I had checked and asked a million questions to everyone I saw and knew. Finally it was time to go. We flew out the same day our cruise left. Leaving in winter it was suggested that we leave the day before. I could understand the reasoning but everything worked out anyway and travel went well. We arrived in Ft. LAuderdale around 10:30 a.m. and went right to the Ship. We just took a cab since there were just the 4 of us ( my husband, 16 yr old Son and 12 yr. old Son) This was the first cruise for all of us. Everyone was very impressed. They fed us from the min. we walked on board, til the time we had to leave. The ship was plenty big and VERY clean. The workers were fun and very helpful and took care of our every need. I have never been more spoiled. Anything you needed it was there and if it wasn't the crew got it for you.
We ate breakfast and lunch buffet style. Everyone ate when they were ready and I NEVER heard any complaints of they didn't like the food. Dinner was amazing. My 16 year old loved when he took a sip of water, our waiter was right there filling it up again. Our waiter and his ass't remember everything we liked, water with dinner, pop for the kids, wine for my husband, every night Mashed potatoes for the boys and Baked for me. They even remembered that I like Decaf coffee with dessert.
Entertainment was great. We really enjoyed the shows and the kids liked the comedy. My12 year old swam, used waterslides, loved the hot tubs and all activities. Neither of my kids went into their age appropriate clubs. I think if we went with other families that they knew they would have. We all enjoyed doing what we wanted when we wanted to. My husband worked out everyday. He kept saying they had great equipment and he got a great work out.
New Years Eve on the ship was amazing. It was a big Party. We got off the ship in every port. Key West and Grand Caymans we went out on our own. It was perfectly safe. We shopped and went to beaches. In Jamaica, we booked an excursion form the ship. My kids and I did the Dolphin Swim and Dunns Rivers Falls. My husband did not want to swim with the dolphins so he booked Dunns river fall climb and just to go to Dolphin Cove. Since we had two different excursions, we had different wrist bands. We were separated in Jamaica. My husband climbed the falls himself while the kids and I swam with the dolphins. When we went to Dunns river falls my husband was done. He was very disappointed that this happened. Actually the bus runs back and forth across the street and if we knew better he could have come with us just to watch and then we all could have gone to the falls together. THe dolphins swim was Great and the kids had a great time climbing the falls. I chose to walk up next to them and take pictures. My husband liked the fall but would have liked it better had he been with us.
Checking out our photos every night became part of routine. ON Captains dinner night we took nice family pictures.
I haven't stopped talking about the cruise since we came home. I think that is what gets me thru the Winter. We are definitely planning another cruise.
The experience on The Carnival Freedom was OUTSTANDING. I am hooked on cruising.