This was my second Carnival cruise (the first one being on the Dream) and I so much preferred this smaller ship, I am ready to go again! Leaving out of Jacksonville is so easy and convenient. The port itself is nothing fancy but it was very easy to check in, and we were on board by 11:30 AM. Our cabin was not ready and the staff frequently reminded us that our cabins would not be ready until 1:30 but we should all go up to the Lido deck and lunch was being served. My husband and I readied ourselves for a long line and no seats as was our experience on our previous Carnival cruise on the Dream but we were pleasantly surprised. There were no lines and there were plenty of seats! We ate a leisurely lunch and while he sat at the table I went exploring. The ship was very clean and it was very easy to find myself around. The staff were all very friendly and accommodating. Our cabin was on the Riviera Deck (4), outside and just off the elevators. The room was larger than I had expected and the shower was the largest of any of the other ships I have been on.
The food was good, but not 5 star by any means. Portions were adequate and I saw many other passengers get multiple servings. I really enjoyed the sushi bar and Mongolian Grill. There are no specialty restaurants on this ship. The wait staff were attentive and very friendly as well. We had "anytime" dining and we enjoyed sitting with different people each night.
The fitness center was small and it never appeared full or crowded to me. I did take 2 spinning classes and the instructor was okay. I was not overly impressed with him and he did not ride the bike with us. I did not like this at all. His excuse was so that he would watch us and make sure our form was correct and assist any rider if they had problems.
Our ports were Key West and Nassau. We did not take any excursions. In Key West we talked around ourselves and took a trolley tour for $20 per person, for an hour with hop on and off. Much much cheaper than booking the excursion on the ship. Nassau, we hopped in a cab for $4/pp and went over to Atlantis. We could walk through the casino and some of the lobby but not the entire complex. We then walked over to the public beach, rented 2 lounge chairs for $10 each, and relaxed.
The evening entertainment was somewhat lacking compared to other cruises I have been on. There were only 2 "shows" with the singers and dancers. One other night was the passenger talent show which I passed on. The comedy club was fun and the "adult" comedy very funny.
All in all this was a relaxing vacation. I really enjoyed Serenity, the adults only areas. Wish there was a pool there but there was only 2 hot tubs.
This was only my second Carnival cruise an like I said in my first sentence, this one was so much better than the Dream. The ship is smaller and more intimate, no lines and I never felt crowded. I would definitely cruise this ship again.