Sailed on the first trip after dry dock with 2.0 updates to the ship. It is an awesome ship! Highly recommend this ship! It was our first cruise ever and we learned a lot of things we wish we would have known ahead of time. I will try to include some of these here for other first time cruisers or first time to these ports.
Ft. Lauderdale- We stayed at the Rodeway Inn. Which had cheaper parking than the port garage plus provided shuttle to the port. That was way easier than driving in the morning we were to sail. They unload your luggage and then you walk inside the terminal. It was a breeze. Highly recommend. The hotel is older but pretty good rates very clean and continental breakfast is pretty good.
Carnival- Highly recommend the Faster to the Fun excursion through Carnival. Allows you to board right after the priority members we were in the first 100 people to board the ship! Also if you are at a tendering port you get priority tender times. You choose when you want to tender and they personally take you to the tender (way better than standing in line for a time). Guys Burger =Awesome!! Great shows lots of variety. Food is wonderful in the restaurant as well.
Cozumel- We found the best shopping and prices here of all of our ports. Very friendly and helpful people. Chose the $25 beginner snorkel from Carnival totally worth that price!! Highly recommend! If you want authentic Mexican ask a taxi driver to take you to La Choroza near Plaza del Sol. It was delicious! There is NO beach access at this port so if you want to see the beach better choose an excursion or research ahead of time where you would like to go.
Belize- Booked Lamani Myan Ruins through Island Marketing Ltd. awesome trip into the real country of Belize. They definitely are careful to get you back in time to board the tender. The Belizian lunch was delicious!! Beautiful ruins that you can climb! Again there is NO immediate beach area so definitely recommend an excursion for this port!
Roatan- Beautiful! If you plan to go the beach area at port go early! By afternoon it fills up and gets really crowded! There is good snorkeling if you walk down to the pier on the beach. Again a good place for an excursion if you don't want to swim at the beach. Beautiful water!!
Cayman- Our least favorite port! Unfriendly and unhelpful people. Very city like and Americanized. If you decide to go to 7 mile beach know that you will need to take a taxi and they only like to take groups of 4 or more so you have to stand around and wait. Bigger problem when you want to come back to port because they have passenger buses and don't like to take them without a crowd. There were 3 of us and we had to listen to the driver complain about not making enough money taking us back. Its definitely a resort area so be prepared for traffic and lots of hotels. If you go to 7 mile beach some areas are "free" but you will be asked to pay for your chair. We paid $7 per chair. If I could do it over I would have tried to go to a more private beach.
Hope this helps! If you have questions I will try to answer them!