As a Gold member of Carnival Cruiseline our experience on the Vista ship exceeded our expectations. Not only the added delicious and healthy food choices, but the unbelievable enthusiasm of the crew members made us feeling welcome, comfortable and relaxed.
5 out of 5
Embarkation process (including the parking arrangements)was very efficient, smooth and fast. Due to poor weather condition the Lido deck was a bit crowded when entering the ship early. But this was only temporarily until 1:30 pm when the rooms were ready.
Food and Dining
5 out of 5
Cruising may be a challenge living a healthy diet. Vista really improved the choices for healthy options in the dining rooms and specialty restaurants. The brunch on sea days was wonderful, especially the 5 cold pressed power juices to order were amazing. Now back home we try to integrate them in our breakfast. We only used the buffet 3 times (first day and returning from excursions) and we wished there would have been more grilled/sautéed vegetables and proteins available without the heavier sauces.
4 out of 5
We enjoyed more our togetherness utilizing our cheers program hanging out in all the different locations on the ship. The fitness studio was always in our mind but...we had 3 exciting excursions, we walked a lot and took the stairs (deck 2 up to deck 15) at all times with the exception of debarkation day with our luggage.
We planned to play Black Jack in the casino and brought quite some cash. But unfortunately the casino was one of the few smoking designated areas and the air ventilation couldn’t handle the heavy smoke. Having asthma the casino was out of question. We even always walked different decks instead of passing through. On a positive note:
Instead of gambling and losing our money we spend our cash tipping the crew members that impressed us with their wonderful service and attitude.
5 out of 5
Great entertainment options. We really enjoyed the stage shows.
The performers interacted with the audience before, during and after the show. Extending the ship’s commitment of above & beyond customer service and hospitality in every aspect and department. That’s in our opinion, that’s how we experienced our vacation.
Service and Staff
5 out of 5
Our room attendant was Ramel. He always greeted us by name (how can he remember?) and was never too occupied with his duties to take a minute making sure we have everything we need. He showed interest in our activities, dining experiences, excursions, and always had this contagious smile.
Our head waiter in the Horizon restaurant was Sabeur. He and his team member Ali transformed our dining into priceless memories.
Despite the fast paced environment they always found time to learn about our daily activities and food and beverage preferences.
Their attentive, informed and suggestive service led to a wonderful dining experience above & beyond.
We celebrated Mark’s birthday in a speciality restaurant instead in the Horizon restaurant with Sabeur and Ali. But that did not stop them surprising us with a special happy birthday sing along for breakfast with special treats. Thank you Sabeur, Ali and Ramel for all you are doing!
5 out of 5
Beautiful design. The always changing light creation in the shape of a gigantic martini glass in the atrium (and in the casino) was very impressive. The ship was very well maintained and clean. All around the ship there was always cleaning personnel ready for any mishaps on the floors.
Cabin / Stateroom
5 out of 5
We received an upgrade of our 6th deck inside cabin to a 2nd deck cabin with two windows. Great size, a lot of room for two travelers with a large bathroom. Very comfortable and very clean, thanks to our room attendant Ramel.
Make sure you book your excursions in advance. We missed the “Behind the Fun” which supposed to be a birthday gift. We ended up on a waiting list but never had the fun to see behind the fun.
Easy to leave the ship. Very well organized port to find designated excursion groups. We booked the Ultimate Adventure Combo. I did a couple zip lining tours before, but it was Mark’s first experience. Our guides were very knowledgeable and experienced. They took any hesitation or fear to make everyone comfortable and actually enjoying the thrill. If 6 years old (the guides did tandem zip lining with the youngsters) or 60+ years old (like us) and anyone in between: We all had a blast. The combo incorporated 3 different adventures: The Superman zip line, 11 combined zip lines with extreme heights and speeds, and the jungle tour passing 7 suspension bridges. Between the different adventures we always transferred back to our starting point where we had our personal belongings in lockers, could get refreshments or snacks, and use the bathrooms. At the end we could buy our pictures downloaded on a USB stick for a small amount (we paid $20 for a set of 18 pictures).
We learned a lot about the culture, flora and fauna. Overall a wonderful excursion well worth any money we spent, but never forget to bring small change for tipping!
Belize is only accessible with tender boats, about 10 to 30 minutes depending on the boat and the captain, lol. Once again, very well organized by the Vista crew to get thousands of vacationers off the ship.
Unfortunately our (in advance) booked excursion got cancelled due to not enough participants. We really looked forward to the Belize City highlights, traditional dances and music and learning about Belize’s rum making history. Not to forget to sample the award winning One Barrel Rum and other unique blends.
But: We explored Belize on our own and walked away from the busy tourist port. We met Jason, a young cab driver who drove us to a very unique restaurant at the beach after we told him we would like to enjoy some real Belizean food and yes, we heard about the Belizean brewed beer, the Belikin, and about Belize’s Baron Gin. We sat on the restaurant’s patio right at the beach and enjoyed the food, the view and the drinks. Good thing we set the alarm to call Jason to get us back to the port on time. He was not just a cab driver. He told us a lot about the city and history. He turned our disappointment about the cancelled tour around and was our personal tour guide. In return we exchange our refund into a great tip and a gift certificate to spend a night out with his wife. One day we will come back and tour Belize with Jason an drink Belikin beer because we cannot find that beer anywhere in the USA...
Just walking of the ship and seeing 5 gigantic cruise ships docked at the port you may wonder. But no matter how many thousands of people disembarked almost the same time, the authorities still managed the flood of tourists.
We booked the ATV Jungle Adventure & Beach excursion and gladly found our meeting spot after a short walk. About 15 minutes later we walked to our air conditioned tour bus. A short drive to the jungle we had personal lockers and yes, bathrooms. And off we went to a 70 minutes fun ride. In between we had stops to take pictures of iguanas watching us passing by, and to learn about some history and the flora and fauna. These 70 minutes were filled with a lot of fun. We didn’t want it to end. Afterwards we had a short drive to a beach hotel / restaurant and could use all the amenities like beach lounge chairs, showers, towels, etc., all included in the excursion price.
The restaurant though had a really great kitchen and as the time was short for doing too much other fun stuff we just hung out for a wonderful lunch and some drinks. A wonderful experience with wonderful guides. Keep your memories but leave your tips!
5 out of 5
Disembarkation with Vista was the fastest I ever did. We kept our suitcase, went a last time to the Horizon restaurant for breakfast and our good-bye hugs from our favorite servers. We then waited at the Java Blue Cafe with one last specialty coffee for our turn to leave. Going through security took almost 1 hour. The shuttle to the parking was fast and efficient. At about 10:00 am we were on the highway heading home.
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