20 Carnival Miracle Cruise Reviews for Senior Cruises to Mexican Riviera

We were visiting our son in San Diego and decided that instead of renting a place, we would all go on a Mexican Riviera cruise. The embarkation and debarkation were smooth and fast, even with no FTTF available. The shows, food in MDR, ... Read More
We were visiting our son in San Diego and decided that instead of renting a place, we would all go on a Mexican Riviera cruise. The embarkation and debarkation were smooth and fast, even with no FTTF available. The shows, food in MDR, ports, and entire experience was amazing. Our favorite was the Rhythm of the Nights in PV. We loved it so much we booked another cruise on the Miracle for next December. The service was phenomenal. I loved the layout of the ship. You didn't have to walk up over and down to get to the dining room! We ate in the steakhouse and the food was superb. We especially liked the Alchemy Bar and the drinks and service there. It is a good place to wait before going in the MDR. There are many places to sit quietly and get away from the crowds (although in my opinion there were no crowds). The casino was smoky though, so be aware when walking through. I highly recommend the Miracle if you like a small, cozy atmosphere for sailing. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
This was our second cruise with Carnival. Our experience was beyond expectations. Our cabin steward Henry was very accommodating and helpful. I had requested some bathrobes and said the next day would be fine. When we came back from brunch ... Read More
This was our second cruise with Carnival. Our experience was beyond expectations. Our cabin steward Henry was very accommodating and helpful. I had requested some bathrobes and said the next day would be fine. When we came back from brunch there they were. Our cabin was on the Panorama deck, room 8250. It was a perfect location. One flight of stairs up and we were on the serenity deck enjoying some drinks and peace and quiet. Our first night we dined and Nick and Nora’s. The atmosphere, service, and food was way beyond our expectations. So much so that we booked an additional reservation for the end of our cruise. The main dining room was awesome. Our head waiter Eduardo was always smiling and making sure we were completely satisfied with our dining experience. We requested his section for all of our breakfasts and dinner meals. Our favorite bar was by far the Alchemy Bar. Katie was totally entertaining and always smiling. The only negative we experienced was in the Red Frog Pub on karaoke night. We were sitting at a table and the female server had an attitude with us because we would not buy the more expensive larger drinks they offered. I had to go to the bar to order a drink fir my wife and myself. Other than that the entire cruise was exceptional. We are planning on a 5 day cruise next year followed by the 15 day Hawaii cruise in 2021. Carnival Miracle will akways be our ship of choice. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
The itinerary was what we wanted, which we enjoyed. I found they nickeled and dimed you more than other ships I have been on. Really to charge you for distilled water. It's an inexpensive cruise and that's what you're ... Read More
The itinerary was what we wanted, which we enjoyed. I found they nickeled and dimed you more than other ships I have been on. Really to charge you for distilled water. It's an inexpensive cruise and that's what you're getting. We usually travel Royal and we can see a definite difference in service and quality of food. The lobster night (my husbands favorite) was a total disappointment. The first one he got was just ok and the second one was mushy, not tasty at all. He couldn't even finish it. Over cooked. Which was a real disappointment for him. The other nights the food was from just okay to good. Never once did I walk out of the dinning room to say wow totally enjoyed that. I think we will be sticking to Royal from now on. Never saw our room steward. Our waiter was very nice and friendly but for someone who has worked on the ship for 10 years, the level of service wasn't there. The entertainment was good. No real complaints with that. The comedian did get a bit raunchy for my liking, I always say a good comedian doesn't have to resort to voguer or be raunchy to be funny. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
This is a smaller ship so therefore less people and I had a great time. The Christmas activities were really nice. My cabin stewards were great despite the amount of cabins they were servicing, and my cabin was well serviced. Room ... Read More
This is a smaller ship so therefore less people and I had a great time. The Christmas activities were really nice. My cabin stewards were great despite the amount of cabins they were servicing, and my cabin was well serviced. Room service was on time and very friendly. The dining room staff were awesome and super fast delivery of food or drinks. I am booked back on this same ship next Christmas The cabin is an accessible one which I need as a am an above knee amputee. The roll in shower works really well with a nice big bench. There are plenty of grab bars around the bathroom as well. There was plenty of space for my wheelchair to get around the cabin. The only down side to it is if you are restricted completely to a wheelchair you would have problems getting out on to the balcony. There is a large step to climb over to get out there. With my prosthetic leg on this was not a problem but it would have been nice to roll out there in my wheelchair. Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
the port for embarkation was not organized, no one seemed to know what to do and did not get the priority people on board in a timely manner like being herded the disembarkation to Cabo was total chaos kept calling more people down ... Read More
the port for embarkation was not organized, no one seemed to know what to do and did not get the priority people on board in a timely manner like being herded the disembarkation to Cabo was total chaos kept calling more people down befor even had 1st group off the ship not enough tenders no one seemed to know what they were doing nor did they know how to accomplish the goal of getting folks off the ship in an orderly fashion the massages were great - very relaxing and very helpful for detoxing and for exfoliating and for stress reduction - did not appreciate always tying to sell the products at a very inflated price Loved the sauna room and the steam room appreciated the lemon and the orange flavored water in the relaxation room the cabin was quit good, always kept neat & clean able to rest in the room load speaker was not piped into room except for wen having safety drill. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
This was a seven-day cruise roundtrip from Long Beach, California with visits to Puerto Villarta and Cabo San Lucas. Hubby and I are experienced cruisers (close to 50 cruises). Until this cruise, we thought that there could never be a ... Read More
This was a seven-day cruise roundtrip from Long Beach, California with visits to Puerto Villarta and Cabo San Lucas. Hubby and I are experienced cruisers (close to 50 cruises). Until this cruise, we thought that there could never be a bad cruise. We stand corrected! From beginning to the end, this was a subpar experience. Embarkation We arrived early so we could relax in the lounge and have a cup of coffee prior to embarkation. When Carnival first moved to the Long Beach from San Pedro, there was a separate check-in lounge inside the terminal for suite, minisuite and priority passengers. The lounge then resembled the airy lobby of an upscale hotel, furnished with comfortable and attractive sofas and chairs. There was coffee, juice, sodas, water, and a large variety of snacks. Now, the lounge is located outside the terminal, resembles a stuffy Quonset hut and is furnished with uncomfortable, straight backed chairs crowded into every available space. There is no coffee, water or snacks. When I inquired why, the attendant told me that they couldn’t solve the “ant” problem. We walked over to the Queen Mary, paid the $10 admission so we could have breakfast inside. Our other option was a food truck located by the parking garage. The Cabin Since this was a short cruise, we opted for an unobstructed view balcony on Deck Four. Usually, everything is spic and span. The balcony furniture had been wiped down, but was not quite clean. The glass was so smudged that it detracted from the balcony view. The last time I saw so much rust on a balcony was thirty years ago on a P&O cruise ship that was decommissioned after that cruise. It was day four or five when the workers washed down and cleaned the balcony thoroughly. The Food What food? Gone was the “eat at the buffet almost anytime.” It was more like “when is the buffet open?” That is unless we wanted pizza or a deli sandwich. Not something I wanted every day. When the small buffet was open, the variety was not there. Same food every day. The room service menu was another shock. The things that used to be free, like chicken wings and French fries now came with a surcharge. Sort of puts a bad taste in your mouth. Pun intended. The restaurant dining has always been our favorite until this cruise. The food and service has always been very, very good if not excellent. This cruise, not so much. On the whole, the hot food was just warm and slightly overcooked. On the first formal night, I chose the lobster tail and shrimp. Without asking if I wanted it, another lobster tail was put on my plate. Rather than have it go to waste, I asked for a container so I could put it and the remainder of my meal in the cabin refrigerator. For the first time on any cruise, including several other Carnival cruises we were told no; it was not allowed. It got worse later in the week when I was ill. Nothing contagious, but I didn’t feel like getting dressed for dinner. My husband went to the dining room to get something for me to eat. The maitre’d told him that it was not allowed even though I had done the exact thing when my husband had the flu on another Carnival cruise. The maitre’d then told my husband that he had to “call his supervisor” for permission. I finally got something to eat, but not without my husband becoming very insistent. One positive memory was the officer (the head of bar services from Florida). He absolutely loved his job and we could tell. He cared the passengers and was very cordial to us and polite to his employees. It was refreshing. Disembarkation This was the best part of the cruise. Unfortunately, after talking to some of my fellow passengers, it seems that our experience on this cruise is becoming more the norm on Carnival line ships in the corporation’s attempt steer passengers to its more costly lines: Princess, Costa, Seabourn, Holland America, Cunard an Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
Close to home for my Birthday Cruise~~~ My fight was delayed so I boarded with no one in front of me, no line, I'll be late more often :) The ship is showing it's age, especially the atrium, dark, dull & dingy is what I ... Read More
Close to home for my Birthday Cruise~~~ My fight was delayed so I boarded with no one in front of me, no line, I'll be late more often :) The ship is showing it's age, especially the atrium, dark, dull & dingy is what I think it is...needs to be painted a light color and needs new lighting too it's just so blah no one seemed to be spending any time in there at all...bar is boring...please do something to liven this place up. Best part is watching the glass elevators go up and down...that's entertainment???? yikes!! Casino was awful, saw one woman win in 7 days...gee maybe they were just quiet about it! I played slots and they just took and took and took, pitiful. Even the "special spins" were so measly $25.00 ??...add a zero or two! Your machines are robbing us and then you have a pitiful reward for someone who is "lucky" enough to have their name drawn for a spin of the wheel. Not very much entertainment, nothing was really drawing a crowd...needs improvement. Took this cruise because it was close to home and I considered it my birthday cruise... Thanks for the wine, cookies, water bottle, and $12. photo gift card. I think this was my 6th Carnival cruise...my favorite was on the brand new Carnival Spirit in May 2001. So new in fact that we were the first to stay in our balcony cabin and when we boarded the ship the cabin number was reversed with the inside cabin across from us and they had to take a screwdriver to put the numbers in the right places. Fun memory, we knew we had paid for a balcony not an inside... it did prove we were the first passengers to be in the cabin. This was my 54th cruise, I would live on a ship if I could~~~ but not this one :) Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
I had never been on a cruise to the Mexican Riviera. This made cruise number 13 for me aboard Carnival ships. I enjoyed the cruise although the ship is older and smaller than some of Carnival's other ships. The decorations were a bit ... Read More
I had never been on a cruise to the Mexican Riviera. This made cruise number 13 for me aboard Carnival ships. I enjoyed the cruise although the ship is older and smaller than some of Carnival's other ships. The decorations were a bit weird with all of that grape theme throughout the restaurants. The food was good. The entertainment was a waste of time. The vast majority of personnel aboard the ship were very nice. The lady who was the casino manager clearly had no idea what she was doing. The dealers were friendly. The pit boss and especially the casino manager need to be transferred to the pizza parlor. The bar service at the gambling tables was very slow. Do your gambling in Las Vegas or other locations as the casino on board the ship is just a joke. The only blackjack table that had 3/2 odds was the Fun 21...Regular blackjack was 6/5. Not worth your time! Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
This cruise was for my husbands birthday, a couple friends came with us. We had a great time, the service was pretty amazing too. There were never really any waits for drinks. The highlight of the cruise certainly was the cruise ... Read More
This cruise was for my husbands birthday, a couple friends came with us. We had a great time, the service was pretty amazing too. There were never really any waits for drinks. The highlight of the cruise certainly was the cruise director staff. Chloe the cruise director is like the energizer bunny. That girl never stops and is at almost all shows, events and games. J-swift was so incredibly awesome, friendly, outgoing and funny, we had a great time at bingo with her. The entertainment was like most other ships, kind of cheesy, but fun and upbeat. The ports were fun as well. We had two days in Cabo. I don't understand why they don't stay docked overnight. We had to board the ship and cruise around over night and returned in the morning. Puerta Vallarta was an even better port and time. There are plenty to do at both ports. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
What can I say? This was a wonderful cruise. The service was excellent. The food was excellent. I especially liked the Nick and Nora steakhouse – it was amazing! There was lots to do on the ship , Never boring. I had the best mac & ... Read More
What can I say? This was a wonderful cruise. The service was excellent. The food was excellent. I especially liked the Nick and Nora steakhouse – it was amazing! There was lots to do on the ship , Never boring. I had the best mac & cheese I've ever had during the brunch at Sea. The Dr. Seuss breakfast was a lot of fun and well worth the five dollars. Shows were entertaining as were the comedians. I enjoyed playing my favorite slot in the casino – jackpot party. Lots of places to get away for quiet to just sit and watch the ocean or read. I especially enjoyed seeing an occasional whale or dolphin from the ship. Some new things for me on the cruise was the Clue Game, hunt for little ducks, the oversized Hasbro games and the Dr Suess Breakfast. The Platinum Perks were good but not always well executed- sent to unnecessary long lines, given 10 and 11 tags delaying getting our bags at the end, only one laundry bag in room, could only use my drink coupon at breakfast and lunch in dining room. The Platinum Party and the Cruise CRITIC meet and mingle were both very nicely done. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
We went to Cabo San Lucas, Mazatlán, and Puerto Vallarta. Never went to those places before and I'm glad I did. It was a great experience. The ship was very nice, although as always there is room for improvement! Embarkation ... Read More
We went to Cabo San Lucas, Mazatlán, and Puerto Vallarta. Never went to those places before and I'm glad I did. It was a great experience. The ship was very nice, although as always there is room for improvement! Embarkation process at Long Beach definitely has to be improved. Mimic Miami! That should be all. They have plenty of space. Add counters at the airport (as in Miami too). Horatio's buffet is a mess and on embarkation day not all the stations were open! Everybody is hungry and it is the only place to eat! Variety of food at the buffets was not as good as in other Carnival ships. Hamburgers buns were not fresh and fries were cold. Lemon juice, is the only free option after breakfast, why??? The safety brief at the emergency location is still a disaster. Employees just push people next to each other without explaining anything. I don't think people will know what to do if don't take time to watch the TV version on their rooms. Otherwise, I love the ship configuration with most of the public places at the lower levels. Still wondering how it will be to sleep at the Riviera deck close to the Frankenstein disco as music was really loud. There is only one dining room but it is huge and beautiful. Well organized. Food is great and employees seems really happy there. I did not go the steak house but order from the dining room ($20) and steak was delicious! I had cabin 4216 on the main deck at the back. Great location, although you feel a lot of vibration on bed. Couldn't figure out why. Did not feel vibration at dining room below my cabin. At Cabo, the Arch was almost in front of my balcony. It is my first time with a balcony. It was good but pray for good neighbors. You could hear conversations and not everybody close doors the same way! Shows at the Phantom Theater were good but short. Stand up comedy was the best and Elizabeth and the LGBT crowd at the piano bar was very good too. Pools were not as crowded as in other ships. There are three. Hot tubs were crowded as in any other ship. Water slide was great but only open twice within the seven days on board... One thing that really bother me was the difference between the ship time and the land time in Mexico. Although a tour guide insisted the tours always follow ship-time that was not what we experienced. Also some of the excursion tickets sold by Carnival indicated meeting time at port while others have meeting time on board. If on port please proceed to tenders or port; otherwise your will be seating down wasting time waiting for a call it will never be done. Don't do line to get numbers for tenders, your ticket will get you out. I'm telling you this because no announcement was ever done to this effect. Only negative for beautiful host Cloe! I think I sound a little negative but it is just looking for improvement. I had a great time on board, and in the places visited. Mexico is great. I like Puerto Vallarta the best, although panoramic views in Cabo are amazing and we got to see an amazing sunset in Mazatlán! Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
This was our third Carnival Cruise.We were with our best friends and had cabins in the aft next to each other.I had ordered a bottle of champagne online so we could have a toast when we got to our cabins.The bottle was on the counter but ... Read More
This was our third Carnival Cruise.We were with our best friends and had cabins in the aft next to each other.I had ordered a bottle of champagne online so we could have a toast when we got to our cabins.The bottle was on the counter but not on ice.I asked our cabin person if we could get a ice bucket for our champagne. He said he didn't have any. The bottle sat on the counter the whole trip and at the end I wrapped it up and took it home in the suitcase.The other negative thing was that after going to guest services to sign papers to unlock our balcony so we four could visit, it never happened. We understand security reasons for not unlocking it, but couldn't they just tell us up front instead of going through the motions and never saying anything? The positive things and there were many, sort of outweigh the bad. We loved the Serenity Deck. I Gede was a friendly happy drink waiter.He greeted us by name and felt like a friend.The food was GREAT in the main restaurant. The lobster cost extra but was so worth it! We loved all the ports and had a good time. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
Have Cruised with Carnival 27 times and we like the Spirit class ships. They do not seem as crowded as some of the Larger ships. Always have had great service. Been to the ports many times, so we just love relaxing on the ship.Plenty of ... Read More
Have Cruised with Carnival 27 times and we like the Spirit class ships. They do not seem as crowded as some of the Larger ships. Always have had great service. Been to the ports many times, so we just love relaxing on the ship.Plenty of room in our Cabin (6279). and lots of Closet and Drawer space.We do not always eat in the dining room, so this helps to pack lighter. There is always different choices of food to eat. Either the Buffet for Dinner or Just Deli sandwich or Pizza. In the evening we spend time in the Casino, and try to catch the entertainment in the Lounge 3 or 4 nights. Embarkation and debarkation from Long Beach has always been easy for us. Since I am a smoker , I did like the area on Deck 9 ,Lido Starboard side at the front of the ship with the Tables. Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
Travel agent recommended it. I am not likely to ever sail Carnival again unless a real steal. Carnival does not understand the definition of Serenity. It was as loud as the other pool areas where adults and children swam and played. ... Read More
Travel agent recommended it. I am not likely to ever sail Carnival again unless a real steal. Carnival does not understand the definition of Serenity. It was as loud as the other pool areas where adults and children swam and played. The Loungers etc were all held by towels even tho the sign says do not reserve hammocks, lounges and other seats in the serenity area. I sat on a sofa and could have stayed home to do that. While the cabin steward was excellent, and Nicki and Maria in the Alchemy Bar were beyond helpful, there was a shortage of staff. Cocktails had to be placed at the bar and usually you had to wait for your drinks to to deliver to your table. Smokers did not wait to enter smoking areas to light up. My bed was comfortable but the vibration of the ship and knocking of some kindn continued to awaken me during the night. Robert and Corina in Bacchus at the 8:15 dinner were amazing. They remembered us from the 2nd day on. Also they remember the things we ordered every night. The first night at our assigned seats, the waiter was rude to me so we got our table reassigned and it was perfect. Carnival is not a ship to sail on if you want quiet to read, except when you use the many comfortable, charming searing nooks inside. I watched You Tube video prior to leaving and the Serenity Area looks so inviting. It's not serene but a great place to party with adults only. Towelettes to open doors in ladies room were a nice touch but seat covers were discontinued. Forget a nice piece of chocolate on your bed at night. And definitely bring lotion ladies. They were discontinued as well. Didn't get the speedy pass to board. Saved $60 as I passed three lines for those who purchased the pass. I did like the reduced amount of announcements. I thoroughly enjoyed eating in the Lido restaurant for early coffee and snacks. Meals in dining room were okay but the great service made up for the lack of taste. Finally gym was a nice size. Temperature was way too warm but that may be due to the whirlpool right in the gym. BEWARE you will be overcharged and duplicate billing when you buy the basic internet service and then upgrade for faster speed (definitely needed) especially when you use more than one device (iPhone and iPad) Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
Look, cruising is a blast. I mean great beds, service and food, entertainment all around. Overall, a great deal, but a few negatives can put a cast over the experience. I'll get to those, but the nice thing about this cruise is the ... Read More
Look, cruising is a blast. I mean great beds, service and food, entertainment all around. Overall, a great deal, but a few negatives can put a cast over the experience. I'll get to those, but the nice thing about this cruise is the beautiful scenery, calm seas and great color and culture in Mexico. the Cabo stop is short but was long enough to walk a bit and then take a Panga over to the beach in front of THE OFFICE, a fun restaurant with the best chili relleno I ever had! Next stop Mazatlan where we enjoyed cabbing around. Tried to get a tour at the Pacifico Brewery but it was obvious they did not want any Gringos inside. Evidently they are not accustomed to giving tours. We then made our way to Poncho’s on the beach for a wonderful lunch with a view. Last stop, Puerto Vallarta where we took a tequila distillery tour. Great tastes and great tequila, just watch the bottle size you are paying for. Check your bag. Later, take a cab to the strand (just ask to go to McDonald's). There are many nice restaurants along the area, which is beautiful. There are statues at every street. OK, now the MIRACLE problems/negatives. The worst thing was the stomping Caribbean Night right above our staterooms on deck 8. Who plans this stuff?? We complained and got a small compensation, but that is not the point. Who wants their sleep interrupted? Especially when the next morning included an early tour. The food in the Lido cafeteria (Horatio’s) is ok, kind of hit and miss. We did not use it much. The pizza and deli food there is good. The grill off the pool offers delicious burgers but it closes at 6:00 p.m. The dining room food was very good but not always hot. The afternoon tea pastries seemed like day old. The staff of the ship seemed very tired, but I notice this on almost every cruise I've taken. We did this trip nearly ten years ago and noticed less staff this time. The ship looks older than her age. A step up to a meal in the steak house is recommended. Nick and Nora’s offer great steaks and seafood at a nominal up charge. They have a nice bar there with great drinks and great views. The ship has a spacious casino. They also offer all kinds of activities so all in all still a great get away! Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
ship was dated. Furniture worn out. Décor was psychedelic. shore excursion was not what it was suppose to be. very disappointed. Tequila factory tour with no factories. Just people trying to sell you $50.00 bottles of tequila. ... Read More
ship was dated. Furniture worn out. Décor was psychedelic. shore excursion was not what it was suppose to be. very disappointed. Tequila factory tour with no factories. Just people trying to sell you $50.00 bottles of tequila. The entertainment at the theater was sophomoric. The food however, was excellent. I would not cruise again on Carnival. We where offered a $50.00 coupon if we booked a cruise by a certain date, which we did, they would not honor it because we received a discounted price from the Casino. This was not disclosed in the coupon. Read Less
Sail Date April 2015
We chose this cruise because it gave us a chance to get away from snow and cold and the price was right. We had cruised on the Splendor once before out of LA and had a wonderful time. Since the Splendor is no longer in Long Beach, we ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it gave us a chance to get away from snow and cold and the price was right. We had cruised on the Splendor once before out of LA and had a wonderful time. Since the Splendor is no longer in Long Beach, we went with the Miracle. Our stateroom was wonderful as we upgraded to a suite. The ship was fine. The problem was the timing and selection of food in the buffet. One kind of food each day if you didn't want burgers or pizza. The open time of the selected food each day didn't seem to match our preference of times to eat. My husband said he would never go on Carnival again. I am sure if he had been willing to eat in the dining room we would have had good food but he doesn't like to dress up for meals. Just a word to the wise if you like to eat causally in the buffet. The service was OK. We didn't do entertainment. We chose this cruise for the ports and did our own thing in each port. Embarkation was wonderful as the suite allowed to wait in an air-conditioned building until time for us to board. We also had priority disembarkation. I think I was expecting something like our Splendor cruise and was disappointed when it came up short on the food. Read Less
Sail Date March 2015
Had a great time...my 14th cruise, maybe 6-8 with carnival...Ship was spotless, Casino was fun..lots to do...Trisha in housekeeping was excellent..always around, and very helpful...our room was spotless at all times..Shows were good, ... Read More
Had a great time...my 14th cruise, maybe 6-8 with carnival...Ship was spotless, Casino was fun..lots to do...Trisha in housekeeping was excellent..always around, and very helpful...our room was spotless at all times..Shows were good, comedian was Great! Food was a nice verity, but room temperature....Sad that you now have to purchase a (coke) card for $50, to have a soda, years back, we also got a basket in the restroom filled with useable items, ie, toothpaste, lotion, shaver, soap, asprin, etc..Really have cut back on the small stuff... Overall great week! Read Less
Sail Date March 2015
This review is for our seven day cruise on the Carnival Miracle sailing round trip from Long Beach to Cabo, Mazatlán and Puerto Vallarta. It will be our last cruise with Carnival. We have cruised 15 times and 4 have been with Carnival. We ... Read More
This review is for our seven day cruise on the Carnival Miracle sailing round trip from Long Beach to Cabo, Mazatlán and Puerto Vallarta. It will be our last cruise with Carnival. We have cruised 15 times and 4 have been with Carnival. We have been to these ports many times. This is not one of those “there was nothing edible on board or the crew was fighting all the time” reviews. To the contrary we had a great cruise, but read all the way through. The weather was great. Sea days were balmy, with a slight breeze and calm seas. Tropical clouds filled the horizon. The seas were so calm the entire cruise we commented that one couldn’t feel the ship moving. Usually on the northbound return large swells are encountered in this part of the Pacific, but not on this cruise. Sunrises through the clouds were dazzling. Sunsets beautiful with an especially dramatic sunset in Puerto Vallarta. The sky was so filled with various shades of red that the high rise resort windows along the coast glowed like light sticks. The weather in ports was also mild. In fact, Puerto Vallarta was almost chilly in the morning. We saw dolphins jumping and following us on several occasions, flying fish and at a distance whale spouts. As we sailed south the water turned a light blue. The Miracle is in good shape. Saw nothing worn, broken or outdated. We loved the theme in the halls of posters of great literary works. The end of our hall had a profile of Sherlock Holmes and outside our stateroom was Hercule Poirot, my wife’s favorite. The Great Gatsby’s Secret Garden was well done and a relaxing hideaway. We had a wonderful room steward and his assistant was a continuous source of laughs for us. Always smiling, joking and wishing us well on shore. There were 438 children aboard. We must say, not because we have grandchildren, that the kids behavior was exceptional. Courteous, no rough housing or loudness and parents always accompanied them. Carnival does provide many supervised activities for youth and this can give parents some private time. The slot machines were generous. Hit a $60 bonus and for the trip we made a few dollars. That’s a first. Of course the large Bloody Mary’s in the morning helped with the luck. I bought a deck used Carnival Casino cards for $1. There is a shaved groove on each side to prevent casino reuse, but otherwise like new with the Carnival logo. I believe most ship casinos offer these decks for $1. We ate in the main dining room twice. The room is decorated in bright colors, globes and is awesome. The first day at sea dinner offered lobster and I asked for two and my wife asked for prime rib to go with her lobster. No problem. Service was friendly and fast. Ordered wine that arrived before appetizers. The second meal was prime rib night. Same great service and second portions. Staff did the farewell tribute to cruisers. Couldn’t ask for anything more. We also ate at the specialty Nick and Nora restaurant. A cover charge of $35 per person applies. Another classic meal. Lobster and filet for me and a giant rib-eye for my wife. The table was along the window, semi-private and it seemed like our wait staff were only there for us. All courses were delicious. In Cabo San Lucas we walked along the marina area and did some shopping. Talked to people from the ship. There is a cantina right on the walkway that we like where we had a couple margaritas and a giant nachos and cheese plate in our front row seats. Later we walked and shopped some more as the sun set. The temperature cooled down and it was refreshing for Cabo. There was quite a line for the tenders, so we had a couple more margaritas at the last cantina before the dock. Again, saw and visited with people in line that we had met on board. The group that had a wedding at one of the hotels arrived with gowns in tow. They said the wedding and party was great. We ended up seated in the bridge by the tender Captain for the ride to the ship. It was dark and the ship was pretty all lit up. The captain actually stopped the tender, moved into a good view position and his mate took a picture of us with the ship in background. Very nice. Mazatlán was the next port. It was only the second time a Carnival ship had called since the security restrictions that placed the port off limits were lifted. We weren’t sure exactly what has happened that caused the cruise industry to avoid the port for two years. Rumor was tourist mugging and drug war lord activity. Also it was announced that agreement had been reached to enhance security, but no details were provided. We did see Tourist Police, Federal Police, Municipal Police, and Transit Police everywhere. Everywhere, in cars, on foot, in SUV’s, in trucks and on motorcycles. All with the red and blue lights blinking and speeding up and down every street. Many had troops standing with M-16’s slung over their shoulders. Even observed an “inspector” checking vendors along the beach where the tourist buses stop .Seemed like a little excessive but we felt safe. We took a ship excursion to the beach area and saw cliff divers, many statues of sea life, a cathedral, the beach area, the highest lighthouse in the western hemisphere and a little of old Mazatlán .Our guide was very informative and always reiterated meet times and safety tips. The bus was a double decker but short. The aisles were very narrow and some people had trouble moving in them. We saw a “Folkloric” show that was awesome. The special theater was comfortable and the sound was good. The dancers and their costumes were beautiful. We had a chance to shop and had lunch at a place called Margaritas in the tourist area. Open air, waiters that balance margaritas on their heads when delivering, and good food. The next port was Puerto Vallarta. We toured tequila factories with a ship tour. The guide, Jose was one we had in the past an excellent. The first factory had 10 different tastings. Besides the usual, there was coffee, amaretto (umm…good) and peach. Had some tacos and beans there. Very good with native cactus or nepal. The second stop also involved 10 tastings. Unique was vanilla crème and walnut. The latter was very good. We then drove through the country side, stopped to shop and drove through old Puerto Vallarta. Mandatory stops to observe iguanas, statuary along the malecon, the cathedral and the old cobble streets. As always, we ended the shore day at the old cantina by the entrance to the ship area. On our first cruise this place was all by itself along the water. Improvements in the pier area have hidden it somewhat, but it’s still there. It’s a gathering place for returning cruisers and ship staff. We always run into people we have met on board there. As I said, we had a wonderful cruise because the important things, like the weather, the sea, the sun rises and sunsets, the ports and marine life that we enjoy and are there regardless of what cruise brand you are on. Sitting on the veranda feeling a gentle warm breeze while listening to the sounds of the waves moving past the ship is so relaxing. We don’t let things upset us and our decision not to sail with Carnival again is based on events that puzzle us. Embarkation was terrible. They say you must board between 1 and 3 pm. We arrived at 2:30 and the line stretched almost back to the Queen Mary. Once in the building we were moved from catacomb to catacomb, sometimes having to side step in sync to move our line. Got aboard around 4:15. Many people were very upset. I think the disembarkation discussion would fit here. Also a disaster. We reported to designated areas at 830 am. We finally got to curbside with our luggage at 12:15 pm. It was total chaos as all the people waiting to board were everywhere. It was almost impossible to get to elevators in parking structure. Many people were very upset. The cruise director said that the hold up was the dock workers not being ready, then he said the authorities were not ready and finally he said too many passengers were petting the drug dogs causing delays. Come on! He also said this delay was rare. The guys helping with luggage say this is routine. I agree. The drop off /pickup area is small. There is one small exit from the building. Carnival does not provide enough customs agents to process in a timely manner. This will never change unless they overhaul the facility. On our first sea day our cabin ventilation malfunctioned. It would start and stop, sometimes blowing cool sometimes hot. I woke up sweating first night. Call the ships service desk and was told they would send someone “to educate me on the use of a thermostat”. A guy showed up and said we were at 78 degrees in the cabin. I told him it was at the coolest now. He called for someone to come and make repairs. We got a note saying the repair man had come by and the thermostat is working correctly. I called down and said the problem must be with what the thermostat is connected to. I was told all was working, they could do no more and when I said “but it’s too hot” I was told, “Well sir, that’s just the way it is”. On the first sea day we attended the cruise director welcome aboard and port talk. We were told to move our clocks forward one hour that night and also the night we leave Cabo. We did that. The next morning I was bewildered when none of the food stations were open. I asked why and was told I was an hour early. I brought up the cruise directors direction and was told that could not have happened. Several guys standing by me said they heard the same thing. Oh well. Came back a little while later and saw a breakfast station open, food in all the bins, the cook at parade rest and appearing ready to serve. I grabbed a plate and was told I had to wait. I asked why and was told they could not open for 3 more minutes. I couldn’t believe it and asked why. I was told, “well sir, that’s just the way it is.” Sound familiar already? Regarding the time changes. We set clocks forward two nights, then back two nights. So other than the first and last nights, the time was always changing. There was confusion on board. We’ve cruised with another brand that said use ship time. All ship excursions are ship time. If you go ashore on own, adhere to ship time. Pretty simple and not confusing. At Cabo we anchored about noon. This is a tender port. The cruise director said excursion people got priority but that tender tickets would be available starting at 10 am. However, he said usually by 2 pm you can just walk off, there would be no wait. So about 2:00pm I went to the tender ticket person and was given #37. I said I just heard #2 called. How long before we would be going ashore with #37. He said to relax and enjoy the ship. I asked if he could please give me a rough estimate. He said over 2 hours. I said you’ve got to be kidding. The last tender back to the ship is 7:15pm, so why go ashore at 4:30pm? He looked away with that you are annoying me expression on his face and said, you you guessed it, “Well sir, that’s just the way it is”. Others said they were told the delay was because two other ships were here. I’ve been here when there were 4 ships. Also, they said it was too rough to use the lifeboats as auxiliary tenders. However I saw that the other two cruise ships were using their lifeboats with no problem. So it was announced that ship arrived would arrive at Mazatlán an hour later than planned. So 9 am instead of 8 am. We had pre purchased excursion tickets that said report to the theater to stage at 8 am and the tour would start at 8:30 am. So I assumed these times would be also be moved forward, that is, theater at 9 am and tour start at 9:30am. After all, we couldn’t leave for a shore excursion a half hour before the ship docks. So I called to verify. I was told to do what the ticket says, regardless. I asked how could we eat if the food area did not open until 7:30 and get to our room to prepare for shore then get to the theater all in 30 minutes. You guessed it, she said “Sir, that is just the way it is” Well, we showed up around nine, but many had been waiting for an hour already. We still waited an hour and 15 minutes for some reason. I might add we were give labels with a tour number and assigned to a numerical waiting area. However the call to go was by tour name, and very difficult to understand. This resulted in a lot of confusion. Some observations regarding the Horatio’s food court area. Seating is great. A lot of ocean view seats, comfortable booths and chair seats. The layout is such that food stations are separated into quads that some distance apart. In each quad there can be 4 stations. For example there may be a grill, oriental food, Italian food and a deli in a quad. But they may not all be open. In fact none are open except very specific times. Like say 11 am, and you want to have a snack, nothing will be open. Don’t try to eat dinner early, nothing open. People were perplexed and did not understand the intentional deprivation of nourishment. This is a cruise after all. I saw many people asking why they did this. They all left shaking their heads. Also, say you go to the omelet bar. Good ones they are. But the toast is at the breakfast grill a hundred feet through a crowd away. And drinks are at a central location. No trays, so if you want a couple orange juices and coffees, it is a two trip journey through the crowd. Makes no sense to me, but I guess that’s just the way it is. On other cruise ships we sat, a server asked what beverages we would like and brought them. The food lines were organized so that in one easy pass you had what you needed. On disembarkation day, as 12 noon approached and we had been waiting to disembark for over 31/2 hours, I went to the food court area in search a small morsel of nourishment. It appeared the Deli was open. I took a plate. Three voices yelled “we are closed”, and one officer said to me “move along”, as if I were a vagrant or petty thief. Unbelievable! I mean come on, throw an old dog a bone! Well I got thinking. How can all this this be? It makes no sense. Carnival had 2400 eager happy cruisers show up on disembarkation day. I enjoy reading the blogs and roll calls. You know, people who post the number of days until we cruise, sharing packing tips, what to do at the ports, and so on. All very excited and happy customers. Then think of the ship, a beauty. And of course the best venue of all, the ocean, with its breezes, sun rises and sunsets, marine life and mystical diamond like sheen in the wake of the sun. It shouldn’t take much effort to keep your guests happy. A dream scenario for someone in the customer service business. You would have to intentionally go out of your way to make someone upset in this situation. That is what Carnival did. That’s the only conclusion I can come to. So what is the root of the problem? It starts at the top. The description that best describes the ship staff attitude is “disdainful arrogance”. Check your dictionary. They look at the cruisers as those people that will come aboard and want this, expect that and do these things. How do we put up with them? That position is supported by the managers and I’m sure they have had training and have been told to resolve issues by saying “Well sir or madam, that just the way it is.” Translation, jump in the lake (ocean in this case!), so what, we don’t care and so on. Plug in your own more vulgar expressions. It’s too bad. They had it made and blew it. What a shame. No need to tolerate that. So I quote from Shakespeare’s As You Like It, (Act III, scene II, Orlando) with a message for Carnival; “I do desire we may be better strangers” …and that’s just the way it is!   Read Less
Sail Date November 2014
Just enjoyed TWO weeks, back to back cruise's on the Miracle and what a wondefull time . First week was full due to a holiday {Pres . day} on Monday so lts more kids on board . Didn't like the 2 day at Cabo due Tenders are long ... Read More
Just enjoyed TWO weeks, back to back cruise's on the Miracle and what a wondefull time . First week was full due to a holiday {Pres . day} on Monday so lts more kids on board . Didn't like the 2 day at Cabo due Tenders are long waits up to 1 hour to get off. But Cabo is fun and wonderfull port. Second cruse week was two nights at Puerta and what a great stop over, as being at port over night at Puerta was great as walking off ship is a breeze. Balcony Cabin 9124 was out standing balcony and had this room for the two cruises ,so didn't have to move anything. Being one level below the Lido buffet was tempting, no noise at all and great service from the housekeeping staff. Food was really good, sure you don't like everything , just order another. Had 3 lobsters on night and they put them on one dish. We asked every night for a selective table an never had to wait. The sandwiches were fabulous and Pizza at 4 am was addicting. After the first week the font desk will arrange for you to walk off the ship to customs for debark and you may Embark for the second week by walking back on the ship with only your passports and room key once customs clears for Boarding , they guide you thru Priority Boarding.. Great value and great weather at Cabo and Puerta. Cheers.   Read Less
Sail Date February 2014
Carnival Miracle Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.4
Dining 3.5 3.9
Entertainment 4.0 3.8
Public Rooms 4.0 4.3
Fitness Recreation 3.5 4.0
Family 4.0 4.0
Shore Excursion 3.0 4.0
Enrichment 1.5 3.5
Service 4.0 4.4
Value For Money 4.5 4.0
Rates 3.0 4.4

Find a Carnival Miracle Cruise

Easily compare prices from multiple sites with one click