We started on the east coast. We got the last plane out of JFK before it closed for the hurricane. There were 4 of us all experienced cruisers. It was my wife's 10th cruise on Carnival. So sh e became platinum. I booked the cruise on line and decided to stay one night on the Queen Mary. What a beautiful old ship. It just speaks of a different time, beautiful and nostalgic. We left the Queen about 10:30am The bellman took our bags right over to the Splendor and gave them to the porters. I returned the car to LAX. Then took the Carnival bus back to the Splendor. The rest of our party went to the VIP lounge and were on board by 12 noon.
I returned to check in and since the wife was platinum I had the same VIP express check in. The splendor was in fine shape. We ate on the lido deck and went to our cabins about 1:30. Cabin was an outside with picture window. Our baggage arrived about 2PM. We unpacked and the room was typical carnival well laid out plenty of space. Noticed that the bathroom had less free things there than in the past. Our room steward was really good fast and very accommodating. Whatever we needed he was there.
We ate most meals in the black pearl dining room the service was really good. The waters and attendants really worked hard. Did not try the speciality restaurants. There was no need the food and presentation were always well done. Our only complaint is that we asked for a large table and were given a table for four. We find a large table really fun meeting all types of different people. The chocolate melting cake is outstanding but so rich I could not finish it. We only had 2 ports of call Cabo and Puerto Vallarta. For safety reasons Carnival stopped going to Mazaplan. We would have liked to go to more ports in Mexico. The second day in Cabo was too much. We did take 2 shore excursions from the ship. One in Cabo and one in Puerto Vallarta. The one in Cabo was just ok. it Was Cabo by land and sea. They took us out to the arch by boat very nice. Then we went to a glass blowing demonstration. We then went to a nice old church. The temperature was 96 humidity 95 really hot.
Then on the way back to the ship we were taken to the cactus nursery. I almost forgot we stopped at a restaurant with a beautiful view for a snack
very scenic. The next shore excursion was in Puerto Vallarta. It was much better. It was called San Sebastian it was 7 hours and worth every penny. Our group of 8 was taken by boat to a private van with good ac. We went up into the mountains about 45 miles. The weather was cool. Roads not so good. Our driver was excellent also the guide. They both spoke perfect English. We visited a hacienda owned by John Ford the Hollywood director. It was beautiful and very remote no electric or ac needed. We then were then taken to a small village in the mountains. San Sebastian it was like a Mexican williamsburg. The people astill lived in the houses of their ancestors. But now had electric and running water. We had a very good lunch there. On the way back we stopped at a small Tequila factory we had as many free samples as we wanted. Some of us slept all the way back to the ship.
We had two more relaxing days at sea before debarkation in Long Beach. We were in the first group off in the VIP line. We had an early flight out. This was a memorable cruise.