First Time Cruiser: Carnival Conquest Cruise Review by tmweber
Overall Member Rating
First Time Cruiser
Destination: Western Caribbean
Sunday: Left Sunday morning around 7:30 and arrived at EZ Cruise parking in Galveston a little before noon. I had made a reservation online and found the cheapest parking. I had read many reviews over the past few months and EZ Cruise had many positive comments and nothing negative. EZ Cruise dropped us and our luggage at the terminal with no problems. We tipped a terminal guy to turn our luggage in for us. Once we arrived at the terminal, we were on the ship in less than an hour. Everything was smooth and we had no problems. They did see a bottle of wine in our luggage with the x-ray machine and wanted to look at it. No problem. They let us take it on board. Our rooms were not quite ready, so we went to Deck 9 for a lunch buffet. After we ate, we went to our room at around 1:30. We had an outside room with a window. It was a neat view for us. The room was clean and spacious for two people. Our More luggage arrived around 4:00 with no problem. The suitcase with a 12 pack of Pepsi had been opened and checked (they leave a note in the suitcase). They must have thought it was beer. We went to the pool and familiarized ourselves with the ship. Teh ship left promptly at 4:00. We met our room steward and went to the late dinner. We chose to have our own table the whole week. Our wait staff was awesome and took great care of us.
This was a day at sea. We relaxed by the pool and ate way too much! It was so good! Monday night was formal night. My wife wore a long sun dress and I wore Dockers and a collared shirt. We saw formal dresses and tuxedos too. Most people were dressed like us. Lobster and jumbo shrimp were on the main course. Very good! Our wait staff had no problem bringing us a second plate.
Another relaxing day at sea. More eating and relaxing by the pool. We also played mini golf on the top deck. That was cool.
We arrived in Jamaica on time. They have some vendors set up right when you get off the ship. They are pretty aggressive in selling their goods. Some were rude if you didn't look at their stuff. I have been all around the world and understand the different cultures, so it didn't bother me too much. I just told them no thanks. We had booked the zipline tour through Carnival because of the violence in Kingston. We just wanted to make sure we were safe and wanted to use Carnival's transportation. The zipline was very cool! We were in the Jamaican jungle and had 6 zips. They were very safe. We were hooked to two different lines and were strapped in tight. We had no reservations about doing it. They guides were funny and loved their job. The longest zip was about 1200 feet long, about 250 feet high and we went 40 mph. A great rush! They gave us Rum punch afterwards. Very good. We also bought jerk chicken and Jamaican beer. That was good too. We bought a photo CD. It was $25 for 7 pictures. Kind of expensive, but great pics! We went back to the terminal and shopped inside (not wiht the pushy vendors outside). We left on time and headed to Grand Cayman.
We arrived in Grand Cayman at 7:00. We had to tender into the port. Those that had a Carnival excursion left the boat first. I did a lot of checking online and decided to go snorkeling and see stingray city with Capt Marvins. They are located across the street from the terminal. You can book online for $5 less or just do it there in person. They gave us the online rate there in person. It was $40 per person for a 3 hour tour. Excellent price for the oldest outfitter on the island (since 1951). We took a short van ride to Capt Marvin's house to launch. He was sitting in a chair and was looking out the window. He is 94 and just retired 2 years ago. He is a legend on Grand Cayman. We took a 44 foot boat to stingray city. There were about 20 people on our boat. We stayed at stingray city for about 30 mins. It was really neat. We held, kiss and hugged wild stingrays. Very cool! We then went snorkeling at the barrier reef and coral gardens for about 30 mins each. They gave us the gear and helped those that needed it. We saw lots of neat fish and coral. It was in about 10 foot water. We went then went back to the dock for the sort van rise back to the terminal area. The only downfall was the price of photos. They take a professional photographer on board. She takes a lot of neat pics, but they were two for $17. A little steep for me. We bought a $15 underwater camera on the ship and it did just fine. Not as good of quality as her photos, but a lot cheaper in price. I recommend taking your own camera and sticking with Capt Marvins. It was half the price of the Carnival excursion with another company. We were also served water and punch.
We arrived in Cozumel on time and went shopping. They have lots of neat stuff there. We went to the taxi stand and took a 10 min ride to Mr. Sancho's resort. We paid $50 for an all inclusive beach area. We had unlimited Sol beer and drinks, as well as all the food we could eat. Their coconut shrimp and fish tacos are the best. We had to pay $10 more for a beach umbrella, but it was worth it. We swam, snorkeled and used the ocean kayak. It was a lot of fun. We went back and did more shopping and got back on the boat.
Another day at sea. We did a lot of activities on the ship and ate more!
Arrived back in Galveston before 8:00. We did the Self debarkation. That went smooth. Customs went smooth too. EZ Cruise took us back to our car with no problems. It was easy to get off the island and we headed back to SA.
Alcohol is expensive on board. Each person can bring one bottle of wine. We did buy a few drinks though. We are not heavy drinkers and wanted to remember our trip. All the food was good. Especially the fish and chips on deck 10. We had a chocolate buffet on Saturday. That was awesome. There were lots of activities throughout the day. The Marriage game was very funny. We went to a few of the night show. They were pretty good. The country and Latin bands were very good. Chris Jefferson was our Cruise Director. He was funny and did a great job. We will cruise with Carnival again. We are hooked. My wife and I never went on a honeymoon, so we chose to go alone. There were not many kids on in May, so that was nice. We can't wait to take our kids. They have a lot of great activities on board for them. There was a huge waterslide and an outdoor movie screen by the pool. The seas were calm, so we had no problem with getting sick. Overall: an excellent choice! Less