We were travelling with our family of 15 who are from 5-65 yrs old. This was our second family cruise-the other being Disney four years ago. We, the grand-parents, have taken about 15 cruises on various lines. We stayed the night before the cruise at the Holiday Inn Express Air/Seaport because of the free shuttle to the port and from the airport. The shuttle picks you up at a central location outside of the terminal, which we found to be a pain, in Boston they pick you up outside the door of the terminal, so the hot walk , and the long wait for the bus was not expected. Our son chose to take a cab with his family. There would not have been room for them in the bus anyway. Good choice on his part.-cab was 15.00 incl tip. The HI was very clean and the beds comfortable. We all spent the evening in the warm pool, which we enjoyed. Some walked to Wendys and some of us went to the Heidelberg- if you like German food you'll like this. The next morning we ate at the HI-the usual free breakfast offerings. The line for the shuttle was not organized-I think they should give out numbers. There was a huge number of people going to two different ships. I have no idea how it would have played out as we opted to call a large van which took us all directly to the port. It took us about 45 minutes to board and we headed to the back for burgers, which were good, and the fries-yummo. We got into our cabins at 1 o'clock, My hubby and I had an inside room which was very comfortable and the decor was nice-after seeing the decor of the public rooms I was afraid to see what the cabins would look like,it was a pleasant surprise. The bathroom was bigger than on some ships, and of course new. They must have known I was old as there were several lotions to firm up the face in the amenity basket. Our cabin was always kept up by the steward, who we saw only twice in 6 days. We had no interaction with him at all, it's a shame, we always enjoy meeting and getting to know our steward. Our kids and grand-kids had veranda rooms which were larger than the inside and had plenty of storage and a large sofa/bunk-bed in the cabin for 4. We found the veranda to be a tad narrow, but they weren't out there much. The 10& 11 yr olds did some C.C. things, but the girls enjoyed the karaoke the best,they did the build-a-bear and an evening event. We brought games and played with them. We watched some of the movies on deck, it was so pleasant out on deck I could have slept there. One of the things that was the most fun was the "Family water wars" The surprising thing about this ship was that we had a problem getting drinks. I guess that with so many people there aren't enough waiters-We have been bothered by the waitstaff more on Celebrity ships to buy drinks-this was the opposite. Even in the dining room we had to chase down the beverage server. Our waiter was trying very hard to please, but I think his assistant was an anchor around his neck-never seemed to know what was needed. On the whole the food was good-but never more than luke-warm. The little ones enjoyed the tricks the waiter did for them each night. They even wrote him a card to thank him, and told him he was the greatest. Most of us never ate at the buffet-the room was the ugliest I have ever seen-I found it to be not conducive to a pleasant mealtime, with the lines and noise. The man who designed it is world famous-I think it is a case of "The Emperor's New Clothes"-no one had the nerve to tell him it is ugly. The Deli was fabulous, and the fish and chips gross, the burgers good. We saw four shows, the best being the comedian Jack Brick ( I think) The kids loved the production numbers and the juggler. On port days most of us went to the beach, we took cabs and rented chairs and had a great time in the water and building sand castles. My daughter brought inflatable tubes which were a godsend and lots of fun. In Costa Maya some did the clear kayaks, and they stopped at the same beach we were sitting on-by coincidence, and when they saw us lounging on the sand they didn't want to kayak back. To each his own. They also did the snorkel and stingrays which they liked,but in the snorkel part the water was choppy. Normally we wait until the last gun is fired before disembarking but we had a 1pm flight home and I was afraid we wouldn't make it, so we lined up like cattle to be herded off the ship. In summary, and I bet you can guess, I wouldn't book a Carnival cruise again on such a big ship- we have taken the Destiny and Triumph when they were new and loved those. But not on school vacation. This ship is too large to give good service and have room for everyone in the pools (We called it "Human Soup")etc.I was not disappointed because I expected this, I wanted the kids to have fun, and they did, but not where I thought they would. I think they only used the slide about 5 times each, and that was one of the reasons for booking this ship and the camp was hardly utilized. I know this is hard to believe but we had a fabulous time on our family vacation. I just wanted to give an honest assessment.