Saturday, February 10, 2018

Princess Cays

I slept so well last night.  A very deep sleep too.  One thing we tried is the Sleep Channel on the tv.  On the Royal there is a channel dedicated to sleep and they have a soundtrack of soothing sounds that is over 10 hours long.  Sort of sounds like you are in a spa and it helps you relax.  It was very calming.  I might look for something like that for home.

Here is Princess' site on the Sleep Experience on board click here.

Since we are now in an inside cabin we are not sure what the weather is like and if we will make it into Princess Cays.  But we do have the bridge cam and when we turn it on we see that it is a lovely day and we know we will make it ashore. 

This is exciting as the last two voyages we could not make it in to Princess Cays or Grand Turk.  This is in fact the first time the Royal has been able to visit Princess Cays this year.

We get our room service – note I have been writing in a bagel with cream cheese and have been getting it but you can not order thru the Princess@sea app as it has nowhere to add information you may want. 

We lather on the sun screen and bathing suits and meet Roy and Sandra in the Atrium.  Symphony Dining Room is the place to get tender tickets.  If you are elite you still go to the dining room and you are put on the next tender.  This worked very well as other times we have been told just to go down to the tender and we have often received dirty looks and comments when others think we are butting in.  

The way the Royal conducted it was very well run and received.

The tender we got on is one from shore and there are two of them and they are huge. And we really liked that we could sit outside.  They were also easy to get in and out of.  

It is so nice to be back in Princess Cays.  As soon as we arrive we are seeing some changes.  It has been two years since we were last here and the island looks great.

We walk along the sidewalk towards the cabanas and grab two lounge chairs that face the water.  There are a lot of lounge chairs throughout and many are in the shade of the numerous palm trees. Note you can see some damage from the hurricane in the foliage.

It is very warm out, sorry don’t know the temperatures but it was HOT and very few clouds. The water was cool when you first went in (which is normal here) but you quickly adapt to the water temperature.

Bernie and I snorkel and there were numerous fish and the water was very clear today.  We especially enjoyed snorkeling between the pier lookout and the stairs where there is a shallow coral bed with lots of activity.  Sorry no pictures as our underwater camera bit the dust last cruise.

At one point I was floating in the water with my ring float and Bernie ordered me a rum punch and the waiter delivered it right to me at the shore line!  I just floated over and picked it up and enjoyed it while I floated.  Now that is service.

There is a lot of activities to do ashore here or do absolutely nothing.  

My recommendation is to bring your own snorkel gear if you can.  Lots of sunscreen and reapply numerous times.  We had 30 SPF and applied it four times during the day and we didn’t burn but we did get quite a bit of color. There were quite a few on board that did get sunburns.  Bring along a hat and sunglasses too.  Some people brought water shoes too as it can be a bit rocky when going in the water. 

We did not have any and we managed but we just enter the water in the sandy spot and then swam over the rocks.  

For lunch we ended up going to the hot dog cart that was right near us.  The guy there was very helpful and eager to make a great dog.  However we noticed that no one else went to the hot dog cart.  I would recommend that they have better signage for people walking by to identify that it is a hot dog cart and also the guy serving could be promoting it a bit better.

We ended up packing up around 2 pm (last tender was 3:15).  There is a new building for queuing up for the tenders that allows a lot of people to take shelter from the sun.  There are ceiling fans and even misting stations to keep people cool.  Here they also had the security screening machines so you don’t have to do it when you get back to the ship.  The whole process was very fluid and I was quite impressed with the changes.

Note because the waters were calm they could load and unload tenders quickly and the ride was quick and easy.  If the seas are rougher and loading and unloading take longer for safety reasons then the queue could be very long. Patience is needed.

When we arrive back at the ship it is easy to get off these large tenders and onto the ship’s platform.  We are pinged back on the ship and the security staff say “welcome back”.   There was a crew member there to collect the dirty towels – he was saying “let us wash your dirty beach towels”.  The staff really make us feel welcomed. 

Our first stop is the coffee bar on deck 5 for a pomegranate cooler drink (that is one punch on the coffee card) and I get some watermelon salad.

Back in the cabin we shower and I started to write the blog but my eyes were having trouble staying open and soon we were both asleep for a necessary nap I guess.

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