This was our second trip with Carnival to the Eastern Caribbean but our first on the Carnival Dream. My husband and I booked this cruise only a month out from sailing, so we had a limited selection on which rooms were available. We were in balcony room 6440 directly above the Lanai deck on the port side (very low traffic on port side of the Lanai). We really enjoyed the room. We did come prepared and had a small fan with us, it helped big time to move the air in the room and cool it off. If you are cruising in July or August it’s going to be warm even with the AC on high. Although we both agreed it was disappointing we were unable to look directly down into the water, the “people-watching” was just as entertaining. (Please note if you are on the Lanai deck hanging out or in one of the hot-tubs, people in the rooms above can hear every word, and sound you make.) We didn't feel like our privacy was compromised in our room at all, people can’t see into your room More
from the Lanai, trust me we checked for ourselves!
We’re a couple in their early 30’s who don’t have kids. BUT we knew what we were getting into by booking a cruise in the middle of summer while school was out. People who find it surprising that there are kids running all around, at all times day, and was bothered by that, didn't exercise the best judgment when booking a Carnival “family” cruise in summer. Even with all kids running around there are a few places that Carnival has reserved for Adults Only. Our favorite place all week was the Serenity Adults Only Retreat. It offered nice chairs and loungers as well as its own hot-tubs. The staff were always watching for kids. We saw a few times that kids ran in, but they were quickly informed it was off limits to anyone under the age of 21.
Since this was our second cruise out of New Orleans with Carnival we knew what to expect. Knew where to go, where to drop off luggage, and where to park the car. Although parking took longer than the last few times at the Port this was due to their credit-card machines being down and passengers not expecting Cash Only. The lines to board were a lot slower than any of our previous cruises, this was due to the delay of allowing passengers on the ship because of “safety testing” Carnival was performing. Carnival emailed everyone a week in advance saying this was going to happen, so once again not surprised.
Key West was our first stop and although the weather was questionable most of the day, my husband and I still were able to enjoy the sightseeing and local flavors of island. There were many things to do close by the ship or within walking distance. Renting a bike or just walking strolling around is best way to explore the tourist areas of the island in a short amount of time. There are plenty of “tours” but nothing is like going at your own pace.
Freeport… Freeport… Freeport. If I never see that island again I would be happier person. The people are rude and there isn’t anything to do unless you take a 30 minute ride somewhere. The local “Straw Market” is a joke. The vendors are pushy (more than Mexico, and that is saying something) and they are very rude. The taxi drivers were worse. I’ll stop now because it just raises my blood-pressure thinking about it. My opinion, book a spa day on the ship and enjoy the quietness of an almost empty ship.
Nassau was great. The water there is amazing. We booked the Hilton British Colonial for a day pass. It was only $120 for both of us and we received $80 in food and drink passes. The beach was very clean, plenty of chairs, and the pool/bar area were well taken care of. We stayed in the water almost all day and saw plenty of fish and a few stingrays swimming past as we snorkeled.
The food overall was “okay”. But once again we acknowledge that they are trying to feed over 3,000 guest three times a day. You really can’t expect too much, but we were able to find something to eat each time. The Chef’s Steakhouse was amazing. We ate there three times. Well worth the extra money.
All-in-all we had a good vacation. The only thing we really found disappointing was the lack of variety of shows at night. We went to the comedy shows each night they had a new one and listened to a few musicians at the piano bar. My husband is a big fan of the casino and we enjoyed the comps from the “Player’s Club” almost every night. But even he pointed out that if there would have been more of a variety of things to do at night, he wouldn't have been in there so much. (I have my doubts, hahaha)
Just remember if you book a cruise in the summer expect a fed things to be guaranteed: hot weather, kids, overcrowded pools, not enough chairs on Sea Days, and the occasional unhappy cruiser next to you at the bar. Just smile. Sip your drink. And remember this is your vacation too! Less
We were in balcony room 6440 directly above the Lanai deck on the port side (very low traffic on port side of the Lanai). We really enjoyed the room. We did come prepared and had a small fan with us, it helped big time to move the air in the room and cool it off. If you are cruising in July or August it’s going to be warm even with the AC on high so be prepared. Although we both agreed it was disappointing we were unable to look directly down into the water, the “people-watching” was just as entertaining. We didn't feel like our privacy was compromised in our room at all, people can’t see into your room from the Lanai, trust me we checked for ourselves!Also at night we found that you could hear the bass from the deck below it wasn't so bad we couldn't sleep. My suggestion is if you are a light sleeper, bring some ear plugs.