We flew in a night before to San Juan. I won't bore you with the long details of delayed flights and lost luggage. It was our family (husband, self and 2 daughters 12 and 7) and another family. This was our 2nd time on the Victory, but first time sailing out of P.R.
Cabin: We were on the main deck. We had two adjoining ocean view cabins for our family. The rooms seemed quite spacious. With Carnival most of the time you may as well get 2 cabins as it wouldn't save us much to do one cabin for four. I think the difference was $200. We loved have 2x's the storage space. Definitely do two cabins again for the right price.
Dining: We were in the Pacific dining room at the back of the ship. What a pretty room. Windows were all around. We had a table for 8 on the lower level looking out the back of the ship. Food was very good in the dining room. I like the fact you can branch out and try new things. All of the chicken dishes were really good. Chinese food was yummy and the pizza on Lido was always great at 1AM. All of us like the Reubens at the grill, you can also ask for a turkey Reuben. I had this three times during the cruise! The only bad thing about our table in the evening was that you couldn't see the servers dancing as well.
Activities/Entertainment: There were many things to do depending on what you like. We loved the water slide. There are many early risers who like to save chairs. All three of the pools and whirlpools were nice. The deck parties on the ship were hopping. Get there early if you want a place to sit. I had heard that since the ship sails out of Puerto Rico, the nightlife is much better. I found this to be true!
Ports/Shore Excursions: San Juan-Departed here at 10PM. This night was open dining in the dining rooms due to the late departure time. Getting on the ship in San Juan was fairly easy, we were onboard by noon.
St. Thomas was our second port. We had a prearranged tour with Godfrey tours. Godfrey picked us up at the gate for our open air tour. The first 2 hours we spent shopping in town. I personally didn't care for the shopping as it seemed to be mostly jewelry stores. Godfrey then picked us back up at 11 and took us to the Bannana Daquiri store that overlooks Magen's Bay. They had very yummy drinks here. Of course plan on paying for them nicely! Godfrey also provided soft drinks on the tour. Next stop was Magen's Bay. It was an overcast day so not the prettiest day but still enjoyable for hanging out on the beach. If you go to Magen's Bay you must get the pizza from the snack shop. It is about $20 for the whole pizza, it is the best pizza ever. It may have something to do with eating it on the beach!
Our next day was a day at sea. It was spent exploring the ship and just relaxing!
Barbados-Catamaran-we originally booked with Captain Ron but it ended up being overbooked. Captain Ron then made arrangements with another company. We went on Stiletto with Captain Graham. We had a great time so everything worked out fine. The water here is so beautiful. The banana bread was great. We snorkeled over 2 ship wrecks.
St. Lucia was our next port. What a pretty island! James from Steelers touring spent the day with us showing us around his lovely island. James was great along with his driver. He took us places that ship tours do not go. We were able to experience things first hand and up close. He even picked several cashews that everyone could try. Never knew you could get juice from a cashew fruit. We also saw the banana plantations and had sugar bananas. We did the north tour as we were concerned about car sickness on the other tour. The one thing we tried that was really unique was banana ketchup. We ate it on chips my family really liked it but the other family that was with us didn't like it very well. We went to several different lookout points that were fabulous. Make sure you ask James about the white and blue coconuts! He always kept us well supplied with drinks too. We also went to a beach, that we really enjoyed. James was very knowledgable and friendly. My husband asked James to stop at a local food vendor that he would recommend. He did and the food was really good. Hope to see him again the next time we make it to St. Lucia!
St. Kitts was our next stop. Here we decided to take a taxi to the Marriott on Frigate Bay. We did not pay for a day pass, we just walked through the hotel to the beach. One of the staff members set us up with beach chairs for the day. When the day was over we gave him a nice tip. He also let us use hotel towels so we would blend in. We purchased food and drink from the hotel restaurant throughout the day. The beach was great, we walked up and down it. Very peaceful and relaxing.
Our last day we stopped at St. Martin/St. Maarten. Here we took an ATV excursion through island marketing.
I had never been on an ATV before so this was quite an experience. Our girls each rode on the back of one of our ATV's. We had a guide that led us around the island to Orient beach. The beach was so nice I would have liked to go back there after the tour was over. Orient Beach was quite the experience though due to the optional clothing on some parts of the beach. Definitely a learning experience!
Overall: Wonderful! This cruise was very port intensive. We came home feeling like we needed a vacation. We are already booked on another Carnival cruise!