This was our annual family vacation, family of four, 2 kids ages 4 and 13. We usually cruise and decided on Carnival Breeze due to the ship being new and enjoying our last Carnival cruise on Liberty.
First, of all we live in Florida so it was a quick 4 hour drive to Miami for embarkation. We chose Premier parking for the price was right and near the port with shuttle service. I do not, I repeat do not recommend them for parking, due to it being in a sketchy area of town and the the shuttles were very small only allowing one to two families at a time on, We were in line for over 2 hours waiting for a ride, we called a cab and they never showed up due to the proximity to the port. There were no restrooms and if you have a 4 yr old like I do, they need to go every hour. My kid had to pee on a tree. There was a tent while waiting for the shuttle that only allowed two families to hide from the sun. You had to park your own car and a majority of people did not park very well, if you like your car and don't want scratches then do not use this lot.
When we finally got to the port for embarkation, the line looked long but it was very efficient and the security check was fast. The line for the keys was little wait, but not too bad, I think we were to excited to get upset with the wait, but overall the process was fast and organized.
As soon we boarded the room was ready so we went to check it out, we booked a inside cabin with a picture window the best room we have ever booked on a cruise, keep in mind I have never had a suite or balcony. We were on Lido deck and the room was very spacious with a nice view of the ocean at the front of the ship. After inspecting our room went to eat, the line for Guy's burgers was ridiculous and we decided to see what else was to offer, my husband and I opted for the Indian food at Tandoor, it was excellent. We are Caribbean people that like the food with flavor and a kick, not too spicy. The rest of the day we explored the ship, very nice decor and nice relaxing feel. We had the special privilege to have Guy Fieri on board the boat and he made a few appearances.
MDR, we had dinner in the Sapphire dining room, our waiters Anatoli, Dragomir and IPutu were awesome. I found the food to be a good temperature, we never felt rushed and the waiters were soo patient with my picky restless 4 yr old. They did magic tricks and made napkin animals to entertain him and the rest of the table, their food recommendations were spot on, never disliked what I was given.
Overall food was good in the MDR. Ate breakfast in the MDR, for DH and I do not like the chaos of Lido deck. I had a Guy Fieri burger once, it was a burger, good but not out of this world. I had the pizza, I've had better, Princess Cruise Lines' pizzas are way better. Red frog pub coconut shrimp and firecracker wings were good, conch fritters were not, conch was chewy and too much other stuff in the fritter like peppers and onions. Deli was good and was always open. Blue Iguana Cantina was great cannot complain. Did not try Pasta or Steakhouse restaurants. Chocolate extravaganza was fantastic, just not at a good time, they did this on a port day in the middle of the afternoon when nobody was on board. Punchliner brunch was different, but good food. Bar drinks had plenty of liquor not to strong or weak.
Room steward was great, shout out to Joey. Waiters like I said above were great. Other staff were accommodating, there were few rude staff and if they were I just ignored them and asked for someone else, I think that happened once.
Skycourse is a must try, it was scary for me because I'm afraid of heights, but worth it. You do have a little wait due to the kids that go round and round the course not being considerate to those in line.
Mini golf was not good, it's in the middle of other activities and people are contently on your course, passing through or not going through the courses in the proper order. The Mini golf was a nice idea but needs to be in a more private area.
Outdoor pool table and ping pong were always busy.
Outdoor exercise equipment was cool but again the kids overtook it and made it hard to be serious while using it.
Did not try the slide because they were either too busy or closed due to winds.
Pools were nice, not too crowded. We liked the Aft pool.
Like the Lanai Chess boards, helped pass time.
Gym was nice, got my workout in, just little small and hot when busy. Spa deck looked nice did not utilize it.
The shows in the Theater were a disaster; The music selections were good, but the singers need more practice or need to learn to project their voices, I could hardly hear the lyrics to the songs.
The lobby singer a blond sang some nice Spanish songs, and Consela and the Souljaz band were awesome, they should have sang at all the Theater shows. They did the last show "Motown" and it was great. "Divas" and "The Brits" were horrible. The British Invasion on Grand Princess was way better. The juggler was entertaining. The Comedians in the George Lopez Lounge were funny, but short.
Casino was addictive, DH and I do not gamble, we play lotto time to time, but some of the games were just so addictive and we swore that we could win, which did not happen, but we did meet a 22 yr old girl that won $1500 playing Wheel of Fortune(lucky her).
As I said I have a 4 and 13 yr old. My 4 yr old loved it, they offer dinner daily for the kids. On port days they can stay on the ship after breakfast all way till you return, offering lunch.
My 13 yr old went to Circle C and though he complained I never say him except for meals. He said that they never did what the schedule said, they partied and canceled activities to party instead and my son is not a dancing party person, he likes his dodge ball, soccer, basketball and video game time.
Ports of call:
Key West - We stopped in Key West in exchange for Grand Turk, due to the Gastroenteritis in Grand Turk. This was a pleasant stop due to I not visiting there in over ten years. I booked the cruise for Grand Turk and was bummed that we did not go. We took the Conch Train tour, which was expensive, but my 4 yr old wanted to go on the train. Learned a few things, overall an OK tour, not worth the price. Tried Conch fritters at some place that was recommended and they were awesome, Key lime pie anywhere was good, it's PIE!
Ocho Rios - We did our own tour with a cab driver and he was extremely expensive $120 for 2 hours for 4 people with no tip. He took us off the beaten path which was cool but again not worth the price. We saw two different waterfalls one on somebodies property that we had to give a donation for climbing and the other at the Ruins restaurant for another donation and another donation to view the gardens. Our driver to local restaurant for jerk chicken or pork and they ran out, he took us to local fish market for Fish fry, we bought fried tuna and me and my 13 yr old loved it. The Jamaicans are very pushy in your face, everyone looking for a dollar from your pocket. One kid did flips down the mountain in the rode in front of our cab, we had to give it up to him, he surly entertained, we were amazed. Others had crafts, pushing them in your face while driving in the cab. We had to let our driver to put the windows up and drive and we would let him know when we wanted something. Prepare for donations everywhere.
Nassau - This was a first for us and we found this to be the best deal for $75 for a 2 hour tour for 4 people. Our driver showed us the sites and gave us history and taught us about the culture and lifestyle of the Bahamas, shout out to Lennox. She showed us how to get conch out of the shells and how they are cooked, he took us to the fort and the Queen staircase, Paradise Island for a quick Atlantis peak. Just to go inside Atlantis was over $30, not even to use the facility. We played one quick game in the casino. Last stop was he dropped us at the beach and restaurants for Fish fry, the beach was not that nice, the water was beautiful, but the sand was grainy and stuck to you. Most of the shops were closed for Good Friday, but overall a nice stop.