Carnival Pride Cruise Review by first-time cruiser: Carnival Pride - Mexican Riviera
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Carnival Pride - Mexican Riviera
Saturday Oct. 7th, 2006
My boyfriend (27) and I (26) live in San Diego; we drove up to Long Beach around 5 pm to the Coast Long Beach Hotel. I HIGHLY recommend this hotel for anyone going on the cruise. I was a nice hotel, right on the water, directly next to the Queen Mary (where the Pride docks behind). They have rates that include shuttle to and from the boat, breakfast, parking for the entire week and a nice room (tax included). For a Bay view with balcony (where you can see the boat dock) it was $195, however for a garden view it was $175. They also have free shuttle service to a nice area which has bars, restaurants, clubs and shops. Nice area to spend a few hours in, we ate at Bubba Gump's and enjoyed our meal, a cute place. A few other places I noticed in the area but I am sure I am forgetting several, there was PF Changs, Islands, CPK Pizza, Rock Bottom Brewery, there was also a movie theater, arcade and ice cream parlor. We had a late dinner, walked around a bit More and was back at the hotel around 11, walked around down by the water a bit and back in the room by midnight. This area of Long Beach is very pleasant, a few minutes in other directions not so nice, but I felt perfectly safe where we were and thought it was very pretty.
Sunday Oct. 8th, 2006
We woke up around 8, immediately went out to the balcony to check out the Pride, she was so gorgeous, we laughed about looking at the Queen Mary the night before and wondering if our boat would be bigger the Queen Mary looked like a toy boat in comparison to how HUGE the Pride is and so pretty. We went and had breakfast around 9, typical continental breakfast eggs, cereal, toast, juice, coffee, hash browns, bacon etc. Nothing wrong with it, and nothing spectacular either. We took the shuttle over right about 10:15 went and utilized early check in, I HIGHLY recommend early check in for anyone who can take advance of the service. We waited in a very short line in the dome, got our docs checked, our cards and then bummed around the Queen Mary for a few minutes. We went back outside, browsed the few shops, got a beer and got in the early line; it was probably 11:30 by this time. The line was moving by 11:50, and we were on the boat by 12. When we stepped on boat I was blown away, it was so beautiful. Yes nudes were threw out the boat but all tastefully done I loved the detail, the lights, and the atrium and glass elevators really made it so gorgeous. We then headed to our room, 6220 on the express deck, a great room, quiet, extended balcony. The rooms are very efficient; there was plenty of room for us two, able room in the closets and drawers along with the bathroom. Got a basket of goodies, toothpaste, gum, razors, lotion, hair products etc. Our room was ready when we arrived so we dropped off our luggage and headed up to the Lido deck. We both got DOD's, which were good, I am not a big Rum drinker and most of the DOD's had rum in them but they were very good all the same. We sat and drank our drinks, then got a bite to eat. I had a cheese burger, potato salad and french fries. Michael had a steak sandwich. The buffet was also open but we were full afterwards and didn't try anything. We then made our way to the dining hall, which had a closed sign, but we asked to see our table and they allowed us to no problem. We were at table 294 which was a table of 6 in the captains club by the window. We were happy with the table at the time, liking that the smaller room would be a lot quieter then the main area but we later wished we were in the main area because when they call show time, we missed all the action and just heard the festivities. We then started exploring the boat, took a bunch of pictures because there were not too many people on board yet. We went up to the spa, made our appointments, I scheduled the hot rock message for Tuesday and Michael scheduled a teeth whitening service. Then we kept walking and taking pics, went and made our David's reservation also. The boat started to get really crowded around 2. Around 4 they then called muster drill so we headed back to our rooms to get our life jackets. The muster drill was short and sweet, but I have to say not all that informative, other then telling you how to tighten your jackets, they didn't say much else. We returned to our rooms to drop off our jackets, our bags had arrived I began to unpack, only to suddenly realize we were already sailing. We had intended to go up to the Lido deck for sailing but missed the boat completely on that one. So we finished our unpacking and hit the sushi bar&it was good, a different selection each day and they prepare it right there in front of you, there were about 5 options daily. They sell Sake which they sell in glass, craft and bottle sizes. A warning, in most sushi restaurants when you order a bottle of sake its just the size of a large beer bottle, not the case on the ship it's the size of a wine bottle, so we met a few people and shared our sake. We had late seating and by now it was about 7, so we headed up to change and freshen up a bit. Dinner was at 8:15, we were seated with two honeymoon couples about our age, very nice people. For dinner that first night I had the sweet and sour shrimp (very good) and Michael had the Lamb (also very good). After dinner, we bummed around the boat, hit the karaoke bar, lots of people there, had a nice time but we don't do karaoke so we then headed to the piano bar, had a BLAST, the pianist/singer was AWESOME and the scene was going off, everyone singing, playing the tambourine etc&stayed there for a few hours. Then we were just checking out the casino with no intention of actually gambling, but Michael had a $10 bill in his pocket so just for fun we put it in the $0.25 slot and first pull hit $90. We ended up spending the remained of our evening in the casino, at the end of the night with Michael playing roulette and I sticking with the slots we walked away with $130. It was about 3 am by this point and we took a stroll along the upper decks and then back to our room, spent some time on the balcony and were asleep around 4 ish.
Monday Oct. 9, 2006
Woke up to room service at 9:45, just a light breakfast fruit, toast and coffee. We then headed up to the pool area and laid out for a while, both having our first drink of the day, bloody mary's. It was a bit chilly and not too many people up on deck, but by noon, the music was going, the place was packed and the sun was out in full force. They had the hairy chest contest, ice carving demonstration and it was a good way to spend the afternoon. We met another couple by the pool also from S. CA so we ended up hitting it off and spent the time at the pool together. We mostly sat in the shallow end of the pool, lots of kids running around and splashing, but it was still fun. After a long day in the sun and a new sunburn we made our way back to sushi and up to the room to watch the sunset and get ready for dinner. I had an appointment for an up do for my hair. My hair looked good but nothing spectacular, I could have done just as good, and it was done in 15 minutes and was a waste of the $45 in my opinion. Monday was the first formal dinner, we went to the captain's party prior to dinner, where you met the captain, and there were free drinks, live music, dancing and appetizers. The captain later introduced himself and the crew. Afterwards we took some formal photos and made our way to dinner. Meet the CD (Wee Jimmy) took some pics with him in his kilt, and then headed to dinner. I had two lobster tails and Michael had both the prime rib and the lobster tail. Dinner was excellent. After dinner we met up with our new friends, hit the midnight comedy show which was funny, Stanley Ullman a older gentleman and definitely for only adults, had some more casino time, and we all had pizza and ice cream at the end of the evening around 3 am. We then went back to the room, pleasantly surprised by our first towel animal, an elephant then just hung out on the balcony, ordered some cookies and milk and went to bed again around 4.
Tuesday Oct 10, 2006
Slept in this morning, got out of bed around noon, and went to the dining room lunch, both had ribs, they were very good, we then made our way back to the pool, met up with the other couple and started chatting with a third couple. We 6 hung out the rest of the trip. Spent some more time by the pool watched the survivor competition and chilled out to some good music. That afternoon we had our spa services. Michael had his teeth whitened, it was ok, I had advised against it but he wanted to do it, I don't think either of us would recommend the service. It was $195 and then they up sell you the follow up products for around $100. I on the other hand had the BEST message I have ever had. I get messages a few times a year but these hot rocks were awesome, really were able to get into your muscles with those rocks and I was so relaxed. They did not try and sell me on any products, I definitely recommend this message, it is pricey it was $175 but if you want to splurge on yourself this is a GREAT way to do it. I would do it again in a heart beat. After our services, we spent more time at the pool, went for sushi, back to the room to get ready for dinner at David's. I have to tell you, I was skeptical about David's, not that I didn't think it appeared to be nice, but that I couldn't comprehend how it could be THAT much nicer the regular dining room. I couldn't have been more wrong. It was one of the nicest dinners I have ever had, and I have been to some nice places. It's a step above right from the beginning. There is a dance floor, a wonderful singer and a pianist. They have their own kitchen. The table setting was gorgeous Versace china, fine linen etc&the service was spectacular, and I can't say enough about it. They came and showed you the meat, just an example of the differences between David's and regular dining, there are three types of water, three kinds of butter etc&.they started us with a small appetizer of salmon and soup, then we ordered the menu appetizers Michael had the sushi sampler which had 6 different types of sushi all terrific. I had the crap cake, very good. Then we had prepared Caeser salad right at the table, fresh croutons that were excellent. For our main course I had surf and turf with a lobster tail and filet mignon. It came with a side of which I had pasta and was served with ravioli and a veggie pastry. Michael had the veal shank (HUGE) and his was served with wasabi mashed potatoes and asparagus. The portions were much larger then the regular dining room. We had a great bottle of Riesling, reasonable priced. We were so full we decided to split desert, we had a chocolate desert that was basically three deserts in one, three separate to die for chocolate deserts, one a tiramisu, a hot chocolate cake one and the third was like a pastry. Even after that they brought out a tray of treats, pasticcio cookies and chocolate treats, so yummy. We left more full then we have ever been in our entire lives, but it was such a memorable dinner, good food, music, dancing and ambiance, so romantic. It was well worth the extra $30 and I would go again for sure. We intended to go back to the room (it was about 10) for a quick nap and make it up to the deck party at 11, but we were exhausted and crashed out for the night.
Wednesday Oct. 11, 2006
We woke up early to our room service, just coffee, cereal and toast. Room service was right on time every time we ordered. We were booked an early excursion. We had to meet at the dock at 9; we booked the EXTREME zip lines and let me tell you extreme doesn't do it justice. We got on a short ride to our Unimog (a truck like vehicle that was off road and we sat in the open air) the ride was a bit scary but beautiful as we went up into the mountains, waterfalls and lush rain forest along the way. We then got to their area, where we got a few minutes to freshen up with snacks provided. We got a quick safety lesson and headed off to our donkey ride up into the mountains. From there we zip lines over the most amazing views ever. I am afraid of heights and a big baby when it comes to these things, but once I got over the initial fear it was one of the most amazing things I have ever done. The regular zip lines were tree to tree over 70 ft. Ours was mountain to mountain 220 ft below. We zipped, did rope courses, and rappelled down two waterfalls, splashing into the water at the bottom. I will NEVER forget this day, they do not allow you to take your own pictures but they take pics along the way that you can purchase. One pic for $15 with discounts as you buy more then one, but they do not give you the pics right there, they will be sent to our house (lets hope) within two weeks. It was so awesome. They returned us to the boat at around 3; we went up to change and eat, then met up with the other couple and set out to bum around town a bit. We took a taxi to Senior Froggies and stayed there till about a half hour before we sailed. We had the time of our lives at Senior Froggies all 6 of us got wasted off our butts, shots after shots, yard drinks after yard, conga line shots after conga line shots, we all were dancing on stage and had the best time we took a taxi back to the boat, all had missed dinner so we went to get some food up on the Lido deck, we all had sandwiches and pizza&hung out a bit, we met up with our friends and watched the Who's line is it anyway show done by the crew, it was an adult show and hilarious, a great time, we hit up the casino a bit, but were back early to our rooms about 2 ish&ordered some BLT's relaxed a bit and were asleep by 3.
Thursday Oct 12, 2006
Woke up to room service, were both hung over, had to be at our excursion by 9, we went to Deer island for kayaking and snorkeling. This wasn't our favorite excursion&the snorkeling wasn't any good, very little visibility and few fish, and the kayaking was more of a guided tour then exploration on our own. The island was cool, you could rent SeaDoo's, there were wild dogs that hung around, snacks and drinks&but the trip was kind of boring and VERY hot. Afterwards you had the option to go over to the shopping district but we ended up coming back to the boat. We did stop at the shops near the boat and got a few souvenirs. We picked up some T-shirts, knick knacks and some Senior Froggie merchandise. We then went back on ship, took a nap till sushi time, had some sushi and got ready for dinner. Today the whole boat was decorated for Friday the 13th (even though it was only Thurs. the 12th, since Friday was a formal night, they did all the festivities tonight). It was really cute, they had a costume contest, activities for the kids, games, and they had an interactive movie where they did scary things while viewing Friday the 13th, they popped balloons behind you, scared you with water and fake spiders etc&Dinner even had special spooky desert. This was the first night that we watched the main show also, it was a production number with singing and dancing, not exactly my cup of tea but good for what it was, lots of props and costumes, a nice show. After both shows, we did some more gambling, drinking and just hanging out, were back in our rooms by 3:30 and sleep by 4.
Friday Oct 13, 2006
Woke up to beautiful views of Cabo, visited the dining room for our first sit down breakfast, had a great meal. I had french toast, a bagel, Danish and hash browns, Michael had a ham and cheese omelet and pancakes. We had to meet early for our excursion at 9. We took an hour catamaran ride, passed all the main attractions, lovers' beach etc, then headed off to Chilean Bay. There we snorkeled. It was the BEST snorkeling I have ever done. It was the bluest water in all of Mexico; water was so warm, 30 ft visibility, just breathtaking. We must have seen hundreds of fish, of all colors, shapes and sizes. They fed the fish bread and they just swarmed everywhere. There were coral all around and you could swim over to the beach to just chill if you wanted. There was even a waterslide off of the boat, it was a blast, unfortunately we couldn't stay long, it was the best place we stopped yet the shortest visit. We were back to the harbor at 12:30. We went to Cabo Wabo where we had lunch and a few drinks, Sammy was there doing a few free concerts for his bday that weekend. We had to leave though to head back to the ship, did some shopping along the way and were back on the Pride by 3:30 and we set sail at 4. Tonight was formal night, we took another nap before getting ready for dinner, and we met our friends early and went to the atrium for the spiffy martinis. They had all sorts of martinis that they poured down an ice sculpture into your glasses, super cool. We had dinner in which we asked and sat with our new friends, they just found us an open table, and it wasn't a problem at all. I had a shrimp dish and Michael had the prime rib again, both wonderful. After dinner we all attended the adult comedy show, it was funny and then did some more gambling. Our nightly pizza at 3 am, and back to the room asleep by 4.
Saturday Oct. 14, 2006
Sad sad day started to realize it was all coming to an end, but still made the most of our day. Had breakfast in the main dining room with our friends. Spent most of the afternoon reading, napping and just hanging out by the adult pool, no topless woman but no kids either so it was a great place to chill. Had the grill for lunch, chilly dogs with fries. Spent all afternoon there just relaxing and trying to take it all in. Went back to the room before dinner to pack, before dinner we met our friends at the Jazz bar and had two bottles of champagne and a Cuban cigar with our friends. All ate together again this night. After dinner when the dining staff sang and danced it almost brought a tear to my eye, since this was it, no more great meals, no more maid service, no more breakfast in bed watching the ocean After dinner we did a few Irish car bombs at the bar and headed off to the show, the show was really cute and funny. After the show we all hit the casino for the last time, I tried Roulette for my first time ever. I started with $75, I literally got down to my last $1 without winning one single time, but then I started hitting and hitting and hitting and after about 3 hours I left with $250 profit, was a super fun time and I would play again for sure&all went to the disco then, it was probably 2 something in the morning by then, nice place, fun but full of the 18 and 19 year olds trying really hard to be cool, so it got kind of lame and we just went up to get a snack and hang out, took a stroll up on deck for the last time, and off to sleep around 4:30.
Sunday Oct 15, 2006
Woke up early, had breakfast with our friends, all picked up some pics from the boat. We all elected to do self check out, highly recommended. The comedian did a show in the Taj Mahal while we all waited, they called for self check out by 9:30 and we were off the boat by 10 couldn't have been any simpler and faster. We said goodbye to our new friends, called the shuttle and was in our car driving home by 10:30.
Wee Jimmy was our CD, he was the BEST!!!! The cutest little Scottish guy who always was cracking jokes, smiling and telling everyone he loves them&just a riot, very lovable and a great time, the only reason I can see that someone wouldn't like him is just that he might be a bit offensive in his jokes, but assuming you have a good attitude and can take a joke you'll love him.
I completely over packed, way too much stuff, you just don't need to plan for much during the day, of my 24 pairs of shoes I probably wore 8 or so of them, especially if you utilize self check out since you have to carry your own bags, with the souvenirs we had like 8 bags and probably could have cut what I brought in half, try really hard not to over pack&.
It was the time of our lives; we will definitely cruise again, and wouldn't mind going on the Pride again although we want to try the Caribbean next. I was asked several times what was my favorite thing&and for me it was just having nothing specific we HAD to do and being able to do so much and yet whatever&Make the most of it and take tons of pics, I took a few hundred and still wish I had got more&
Anyway questions I would be happy to answer. Less
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