Sailing the Caribbean Blue aboard MSC Divina

Sailing the Caribbean aboard MSC Cruises' MSC Divina. Not a bad way to spend a Sunday! Photo © 2015 Aaron Saunders

Sailing the Caribbean aboard MSC Cruises’ MSC Divina. Not a bad way to spend a Sunday! Photo © 2015 Aaron Saunders

Sunday, February 8, 2015

After departing from Miami, Florida last evening, MSC Cruises’ MSC Divina is making her way towards our first port of call: Philipsburg, St. Maarten. A total of 1,084 nautical miles separate us from our first stop on our Eastern Caribbean adventure, but that’s not exactly a problem. With two days of sailing the resplendent Caribbean Sea ahead of us as we zip along at 19 knots, few guests aboard MSC Divina are complaining about having to kick back and relax in the sun. It’s tough work, but someone has to do it.

When I awoke this morning, I discovered two interesting revelations about my balcony stateroom. Firstly, the blackout drapes really do their job: I thought I had awoken before dawn, and was surprised to pull back the curtains to see a bright, sunny morning greeting us.

Good Morning! The view from my balcony aboard MSC Divina today. Photo © 2015 Aaron Saunders

Good Morning! The view from my balcony aboard MSC Divina today. Photo © 2015 Aaron Saunders

Revelation Number Two: this ship is whisper-quiet. Not a single rattle or squeak can be heard from my stateroom. More importantly, noise from the corridor is almost non-existent, and rooms seem to be soundproofed rather well. If anyone had their television on in either of the staterooms bordering mine, I certainly didn’t hear a peep.

The beds aboard MSC Divina are cozy and comfortable, with mattresses that bridge the gap between soft and firm. Coupled with the gentle movement of the ship through the night, I slept like a baby.

Like any big ship, breakfast aboard MSC Divina is a bit of a contact sport...but I took this photograph with no one in it during peak dining hours, so it's by no means impossible to not stand in line! Photo © 2015 Aaron Saunders

Like any big ship, breakfast aboard MSC Divina is a bit of a contact sport…but I took this photograph with no one in it during peak dining hours, so it’s by no means impossible to not stand in line! Photo © 2015 Aaron Saunders

Up at 07:00, I went for breakfast on Deck 14 at the Calumet & Manitou Buffet. Even at that (relatively) early hour, breakfast could best be described as competitive. But, you’ll have a similar experience on any ship of this size. Here’s the trick: when you enter the buffet from the midship elevator bank, keep on walking right to the end. The Buffet runs the after length of the MSC Divina, and the further back you go, the less crowded it gets. In fact, it became downright enjoyable once I crossed over the aft elevator bank.

Fresh fruit, anyone? Photo © 2015 Aaron Saunders

Fresh fruit, anyone? Photo © 2015 Aaron Saunders

Breakfast offerings are plentiful and uncomplicated. You’ll find all the North American staples like bacon, eggs and hashbrowns, but plenty of healthy alternatives, too. There’s Muesli and yogurt in several different flavours; cereals and breads; cold cuts and cheeses; and plenty of fresh fruit.

Despite coming from a machine, the Orange Juice is superb. I have no idea if it’s freshly-squeezed (I doubt it), but it certainly tastes that way. Other juice offerings include apple and cranberry. The coffee, as you might expect, is tremendous – just fantastic. If you can avoid it, don’t put cream and sugar in it – you’re just diluting its greatness.

Bonus Points: really cool logo-branded coffee mugs in the buffet. Photo © 2015 Aaron Saunders

Bonus Points: really cool logo-branded coffee mugs in the buffet. Photo © 2015 Aaron Saunders

Morning yoga and stretching on the Pool Deck kick the day off aboard MSC Divina. Photo © 2015 Aaron Saunders

Morning yoga and stretching on the Pool Deck kick the day off aboard MSC Divina. Photo © 2015 Aaron Saunders

You can also take a jog on MSC Divina's rather deserted Lifeboat Deck, Deck 7. The promenade doesn't wrap all the way around, but it's long enough to be useful to joggers. Photo © 2015 Aaron Saunders

You can also take a jog on MSC Divina’s rather deserted Lifeboat Deck, Deck 7. The promenade doesn’t wrap all the way around, but it’s long enough to be useful to joggers. Photo © 2015 Aaron Saunders

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Our Live Voyage Report aboard MSC Cruises’ MSC Divina continues tomorrow as we spend another day cruising the Caribbean Sea en-route to Philipsburg, St. Maarten! Be sure to follow along on twitter by following @deckchairblog or the hashtag #LiveVoyageReport.

 

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