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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2017
My husband and I cruised out of Baltimore on the Pride to Bermuda on July 2nd. This was our second time on this ship, but it previously hadn't had the 2.0 upgrades. The ship has changed some, but most of the Renaissance decor is the same. ... Read More
My husband and I cruised out of Baltimore on the Pride to Bermuda on July 2nd. This was our second time on this ship, but it previously hadn't had the 2.0 upgrades. The ship has changed some, but most of the Renaissance decor is the same. The ship was definitely kept clean. I enjoyed most of the food, especially Guy's burgers and dinner in David's Steakhouse. We chose to do My Time Dining. We requested to be seated in Darell's section each night. Our steward, Ketut, was friendly and kept our room clean. The entertainment on this cruise was much better than what we've seen on Carnival in the past. I enjoyed all of the joys. The singers were phenomenal. We enjoyed Bermuda. It was nice being there for 2 overnights. We didn't feel that we had to rush. It was very easy to take the mini bus to Horseshoe Bay Beach, which was gorgeous. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2017
One of the reasons I booked a cruise from Baltimore was to "sail" down the Chesapeake Bay but since this cruise was delayed by 7 hours, it was dark when that part of the cruise finally happened. I leave on the West Coast now ... Read More
One of the reasons I booked a cruise from Baltimore was to "sail" down the Chesapeake Bay but since this cruise was delayed by 7 hours, it was dark when that part of the cruise finally happened. I leave on the West Coast now but am from the DC area and missing that Bay experience was really disappointing. The reason for the delay was a "medical deviation" so I cannot fault Carnival since the safety of guests must come first, even if it resulted in a reduced experience for my experience. That aside, as usual, the crew members of Carnival did an amazing job and it was a nice trip. The TV in my cabin flickered while watching the channel that shows the location of the ship and all the info, and that was a bummer. Since Carnival does not ask for feedback after a cruise, I have not reported that problem. Everything else on the Pride was fine and I loved Bermuda and having a cruise to be docked in a great location at Dockyard and being able to come and go 24 hours for three days. Rented scooter and loved being able to park it right outside the ship at night to jump on it the next day. I would do this one again but hopefully without a disappointing delay. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
This is our 6th Carnival cruise and the 4th on the Pride. We love the Carnival Spirt Class ships. From the layout to the capacity. This cruise was sold out and we never felt crowded or have to wait long for anything except Muster and ... Read More
This is our 6th Carnival cruise and the 4th on the Pride. We love the Carnival Spirt Class ships. From the layout to the capacity. This cruise was sold out and we never felt crowded or have to wait long for anything except Muster and debarkation which is normal. The cruise terminal staff was quick and had us onboard in less than 20 minutes. Once we left the ship we were back in our car in less than 15 minutes. This was our first cruise to Bermuda and it was nice being able to enjoy the island each day and have place to come back to for a rest or a meal whenever we needed. The Kings Wharf / Royal Naval Dockyard area are great if you don't want to stray to far away and just want to shop and do a few activities. The shuttles, busses, taxis and ferries are all right there and can take you anywhere else you need to go. Even with a larger ship in port with us it was easy to get transportation without a long wait. We decide not to do any shore excursions because we had so much time on the island to do our own thing. The itinerary is not offered too often from Baltimore and was a nice option from the normal itinaries. We really enjoyed the extended time in port allowing us to explore and enjoy the island. Any of the staff and crew we interacted with on the Pride were always friendly and professional. The ship is in very good shape. They were always cleaning and doing repairs as needed to keep her tidy. It was disturbing to see that some guests seem to think the ship is their own toy. Damaging, defacing or just leaving trash anywhrere they please. The food and entertainment on the Pride was as good as the first time we cruised. I see others complain and can't understand why. It is what you make it. If I have ever needed something or had a concern I have asked the staff and they make it good and take care of it. We have already booked our next cruise on the Pride in less than 6 months. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2017
I can't say enough good things about the cruise my DH and I took to celebrate our 25th anniversary on the Carnival Pride. From the accommodations, to the friendly crew, to the Carnival Excursions, the entire experience was absolutely ... Read More
I can't say enough good things about the cruise my DH and I took to celebrate our 25th anniversary on the Carnival Pride. From the accommodations, to the friendly crew, to the Carnival Excursions, the entire experience was absolutely fantastic. This was only our second cruise (first back in 1999), but we've already booked 2 more! We boarded the ship in Baltimore - such an easy boarding experience. Then we enjoyed all the ship had to offer - Steakhouse reservations one evening, comedy shows throughout, a Behind the Fun tour, several stage shows, and the Cheers! drink package. Our waiters Francisco, Igusti, and Michele were so attentive and did a fabulous job making us feel spoiled. The Serenity Pool (though often crazy crowded) was a nice respite from the regular Lido deck pool. Our room #7192 was perfectly situated in the middle of everything, but was not at all noisy. The balcony was fantastic - so nice to be able to watch the ship pull into Bermuda and dock, then watch it all drift away as we sailed off. :( The Carnival Excursions, though somewhat pricey, were definitely worth it. Highly recommend the Restless Native Catamaran snorkeling excursion. We had a private cove all to ourselves to snorkel, look for seashells, or just float and enjoy paradise. The crew (Zander, Sam & Steve) were very personable and made us feel right at home. And the Rum Swizzles and freshly made chocolate chip cookies were perfect for the ride back. Also, the Horseshoe Bay excursion (though way too short) was an awesome experience. The driver even took us the long way back to the ship, past the Gibbs lighthouse, for some photo ops. Check out the Arts and Crafts market and the Ferry (within walking distance to the ship) - very nice! Also, visit Hamilton via the Ferry (only $4.00 one-way) and enjoy some of the amazing shops in town. I honestly can't wait to go back to Bermuda! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2016
Never been there before and the ship was suppose to be docked for 3 days ,. carnival estascy , cabin was noise from engines , away from couples we were traveling with ,not what we had ask for . Dining was also not what we requested due to ... Read More
Never been there before and the ship was suppose to be docked for 3 days ,. carnival estascy , cabin was noise from engines , away from couples we were traveling with ,not what we had ask for . Dining was also not what we requested due to many of party needing to have early dining we had to have it changed to anytime dining , food was most of the time prepared very good ,a few times orders were wrong or cold . Entertaiment was very good the shows are very good in the theater , activities were not as many this time as have been on other ships , i applaud the celebration for veteran days that the estascy did i am a veteran and i enjoyed it !!! Service did their best to make everyone feel at ease on a rocking ship due to rough seas and weather.the port of bermuda we had to leave a day early . For fear of wind . Bermuda was a little boring . Really feel very disappointed this cruise .but we will be cruising again!!!!!! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2016
Food was served cold most nights in the dining room. Guys was our savior. Food selection in dining room very limited. The entertainment or lack of, was horrible. The Floor shows are 2nd rate and they no longer have a show band. It's ... Read More
Food was served cold most nights in the dining room. Guys was our savior. Food selection in dining room very limited. The entertainment or lack of, was horrible. The Floor shows are 2nd rate and they no longer have a show band. It's obvious they are cutting corners and staff is limited. No nightlife except for the casino. The staff where all very friendly. They all really work hard to be helpful. The bars where under staffed and getting a drink was a challenge. The food has always been good on all of the previous cruises and I'm not a picky eater, most of it tasted like hospital food. Entertainment, Nightlife, Music, Floor Shows etc. where all absolutely a joke. This was a short but expensive Cruise and I knew when we had to wait 45 minutes to get in the dining room the first night, it wasn't looking good. I guess everyone else shared the same dining experience. We walked right in the next 2 nights and we opted out on the dining room the last 2 nights. The Fun Ship ain't no fun anymore! This was my 6th cruise with Carnival and unfortunately my last. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2016
only had to travel 15 minutes to port. Rooms were great, but received very poor service in anytime dining. Recommend people sign up for designated time. anytime dining is like a mase that is difficult to get through. Service was lousy and ... Read More
only had to travel 15 minutes to port. Rooms were great, but received very poor service in anytime dining. Recommend people sign up for designated time. anytime dining is like a mase that is difficult to get through. Service was lousy and food was not what we ordered. But I will definitely cruise the sunshine again. Overall we had a great time. Free drinks in the casino, cookies in the room, Free bottle of wine, and we won another cruise. You can't beat those odds. Our Cabin Steward was fantastic, and the help from guest services was terrific. Smoking areas were the best we have ever seen, as many people would agree. Loved the three levels of Serinety, as well as the late movies. Great cruise except for anytime dining, buffett was ok, but a lot of cold fish. Guys was fantastic as was the omlet bar for breakfast. As a former restaurant mgr., I can assure you the hot foods were not hot. Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2016
Before embarking on our cruise, I read a ton of reviews about the Carnival Sunshine and was shocked at how many were negative and sometimes over-the-top negative. It is a shame that those who felt the need to write such negative reviews ... Read More
Before embarking on our cruise, I read a ton of reviews about the Carnival Sunshine and was shocked at how many were negative and sometimes over-the-top negative. It is a shame that those who felt the need to write such negative reviews had such a miserable experience on what should be one of the best times of their lives. As with anything in life, our vacation was far from perfect but it was a heckuva lot of fun and I just wanted to share our mostly positive experience on the Carnival Sunshine as well as realistically and calmly addressing the less-than-perfect aspects of our cruise. We sailed the Carnival Sunshine 10/1 - 10/8 from New York City to Bermuda and back with 3 days in Bermuda. My wife and I were a little worried about this cruise since we have experienced crowded Carnival ships before with long lines and this ship recently added more cabins and took away common spaces when it was transformed from the Carnival Destiny to Carnival Sunshine. But, actually, we were pleasantly surprised with how well-designed the ship was. FOOD We rarely encountered long lines for any of the food we ate. Guy's Burger Joint is excellent and we were never more than 5th or 6th in line. Also, the line moves quickly and there are actually two lines approaching from either side of the place. The burgers are excellent, fresh and the topping bar lets you design it anyway you want. The Lido Buffet has multiple stations with the same food accessible from two sides so you can pick the quickest station and side. The assortment of food there is not great, much stuff gets repeated but there is usually a thing or two worth choosing. For breakfast, we would grab a thing or two from Lido then go to the Omelet station. There are two of them in the Havana Bar. We usually went to the one where Cucina Del Capitano is. We were never more than 3rd or 4th in line, each got an omelet then had them give us a few hash browns, sausage links, bacon, ham or whatever else they had there. We would eat in the Havana Bar which is quieter and more comfortable than the Lido eating area. For lunch, we alternated between Guy's Burgers or Cucina Del Capitano. At dinner time, Cucina Del Capitano is an upcharge restaurant but it is free for lunch. You get a menu from the maitre'd table, select your pasta and what ingredients you want in it including, chicken, garlic shrimp, Italian sausage, etc., then they give you a pager to summon you when it's ready. So you can go to the nearby Havana Bar, order a drink, take a few sips and then your lunch is ready. Their food is good and plentiful. For dinner, we would get a hot sandwich from the deli which only takes a minute or two to make and top that off with a few items from the Lido Buffet or just some pieces of cheese or bread if nothing looked very good. The deli hardly ever had a line and their sandwiches are very good, especially the turkey wrap or ham and cheese. We also got pizza once or twice. Sometimes the pizza counter had long lines but usually just a few people and it went fast. The pizza is nothing special but it's fine. We never set foot in the main dining room as we don't care about dressing up and we have no desire to sit an hour or two listening to the life stories of strangers while waiting for food that is overrated, over or under-cooked, often just lukewarm and sometimes cold, etc. We would rather get food that is not fancy but perfectly good so we can eat it and get back to whatever activities there are onboard. Each to their own. DRINKS We got the CHEERS drink program and were concerned about whether or not we would drink enough to make it worthwhile. It cost us $50 per day each plus gratuities for a total of about $690 for the 7 day cruise because we couldn't start using it until the second day due to some New York state law. We ended up getting about 75 drinks, almost all of them alcohol drinks so we figured we about broke even. The thing that made the CHEERS program worthwhile was that we never gave a thought to the cost when buying drinks. If we thought we only want half a drink or so, instead of not wasting the money, we just got it because it was already paid for. It gave us a kind of drink freedom. We read about it being tough to get a drink due to crowding at bars. That was occasionally true but not often. If we saw a bar that looked too crowded, we just looked for another bar. There are plenty of them. The drinks were uniformly excellent and the bartenders work very hard to make them so good. It is amazing the amount of work that goes into making some of the drinks and I was very impressed with the quality of the drinks and professional abilities and demeanor of the bartenders. ENTERTAINMENT We were disappointed a bit with the shows. The Playlist Production singers/dancers were just okay, nothing special. They did do a great job with the Epic Rock Show on the last night of the cruise. There was no magician on this cruise which was unusual. The shows are only about 45 minutes long which is shorter than they used to be but for the quality of these shows, it was about right. We enjoyed greatly the Hasbro Game Show and Love & Marriage show, mostly due to cruise director Emma Nixon's hosting ability and charm. She was delightful but I didn't see as much of her around the ship as I have of previous cruise directors. As to her staff, I saw very little of them also. Everything you read in reviews about the Limelight Lounge is true. You have to get there 20-30 minutes early to get seats where you can see the stage. If you get there too close to showtime, you will have to sit off to the side and watch the show on a TV screen. We saw two comedians, Larry Omaha and Lenny Schmidt. Lenny was okay but he had the bad habit of complaining when people didn't laugh at a joke he thought was funny. Larry Omaha was very funny and did a great job interacting with audience members without being mean-spirited or embarrassing them too much. Other than production shows and comedy, there were the usual trivia games where you honestly answer the questions, get 17 right out of 20 and lose to somebody who wrote the answers in as they were given. That gets old. They had a band called Deja Vu that sounded fairly good as we passed by them playing in Ocean Plaza a couple of times but we never caught there full act. We should have. Patrick is the piano player in the Piano Bar 88 and he is kind of snarky but very affable and entertaining. Beware, he has rules that must be obeyed! SMOKING We are smokers. Don't hate us. We were disappointed at how few places there were to smoke. You can smoke in about half of the casino and casino bar. If you are smoking on the wrong side of a pole at the casino bar, they will make you move. I enjoyed playing the poker machines (and did fairly well on them). There are 12 poker machines - 6 on each row back-to-back. The weird thing is that you can smoke at the 6 machines on one side but not the other. The casino was the only place you could smoke inside the ship. There were a lot of smokers on the ship so we were packed like sardines into one side of the casino bar and scattered around on empty slot machines, window sills, etc., anywhere we could find an ashtray. Outside, you could smoke in a small section on one side of deck 3 and a small section on one side of deck 10. There really should be one more bar in the ship, probably the sports bar since it was right off the casino, where smokers could smoke. POOL AREAS We didn't spend much time around the pool as we are not ones to bask in the sun but it seemed like a nice area and I often saw empty chairs. The Serenity Deck is fairly nice but it is hard to find an unoccupied chair near the pool on that deck. The one time we used the Serenity Deck pool, we used a couple of chairs just down the steps from there as they were the only ones available. Forget about getting the comfortable looking clamshell loungers as they are always taken or reserved. The serenity deck bar is kinda boring looking and since we couldn't smoke up there, we only got a drink there once. STATEROOM We had previously sailed on the Carnival Miracle and Legend which are similarly sized ships. The Carnival Sunshine is a bit smaller but it didn't feel small at all until we got to the stateroom. We had a balcony stateroom, number 8181, and found it to be smaller than ones we had on the other ships. Even though it was smaller, it still was more than adequate and, as always on Carnival, laid out intelligently so there is plenty of storage. The shower was a good size but the shower sill is right where your left foot would go when sitting on the toilet which was a bit inconvenient but hardly a deal-breaker. The bed was comfortable as always but the pillows were not firm enough for our liking. We ordered coffee, apple juice and danish from room service each night for the next morning and they were always on time or close to it. The coffee from room service is actually pretty darn good. I tried to get coffee from the Java Blue Cafe as that was included with our CHEERS package but they don't have regular coffee there. What they do is mix espresso with hot water and pass it off as American coffee. It was awful. However, their milkshakes which are free with the CHEERS package were excellent. Dadan was our room steward and, along with his assistant Anthony, they did a wonderful job keeping our room clean, our ice bucket filled, our towels replenished, answering our silly questions and of course, creating towel animals. Dadan is not the most expert towel-making steward we ever had and never stuck eyes on any of our towel animals but we enjoyed the animals and photographed them just the same. We left tips in an envelope with a thank-you note written on it every other day of the cruise. I am always concerned that if we don't leave our tip until the last day that the room steward will get concerned that we are going to stiff them and I don't want them worrying about that. EMBARKATION & DEBARKATION Embarkation felt like a nightmare as we stood in line for our Sail & Sign cards for about 45 minutes. While we stood in that line like cattle, people with disabilities were summoned in front of us as well, I imagine, as people who purchased the Faster to the Fun program. It seemed like we were there for an eternity. However, once we had our cards, it was not long before we were in line to board the ship and the whole process from parking lot to ship took a little over an hour which is probably not so bad. But it's so hard to just stand there and watch people who arrived after you get ushered past you. Debarkation was pretty smooth. We each had one suitcase and one carryon. We checked our suitcases in for embarkation but walked them out for debarkation. We stayed in our cabin until the last minute before we were supposed to leave at 8:30. We found an elevator to the atrium lobby after a few minutes and found a couple chairs there to wait. Deck 8 was supposed to leave the ship at 9:15 but a Carnival employee came up to us at about 9:00 and told use we could disembark. After a long walk along the ship and a long cattle call round-and-round to hand our declaration slip to Customs, we were up to the parking lot by about 9:30. An hour from room to parking lot is not bad. BERMUDA & SCOOTERS We never ever do cruise line shore excursions. We do not enjoy being led around and subject to the whims and schedules of others. We prefer to find our own way around and enjoy the freedom to explore when and where we wish. Again, each to their own. Bermuda is beautiful! It's a fairly long walk from where the ship is docked at Kings Wharf to the stores and ferry but not too bad. They had a free shuttle but it didn't seem worth the wait to us. On our first day, we took the ferry to Hamilton to shop. We walked around Hamilton for a couple dozen blocks and did not find much interesting in the way of shopping. We did stop at a nice Irish pub named Flanagan's for a drink on the balcony overlooking the street and harbor which was pleasant. On our second day, we rented scooters to tour the island. We had read many reviews about how dangerous it is to ride scooters in Bermuda and were a bit nervous. My wife was not that experienced as she had only ridden a scooter once before years ago but the instructors at Oleander Cycles there at the port were very friendly, patient and helpful. They had her ride around the block three times before declaring her fit to ride. We decided to go to the Bermuda Aquarium & Zoo which was almost 17 miles away. That ride took us about an hour and a half as we kept pulling over to let traffic go by as it got nerve-wracking with so many cars, trucks and buses coming up on us. The aquarium/zoo was fairly small but only cost $10 each and was absolutely delightful. The had seals, an alligator, flamingos, tamarin monkees, giant tortoises, parrots, and assorted other colorful birds, reptiles and fish. We really enjoyed ourselves there. The snack bar was expensive but the burgers and fries were tasty. After leaving the zoo, we headed to Horseshoe Bay Beach. If you go there by bus, they let you off at the top of a long, steep hill which you have to walk down and back up again. With scooters, you can go to the bottom near the beach to park. The beach was spectacular! The water was a perfect temperature even in October with nice waves for body surfing. The sand is supposed to be pink but it looked like regular sand to me with red grains in it which I guess gives it a pink hue in certain conditions or lighting. We then headed back to the ship and ended up putting 35 miles each on our scooters for the day which doesn't sound like a lot but we felt every mile of it. Three times during our trip when we stopped, Bermudan citizens turned around and came over to check on us to see if we needed anything. Twice, a couple of nice Bermudan gentlemen also on scooters gave us helpful directions. The third time, it was a woman in a car with her friend who saw us looking out over the water toward the Royal Caribbean Anthem of the Seas which was leaving the port and the woman thought we missed our ship. She was prepared to give us a ride or offer whatever help we needed. The citizens of Bermuda are the friendliest we have encountered in any of our travels. The scooters we rented were for 24 hours so we were able to park them at our ship and go out the next morning to do some shopping around the port before returning them to Oleander Cycles. Overall, we found the scooters to be an incredible adventure that we will always remember. It is hard to get used to driving on the left side of the road but we did. There was one time I looked the wrong way and pulled out into oncoming traffic that I hadn't noticed. There was one time where a truck came way over into our lane and almost ran us off the road. The reason why we found the scooters to be a great adventure is because we survived the experience without falling or getting hurt. We realize that we were lucky as many people do get hurt on scooters in Bermuda and we would think very hard before taking that chance again. Still, though, a great memory! We were planning to rent a Boston Whaler on our third day and tool around the harbor but Carnival decided to cut our day short by 5 hours due to perceived threats from Hurricane Matthew and Tropical Storm Nicole. Neither storm was anywhere near the vicinity and we felt it was just Carnival preferring we spend that extra 5 hours worth of money on their ship instead of in the port. Hurricane Matthew never did threaten Bermuda but Tropical Storm Nicole became a hurricane a week later and did substantial damage to Bermuda. I hope the nice people we met and everyone else there came through as best as can be expected. OVERALL EXPERIENCE My wife and I have thoroughly enjoyed all four cruises we have taken and plan to cruise again. We may try the Norwegian Breakaway as they also sail from New York and we have never sailed on anything but Carnival but we would not hesitate for a second to cruise Carnival again or the Carnival Sunshine. I believe to give something a five-star rating, it has to be just about perfect and few things are. I gave this cruise four stars but if I had the option, I probably would have given it 4.5 stars. I hope this review has been helpful and I hope everybody who reads this review will enjoy their cruises as much as we did. Bon voyage! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2016
This was my second Carnival cruise, but the first leaving from Manhattan. Living in NJ, it was very convenient. I opted for car service over the train and it worked well. The first time a I traveled solo and this time I traveled with a ... Read More
This was my second Carnival cruise, but the first leaving from Manhattan. Living in NJ, it was very convenient. I opted for car service over the train and it worked well. The first time a I traveled solo and this time I traveled with a coworker/friend. We had the 1-1:30 embarkation window and arrived pretty much at 1pm. There were lines, but that was not unexpected. Embarkation went smoothly. By the time we go on board, the rooms were ready so we directly there. I was pleased with the room (more below). It was a cool, gray day but we did head outside to take in the sights heading out of the city. It was warm enough to lay out at the pool starting the next morning and through the final sea day of the cruise. Spa--we were in a spa room so I took advantage of what came with it. I used the Thermal Suite as much as I could and did 2 free yoga classes (one class was cancelled since the ship was rocking too much). I also did 2 sessions of "Body Sculpt Boot Camp" -- great workout, but walking was not fun after the first session (pulled muscles). I also took advantage of the free sunrise stretch class and the free abs class as much as possible. To reward myself, I did get a mini-facial and reflexology on a special. Dining-We at in the MDR, Lido buffet and had room service. The food was fine. I was able to find something to eat wherever we were. We had your time dining and only waited on line once to check in for dinner. Enjoyed an adult milkshake at the coffee/dessert cafe on deck 5. Also enjoyed cocktails at the Alchemy Bar. Entertainment-My friend saw the show on the first night and said it was ok. I went to the rock show and left. I thought is was pretty bad. I did go to a trivia game and had fun. On sea days, laying out at the pool was our main form of entertainment. Service-No complaints. Bermuda was the only port on this cruise. We didn't book any excursions through the ship, so I can't speak for how they went. We booked a rum cruise ahead of time as well as a walking tour in St. George. While on the island, we booked a glass bottom boat tour (nighttime). I was pleased with all. It was really hot and humid, so sightseeing was a sweaty venture! We used the public ferry and bus to get around. Unfortunately our last day in port was cut short (noon instead of 5pm) due to the storms in the area. We visited the National Museum which is very close to where we docked. I recommend for the views alone! Debarkation went smoothly. We arrived home to the same gray, cool day as the day we left. Four ships were docked the same morning, so there were a lot of people out on the street. Even so, I would leave from NYC again simply because I don't have to worry about a flight. Read Less
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