Carnival Fascination Cruise Review to Caribbean - Bahamas

Deck Hand

1 cruise (first)


Helpful Votes

3 out of 5

First Cruise

Sail Date: September 13, 2010

Reviewed: 6 years ago

Traveled As: Family w/young children

Room Type: Balcony

The ship is one of the oldest in the fleet - it was OK, but nothing impressive. The food selections and quality were way over-hyped from other cruisers that I spoke with in advance. I was very disappointed that the midnight buffet was hot dogs and hamburgers. My 5-year-old did not like Camp Carnival and I found that overall the ship was NOT kid friendly. The staff in the dining room were kid friendly, and she really enjoyed the water park, but that was really the only thing there was for her to do.

The room was good - the beds were comfortable - even though the room was small, it was enough - we got a balcony and it definitely was worth it.

The shore excursions were a waste. I do not recommend booking shore excursions - you can find things to do MUCH cheaper on your own.

The staff on the ship did not live up to the "fun cruise" marketing campaign by Carnival. Many of the event staff had a "too cool for you" attitude and were not very good at getting the crowd going. I suppose if you had enough liquor in you all of the events were fun.

The Lido deck was definitely not a family friendly environment. The deck is open on the top, but has side walls. This made for a very smoky walk to get to the water park. Not to mention it was full of drunk people. The pool was super small. There is an 'adults only' section at the back of the ship and it was disappointing that more adults didn't take advantage of it, especially the smokers and drinkers. It would be nice if the smokers were not allowed to smoke on the Lido deck, especially since that is where two of their buffet lines are.

Pros: Sea Days, Water Park, Sun Deck, Dessert

Cons: Shore Excursions

Recommends Carnival Fascination? Yes!

Cabin / Stateroom
Comfortable beds
Evening shows were pretty good - the adults only comedy show was more vulgar than funny. The audience was funnier than the comedienne. The big water slide was pretty fun but you can only ride it so many times before the fun wears off.
Service and Staff
Guest Services was pretty much useless. I can cite two examples. We experienced a little bit of bad weather - inquired to guest services to find out if the competition was moved - there apparently was a disconnect between the event staff and guest services. They were clueless and not helpful.

We play some games in the arcade - one of the machines took all of our tokens (games are $1.25 each). Informed one of the members of the housekeeping staff and he instructed us to go to guest services. Waited in line at guest services only to be redirected to the Casino guy. The Casion guy tried to ping pong us back to guest services. I had to turn into the cranky passenger to get results. It wasn't that $1.25 mattered, it was the principle of the thing. The response was annoying and frustrating.
Children's Programs
My 5-year-old did not like Camp Carnival. She didn't really have a specific reason why, but I figure if the program was as good as they hype it up to be she would have wanted to go back. We spent a lot of time at the water park. Beware that kids must be 42" in order to ride the water slides. There is a tiny waterslide for smaller tots. My daughter is about 41" - we rode the medium slides anyway and went with her everytime the staff member changed so that she could continue to ride them without being questioned about her height. We experience one very cranky staff member but told her we were riding the slides anyway.
Ship Quality
Too smokey on the Lido deck and inside the ship, especially outside the Sensation dining room.
Food and Dining
Most desserts were good, but overall the food was not of any higher quality than most decent restaurants. You can eat as much as you want, even in the maiin dining room, but the quality was average.
Nassau, Bahamas
Beaches were disappointing. Atlantis is VERY expensive. I recommend taking a cab and going on your own. We spent $40/person for a beach excursion and it was a joke. The beach was very small, the waves were ridiculous, and the "free welcome drink" they advertise was alcohol free fruit punch in a tiny plastic cup. Very disappointing.
Don't Miss: The Straw Market was pretty cool. If you can affort about $150/person, check out Atlantis.
Key West, Florida
If you like bars and shopping, this is the place for you. There is a beautiful reef, but the weather and tides have to be just right to enjoy it.

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