Carnival Spirit was my 8th cruise but my first as an "adult" onboard. I went with my boyfriend and another couple. We were 21 and 23. It was my boyfriends first cruise. I knew I would love it but I was a little worried to see whether my boyfriend would. He did... we absolutely loved it and less then a fortnight after we had disembarked we had another cruise booked!!
Embarkation day: We were on the ship by 12pm. We had lunch at the buffet. Our room was ready straight away. We had a lovely day in Sydney too which made it extra nice! We had dinner in the main dining room on the first night and went to the late show.
The first two days out of Sydney were cool but warm enough to enjoy the ship. We were lucky the whole voyage which great weather (especially as it was winter in Sydney!). The first morning we had breakfast in the main dining room and the second morning we had room service.
The second night we had the State of Origin on a live feed in the show lounge. The big NRL fan's on the ship were very impressed. It was a fun night. They split the show lounge into QLD and NSW and gave each side red/blue glow sticks. After the footy we went to the Piano Bar. I think we may have gone here every night actually. It was so much fun signing along to old and new songs. We had an absolute ball every night!
From the third day onwards we went to Isle of Pines, Mystery Island, Villa, Santo and Wala. We were very lucky and had great weather at each port. Having been on a couple South Pacific cruises previously I did not pre book tours. In fact I found that each port had the same tours the cruise line offered for half the price.
Day 3: Isle of Pines
Isle of Pines was a little windy. We only spent half the day at the port as it was too cold to lie on the beach. The locals put on a nice dance ceremony for everyone which was very fun to watch. We had a really fun day after the port. We tendered back on the ship for a late lunch in the buffet again and spent the rest of the day sun baking on the serenity deck and in the spa. We didn't find it as windy on the ship which was great. We also tested out both the slides today which was very fun! Everyone at all ages must have a go on both of them!
We had a lazy afternoon laying in one of the pods and watched the ship sale away from Isle of Pines.
Dinner was at the main dining room again. The show this evening was the hypnotist. It was hilarious. We were sceptics so we went to both shows as we wanted to compare. We popped into the early show, were super impressed and then had a quick dinner so we could make it to the late show. In the late show my boyfriend went up on stage and the hypnotist actually worked! It was hilarious. It 100% worked.. somehow!!!
Day 4: Mystery Island
Today was much warmer. We all got a bit too much sun but had an amazing day. The snorkelling was fantastic. We went to both sides of the island. We also had a look around the little markets and spent time with the local kids.
We also played mini golf on the top deck just before the ship sailed away.
This night was our friend’s birthday. We went to the Nouveau restaurant. It is definitely worth going. The meals and deserts were sensational.
Day 5: Port Villa
We went to the Cascade Waterfalls. We didn’t book a tour with the ship, we just went onto the dock and had lots of people offering to take us there. There was a government building near the entrance to the town which had a display on the window for how much we should pay the locals to take us to each of the tourist destinations. Much cheaper to do it this way - but if you don’t get back, the ship will sail off…! So it is a gamble. We met a man who drove us and picked us up a couple hours later.
Was a good day. Was fun and beautiful. Bit of a walk into the waterfalls thought. From memory I think it cost $25 entry each.
In town is also a very good and popular place to do duty free shopping. You can’t take the alcohol back onboard with you, you get it when you get back into Sydney.
Day 6: Santo
We had a little problem the night before.. Too many cocktails and too late a night meant that we only got off the ship for five minutes..! Unfortunately we wasted the day at the port but had fun on the ship anyway. I think it was the hottest day yet. We heard the Blue Lagoon was amazing. Again that could be bought on the pier for half the price.
Day 7: Wala - FAVOURITE DAY!
I woke up early this morning to a little bit of discomfort. About two months prior to sailing I snapped my ACL while playing netball so had to have a knee reconstruction. Luckily though for me, there was a fantastic gym on board that I could go to to give my knee some exercise and stretching. It was very good. A cleaning lady was picking up all the towels and wiping down the machines at all times. There was also a personal trainer who I think made exercise plans and diets for clients. The music was also good, not to mention the view!
After the gym, had some break and went straight onto the Island to discover Wala. I had never been here so was very keen to go and explore. Wala is beautiful and was my favourite island by far.
We were lucky to get great weather again. The beach was beautiful, the ship was very close. A great photo opportunity! The locals had lots of little stores set up. The girls drank some coconuts and the boys drank some kava..! We had a little massage and went on a tour around the local village. We also went out in a little boat to go to a secluded area to snorkel.
Seventh night was our Mexican night. Not enough people dressed up. I think Carnival should advise the guests on book the themes as everyone missed the ‘Caribbean Night’ which was on the second night.. The only good thing about the theme this night was that we had Mexican food which was delicious. So delicious that we all had two mains and two entrées!!!
Day 8: Sea Day
The smoothest sea day EVER! Spent majority of the day on our balcony.
We had the ice carving demonstration today which was fun to watch on deck.
We had the formal night tonight. Lots of people got dressed up which was nice compared to the theme nights. In the dining room this night the wait staff had a song and dance which was very entertaining.
We also went to the night club for the first time. It was full of the younger teens but it was very fun still.
On the last day, disembarkation was too quick! I didn't want to get off. But it was very smooth for people who had to get flights elsewhere.
Overall, we had an amazing holiday.
- Food used to be better. It was lacking a little but the staff onboard make up for it with there great attitudes.
- Drinks are very expensive. A drinks package would be more appropriate for guests.
- Entertainment could be improved.
- Needs more activities during the day.
- Bingo can get VERY expensive..
- Photos looked so good but were very expensive.
- bring a power board so you can charge numerous things at once.
- bring drink bottles with a wide neck, fill them up with ice and take them on shore. The ice will eventually melt and you will have lovely cold water all day.
Would love to go on another Carnival cruise in Australia. It is a shame that the Legend will be almost identical to the Spirit. I probably won't sail on an identical ship though.