Harmony of the Seas is an impressive ship, not just because it’s the world’s largest with a capacity of 5,479 passengers, but also because of the massive number of dining and drinking venues, entertainment options and onboard activities. Nighttime spaces are meant for dancing, listening to music and even doing some singing of your own. If you prefer a more sedate cruise experience, it would be best to look elsewhere. But, if you seek multiple theater-style shows, awesome sun-deck pools, water slides and a dry slide, one of the best kids clubs at sea, and a plethora of dining options, Harmony is your new go-to ship.
The dining venues included in your cruise fare are many and varied on Harmony. In addition to the three main dining rooms, nine other eateries will tempt you — everything from Sorrento’s Pizzeria to the Boardwalk Dog House to the Windjammer Marketplace buffet and more. You’ll find some menu items are delicious and others are lackluster. And Vitality Café (located in the Vitality Spa area) is the only place on the ship where you can find light food — such as wraps, yogurt parfaits, smoothies and fresh juice — for an additional fee.
If you want to be assured of an excellent meal, it’s worth it to sample one of the many specialty restaurants on the ship. While Izumi Hibachi and Sushi and Sabor Taqueria and Tequila Bar are wildly popular, consider trying one of the restaurants designed by celebrity chefs. 150 Central Park offers multicourse meals from chef Michael Schwartz; the three-course meal is standard and will cost you $45, while the four-course meal with included wine is meant to WOW you at $89 per person. Most of the foods and drinks are prepared tableside, which makes for a longer-than-typical dinner, but with each course being paired with wine, it actually gives you time to enjoy the wine and company. Jamie Oliver presides over Jamie’s Italian, which serves lunch on sea days ($20) and dinner every night ($25). The lunch menu is smaller, but no matter when you dine here, the food still has that rustic and wholesome flavor that Jamie Oliver’s recipes are known for.
Tip: Make reservations for specialty restaurants as soon as you know you want to dine there. There are a lot of options, but with so many people on board, the reservations go fast.
And there’s even a Starbucks on board for those needing their specialty-coffee fix.
Things to Do
If you’re traveling with friends or family, you’ll love the myriad options when it comes to entertainment and activities, both during the day and at night. The Royal Theater presents an excellent version of Grease, while the AquaTheater amazes with performances that include acrobatics and high-dive stunts. You also can go rock climbing, test out one of three water slides, try a 10-story dry slide, enjoy the FlowRider surf simulator, play a round of mini-golf and so much more. The casino is impressive and hosts tournaments throughout the sailing. It is the only indoor smoking area on the ship, but like so many other ships, the smoke does spread to nearby places.
The Promenade offers a seemingly never-ending lane of bars, lounges and shops. And the expansive Vitality Spa and Fitness Center has one of the largest spas at sea. And for families, this ship is nirvana. It’s got Royal Caribbean’s Adventure Ocean kids club, DreamWorks character meet-and-greets and kid-friendly play areas throughout the ship.
- Even the most jaded cruiser can find something of interest on this ship, but all those bells and whistles come with a price.
- This is a crowded vessel, so if you’re looking for serenity and privacy, it will be hard to come by on Harmony.
- Our other quibbles with the ship are minor: the quality of the free dining venues could be more consistent, and it’s a drag that all but suite passengers must bring their own shampoo and conditioner from home (cabins only receive a bar of soap and shower gel via a dispenser).