I had booked this cruise 502 days out. At several times it looked like we might have to cancel. But it all worked out in the end. We had a great time. We flew in one day early and stayed at the Best Western Hotel Granville. We really enjoyed Vancouver, the hotel and the area. We took the "Big Bus tour" to get an overview of the city. Also we were able to take the new Canada train line from YVR into the city center. Great train.
Embarkation was a breeze. We did have V.I.P. because we had booked a Cat 11 aft wrap suite. Due to the economic downturn I did get a good refund before final payment was due. We got at Canada Place by 11:30 and were onboard approximately 12:00. We relaxed with a few drinks and great deli sandwiches from the lido before our suite was ready @ 1:30. We had the same exact room on the Carnival Pride the year before on the Mexican Rivera the year before and this one was in perfect condition. I had to remind myself I was on a different ship. All of our gifts and liquor ordered from the bon Voyage dept. was there. We also had pre orderd Champagne and Canapes for sail away. After a relaxing on our HUGE balcony for a couple hours it was time for boat drill. Our friendly cabin steward Jhoe dropped by to introduce himself and deliver ice. After one of the fastest Boat drills ever it was time for our private sail away party. Our neighbors from the next cabin over peeked arround the corner and said hello. I shared a few of our canapes with them. Carnival does a great job on these.
The senerey sailing from Vancouver was just the first of amazing vistas to come. We did the "your choice" dinning. We were seated immediately and had great service. Our trio of eastern European waiters were Great. Elvis, Mladen and, Micheal did a fantastic job. They would take care of us for 3 nights of the cruise. We did Supper Club twice and I ate in town in Junea. We sat in anohter station one night of the cruise but went back to our favorite team. Your choice dining worked great for us. No wait for a table for two. We ate arround 7:00 or a little earlier. Our first sea day I had a good work out in the Roman Spa and came back to a promptly served pre orderd (via card) Room Service Breakfast. We used the free room service a lot, for breakfast and lunch. Excellent lox and bagels. Most of our first sea day was spent looking at the amazing views and relaxing on the balcony. We preordered booze and mixers so we can make our own drinks in cabin. Also did a few room good room service lunches. I really enjoyed all of the shows in the main show lounge. The music singing and dancers are great. I always sit on the lower level and enjoy a nice after dinner drink. "THE BIG EASY" show was so good I went @ 8:45 and came back @ 10:30. Ketchikan we did some shopping and loved the Alaska Queen Steamboat. Friendly crew and tour guides were great. We had lunch at Steamers on the pier (Good Alaska brew and a salmon burger) and hit the local history museum. That night was our first night in the Supper Club. We had great service. Danijelia was especially nice. We had such a good time we booked a second night for Sunday eve. The lamb and fillet mignon were excellent as was the table side prepared ceasar salad. Amazing Deserts!!
Juneau we did the City and Mendenthall Glacier tour which was very good. We had a tasty lunch at "El Somberro" family owned Mexican rest. And then I did the mount Roberts Tramway which, even in the rain and fog was a lot of fun. Later I had an excellent Halibut dinner @ the "Gold Room" at the art deco style Westmark Baranof Hotel in town.
Skagway looks like a movie set from the old west. After some fun shopping there we went back to the ship for a room service lunch. later we really enjoyed the White Pass and Yukon Railway.
Sitka we did the excellent Sitka History and Nature Walk. Our guide "Wolf" a transplant of some 20 plus years had great passion about the town and the local people, plants, animals and history. Lunch was a freshly choclate and nut dipped icecream bar. After four days of off and on rain Mother Nature cut us a break and let us have some sunshine at the end of our day in Sitka and then on our last sea day spent cruising Prince William sound and College fjord. The Harvard glacier was nicely lit up as the sun set. The Scenery was eye popping!! I got to see and hear glaciers calving.
We did luggage express. It was nice to put our bags out our door on the last night of the cruise and not have to worry about them until we got back to LAX. One bag arrived late, but was driven out to our house the early the next day. We did the Carnival tranfer to the airport, which worked well. Overall we really liked the ship and had exellent & friendly service. All food we had onboard was good to excellent. And I work in fine dinning. We look forward to our next Carnival Cruise on Carnival Dream in Jan 2010. All preordered tours, credits, gifts and liqour arrived like clockwork.