Carnival Victory 8/16/07 4 night cruise to Canada Cast- Family of 4- two girls- 9-11 years old Traveled with sister's family of four, and wife's parents for a total of 10.
Have sailed on Carnival Festivale, Disney Magic and Norwegian Spirit previously.
Embarkation: Arrived at noon. We hired a van to drive us to the pier from Rockland county. I think next time we will drive down and park. Took a while to get on board. The computers that take your photo id were down for at least 15 minutes.
St. John's: Enjoyable day. Not foggy, but not exactly clear. Did not do any planned excursions. There was a group to welcome us- flowers for the ladies, pins for the men and flags for the children. Maps and information were made available. We knew we were in a friendly land. Went to Market Square and the New Brunswick museum in the morning. Very nice museum- 1-2 hours of stuff to see. Went to the bigger Brunswick mall near that one- found a dollar store- nice for cheap souvenirs and a post office in the drugstore. Went back to the ship for lunch. In the afternoon- walked to the reversing falls. A solid walk for our family of four- the rain was on and off. The view was pretty neat. Took a city bus back to the ship. Seemed like the weather cleared up as the ship departed port.
Dining: We enjoyed the dining experience. We like having a fixed time to meet over the freestyle Norwegian experience (which was waiting in line). Nothing was returned. Great service from our server Martinique- who seemed to be working alone. Plenty to choose from. Looked forward to the deserts. Went to the buffet 2-3 times. Heard good things about the midnight buffet- but we did not go ourselves. Never had trouble finding a table. The steaks were always done well- especially the prime rib on the last night. Then again if we do go out- it's Olive Garden.
Entertainment: Plenty of activities to choose from. The theatre is well done. The shows were good, but really enjoyed the Vroom show- just over the top. Malcolm the cruise director did a great job with the silent film comedy skit. The pool water was cold- kids went on a slide a couple of times just to say they went on it. The game room had games available for only 2 hours a day- so bring your own board games/ cards if that is something you want to do. Beware- most activities get taped for the DVD.
Children activities: The children participated in several activities including the children's talent show. No complaints from the kids. My nephew and niece signed up for the slumber party from 10PM to 3AM and had a very good time.
Cabin- Level 7 inside. Room always in great shape. If you do want towel animals- I recommend leaving a few dollars every night for the room steward. Mostly quite. Some engine humming. Would have liked another chair to sit down. Had one chair and the bed to sit on. Some rowdy kids at night- but the noise usually did not last long. I would expect level 7 has the least amount of traffic. Levels 3,4,5 are messy for getting around- stuck to the advice given previously- use level 2 and 6 to get across. Carnival could do a better job with directions and signage.
Weather- generally on the cooler side- but it was cooler all around the northeast at this time. Summer left early? There were some drizzles here and there. The last day at sea was very nice and the lounge chairs were all taken. I do not mind the cooler weather. But I guess if you were expecting to get a nice tan on this cruise- you would have been disappointed.
Debarkation: No issues- we were in no hurry to get off. They seemed to start letting the self service folks off at 7:45 am. Most were off the ship by 10 to 10:15am.
Overall: We really enjoyed this cruise. We definitely got great service, good food and good entertainment and activities- overall a great value. Carnival had their act together on this cruise. We would definitely go back (though the consensus might be someplace warmer.) And my sister, who is a good shopper, can't wait to go back (it was her first cruise). 4 nights is just about right- even 6 nights seems like too much cruise. This opinion might be biased by the fact we got a good deal for this cruise- booked early, got a 3 grade upgrade, and got money off since we sailed before.