Enchantment of the Seas in key West

EnchantmentPort CanaveralKey WestNassauCoco Cay

Enchantment of the Seas

A Winter getaway

I can't remember how far in advance we booked this cruise, but we were right that escaping the snow and cold in January 2011 would be a good idea. We boarded the Enchantment of the Seas in Baltimore for a seven night diversion. The main destination on this trip was the ship itself; and the warmer weather it would be journeying through.

The Centrum grand staircase, deck 4 A 3d deckplan of the Enchantment A bartender hustling to create some drinks at the schooner bar, deck 6 The Palladium Theatre, deck 5 Duty-free shop, deck 6 A welcome on board watermelon Cycles in an exercise stuidio Pool area planters Casino Royale, Deck 5 Hallway of the Enchantment Statue outside the Palladium Theatre, Deck 6 Boutiques and shops, Deck 6 Centrum from Deck 7

We boarded the ship, found our state room, and started to learn the deckplan as we waited for the rest of the passengers to complete boarding.

Window view: Port of Baltimore Window view: Cars covered in snow in the Cruise terminal lot The south of Baltimore harbor from on deck Downtown baltimore with I-95 in the foreground Ships moored in the outer harbor Cars covered in snow in the Cruise terminal lot The port of Baltimore gangway The ship nestled against pier bumpers

Walking around that high up off the water was certainly a new point of view. As interesting as the new ship was the surrounding port of Baltimore, covered in ice and snow.

The ship's smokestacks Prop wash and thrusters pushing off Frozen water and early morning traffic in baltimore Prop wash disturbing the water and birds seeking scraps Lindsey on deck in Baltimore cold Birds standing on frozen water The pool area glass as we leave Baltimore Approaching the Key Bridge Transiting the Key bridge

The ship pushed away from the pier and we were off! We sailed underneath the Key bridge, but it was too cold to stay out on deck any longer than that. In 2 days we'd be in sunny Florida.

(Note that passing under the Key Bridge's 185 foot vertical clearance is a major feature of the Enchantment. Her 164 foot air draft is the same as other Vision Class ships, but she was lengthened 74 feet to provide more ameneties, so she is one of the larger cruise ships to berth in Baltimore.)

Our interrior state room Lindsey ready for running at sea. Not quite warm yet. Lindsey Running in Key West 1 Lindsey Running in Key West 2 The indoor pool area An indoor hot tub Lindsey and Jeremy on formal night. A mojito at Boleros Lounge, Deck 5 Mojito again

We enjoyed the on-board activities including the topside running track, many swimming pools, formal dinners in the My Fair Lady Dining Room, and eclectic bars all over the ship.

Crew securing the ship in Key West Bridge officers docking in Key West Crew raising flags Ship's radar mast

And I thought it was interesting to watch the crew in their duties as we navigated various ports.

Lindsey waiting to debark in Key West Pool area daytime Pool deck from the Viking Crown Lounge, Deck 11 Pool Deck from the Jogging track, deck 10 Pool Deck opposite the Viking Crown Lounge, Deck 10 Lindsey Reading in a deck chair Pool deck from the poolside An island

But of course one of the big draws was just being outside in the warm sunshine.

Pool area with fins Pool area lights A carnival ship docking after us in Key West A life ring Wet morning glass The Enchantment from an observation tower in key West The Enchantment from pierside in Key West Enchantment stern from dockside Nassau

It was a fun adventure and really opened my eyes to the idea of a cruise vacation as a destination itself, rather than just a means of transit between ports of call.

EnchantmentPort CanaveralKey WestNassauCoco Cay