This was my third cruise, and my second cruise on Freedom. This time around, we traveled with six friends that had never cruised, and they are now hooked on cruising! We stayed at The Best Western Plus Oakland Park Inn Ft.Lauderdale. The hotel was an older establishment, but with modern updates and decor. Friendly staff eager to help with any question we had. The pool and landscaping were very nice. The Ports we visited were: St. Thomas, Antigua, Tortola, and The Bahamas. Antigua was by far my favorite destination on this cruise. We all went to a beautiful place called Jolly Beach Resort and spent the afternoon in the pools and the ocean. The employees were quite helpful and friendly, and the food was delicious! They have an outside (covered) cooking area, and will cook your food to order. They had snorkeling, sailing, and other water activities available as well. It was one of the most beautiful beaches I've ever seen.
St. Thomas was awesome, as usual. Tortola was nice, but not my favorite Port.
I love going to the Bahamas because it is one of the most beautiful places you can visit. That said, I'd like to mention that Atlantis now has extremely limited access to visitors if you are not staying as a guest at the resort. We basically walked to some of the interior shops, through the casino, and that's where we were denied any further access. They won't even let you visit the restaurant unless you are a guest. We did not visit the beach this time, but in my opinion, it is one of the best beaches in The Caribbean. I do not remember the name of the gift shop I visited just before I returned to the ship, but I bought a couple of hand painted items from a local artist. I was very pleased with her talent. Amazing work and prices were reasonable. My friends had two young teens, and they were all very pleased with the activities on board that Carnival supplied. No complaints there! As always, Carnival kept its staff quite busy, continually cleaning the ship 24/7. Super friendly employees that were always eager to help with anything you might need. The Cruise Director, Jacques, was the best one ever! The food was good. No complaints. Wait staff was amazing! If you've never been on this class of ship, or any of these ports, I highly recommend it! You won't be disappointed.