Carnival Freedom Cruise Review by britmermaid: Freedom from Stress
Overall Member Rating
Freedom from Stress
Destination: Western Caribbean
Embarkation: Fort Lauderdale (Port Everglades)
We made a last minute booking on Carnival Freedom for the October 4th. Western Caribbean Cruise. Stayed overnight with our son in Ft Lauderdale and when we were dropped off were rather dismayed by the long line waiting to check in. Everyone was cheerful in the line and the Carnival employees were efficient but it took a while to get on board for lunch on Lido Deck 9. The decor in the Freedom Restaurant has the usual rather gaudy theme and we were amused by the translucent blue heads of the Statue of Liberty around the walls. The buffet meals were good and the seating was adequate especially if you walk aft. The Fish and Chip Cafe on deck 10 was excellent with ahi tuna on watermelon, fried oysters and, of course, batter fried fish with chips.
Two of the shows were outstanding. 'The Big Easy' with its New Orleans theme featured excellent dancing, costumes and music and the finale with the band members marching in the aisles and the dancers throwing Mardi Gras beads ended on an More up beat note as the audience clapped and sang to 'When the Saints Come Marching In'. The 'Ticket to Ride' Beatles show was another fantastic show with clever animation and lighting as well as the great music that had the older crowd singing along. Although some of the younger people didn't know all of the music they enjoyed it as well. The Cruise Director, Wee Jimmy, was amusing and his staff were efficient and friendly. A little less Bingo would be an improvement as in order to get a good seat in the theatre we had to sit through the games and raffle sales which was tiring.
We enjoyed our relaxing sea days and never had a problem with finding a chaise in the shade, (plenty in the sun on the tiered Lido deck) and the adult only pool was a quiet area to read and dip in the water - - can't say 'swim' as none of the pools are deep and are filled with people just standing around the edges. Hot tubs also good and not at all crowded. We appreciated the rubber mat and towel station by the hot tub steps as so many ships leave the wet floors slippery. Crew members were constantly mopping the floor and all over the ship they are working hard cleaning and keeping it spic and span.
We only had three ports and as we have been to Key West many times we just took a walk around. In the Cayman Islands we chose the 'Reef and Rays' tour. Excellent boat ride out to a reef where we snorkeled, lovely corals, sea fans and fish then on to the sand bar where we snorkeled while the sting rays glided all around us. Our boat captain held up the sting rays so that we could stroke their wings, soft and silky like a mushroom! Excellent tour with the crew of two young men who helped the people who were nervous about the snorkeling and assisted with the equipment. In Jamaica, Ocho Rios, we went to a tropical garden with exotic vegetation, waterfalls and streams then on to Dunns Falls. People were climbing up the rocks and navigating the pools to the next level. We walked down to the beach and then up on the real steps beside the falls. Would have been nice to be in the water as it was a hot day but we stopped at the viewing platforms to cheer on our bus mates. It was enough of a climb for us and we heard later that some of the people on the tour had slipped and were quite bruised.
Altogether a good, short, last minute cruise. Food, entertainment, shore tours, music around the ship, (especially Greg in the piano bar) all made it a relaxing and fun six days - - now looking forward to a longer cruise in December! Less
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Cabin review: 6381
Assigned by ship 6381 was a small 'handicapped' cabin. Large bathroom but main cabin quite small and can't imagine how a wheel chair would fit in. Closet space small with the life jackets in one. Otherwise good value for what we paid, good location by elevator and central to get to Lido. Quiet location in spite of being a walkway to main passageways.
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