Icon of the Seas before this voyage and even booked another cruise while onboard. I hear that the Icon of the Seas has addressed some of my issues with the lack of sea views around the ship, and I hope that I find that to be the case.

Where does the Wonder of the Seas as a cruise ship fit in my opinion as an alternative option available at Port Canaveral for a 7-night Caribbean Cruise? For me, the Wonder of the Seas did not surpass my enjoyment of our experience last spring break on the Mardi Gras, and that was the consensus among all 5 of us in our sailing party, which had two 16y olds. As I mentioned, I was not enjoying my experience the first 48 hours until I forced myself to get over the fact we were on a floating resort and just decided to treat it as such and enjoy my time with family and friends because at the end of the day, that is what is most important.

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6 Replies to “Wonder of the Seas Trip Log Day 7: 7-Night Western Caribbean Royal Caribbean Cruise – At Sea – March 16, 2024”

  1. Liz

    really enjoyed this cruise report – we are sailing on Utopia of the Seas in the fall, and it will be our first non-Disney cruise in at least 20 years. I expect the floating mall experience, but I’m happy to hear that you enjoyed the cruise and the ship so much!

  2. Marsha Hicks

    Thanks for the report, Scott! We’ve considered trying something other than DCL, but want to sail out of Port Canaveral. Enjoyed hearing your experience.

  3. Justin H

    I really enjoyed these reports. The photos are great! We’ll be aboard the Wonder of the Seas next summer cruising this itinerary, so I appreciated all the details you shared.


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