Nice Ship; Long Lines
Carnival Victory Cruise Review to Caribbean - Southern
Sail Date: July 03, 2011
Ship: Carnival Victory
Cabin Type: Balcony
Traveled As: Couple
Reviewed: 6 years ago
Maybe if we hadn't previously sailed on Carnival's Freedom and Glory ships before our week on the Carnival Victory, we would have a kinder review. The three ships are similar, but having been launched first, the Victory's deck plan lacked some of the public space that was added to the later versions. It was most noticed in the Lido deck restaurant. While the Glory and Freedom each had four serving lines in their restaurants, the Victory only had two. And the design flaw was augmented by the ship frequently closing one of those two serving lines. The grill was also closed frequently. The other two ships used the serving island in their Lido restaurants to offer fresh fruit and deserts. On the Victory, that station was frequently not used. And expect a wait if you try to avoid the crowds via the open seating in the main dining room for breakfast. The service in that venue was fine, but we still had to wait through a long line to be seated.
The Victory is a good ship. For the most part it is consistent with what we've expected in our eight cruises on Carnival. We expect crowds on these ships, but the people running the Victory just didn't have the plans to deal with them in the efficient manner we saw on the Freedom, Glory, Destiny, Fascination and Imagination. (Yes, we've sailed a couple of them more than once.)
If you're a light sleeper, you may want to study the deck plans before selecting your cabin. Our cabin on the 8th (Verandah) deck was under a deck that surrounded a swimming pool. When the crew arranged the deck chairs on the 9th deck each evening or early morning, we were VERY aware of it. Similar accommodations are available on the 7th floor. These would be quieter. The 9th deck tapers off in the forward section, so you wouldn't have this problem on the 8th deck toward the front either.
A southern Caribbean cruise allows you to visit a variety of islands. Barbados is a nice place, with a good infrastructure and cordial people. We promised a cab driver named Bernie in St. Kitts that we would mention him in reviews. So if in St. Kitts, find a cab driver named Bernie. He's a nice guy and will show you a good time. He recommended Cockleshell Beach, which cost $6.50 per person each way for the cab ride, then his friends gave us beach chairs and an umbrella for $3 per person. The ride let us see a nice part of the island as well. In St. Maarten, we went to Dawn Beach. We used to like Orient Beach 20 years ago but it has become really crowded and commercial.
We have around 20 cruises behind us. The last five have been on Carnival. We'll probably try another line next time.
Food and Dining
Service and Staff
Cabin / Stateroom
Ports of Call
Don't Miss: Free WIFI outside the Rum Shop in the little shopping center near the dock.
Pros: Islands we visited; food
Cons: Long Lines for meals and returning to ship