This was my first cruise. I didn't know what to expect. I'll admit, I'm not a big fan of water sports or suntanning. I'm even more opposed to crowds. I thought I was in for a healthy dose of both. I couldn't have been more wrong. I'd like to thank Carnival Cruise Lines for the outstanding job they did on our cruise February 6th to the 10th. This was the only vacation I've taken in 37 years where I didn't want to come home when it was over.
The room was spotless and stayed that way the whole trip. Our room steward (Way Lon) knew us by name by 6:00pm the night we departed and would come out of whatever room he was working in to say hi to us as we walked down the hall. They cleaned the room twice a day! On day 3 my wife had a headache so we called room service for some Tylenol. It arrived in less than 3 minutes!
The food in the dining room was very good. I guess I don't have much to compare it to, because I made it a point to order something off the menu that I'd never had before. Service on the table was impeccable. I miss the cheeseburgers in the late-night sea view bistro, and eating breakfast out on the deck outside the morning buffet was a highlite of my trip.
Getting on and off the boat (at Canaveral and the ports of call) was much easier than expected. The shore excursions (both through the boat and through outside companies) was effortless. Don't miss the "Dolphin Encounters" at Nassau.
While on the ship, I kept asking "where is everyone?". The clubs, casino and decks were deserted after about 10:00pm. The shows were fantastic (although the "sexy Pee-Wee Herman's may scar me for life), and Barry, the piano player in the touch of class lounge, quickly became our favorite. My wife and I both came home with medals for winning the 80's music trivia contest and the adult trivia game (that Robin REALLY didn't want to do).
I was completely satisfied. I will be back. I will choose Carnival because I understand how hard they worked to keep me happy. I realize you can't keep everyone happy, and more than a few people on my trip mentioned how things ran in the glory days of cruising, but I don't believe I could afford to be treated that well anywhere else. There's no resorts or hotels that could match the consistent effort and results the Carnival crew delivered. I'm sure I could find that level of service, but at a price I'd never be able to afford. In a few words: my first trip was outstanding.