I will start off by saying Carnival is probably our least favorite cruise line. This being said, there always has to be a best and worst cruise. But the worst cruise is still better than being at work. I would have to rate this cruise as one of our two worst cruises. We are 48 & 43 and been on 15 plus cruises.
We have never left from the Tampa port and it is VERY different from Miami or Ft. Lauderdale.
Getting to the port and getting on the ship was typical. Lines were not bad and we were in our room in less than 30 minutes from reaching the Carnival port building.
Actually was VERY impressed with the way the ship looked. The atrium was very nice for a smaller and older ship. Must have took forever to wire this ship with the fiber optics used all over the ship. Overall the ship is still very nice for an old one.
Being smaller and most all activities within 3 decks it did become crowded at times.
If you are looking for lots of pool time this is not the ship for you. Very small pools with not many chairs that are what I would call 'pool side'. About half the main pool area is taken up by a big stage and dance floor/show area. The back pool is nothing more than an oversized hot tub with a hot tub on both sides.
Will have to rate the room we had as very BAD. 1) The suitcases will not even fit under the beds. Never seen this before, so your limited space is taken up by your suitcase. 2) The lifejackets are stored in a corner wood case that you have to CRAWL over to get to one side of the bed. So more wasted space and not sure how some folks that have trouble getting around even get into that side of the bed without crawling over each other. 3) TV is still a small tube that is in a big wood box thing that does not have good viewing angles. (oh by the way the tv movie service, 2 channels, was out TWICE in five days) 4) NO hair dryers in the room. NEVER not had a hair dryer in the room. NO big deal if they would have mentioned that, so you could bring one. So you are calling your cabin guy every day you need one and he is chasing the few they have down from another cabin. 5) NO thermostats in the room, just off and on for cold air only. (and they keep this ship COLD) 6) Our room did have a locker room smell to it. Nothing terrible and they did try to get rid of it but would only use an ionizer thing...NO chemicals. 7) The bathroom was nice sized and the shower was one of the best we have ever had on a cruise.
Don't go on this cruise if you are there for the food.
The buffet area:
This is a horrible set up and crowded as heck. The food is average and hard to get too. Two buffet lines the same (if open) in the back area, two buffets out by the pool (one burgers - one stir fry type?) if I remember right. Then in back pizza (if they had any ready) and a always long line for the one person fresh sandwich area. Then 2 salad bars on each side and a desert area. Breakfast & lunch food was almost always the same with a few exceptions. At 11:15 (on a sea day FULL ship) only 1 buffet line was open with a line that went on forever. AT 8:30 one nite only ONE buffet of the four open again LONG line. Breakfast lines were not horrible other than they put the omelet station RIGHT in the middle of the line so backups were bad there. Overall we ended up using room service most of the time and believe it or not this was almost as quick.
This was not too bad, but being a 5 day and not a 7 day cruise you don't get the good stuff so remember that going in.
As with most cruises service is always good. The staff on most ships try thier best to do a great job and help in anyway they can. The staff on this ship are lots of fun and do a great job.
The main show lounge shows are below what we are used to. The comedy club was fun (we do like this about Carnival). The bands were ok and the dance clubs are fine. You can find something to do on this ship but it is somewhat limited due to the size of the ship.
Just was not impressed with much about this cruise. Still a LOT better than being at work though.