1st Time Cruise
My husband and I just got back from a 4 day cruise in February, 2014, on the Carnival Sensation and we had no clue what to expect on the cruise. We have read good and bad reviews about the Sensation, but we thought that we should go with an open mind. I must say that we had a wonderful time on this cruise.
We drove down from Panama City Beach, and stayed at the LaQuinta Inn & Suites in Cocoa Beach. The room was all right, nothing to rave about and the Continental Breakfast was mediocre. We decided to leave our car at the terminal, because the cost was approximately the same price as leaving the car at the hotel. We also wanted the car at the terminal, so we could leave right away and not wait for the hotel bus to pick us up.
We arrived at the terminal early, so we left our luggage with the porter and took only our carry on with us. We did not have to wait long to get checked in and the guest service person explained everything to us. When our number was called to proceed to the ship, the embarkation went really quickly. The staff was very friendly and informed us when we could go to our room and that our luggage might be there at that time. Then they directed us to the Lido where we can have some lunch. Of course when you step onto the Lido deck the bar staff was there right away to offer you a specialty drink, mind you that it was not free.
Our cabin was on Main Deck, M25 which is the Inside Cabin. We knew that the cabin was not that big, but we are only there to sleep in. There are 2 closet spaces with a safe inside one, which I liked. There is also a make up dresser with drawers (more storage) and a large mirror with florescent lights. The bathroom was not that big, but it was stocked well. I brought with us a digital clock and an extra plug.
Since we have never been to the Bahamas, we decided to do the Shore Excursions for Freeport and Nassau. We were a little disappointed with the Freeport excursion and it was not worth the price. The Nassau excursion was worth going to.
Freeport, we did the City and Garden of the Groves tour. When we disembarked at the port, it was total confusion. There is no signage to let you know where to go to get to your excursion. Once we found our bus and tour guide we still had to wait for everyone so that meant we did not leave on time. I don’t recall seeing much of the city, and the Botanical Garden was pretty, but the downfall was we did not get stay very long, before you knew it we were back at the port boarding the ship. The tour guide was knowledgeable.
Nassau, we did the City and Atlantis Resort tour. Disembarking was simple and easy. There was someone there to meet you and take you directly to the bus. Our tour guide explained the city, on our way to the first stop, Fort Nassau and a market place. The view from Fort Nassau was awesome, once we where finished there we drove more threw the city until we got to Atlantis Resort. We stayed at the resort for about an hour. We decided not to stay at the resort, instead we toured around the area and what a beautiful place. You could not of asked for a better tour guide, and he was funny and informative. This excursion was worth the money. If you have time before boarding the ship, you must go to Senor Frogs. This place is something else to see.
We found the crew very helpful, friendly and willing to help you. Our room steward, Madi was tops. When he found out that we brought a bottle of wine, he placed the wine in a bucket of ice, while we were out of the room and every morning and evening we had fresh ice. He always stocked up the bathroom during the day and at night. When we returned to our room late evening our bed was turned down with a chocolates on each of the pillows and an animal done with towels. We were so lucky in having Madi as our room steward.
Then there was Edward, the bar stewart who only approached us when we required a drink. He seemed to be there just when you needed him. We found the other bar stewarts constantly bothering you for drinks, which can get annoying.
We had dinner at the Ecstasy Dining Room and John our Head Waiter, not only did our table of 10, he also had 3 more tables of 10. The following night John remembered every ones name at our table and this was his second night serving us. He was very accommodating and he had a sense of humor, very prompt and well organized.
We found the food really good. Did not matter if we ate in the dining room, Lido deck, Seaview Bar & Grill.
We did not get involved in any of the activities, since we were aboard doing the excursion and when we returned we just relaxed and soaked up the sun on the Lido deck before dinner. We were disappointed because every time we wanted to spend some time in the Serentiy area (adults only) it was always packed. My husband enjoyed the 300 foot waterslide and if there was a line up it was very short. There was always different entertainment every night going on, so you had lots to choose from.
You have a choice when it came to your luggage on disembarking day.
You can either take your own luggage or place the luggage outside your room. We opt in taking our own luggage, this way we did not have to wait until they called our deck and than wait for the luggage.
In summary we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves and we definitively would cruise again with Carnival.