I sailed on Carnival Splendor on Sunday, September 16. My family sailed on this exact same cruise last year. This year my mother came along to spend time with her granddaughter. This was our fourth Carnival Cruise and my mother's first Carnival Cruise.
Embarkation: This was a breeze. We arrived around 11:15am and were on the ship at 12:05pm. Our rooms were still being cleaned, so we dropped off a few items and went straight to the Lido Deck. One of the hidden gems on this ship is the Rotisserie Chicken. Not many people go to the second level of the buffet. I had told my mother about it before hand and she definitely loved it.
Rooms: My family had a port hole room as did my mother. Very spacious rooms with a nice view through 2 port hole windows. Great closet and drawer space for a family of 3. I never felt cramped at all. Our cabin steward was great. The room was always clean and of course we had our towel animal every night.
Staff: Overall they were very friendly. Really enjoyed speaking with our head waiter and his staff at dinner. I appreciated they knew certain items we wanted at dinner every night and that they called us by name every night.
Entertainment: Comedians were funny, talent show for guest on board was surprisingly entertaining, don't usually see main shows. I would have liked another showing of Superstar Live. They only had it on Sunday night. Last year on Splendor they had it twice.
Camp Carnival: My daughter is 4 years old and just loves this place. She absolutely loves meeting new friends. It was nice to see them playing with each other in the Splash Park or in the swimming pools. My daughter even teamed up with another girl to do a ballerina duet for the Camp Carnival talent show.
Steakhouse: Absolutely delicious. Nothing but high praise for this place. We went two nights on this cruise. The steaks are so tender that they basically melt in your mouth. The lobster is also better in the steakhouse then what they serve on the first elegant night in the main dining room.
Cabo was an absolute blast. We took a water taxi to Lover's Beach. They gave us a tour before dropping us off. This was definitely the highlight of the cruise. To see two bodies of water collide like that was amazing. The water was really powerful there. Getting in and out of the water taxi was a challenge in itself. My daughter had a blast as we played in the water and attempted to build a hole for her.
Puerto Vallarta was more about just getting off the ship to take some photos and get back on. We went to the closest beach, but it was very dirty. Looked at a few shops and went back to the ship.
Negatives: As with anything in life everything wasn't perfect. On 3 separate occasions Camp Carnival called us at night saying that our kid was the only one in their or there weren't a lot of kids in there. Two of those times we were watching the comedians perform. In my opinion it's there job to watch my daughter whether there are 20 kids or 1 kid. They are getting paid regardless. It caused us to change our plans on 3 separate occasions. Another issue I had was them not playing hip hop in the Red Carpet Dance Club. They had specific theme nights for basically every other genre except hip hop. I took offense to that. As I mentioned earlier in the review I wish they had another night of Superstar Live Karaoke. There were a couple of nights that we struggled to find something entertaining to do.
Overall: I would definitely recommend this ship to anyone who hasn't cruised or who has been on numerous cruises. It's a big ship, but rarely do you feel like it's overcrowded. From kids to adults they do offer an array of entertainment. I've gone two years in a row, so my family and I are ready to tackle the Caribbean now. Carnival Dream next September. Can't wait!!!!!!!