This is my second cruise with Carnival. I went on this trip with two of my friends Scott and Lonnie. We flew into Orlando a day early so I can't help anyone out with the airport transfer on the way to the ship. Sorry.
We arrived at the ship at about 10:30. It wasn't too crowded people were just starting to arrive. It took us about 45 minutes to board the ship. Carnival was not boarding the vessel when we got there, I'm sure we would have gotten on earlier if they were. I've read a couple reviews by people saying its so complicated boarding this particular ship. My friends and I had no problems at all. We had met out room attendant as soon as we got to our room. Nyoman was excellent, he was very pleasant and a great addition to Carnival's staff. The days at sea was relaxing, we hung by the pool bar had a few drinks.
The Red Sail Restaurants food was pretty good. We ate about 3 or 4 meals there. We particularly like the deli and pizzeria. The Kaleidoscope bar was excellent. Ken and Peter were fabulous- best bartenders ever! Genay the guitar player at night was amazing. He sang Happy Birthday to me and we did a song together. He is very talented and a great addition to the Glory. The music on the lido deck was good, they were playing a mix of everything. The activities they have on the lido deck during the day are great. We were hanging in the hot tub watching all the people compete in the Red, White and Blue challenges. GO BLUE!
Costa Maya- was interesting, a couple of the guards on the pier have M-16s which was different. We walked around the complex at the end of the pier before our shore tour, they have a lot of shops, pools and bars. My friends and I did the Jungle Beach Break. The ride to the beach is long but worth the trip. There is nothing really to see on the way just a lot of trees and bushes. The beach is nice the water is clean and the drinks are free (best part). There are a few shops, the people will bargain with you which is great. We met some people from Atlanta, Baltimore and New Jersey. The bus ride back was fun. The driver had given my buddy Ben the microphone and we just had a blast. We were singing along to songs the driver was playing and just being all out crazy.
Belize- is beautiful. My birthday had fallen on this day and it was a birthday to remember. We did the shark and stingray alley. Anyone who loves to snorkel or swim I highly suggest this tour. The crew picks you up right from the ship (the ship docks about 6miles off the coast). It takes about an hour to get to the dive site. The sharks immediately come right up to the boat; you can lean over the side and touch them. The sharks scatter as soon as everyone starts getting into the water. The best time to see the sharks is at the very end. After snorkeling they take you to San Pedro for lunch and shopping. The lunch was good chicken, rice and cake. I recommend trying the Belikin beer. It's very tasty- kind of like a Yuengling. The ride back to the ship we saw dolphins and the guides stop the boat for pictures . The ride back is about 1 and ½ hours.
Cozumel- was nice. We did the Fiesta Party Boat. It was ok-the beach is alright. The way to the beach is boring. There is nothing really going on just meeting some fellow cruisers and having a few drinks. We met a family from Daytona. They were awesome. The way back is fun they have a few games. My buddy Lonnie competed in both games. He didn't win either but he got a little tipsy in the process. After the party boat we went to Fat Tuesday's. What a great party. I recommend this place to anyone who goes to Cozumel. The ship leaves at 4:30 so you don't really have a lot of time to spend here if you do a shore tour.
Progresso- was the worst port I have ever been to. It's cool cause the ship docks on what I've heard was the "longest pier in the world". A bus is provided to take the people to shore, it's about a 10-15 minute ride. This is the only cool thing about this port. I've been to the Bahamas and all over the eastern and southern Caribbean and I've never been harassed like I was here. The people do not leave you alone. They want you to buy everything or if not buy anything give them money anyway. My buddy bought a Corona and there was something floating around in it but it wasn't a lime or ice or anything like that. We met a couple who was staying there and they said they were sick the first couple days, they had gotten food poisoning from a lack of refrigeration. I would not eat or drink anything here. The drinks are really cheap but who knows what they are made from. We stayed in town for about 20 minutes and then went back to the ship. You can do shopping on the pier they have some nice shops. I really suggest a shore tour if ever going to this port. My buddy Ben said Chichen-Itza was incredible.
Dining- was very good. The food was different every night. The staff put on a show every night and sang Happy Birthday to me on my birthday. I feel bad I forget my waiter and waitress' names. They were excellent.
Nightlife- was the best of any ship I have ever been on. The club was hopping every night with a different theme of music each night. The karaoke bar was great, a lot of people came to this every night. The Kaleidoscope bar was an excellent place to grab a drink and meet new people. Overall a great party every night no matter what you decide to do.
Debarkation- went smoothly. We got to the Amber Palace at 7:30 and were off the ship at 7:45. The ride back to the airport was nice the driver was good. Carnival went to extremes with this ship. The staff was terrific. Couldn't have asked for a better vacation. My friends and I were very pleased and will continue to sail with Carnival.
Eric Vargo New Jersey