I am well versed with planes. I know the protocol; I know where the life jacket is stored and to handle turbulence. I'm good with planes.
Um. Not exactly.
For some reason I can get my head around a big chunk of metal being able to fly, but have you seen the size of a cruise ship?! Getting that thing to float is physics that I just cannot comprehend, but I forgot about the science once we were on board and instead attempted to process my surroundings.
Royal Caribbean's Navigator of the Seas is essentially a small town on the water. Straight down the middle is a shopping street, flanked by bars and restaurants that would put most high streets to shame. Forgot to pack your sun cream? They've got it. Fancy a freshly baked cookie? Sorted. Want to send a postcard? They'll make that happen for you.
My concern with going on a cruise would be the long periods of time between destinations. If I got too bored I'd get cabin fever and pay far too much attention to the fact that I wouldn't be able to get off, but the five hours Claire, Katy and I had to explore almost wasn't enough. We started with mini golf (where I lost spectacularly) and explored the numerous pools, sun loungers and the surfing machine on the top deck. And the bar, because easy access to a cocktail whilst sunbathing is absolutely essential.
The ship is all about luxury. The gym with giant jacuzzi and treadmills facing out into the ocean; the spa with a hairdressers and massage tables, the cinema, THE LIBRARY. I'd worry that I couldn't escape whoever I was travelling with as I have to have my own space even when abroad, but I wouldn't just escape here, I'd get damn right lost!
But it's not all play. I am very apprehensive about sleeping on a ship. I've only done it once before (from Tasmania to Melbourne) and I drank a hefty amount of red wine to get me through it. But the rooms on Navigator of the Seas are hotel standard, not dorms. The suites are enormous (one even had a grand piano in it!), and they're perfect for families or friends to share.
I think I could get nicely settled on a sun lounger on my own private balcony as I sail towards somewhere new...
I was invited to explore Navigator of the Seas as a guest of Royal Caribbean. All opinions are my own.