This was our first cruise, so we decided to book a room on the Queen Mary the night before embarkation. The Ship has lots to see and we decided to have dinner at Chelsea's restaurant. The dinner was nice and had a beautiful view of Long Beach. Staying on the Queen Mary the night before is extremely convenient because the check in for Carnival is on the Ship. I would suggest heading for early check in at 9:00. We were 3rd in line so we were lucky! After we checked in, we went back to our room on the Queen Mary and packed our luggage and headed to the Carnival parking garage so they could take them to the ship. We were walking around the port, when we bumped into a porter who suggested that we take one of the free shuttles to long beach for a couple of hours. The Pride was undergoing a Coast Guard inspection, so embarkation was a little delayed. That had to be one of the best suggestions! We had lunch at Chili's, walked around for a while and when we got back, everyone was in line waiting to check in. Because we checked in early, we bypassed all of the lines. I would say we were standing in line for about 30 minutes. Not a problem. Getting onto the ship was a breeze, our stateroom was ready, and we were greeted by our Steward Randall. Who was great by the way. Shortly after we got to our stateroom, we did our muster drill and the ship left the port.
The ship is absolutely beautiful, squeaky clean and has lots of unique artwork. The Pride accommodates well over 2000 people and no matter where you went, you didn't have to wait long for anything. There's plenty of seating and friendly staff to help you out.
We didn't do any activities, but we did attend the towel folding class on the last day which was fun. They sell the book too which will help you keep up on what you learned in the class. Service The service was great! Our steward Randall was very nice, and it was refreshing to come back to our room and have it nice and clean. The first night we came back after dinner and found some decadent treats waiting for us. Besides you never know what little towel critter will be waiting for you.
Our stateroom was very nice and had all of the amenities we could have asked for. The bed was comfortable and we propped our door open at night to listen to the sea. We slept very well. We did hear our upstairs neighbors walking around, I think they had some young children with them but it was all good.
After our 2 fun days at sea, we were in Puerto Vallarta, we went to the Las Caletas resort for a fun day on the beach. We were greeted by our hosts and walked to a boat with an open bar and a fun crew. When we reached our destination, we saw beautiful vegetation and our buffet lunch was waiting for us and you guess it, an open bar as well. We spent a relaxing afternoon swimming in the ocean and basking in the sun. We took the boat back to our port, boarded the Pride right away, no lines, everything was well organized. I do have to warn you about the local shops in the port, if you don't purchase from them, they get agitated and called us cheap. Well we won't be shopping there any time soon. But the rest of the time there was really nice.
Our second stop was Mazatlan where we did the Stone Island tour. We met up with our tour guides, Alma and Letti in the Taj Mahal lounge where they gave us some preliminary information and then we walked to a party boat which had an open bar. The ride to Stone Island was about a 10 minute trip where they gave us some of the history of Mazatlan and their culture which we found fascinating. We got on a shuttle which was pulled by a tractor to our destination. The beach on Stone Island has the best waves for body surfing and nice soft sand to sink your feet into. There were a lot of local folks selling their crafts there as well.
Our third stop was Cabo San Lucas, where the ship is tendered. The tender boats were coming to the ship one after the other so there wasn't any waiting to go ashore. the pier area was nice, lots of little shops to go to. We went into the town and hit some of the stores, I needed a hat, and found one for a great price. Then we went to Cabo Wabo for lunch and some beverages :-). We then headed back to catch a tender boat back to the pride, again no waiting and before we knew it we were back on the ship sitting in our balcony just reflecting on our day and the cruise.
Dining Dinner on the Pride was very nice. You want to make sure you get there at the dinner bell. We were late the first night and we got a few frowns from the hostess, but we were still served. I liked the Mongolian Steak salad the best.
Disembarkation The day before disembarkation, Jeff the cruise director was on the Carnival Channel describing everything you needed to know from filling out your declaration paper work to information on going through customs. We were the third group to be called off. We waited on the deck and were talking with other people who we discovered lived about a mile from us. Disembarkation was fairly easy, we were waiting in line in customs for about 30 minutes and headed to find our luggage which was right there in our section all together and ready to go.