We have sailed as a family on multiple cruise lines and this was the first time on a Carnival ship. We were not sure what to expect based on the reputation Carnival has as the party boat. While we are not opposed to people enjoying their time on a cruise we are more interested in the ports of call, the weather, and the dining then we are on the parties.
The ship was not our taste in decor but was very clean and functional. We found the inside public spaces (Coffee shop, bars, library etc.) to be very comfortable.
The outside areas were also nice with plenty of beach chairs and places to enjoy the sun. The serenity deck was very nice but unfortunately also very crowded. Still when that was full it was not hard to find another place to relax. The single pool was always packed but that is to be expected on a Southern cruised during the holidays.
Meals were good but not great. The outside dining on the lido deck was actually some of the best we have had. Made to order breakfast options and a tremendous Mongolian Wok at lunch. The inside buffet was not to inspiring but quite functional.
The dining room had a nice layout and was typically good. Not as many choices as on other cruises but usually at least a couple of things that worked. Service in the dining room was a little spotty. This is a training ship and I wondered if we were working with some trainee's. They had a good attitude and were pleasant which was nice.
The main showroom entertainment was not up to par. The shows seemed very dated and were not that well performed. The lounge entertainment we found to be much better. A great Karaoke DJ and a Canadian singer guitarist that was outstanding.
Two great excursions:
Shore snorkel in Grand Cayman (pretty inexpensive) but some great fish, stingrays, octopus to be seen.
Tulum for Mayan ruins was an excellent trip. Well worth it.
The only issue we really had was with the internet service. It was very pricey and slow. Signed up for an hour and was so disappointed with speed that I did not add minutes. Found out later I was charged for additional time at a much higher rate because I had not logged out properly at the end of the hour. Complained that it should have just stopped when my hour was up and was told that in the fine print it says you will be charged. Seems like nickel and time stuff when you are on a 7,000 cruise.
Overall we enjoyed the trip and would take another carnival cruise.