February 2016 - Carnival Paradise to Caribbean - Western
This cruise was a great vacation for our family - my husband, myself and our 2 kids - 8 year old boy and 5 year old girl. This length of time was perfect for us and the size of ship is great because it's not so overwhelming for our first cruise as a family.
A few tips -
1) We went to the cruise port about 9:45 am. No lines. Checked in easily. We did not do "faster to the fun" pass and felt like we got to the fun in plenty of time. We boarded around 11:30 and went right up to the restaurant for lunch and the kids got right into the pool. We had our swim gear in our backpack not in our checked bags.
2) Kids loved Camp Carnival. Our 5 year old ended up going in with the 6-8 year old because she is almost 6. I was very glad they did this for us. They had a great experience and mostly were there in the evenings while my husband and I went to shows. They did stay after 10 one night so they do charge for that but it's well worth it.
3) We did our own excursions in ports. We love the beach and did that on our own. Grand Cayman - we went to Royal Palms. Took a cab. $20 for our family of 4 including tip each way. Wonderful beach, volleyball. Good mojitos! Cozumel we went to Mr. Sanchos. Good for our kids, nice beach and food. Again, for our family of 4 to go, took a cab $20 each way including tip.
4) Our kids did the sit down meal each night at 6 pm and we did take a family pic when we were all dressed up. Our team did a great job taking care of us and our kids needs. They loved the music and dancing around the room. Good work!