My boyfriend and I (both in our 30's) have been talking about taking a cruise for a while and finally decided to do it. We drove down to Galveston from Houston on the Saturday and stayed at the Holiday Inn Express Hotel and Suites Galveston West-Seawall. Very cute room but the staff is not too helpful. They would help us and then walk away to help someone else so I would stand there a few times for her to come back and continue with what she was helping me with. We parked at the hotel parking lot for the week for $20. Let's just say the information in regards to the shuttle service wasn't that clear either. The 3 times I spoke to the lady at the front desk, did they not once mention that you had to put your name on the list!! We ended up taking a cab to the cruise ship, as we were the 3rd group on the list.
Once we got to the port we checked our bags and waited in line with everybody else. We were able to check a suitcase full of bottled water and carried on a bottle of wine per person. No problems at all with that. Took us about an hour to get through custom but time flew by really fast. Once we got on the ship, our rooms weren't quit ready yet so we went on the Lido deck and had lunch at the buffet and a drink. About 2:00 pm we were able to go to our room, which was located on the 10th floor. We received an upgrade thanks to Vacationstogo.com and really liked our room, #1022. Private balcony, king size bed and a couch that pulls out to a king size bed. Lot's of room for our clothes and luggage's were stored under the bed.
The staff and crew were really nice and very friendly. Our rooms were made up twice a day. It is amazing how well they remember our names everyday. The food was also good at the Monet restaurant at 8:15 pm, table 440 and also at the Pointe Steakhouse but the buffet was quite busy. I have never seen so many hungry people running around and some of them could be quite rude!! The kids on the ship were everywhere. Even in the Adult only area. Not too happy about that as there was no room for other adults in the Jacuzzi. The entertainment wasn't too bad either, we went the Paris show and the magic show was really good, makes me wonder how it is still done when we was 2 rows from the stage. We would walk around the casino just to people watch but didn't stay too long as the smoking got to us.
Our first stop was Montego Bay, Jamaica. We decided to go to the Negril beach at the resort. Drove for over an hour and only stayed for 4 hours. No chairs on the beach or by the pool. Wasn't worth it for the money. Next day was Grand Cayman Island. We did the Turtle, turtles and more turtles deluxe and that was a lot of fun. Got to hold and pet the turtles and then did some snorkeling in their lagoon. 3rd port was Cozumel, Mexico where we swam with the dolphins and had lunch. This was the best part of the trip!!
The day we were supposed to arrive in Galveston was delayed due to fog. I have to say it is a total nightmare!! The port was closed so we didn't get to the dock until 2:00 pm by then there were a lot of upset people. Only one landline to call out if you have to reschedule your flight just like I had to do so waited in line for a while just to use their phone. They started calling the floors to depart at 4:00 pm and we were the last to leave as we were on the 10th floor. Only one buffet was open for lunch for everybody on the cruise ship and they also made us leave our rooms so the cleaners can clean them for the next cruise heading out that day. You either sit in the elevator area, which we did on the floor or on the Lido deck where the horn is blowing every minute. By the time we got off the ship, it was 6:45 pm and waited in line to get through customs. Nobody told us the porters that work at the port take your luggage for a tip and take you right to the front of the line. 2 ½ hours later, we made it through customs and found our express shuttle waiting out front. Express shuttle wasn't so speedy when we got out of the van and told him that we were going to take a cab instead. He decided to take us to the hotel and come back later to pick up other customers. By the time we go to our car, it was 10:00 pm. Not a great way to end our holidays.
Overall, Carnival cruise had great staff and great restaurant food. This cruise ship is great for family and kids, but not enough activities for the adults. Would I take another cruise again? Not for a long time!!