May 2015 - Carnival Inspiration to Mexico
This cruise was fun for us. It was exactly what we wanted -- some time to relax. The itinerary wasn't too demanding and allowed for some relaxation. The ship was even floating at sea for much of the voyage since the ports were close together.
The ports-of-call featured cities tours and adventurous excursions. They were ports that were easy to navigate on your own without getting lost or risk not getting back to the ship in time.
The ship (Inspiration) seemed to be an older Carnival ship. Most were great given it was an older ship, but they could have added more hot tubs. The Serenity area (supposed to be adults only) had hot tubs that were always packed to capacity. At one point we saw a few kids under 18 in this area and no staff enforced the age restrictions. This took away from the otherwise unique experience. We both have cruised several times before and on bigger ships with aggressive itineraries and shorter cruises with a more relaxed pace. So it is interesting getting to see what Carnival has to offer during their shorter cruises. Royal Caribbean seems to provide a little more luxury for the dollar and they visited similar ports of call as we saw their ship while docked too. The Carnival ship and ports of call during this trip did not really entice us to prefer Carnival over other cruise lines when cruising again, but this cruise was still a good pace for what we were looking for at the time -- a relaxed pace and a good value.
I would recommend this cruise for first-timers. It helps to get acquainted with the world of cruising without an itinerary that is action-packed.