We decided to cruise out of New York since we live on Long Island and we figured that we wouldn't have to deal with traveling on a plane and the extra cost of airfare.
We arrived at the Manhattan cruise terminal at 10:45AM. Since we were so early we were checked in immediately and given a seat to wait until we were ready to board. Boarding started at about 12:00PM. We were on the ship and went to our cabin to drop off our carry on luggage. Since our room was made up they let us leave the carry on in the room. We then headed up to the Lido deck to have some lunch. It wasn't very crowded so we were able to eat without much wait. Then we went to explore the ship. The ship is quite large and everything is laid out quite nicely. The ship left port at 4PM. We had a muster drill which didn't take too long. Then we went to our cabin to unpack, but our suitcases were not their yet. So we went out on our balcony to view the New York skyline. Our suitcases finally arrived around 7:30PM, we unpacked and changed our clothes for dinner. We had the late seating at 8:15PM. The dinner was very good. Our waiter Sorin was the best. We were at a table of six. After dinner we went down to the casino before the show. We both won some money the first night. The show was terrific.
After we had left New York the captain made an announcement that the ship was not going to Puerto Rico but instead it was going to Port Canaveral Florida. We were a little disappointed but we figured that we were on the ship and as long as the captain stayed in clam waters it was better than being bounced around in rough seas. We arrived in Port Canaveral on Monday. Wasn't too much to do there. We took the tour bus to Coco Beach, but the beach was very, very crowded and the water had a bad undertow because of the storm so we stayed out of the water. We went back to the ship and just relaxed by the pool.
The next day we were told that we were going to Freeport, Grand Bahamas. When we got into port it wasn't the nicest of ports that we have seen, but we took it in stride, figuring that as long as we were happy on the boat that is all that mattered. We took a cab into town and did some shopping. We never go to the beach because it kept raining, so when we finished we went back to the boat and sat by the pool for awhile.
When the ship left Freeport the captain made an announcement that our next stop was going to be Newport, Rhode Island and not Nassau, Bahamas like originally scheduled. I really didn't care because my husband and I had been to Newport many time before, since our son went to college there. We felt that it would be a nice visit since we hadn't been back there in 10 years. Anyway, I decided to go down to the casino to play the slot machines and my husband decided to talk a little nap. While I was in the casino a group of very dissatisfied people came storming through shouting NO NEWPORT.....WE WANT OUR MONEY BACK.... I was quite shocked at the way they were yelling and screaming. There was about 300 to 400 of very unhappy passengers. I decided to leave my slot machine and go to my room to tell my husband what was going on. We both ended up looking over the Atrium and seeing all the people yelling and screaming at the pursers office. I felt so bad for them. As it turned out these people took back their gratuity money that was suppose to be given to the cabin stewards and dining room servers. It wasn't fair they did nothing wrong to these people. From that point on you could see the change in those people on the ship. They were not happy. What did they want a ship to sail into a hurricane.....
I just want everyone to know that we had 8 days of sunshine and 8 days of entertainment, food, and a nice clean room to sleep in. When you take a cruise during hurricane season these are the changes you take. A captain of a ship has to think of the safety of the people on board and his crew members even if it means that itineraries have to be changed. I would have loved to see Puerto Rico, St. Thomas and Turks and Caicos, but I know that the ships safety comes first. I would definitely still sail on Carnival. Maybe next time I will sail from Florida since you are not at sea for so many days like when you sail from New York.
Here is a quick update of the ships features:
Cabin - Very large and comfortable. We had a balcony.
Food - The buffet was OK some good dishes some not so good. Enjoyed the salad bar and the pizza was great. Also the hamburgers, chicken fingers, onion rings were good too. Breakfast was pretty good except the long wait to get an omelet made, only waited one morning for that.
Dinner - Excellent, the choices were very good and the food was very tasty. Loved the chocolate melting cake.....
Entertainment - Excellent. Every show was great!!! especially "Ticket to Ride" and "Generations". Cruise director Brent was also very good.
Debarkation - It took us quite a while to get off the ship. We did not get off until 10:45AM. Unfortunately we had a limo picking us up at 11AM. By the time we got our luggage and got through customs it was almost 11:20AM. The poor limo driver had to keep driving around until we found him.
With all the ups and downs of this cruise I still had a great 40th Anniversary celebration.