My wife and I traveled on Carnival Victory 08/28/2005. Let me begin my review with a few words. If I had to entitle my cruise it would be the "Ghetto Funship 2005". I do not know what type of passenger Carnival is trying to lure, but surely it is a group that will poorly tip their employees. The boat was stocked with commoners trying to get a taste of the good life but had no money to spend to do it.
Also the "Whale Watcher Funship" would be another title. I am not saying a lil chubby. I am speaking of strictly the obese. Never have I seen people try to out eat what they paid for the trip. How Carnival makes money on these people I will never know. An example is at breakfast with a plate that is piled high, devoured, piled high again, devoured, piled high again and left on the table wasting. (Utterly Ridiculous.)
Finally the kids, when do they go back to school??!. All were in the hot tubs where they were not allowed. They took over the pools, Carnival really needs an adult only pool on this ship. After looking at whales and kids the first two days I decided to do excursions and stay in the casino.
As for the boat itself and those that work hard to keep her up, I can not say enough about how clean the boat was maintained. These people work extremely hard and those that made a difference to my wife and I, were tipped extremely well.
The food is great! Try the sandwiches up on Lido. Pizza was good. Dinners were great in the formal dining. Say hello to Dino!
Now to have the best time at night on the ship skip the shows and head to the piano bar or at least get over there by midnight when the "fun songs" are banged out on the key board. The piano player is one of the best on the carnival lines. He likes shooters and big tippers. American Pie he hates to play but after the end of the cruise I tipped him 100 bucks to sing it one more time. And to say "thanks for putting up with the crew of us that hung out in there all week". PS if you get him up on Lido for a few nightcaps, wear plastic cause he may hurl on you. It happened to one of us. Heh heh.
As for the excursions, in Cozumel we took the two person power boat to a private beach and it was truly a blast. Throttle all the way down and ride the wakes in single formation of about twenty boats. Also the ride to the private beach and cook out is about 45 minutes each way so you do get a good ride. Make sure the volley ball is pumped up!! Ours wasn't but the food was ok and the beach was ok.
In Grand Cayman, highly recommend the swim with the stingrays. My wife hates the ocean but loved this. You only get waist deep in the water on a sandbar and it is something that you have to experience. They are like cats.
In Jamaica we blew off Dunn's River Falls and instead shopped and hung out at Jimmy Buffett's Margaritaville. Where the Red Stripe flows freely.
Back on the boat I recommend getting your drinks on the top deck from the best pool waiter "Roman". He will take good care of you. Watch out for one of the bartenders at one of the pool bars as she is mean to her fellow employees and to the guests. Why Carnival keeps her around is beyond me. That's it for now. Adios and Bon Voyage!