This is my third Carnival Cruise, first cruise with my children, 2 and 4 years old. We were five families, with two to four children each. WHAT A MISTAKE!!!!!!! NOT FOR CHILDREN!!!!!!!!
The worst thing about our trip was the Camp Carnival. I stopped asking my children if they wanted to go because I felt like they were being forced to go, instead of wanting to go. There was no planned activities for the 2 to 5 year old group. They had no pool or water activities at all, which, I ASSUMED there would be. It was basically a boring day care situation. The older groups seemed to like the camp, but, they could sign themselves in and out when they wanted, so they weren't trapped when it was boring for them. I wanted my children to have so much fun they would never forget it. When I looked into the cruise and read about Camp Carnival, I expected the program to intensify their vacation, instead, I found it was designed for parents to unload their children for "baby sitting". Their schedule was also annoying. It was made to suit them and not the passengers. One of the families with us had been on a Disney Cruise. They constantly spoke of how Disney entertains and welcomes children. Carnival "puts up" with children. My mistake, I know. Next time I will go Disney.
The service on the Conquest was good but seemed understaffed. I felt sorry for the workers, they were overworked. There were lines for everything. They were all very nice and never complained.
I saw two shows. One was with birds, which my children enjoyed, and the other was so bad we walked out. It was based on France, with singing and dancing. After that I couldn't bear to go to anymore.
Our group had the most fun on the islands. On Montego Bay, we went to a all-inclusive hotel/beach, paid $20.00/adult and $10.00/child ($2.00/each way cab), and everything was included! Food, drinks, beach, chairs, pools, paddle boats, and kayaks. It was worth it. Grand Cayman was a little disappointing. OUR FAULT! We were trying to get an excursion for our group (not through Carnival), and they were only going to give us a couple of kids free. Take my advice, book individually. You'll end up getting more kids free that way. It was $35.00/person and about 2 1/2 hours to swim with the stingrays. Cozumel was surprising. It is much more commercialized since the last time I was there, which means more expensive than I remember. We also went to a beach on this island. It was $14.00 one way in a cab, and $10.00/adult to use the beach. Here you paid for everything. Jet ski was $50.00/half hour. It was still fun, the kids loved playing in the sand. My sister-in-law got food poisoning though. We probably should have went to a hotel beach, being that we were in Mexico! Ask some of the staff where they go, usually it's a pretty smart move.
Embarkment and debarkment were good. Parking our car in their lot took forever, so if you can park at your hotel and get a shuttle, it would be well worth it!
I could go on, but, I'm sick of complaining! I wouldn't go back on the Conquest if it was free! Carnival......not so much fun.