Independence of the Seas Live Blog – Day 3 – Nassau

I spent the day exploring Nassau, our first port of call. My first day in port in Nassau last August was a little tricky due to lack of planning and rain, so I felt more prepared today.

Before my cruise, I purchased a day pass to Warwick Paradise Island from Resortforaday.com. Resort For A Day allows you to purchase day passes for hotels and resorts in popular destinations in the Caribbean, Mexico and the United States.

The Warwick is an adults-only, all-inclusive hotel located on the harbor side of Paradise Island. A full, in-depth review of my experience there will be published next week, but here’s a quick rundown:

I got off the boat around 10am and took a taxi to Paradise Island. The cab ride to the Warwick took about 10 minutes and I paid $12. Once I checked in as a day guest, I started exploring the resort.

The first thing you’ll notice at the Warwick is the massive pool. There’s a large pool, a small hot tub, and plenty of seating areas throughout the property.

Because the Warwick is located in the harbor, it doesn’t have an unobstructed view of the ocean like you would on the other side of the island. There is a small beach, however, as well as hammocks and a volleyball net on the sand.

Unfortunately, today’s weather in Nassau was not ideal. The wind was intense and with temperatures around 70 degrees, I was rather cold. Unsurprisingly, the pool remained empty all day!

One of the good things about the Warwick is that it’s all-inclusive, so there was no need to worry about choosing food or drink options under a certain amount.

There are two lunch options at the resort: food by the pool and the buffet located indoors. However, the buffet was closed for lunch today, so I went to lunch by the pool and ordered quinoa salad and conch fritters. The food was quite good and I liked how they had options to accommodate many different diets.

After lunch, I grabbed a piña colada and swung in a hammock on the beach for a few minutes before the rain returned. Shivering in the hammock as the raindrops fell on me, I concluded that while the resort was really nice, today just wasn’t a day at the beach.

I took a cab back to downtown Nassau. The last time I was in Nassau was in August and it was way too hot to comfortably walk around the city. So even though today wasn’t the best day to go to the beach, it was a perfect day to walk around Nassau.

First, a trip to see the Queen’s Staircase and Fort Fincastle. This historic staircase is located in the fort complex in Nassau and consists of 66 steps in a lush walkway. The stairs lead directly to the Fort, which is the highest point in Nassau. There were local guides available at the fort and at the stairway. While I walked there myself, Royal Caribbean offers shore excursions that visit both of these places if you prefer to take an organized tour.

I also grabbed a coconut from two friendly Bahamians on the side of the road near the top of the Queen’s staircase. One of my favorite parts of the trip is chatting with the locals to get to know them and their culture, so we chatted for a few minutes before continuing my walk.

If you’ve never tried fresh coconut water or you’re dehydrated from walking around Nassau in the summer, be sure to grab a coconut from these guys!

Overall, I much preferred exploring the stairway and fort over wandering the touristy streets just outside the cruise port. I returned to the boat at the end of the afternoon.

Tonight’s dinner was at Izumi Hibachi. This is one of my favorite things to do while on a cruise because of the energy it brings to a dining experience. I also like how it pulls the whole passenger table together. It’s much more social than eating at separate tables!

Our hibachi chef today was funny, upbeat, and had an excellent talent for building a “volcano” out of onions. Yes, an onion volcano. Every time I order a vegetable hibachi I always get a different type of dish (I guess every chef has a different “go to” for a vegetarian option). Today our chef cooked vegetable and tofu udon which definitely hit the mark.

Thanks also to our server Dan for being a fan of the Royal Caribbean blog!

After dinner, I went to Studio B to watch Freeze Frame, Independence of the Seas’ ice skating show. Ice shows are my favorite type of performance to watch on board. Due to an injury, however, the entertainment was changed.

Instead of the usual show, several cast members were brought onto the ice and briefly quizzed about their background and skating experience by the cruise director. After their “get to know you” session, the actor skated for the audience. When the show ended, five cast members performed together.

Although not the normal show, I really enjoyed the revised production they played tonight and it was fascinating to learn more about the cast.

Ended my day at the Star Lounge for a Big Band jazz concert. It was a relaxing way to end a busy day in Nassau and on board.

Tomorrow is the last day of our cruise and we will be at Perfect Day at CocoCay.

Parasitic observations:

Many cruise passengers stay on the ship in Nassau, but I think New Providence Island has a lot to offer beyond jewelry stores and Atlantis. I look forward to finding more authentic experiences there for my next cruise. If anyone has any recommendations, please leave a comment below!

Izumi Hibachi/Teppanyaki is a great dining option for a solo cruiser. Tables seat eight people, so you’ll be seated with other passengers who may not know each other either. Tonight there were four different groups of people and we chatted all dinner!


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