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3 Carnival Africa Cruise Reviews

I rarely take the time to write reviews, but I think that cruises are something that a lot of people depend on reviews to help them in their choice. I am the same way, and I should have paid closer attention I guess. We sailed very ... Read More
I rarely take the time to write reviews, but I think that cruises are something that a lot of people depend on reviews to help them in their choice. I am the same way, and I should have paid closer attention I guess. We sailed very recently on at the end of August 2019. So to start off, Carnival Valor is an older ship built in 2004 I believe, and it does show outside and inside of the cruise liner. On the outside appearance there is quite a bit of rust showing on the hull and a lot of over painting of rust areas. The deck areas seem in decent shape, and they work hard to keep the surfaces clean. The inside stateroom, we had a balcony stateroom, there are several issues. There are light switches missing, or pushed into the receptacles, lights not working, lights blinking, receptacles not working, and very few of them, stains on carpet, and I think every glass on the outside of ship had not been cleaned in quite some time. The main attraction decks, 3,4, and 5 were actually pretty nice, but there was always elevators out of service, so wait times were sometimes up to 10 minutes, so be prepared for stair usage. The dining areas just seemed dated, almost a 1950's maybe 60's look to them, and just did not give you that wow feeling around the buffet areas, but the main dining room, Lincoln, was in nice shape, and had a comfortable feeling to it. There is a lot of 4 person booths, so do not expect to be sitting with a large group of people, and meeting over dinner. I am going to do my best and be nice about the food, cause hey, that's why we do cruises right. Well, to be honest the main dining food was just, NOT GOOD! Appetizers, yeah very, very small portions, you will need to order more than 1, like the shrimp cocktail comes with 5 very small shrimp, fried calamari you will get 3 as well.. The main courses, are always a treat, if they are tasty, but sadly not so. The taste of most items were bland, or just not worth eating, and most of the time we left over half of it on the plate, and left the dining hall before dessert. The salads were OK, but it seemed they used store bought type dressings, and sometimes they would have a smell as if they had been left out too long, my wife even felt a little sick after eating a Cesar salad one evening. We tried the buffet a few times because of our dining hall experiences, and it was worse off that the main dining. I cannot recommend eating the buffet unless it's for the breakfast which was actually good. We basically survived for 5 days by eating Guy's Burger shack ( Delicious by the way ), and the pizza shack. I know it's sad, but actually enjoyed the room service sandwiches more than the main dinning. We will move into the entertainment portion, and i only have a few words on it. The shows we watched were enjoyable, fun, and well entertaining, so I can't knock them on that. I think the entertainment is what saved the trip overall. The services by the employees were top notch as expected, and our stateroom was always taken care of by our room steward Putrauwn. He provided excellent service, and knew our names every time we met in the hall. Ports and Shore excursions. Whew, were to start.. Cozumel, beautiful water, nice people, and very enjoyable. We went on the Passion Isles excursion, but I cannot recommend this experience for the price point. There is boat ride to the isle, and that will use up 45 minutes of your time if your lucky, then a couple meetings later, a hour and a half has gone my of your time, and your finally able to go get a place on the beach. This is an all inclusive excursion, well somewhat.. The free drinks are out of coolers that are just awful, if you want any frozen drink, it's 8 bucks a pop, want some goggles for a little snorkeling in the small swimming are, 10 bucks. Oh, don't forget about the 4 photo ops you must make before you get your seats, they come round for 12 bucks a photo. Then you get the massage ladies that will what feels like hound you , us 7 times, for a 30 minute massage for 50 bucks. I cannot say to eat the buffet food, birds everywhere and flies. We saw a bird dive right into one of the buffet trays, and take food, and nothing was done. The food was also not very good for what we tried. There is a nice little shopping area the locals have setup on the isle for some souvenirs, but if you get close, they come at you like street vendors. So, we made it through a couple hours of beach time, and now we have to make the 45 minute ride back to the port area. Yes, that is deducted from your 5 hours total time for the excursion. Lets move on, to Progresso!! Progresso, very nice people, and you can get your start right off the bat. We did another excursion, The all inclusive beach, and it's all inclusive... There is a 30 minute bus ride to the location, which is deducted from total time but hey the pier is 6 miles long as well, so at least no walking. You get to the beach house, with 2 pools, 2 bars, lots of space and fantastic food. You do not need to walk to any bar, the workers take such good care of you, and oh yeah, all your frozen drinks are free as well.I forgot to mention, it's a FULL OPEN BAR, not just some lousy whiskey or no name drinks... You can go here without a single dime in your pocket, cause you don't need it, unless you want to tip or get a massage, 30 bucks 30 minutes, which we were never asked to get. I will definitely go back to this location. I really wish I could rate this higher, but due to the extra cost of everything, and the Poor, Poor food quality, and the state of the staterooms, I just can't. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We were traveling as a once in a lifetime family vacation. We have boys with wide age differences (29 to 14yrs) so getting everyone in one place that provides every level of entertainment was a challenge. We purchased FTTF which is worth ... Read More
We were traveling as a once in a lifetime family vacation. We have boys with wide age differences (29 to 14yrs) so getting everyone in one place that provides every level of entertainment was a challenge. We purchased FTTF which is worth the money (especially for a trip like this where standing in lines would make everyone cranky)so embarking and disembarkation were smooth. My 14yr old did not choose to enroll in camp (wish I could have forced him- it is so much fun for the kids and they are occupied and NOT by you) but he wanted to spend time with his brothers so I couldn't argue that, but in the past we have made a deal that is he spent 2hrs and didn't want to do it we would not make him-and he has never chosen not to enroll before-make your kids join. Food was as always plentiful and very good. Our 1st port was Cozmel and we chose a beach snorkel and lunch which was perfect -it was just the right time, the food was great and the tequila tasting was fun and informative-they were very accommodating of our 14yr old as well. The excursion in Progresso was the issue> started by being gathered in the dining room where our excursion staff spent the entire 45 min wait for our turn playing with little kids and singing shark, shark -sorry I don't mind occupying littles but they ignored all the rest of us and never gave info or answered questions so then down to the docks which were crazy and they couldn't seem to get us into correct size groups-ok not starting good but still optimistic. Get to the van and they have water and snack-very nice but the van is maxed on occupancy and non of us fit -the seats are grinding into our knees and everyone is trying to turn sideways to sit> off we go , driver speaks NO English no one on our bus speaks Spanish, we have a guide on with us who is giving us a description which is cool but all of a sudden we are at a police check point with full garb -guns over the shoulders-everything , and our guide says " I have to leave you now this is a police state" -what does that mean , he grabs some money off the dashboard-gets off and doesn't come back-we drive away. We try asking our driver and he speaks no English -I have my entire family on and no idea if we are safe or not! I am watching signs and we are still going towards Chichen Itza so I am not totally panicking so suddenly we are pulling over to the side of the road and stopping for times- the driver makes us understand another van is lost, we make him understand one of our travelers has to go to the bathroom (thank goodness I knew the word bano -and I'm not kidding) we stop at a roadside gas station and go again, we actually got to the ruins and our guide as well as others were there but they just rushed us through as we had lost time, we were maybe there 30 min's (our guide was actually with us-he had tried to tell us to walk around ourselves but people kept asking him questions so we did get to hear some about the ruins). Back in the vans and off to the Cenote swim, we were to have buffet lunch there, we have 45 min total to change /swim /change /eat and be back on the bus -WHY EVEN DO THIS? if you can't accomplish an actual excursion don't offer it! OK we change , we swim, we grab food -we are told if we are not at the van on time we will be left -now there are other tourists that are hanging out-we are literally on the van as they are going to eat -apparently someone waited for them. So ride back -still no guide , as we are traveling our driver is visibly nervous and we pull up on another police checkpoint and they are pulling people out of cars and have guns and dogs -these appear to be tourists, we are again scared to death , we manage to get through and are flying down the highways, we get to a pull off and our driver stops and our guide jumps on -he says we are late and the ship will not wait> we were all like we bought this through Carnival because they wait he say no-no they won't wait, the ship must pay too much to be here after they are supposed to - we have to hurry, so we pull in to the pier and run like crazy, through the market place which is locked up and they get us through some back door and out to the pier- the ship is ready to deport and there is a plank down but there is what looks like a higher member of ship crew arguing with a woman in a business suit and she is yelling run and he is speaking what is I think Italian but it is obvious he wants to pull in the gangplank. We get on and I will be honest I went right to my room to cry -this was an extremely expensive excursion and I was just done, no one in my family even wanted to talk about it. I went down to the excursion desk about 2 hrs later and told them what happened and a gentleman identifying himself as the excrusion crew manager stated he was on the excursion and it was absolutely perfect , he said he was at the pier when we got out and made sure everyone knew it was just fine- I have no idea where he was but he was NOT on our van or in the vicinity when we pulled up and he certainly did not make sure we knew it was ok. I filed a formal complaint and Carnival informed me they excursions are not a part of them -it is seperate , the excursion company sent me a letter about 4 wks after my cruise stating my complaint was unsubstantiated. CRAZY!! Do not trust anything they market -this was terrible!! When we talk about our trip no one every brings up that day-it was simply best left not talked about and I have waited 8 months to write this to calm down but I am just as mad about the whole thing yet today. We will travel with Carnival again but we will never trust their excursion team!! Noting the cruise itself was for New Years Eve and the boarding was smooth, we had faster to the fun for all our rooms so getting to the cabin was a breeze. My adult kids had fun and loved the casino. Wish my teenage son would have joined club -but he chose not to this time (club is great if you can make them go). Food was really a hit with all boys and the drink package was great for the adult 2- they used every drink allowed. Our Cabins were perfect we had a balcony for hubby, myself and 14yr old and the boys had inside plenty of room in both for all of us. Service folks are absolutely excellent ,never had any issues , cabin was always clean and ready for us. Our experience with director was one of the low points -really wanted to join in and be involved but he really focused on a different group. All in all we will cruise again -in fact in a few months, we will also use excursions just won't trust the advertising and keep it to very basic. Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
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