It was all we hoped it would be! We met some fantastic fellow passengers from around the country. Had great service from a friendly crew. And met up with a favorite member of the "Fun Squad".
5 out of 5
With VIP boarding we were shuttled through the process smoothly and we arrived as the wedding parties started boarding, so we were on quickly. Dropped our checked baggage in the cabin, picked up our room keys and were having lunch on the Lido within 30 minutes of arriving at the ship.
Food and Dining
4 out of 5
Breakfast on the Lido was crowded, after the first day went to MDR for breakfast and enjoyed the choices. While the same menu was available every day, we had different things each morning. We did not go to the sea day brunch or the Cat in the Hat brunch. Lunch options on the buffet standard with each day having a different theme. Also available daily was: a salad bar, Guy’s Burgers, Deli, Pizza, Blue Iguana (Mexican) for free and Crab shack for cost. The Pig and Anchor was available on deck 5, but we didn’t make it there this cruise. We ate dinner every night in the MDR. We had YTD and found the best wait staff the first evening (Ramil, I Made & Anaola) and sat a table 158 in the Sapphire Dining Room every night. The view from this dining room on deck 3 is obstructed by the life boats, making a window less important than on other ships.
5 out of 5
As with most cruises one can be as busy or not as you choose. There were many of the regular games like bingo, trivial, trivial pursuit, yatzee, etc. There was also a Clue game with all the characters that ran for the duration of the cruise. The Thrill Theater was filled with season related showings. There were three levels #1 for families, # 2 PG and #3 for mature, with scare factor from mild to gory. The Thrill Theater is 5D so your seat moves, you may get sprayed with water (blood), have wind blow on you and 3D glasses that put you in the film. I do not like to frightened so I only did #1 & #2. My DH went to #3 and said it was gruesome. It did not seem as smooth of a ride as on the Vista. Carnival hosts a military appreciation function, this one was exceptional as there was a 98 year old WWII veteran in attendance, she got a standing ovation. This cruise hosted a slot tournament with over 400 entrants. The casino was always busy. The Sports Square was busy with a ropes course (not me), billiards, foosball and min golf
4 out of 5
Carnival had 2 new (to us) Playlist shows. We attended one and are saving the other for our January sailing. The singer/dancers were top notch. The comedians changed mid cruise. The Comedy host, CoCo, was outstanding. I except to see her as CD in the future. We enjoyed “The Cowboy Comedian”. Music was everywhere; our favorite was Variety Violin Music with Sky Breeze in the atrium.
Service and Staff
5 out of 5
As already mentioned the dining room staff was great, the hostess, Sangi, checked on us every night to be sure we were satisfied with the meal and service. Our room steward, Merta and his assistant Yudshi were attentive. We asked for a blanket because the comforter was too hot and just a sheet wasn’t quite warm enough. We had one that night. One of the lights on a night stand was burned out and replaced by the time we returned to the cabin after letting them know about it. On the Lido the wait staff was friendly and willing to chat. Zara made me laugh a lot and she remembered me every day. The house keeping staff were cleaning constantly and it was a good thing because some of our fellow passengers left plates of food in the stairways and elevators. The staff in the Effy store were friendly and helpful (got my birthday and Christmas present…sparkley).
4 out of 5
The elements have not been kind to the ship with rust showing in many places on the outside. The weather decks have wear and tear, but maintenance workers were often out painting and cleaning things, especially on the Sports Square. Deck 5 which most people use to go from Aft to Forward goes through the casino which is very smoky. However, deck 4 also goes completely through. The artwork on the staircase landings was fun and brought a smile to our faces as we went from deck to deck.
Cabin / Stateroom
5 out of 5
Having cruised Carnival several times, we find a balcony cabin with cabins above and below us to be our best option. We had such a cabin and it was only 3 “doors” away from the ironing room (great for those who don’t like to be wrinkled). It didn’t take away and of the skin wrinkles, however.
Use deck 4 to go from the front of the ship to the back (or the other way) to avoid the smoke in the Casino.
We used “Goportcanaveral” for the first time this cruise. They book your hotel (which has a shuttle from the airport) and shuttle you from hotel to the port and the port back to the airport. It was as good as advertised. We had to wait until the buss was full to go to the airport, but they told us that up front. This make sailing out of Port Canaveral reasonable.
Since we will be returning here in January we decided just to check out the area around the ship. A nice bit of shopping, a swim-up bar, an awesome water slide and fun area for children. We stopped had drinks and got free WiFi to check in with home.
We have been here many times and enjoy each visit. There was a bit of rain which halted the Sky Ride we had planned to take. So we joined some fellow passengers in an open air bus for a trip around the Island to the highest point where we could view both sides. A most enjoyable adventure.
We love the history of this place and retraced our steps of the Old City. We also talked with many of our fellow passengers explaining the history of the blue cobble stones that still pave many of the streets. Works is being done to preserve the outer wall to the Old City.
A very hot day so we just walked the beach. Stopped and had a local beer and again used the free WiFi to check in with the home front. Returned to the ship to cool off in the air conditioning. We’ll be back in January (twice in the two weeks of our B2B).
5 out of 5
The quickest and easiest we have ever done. We chose to self-assist in order to be early for our shuttle (early flight) and Port Canaveral has facial recognition (using your passport photo) for customs. It was new but streamlined the process to less than 5 minutes.
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