After our week in Barbados my husband had booked us onto our first ever cruise. Now I was very pessimistic about the whole thing, preferring to sit by a pool or on a beach all day doing what I want to do, but I admit I was pleasantly surprised. Yes we were near enough the youngest on the ship but we got to see lots of places in a short space of time, met some lovely people, and ate some delicious food. We may have been sailing around the Caribbean but we ate meals from all over the world. We had everything from steaks and sea bass to palm tree hearts and French pastries.
Breakfast each day was a good old buffet in the main dining room with very attentive staff, and a cheerful chef at one end of the room whipping up omelettes and fried eggs. We would then make harbour at whichever island we happened to be visiting that day and then many of us would sail over to visit.
Our ship was sailing the Windward Islands and we made sure to visit each and every one. We stopped at Dominica, St Lucia, Antigua, St Kitts, Îles des Saintes and Martinique. Though each place was unique and beautiful we mainly ate on the ship only sampling ice cream and drinks on the land. We very rarely stopped for lunch on the boat, preferring to walk on the islands and build up our appetites for dinner but on the few occasions we did we enjoyed fresh fish, tacos and even suckling pig with amazing crispy crackling.
Dinner was served every night around 7pm and a young chap would wander about ringing a bell to let us know. People would swarm to go down and we usually took this our our cue to go to the bar. After a few vodka bitter lemons we would make our way to the dining room to be taken to a seat. At the beginning of the week we were sat with strangers and by the end we had a few friends to sit with. The menu every night was enormous and if you had every course you would have about eight plates of food. I generally had the starter or soup, a main and a desert. My husband usually did too but by the end of the week had a taken a liking to the sorbet entremets. These were like a little bowl of of flavoured ice between courses to cleanse the palate. I just didn’t have the room.
There are a few dishes in particular I remember fondly. My favourite was the lobster and steak options we enjoyed at the ‘Captains Dinner’. I’ve had various lobster dishes over the years, much preferring the smaller langoustine if I’m honest, but the lobster here was juicy and well presented. The steak was cooked to perfection and was thoroughly enjoyed whilst watching the waves crash against the portholes. Sea bass on red cabbage, trout with cous cous, curry, lamb and even rigatoni were fed to us over the week as our waistlines slowly expanded. Deserts included things like plum clafoutis and rum cakes.
My husband had his birthday whilst on board and we had arranged a nice surprise for him. The waiters sang to him with guitars and drums whilst he was presented with his own chocolate cake. It was very much appreciated and we all had a good giggle and a bit too much wine. The party continued on the deck afterwards and trust me when I say dancing drunk on a moving boat is treacherous. I am covered in bruises 🤣
Whilst we enjoyed the different islands, the people, and the food, I’m not sure we would go cruising again. Obviously the whole experience was amazing. We swam with sea turtles in Antigua and watched dolphins in the Caribbean Sea. We were well fed and the weather was pretty good. I couldn’t really ask for much else, maybe just a shower that doesn’t move with the waves haha