For starters, I'm 23 years old and just graduated from college. This cruise was my graduation present. It was my first time cruising, so I had no idea what to expect. I did know that I wanted to party and socialize ALOT!
It took a long time to get through customs and get on the boat. I arrived at the port around 11am and we didn't get on the boat until around 1:30pm. By the time we got on the boat, our luggage had already arrived and was outside our room. The boat was the Carnival Conquest, and it was huge. It took me at least 3 days to get the layout of the boat down. The most confusing part was that you have to go to the front of the boat to get into the dining room, otherwise you have to walk through the dining room.
The food was pretty good. I'd say it was about a 7/10. I'm not really into fancy dining, but they had something for everyone. I do wish they had more than a pizza bar open after midnight though. I ate pizza every night and was craving some chicken tenders and cheese burgers. The buffet wasn't bad either. Our waitress was awesome. She remembered my name after the 1st day. I loved our waitress so much, I made sure to give her an extra $50 tip.
The lido deck was where 75% of everyone was during the day. You'd basically get up, put something on, get food on the lido deck, and go out to the pool. I never got into the pool because there weren't any open chairs, and there were people (almost) shoulder to shoulder around the perimeter of the pool. The hot tub was nice.
I also liked the casino. I lost a little bit of money ($45 to be exact). But it was all in good fun. I was actually up around $100, but was socializing and ended up losing. No biggie though.
The shows were great too. The comedy shows were hilarious, although the seating was extremely limited. If you didn't get there 20+ minutes early, you'd more than likely be standing for the comedy show. I didn't really care for the musicals, but my mother loved them. The also had SO MUCH TRIVIA everyday on the ship. I didn't care for the trivia.
Finally the partying. The partying was almost non existent. I'm 23 and I wasn't able to get into Club O2 (the teen club). I went into Henri's (the adult club) and they played 70's music from 9pm-12am. There were old, old, OLD people in there at this time. At midnight, some younger people came in, but there was never a point in time where there were more than 50 people in the club. I ended up meeting a lot of the teenagers on the basketball court and sneaking into the teen club later on in the cruise.
Overall it was a fun experience that I would definitely do again. But I would go in without the expectation of partying.