Cruising Alaska on a Megaship - Ovation of the Seas - Activities and Entertainment
An Alaskan Cruise on Royal Caribbean's Ovation of the Seas was definitely a different experience than my past Alaskan cruise on Holland America. Some fun facts about the Ovation of the Seas: She is is 168,666 GRT, 136 ft wide, 1,138 ft long and cruising speed is 22 knots. Holds a whopping 4,180 guests assuming they do not sell any triples or quads, filling every berth leads to a total of 4,905 passengers, plus 1500 crew. this is more than double the amount of passengers the average ship in Alaska holds.
I have been on Royal Caribbean megaships prior, such as the Ovation of the Seas and Allure of the Seas,. This is the first one to feel crowded. Everywhere you went, there were people. If Trivia is your thing, arrive an hour early to just get a seat, want to play ping pong ? Good luck people were playing for an hour, how about trapeze? Arrive an hour early to sign up.
The North Star:
This is a neat idea that kind of falls flat. They have an extended version that takes you up and over the water while in ENDICOTT ARM & DAWES GLACIER, which is $50 a person. We did the extended version and while it was interesting, it definitely wasn't worth $50.
Tip: If you want to do the extended version make sure to sign up for when you are actually at the glacier. They sell times that are before and after the glacier portion also.
Ripcord by ifly
Put your adventure in motion with a skydiving session at RipCord® by iFLY®. Engineered with state-of-the-art mechanics, this groundbreaking simulator lets you experience what it’s like to float on air without ever leaving the deck. Just suit up and let the wind carry you away inside a transparent chamber.
Watching people to experience ripcord was a hoot and a half. My nephew (in the video above) was the only one in the family that did it. If you ever wonder how flexible kids are just watch their legs and arms being blown up as the try sky diving on the back of a ship. The down side to this activity is there is weight limits 230lbs if under 6 foot and 250 lbs if over six foot.
Tip: Sign up as soon as it's available Day 1, if you hope to experience. Otherwise, you have to continually check the Royal IQ app for cancellations. The biggest issue was that people were allowed to book multiple times instead of giving every one at least one experience.
The bionic bar is pretty cool to watch. It is not the fastest way to get a drink but it is the most fun way. It does do non-alcoholic drinks also, my nephew loved ordering items from here. You order on a tablet and once your drink is ready you tap your room key at the bar and it delivers it to you.
The bumper cars are a nice touch. Located in the Seaplex they are utilized often enough that there wasn't a made rush to do them right away. Some activities they only offer once like trapeze. Bumper cars were offered almost everyday.
I'm going to give the casino a big ole5 star rating. It is your standard cruise casino but I came out $150 ahead in this one. So it gets my seal of approval. All the casino staff were very nice and accommodating.
This was the only show that required reservations on our cruise, so I was expecting a lot. I was hoping it would be the same caliber show as their Broadway shows on their other ships. I was let down big time. The technology behind the screens is pretty awesome (you can actually go to a lecture on how it all works) but that is where is all ended. The performers were good and they picked songs that should have pumped everyone up, but it was lacking something. The audience was silent as can be and we saw numerous people leaving half way through. Am I glad I saw it? yes, since it was different than other shows have I have seen. Would I watch it again? Probably not.
Live. Love. Legs.
Live. Love. Legs. is the standard cruise entertainment. It was fun energetic and entertaining. It was not quite on par with their versions of Mamma Mia, Grease or Cats but it was a good Vegas style show.
The live bands were pretty good on our sailing. The highlight was the Bon Jovi tribute band. They knew how to rock out. The music hall pictured below also hosted music trivia, laughing yoga and pool tables.
Outdoor Movie Nights
Outdoor movies are almost always fun. There is only one major flaw with outdoor movies in Alaska. It doesn't get dark until 11 PM. For some movies that isn't a huge deal, but if the movie has a lot of dark scenes you can't see anything. Even still its fun to sit out under a blanket watching a movie.