I am the cruise planner in our family. I have had a big group go with us the past few cruises but this cruise was our family and two others. We drove down from North Carolina the day before our cruise. It was my husband, son, two daughters and nephew. Our children are in there 20's and love going on cruises. The drive down to Miami was tiring but we didn't mind because we were excited about the cruise. We spent Saturday night at the Homewood Suites Miami Airport at Blue Lagoon. We stayed on the Blue Lagoon side and did not hear any planes. It was a very nice hotel and great for families. I made a mistake getting a one bedroom suite. It was supposed to sleep 7 but not comfortably. Next time, I will book a 2 bedroom suite. They have complimentary breakfast and it was very good. I had read in reviews that it was hard to find a table at breakfast but half the tables were empty. We will stay there again if leaving from Miami.
We arrived at the port between 10:30 and 10:45. It didn't seem to be too crowded until we had a delay because of a severe thunderstorm and they had to stop people boarding for about 45 minutes. Then the port was crowded with all the people waiting for their zone to be called. Once our zone was called, we went straight to the Lido deck for lunch when we got on the ship. We didn't have any trouble finding a table. We finished our lunch around 1:00 and went to our rooms.
This was our first time having a room on the Panorama deck and we loved it. Being at the front of the ship, we could feel the movement more. We love to feel the ship rock, especially at night. It wasn't like that every day but we wouldn't have mind if it had been.
Our steward was Ryadi from Indonesia. I hope I spelled his name correctly. He and his assistant were very good. Our room always looked nice.
Our family had to get 2 rooms. My husband, son and nephew had one room and my two daughters and I had one close by. There was a crew only area between our rooms. They had a different steward than we did.
We love early dining. We had 2 tables by the window for our group and Romeo was our server. He was very good. I think we got our food quicker than we have on some of our past cruises. We loved the meals in the Lincoln dining room.
We have always had very good food in the dining room on every Carnival cruise.
I decided to write down the desserts I liked the best so that I will remember for the next cruise. I waited till the last night for the warm chocolate melting cake because there were so many good desserts on the other nights. We sure do miss the good food!
We ordered room service a few times and it was delicious. We never waited over 15 minutes for it to be delivered.
There are so many different places to eat on the ship. Don't forget about Fish and Chips on the Panorama deck.
I didn't go to all the shows but most of the people who went enjoyed them. I didn't think they were as good as the Dream last year. The singers and dancers were very good though. We missed having brass players in the band in the Ivanhoe theater.
The Valor is a beautfiul ship. The only place I noticed signs of aging was in the bathroom-shower area and it wasn't bad. The ship was always spotless. The crew was constantly cleaning. The crew was always friendly no matter where they were working. Goose was a great cruise director.
My youngest daughter went to the past guest party. They drew her name for the free dinner for two at the Scarlett's steak house. She asked her brother to go with her and they really enjoyed the meal.
We watched one movie on the Lido deck big screen-Tangled. It was a great movie. It was a little cool that night and I wish I had taken a jacket.
I know there are other great things to say about the Valor. I will probably think of something I left out after I finish this review. We all enjoyed the cruise and wish we were back on the ship.
Our youngest daughter will be graduating from college next May and I am already looking for our next cruise to celebrate that.