Vacationers looking for big adventure on one of the world’s largest cruise ships can now set sail on Royal Caribbean’s Allure of the Seas from her homeport, the new $125-million cruise terminal in Galveston, Texas. This Oasis-class ship offers seven-night Caribbean cruises to Costa Maya and Cozumel in Mexico and Roatan in Honduras. With more than 30 restaurants, bars and lounges, 10 pools and whirlpools, indoor and outdoor theaters, an ice rink, a casino and a spa, this mega-ship has lots of exciting spaces to explore.
How Big Is Allure of the Seas?
Allure of the Seas is 18 decks tall, 1,187 feet long and 215 feet wide. She weighs 225,282 GT, which puts her up there in size with her sister ships in the Oasis class, but she’s not quite as large as Royal Caribbean’s newest ship, Wonder of the Seas. With 2,742 staterooms, the ship can accommodate up to 6,780 guests, in addition to 2,200 international crew members.
Read More: Is a Mega Ship Right for You?
Fill Your Days with Fun at Sea
Whether you want to relax in the sun or go full-tilt with activities, a giant ship’s worth of entertainment awaits. Go zip lining, rock climbing or ice skating. Ride the carousel, boogie board on one of the ship’s two FlowRiders, play a round of mini golf or join a volleyball tournament.
You’ll want to download the Royal Caribbean app before you leave home so you don’t miss a single Latin fitness class or ping-pong contest.
For a slower pace, visit the ship’s library on Deck 11 and borrow a book to read in a cozy corner of Central Park on Deck 8. Surrounded by ferns, vines and tropical foliage, it’s easy to unwind here—especially if you get a Pineapple Guava Sangria from the nearby Trellis Bar.
Hit the Pools
Allure of the Seas has four pools and six whirlpools, but no water slides. Kids can enjoy the family-friendly pools and kid-free adults can retreat to the Solarium, which is for ages 16 and up. If even the adults-only whirlpools are a little too people-y for your liking, escape to Vitality Spa for some downtime.
Read More: 7 Best Cruises for Kids
Don’t Miss a Single Show
Live shows are where Allure of the Seas really shines. “Mamma Mia!,” the musical based on ABBA songs, is an absolute delight and performances by MO5AIC, a talented five-man A Cappella group, get the audience singing along. You’ll also want to catch the breathtaking high-diving acts in the AquaTheater and the ice skating show “Monopoly on Ice.” At night, arrive early for the comedy shows because those seats fill up fast.
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Where To Eat on Allure of the Seas
As soon as you book your cruise, start looking into making dinner reservations for the ship’s specialty restaurants. These cost extra but offer a more intimate dining experience. After a day surrounded by people, you’ll relish a calm meal.
150 Central Park
150 Central Park only has 72 seats so book early to avoid being disappointed. Here, you can enjoy roasted pumpkin bisque, beef tenderloin for two and fried cheesecake for dessert. On select sailings, you can join the Chef’s Table for a five-course prix fixe meal. This elevated experience includes Maine lobster salad and filet mignon paired with complementary wines.
For a Brazilian steakhouse experience, try Samba Grill, where your meal includes eight unique meat courses. You’ll start with cold appetizers like baby mozzarella with cherry tomatoes, basil and chervil. Then you’ll move on to hot appetizers like empanadas, rice balls and fried bananas. After a helping of warm cheese bread, you’ll start to feel full, but the meal has only just begun.
Turn the plastic disk on your table to green and you’ll be served meat after meat to dip in various tasty sauces. From chicken wrapped in bacon to beef ribs, the meats keep coming. Turn the disk to red and you can take a break from meat, and eat your family-style veggies. The grilled zucchini and squash, mashed potatoes and broccolini are too good to skip. And just when you think you might burst, you still have dessert.
If Italian is more your speed, Chef Luigi at Giovanni’s Table in Central Park serves traditional dishes from Italy for lunch and dinner. This is a great place to eat as a family if you’re traveling with kids. The Bambino menu has entrees including Meatball Gigante, Spaghetti Bolognese, Pizza Margherita and Chicken Parmigiana. For dessert, littles can choose from tiramisu, Nutella and banana stromboli or fruit.
Chops Grille, Sabor and Izumi
No matter your taste, there is a restaurant for you. For a quiet lunch or elegant dinner, Chops Grille offers meat lovers “the best steak at sea.” If you love Mexican cuisine, make a reservation at Sabor. And, for fresh sushi and sizzling hibachi, don’t miss Izumi.
If you’d prefer to spend a little less but still want something special, try reservation-free extras like Johnny Rockets and Cups and Scoops on the Boardwalk, for hamburgers and ice cream. A smoothie from Vitality Café or a Starbucks coffee can also be a nice treat.
But even if you decide to stick to the food that is included with your cruise, you have plenty of options. Before bed, hang your room service order on your door, to start your morning with complimentary coffee and fruit. For light bites throughout the day, munch on pizza from Sorrento’s, made-to-order quesadillas and nachos from El Loco Fresh or a grilled cheese from Cafe Promenade. You can also head to Windjammer, a huge eatery with a seemingly endless array of free fruit, salads, bread, meats, cheeses and desserts.
Allure of the Seas Itineraries
Allure of the Seas sails from Galveston, Texas on seven-night Western Caribbean cruises for the 2022-2023 winter season. Destinations include Costa Maya and Cozumel, Mexico and Roatan, Honduras. To plan your next Royal Caribbean cruise from Texas, visit Royal Caribbean’s website.
When not running around on adventures with her five children, Heidi Gollub volunteers for the Austin Convention and Visitors Bureau and creates content for the local news. She frequently appears on television and was recently a speaker at Mom 2.0 and the Texas Conference for Women.