After having had a bad experience on the Carnival Splendor we were hesitant to try Carnival again, but it was the only cruise company going to St. Lucia at the time we wanted to be there. We decided to give them another chance so along with our best friends we booked on the Carnival Valor. I have to say I am glad we did. This time we were very happy with Carnival. Our room was very nice and the housekeeping team were so pleasant and ready for anything we needed. It was our anniversary while on the ship and our friends asked them to hand banners up and they did and then congratulated us on our anniversary.
The decor on the ship was very nice, so much better than the Splendor. The food was also excellent. We ate in the restaurant for breakfast (it was good but the staff needed a bit more training as they did get our orders wrong quite a few days), at lunch we enjoyed the deli, sandwiches were always so good. Dinner was in the Washington Dinning Room and the service was excellent. They went out of their way to make us enjoy our meals. We also enjoyed the shooter drinks after dinner and were happy to bring quite a few shooter glasses home. The night of our anniversary our friends arranged for a bottle of sparkling wine, chocolate strawberries and a rose to be at our table. We got there and were so surprised. The servers all came around and congratulated us and sang to us.
We enjoyed all the ports except for Barbados. It seemed that there wasn't much to do or see at this port and we didn't get a comfortable feeling walking around. In St Thomas there is just shopping and more shopping. St. Lucia was so lush and green. We did walk into Castries which is about 20 minutes from the ship. They had a great market there which sold spices, wood carvings and clothing. We did purchase a few items and everyone was so friendly. We did take an excursion from Carnival (Beautiful Scenes of St. Lucia) and really enjoyed the views from the different parts of the island. Would recommend this excursion. In St. Kitts we walked to the downtown which took 10 minutes. Not a lot to do but it was nice to get out and see part of the town. Lots of shopping can be done right where the ship docks. St. Maarten had the most beautiful white sand beaches. Again we walked into town which took about 20 minutes. You can also walk along the beach and enjoy a drink right there. On this island we also took a Carnival excursion which took us from the Dutch side of the island to the French side. It was a very informative trip and we liked seeing the different in the two parts of the island. Our tour guide Raffaele was very knowledgeable and funny.
Once we got back to San Juan we had some time before we were to catch our plane so we left our bags at Aloha Bar which is right across the street from the pier. They charge $3.00 per bag and hold them all day. We walked around Old San Juan and then returned to the Aloha Bar for lunch and took a cab to the airport.
I would recommend this cruise, it was relaxing, fun and worth the money.