This was my family's first cruise. Our group consisted of myself (34), my husband (34), my daughter (6), my young son (17 months), my MIL (54), and a friend of hers (~56). We had oceanview cabins 1160 and 1164 on the Riviera deck. I must admit that I was pleasantly surprised at the size of our cabin. Considering that there would be two adults and two small children in our room, we didn't feel cramped at all. There was plenty of storage space and the bathroom was a decent size. My daughter loved that the window had a little ledge that she could sit on and look out at the ocean.
After dropping off our luggage, we went up to the Lido deck and had lunch. It was a little chaotic up there but we finally found a seat. The food was pretty good, not great, but we all enjoyed what we got. I am not a huge fan of buffets, so we only ate on the Lido deck for breakfast and during sea days at lunch. We always ate in the dining room at dinner. Food in the dining room was wonderful on some nights (the lobster and the jumbo shrimp) and just okay on others (the steaks). However, dessert was always very, very good. My favorite was the crème brulee (sooo good!), the Bitter and Blanc bread pudding, and the popular chocolate melting cake. We had a table for six by the window (# 369) and our servers were Dewa ("Big D") and Iwayan. They were just awesome! One of my daughter's favorite times of the day was after dinner when we would go back to our room and see which towel animal our room steward (Joaquim) had left for her. Joaquim was great...he straightened/cleaned our room several times a day and we never wanted for ice, fresh towels, etc. He was also very accommodating when I had any requests.
Grand Cayman - This was my favorite day of the whole cruise. As we tendered into this port, there was a rain cloud off in the distance and we looked up and there was a double rainbow in the sky. It was beautiful. ? We had booked a stingray city and snorkel excursion through Moby Dick tours (they were great!). Their website is www.mobydicktours.com. We met the Moby Dick representative at the pier. We then took a bus ride from the port to the yacht club (saw a few iguanas on the way) and then got onto the Moby Dick boat. As we approached the stingray sandbar, there were several boats already there. Our tour guides decided that we would go do the snorkeling part of our excursion first and then come back to the sandbar after some other groups left. The snorkeling was fantastic. We saw a wide variety of fish and the Moby Dick guides were out in the water with us pointing out different things and helping people out when they needed it. After snorkeling for about 30-40 minutes, we all got back on the boat and went over to the stingray sandbar. It was wild. My daughter freaked out a little at first and I had to take her back to the boat, but after she watched everyone for a few minutes, she got brave enough to get back in the water. I would recommend this excursion to anyone...we had a wonderful time.
Cozumel - We took a cab to Paradise Beach and spent most of the day there. They don't charge to get in, but they ask that you buy food/drink while you are there. It does cost $9 for a bracelet that gives you all day access to the water toys (kayaks, trampoline, etc.). It was fine...not the nicest beach I've ever been too, but we enjoyed our day. DH and DD had fun on the water toys and I enjoyed the floating mat out in the water. I would suggest bringing some water shoes here... it is quite rocky under the water. We ate homemade guacamole and chips for lunch (yummy!) and enjoyed some pina coladas. DD and I also went and got henna tattoos for $10 each. We left around 2:30pm and headed back to San Miguel for a little shopping. We got some good deals once we got about a block off of the waterfront.
Belize - About 2 hours out of Cozumel we had to turn back due to a medical emergency, so that put us a little late getting to Belize. The tendering process to Belize was pretty aggravating...Carnival needs to find a way to improve that system. We were on a Carnival tour (Altun Ha / River Wallace excursion) and it took us about an hour to get off the boat. Anyway, the excursion itself was nice. We had a good tour guide and we took nice air conditioned buses to Altun Ha. (It was a very HOT day in Belize.) We spent about 30-40 minutes at Altun Ha and then got back on the bus and went to a small riverside resort where we had lunch. After lunch, we got on a boat and took a cruise down the river. We saw monkeys, bats, lots of iguanas, and a couple crocodiles on the trip. My DD said that it was one of her favorite activities of the whole week. Our DS, on the other hand, didn't tolerate the heat well and he was pretty miserable the whole day.
Roatan - This was my 2nd favorite port (though we didn't have a lot of time here). We had pre-booked an island tour with Victor Bodden tours. We had Victor's brother, William, as our guide for the day. We did some sightseeing around the island (saw shipwrecks, scenic overlooks, etc, but also lots of poverty - so be prepared) and then we went to Victor's house to see the monkeys, parrots, etc. William then took us for an early lunch in West Bay and we had some delicious coconut shrimp and DH had wonderful lobster kabobs. I don't know the name of the restaurant, but they had a covered dining area out over the water and it was so pretty. After lunch we did some snorkeling in the water adjacent to the restaurant...it was amazing!! The coral was vibrantly colored and we saw countless fish and other sea life. After snorkeling we drove back to the pier (we had to be back on board by 2:30). We had a great day and would love to come back to Roatan in the future. If you are thinking about booking a tour with Victor Bodden, I would recommend it. They charged $25/person for the entire day (except our toddler was free) and they customized the day for our interests. Their website is www.boddentours.com if you are interested.
Sea days -- We didn't do a whole lot during our days at sea. My daughter usually went to Camp Carnival. She really enjoyed her time there and thought the counselors were really nice. She made a T-shirt one day, stuffed her own teddy bear (costs extra), went on a scavenger hunt, played board games, etc.
We didn't spend much time in the pools because they were too crowded. I can't believe that a ship this size has such small pools...you could only have about 25 people in there without being on top of each other. However, DH and DD enjoyed the water slide and it never seemed that crowded. One word of caution about the lido deck around the pool areas...it gets extremely slick - I saw no less than 3 people in 1 hour fall down from just walking in the area.
As far as the shows go, all of the ones I went to were pretty good. I especially enjoyed the one they had on the 1st day at sea. However, I will say that I thought the two leading male singers were not good at all. The female leads were soooo much better. The dancers were really good...I don't know how they change costumes so quickly - it must be exhausting. ? I didn't go to the hypnotist show, but that seemed to be a favorite of most people I spoke to.
We didn't go to the casino or to any of the dance clubs so I can't comment on those. We did go to karaoke a couple times and enjoyed ourselves.
One of my biggest complaints on this ship was that there was absolutely nothing to do with our toddler. There is no playroom where we could take him, there is no playground, he couldn't get in any of the pools (even the kiddie pool), etc. It would have been nice to at least have a playroom where parents could go w/their young children and let them use up some energy. And even though our toddler did pretty well on this cruise, I don't think I would take another cruise on this ship w/a young child.
Overall, we had a fantastic time. The staff on the Legend was wonderful, our room was nice (the beds are so comfortable), the food was good, and the ports were fun. In fact, we had such a good time, I am now planning our next cruise (but we may try one without the kids). ?