This was a first time cruise for both my husband and myself. We went with another couple, friends who have been on one cruise before this one. I may not have anything to compare it to, but I really had very little to no complaints! We had a fabulous time!
Embarkation- If you can, definitely get the faster to fun pass! Just $50 covered both people in the cabin and we bypassed all the lines getting on and off the ship, even to get off for ports. It was well worth it. Very easy and we were on the boat quickly and eating lunch. Debarkation was pretty fast and easy too. We live about 4 hours from the port and it was an easy drive. We were off the boat early enough on debarkation day that we stopped in Savannah, GA for lunch on the way home.
We got a balcony room and I am so glad we did...I left the door open every evening when I was getting ready for dinner and felt the breeze and watched the blue water. I loved looking over at sun setting. We even saw a sea turtle and dolphins go by us on the balcony! The room had enough space and I slept great. My only complaint about the room was you could hear so much noise in the hallway and next door, but I wasn't sure if that was just loud neighbors or thin walls. At least it quieted down by bedtime. Our room steward was wonderful. He called us by name every time he saw us and immediately got us everything we needed anytime we asked.
Everyone on the ship was so friendly and accommodating. I also thought the boat looked very clean and up to date. The gym and spa was actually very modern and pretty. I went to gym every day because I had such a great view of the ocean every time I got on the treadmill! My husband and I got a couples massage, it was just ok, don't know if it was worth the money and didn't love how the therapist tried to upsell us during the massage and after.
We thought we would run into bad weather but it turned out great. We had rain the morning of Nassau but it cleared up by lunch and I only felt the boat move the first night but it wasn't enough to make me feel sick. We spent a lot of time on the Serenity Deck on really comfy lounge chairs with a fruity drink in our hands :) Our friends loved the casino and our friend won $600 bingo, 3 free pieces of art and a free bracelet! The pool area is loud but that was fun. My complaint about the pool area is how small it is. People were literally packed in and it just seemed way too small for the amount of people on the ship. We went to the guest talent show and a few comedy shows. I loved the talent show and liked the comedy (although one of the 18 and older ones was too raunchy for me). I absolutely loved the cruise director, George. He was so funny and lively and I love his accent...he made the shows great and I never got tired of hearing his voice! I like how the cruise channel on tv would replay some of the fun things on the ship that day incase you missed it.
I was pleasantly surprised by the food. The hamburgers and hotdogs weren't anything special but the Mongolian Wok was great and worth the wait! Breakfast was hot and plenty or on the mornings we woke up later we could just grab a banana and Danish. We loved the food in the Imagination Dining Room...we ate there every night for dinner and loved everything except for the lobster bisque (which our wonderful waiter switched out very quickly). I especially loved the tilapia, blackened chicken with pineapple sauce, crab cakes, stuffed mushrooms....and of course...the chocolate melting cake!! I got that 4 out of 5 nights! I was really disappointed in the breakfast in the Sensation Dining Room though. My turkey bacon looked like beggin strips and was so hard to chew, and the waffles were cold. My only real complaint about the food though.
As for the ports, I could have done without Nassau. We went snorkeling in the morning but were disappointed by how little time we actually got in the water and wish we would have just done at your leisure snorkeling at our other stop. We mostly just shopped and ate lunch at Senor Frogs at Nassau. We were a little concerned for some younger passengers at Senor Frogs, since the legal drinking age was 18 there they were taking full advantage and going too far.
We loved Little Stirrup Cay. Beautiful white sandy beaches, beautiful water, plenty of spots to sit and relax but a lot of activities as well. Ate lunch at the Caribbean buffet the ship put out so we stayed on the island as long as we could. Carnival should really look into staying at this port longer rather than Nassau.
Overall, we really enjoyed our vacation on the Fascination and would recommend this to anyone!